Playing the Ultimate Hide and Seek

Playing the Ultimate Hide and Seek

The Ultimate Hide and Seek Game

Posted by Gav Grayston.
First Published May 2013; updated May 2023.

Here's a twist on the traditional hide and seek game: 'the ultimate hide and seek'.

Here's a twist on the traditional hide and seek game: 'the ultimate hide and seek'.

Hide and seek is one of the all-time favourite kids game.

However, here's a twist on the game and something to get the kids outside, and something different and fun to do.

Unlike the usual hide-and-seek game, this requires everyone to camouflage!

How to camouflage

Camouflage is more than just putting on some 'army clothes' though they help.

The human brain can subconsciously recognise other people, even when people are partially hidden, so there are a few things the successful hider must consider.


Firstly, the best camouflage tries to change the shape of someone so they don't look like a person.

You do this in two ways.

Using camouflage pattern clothes (also known as DPM or Dispersed Pattern Material) makes it harder for the eyes to spot a person's edges, so the brain doesn't recognise the shape of a person.

Putting camo paint on the face makes it hard to recognise the lines of the face. Make sure you put the paint on with random stripes, which works better than covering all the face.

We got some simple camo gear and camo face paint from Amazon.

After tricking the eyes, change the physical shape of a person. One of the best ways to do that is with a Ghillie suit, which turns someone into a walking bush.

Even better is to get some leaves from the plants where you are hiding and put them into the suit, and you'll look like the bush.

One of our kids wears the Ghillie suit in the photo at the top of this page. Unfortunately, this was just before there were many leaves out, but if you've not spotted her, look at the tree's base on the right.


Make sure you don't have anything that will reflect light.

This includes bare skin, which can reflect light.

Long sleeves are best; wear a hat to put your face in the shadows.


Shadows are your friend and enemy.

Use the shadows. Staying in the shadows will make you harder to spot.

Make sure you're not casting a shadow that gives your position away.


Stay still. Very still.

If you have to move, then do so with slow, steady movement, and stick to the shadows.

Jerky or fast movement is easy to spot.

Playing the Ultimate Hide and Seek

Kids Camo Face Paint and Hat

Well, once you've kitted everyone out, painted their faces, and given instructions on camouflage, you need to set some rules.

Establish an area to play the game in, avoiding any dangers.

Have a whistle. Two short blasts on the whistle mean the game is over, and everyone must come out of hiding, even if they have not been found.

You will need these rules in case the kids are too hard to find!

Then off to play.

If you have a large group, it would be easier when someone is found they join in on the hunt for others.

You could even play a stealth version of capture the flag.

Playing the Ultimate Hide and Seek Game

Here's a fun video we made.  Wait until the end to see the Ghillie suit.

YouTube Video Thumbnail