‘Survivor’ Host Jeff Probst Explains the Purpose of Fire Tokens and How They Work in the Game

Survivor has incorporated many twists that have either failed or are current staples in the game, and the new in-game currency, fire tokens, is the latest addition for the 40th season.

For the first time, 20 former winners will return to compete against each other for a historic $2 million in what’s already being teased as one of the best seasons ever.

Jeff Probst fire tokens
Jeff Probst | CBS

In an interview with EW, host Jeff Probst said the fire tokens could change the game as we know it because instead of hunting for idols, the players might be more focused on obtaining the currency.

It’s also unclear if the fire token twist will return for another season, although it likely depends on the reaction they receive from the viewers once it airs. What are fire tokens, and how do they work?

Jeff Probst explains the meaning behind the fire tokens in ‘Survivor: Winners at War’

In an interview with EW, Jeff Probst described Survivor as a “society that forms,” and the players in it create their own rules. “And over time, every society ends up having a currency.”

Therefore, they wanted to “add another layer to the society with a Survivor currency in the form of fire tokens.” Additionally, it creates “a true economy” in terms of supply and demand.

Jeff Probst explains how the fire tokens work in ‘Survivor: Winners at War’

The showrunner and host explained the fire tokens are equivalent to money, but offers “an opportunity for advancement” in Survivor instead of the real world.

Every player begins the game with one but must “will it or bequeath it” once they are voted to the Edge of Extinction. The competitors in the game have tokens, but the Edge offers advantages that the players can sell.

Therefore, it becomes a bartering system as the contestants on the Edge can sell those advantages at whatever price they choose to the players still in the game.

The fire tokens are of assistance to those on the Edge because it will help them buy advantages should they return to the game. Additionally, as the game progresses, the need for advantages intensifies, and the player on the Edge can charge more for them. However, there is a catch.

The players on the Edge do not know what’s happening on the island or how many fire tokens anyone has. While they can borrow or join forces with someone else to come up with the money, they only have until sundown to complete the private deal.

What else can players buy with fire tokens?

Other than bartering with contestants on the Edge, the competing players can also combine their tokens to receive food, comfort, or advantages. For example, coffee and pastries cost three tokens, two pillows and blankets for four tokens, a small bag of beans and an advantage in the challenge both costs four tokens, and a regular bag of rice and tarp are five tokens each.

Watch the two-premiere for Survivor: Winners at War on Wednesday, February 12, 2020, at 8 p.m. EST on CBS.