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Two of the contestants pretty much ran over the third who barely got to answer any questions. The two went into Final Jeopardy almost tied with around $20,000. Third had $6200. The third place contestant new the answer and wagered $1200. The other two wagered almost all and missed the answer. The third place contestant won.
Let's talk FJ betting strategy, AKA second place person is an idiot. Let's call them One, Two, Three.

One & Two are close in money, both $20,000+. You know One is going to bet all/most of his money. One has to make sure he wins if he gets FJ correct. Therefore Two only needs to bet enough to pass One if One misses and Two is correct. So if One has $21,000 and Two has $20,000, Two should bet $1,001. This betting strategy has the additional benefit that if you BOTH miss, Two will only drop a little while One loses his rear-end.

This is a universally accepted strategy, and has been proven to be effective over the years. There are four outcomes for FJ and One/Two--(a) both right, (b) both wrong, (c) One right, (d) Two right. It is a given that a & c will lead to Two losing. But if Two follows this betting strategy, he can win under b & d. Whereas if he doesn't he will only win under d.

So whaddaya know--"b" happened and Two lost with a stupid all-in bet. And Three ended up winning!

I'm continually amazed how little Jeopardy contestants know about betting strategy. It can make the difference between winning & losing.
 

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What continually surprises me is that more contestants don't bet to tie. In your example, why not bet $1000 instead of $1001? If they tie, they both come back.
There was a game sometime within the last few years where two people had the same amount going into FJ, and they both bet -0-. Smart tactic, especially when you consider they supposedly couldn't discuss betting strategy before FJ.

Guaranteed to play the next day!:up:
 

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I'm continually amazed how little Jeopardy contestants know about betting strategy. It can make the difference between winning & losing.
And it happened again today. Here were the stakes going into FJ:

1st: $15,000
2nd: $14,800
3rd: $7,200

All 2nd needs to do is bet $200 or more. Instead he goes all in, betting almost all of his wad. And of course, 1st bets a ton, needing to stay ahead should they both get it. 3rd bets a modest amount.

All three miss, a triple stumper. 3rd ends up winning.

Another game given away. Honestly, 2nd doesn't deserve to win. If you don't understand how to bet, or make an effort to learn before you play, I have no sympathy for you.
 

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I saw a taping about 15 years ago. The show is taped in real time till they get to Final Jeopardy. They stop taping at that point and bring out consultants to work with each contestant to figure out how much to wager. I'm not sure if the consultants suck or if they only have the leeway to make sure the contestants don't screw up big time.
I wonder if they still do that any more. I'm active in a Jeopardy forum, where there are many former (and current!) players posting. No one has ever mentioned this. Ever.

I'm going to guess they no longer do this.
 

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Here is a reply from one of the contestants on that episode. Talk about "from the horse's mouth".:up: She was the current champion, and was in first place at FJ. She was not the one who made the bet I am referring to, that was the 2nd place contestant.

No, there weren't any consultants to "help" us. I will admit I did need a little help during one of the episodes, maybe it was Thursday's. They tell you to write down "What is" and then they give you some scratch paper to figure out your bet. So I'm figuring and then when we're all done figuring, they have us write it on the screen. I'm a little number dyslexic and I write down this number. They come over and say "You don't have that much money!" So I write the number down again. "You wrote the same number!" They finally had to write the amount I wanted on a piece of paper and hand me the paper so that I could copy the number down exactly as they had it written. (Is it any wonder I got fired as a bank teller?) :lol:
 

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FJ has 8 permutations of correct/incorrect responses. I'd make my bet on the assumption that opponents with more money will be incorrect and bet $0 and those with less will be correct and bet all.
I'm not sure I totally understand what you said, but nonetheless, there are accepted betting standards based on what most people do. Obviously not everyone follows common sense, and sometimes an odd betting strategy pays off. But years of study (and believe me, hard-core Jeopardy fans are nothing if not statistic oriented:rolleyes:) have shown that using certain strategies pays off for more often than not.

