Just when you think you’ve seen every possible concept for an app game, something like this pops up on the App Store.
California Vanity, designed by Jack a. Alepyan, is a clever trivia game idea – guessing the real meaning of vanity license plates. I’ve definitely been guilty of pulling a little too close to the car in front of me at a red light, squinting and saying “EZ4U2NV, what does that – oh.”
There are three parts to this app; searching for vanity plates, browsing vanity plates, and a game. The game is my favorite part, and can be played in single player or two player mode. Choose either a one- or two-minute clock, and try to guess the names of as many vanity plates as possible before time runs out. You get a multiple choice selection, and some of them really are pretty tricky.
Browsing through license plates is interesting if you’re particularly bored. Random license plates pop up, and you can tap them to read the translation and occasional explanation.
To be honest, the search function didn’t work that well for me. Because playing this while driving is pretty wildly unsafe, I searched for vanity license plates online and typed them in. None of the dozen or so I tried came up in the app. To be fair, there are tons of vanity plates out there, and I wouldn’t expect one app to have them all, or even most of them. I was thinking, however, that maybe California Vanity would generate a guess or guesses on what the license plate could mean.
Hopefully as new versions are released, more license plates will be included. As it is now, I would suggest checking this app out if you are interested in the game, but if you are really curious finding out what “RUABCH2” means (hint: it’s a question), you’re better off sticking with Google.
California Vanity requires iPhone OS 3.1.2 or later and is compatible with both iPhone and iPod Touch.