How to Win at Nine 'Price is Right' Games
You'd think that anyone who attends a taping of the show would be familiar with its games, but you'd be amazed at the number of people who have never seen the one they're about to play or have seen it yet still completely screw it up. The contestants on 'Wheel of Fortune' often make me sad, but at least they seem to know how to play (even if you often wonder "why can't they guess this?" and "why are they still buying vowels?!").
What follows is a guide to winning seven popular games on 'The Price Is Right.' I didn't include games like Squeeze Play or Pick-A-Number or One Away or Switch? or a half dozen others because those games really just involve luck.
1. Contestants Row. OK, technically, this isn't one of the "games," and technically I'm not even going to tell you how to win, since it depends on what the prize is and what position you hold in Contestants Row. But I can tell you two ways not to lose. One, don't bid $1 unless you're the last person to bid on the prize. It's amazing how many times people will bid a buck when they're the second or third person to bid, giving the next person a chance to bid $2. Second, don't bid $1 under another person's bid.
I saw someone do this just a couple of weeks ago, and it made me want to kick in my television set. Someone bid $1000 and then the next person bid $999. The hell? You'd have to be exactly right to win the bid. I was waiting for Drew Carey to say, "Well, that was a dumb bid!"
Maybe we should give this person the benefit of a doubt and just assume that she bid this way because she was thinking of bidding under the other player but got nervous and confused and thought bidding a $1 under the other person would mean that anything under the other person's bid would be "closer" to the actual price. Yeah, that's confusing, but I bet that's what they were thinking (even if it doesn't make any sense).
And anyone who runs up on stage when their name is called to "come on down" should be disqualified immediately and forced to sit in the corner as other players win MacBooks and trips to Europe.
2. Cliff Hangers. You have 25 steps to work with here, so you should win this game. The prices of the three prizes will probably get higher as the game progresses. The first prize will probably be $10-$20, the next one will probably be $20-$30 and the last one will probably be the most expensive. Now, this game has gotten slightly harder since Drew Carey took over, with more of a mix of prices, but if you just play it logically and remember how many steps remain, this should be a cinch (especially if you nail the first two prices and have a lot of room to play with when you guess the third).
3. Bonkers. Never, ever, ever listen to the audience. You can't just stand there and point to the spots and wait for the audience to yell out prices. You have 30 seconds. This is one of those games where you just have to go nutty and put the paddles on as many spots as possible. Don't even think of a price -- that will just confuse you. Another tip: the price probably won't be all paddles on the bottom or all paddles on the top, so keep that in mind. Mix it up as fast as you can.
4. Ten Chances. No other game gets me more tense. One day I thought Bob Barker was going to have a stroke dealing with the player who just couldn't get it. Like 3D-TV, this game shouldn't be watched by pregnant woman or the elderly.
Don't listen to the audience in this game either. It's too confusing and takes up too much time. Just focus on the numbers on the board and write the price down. Also, the price is not going to be $652 or $907, OK? Talk about over-thinking. So don't waste a space writing those numbers. It's probably going to be $625 or $790 -- a nice, round-ish figure.
5. Range Game. This is another game that has gotten harder in the past couple of years. It used to be you didn't even have to worry about what the price of the prize was, the red range box was always kinda in the middle of the board. Now it can be harder, depending on what price the range starts at. Take note of that. You know it's not going to be right near the bottom and you know it's not going to be right near the top. So think of what price it could be and make an intelligent guess about where it will be in the large middle chunk of the board.
6. Stack The Deck. You're going for a car, so why do you have to know the first digit in the price? You need to fill in the last three numbers, since they could be anything. When you win the first pick, I'd go with the fourth slot. If you win another, go with the third spot. If you win another, go with the last spot. Sure, you could pick the third number first, like this guy does, but I'd go with the fourth slot (especially important if you wind up only getting one pick).
7. Clock Game. For God's sake, don't freak out! Go higher and lower in a logical way and listen to Drew. Not like this woman:
8. Cover Up. This is a fairly easy game to win, but here's the deal: After you cover up all the numbers the first time, you actually don't want a lot of them to be right. Why? Because the less you have right, the more chances you have to keep playing! For example, if you get just one number right, you have four more chances to play. If you get four numbers right, that means you only have one more chance to figure out what the numbers are. This is one of 'Price Is Right' games where less is more.
9. Triple Play. Oh, never mind. It's almost impossible to win this game.
Have advice for 'Price Is Right' contestants?