Author Topic: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide  (Read 278804 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline tpir04

  • Taking a Bonus Spin
  • *****
  • Posts: 895
  • Why, oh why?
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #165 on: August 30, 2019, 11:13:15 AM »
Something occurred to me while watching Money Game today: Am I correct in saying that if you, for some reason, know the exact price of the car, you should intentionally blow a few picks to get a couple hundred bucks in addition to the car?
CSS: Exacta, 6/3/2019
Season 15 cash earnings: $151,769
Season 16 cash earnings: $274,708 (+$31,284 scrimmage cash)
Season 17 cash earnings: $350,902
FPG: 2019-2020 Finals Champion
...............................

“People who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.” – Rob Siltanen

Offline LiteBulb88

  • 4/15/19
  • TPiR Alumnus
  • *
  • Posts: 1300
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #166 on: August 30, 2019, 12:10:56 PM »
Absolutely! You'd better be absolutely sure of the price of the car, though. But this could happen, if, for example, you find the last two numbers in your first pick. It should take no more than 3 picks to get the first two numbers, so you should pick the highest number left on the board in that case before you look for the first two numbers.

Offline gamesurf

  • Taking a Bonus Spin
  • *****
  • Posts: 896
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #167 on: August 30, 2019, 02:05:25 PM »
Absolutely! You'd better be absolutely sure of the price of the car, though.

Yeah, absolutely sure means absolutely sure—you’re risking a $20,000ish car for a $100ish cash prize. You need to have a 99.5% chance of winning for the gamble to make sense. That’s a high bar to clear, even if you have multiple picks left.

Unless you believe you have at least a 199-in-200 chance of being right—and if you’re not in the situation LiteBulb88 described, the only way you could ever be that sure is if you’ve seen that exact model with that exact option configuration before—the money shouldn’t even begin to enter your thoughts IMO.

That’s what makes El Cheapo an effective trick: if even 1% of your mind is thinking about the dollars instead of the car, you’re going to waste picks trying to run the score up. It’s only after they miss a few and shove the thoughts of the money aside do most people get the nerve to pick El Cheapo.
Quote from: Bill Todman
"The sign of a good game, is when you don't have to explain it every day. The key is not simplicity, but apparent simplicity. Password looks like any idiot could have made it up, but we have 14 of our people working on that show. There is a great complexity behind the screen. It requires great work to keep it simple."

Offline LiteBulb88

  • 4/15/19
  • TPiR Alumnus
  • *
  • Posts: 1300
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #168 on: August 30, 2019, 03:21:39 PM »
There's one other scenario I can think of, but you'd have to somewhat brazen to go for it: if you know you'd turn down the car (for example, you don't want to pay the taxes or try to sell it), then you might as well go for the four highest numbers on the board. The brazen part would be that if you found the last two digits with one of your first picks, going for numbers that clearly can't be the first two digits would not make Drew or the audience happy with you.

Offline JayC

  • Double Showcase Winner
  • ******
  • Posts: 5633
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #169 on: August 30, 2019, 11:09:14 PM »
It's not like the money in Money Game is anything close to significant though, so is it really worth just going for the money even if you have no interest in the car? It's not like Let em Roll where you could choose to walk away with several thousands of dollars rather than going for the car.

Online TPIRfan#9821

  • 4/23/20
  • TPiR Alumnus
  • *
  • Posts: 685
  • pain
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #170 on: August 30, 2019, 11:13:09 PM »
I mean, a couple hundred bucks isn't bad for four or five hours of waiting in line, so I'd say it would be worth it if and only if you don't want to deal with thinking about the car at all.
"If any show, forget sports, Price is Right, [the audience is] the star of the show. Somebody... coming on down and losing their minds, and ... crying, that's the show. The show isn't me, the show isn't necessarily [a] can of soup, how much that is, it's watching people go bananas, and there's going to be some of that missing."

-Drew Carey, interview with Athletic, September 16, 2020

HYO total winnings: probably like $500k + Canadian dollars

Real life winnings: $300 + $800 in gift cards

Offline LiteBulb88

  • 4/15/19
  • TPiR Alumnus
  • *
  • Posts: 1300
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #171 on: August 31, 2019, 05:46:16 AM »
Range Game

(Blog post: https://stoseontpir.blogspot.com/2019/08/the-ultimate-price-is-right-strategy_31.html)

Random fact
The rangefinder is manually controlled by a stagehand. Usually that stagehand behaves, but not always...


