-->''Throw out your rules... these are Road Rules.''

Seeing the popularity of RealityTV granddaddy ''TheRealWorld'', {{MTV}} [[IncrediblyLamePun rolled out]] a [[SpinOff new version]] that took place on an RV. The series followed six (originally five) strangers, similar in age and varied demographics of its sister program, as they traveled the country (or other countries, on occasion). At the start of each season, the cast members were required to surrender all of their money, and had to earn money to survive on as they traveled by either completing missions or performing odd jobs.

Of course, like ''TheRealWorld'', this show also slowly [[TheyChangedItNowItSucks evolved into a shell of its former self]]. Whereas the show was originally meant to resemble "''The Real World'' on an RV", it eventually became more like "''FearFactor'' on an RV". The missions originally seemed to emphasize experiencing new things, especially in the context of travel, with the last usually an "ultimate ending" such as a bungee jump; in addition, mission failures were infrequent. However, by the show's end, almost all of the stunts were usually either [[NintendoHard incredibly hard]] or [[GrossoutShow incredibly gross]], and with them came "punishments" for the team that failed them, the most obvious being a requirement to [[VotedOffTheIsland vote someone off]], who would then promptly be [[ReplacementScrappy replaced]].

A long-standing tradition of the show involved interaction with the cast of the currently-taping season of ''The Real World'', usually involving a "sabotage mission" of some sort. Together the two shows would eventually spawn what is now ''The Real World/Road Rules Challenge''.

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!! RealityTV tropes in use:
* ConfessionCam
* EatThat, especially in later seasons.
* EliminationStatement
* EveryoneMeetsEveryone, and please place your belongings here before boarding the Winnie.
* NonGameplayElimination: Several.
** Season 7 (''Latin America''): Gladys Sanabria attacked Abe Ingersoll and was sent home.
** Season 12 (''South Pacific''): Abram Boise was forced to leave after physically attacking Donell Langham.
** Season 13 (''X-Treme''): Ibis Nieves volunteers to go home after she feels like she lost the mission for the team.
** Season 14 (''Viewers' Revenge''): Abram Boise is sent home (yes, again) for hitting Adam Larson.
* RealityTVShowMansion: Subverted, in that the Roadies shared an RV.
* VotedOffTheIsland: Penalty for failing missions in the last few seasons.

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!! This show provides examples of:
* AnimalChickMagnet: In season 7, Abe Ingersoll used Menudo, the group's pet Chihuahua, to meet girls.
* BrokenPedestal: The friendship of Piggy Thomas and Chadwick Pelletier; both were best buds in season six (Road Rules Down Under), with Chadwick offering much support to the homesick Thomas. But when they met again in the first season of the Real World/Road Rules Challenge, Piggy was heartbroken to find out that Chadwick was now an egotistical jerk who dumped his longtime girlfriend after becoming "famous".
* CorruptTheCutie: This was the entire story of Susie from ''Down Under.'' Cute, blonde, and freshly turned 18, they played her up as a sweet, naive, Christian farmer's daughter, and the majority of the season showed her doing things like performing in a drag show, getting a butterfly tattoo, and stealing a pair of bowling shoes.
* DontTryThisAtHome: Certainly true of the gross-out stunts in later seasons, but an early-season incident prompted MTV to pause the show with a full-screen warning viewers not to imitate what they were about to see: The travelers were sick of smelling like they lived in an RV, but hadn't fared well in recent challenges, so they had no money for a place to stay. They stopped at a motel and asked if they could preview one of the rooms. The manager let them borrow a key, which they used to let their RV-mates into the room. They then returned the key, hid the RV, and snuck back to the motel room. As MTV noted, this is misdemeanor theft, and could have caused a NonstandardGameOver for the cast if they'd been caught.
* FoodFight: Most notably in ''Campus Crawl'', where the cast had to endure being pelted with cafeteria fare from the Alabama student body.
* FranchiseZombie: After season eight flopped in the ratings, the show mainly kept going for the purposes of providing fresh fame whores for the ''Real World/Road Rules Challenge'' series.
* GottaCatchThemAll: The "Road Keys" in the second season, which when assembled directed the cast to their final destination. Revisited in the tenth season with a slightly different mechanic.
* LinkedListClueMethodology: The entire premise; at the end of one mission, a clue would be given for the location of the next.
* LittlestCancerPatient: Well, not the "littlest" since he was a teenager, but one mission during the "Maximum Velocity" season involved a boy with cancer who always wanted to be on the show, but would probably not live long enough to meet the minimum age. Through the Make A Wish Foundation, he got to meet the cast and got them to prank the Real World cast in New Orleans, providing that season's crossover episode.
* {{Mascot}}: The bull head skull on the front of the RV.
* NintendoHard: Some of the stunts in later seasons, including one in which the cast had to [[ItsAllUpstairsFromHere climb the staircase of a skyscraper]]. Combined with the fact that one of the castmates was obese...
* OldShame: A lot of former cast members of Road Rules refused to participate in the Real World/Road Rules Challenge spin-off, ironically forcing MTV to keep the show going for the purpose of getting new cast members who would be willing to do the spin-off.
* {{Pixellation}}: Plenty of body parts to edit out, much like ''RW''.
* ProductPlacement: Winnebago being the most obvious.
* RagtagBunchOfMisfits: Major point of the show; can a group of normal, everyday people, who initially don't know each other, work together to accomplish the missions, or will drama keep them from doing so?
* RecycledINSPACE: As stated above, the show started out as ''TheRealWorld'' on an RV, with later seasons switching ''Real World'' out for ''FearFactor''.
* SpinOff: See RecycledINSPACE. The two shows later started crossing over with ''Real World/Road Rules Challenge'' (now known simply as ''The Challenge'' following ''RoadRules''' {{cancellation}}), which is a GameShow competition between past and present housemates from the shows.
* TreasureMap - although the cast was only given a clue to the next location after completing a task at the current one.
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