Pictionary Air Review (Mattel)

Pictionary Air
PRICE CHECK
   
EDITOR'S REVIEW
OVERALL EDITOR'S RATING:
What It Is

Pictionary Air is a whole new way to play the classic drawing and guessing game. The object of the game is still the same - to get your teammates to guess what you're drawing. But how you draw is a little different. The pen you use is a special light pen that draws in the air. And the drawing surface is a mobile device that shows what the pen is doing through the free Pictionary Air app.

You play the game in rounds, and the first team to start will select a Picturist, or someone who will sketch first. The Picturist draws a clue card and, while standing in front of the mobile device, uses the special pen to draw the five clues, one at a time, in the air while his teammates guess. (The clues don't have to be drawn in exact order, so do ones that you think are easiest first.) The Picturist can't see what his drawing actually looks like, but his teammates can because they'll be pointing the in-app camera at the Picturist to see him appear on-screen alongside his sketch. Because of this, the Picturist might get confused and want to restart his sketch. In that case, he just says, "Clear!" and the device holder clears the screen. 

If the team guesses correctly, the teammate holding the device scores it on the app. Each correct guess is worth one point. When time is up or all five clues have been guessed, it's the next team's turn to sketch and guess. After the final round of play, the team with the most points wins.

If you want to play the game in a bigger way, you can cast the gameplay onto your TV using a streaming device that is compatible with your mobile device. (See What to Be Aware of below.)

The app also includes options for adjusting the number of rounds and the timer if you want to make the game easier or more challenging depending on the age of the players. You can also record and share drawing performances using the app to relive some of the funniest moments from your game night. And there's also a Selfie Mode that allows you to draw without time limits or rounds.

Is It Fun?

This plays like the classic version - draw and guess - but it brings the paper and pen game into the digital age. You don't have to be a fantastic artist because, hey, you can't even see what you're drawing! And that means that the level of silliness definitely goes up. While some players will like that, others might find it to be too much of a challenge, especially if younger players are playing. 

Another thing to note is that it's totally fine to play this on a tablet, as we did in the video review, however, casting the screen to a TV definitely offers a richer game experience. Apple users without an Apple TV or HDMI cable will not be able to screencast. There are more options for Android users. (See What to Be Aware of below.)

Who It’s For

Pictionary Air is for two teams of players ages 8 and up. For fans of the original Pictionary who are looking for a more challenging and exciting way to play, then this might be it. 

What To Be Aware Of

The game includes the Pictionary Air pen, 112 double-sided clue cards, a card box, and one AA battery for the pen.

The game is compatible with iOS devices running 11.0 and Android devices running 6.0.

If you want to cast the screen to your TV, you'll need to have Apple TV for iOS devices; Roku, Chromecast, or a Smart TV for Android; or an HDMI cable to directly connect your mobile device to your TV.

Make sure you're playing the game indoors in a room that is not overly bright. Also, green and red clothing or green and red backgrounds can also negatively affect the gameplay.

AT A GLANCE:
  • Fun

  • Repeat Play

  • Assembly & Instructions

    Easy


    1 AA battery required