Telestrations* is a party game described as a drawing version of the childhood game Telephones (or in the UK Chinese Whispers). You start by drawing a word and passing it round the group to see if the last person can work out what the original word was — which from my experience is not often.
We have a similar game called Scrawl which our children have been desperate to play, however as its rated 17+ it is not suitable for them. We played Telestrations earlier in the year when we visited some friends and the children loved it so when Asmodee offered us a copy to review they were very keen for us get our own copy
- Game typeReal time drawing party game meaning everyone draws at the same time.
- AimThe aim is to have fun, although if you’re feeling competitive you can aim to be the person with the most points at the end.
- Number of players4-8 players – it is better with more players
- AgeThe age on the box says 12+ but we’ve successfully played it with our 8 year old. The ability to play with younger children is likely to depend on whether they can read the word cards and write their guesses.
- Time to playThe suggested time is 30 minutes, this will depend on how many rounds you play and whether you stick to the 60 second maximum limit to draw your picture.
The box comes with a plastic insert to hold all the components and it does a good job of holding them in place even if you store the box on its side. Inside the box you get:
- Box of double sided word cards
- 8 erasable sketch books with different colour binding coils
- 8 dry erase markers
- clean up cloths (these are stored under the sketch books so you may not find them if you’re not playing the full 8 players)
- 60 second timer
- 1 die.
How to play
The main objective is to have fun. However, if you’re playing with a competitive group you can score the best pictures and correct guesses, and in that case the person with the most points wins
Setting up Telestrations
Each person gets a sketch book and marker and write their name in the front of the book. Decide if you’re playing the yellow or blue side of the cards (this side or that side) and take a card.
Roll the die and match the number to a word on your card, this is your secret word. Write it on the first page. Everybody does this at the same time.
If you’re playing with an even number of players turn to page 1 and draw your word. If you’re playing with odd numbers turn to page 1 and pass to the next player, so they can draw it (they’ll need to look at your secret word). This ensures the last turn is a written guess.
You have 60 seconds to draw the picture. When the timer has finished turn the page and pass the book to the person to your left. They look at the previous page and guess the secret word. After writing their answer they turn the page and pass the book to the left. This continues until you get the sketchpad with the same colour coil back.
Ending the game and winning
When you get the notebook with the same colour coil back you reveal the pictures and guesses. We like to do this in reverse, starting with the last guess and working back to the secret word.
We’ve never scored it. But if you want to score, there are two options included in the instructions, based on accuracy of guesses and favourite guesses or drawings.
Can you guess the two secret words below?
Do I recommend it?
Yes. Telestrations is a great, fun, simple party game playing up to 8 people. You can use it as an ice breaker if people don’t know each other very well or as light relief between other games.
- Simple to learn
- Involves drawing
- Quick moving as everyone is doing the same action at the same time
- Need 4 or more people
- Younger children made smudge the pages and get pen on their fingers etc
- If younger players are not great at spelling or writing it will make it hard to work out their guesses
Other games with same mechanism
Other Party Games*
Other real time games*
? Disclaimer – I received this game through the Asmodee Blogger Board Game Club. This was a free game in exchange for an honest review. All comments are my own. This post contains affiliate links which means if you buy something I may earn a percentage of the value. However it does not cost you any more.