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Jasmine’s The Price Is Right Strategy Guide: Cover Up

Hi there, I’m Jasmine. We continue our look at pricing games on The Price Is Right with another frequently played game, Cover Up.

Cover Up is played for a car. You are given two choices for the first digit of the car’s price, three for the second, and so on, to six choices for the fifth digit. In the first round, you fill in a guess for the price from the available digits. You are then shown which digits are correct. If none are correct, you lose. If all are correct, you win. Otherwise, you may play a second round and cover up the incorrect digits with new guesses. As before, you lose if none of the digits you placed in the second round are correct, you win if they are all correct, and you get a third round otherwise. This process continues, for up to five rounds, until a win or a loss is achieved.

Cover Up was introduced in 1993, on the first show of the 22nd season. Since then, it has come up fairly often, around twenty times per season, once every two weeks. It is a difficult game; it is won about 33% of the time, and its all time best record in a season was 10-10 in the 44th season in 2015-6.

Still, there is one thing you can do to improve your odds: get a digit wrong.

Cover Up is unique amongst the pricing games in that you can earn more than two chances. Some games, like One Away and Line Em Up, will tell you how many digits you have correct and give you a chance to correct them. But in Cover Up, as many as five rounds can be played, giving you up to five chances to guess the correct digits. How, then, do you maximise the number of guesses?

Well, luckily, I don’t have to figure out a strategy for you, because that has been done already. The Game Show Central site, now defunct, reported the appropriate strategy for this game. With apologies, we will discuss that method here.

Based on the car model, you can usually guess what the first two digits will be. So all you have to do is get one of the first two digits wrong in the first round. Then, when you correct that digit in the second round, you will earn yourself a third round. I’d suggest getting the second digit wrong, in case your estimate of the car’s price is off by a few thousand dollars.

There aren’t really any hints I can give you about the other digits, except that car prices on The Price Is Right don’t often end in zeroes or fives. The producers like to put zeroes or fives – or both – in the last column, but you should avoid the temptation to guess them.

So now that you know how to play Cover Up, shall we try it out? Below, we have randomly selected a five digit number. Simply click on your guesses for each digit and see if you are successful.

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