During the next 30 minutes, intuition can win our players $xx,000 in cash BECAUSE.....

It's time to challenge everybody's knowledge, it's time to...

Play the Percentages

Hosted by: Geoff Edwards

Syndicated, January 7, 1980-September 12, 1980

Special thanks to Brian Straley and Bill Johnston for the pictures and mp3 files. Also, thanks to Joey Wehmann for the wallpaper.

Check out some mp3s below!!

Play the Percentages underwent several format changes in its 8 month run, which may explain why it was so short lived.

Format#1- Main Game

Two couples competed. The object of the game was to guess the outcome of a survey. The questions in the survey were all general knowledge.

Geoff, reading the question

After the question was asked, both couples recorded their guesses.

This couple guessed 24% out of 100 knew the answer to the question

Whichever couple comes the closest gets the points (for example, if 45% got the question right, then the couple wins 45 points) and has the opportunity to answer the question or challenge their opponents to answer. If they challenge, and the opponents are wrong, the couple which challenged gets an additional 45 points, and then they have the opportunity to answer the question themselves for an additional 55 points (45+55=100%.) If the opponents get it right, then they win the points. 300 points won the game. If both players guess the same percentage, then both players must revote. If either couple hits the percentage on the nose, then that couple wins the game automatically.

The same couple guessed the percentage on the nose, won the game and a $36,000 JACKPOT!

NOTES: Originally, there was no bonus for guessing on the nose in the main game, but the couple still won the game automatically. The bonus jackpot was originally for the bonus game, which is explained below.

This main game format is really a variation of the Card Sharks toss up rounds, only the questions are general knowledge instead of human nature.

The Bonus Game- First format

A series of survey questions were asked to 100 people. The top 2 answers, plus one with no score were shown. The couple first sets a TARGET PERCENTAGE (any number but 0), and if any answer matches the target percentage, the couple won the bonus game, plus an accumulating jackpot. The couple is asked the first question and shown the 3 answers. They pick the response they think most people said. Geoff then reveals the percentage of one of the answers the couple didn't pick, then the percentage of the answer that was picked. (These percentages were all revealed on the lifesized percent sign, which was lifted from the studio floor for the bonus game) If the 0 is picked, then the couple loses the bonus game and everything accumulated. The couple can keep going till they score 100%

NOTES: The accumulating jackpot in the bonus game was dropped mainly because the large percent sign that was center stage had malfunctioned while being raised up, nearly ripping up the whole set.

Bonus Game- Variation 2

Identical to the first version, but this time the couple had to pick BOTH answers out of 3 if they didn't pick the most popular answer.

Bonus Game- Variation 3

This time, ONE survey question was asked, with six possible answers, one scoring 0. (The percentage points of all 5 answers totalled 100%) If the couple picked all 5 correct answers, they won the money.

This contestant's question was rather interesting. 300 women were surveyed, and asked to name a place they go to frequently even though they HATE going there

Main Game- Format 2

New intro: "This is the game where contestants determine the difficulty of the question. It's Play the Percentages!"

Geoff chats with the contestants

The format took a dramatic change about a couple months into the run. In this new format, 2 players competed. Each player chose a category for themselves before the show, and there was also a POTLUCK category. Players took turns wagering a percentage (this would be the percentage that got the question WRONG) from 10-100 points and answering questions. If the contestant answered correctly, then they won the points, otherwise their opponent could steal the points. The category for each round was chosen at random, and the category was changed every two questions.

If POTLUCK was picked, then it was a jump in question (later, ALL questions were jump ins).

Five rounds were played, and whomever scored 250 points won the game. If neither player scores 250, then a buzz in tiebreaker is played. Whomever buzzes in and answers wins the game.

Notes about solo format

There was no accumulating jackpot.

Geoff developed a "rapport" with the show's judge, whom he dubbed "Judge Von Erik".

"Judge Von Erik"

Whenever "Erik" interrupted Geoff over the loudspeaker (the judges on B&E shows were ALWAYS heard) Geoff always had a snappy comment or retort.

The second format, in some ways, was derived from "21"


Dan Enright, pictured here, not only co-produced Play the Percentages, he also handled the cue cards.

On one occasion Dan was distracted by other business and forgot to change the cue cards while Geoff was explaining the rules. Geoff told him, on the air, to "keep the cue cards moving." On the following show, Dan did JUST THAT. When Geoff was finished reading the first card, Dan passed the card along to another staff member, who in turn handed it to another staff member until the cue cards were handed to everyone in the entire studio! This was one of the funniest moments in the show's run.

Geoff with associate producer Ron Greenberg, whom was often targeted for his casual footwear

The Play the Percentages theme was later reused on Nipsey Russell's Juvenile Jury

MP3 files!

Geoff reads a question concerning an interesting name

One of Geoff's exchanges with Judge Von Erik. Geoff is taken by the contestant's beauty, but Erik has other things on his mind!

Judge Von Erik has made... A MISTAKE!

How many people knew the WHAT?