If you're not familiar with the show, I think you've come to the right place. Legends of the Hidden Temple was hosted by Kirk Fogg, and was a Nickelodeon game show which mixed history and physical challenges. The show was produced from 1993 to 1995, and aired on the main Nickelodeon channel up until about 1998 before it was taken off the air. Almost immediately after being pulled from the main channel, though, it was shown at various times every day on the now-discontinued Nick GaS (Games and Sports)— however, in May 2007, it made a brief four-week reappearance on the main Nick channel, airing at 7:30 A.M. every weekday. It's no longer on TV, but you could probably find some episodes floating around on the internet if you're lucky... Anyway, for anyone confused about how the show itself went, this is the page for you!
Note: Credit goes to the webmaster of http://www.geocities.com/nicklegends/ for all these pics.
The show set looked a lot like a Central American jungle. There was a different area of the set assigned to each round of the game: a 3˝-foot-deep heated pool for the initial Moat crossing challenge, a wide set of steps used for the "Steps of Knowledge" question round, a large arena-like space used to hold equipment for the Temple Games, and in back of that, a two-floor labyrinth in the back of the stage— the eponymous Temple. At the Temple's gate was an animatronic talking stone head called Olmec (his appearance in each of the three seasons in order is shown to the right), voiced by Dee Bradley Baker.
The show produced a whopping 120 episodes over three seasons. Each show begins with six teams of a boy and a girl, in order the Red Jaguars, the Blue Barracudas, the Green Monkeys, the Orange Iguanas, the Purple Parrots and the Silver Snakes. Each episode has a sort of theme, determined by the daily legend about a specific historic/legendary/mythological(/made-up, on one occasion) figure. A certain artifact based on that figure is made up, and that artifact ended up in a room in the Temple somehow. The last team standing has to retrieve it.
The show starts with Olmec announcing the legend/artifact of the day and Kirk Fogg introducing the six teams, and then the rules for Round 1 are explained (by Kirk in Season 1, or by Olmec in later seasons). Round 1 has teams cross a 3˝-foot-deep heated pool called the "Moat" in a specific way without falling in. They'd use some kind of equipment (e.g. tightropes, a horizontal net above it, a bridge of inner tubes) to help them cross, but. Depending on the nature of the challenge, team might have to cross the Moat either one player at a time or both at the same time; in many cases, the players couldn't fall in, or they (and their partner, if both had to cross together) would have to go back and start over. The teams needed to get both players across the Moat; once that was done, the second player would have to hit the button on top of the team's gong, lighting it up and signaling that the team had completed the challenge. The first four teams to hit their gongs would advance to the second round.
The Steps of Knowledge
Like I said before, each episode has a central legend, and in Round 2, Olmec tells it. After Olmec finishes telling the legend, he tells everyone what room of the Temple the related artifact is located in. He then asks the teams a series of questions to test their knowledge of the story; each question was multiple choice, with three possible answers. If a team thinks they know the answer, they can buzz in by stomping down on the ancient marking on their step, lighting up their step as a signal (and causing Olmec to stop talking if he was still giving the question or possible answers when the team rang in). If the team answers correctly, they move down to the next level. But if they answer wrong or don't say anything in three seconds, the other teams get a second opportunity to answer. If nobody answers correctly the second time, or if nobody tries to ring in, Olmec throws the question out and asks a new one. The teams have to move down three steps to get to the bottom, and the first two teams to reach the base of the steps would advance to the next round.
The Temple Games
The Temple Games are played in Round 3 after the team players are introduced. At this point there are only two teams left, and they compete head-to-head for Pendants of Life, which are essential for the final round. There are three Temple Games, and the rules for each one are explained by Kirk in Season 1 or Olmec in Seasons 2 and 3. The Temple Games came in many shapes and sizes, but the general rule is that the games used for the episode are based, closely or loosely, around the legend itself. Temple Games usually last until one side completes the task or until 60 seconds have passed (almost all games last for a minute, but a handful are untimed). The first two Games are each worth one-half of a Pendant of Life and involve one player from each team (competitions could be boy-versus-boy, girl-versus-girl or boy-versus-girl), but the third Game is worth a full Pendant and both players from each team are involved. Whoever wins each game wins that Pendant fragment, but if a tie occurs on any Temple Game, both sides win the Pendant value. After the three games, the team with more Pendants of Life wins and will go to Olmec's Temple in the final round.
