Balance Game (2000s)

Balance Game is a pricing game on the American television game show "The Price Is Right". It is played for a large prize worth at least $3,000. The game holds the distinction of being the series' 100th Pricing Game, and was the only new game to premiere during the 34th season.

Having debuted on February 6, 2006, this game should not be confused with a short-lived pricing game from the mid-1980s also called Balance Game.

Gameplay

The contestant is shown a prize and a large balance scale. The contestant is then shown four bags, each representing a different money amount. Three of the bags are multiples of $1,000. The contestant selects two of the three thousand-dollar bags, and the one three-digit (or sometimes two-digit) bag is automatically placed for them (for example, placing $1,000 and $6,000 bags with a $188 bag would make the contestant's bid $7,188).

A bag representing the amount of the prize's price, marked only with the name of the prize, is then placed on the right side of the scale; if the scale balances, the contestant wins the prize. If it doesn't balance, the contestant wins nothing.

The podium on which the "prize" bag rests at the start of the game contains a numeric 5-digit vane display. Until this bag is placed on the balance, it will display the contestant's bid. If the contestant loses, it will change to reveal the correct price.

History

When the game was introduced, the bags were purportedly filled with "Barker Silver Dollars", bearing the face of former host Bob Barker. Since his retirement, the coins have been replaced with "Drew Dollars", which are pieces of wood covered with paper to make them look like coins. While the staff has confirmed that the bags actually contain no coins, both Barker, and now Carey, show one real coin to the contestant at the beginning of the game.

The Barker Silver Dollars were the same ones used in the original Balance Game, and the first contestant who won the new Balance Game was given one of the coins as a souvenir; subsequent contestants were not offered a dollar. Carey has revived the custom of giving away a Drew Dollar as a souvenir.


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