|Invasion of the Champions|
|Episodes||19 (including reunion and three specials)|
|Aired from||February 7 – May 9, 2017|
Invasion of the Champions is the 29th season of The Challenge. Filming started in October and ended in November 2016.
The Challenge: Invasion of the Champions brings together 18 Underdogs to battle across a series of contests for the chance to move out of squalor and into typical Challenge luxury, The Oasis! Just when the lucky ones get comfortable, they’ll find the game is far from over. The final crop of Underdogs will have to face down eight proven Champions for their share at the $350,000 prize. With devastating elimination rounds, truly baffling hookups and the first-ever three-day final on the way, Season 29 may just prove to be the most unpredictable and gripping yet!
The game started off with 18 Underdogs (players who have yet to win a challenge) who get dropped off a boat and onto a beach, where they were living in "The Shelter." They compete individually in challenges, followed by an elimination round.The male and female winners of the challenge would be safe from elimination, and earn their ticket to "The Oasis" — the season house. The last-place finishers of each gender automatically went straight into elimination for the first challenge.
In the second challenge, the challenge winners will choose a player of the opposite gender to go into the elimination. The remainder of the cast then voted in who goes against them for the first and second challenge. The males voted for the females, and vice versa.
In the third challenge, and the last chance to earn a ticket to the Oasis, the winners will be safe from elimination, and the two remaining players of each gender will automatically compete against each other. In the elimination, each gender will compete. The winners of the elimination round would return to the game, and earn a ticket to The Oasis. The losers of the elimination round go home. Players could not go into The Oasis until every ticket had been earned. Players who earned their ticket to the Oasis will be exempt from elimination and will not compete in challenges until the Champions enter the game.
In Episode 5, eight of the toughest champions (four male, four female) will enter the game, which will become a team competition - Underdogs vs. Champions. Each challenge will be designated as either an Underdog or a Champion elimination known as "The Fortress". The winning team will earn $10,000, $15,000, or $30,000 in their team bank account. The best performing male and female of the team designated for the challenge will then choose one player of each gender to go into the elimination. The remainder of the cast will then vote in the players who will go against the nominated players in The Fortress. The winners return to the game, and the losers are eliminated.
In the final challenge, the teams are dispersed and the money banked from the challenges are split amongst the respective team members. The remaining money in the pot is determined by final placement.
Money for finalists is split as follows:
- First Place: $100,000 each
- Second Place: $15,000 each
- Third Place: $5,000 each
- The contestant won the final challenge.
- The contestant did not win the final challenge.
- The contestant won safety from the elimination.
- The contestant won the challenge, but was subject to the elimination round.
- The contestant was exempt from participating in the elimination round.
- The contestant was not selected for the elimination round.
- The contestant won in the elimination round.
- The contestant won the elimination round by default.
- The contestant lost in the elimination round and was eliminated.
- The Underdog came in last place in the Underdog Bloodbath and was automatically eliminated from the game.
- The contestant withdrew from the elimination round.
- In Episodes 3 and 4, a contestant is exempt from both challenge participation and elimination after earning a ticket into the Oasis — the result of either winning a challenge or an elimination.
- The Underdogs participate in individual challenges from Episodes 1–4. When the Champions enter the competition in Episode 5, all contestants will be separated into two teams — Champions and Underdogs.
- The first three elimination rounds were not given a name. Beginning with the fourth challenge, the elimination round is known as "The Fortress."