Game Shows: Before, During & After Covid-19

There has certainly been a resurgence in the genre (formats / unscripted) in the current situation, but the varieties of game show we turn to are always shifting and changing – influenced by fashions, broadcaster economics, the general mood, technology, and certain production practicalities, especially now. With audiences looking for escapist entertainment and buyers worldwide looking for shows which can be safely and economically made, the game show genre seems worthy of an in-depth look-at.

There does seem to be a clear consensus that, for now, game shows are going to tick a lot of boxes for buyers – even if the current situation does present some unique challenges.

Luckily for the TV industry, some of the sharpest brains in the business are those involved in developing game shows, and during quarantine, time saved on commuting, meetings and office chit-chat has been redirected towards creative problem-solving and devising.

Buyers have been at home too, and for a short time at least, this has meant a real opening up of cross-territory, virtual pitching of new ideas.

Ironically, despite the lack of markets, travel and face-to-face meetings, international creativity, conversation and pitching is perhaps more feasible, and active, than it has ever been.

This fact may also have a direct impact on the types of shows being developed and pitched – particularly in the game show arena, where concepts are notoriously difficult to convey succinctly without a visual hook, or some form of interaction and gameplay.

At this point, a lot of the creative conversations are going to be driven by production practicalities, and what is feasible under current and rapidly changing guidelines.

How to Win At Game Shows in a Post-Covid World

  • Prepared Earlier
  • Reflect The Mood
  • Start By Future-Proofing The Familiar
  • Scale It All Down A Bit
  • Do It Without A Studio Audience
  • Use Green Screen Or CGI Effectively
  • Take The Chance To Experiment With Remote
  • Play-along… But Don’t Rush The Technology
  • Be Inspired By The Constraints

The Key Gameshow Trends & How Covid-19 Will or Won’t Affect Them

  • Musical Guessing Games
  • Standing In For Sports: Funny, Physical & Supersized
  • Kids Games
  • The ‘Human Experiment’ Games
  • Diverse Twists
  • ‘Last Man Standing’ Whittle-Down
  • Beat The… Channel/ Host/ Celebrity / Sponsors
  • Best Of The Best: Celebrations, Revivals And
  • ‘Ultimate’ Tests

For an in-depth look at gameshows’ strengths and successes, click here to download the full PDF.

Got a great idea?

Click here to enter the ATF Formats Pitch 2020!