Family Feud was an Australian game show based on the American show of the same name. It ran on the Nine Network from 1977–1984, and on the Seven Network from 1988-1996.
Representatives of the family are posed questions that have already been answered by 100 people. An answer is considered correct if it is one of the concealed answers on the game board, or judged to be equivalent. More points are given for answers that have been given by more people in the survey (one point per person). Answers must have been given by at least two of the 100 people in order to be included on the board. There are four members on each team.
Examples of questions might be “Name a famous George”, “Tell me a popular family vacation spot”, “Name something you do at school”, or “Name a slang name for policemen”. At least two people among the survey respondents must give an answer for it to appear as one of the possibilities.
The participants are not asked questions about what is true or how things really are. Instead, they are asked questions about what other people think is true. As such, a perfectly logical answer may be considered incorrect because it failed to make the survey (e.g.: for the question about Georges, George Jones was a popular country singer
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, but if his name was not given by at least two people it would be considered wrong).
Two opposing family members “face off” to see which family will gain control of that particular question. Sometimes, the host will read the question only once in the entire round if time is short. Traditionally, they greet each other with a handshake before the question is read
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. Whoever guesses the more popular answer in the survey has the option to play the question or pass it to the other family. If neither player gives a valid answer, the next member of each family gets a chance to answer, with control again going to the family giving the more popular answer. If both answers are worth the same amount of points, control goes to the player that buzzed in first.
The family in control can keep the question in which the family attempts to give all the remaining answers on the board, or pass to the other family. Starting with the next family member in line, each gets a chance to give one answer. Family members may not confer with one another while in control of the board. The family gets a “strike” if a player gives an answer that is not on the board or fails to respond. There is no firm time limit, but the host has the discretion to impose a three-second count if time is short or the contestant appears to be stalling. Three strikes cause the family to relinquish control of the board, giving the other family one chance to steal the points in the bank by correctly guessing one of the remaining answers.
In the 1977–1984 version, the entire family could confer before the answer was given. In the 1988–1996 version, each family member gave his or her opinion one at a time. The head of household could then either select one of those three or give his or her own. If the family guesses a remaining answer correctly, they receive the points accumulated by the other family.
After determining who takes the bank for a round, any remaining answers are then revealed. Per tradition, the audience yells each unrevealed answer in a choral response.
Three questions were played with the first two for single points and the third and final question for double. The first team to reach 200 points after the final question won the game. If, after the third round, neither team reached 200 points, another Double Points round would be played.
The winning family chooses two family members to play the round. One family member leaves the stage and is placed in an isolation booth, while the other is given 15 seconds to answer five questions. The clock begins counting down after the host finishes reading the first question. If he or she cannot think up an answer to a question
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, he or she may pass. A contestant may revisit a passed question at the end if time permits. If time runs out and all the questions have not been asked yet, they will still be in play as long as they have not been passed. The number of people giving each answer is revealed once all five answers are given or time has expired, whichever comes first. The player earns one point for each person that gave the same answer; at least two people must have given that answer for it to score. When revealing the number of people giving the same response, it is most commonly revealed with the phrase, “(Our) Survey said!”
Once all the points for the first player are tallied
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, the second family member comes back on stage with the first contestant’s answers covered and is given 20 seconds to answer the same five questions. If the second player gives the same answer as the first player on a question, a double buzzer will sound, and the host will ask for another response.
If one or both family members accumulate a total of 200 points or more, the family wins the top prize:
1977-1984: Prize package worth $8,000.
1988-1996: Prize package worth over $7,000 & a cash jackpot starting at $2,000 and increasing by $1,000 until won.
Championship families stayed for up to a maximum of five nights.