Arrogance is a dangerous state of mind on the island. Many over-confident players have met their downfall thanks to their own hubris, including John Carroll from Survivor: Marquesas. He and his three Rotu tribe mates had a strong alliance by the time the two tribes merged, with the Rotu Four, as they became known, even alienating the remaining three Rotu members.
On the outskirts, the trio banded with the two new members from the other tribe and managed to vote out John who was clearly in shock that he had been outplayed.
The Best Laid Plans of Mice and Men
While on Survivor: Cook Islands, Cao Boi Bui had an ingenious idea. Knowing that one of his tribemates had a hidden immunity idol, he devised a plan to smoke it out by causing a split vote, forcing the idol into play to save someone.
According to the nail salon manager, Plan Voodoo, as he called it, came to him in a dream. Although Cao Boi was actually the one who ended up being voted out in that Tribal Council, the method he invented has been used in later seasons with success.
Using the Vote
Watching Rob Cesternino on Survivor: Amazon was a bit like observing a masterclass. The New Yorker managed to swing from alliance to alliance as easily as Tarzan launched from branch to branch. Rob’s ability to do so saw him persuade even those he had betrayed to vote out his biggest threats.
His cunning game plan took him to the final three, but, unfortunately, did not earn him the $1 million, with host Jeff Probst deeming him “the smartest player to never win”.
Players who join Survivor now have years worth of seasons to study in order to devise the best game plan to win. But when the first season of the reality show commenced, it was up to those first bunch of contestants to figure out how exactly to outwit, outplay, and outlast.
Richard Hatch had a vision of forming alliances and, as we now know, that is the way to go. It made him the worthy winner of Survivor: Borneo.
A Deal Gone Awry
Trust is a major component of playing the game, but if there’s one thing we’ve learned from watching Survivor over the years, it’s that no one can be trusted. Sandra Diaz-Twine learned that the hard way after she struck a deal with Denise Stapley on Survivor: Winners at War.
Sandra decided to offer Denise her immunity idol in exchange for two fire tokens so that she could vote out Tony Vlachos. Under the agreement, Denise would hand over the first token, and only provide the second after the idol proved to be real. Instead, she saved herself with the idol and voted out Sandra.