If the teams are tied after three Temple Games, a tiebreaker pedestal made of two gongs is brought out and the teams are asked to stand behind it. A tiebreaker question is read (by Kirk in Season 1 or Olmec later in the show's run), and the team that hits their gong first gets a chance to answer the question. If they answer right, they win and go directly to the Temple, but what happens if they answer wrong wasn't consistent throughout the show. In Season 1, if a team guessed wrong the other team automatically won. But in later seasons, if the team guessed wrong the other team simply got a chance to answer, forcing them to earn their way to the Temple.
The Temple Run is the last round of the show. Olmec's Temple is a huge labyrinth of twelve rooms that are all connected to each other by randomly locked or unlocked doors. The show's artifact is placed in the room that Olmec indicated during the Steps of Knowledge. Before the run, Olmec gives a rundown of the rooms of the Temple and explains how their objectives must be completed. One player from the team says that he or she will go first into the temple, and is given a full Pendant of Life. The second player gets the whatever else parts of a Pendant that was won in the Temple Games, ranging from a full Pendant to a half or nothing at all. The team has to reach the artifact by passing through each room up to its location and then picking it up, then they have to bring it out of the Temple. The doors aren't always configured in the same way for each episode, so a door that is unlocked in one episode may be locked in the next— the artifact location didn't correspond to a single possible path, either. The pattern of locked doors usually forces the team take a long way to the artifact, often by changing floors at least once or going past the artifact on the opposite floor and then curving around (on three occasions, however, a direct path to the artifact was possible).
Now, the players were awarded Pendants of Life for a reason. Hidden in the temple are three Mayan Temple Guards, each assigned to guard a randomly chosen room of the Temple (the room where the artifact was and the "pit" room never housed a guard, so there were ten possible locations.) If the frontrunner is caught by a Temple Guard after entering a room with holds one, he or she has to surrender a Pendant of Life to the Guard, who will then disappear for the rest of the Temple Run. But if that player runs into a second Temple Guard, he or she is taken out of the Temple (with that Guard disappearing for good as well), and the second partner has to start at the Temple Gate and try to get to the artifact. All the doors the frontrunner opened stay open for his or her partner, so the second player doesn't need to worry about clearing the same objectives or encountering the first two guards again.
Now, unless the team won two full Pendants of Life in the Temple Games, meeting the third Temple Guard in the Temple is fatal, and would end the run right then and there. If the team has a Pendant and a half, they can search for another half Pendant hidden in the Temple; the second runner can pick up that half to make a full Pendant, which he or she can trade to the third Temple Guard for an extra life. But if the team won only one Pendant, there are no additional Pendants hidden in the Temple, but generally more doors are opened so that the Temple Guards will be a little easier to avoid.
To complicate matters, a team only has three minutes to complete the Temple Run. If the team reaches the artifact before time runs out, all of the doors in the Temple instantly unlock, and no more Temple Guards appear. The only thing the contestant has to do then is to make a run back toward the entrance with any time left on the clock. If the player successfully makes it through the Temple Gate with the artifact before the three minutes expire, the team wins the grand prize. The endgame isn't always as difficult as it might seem, however: out of the 120 teams that made it to the Temple, 32 managed to win the grand prize.
Of course, that means 88 teams didn't bring the artifact out of the Temple in time, but no team goes home empty-handed. Players get a prize just for getting to the Temple, and a second, slightly more valuable one if they can get to the artifact in time. But if the team makes it out of the Temple with the artifact within three minutes, they win the first two prizes as well as a vacation package.