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This awesome game breathes new life into Google Maps

Published Jul 7th, 2014 8:30AM EDT
Google Maps game: Smarty Pins tests geography and trivia
Image: Google

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Google launched a mapping game called Smarty Pins this week that has no apparent function except to be a fun way to educate yourself about geography. Basically, the app will ask you a geography-related trivia question and you have to place a pin on the location that you think represents the answer. For example, if you’re asked to find the region of Mexico whose name is synonymous with a famous hot sauce, then you might place the pin on Tabasco, Mexico and see if you are correct.

If you are correct, you don’t lose any of the 1,000 points you start out with. If you are wrong, you lose points based on the number of miles you are from the correct location.

Smarty Pins asks you questions from six different categories including featured topics, arts and culture, science and geography, sports and games, entertainment, and history and current events.

This nifty game reminds us of the viral mapping game GeoGuessr, which shows you a random Street View screenshot and asks you to guess where that screenshot is from. Like Smarty Pins, you receive points based on how close your guess is from the actual location.

As mentioned earlier, it’s not clear why Google made Smarty Pins, but we like that it did. It tests your knowledge of both random trivia and geography, and it can even teach you a thing or two while you have some fun.