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Lifespan: July 1984 - March 1990, January 1993 - June 1993
Host: Chuck Woolery
Announcers: Jay Stewart, Charlie Tuna
Produced by: Reg Grundy Productions

Front Game Rules

A contestant tries to solve a wordA total of four players competed, two in each go-round. The first round consisted of the players attempting to guess words of 5 to 9 letters by placing letters into the word. On each turn, the contestant drew two tiles from a pool. Three tiles bear letters that don't appear in the word - "Stoppers" - and if those letters are used, control passes to the other player. The first player to solve three words wins the round, $500, and goes on to the Sprint Round. Bonus money could be won by placing letters that went in the bonus pink or blue squares.

A Sprint Round in progressThe Sprint Round consisted of a fast-paced drill where the player attempted to guess four words of increasing length. For each word, the player chose one letter from two displayed, the letter was placed in the word (there were no Stoppers), and two more letters were offered. The player stopped the clock by hitting the plunger in front of them, but a wrong answer assessed a 10-second penalty. The first player set the time to beat in the Sprint Round, the second player tried to beat the time with the same four words. Whoever gets through with the fastest time wins $1000 and goes on to the bonus round.

End Game Rules

Will she get those two words in time?The bonus round was played just like the Sprint Round, with the contestant trying to solve two words (often 6 and 7 letters long, respectively) in under 10 seconds (meaning a wrong answer lost the round). If successful, the player won a jackpot that started at $5000 and grew by $1000 for each day it wasn't won. When the show returned in 1993, the bonus money began at $1000 and was added to by solving words on the bonus squares in the first round.

Loogaroo Looks it Over

This show, I believe, had the best writing in the genre. Even though Chuck would rail on the writers often as the show went on, these guys had some of the wittiest clues you could imagine. The game itself was able to revamp the board game entirely and create a concept that was livelier and more fast-paced than could ever be done if they tried holding true to the original game. Props are also due for having such an extensive sound library. Every episode uses 16 different sounds and stingers - easily the most on a game show from that era.

When the show returned in 1993, the actual gameplay was thankfully kept intact. Chuck Woolery was just as good of a host, even if he did look a little more tan and less formal. And personally, I don't see what all the fuss was about regarding the set. Yeah, the computer graphics were a little cheesier, but the actual set didn't look too bad. The unforgivable sin, however, was dropping the boney money and making the colored squares add to a jackpot that was absolutely dinky to start with. I sincerely hope that whoever was responsible for that change got a pink slip.

Scrabble ('80s version)

Gameplay: 3 pts.
Host: 3 pts.
Presentation: 2 pts.
Execution: 1 pt.
Total Score: 9 pts.

Scrabble ('93 version)

Gameplay: 3 pts.
Host: 3 pts.
Presentation: 1 pt.
Execution: 0 pts.
Total Score: 7 pts.

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