As if that weren't bizarre enough: I signed up - weeks ago - to play Fantasy Reality TV.
Go ahead, say something like "Fantasy Reality TV? What, like Fantasy Football? That is very, very strange." You're right, it's very, very strange - but CBS's site does indeed have a game. In fact, it has two separate games - Fantasy Survivor and Fantasy Amazing Race - and I've signed up for both. It was free and easy to do. You pick a starting lineup of four Survivor contestants and two Amazing Race teams, and gain or lose points based on a whole long list of criteria about winning or losing challenges and whatnot. After the new scores are posted each week (which supposedly happens by 6PM Pacific Time the day after each new episode is shown - in other words, the episode one scores aren't up yet as I'm typing this), you can swap out the players on your lineup, and some prizes will be awarded to the highest scores at the end of the season.
I thought this sounded like fun, but I also realize a few things...
- I'm going into this blind. If this was Fantasy Football or some other actual sport, I could pick my starting lineup based on each player's past statistics, but everyone here is totally new. While I can't speak for everybody, I just picked my starting lineup at random.
- I have to keep in mind, unlike an actual sporting event, Survivor and The Amazing Race aren't broadcast live. They're taped months in advance, and countless hours of footage are edited down to ten or so one-hour episodes. The producers and the people running the Fantasy games likely know exactly how to score the most points. They aren't telling, of course, but it's something to remember.
- I really have no chance of winning anyway. I'm competing against approximately 5,000 other people, and most of those people have probably watched Survivor and The Amazing Race for years.
So yeah. Like I said, it sounded like fun, and I'll give you an occasional update as the game progresses. The prizes, in case you are wondering...
- Survivor Grand Prize: The highest scoring player at the end of the season (ties are broken via a random drawing) will win a trip to the South Pacific and $500. They don't say where in the South Pacific.
- Survivor Weekly Prize: After each episode, the player (or players in case of a tie) who scored the highest out of the total points possible from that episode (and only that episode, making perfectly clear that people running the game know all this in advance) will be entered in a random drawing. The winner of said drawing will get a viewing party to watch the Survivor Finale on May 13 (yeah, as if I know people who'd want to go to one of those).
- Amazing Race Grand Prize: The highest scoring player at the end of the season (again, ties are broken via a random drawing) will win $1,000. Honestly, that sounds a lot more appealing than either Survivor prize to me.
I don't know...I'll keep you updated. The tribe has spoken, the world is waiting, etc..
UPDATE: As soon as I finished typing that, the Fantasy results for Survivor episode one were posted. I have 91 points. The leaders have 223 points. This is going to be one weird few months.