Debuting all the way back in 2003 at Anime Central, Press Your Luck is the second most frequently played game show on the Greggo’s Game Shows circuit, though not quite as frequently these days, relegated as to more of a special treat for conventions with large prize budgets. It’s one of the only game shows in the lineup that is strictly played as an anime-themed game due to the fact that the Whammies are anime and video game characters. It’s an exciting crowd-pleaser and a game that would be great to add for any event whose attendees skew slightly older than teenagers.
When it was announced during Match Game at ACen back in 2002 that I was attempting this game, Crispin Freeman nearly did backflips. Okay, that’s a slight exaggeration. But he was excited, and so were fans, as Press Your Luck would go on to be the second-longest running game show in my lineup, second only to Match Game. Both of which are still active today.
In 2010 at Oni-Con, a very observant contestant watched the board closely, found patterns that did not contain Whammies, and took us for over $300 in cash and prizes. I fixed the software after that so that there is ALWAYS at least one Whammy on the board. Like CBS did back in the 80s when Michael Larson parlayed his producers’ “gotcha,” footage from that show was quickly shoved under the carpet, never to be seen again. And never will be seen, because that footage was lost to a hard drive failure a few years back.
Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Nearly every game show panelist worth their salt has done a version of Press Your Luck at an anime convention since my debut in 2003, to varying levels of success. I got there first, but I’m certainly not the only one who got there.
This game requires 90 minutes including setup time. It requires the use of projector and screen (VGA/HDMI and minijack). A minimum of two microphones is requested (four is ideal). Stage layout includes one table for the contestants. A lectern may be provided as well. There are four onstage participants, and each will need a chair.
Preferred title for the schedule:
Greggo’s Game Shows: Anime Press Your Luck
Program book description:
Get ready, it’s time for the game show with lots of Whammies and lots of Big Bucks! Three players will answer questions to earn spins on our big board which is loaded with goodies, prizes and cash to spend in our prize coffers, but be careful! There are also some Whammies that would love to take everything away! Only the player with the most bucks at the end of the game gets to keep it all and maybe come back next year and do it again!
Prize support recommendation:
This game has the potential for huge payouts depending on the contestants’ luck. There are several named prizes on the board (small ones in the first round, larger ones including convention badges in the second round) and any “cash” won is to be spent in the prize coffers or presented to the contestant after the show. You can use your own prizes or, if you prefer, any amount won can be paid after the con and presented to the winner in a form of your choice (I prefer a Right Stuf gift certificate).