Match Game Wikia
Gene Rayburn
Johnny Olson
The Match Game 1962 Pilot.jpg
Pilot: 12/5/1962
The Match Game 1962.jpg
NBC Daytime: 12/31/1962–9/26/1969
NBC Studio 8H, New York City, New York
Mark Goodson-Bill Todman Productions

The Match Game is a game of judgment before the classic comedy version we know & love. 

Game Format[]

Two teams of three players (consisting of two civilian contestants & one celebrity team captain), competed in this early version which is a game of judgment. Host Rayburn read a question in which the possibilities are endless, plus they were not restricted to fill-in-the-blank types. All six players write down their answers on their cards and raised their hands to indicate that they're all done. Each player revealed their answers one player at a time and their objective is to match their teammates. For each match the team made, they scored 25 points (10 points for early in the run). If no match is made whatsoever, Gene reread the question and the players rewrite their answers (they can be the same or can be different). The first team to reach 100 points (making four matches & early in the run 10 Matches) wins the game & collects $100 and go on to play the Audience Match.

The Audience Match[]

In the Audience Match, the winning team attempted to match members of the previous studio audience. Host Rayburn asked three secret survey questions on each question, the team gave individual verbal answers that they think is the number one answer "The Best Answer" (they can agree or disagree on each other's answers). The contestants divide $50 for each player on the team they did give the #1 answer for a maximum of $150, so with the three questions, they can win up to $450.


The pilot is exactly the same as the series except that the scoring format is different. In the main game, each match is worth 10 points with 50 points (five matches) needed to win. The contestants on the winning team split $100. Each match made in the Audience Match is worth $25 for maximum of $75 on each question. four questions are all asked, so the maximum total is $300.


NBC Studio 8H, New York City, New York


“Swingin’ Safari” by Bert Kaempfert (1962-1967)

In 1967-1969, a new theme song is created by The Score Productions Band for the title game show "It's The MATCH GamE."


Nine home versions of The Match Game were made by Milton Bradley (six standard boxed editions, including a "Fine Edition", "Collector's Edition" and a "Briefcase Edition").

Episode Status[]

Only 11 episodes are known to survive: the pilot and ten kinescope recordings, all of which are archived at the Paley Center for Media. Nine of these are black-and-white kinescopes and one is a color episode (from 1969, and presumably also a kinescope).


The Match Game ('62) Pilot @