Backseat Drawing: Finally, a Painless Drawing Game

Backseat Drawing: Finally, a Painless Drawing Game


I know LOTS of people shy away from drawing games because often they think their drawings would be identical to that of a preschooler’s if instead of a marker they were using a bright green crayon.  I’ll admit it – I’m in that group.  I think I can hold my own pretty well but I avoid participating in any drawing contests if they include any of my designer friends.  I’m just not that great of an artist when it comes to sketching.

So then why would I give a good review (all reviews here are good reviews if you haven’t noticed) to a game with “drawing” in the title?  Because the person drawing isn’t really in control of what they’re doing so it can’t be their fault if it turns out looking like a four year old did it!

Backseat Drawing is a very simple game.  On each team there is an artist, a director and a bunch of guessers.  The director is the only one who knows what the word is and they instruct the artist what to draw.  They can only use words and phrases like circle, square, above, below, big, little, on an angle, etc.  So drawing something like a birdhouse isn’t that terrible whereas drawing a zipper can be outright hilarious since you can’t say something like “draw a pair of pants.”  All while the artist is drawing the artist and other teammates are guessing.  First team to guess correctly wins the round.

brown_peggyOne of the inventors, Peggy Brown, is one of the funniest people in the toy industry and when I asked her how she came up with the idea for Backseat Drawing this is what she said:

“Backseat Drawing was invented in an Indian restaurant in Southport, Connecticut in the late 90s. While munching on nan bread and waiting for the mulligatawny soup to arrive, my buddy Catherine Rondeau and I began doodling on the backs of the paper placemats. Instead of, as many drawing games in the past have required, drawing things and getting the other player to guess what we were drawing, we decided to make the person who was doing the drawing have to guess what she, herself was drawing. That was it! A simple twist on a classic drawing game element was enough of a novel idea to make a really new and different, not to mention ridiculously silly and fun game. Because the player who gives the directions has absolutely no control of what gets drawn, we decided to call it Backseat Drawing. The name stuck, the simple play pattern and rules stuck, and that’s how Backseat Drawing was born. I can’t remember if we ordered the tandoori chicken, but I remember that as one of the most delicious meals I ever had!”

Amazing right?! All it took was a little bit of nan and Peggy and Catherine created this simple, but really fun game.  There is also a Junior version of the game out now, but I’ll be honest and say that I haven’t played the Junior version yet.  Still, I hear it’s doing well.

Backseat Drawing Stats:
~$15 at Amazon and some local game stores
4-10 Players (the more the merrier)
~15-20 Minutes
Ages 6 and up

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