Sixteen or more castaways are split between two or more "Tribes", are taken to a remote isolated location and are forced to live off the land with meager supplies for roughly 39 days. Frequent physical challenges are used to pit the tribes against each other for Rewards, such as food or luxuries, or for "Immunity", forcing the other tribe to attend "Tribal Council", where they must vote off one of their players. Once about half the players are remaining, the tribes are merged into a single tribe, and competitions are on an individual basis; winning Immunity prevents that player from being voted out, while several that are voted out at this stage form the game's "Jury". Once down to two or three people, a Final Tribal Council is held where the remaining players plead their case to the jury members. The jury then votes for which player should be considered the "Sole Survivor" and win the $1 million prize. Survivor has introduced numerous modifications, or "twists", on the core rules in order to keep the players on their toes and to prevent players from relying on strategies that succeeded in prior seasons. These changes have included tribal switches, seasons starting with more than two tribes, the ability to exile a player from a tribe for a short time, Hidden Immunity Idols that players can use to save themselves at Tribal Council and a chance to return to regular gameplay after elimination through "Redemption Island".
Castaways embark on the most grueling 39 days in Survivor history and test whether brute strength, looks or smarts will be the attribute that helps capture the title of Sole Survivor. Also, one castaway deals with excruciating pain when a bug gets stuck in their ear.
One castaway goes to great heights to retrieve an idol, and on the Beauty tribe, two castaways become quick friends. Also, immunity and rewards are on the line at a taxing physical challenge.
For the first time ever, two Immunity Idols can join forces to become one super idol that can be used after the votes are read. Also, one castaway gets crafty in order to retrieve an idol and another castaway on an opposing tribe may have a bounty on their head if they can’t find an idol.
The brutal heat of Kaoh Rong takes a toll on several castaways, and one is medically evacuated from of the game.
The castaways drop their buffs and switch things up, and one castaway feels all alone in the game following the tribe switch.
A hearty food reward is up for grabs at a classic challenge. Also, the pressure is on when one castaway interrogates a fellow tribemate.
A tribe merge reshuffles the game and its alliances. Also, a brutal Individual Immunity Challenge keeps castaways on their toes.
The merge creates a power struggle between the remaining members of the Brawn and Beauty tribes. Also, rumors of an all-girl alliance cause problems for one castaway.
A separation in tribes leads to the ultimate sabotage. Also, a schoolyard pick draws a line in the sand at a tough Reward Challenge.
A surprising turn of events at Tribal Council sends shock waves through the entire tribe. Also, castaways must choose between food, love or an advantage in the game.
One castaway holds the key to Individual Immunity and guarantees themselves a shot at the final six. Also, after a shocking Tribal Council, a fractured alliance may not be able to be restored.
A combination of balance and teamwork will earn some castaways a much-needed reward. Also, one castaway is under fire after bossing others around.
One castaway struggles to overcome feeling betrayed by their strongest ally. Also, an indulging reward might wreak havoc on one castaway.
The remaining castaways fight for a game-changing reward to help determine their fate. Then, after 39 intense days of one of the toughest seasons in Survivor history, one castaway will be crowned Sole Survivor and awarded the $1 Million prize.