- Place the BGT Machine in the centre of the board
- Place the Talent Cards in a pile near the board.
- Each player chooses a coloured playing piece and places it on the START segment of the board.
- In these rules the person whose turn it is, is called 'the performer'. Their effort to entertain the judges is called 'the performance'.
- After each performance play passes to the left.
Each Talent Card lists three 'talents' on each side. The top one is the easiest and the bottom one is the hardest. Each 'talent' has a SKILL rating from 1 up to 3 and a target TIME of either 20, 40 or 60 seconds. These are represented by the symbols on the top right-hand corner of each card. The higher the skill level and the longer the target time, the higher your possible score can be.
The BGT Machine
The BGT machine has three kinds of buttons:-
(1) The Big Red Button which you press to start a performance and which the judges press during a performance to light up their crosses
(2) The small SKILL and (3) TIME buttons which match the symbols on the Talent Cards.
To start the game the player with the most recent birthday will be the first 'performer'.
Starting a Turn:
The performer picks up the top card from the Talent Card pile. They take a few moments to choose one of the three talents from the side that was face down on the pile. They must then read out loud their chosen talent to the other players. The performer must now press the SKILL and TIME buttons on the BGT Machine that match those of their chosen talent. The BGT Machine will confirm these levels as the buttons are pressed. The three players to the performer's left will act as the three judges (any other players act as audience members venting their approval or disapproval). The middle judge will ask if the performer is ready. When the performer says, "Yes" the middle judge presses the Big Red Button to start the timer.
The performer must now do their best to act out, perform or otherwise demonstrate their 'talent'. Perhaps they should chat amicably to the judges; perhaps explain their actions as if they were a keen presenter on a kids' TV show. Simply 'doing' the talent is unlikely to be enough. A performer must entertain the judges to have a chance of lasting to their target time. As each judge runs out of patience, they press the Big Red Button to light up a cross. If all three judges have pressed the Big Red Button (lighting up all three crosses) the BGT machine will make the UHUHUH! sound to end the performance. If a performer reaches their target time without receiving three crosses, their turn is ended by the CONGRATULATORY sound.
Finishing a Turn:
The BGT Machine will announce the performer's score and that player then moves their playing piece that number of spaces around the board. If the Big Red Button is pressed again before the next performer presses the SKILL and TIME buttons the last performer's talent score will be repeated. Place the Talent Card at the bottom of the pile. The player to the performer's left takes the next turn.
Winning the Game:
The first player whose piece reaches (or passes) the winning space on the board is the winner.
Amended Rules for 2 and 3 players:
With three players, one of the two judges can press the Big Red Button twice.
With two players, the single judge can press the Big red Button three times.
Performing Your Own Talents:
Any performer can decide to perform a hidden talent of their own. They must inform the judges of this and what they are going to do. The SKILL level will always be 2 and the target TIME will be 40 seconds.
The BGT Machine scoring system:
In case you're interested... each score is calculated using; the SKILL level, the target TIME and the time taken by each judge to press the Big Red Button. A 60 second talent with a SKILL level of 3 has the potential for a top score of 9.
Pressing the wrong Button:
If the wrong SKILL or TIME button is pressed simply press the correct button that will override the error.