Win-loss record
  • Actual (seasons 29-47): 212-189 (52.87%)
  • What it would be by random chance: 1/4 (25%)
The price was how far from the bottom? (seasons 41*-47)
  • $0-$149: 0 playings (0%)
  • $150-$199: 3 playings (2.21%)
  • $200-$249: 17 playings (12.50%)
  • $250-$299: 54 playings (39.71%)
  • $300-$349: 34 playings (25%)
  • $350-$399: 18 playings (13.24%)
  • $400-$449: 9 playings (6.62%)
  • $450-$600: 1 playing (0.74%)
* I'm starting with season 41 because season 40 had some patterns that have not been repeated since--for example, the value of the prize was between $150 and $200 from the bottom of the range 12 times in that season.

The last two digits of the prize's value were...(seasons 41-47)
  • Between 00 and 24: 31 playings (22.79%)
  • Between 25 and 49: 29 playings (21.32%)
  • Between 50 and 74: 40 playings (29.41%)
  • Between 75 and 99: 46 playings (33.82%)
Strategy
Since no price is in the bottom $150, you should make sure the range moves up by $150 before you press the button. Beyond that, know the price, though if you're clueless, let the rangefinder move up $250 from the bottom before you press the button. There used to be a pattern where the last two digits were more frequently between 75 and 99 than the other options, but that has been changed in the last couple of seasons; in fact, there were only 3 playings in season 46 and 4 in season 47 where the last digits were in that range. Thus, a strategy like "make sure two multiples of $100 are covered by the range" is no longer any better than random chance.

Offline jhc2010

  • Double Showcase Winner
  • ******
  • Posts: 2042
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #172 on: August 31, 2019, 06:31:14 PM »
Has the Rangefinder always been controlled by a stagehand? They definitely added a small part to the base of the Range Game set in its later years to prevent the stagehand from being seen. The part is missing from the above video clip as it is from before this was added to the set. Anyone know what year it was added?

Offline SteveGavazzi

  • Director
  • **********
  • Posts: 17651
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #173 on: September 01, 2019, 12:15:50 AM »
The rangefinder was originally run mechanically.
"Every game is somebody's favorite." -- Wise words from Roger Dobkowitz.

Offline jhc2010

  • Double Showcase Winner
  • ******
  • Posts: 2042
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #174 on: September 01, 2019, 04:16:41 AM »
The rangefinder was originally run mechanically.
Do you think the above clip was a manual or mechanic playing?

Offline LiteBulb88

  • 4/15/19
  • TPiR Alumnus
  • *
  • Posts: 1300
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #175 on: September 02, 2019, 03:38:25 AM »
Rat Race

(Blog post: https://stoseontpir.blogspot.com/2019/09/the-ultimate-price-is-right-strategy_2.html)

Random fact
They once played this game for cash instead of a car; the prizes were $25,000, $50,000, and $100,000. You can see how the contestant did here:


Win-loss record (seasons 38-47): 40-68 (37.04%)

Which lane contained the winning rat? (seasons 38-47)
Note: the following list only counts playings where the race was actually run.
  • Lane #1 (the left most lane): 34 playings (32.38%)
  • Lane #2: 18 playings (17.14%)
  • Lane #3: 17 playings (16.19%)
  • Lane #4: 15 playings (14.29%)
  • Lane #5 (the right most lane): 21 playings (20.00%)
Which rat won? (seasons 38-47)
Note: the following list only counts playings where the race was actually run.
  • Blue: 17 playings (16.19%)
  • Green: 20 playings (19.05%)
  • Orange: 26 playings (24.76%)
  • Pink: 23 playings (21.90%)
  • Yellow: 19 playings (18.10%)
What were the values of each of the prizes? (seasons 44*-47)
* I'm choosing season 44 to start with because before that season, they sometimes had second prizes worth less than $30.
  • First prize: $1.49-$7.99
  • Second prize: $40-$90
  • Third prize: $110-$300
Strategy
Part 1: Prize pricing
  • First prize: For the first prize, your guess should be between $2.49 and $6.99, inclusive. Of course it's possible they could expand the range of prices of the prize, but the $7.99 item they used in season 47 was a full $1 more than any other first prize they had ever used, so I doubt they'll expand much further any time soon. Beyond that range, know the price.
  • Second prize: Your guess should be between $50 and $80 inclusive. Beyond that, know the price.
  • Third prize: Guess $200. They have never used a third prize that was strictly less than $100 or strictly more than $300.
Part 2: Which rats to pick
Pick the endpoints! As you can see, no color has a huge advantage, but one lane does. For whatever reason, the left most lane wins significantly more often than any other lane, so you should choose whatever rat is there. Then go for the right most lane. If you were good enough at pricing to have a third rat, choose your lucky color from the three rats in the middle.

