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Byline: Cheryl Mullin

uDraw Game Tablet (packaged with uDraw Instant Artist) XBOX 360, PS3, Wii NEVER have I seen relief so clearly etched on someone's face than on the day I told my art teacher I would not be taking the subject at GCSE. After 12 terms of producing 'art' that would have kept Hermann Rorschach busy for years, she could barely contain her joy at my decision.

Nearly (ahem) years later, I thought I had come to terms with my artistic disability. But when I saw the new uDraw tablet boasting that it can make you an Instant Artist, I just had to give it a go.

Packaged with the uDraw tablet, Instant Artist is designed to showcase the new hardware's capabilities - while allowing you to flex your creative muscles, no matter your artistic ability.

I jumped straight into the lessons, which took me through the basics from sketching simple objects, like a tomato, to examining how light would hit that object and so on. By the time I'd finished it looked like a badly burned beach ball sporting a wilted flower. The poor deluded fool even tried to get me to draw a landscape.

For those who can draw, you can throw yourself in at the deep end, free sketching your masterpiece, which can then be printed out or uploaded for you to look back on with pride. There is a wealth of features here for children to explore and enjoy too. There's painting by numbers (something I did excel at), and even some basic animation.

The uDraw tablet itself is a lovely little piece of equipment. A neat size, it comfortably sits on your knee to sketch on. I did find the cord which attaches the pen to the tablet a little restrictive; it could have done with being a tad longer. The touchscreen was ultra-sensitive, allowing for you to draw with your fingers, focus in on pictures with pinch and zoom and create deep, bold strokes.

At pounds 79.99 it's a bit on the expensive side, but if you're looking for a different way to express your artistic side this is well worth a look.

8/10 - Quick draw ? BARGAIN BUY: pounds 42.99 at www.amazon.co.uk Pictionary: Ultimate Edition (Party 44 Studios, XBOX 360, PS3) PARTY games are big on the market at the moment - especially with Christmas around the corner.

Pictionary is the latest big name to make that leap, launched to make the most of the uDraw. At the last Mullin family gathering, I unveiled this title and it proved great fun - even with just four players.

Along with the classic version of the game, there are a couple of other modes which spin it on its head.

If you're splashing out on the uDraw tablet anyway then this is a must purchase, but it's not worth buying the new hardware solely for. 7/10 - Can you tell what it is yet? ? BARGAIN BUY: pounds 24.59 at www.zavvi.com

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PICTURE THIS: uDraw picture tablet with uDraw Instant Artist
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:Dec 9, 2011
Words:512
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