If you’ve ever played Pictionary, you know how strangely cryptic, and yet amazingly effective drawings can become. As you get more familiar with the game and with each other, you reach a point where you can communicate remarkably abstract concepts with just a few lines.
Instead of drawing, you use any combination of Shape Cards to construct your clue.
Since it’s so Pictionaryish, it’s really easy to understand how to play. Until, that is, you actually try. And then it seems impossible. Until you keep trying. And, oddly enough, it is quite possible. Challenging, you bet. But surprisingly possible. As the game goes on, and people become more familiar with the shapes and what you can do with them (you can even “animate” them by sliding sections back and forth), it gets more and more intriguing. It definitely requires ingenuity, creativity and good imagination. Which makes the experience all that much more compelling.
There are three different words or phrases to try to guess on each of the 168 Squint cards (well, six if you count both sides). The role of a die determines which of the three you must use. (We decided not to use the die, and leave the choice up to the clue-giver. The challenge is deep enough at first, and, even though the three different choices are assigned different levels of difficulty – and point value – what may be difficult for one person to communicate can prove easier for the next.) The scoring is exceptionally compassionate. Both the guesser and guessee get points for a correct response.
Rounds are timed, so gameplay is fast and tense. The longer you play, the more adept you become at giving and interpreting clues. Eventually, you astonish each other with your collective brilliance.
We learned to use a ruler to indicate the bottom of the construct. We also seriously contemplated looking for a white surface upon which to arrange the cards. But, as the manufacturers so eponymously explain, squinting really helps.
Squint is a unique, brilliantly challenging guessing game that makes people feel good about their individual and collective genius. For 3-6 players, ages 12 and up.