Sentences to Drawings

Saturday night I attended my friend Jen‘s birthday party and while there we played a game of Sentences to Drawings or The Sentence Game. It’s a blend of Pictonary and Telephone that ended up being a tremendous amount of fun.

There are some minor variations that can be found in each version of the rules, but Sentence Game Rules FAQ has the closest set of rules to what we used when we played. Boiled down, each player writes a sentence at the top of a piece of paper and passes it to the left. When a sentence is received, the player draws a picture based on it, folds the paper so the picture alone is visible and passes the paper to the left. When a picture is received, the player writes a sentence interpreting the picture, folds the paper so that only the sentence is visible and passes it to the left. This continues until players receive their original pieces of paper and best results happen with an even number of players. The results are then shared with everyone.

Each game begins with a sentence – often a deeply disturbing or completely abstract sentence – written on the top of a piece of paper. The sentence is passed to the next player, who draws a picture in a futile attempt to depict the sentence. They then fold the paper so that the sentence is no longer visible, and pass the paper to yet another player, who must write a new sentence based on what he or she thinks the picture is showing. Then this third player folds the picture out of view and passes the sentence on to another player, so repeating the process. Please read the terms of playing for the legal stuff.

My drawing skills are very limited, but the game still worked well with the few less talented of us a in the group. Things usually moved quickly away from the original idea with bizarre or hilarious results.

The Sentence Game Online! hosts a version of the game that can be played online and fairly faithfully recreates the game. It doesn’t have the same level of humour and strangeness that are present when playing with a bunch of people in the same room, but it’s still fun.

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