Speed Reads

A procrastinator's dream

Google's Maps-based quiz game is your new favorite time-waster

Google's Maps-based quiz game is your new favorite time-waster

As anyone who's survived a Sporcle or Geoguessr addiction knows, geography-based games are kryptonite for people who want to be productive. So if you're thinking about playing Google's new Maps-based game, Smarty Pins, be warned: You probably won't get anything done for awhile.

Smarty Pins, which Google quietly launched yesterday, uses Google's Maps interface to ask players questions in categories ranging from entertainment to history to science. Players must locate the correct answer (which is always a location) on the map by dropping a pin.

Players start with 1,000 miles, which serve as points, and lose miles depending on how far they are from the correct location. Guessing correctly doesn't earn you miles, but a savvy geographer can win them by answering a question correctly quickly, before a hint is given.

The game ends when you run out of miles, but that doesn't mean you can't whip out your (virtual) map and play again — and again, and again.