CONCENTRATION (Unsold pilot)
Tape date: 1985
Host: Orson Bean
Announcer: Gene Wood
Two players competed. A board of twenty-five squares was shown. Under the squares are words followed by a piece of a rebus puzzle. On their turn, a player selected two squares. If the words behind the squares were related (Ex: TUNA and FISH, COLOGNE and PERFUME) then they won $100 and saw the pieces of the puzzle below. They could guess the puzzle if they wished. If they did not guess, they picked again. One "wild" card was on the board, and it matched anything. If the words selected did not relate to each other, the other player got control. Once the puzzle was solved correctly, that player won their cash and a chance at the bonus game.
In the bonus, the contestant played against a 15-square board. Seven pairs of prizes were hidden behind the cards as well as one prize that did not match. The player called out two numbers and the clock started at fifty seconds. A match earned that prize. If they matched all seven prizes in time, they won $5,000. Should they fail, the next player to try gets ten more seconds.
The theme used would go on to be the "Classic Concentration" theme.
Although Orson Bean was a panelist on many game shows including "To Tell the Truth" and "Match Game" this was his only attempt at hosting a series.
It's good to hear Mark Goodson Productions wanted "Concentration" back on the air in '85. However, overhauling the prizes in the main game was a bad idea. Orson is a bad host, although he is personable with the contestants. The bonus game also goes a bit slow because Orson announces what's behind the square after the contestant calls it.
Cast - 0.5
Game - 1.0
Bells and Whistles - 1.0
Prize - 1.5
Tilt - 0.5
Really could've been better if the main game used prizes.