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Backseat Drawing Junior (Out of the Box Games)Game NameBackseat Drawing Junior

Publisher: Out of the Box Publishing

Designer: Peggy Brown

Artists: John Kovalic, Cathleen Quinn-Kinney

Year: 2008

Players: Three to eight players

Ages: 7+

You know what I like about Out of the Box Games? The games themselves are great, but in addition to this, they always come with parts that my young daughter just loves to play with. Whether it’s pirate figures, or ninja figures, or little tiles with letters on them that you can use to spell out words, or even a couple of erasable drawing boards and markers, they give her as much fun as they give me actually playing the games.

In this case we are talking about Backseat Drawing Junior. The younger version of their popular Backseat Drawing game. The object of the game is to earn points, and points can be earned in two ways, by either successfully giving directions to a player drawing a picture, and by guessing a picture which has been drawn. The first team or player to reach five points wins the game.

The game is made up of a series of rounds. Each round of the game has a director, and an artist. The director gives drawing instructions to the artist, who uses the board and marker to draw the picture that the director is describing.

The game can be played in two ways, in the everybody-in version, which is the version recommended if you have younger players. You use one board as the score board and then select a director and an artist. Everyone else is designated a guesser. The cards are then placed into the viewing box. The nice thing about the cards is Backseat Drawing Junior Contents (Out of the Box Games)that they are double sided, the opposite “Yellow” side has slightly more challenging pictures once you work your way through the easier “Green” sides. You pull a new picture card from the back and place it so that only the director can see it.

The cards display a simple drawing with a word below them telling you what the drawing is, “Tree” for example. The director proceeds to describe to the artist how to draw the picture they are looking at on the card. As an example, you might use the following description to tell an aspiring artist what to do: “Draw a circle, put two smaller circles in the big circle, next to each other and higher than the middle. Now draw a sideways half oval between and below the two smaller circles.” The other players start guessing, and hopefully someone says “Smiley Face”. If they do, they get a point.

The director can’t use the word on the card, or words that would give it away, like “Now draw a balloon” and they cant use letters of the alphabet to spell words, like “Draw an A”.

Each round the director and artist roles rotate to other players, until somebody reaches 5 points and wins the game.

In the Team play version, the players are split into 2 teams. Each round both teams select their own directors and artists. This time both drawing boards are used, and both directors simultaneously describe the picture shown to their team’s artist. The artist and other team members guess until one team or the other guesses right, and that team gets the point. Again, the first team to reach five points wins the game.

Each game only lasts about 20 to 30 minutes. It’s perfect for the younger crowd and helps to eliminate the frustration you get from games like Pictionary, because in this game there is already a picture to go along with the word that you are trying to get the other players to say. So you don’t really have to struggle thinking up a picture to draw.

The words and pictures are simple enough for the specified age range, and you won’t see words like “Hope”, or “Democracy”, or “Iambic Pentameter”.  Instead you might have to draw “House”, or “Star”. The more difficult side of the cards has words like “Backpack” and “Shoelace”, but there is always an accompanying picture to go along with the words, so don’t sweat it.

The components are of great quality. I like the nice miniature erasers, and the card viewing box is cool. The rules are simple and easy to read. We have played multiple games and it has been a blast. I’ve never played the more grown up version, maybe once we work our way through all the cards we can move up to the next level. That will take a while, as there are 336 different words in the game.

It’s a nice simple fun quick family game. If that’s what your in the mood for, I recommend Backseat Drawing Junior.

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Summary
The components are of great quality. I like the nice miniature erasers, and the card viewing box is cool. The rules are simple and easy to read. We have played multiple games and it has been a blast. I’ve never played the more grown up version, maybe once we work our way through all the cards we can move up to the next level. That will take a while, as there are 336 different words in the game. It’s a nice, simple, and quick family game. If that’s what your in the mood for, I recommend Backseat Drawing Junior.
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Elliott Miller

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