Following each challenge, a team or a cast member is voted into an elimination round to take on the least successful team from the previous mission. In elimination rounds, they must compete against one another to determine which one is eliminated from the season. Each season has its own, very distinct elimination round, distinguished from those of other seasons in title, design, and general atmosphere.
The Gauntlet was the first elimination format to be used in the series during the original season of The Gauntlet. In this location, both the Real World and Road Rules teams would vote in a player of their choosing to compete in elimination. The game for that match would be chosen by the roll of a die. There was one die with specific games for opposite-sex matchups as well as a die for same-sex matchups.
Ride 'Em Cowboy: Two competitors would hold on to a mechanical bull with just one hand; whoever falls off first loses.
Dead Man's Drop: Two competitors are suspended 10 feet into the air on a pole. They then attempt to hold on to the pole by hanging upside down with their legs.
Hangman: Similar to Dead Man's Drop; competitors are still suspended 10 feet into the air, only they hang on the pole with their hands and are positioned right side up.
Perfect Fit: Two competitors first must jump into a pool and pick up their respective puzzle pieces (which are scattered about the pool). After getting their puzzle pieces, they then must make the puzzle.
Knock Your Block Off: Two competitors joust on a beam right above a pool. Whoever gets knocked off first loses.
Pole Climb: Two competitors climb a 10-foot pole. Whoever gets to the top first pulls a lever that drops the opponent's pole into the pool.
The Gauntlet would be reused as an elimination format in the sequel season The Gauntlet 2. For this season, a male and female captain were determined at the beginning of the season for both the Rookies and Veterans teams. After each team challenge, the losing team captain was sent to the Gauntlet where they would face an opponent of the same sex voted in by their team. Gauntlets alternated between "Male Gauntlets" and "Female Gauntlets" and Gauntlet games were chosen by spinning a wheel.
Name That Coconut: Players had to find the coconut with the name of the person that is the answer to a Real World/Road Rules trivia question.
Beach Brawl: Players had to wrestle their opponent out of a ring.
Capture the Flag: Players had to climb up a 20-foot (approx. 6 meters) rope net to get a flag.
Reverse Tug-O-War: Players are tied to each other, facing away from each other. First to get their flag wins.
Sticky Situation: Players had to stick balls to a board as their opponent tries to stop you.
Knock Off: The wheel never landed on this challenge; the rules and gameplay of the challenge are unknown.
Spin Again: If a Gauntlet challenge was done 3 times, the next time there is a Gauntlet, that challenge is taken off the wheel for that instance and is replaced by Spin Again.
Captain's Choice: The captain of the team going into the Gauntlet will choose which challenge he or she will be doing.
Challenger's Choice: The person the team chose to oppose the captain in the Gauntlet will choose which challenge he or she will be doing.
NOTE: In Episodes 3 and 13, Cameran and Beth were both selected to go into the Gauntlet against Kina and Aneesa respectively, but both women withdrew and voluntarily gave the win to their opponents.
The Gauntlet III
In The Gauntlet III, the Gauntlet is once again re-used in the Rookies versus Veterans format. After each team challenge, the winning team selects a member of the losing team (depending on which gender Gauntlet day it is) to protect from the Gauntlet as well as another member to compete in the Gauntlet. The losing team then selects one of its own players to compete against the already selected player in the Gauntlet. After both players are selected, T.J. spins a wheel to determine which game will be played in the Gauntlet. This season there are some minor rules such as no player can be saved from the Gauntlet twice in a row, and no Gauntlet game can be played consecutively.
Force Field: The two competitors are joined together by a rope that goes over the top of them by a pulley system. For one player to move forward he has to drag the other backwards. Each competitor starts at their line and at the start of the Gauntlet they both race to cross their opponents line. First one to do this wins.
Ram It Home: The two competitors start with a wall at their back and a sled that hangs on an overhead track in front of them. They must then use the sled to push each other. The first player to push their opponent all the way back into their own wall wins the Gauntlet.
