|Merrill Heatter-Bob Quigley Productions|
"Today on (All-Star) Baffle, you'll meet (insert claim and celebrity name) playing against (insert claim and celebrity name)! And now, here's your host, Dick Enberg!"
(All-Star) Baffle was a short-lived daytime game show and a revival of the word game PDQ.
Just like in PDQ, the object of the game was to get your partner to say a word or a phrase by placing letters on a board. Only this time, you'd have to do it in a faster time than your opposing team.
Two teams of two (consisting of one celebrity & one contestant) competed in this year-long remake. As usual, one player was locked in an isolation booth while his/her partner stood in front of a rack filled with letters, which was now on a moving stand coming out of the team's letter board wall. When Enberg gave the signal, the clock started (it would dissappear after the first three seconds) and the outside player placed three letters on his/her board (with the first always being the first letter), and then the contestant took an unlimited number of guesses. Every few seconds, a bell would sound, signaling the outside player to add another letter while keeping all used letters clustered together. The outside player could also use gestures/charades to get the isolated player to say the answer.
NOTE: The first three letters used couldn't be the first three letters of the answer; if that happened, the team was assessed a 15-second penalty.
A team's half of the round ended when the isolated player got the answer, or if the clock reached the 60-second time limit. The first team set the time while the opposing team tried to beat the time. The team with the fastest time (including penalties, if necessary) won a prize for that contestant.
The game was played in two halves with three rounds each (later two) and the times set in each round were added together. At halftime, the contestants switched partners for the remainder of the game, and the team with the lowest total amount of time were the winners. Only the contestant of the winning team went on to play the bonus round.
The bonus round was also the same as PDQ, except that the winning contestant now had a time limit of 30 seconds to solve five puzzles. The puzzles still had three letters as clues, but there was no time limit for any of the puzzles. Each correct word was worth $50 and three bonus seconds of solving time for a maximum of $250 and 15 seconds. After getting through the first five words, the winning contestant used the time earned from guessing those words to solve a final word which was harder than the others. Solving the final puzzle won a brand new car for the contestant.
Contestants stayed on the show until they were defeated or won five games, regardless of how many cars won; at least one contestant won a car in all five games.
Starting on September 24, 1973, and going all the way to the end of the run, the show became an all star format where both teams consisted of nobody but stars.
The game remained the same except that in halftime, the celebrities swapped positions. Also since celebrities couldn't play the bonus game, the winning team drew a name of an audience member on a card out of a drum. The audience member selected played the bonus game for (a) bonus prize(s).
In the bonus game, the selected audience member had 30 seconds to solve (this time) nine puzzles. The number of correct answers determined the value of the prize that contestant took home (the higher the number of correct words, the bigger the prize). Eight correct answers won a car, but all nine correct answers not only won a car, but also a trip and $5,000 in cash.
NBC Studio 4, Burbank, CA
This was the first game show of any kind to have the use of neon lighting on a game show set. The set itself was designed by Jim Newton.
Baffle had the same premiere and cancellation dates as CBS' The $10,000 Pyramid.