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The World’s 4 Best Game Shows in the 2000s

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The turn of the millennium gave rise to some of the greatest television game shows of all time. It’s not always a given that a new game show will prove an instant hit with viewers. In fact, the strike rate of successful offerings is quite low.

However, the following five game shows of the post-millennium era have stood the test of time and successfully remained a part of popular culture across the world.

Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?

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The fact that this quiz show is still relevant and popular today more than two decades on suggests that Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? is the number-one game show in the post-millennium era. Established in September 1998, contestants attempt to work their way up a prize ladder by answering a series of general knowledge questions, which get continually harder the more money you play for. Players get lifelines to use as they work their way up the ladder, with the chance to phone a trusted friend, use the general knowledge of the audience or even ask the host.

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Photo by Giorgio Trovato on Unsplash

The UK version was hosted by iconic presenter Chris Tarrant, while the US version has been hosted by Regis Philbin. It has been such a popular format that variations have been aired in over 160 countries, and it’s inspired board games, video games, as well as the book ‘Q and A’ (which is better known for its film adaptation ‘Slumdog Millionaire’) based on the cheating scandal in 2001. Its influence is everywhere and it’s still going strong.

Deal or No Deal

John de Mol Jr. is the Dutch media tycoon that founded Endemol, which was recently acquired by Banijay. De Mol Jr. was the brainchild of hit reality television formats such as Big Brother and The Voice. After the success of Big Brother, de Mol Jr. moved into television gameshows and devised the concept of Deal or No Deal, a simple yet adrenaline-fuelled game involving 25 boxes filled with different sums of money. Contestants pick one box to be ‘their’ box and their goal is to get an offer from the banker that’s worth more than the value of their box by removing low-value boxes from play.

This franchise lasted for 11 years in the UK alone, as well as eight years in total on four different US networks. It’s since been reimagined for the iGaming industry, bringing back a sense of nostalgia for online casino players worldwide. On the LuckyDice homepage, there is a link to a guide on how to play the live dealer version of Deal or No Deal, devised by iGaming technology pioneers Evolution Gaming.

Wipeout

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In 2008, Matt Kunitz and Scott Larsen devised a water-themed game show called Wipeout. It was marketed on ABC as inviting everyday contestants to tackle the world’s “largest obstacle course on water”. It ran for six years on ABC alone, before being rebooted at a later date on the TBS network. The course was based in Santa Clarita, California and stood the test of time for seven seasons and a whopping 130 episodes.

Who couldn’t get enough of people slipping and falling into the water and making fools of themselves?! In 2011, Indian TV network Imagine TV premiered their own version called Zor Ka Jhatka: Total Wipeout, presented by Bollywood icon Shah Khan and Saumya Tandon.

Fear Factor

Endemol’s US subsidiary was at the heart of this daredevil game show called Fear Factor. Inspired by the successful Dutch show Now or Neverland, Fear Factor contains elements of this Netherlands classic. It was first broadcast in 2001 on NBC, with UFC commentator and comedian Joe Rogan at the helm.

During the initial five seasons, the format of the show was three men and three women facing off against each other in a series of stunts, with the winner landing a grand prize worth $50,000. They spiced things up a little from the sixth season, whereby four teams of two players competed, with each team having to be boyfriend and girlfriend or husband and wife. So successful was this show that it had its own media franchise established.

This quartet of game shows has captured the imagination of millions of viewers worldwide. With technology advancing at speed, it begs the question: what will the next 20 years hold for family-friendly TV entertainment?

Read: This Pioneering Regional OTT has become profitable within 5 years

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Rahul Roy
Rahul Roy
I am a computer guy by profession and a sports fanatic by choice.

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