A family Game Show
aired by The Hub
which is supposed
to be its flagship program (well, they probably didn't think that My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic
was going to take off as much as it did; although an episode of FGS
does appear as a bonus feature on the "Adventures in Ponyville" DVD). In this show, families compete in adaptations of Hasbro board games (which makes sense
given who owns the channel) to try and earn a chance at cash and prizes.
Games we've seen include:
- Guess Who?: The toss-up game, played much like the "Fame Game" questions from Sale of the Century. Todd gives clues as to the identity of a celebrity or fictional character, and the first team to buzz in with the correct answer wins the right to go first or second in the first game. Was demoted in Season 2.
- Bounce 'n' Boogie Boggle: Played on a grid styled much like a Big Boggle board, the teams must spell words by jumping from square to square. As with its source, words must be at least three letters long and all letters must connect in some direction.
- Bop-It Boptagon Played in a octagon with giant props, additionally having to cycle through the stations when prompted, eliminating people who make a mis-step. Last person standing wins it for their family.
- Connect Four Basketball: ...With the "pieces" replaced by balls that are thrown into the chutes on top.
- Cranium: On-the-buzzer puzzles themed around content from the game. Retired after Season 2.
- Guesstures Free Fall: Essentially charades, but with the clue givers suspended over a "pit" and "dropped" if the guessing family member passes. The format plays somewhat like Pyramid in that the object is to get as many as possible in two minutes.
- Operation Relay: Much like its source, the teams use tweezers to get as many pieces from Cavity Sam as possible within two minutes. Getting buzzed sends you to the back of the line, while getting a piece means you have to navigate a short obstacle course for the points.
- Operation Sam Dunk: A skee-ball game with Sam's cavities as the holes, and a bell target for double points. Replaced "Relay" after Season 1.
- Scrabble Flash: It's the crossword game you've played all your life...but not quite like that. Teams make words (3-5 letters) using five huge electronic letter tiles, with points awarded based on the length of each word.
- Sorry! Sliders: Each team pushes its two giant-sized pawns into one of four rings for points (from outside to inside, Sorry!-1-3-5). Like shuffleboard, teams can hit their opponents' pawns to change the score.
- Sorry!: Replaced the above after Season 2. One team member dresses in a pawn costume, while another pulls cards with numbers on them to advance around a board, earning whatever money they land on and a special prize for reaching the end. If they draw a Sorry! card, the pawn must go back to start, all money is lost, and pulling another Sorry! card ends the game.
- Twister Lights Out: ...With the dots on a video board on the floor. The dots begin to disappear as play goes on, and last member standing wins the round. Combination of Twister and Lights Out, the latter an electronic game by Hasbro subsidiary Tiger Electronics.
- Yahtzee Bowling: ...Because the "dice" are six-sided bowling pins. Each team has three chances to knock down the pins with a bowling ball and make the best hand (One Pair, Two Pairs, Three-of-a-Kind, Small Straight, Full House, Large Straight, Four-of-a-Kind and the titular Yahtzee). In season 3, it is now played solo, and the different hands now have prizes attached to them.
For Seasons 1-2, two families competed per episode, and "Crazy Cash Cards" were earned for each victory. At the end of the show, they were inserted into a Crazy Cash Machine to reveal their values and spit out a bunch of Monopoly
money. While most were worth from $100 to $995 (in $5 increments), at least one was worth between $1,000 and $5,000. But one
card out of those 21 was the Top Cash Card, which if inserted would break the Ba
an amount from $7,500 to $25,000. Both teams kept all cash and prizes, but the team with more money got a bonus vacation.
Season 3 changed up the format: families (one or two, depending on the game) are now called from the audience Price Is Right
-style to play one of four games per episode for prizes. Each of the participating families (or the winner in two-team games) then choose a card containing a combination, hopefully containing the one that opens the Community Chest and allow them to advance to a revised Crazy Cash game for a chance to win a car.
- All Or Nothing: Averted, since everyone keeps any cash and prizes won.
- Bonus Round: Season 3 adds a proper bonus round, the Crazy Cash Machine, which has shades of a game from the current Let's Make a Deal. There are 16 Crazy Cash cards arranged in a 4x4 grid. The winning family picks a single card from each row to reveal cash, and hopefully avoid the increasing number of Go to Jail cards also hidden among them (they end the game, but allow the family to keep their prizes). If the family manages to pick the one "WIN" card in the final row (a 1 in 4 chance), they also win a new car.
- Golden Snitch: Due to how the old bonus round was played, a team who loses all five games can still have the Top Cash Card from that 1/21 shot at the beginning of the game. As both families kept their cash and prizes, and "winning" only added an additional prize like a vacation, this point may have been moot.
- Home Game:
- The rounds are based off games you've played all your life, but never quite like this! * Scrabble Flash and Sorry! Sliders were released some time before the show's debut, although they're quite normal-sized.
- The show gets its name from a a promotional campaign Hasbro uses to market its board games, which also spawned a series of compilation video games of the same name.
- The Family Game Night 4 game is actually based off the show itself.
- The Announcer: Burton Richardson (no stranger to the genre) for Seasons 1-2. Stacey J. Aswad replaced him at the beginning of Season 3.
- Game Show Host: Todd Newton, also no stranger to the genre. It gave him his first "Best Game Show Host" Emmy following Season 2.
- Product Placement: It's essentially a 60-minute commercial for Hasbro board games.
This show provides examples of:
- Colour Coded Multiplayer: The first two seasons had one red team and one yellow team, their shirts colored accordingly. In season 3, the families in the audience wear matching colored shirts; they wear either red, blue, orange, or green.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: After all, where else could you hear "Pull it!" and "Whack it!" over and over (during the Bop It round) on a family-oriented game show? Oh, and Stacey Aswad.
- Luck-Based Mission:
- While the original format gave the advantage of having more Crazy Cash Cards at the end of the show for each game you won, each card had a different, unknown amount of money attached to it. Moreover, each team got a card at the start of the game, meaning that a team could have fewer cards but still win if the values were large enough.
- Yahtzee Bowling.
- The re-designed Crazy Cash round for Season 3.
- Spin-Off: Scrabble Flash was removed from the game rotation for Season 2, mainly because it got moved to another show.
- Spiritual Successor: To the 1964–65 Merrill Heatter–Bob Quigley children's game Shenanigans, hosted by Stubby Kaye and just as heavily sponsored by Milton Bradley. The presence of Operation may or may not be an intentional Call Back, as it's the only game they share.