Online TPIRfan#9821

  • 4/23/20
  • TPiR Alumnus
  • *
  • Posts: 685
  • pain
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #176 on: September 02, 2019, 11:25:10 AM »
^Technically, they played the game for cash twice. The other time was for #UDecide week for $100,000 ($75,000/$15,000/$10,000 for 1st/2nd/3rd).


I'm most surprised that wins are skewed toward the endpoints, since they explicitly say that the rats are chosen at from hundreds backstage. Did this trend extend to second or third place, or is it only for first?
"If any show, forget sports, Price is Right, [the audience is] the star of the show. Somebody... coming on down and losing their minds, and ... crying, that's the show. The show isn't me, the show isn't necessarily [a] can of soup, how much that is, it's watching people go bananas, and there's going to be some of that missing."

-Drew Carey, interview with Athletic, September 16, 2020

HYO total winnings: probably like $500k + Canadian dollars

Real life winnings: $300 + $800 in gift cards

Offline LiteBulb88

  • 4/15/19
  • TPiR Alumnus
  • *
  • Posts: 1300
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #177 on: September 03, 2019, 05:48:06 AM »
Thanks for the correction! I've updated my blog post and credit you. I agree about the surprise about the first lane being the quickest, though I don't think they always put the same rat there, so it may be something about the lane itself. Or it might just be a quirk of random chance. I don't know about the 2nd or 3rd place trends in Rat Race.

Offline LiteBulb88

  • 4/15/19
  • TPiR Alumnus
  • *
  • Posts: 1300
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #178 on: September 03, 2019, 05:49:42 AM »
Safe Crackers

(Blog post: https://stoseontpir.blogspot.com/2019/09/the-ultimate-price-is-right-strategy_27.html)

Random fact
This game has an unwritten rule: the price of the smaller prize ends in 0. This has been true in every playing of Safe Crackers since at least season 34.

Win-loss record (seasons 29-47)
  • Actual (seasons 29-47): 98-95 (50.78%)
  • What it would be by random chance if you follow the 0 rule: 1/2 (50%)
The correct price to choose was...(seasons 40-47)
  • The less expensive price: 32 playings (38.10%)
  • The more expensive price: 52 playings (61.90%)
Strategy
Start by remembering the 0 rule in this game--that narrows it down to 50/50. Then if you're not sure of which price to choose, there are two things that can help you out here:
  • The producers like to use the more expensive option. This means a price like $970 is more likely to be right than $790.
  • Listen to the amount the entire prize package is worth and do some mental math estimates. If the prize package is worth $8,900 and your choices are $790 or $970, then the price of the main prize must be either about $8,100 or $7,900. Depending on the prize, $7,900 sounds a lot more like a price for a prize than $8,100, which would make $970 the more likely option.

Offline LiteBulb88

  • 4/15/19
  • TPiR Alumnus
  • *
  • Posts: 1300
Re: The Ultimate Price is Right Strategy Guide
« Reply #179 on: September 04, 2019, 07:23:44 AM »
Secret X

(Blog post: https://stoseontpir.blogspot.com/2019/09/the-ultimate-price-is-right-strategy_4.html)

Random fact
While this is rarely stated by Bob or Drew, the three X's in a row to win the game must include the secret X. The contestant cannot win by placing three X's all in the left-most column or three X's all in the right-most column.

Win-loss record (seasons 29-47)
  • Actual (seasons 29-47): 132-120 (52.38%)
  • What it would be by random chance: 1/3 (33.33%) (This assumes the contestant doesn't do anything stupid, like put an X in the center row or place their first two X's in the same column.)
The correct guess for the small prize was...(seasons 40-47)
  • The more expensive price: 70 prizes (35.71%)
  • The less expensive price: 126 prizes (64.29%)
The secret X was in which square? (seasons 40-47)
  • Top square: 38 playings (38.78%)
  • Middle square: 51 playings (52.04%)
  • Bottom square: 9 playings (9.18%)
Strategy
Part 1: Small prize pricing
As you can see, the cheaper price is right almost 2/3 of the time, so if you're not sure, go for that one.

Part 2: Where to place the X's
As you can see, the producers like putting the secret X in the middle and really don't like putting it at the bottom. So place the X's in this order: top left, bottom right, and top right. Of course, any ordering where you first cover the middle square, then cover the top square will work. Just whatever you do, don't place an X in the middle row--believe it or not, that has happened.