Time Waster of the Moment: iSketch

6:08 pm PHT

Nope, iSketch is not some Apple software or electronic device, but rather an addictive web-based multi-player Pictionary type of game (or Win, Lose or Draw, if you’re more familiar with that game show) that I’ve wasted several hours on last weekend.

You can think of iSketch as a set of chatrooms where members of each room engage in a drawing-guessing game. There are typically ten rounds and players take turn drawing for each round. Points are awarded to participants that successfully guess the hidden word or phrase while the artist also gets points for correct guesses, providing an incentive to draw skillfully. At the end of the ten rounds, the player with the most number of points wins the game.

Unlike the regular Pictionary game, the drawing interface is quite extensive (think MS Paint). You can use airbrushes, paintbrushes, or pencils, you can select the color, you can use the eraser or clean the whole canvass with a click, and you can draw ovals and rectangles. Using the color option is quite effective since it’d be clear that the yellow blob you’re drawing is the sun and not a creepy crawly.  :)

Some chatrooms feature variations of the basic game. In the Blitz! rooms, the round ends as soon as one player guesses the puzzle. In the Tandem rooms, two players collaborate in drawing a two-word phrase. There are also rooms with specific categories (like geography or animals) or languages (like Dutch and Spanish). In addition, users can create their own rooms and determine their own rules.

Want to know more? Read the corresponding Wikipedia article for an extensive overview. Or, like me, just plunge right in and draw like crazy! And if you’re already a fan of iSketch, you should find this sub-titled parody of the Adolf Hitler movie Downfall hilarious.  :D

P.S. The site requires Adobe Shockwave. Firefox lets you install the necessary plug-in directly.

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