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Top 10 Children's Game Shows

VO: Rebecca Brayton
Script written by Nick Spake These are the game shows that broke all the rules. Join WatchMojo.com as we count down our picks for the Top 10 Children's Game Shows. For this list, we're taking a look at the most original and influential game shows geared towards kids that still stick with us as adults. Special thanks to our users AlmightyToonGod and Kendall Ralston for submitting the idea on our Interactive Suggestion Tool at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Script written by Nick Spake

Top 10 Children's Game Shows


These are the game shows that broke all the rules. Join WatchMojo.com as we count down our picks for the Top 10 Children's Game Shows.
For this list, we’re taking a look at the most original and influential game shows geared towards kids that still stick with us as adults.

#10: “Uh-Oh!” (1997-2003)

The concept of “Uh-Oh” derived from a game show satire on the Canadian children’s variety series, “It’s Alive!” As this parody grew in popularity, it evolved into an actual game show, making the appropriately titled “Uh-Oh” one of the best accidents ever. Excluding commercial breaks, “Uh-Oh” never stopped for a breather as contestants engaged in nonsensical games like Speed Round and Mayhem. Oh, and let’s not forget the Slime Tour. The only thing zanier than the challenges was the host, Wink Yahoo, a live-action cartoon character if ever there was one.

#9: “A*mazing” (1994-98)

With children from different schools competing against one another, “A*mazing” consisted of a guessing game where participants typed their answers out on a giant keyboard and played video games that spanned three console generations. Seriously, this was probably the biggest plug for Nintendo since “The Wizard.” The maze was by far the show’s highlight, however, taking kids across diverse locations such as the desert and the pirate’s cove. Even more stimulating than a day at an amusement arcade, this Australian game show was called “A*mazing” for more than one reason.

#8: “Wild & Crazy Kids” (1990-92; 2002)

Remember when your school would have field days with outdoor activities? This Nickelodeon game show was like that - only wilder and crazier, as the title suggests. “Wild & Crazy Kids” would typically take a traditional sport and put a unique spin on it. For example, isn’t combining football with swimming so much more enthralling? Wht about playing with frisbees that are covered in pudding? The best episodes were always the ones where the kids were taken on field trips to theme parks like Raging Waters and Magic Mountain. Whether your team won or lost, everybody was guaranteed a good time.

#7: “Fun House” franchise (1989-99)

Picture a McDonald’s playground crossed with Pee-wee’s Playhouse and you’d get something along the lines of “Fun House.” This game show was initially conceived in the US, but inspired a British remake of the same name, which kept the party going for eleven seasons. Both versions were comprised of the essential ingredients for great children’s television, being wacky, crazy, outrageous, and of course, fun. With no shortage of inventive obstacle courses, races, and games, “Fun House” totally raised the roof.

#6: “Nickelodeon GUTS” (1992-95)

Even if you were a couch potato without an athletic bone in your body growing up, part of you desperately desired to compete in “Nickelodeon Guts.” Why? Because the show took all the sports you’d played in gym class and made them a million times more extreme. Who wouldn’t want to play a game of aerial archery or climb the friggin’ Crag? We’ll gladly take a glowing piece of the radical rock over an Olympic gold medal any day. Plus, “Guts” was a breakthrough gig for character actor Mike O’Malley.

#5: “Knightmare” (1987-94)

This British game show was essentially “Dungeons & Dragons” brought to life. It even had a dungeon master by the name of Treguard. The series allowed kids to become daring knights and challenge the virtual dungeons of Castle Knightmare. Along the way, they’d use teamwork to solve puzzles, cast spells, and get past numerous colorful characters. For a children’s game show, “Knightmare” was surprisingly sophisticated in tone with everybody involved taking the material pretty seriously. It’s like a trip to the Renaissance Fair, only infinitely more magical.

#4: “Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego?” (1991-95)

Unlike most children’s game shows that had little nutritional value, “Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego” was one of the rare series that educated kids in an entertaining fashion. With an eccentric cast of characters like the Chief, Greg Lee, and a Rockapella group providing guidance, the show sent gumshoes on missions to locate various thieves. The young detectives would have to use their knowledge of geography to decipher clues and catch the crook. Whatever the destination, you could always count on hearing that catchy as hell theme song.

#3: “Nick Arcade” (1992)

While video games have become significantly more advanced since 1992, “Nick Arcade” still provided the ultimate experience for diehard gamers. Instead of advertising real games like in “A*mazing,” “Nick Arcade” developed several original titles such as “Laser Surgeon” and “Crater Rangers.” Contestants also got to explore diverse areas like Pirate’s Cove and Cape Cosmos. Then if you leveled up to the Video Zone, true gaming masters could literally step into a game and take down the Game Wizard. Everyone at home, meanwhile, had to settle for playing the Virtual Boy.

#2: “Double Dare” (1986-93; 2000)

If you dared us to cover our mom in pizza toppings, throw vegetables into our brother’s pants, and undergo the greatest obstacle course in the history of television, we’d jump at the opportunity in a heartbeat. Of course getting our family on board may prove difficult. If an OCD person like host Marc Summers could take a pie in the face like a champ, however, anybody can face the super sloppy challenges in “Double Dare.” Messy, ridiculous, and strangely creative, it epitomized everything that made Nickelodeon pretty much the #1 kids network.

Before we show our top pick what fabulous prizes it’ll be taking home, here are a few honorable mentions:
- “Figure It Out” (1997-2000; 2012-13)
- “Finders Keepers” (1987-89)
- “Make the Grade” (1989-1991)
- “What Would You Do?” (1991-93)

#1: “Legends of the Hidden Temple” (1993-95)

Hosted by Kirk Fogg, “Legends of the Hidden Temple” encompassed all the imagination and excitement of an “Indiana Jones” adventure, pushing the limits of how epic a game show could be. It was every ‘90s kids dream to don one of the six colored uniforms, meet the likes of Olmec, and venture into the Hidden Temple to unearth lost treasures. Although not every contestant walked away with Galileo’s cannonball or King Tut’s cobra staff, our fond childhood memories of this awesome game show are the true treasures. That’s no secret.

Do you agree with our list? What’s your favorite children’s game show? For more entertaining Top 10s published every day, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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