One wrench can be the category, and your general feel for how you will do, versus your opponents. This is where the odd betting strategies I mentioned above can come into play.

But hey, that's why we still play the game.
 

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I suspect that there is stuff going on behind the scenes that we don't know about.
Absolutely not. Anything we don't see has no affect on the game.

There is a studio audience, they see everything. And if you read the Jeopardy forum (jboard), it is full of former & current contestants. They give lots of behind the scene fill in the blanks, but it's all innocuous.

Nothing goes on that isn't innocent. See my post above, #28. That's the only kind of BtS going on.
 

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OK, so I went back to your original strategy. I get where you are coming from. But, it seems like you are giving equal weighting to each of the 4 scenarios above. I am guessing (purely a guess) that A happens more often (both right). In this case, ONE needs to make sure to bet enough to cover an all-in bet by TWO.
I am not referring to how ONE should bet, which is what you are talking about here. I am *only* referring to the TWO bet. What ONE should bet is also well-known, and followed 90%+ of the time.

And whether the results are weighted or not doesn't matter. I already said if "A" happens TWO will lose. Same with "C". It's only B & D where betting strategy comes into play. And in "D", any reasonable bet wins. But under "B", you will only win if follow the universally accepted practice I originally described. There is an infinitesimally remote downside, versus a guaranteed upside.

All your permutations about who bets bigger or smaller don't matter, unless someone bets arky-*****, with no reason at all. That does happen on occasion (I think it happened Wed of this week), but honestly, it's so rare to see a 1st place person bet non-standard, that to try to figure that into your bet becomes, well... it's the endless loop you describe.:D
 

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"The title princess of this game, which launched a best-selling franchise was named for F. Scott Fitzgerald's wife."

Please, grammar police, please help!
FJ will always make a reference to what they are looking for. In this case. see the bold red part. THIS GAME. You need to give the name of the game.

This happens with some regularity. A contestant will write down something that is part of the question, but is not the exact part they are looking for.
 

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I also want to note that without having to come up with the title of the game, the question becomes "name F. Scott Fitzgerald's wife," which isn't Final Jeopardy!-level information, it's more like top-to-middle-board in the first round.
I agree. The fact that all three came up with Zelda (and probably quickly) tells you it was too easy. That two of three answered incorrectly, but the same way, tells you it was worded awkwardly. A true J aficionado would catch it, but the average player wouldn't (and didn't).
 

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I just re-watched Friday's FJ question again.

Trebak did emphasize "this" when reading the question. It was still a pretty subtle emphasis, but I guess that makes the difference in Jeopardy.
Just to be picky, the verbal emphasis has nothing to do with the correct answer. The wording of the clue, "this game", is all any contestant needed to give the proper answer.

Trebek's emphasis may be to help the players, but one can play Jeopardy with the sound off and still solve every clue.

Well... except for the audio clues.:D
 

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It's a very subtle nuance.

I think either answer can be correct. What you are saying that "Zelda" is just too easy. I thought the answer was "Zelda", but I also thought of the name "Legend of Zelda" while thinking about it. I never once suspected they wanted the name of the game.
It is subtle, but Jeopardy is very specific in how they phrase the answers. And since the two that answered "Zelda" missed, either answer is *not* correct.

To side track even further...
I missed a few eps last week, so I don't know if the guy is still on, but the current champion is a world class a-hole when it comes to picking answers. Most people go from the top to the bottom, but not this guy. Give me this for 800, give me that for 400, give me this for 1000.
That style of random order picking gets on my last nerve when watching the show.

I hope he lost last week. I didn't like him one bit. Although he did seem to hit the double-jeopardy squares very early and often using that annoying style.
First, let me agree. It drives me absolute ape-sh*t when people do that. Part of my OCD makeup, I suppose.:rolleyes:

Having said that... people do it for the very reason you mention, they are hunting the DD's. Getting them out of the way eliminates the possibility of a competitor using it to zoom past you.

Still drives me nuts though. STOP IT! :D Oh, and he finally lost.
 

