In this game show, contestants answer trivia questions and then compete in a timed race through the supermarket. The team that has the most valuable items in their shopping cart at the end of the race wins.
A high-stakes version of the classic game show, hosted by Gene Rayburn. A group of celebrities would be given a sentence with a missing word, which they would then have to fill in. The ... See full summary »
Charles Nelson Reilly
Contestants were asked questions about how 100 people answered a poll question then played a card game where they tried to guess whether the next card drawn from a deck in a sequence would be higher or lower.
Three contestants one a returning champion competed in this game of strategy. The game consisted of two rounds, each with two parts. In the first part of each round, host Tomarken read a toss-up question; the first to signal is given a chance to answer. That response, plus two other possible answers are then listed, with the other two contestant then given a chance to choose from the three listed answers. A correct answer earned the first contestant three spins and his/her opponents one spin each. Four such questions were played; the players used the spins to accumulate cash and prizes on an 18-space board. One contestant at a time is in control of the board; he/she stopped a randomly-flashing cursor by pressing his signal device (and usually the scream "STOP!"). The contestant wins whatever appears in the lit space a cash amount, a prize, perhaps an extra spin or other action space ... or it could be a Whammy, which caused the contestant to lose all he/she had accumulated in that ... Written by
Brian Rathjen <firstname.lastname@example.org>
A game of strategy cleverly disguised as a slot machine
While many will snort "Chance! Nothing but chance!" when asked about the game show "Press Your Luck", the rules of the game turned the big board bonus round into a true exercise in strategy.
To refresh your memory, after the 3 contestants earned spins by answering 4 general knowledge questions, it was time to face the 18-square big board, with its changing prize values, score-zeroing Whammies and flying cursor. In motion, the big board was possibly one of the most hypnotic devices ever created for a game show. The contestants stopped the cursor on one of the squares by mashing an over-sized button (the same button used to buzz in and answer a question to earn 3 spins instead of answering it as a multiple-choice question for 1). It was also customary to chant "No Whammies. . .big bucks. . .no Whammies. . .big bucks" before shouting "STOP!" and hitting the button.
After the contestants earned a few thousand dollars in cash and prizes, strategy came into play. If you're in the lead, do you pass your spins and hope the second-place contender can be wiped off the board? If you're trailing, do you give your spins to the leader, hoping to topple his or her empire? The four-Whammies-and-you're-out rule forced one to make even shrewder decisions. Two players who had Whammied their scores to zero passed their spins to the only one with any prizes, and since she, too, had hit a Whammy, all three were eligible to return to play again.
It isn't until you've experienced the game yourself that the strategy angle really becomes apparent. Short of trying out for "WHAMMY: The All New Press Your Luck" on Game Show Network, you can download a remarkably accurate computer simulation of the original "Press Your Luck" at: