Pictionary, the charades-inspired game that's based on guessing what people are drawing, skyrocketed to board game fame decades ago and has been a party favorite ever since. Over the years, we've seen new approaches to drawing-based gameplay and we wondered which ones people enjoy playing the most. We turned to our very own experts–the Underdog Games Advisors group–for answers. Check out their top picks for Pictionary-like games. We're sure you'll find one to bring to your next get-together.
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Get ready to multitask with this family-friendly game! During each round, every player sketches an assigned word but also has to guess what the other players are drawing as they work on their own masterpiece. The ability to draw simple, accurate sketches leaves more time for guessing and proves to be a solid strategy. Regardless of your approach to playing, laughter will be as plentiful as the guesses! (3-6 players, ages 8+)
Telestrations combines Pictionary with the classic game of telephone. Players select a word from a card and then do their best to draw the word on their dry-erase pad. Once they've completed their masterpiece, they pass the pad to the next player, who has to silently guess what the picture is and draw their own version of it. Pads are continuously passed around the table until all players have guessed and drawn, with the final summary of work and guesses revealed at the end. It's a hilarious game of correctly or incorrectly interpreting artwork. This game also comes with its own offshoots, like the adults-only Telestrations After Dark and 12-Player Telestrations. (4-8 players, ages 12+)
From Oink Games, A Fake Artist Goes to New York sets one player as the Question Master, who assigns the other players something to draw. However, one player only receives an "x" from the Question Master, instead of the item to be drawn. This player is the Fake Artist and has to pretend they know what to draw. Players then take turns passing around a sheet of paper, each contributing one continuous stroke to the drawing. After the paper travels around the table twice, players guess the identity of the fake artist. Hope your bluffing skills translate onto paper! (5-10 players, ages 8+)
This creative game starts with a judge, known as the Customer, who picks five cards that tell the other players, known as Artists, what elements their tattoo must include. The artists have three minutes to draw their tattoos while asking the customer questions to guide them in drawing his or her ideal tattoo. The artists then reveal their creations and pitch them to the customer, hoping their tattoo is the winner. Here's a fun catch to this drawing + storytelling game–since real tattoos are permanent, there's no erasing allowed! (4-6 players, ages 12+)
The creators of Pass the Pen call it "the world's fastest drawing game," and that's because the special pen retracts within 10 seconds as you draw. Each player gets to use those 10 seconds to try drawing the word that's listed on their selected card. When the pen fully retracts after 10 seconds, the other players try to guess the image correctly. If they can't, the pen is passed to the next player, who sees if their additions to the drawing yield better guesses after another 10 seconds. Kids will especially love using the unique pen that's the centerpiece of this game. (3 or more players, ages 8+)
Here's a party game that puts a paranormal spin on the classic draw-and-guess board game. The funs begins when a player picks a card featuring a monster and has 20 seconds to memorize its features. They then must put the card down and describe their bizarre encounter with the creature while the other players attempt to draw it. Players of all ages will love embellishing their tale of a monster encounter while also trying to accurately describe what they saw on their card. (3-10 players, ages 8+)
Vision-distorting glasses put an interesting and hilarious twist on this game that's ideal for kids and fun for adults, too. Just roll the dice and move along the board to see which of the three distorting glasses you'll be wearing. The space players land on also helps determine what they'll be drawing while wearing their glasses, with teammates trying to decipher and guess what the drawing is. No doubt giggles will abound in this goofy game! (4-16 players; ages 7+)
Just as the name suggests, this game has you using your nose to draw on a clear dry-erase board so the other players can see you better as you draw. Special glasses hold the dry-erase marker in place directly over the artist's nose as they move their entire head around to sketch. Other players shout out guesses while also being highly entertained by the expressions on the artist's face. (4+ players, and ages 8+)
Looking for more game options that often lean to laughter and silliness? Check out these board games that get everyone on their feet!