For my son's birthday in May my brother bought him a uDraw tablet for the wii as it was something that we thought he would enjoy and so I decided to buy him a couple of games to go with it. One of the games I bought was Pictionary which I thought would be enjoyed by my son but also by myself and friends when they call round.
The Pictionary game comes in a standard looking wii box but on the top left there is the uDraw logo and you are also told that it requires the uDraw tablet which is sold separately so there is no danger of you getting it home and then realising you can't play it because you don't have the tablet! The game is suitable for players aged three plus apparently but I don't think this is entirely accurate-yes a three year old could go on the free draw function of the game but they wouldn't be able to read the name of the thing they were meant to be drawing for the other person in their team for starters. I think my son at age seven is around the right age for a child to attempt playing this game.
The game is loaded in the same way as any other wii game and once you click on the Pictionary logo on the main wii menu you should slot your wii remote in to the slot in the uDraw tablet. I would advise that you are best to take off the wrist strap for the best fit in the tablet but it will slide in rather awkwardly should you not want to mess around with taking the wrist strap on and off and this is what I prefer to do now. You should use the stylus on the uDraw to select the language you are playing in and then decide on how many teams will be playing and choose them a colour each from the four available. Technically speaking you do really need four players to play this game in teams and accurately but to be honest my son and I often set up a game and just take it in turns at drawing and guessing which is obviously the fun part of the game anyway so there are ways around not having four people to play at all times. You also have the option as you set up the game of playing the full game, a shorter version or the shortest version. The full game does take quite some time to work through and you would be looking at an hour at the least and so if it is my son and I playing we tend to opt for one of the other ones but if I were playing with just adults the full game would be the best option.
Once you have set up the game players from each team must take it in turns to flick the stylus across the uDraw screen to roll the die with the highest number being the team to go first. Once they have done this they will land on a square and will have to choose either an adult or a junior clue. If my son is playing we always opt for the junior one as the topics are things such as vegetables or things on holiday which a child is more likely to be able to draw as well as guess but if it is just adults playing we will opt for the more difficult adult clues which can be incredibly random and sometimes impossible to draw! You can choose to skip to another item should you wish to but we try to limit this for the fun of the game! Some squares on the game board are all play squares and so all players can try and take control of the game here by guessing what has been drawn before anyone else.
Drawing with the stylus isn't really difficult to be honest but initially we all found it a little strange and I think that we have probably all got better at using it since we first tried it in May. You simply press the stylus on the screen of the uDraw and draw whatever it is you are meant to and in turn it appears on the television screen for the people in your team to guess! The picture appears colourful and bright on the television screen and I was impressed in general with the brightness of the graphics. There are buttons which appear when you are drawing for you to change the colour, thickness of the pencil or other implement you are using as well as a standard shape drawing function, rubber and paint pot for filling in larger areas with colour so it is quite fun to see how inventive you can be with the drawing but sometimes with the paint pot it goes all wrong and colours the full screen in instead of a smaller area which can be very frustrating!
If a player guesses what you are drawing within the timer on the screen then you should press the A button on the wii remote and then confirm they got it right using the stylus. This is my main issue with this game as there seems to be a lot of faffing around when really all you want to do is draw and guess! Moving around the board seems to take forever as the "commentator" notes who is in front or how far around the board you have progressed! If this was cut out the game would be much smoother and fast to play I feel.
The main game of Pictionary is the one that we tend to go on the most because it is the easiest way to play the game especially when my son is playing too. However there is also an option called Pictionary mania on there which is something that my sister and I will play! In Pictionary mania there is no distinction between adult and junior clues and instead there are new categories which you must follow. In this section you may have to draw your clue without taking the stylus off the screen of the uDraw, or by only using straight lines, or as the page constantly rotates on the screen as you are drawing as just a few examples! This game is much more frustrating as it is so hard drawing as the screen moves and sometimes you don't even realise you have lifted the stylus off the screen when all of a sudden it stops you drawing! This is a fun game for adults though, no matter how frustrating!
As you work your way around the game boards on the screen there are various frames dotted around which feature the pictures that you have drawn in your game and we always giggle as we see these as some of them can be really funny! At the end of the game all of the pictures are flashed across the screen again and it is always a good laugh to watch all of these again!
What I do like about this game is that it is straight forward to play and despite the regular faffing with clicking to confirm if someone has got an answer right or something we have never had to look to the instruction manual to work out how to play the game which is always a bonus for me because I soon get put off if something is difficult to understand. Pictionary for the wii is just £9.77 on amazon at the moment and I would recommend it as a good family game which is interactive as well as being fun! Of course you do need the uDraw tablet as well but this isn't badly priced on amazon at the moment either at £18.99 and so I think it is a worthwhile purchase and certainly with Christmas coming up would make a good game!
Thank you for reading my review!