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Ken Jennings rarely got a Final Jeopardy. I think the only times he did were the very rare occasions when he didn't go into FJ safe (with more than twice #2's total).
I'm not sure this is correct. I do know he was a lock on 65 out of 75 shows, which is incredible. But that doesn't mean he didn't get most of those 65 locks correct.

But I can't find this out from searching, so I don't know this for a fact.
 

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It did seem too easy. But I suppose if there had been a contestant who absolutely knows nothing about geekazoid TV shows and British cultural icons, it's possible they might have missed it. While I got it in .03 seconds, my wife had NO clue what they were asking about.

Notice they used "this show's anniversary" in the clue. It's always the word THIS that clues you in as to what they want.

They probably would accept DR or Doctor. In FJ, they will accept mistakes in spelling if the intent or pronunciation you are going for is clear. Slightly different rule than in the game itself.
 

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One of the things that I think has changed sometime in the last 20 years is the requirement for first and last name. I thought the rule used to be in Jeopardy you could use only the last name, but in Double Jeopardy you needed both first and last. Now they seem to accept just the last name unless answering with only the last name is ambiguous.

Anybody recall?
Generally, if the last name is enough to clearly question the answer, they will accept it. "He discovered gravity. Who is Newton?" will work.

But if the judges don't think it's sufficient, they usually give you a quick chance to elaborate. But if you don't instantly jump in with "Who is Albert Newton?", they will bzz you.

And in FJ, you need to be certain a single name will suffice, as you get no second chances. They don't always require a full name in FJ, if a single name is clear. But if it's not, you are dead meat.

"This president declared war against Canada." If you answer Johnson, you are out, as it's not clear which Johnson you meant. Whereas if you answer Nixon, it would be accepted.
 

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Damn. Where was I when Nixon declared war on Canada? :)

I was thinking that they may have eased up the rules about needing a first name. I do understand the current rule. Is it possible that it changed or is my memory a bit fuzzy?
We'll need Trainman to answer that. Even though he claims he's in his 30's, he seems to know an awful lot about Jeopardy from 40 years ago.

:D
 

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There is a light around the board that TV viewers can't see. You can only (properly) buzz in once it's lit up, and it lights up the instant he finishes reading. Buzz in too early, you are locked out just long enough for someone else to buzz in.

So yeah, buzzer management is a key skill to master.
 

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Kind of makes sense, though. If you allow a minor misspelling, then where do you draw the line between that and a larger misspelling. Would it be OK if the contestant spelled something phonetically? I think a hard-line rule of "the answer has to be spelled right to be right" is really the only sensible way to deal with something like that.

Although Trebek could have been less of an ass about it. Admittedly, the answer looks all kinds of wrong when you just glance at it, but there was only one extra letter in there, and the judges had clearly had time to look it over and make a decision.
FJ has different rules than regular Jeopardy. They will allow misspelling, as long as the word is otherwise correct. So phonetically is generally allowed. But if the misspelling creates a different word--emanciptation is not emancipation--then it will not be accepted.

So if the answer is "John Deere", they would allow "John Dear".
 

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But "emanciptation" isn't "another" word because it isn't a word.
What I meant is it's not the actual word, phonetic or not. It's another word, regardless of whether that word actually exists. You're being petty, the point is it's the wrong word.

Here's a comment from the Jeopardy forum, that I think covers it well...

J! is very consistent about the FJ spelling rules. ("Bejamin Franklin".) They can't start bending the rules for "close enough" for two reasons. One, there is a Standards and Practices department that makes sure the game is fair -- which includes enforcing the rules evenly -- and two, when you give a player in a three player game credit for an incorrect answer, you are being unfair to the other two players.

Recently in a knowledge competition, an official ruled one team correct for answers of "Steven Hawkings" and "A Midsummer's Night Dream" in one game. Close enough? Sure they are. But they are also (according to the rules of the game) incorrect, and the other team felt like they had been treated unfairly.
Could Alex have been kinder in his reaction? Sure. But the kid was still wrong.

No one commenting on the winner's bet? He risked a Clavin!:eek:
 
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