Ball Brawl: The two competitors have to return footballs, which are aligned in a longitudinal pattern, back the starting point. Beginning with the nearest ball, the competitors both race at the same time to get the ball, and they are allowed to tackle the person and strip the ball. The five balls are each contested separately (not continuously). The first three balls, black, are worth 1 point. The last two balls are white, and worth two points each. The first person to get four points wins.
Sliders: The two competitors each have to solve a slide puzzle at the same time. They are 16 space puzzle boards and each of them has the same design, and are given a picture of what the final design should look like. One of them is blue, the other red. Their teammates (and the opposing team) are allowed to watch and help them solve it.
Ankle Breaker: Ankle Breaker is a variation of Tug Of War with both participants tied together by one ankle. They have to pull their opponent through the sand until they reach a rope which will help them reach the finish line.
NOTE: No Exile was held in Episode 4. CJ & Sydney were selected for Exile, but did not have to compete, because the team that was chosen to face them — Katelynn & Brandon — was disqualified after Brandon consumed alcohol prior to the Exile. It had been implied, though, that Katelynn would have been physically incapable of competing after she suffered a severe knee injury during the "King Of The Wall" challenge.
NOTE: Katie and Shauvon were set to compete in the "Die Hard" Gulag in Episode 3; however, Shauvon quit the game out of respect for her teammates. Therefore, no female Gulag was held.
NOTE: Johnny, Tyler, Theresa and Tori were selected for the Gulag in Episode 8. However, instead of facing off in same-gender Gulags, each player was met with a shocking twist when CT and Tina were brought into the game. Each player was set up in same-gender battles to face CT and Tina, respectively, in the "Back Up Of Me" Gulag, in a competition for who could knock over their own barrel faster.
NOTE: The "Who Can Take It?" Jungle in Episode 4 was not played and both teams -- Cara Maria & Cooke and Jasmine & Theresa -- were saved, likely as the result of Team Sarah & Trishelle's withdrawal from the game during the previous episode.
NOTE: Trey & Zach finished the "Breaking on Through" Jungle before Leroy & Ty, but were disqualified for failing to alternate breaking through each floor. Prior to the elimination round, host T. J. Lavin stated in the rules that each partner was required to alternate breaking through floors; however, Zach broke through the first two floors. Therefore, Leroy & Ty were declared the winners by default.
NOTE: Host T. J. Lavin surprised every team that no Jungle nomination would be held following the "Dirty Laundry" challenge in Episode 3.
NOTE:Thomas & Simone were nominated for the Jungle in episode 6. However, due to a personal emergency back home, Thomas quit the game, and Simone was sent home as a result of being his partner. T. J. Lavin then explained that a Jungle would still happen if Wes & Nany drew a black skull. As the result of Wes & Nany both drawing white skulls, no Jungle was held in Episode 6.
NOTE: During the "Water Torture" Arena at the beginning of Episode 5, Eric grew frustrated and quit when he determined that his weight prevented him from competing in the Arena, despite being in the lead. As a result, Team Fresh Meat was disqualified, and Team Brooklyn was declared the winner by default.
NOTE:Johnny was selected for the elimination round in Episode 3, but did not have to compete. There were four cards in "The Draw," but only three male players were eligible for participation — CT, Jordan and Swift — none of them drew the "kill card." Therefore, by virtue of Frank's illness that resulted in his removal from the competition, no male elimination round was held.
NOTE: Jamie and Mike were selected for The Pit in Episode 9. However, instead of facing each other, each player was met with a shocking twist when CT and Zach were brought into the game. Following a coin flip by host T. J. Lavin, each player was set up to face either CT or Zach in the "Hand it Over" pit elimination, in an endurance competition.
NOTE: Theo quit the Fortress in Episode 3 after not wanting to jump off the cliff. Cory was declared winner as a result.
NOTE: Host T.J. Lavin first announced that no elimination round would be held following the "Crossover" challenge in Episode 10 and instead that each contestant was treated to a house party. However, that was a part of the Bloodbath twist and it was a underdog go-away party where the underdogs will face each other in two consecutive elimination rounds. The first one will be a 4-way challenge in which one player of each gender will be eliminated if they finish last. Hunter and Jenna were eliminated due to finishing last. The second competition will be the first three-way elimination in Challenge history with another one eliminated player.