On Ray Combs' last episode, ("The New Family Feud", syndicated, 1994), the winning family gets several 0's, (zeros), in "Fast Money" which prompted Ray to say something to the effect of, "I've been hosting this show for six years and I think this is a damn fine way to go out." As the cameras continued to roll during the credits Ray walked off stage and out of the studio.
Because of declining ratings, in late 1993 the syndication company informed the producers that the show would be canceled unless a change could be made to get it sold for another year. Harris Cattleman came up with the idea of bringing back Richard Dawson. In early 1994, he returned to the Goodson production offices where the producers told Dawson they'd like to bring him back. They also told him he would have to lose 30 lbs before taping starts. However, when taping was to begin he hadn't lost any weight. Dawson agreed to host because he wanted his daughter to see him do "an honest days work." Jonathan Goodson informed Ray that they were bringing Dawson back. On Ray's final taping day, he didn't talk to the families and walked off the stage during the credits.
As Ray Combs walked out on stage for the CBS premiere of "Family Feud", (July 4, 1988), he wished America a happy birthday and stated that he had been watching all of the great CBS shows and was excited about being on CBS hosting "Family Feud". Ray then added that he thought he was prepared for the job, but then, (jokingly), asked to see the first item up for bids. (in reference to CBS' The Price Is Right (1972) ).
When Richard Dawson returned to the syndicated edition of the show in the fall of 1994 the show received a lot of changes. The set was now the one used in the Opryland special with glass blocks added to the board and the family name displays. The music was updated with a new rock remix of "The Feud" and brand new opening music. The show was expanded from 30 minutes to one hour. However, most stations decided to only air the second half of the show. The "Bullseye" round became the "Bankroll" game with a maximum of $7,000 to be won in the first half of the show and $14,000 in the second half. The number of players on each team was reduced from five to four and the time limits in "Fast Money" were increased from 15 seconds and 20 seconds to 20 seconds and 25 seconds.
Joe Namath was briefly signed on for the hosting duties in 1988, but the producers and creator Mark Goodson had second thoughts. Afterwards, Goodson discovered Ray Combs, who was then doing audience warm-ups for sitcoms such as Amen and The Golden Girls.
For this revival the set received a make over. The border around the board was now made out of red plastic. The Family name displays were now a blue background with roses, yellow letters, a red border, and a white frame. The carpet was changed to red and included a yellow logo with red letters. The Family Podiums and Face-Off podium have red around the top, sides, bottom. The Face-Off podium the buzzers are also red and displayed a red, orange, and yellow spectrum when lit up. The numbered side for answers was colored yellow and the ones that weren't in play were blue with white dots to blend in with the board. The background changed to yellow. Basically, everything in this version of Family Feud is virtually the same as the original version.
The set received additional changes when the Bullseye Round was introduced. The top center scoreboard, which had 3 digits, was extended to 4 digits. The reason for this is that originally it was intended to use the Ferranti Packard to display the answers and the top scoreboard for the dollar values. This idea was scrapped and they went with the big Bullseye board with a monitor in the center to display the dollar values and answers. However, the modified 4 digit scoreboard stayed.
Because of an acrimonious relationship with original host Richard Dawson, when CBS picked up the rights for a daytime version of the show, Mark Goodson told the network in no uncertain terms that he did not want to bring Dawson back.
When Family Feud returned to the air, the main theme, "The Feud", and the opening and face-off cues were remixed with synthesized drums added in. In 1994, when Dawson took over, the show received a new music package recorded by Edd Kalehoff with jazz instruments. The main theme, "The Feud" was re-recorded in jazzy arrangement and also featured was brand new opening and face-off music cues.
Despite the show's popularity, CBS executives believed the game show needed another "face lift". In June 1992 the program was relaunched as "Family Feud Challenge" on CBS Daytime. The show was expanded to an hour and included a "Bullseye" round. When Bullseye was added to the syndicated version it remained as a half hour show, but it was renamed "The New Family Feud". Bullseye allowed for a maximum of $10,000 on the first half hour of the CBS "Family Feud Challenge" and up to $20,000 on the second half and on the syndicated half hour "The New Family Feud". From 1988-1992 "Fast Money" was always worth $5,000 on the CBS daytime version and $10,000 on the syndicated afternoon/nighttime version. The changes to the show were not well received by viewers and producers had to rely more heavily on celebrity contestants.