Jenga is a game that has been enjoyed by millions of people around the world for over three decades. The game, which tests players’ skills and dexterity, was created in the early 1980s by a British woman named Leslie Scott. In this article, we will explore who Leslie Scott is, why she created Jenga, and how the game became an instant classic.

Who Is Leslie Scott?

Who Is Leslie Scott?

Leslie Scott is an accomplished author and games inventor born on March 16th, 1955 in East Africa. She attended Oxford University where she obtained degrees in Modern Language Studies from St Anne’s College (MA Honours French and German) in 1976. After graduating from Oxford University with distinction honors degree; she began her professional life working as a journalist before venturing into gaming.

Scott started inventing games when she was just a child growing up in Africa. Her parents were both linguists and spent much of their time playing word games with their children. It was during these times that Scott discovered her love for creating games.

After completing her education at Oxford University while still retaining her love for leisure activities like organizing social events/fun fairs/games night on campus to bring students together within college walls – it came as no surprise when years down the line, upon realization there were not so many accessible family-friendly puzzles/games options that could compete at same level as traditional board/card games played indoors or outdoors; She decided to Fuse curiosity about language And passion for playfulness into what later would become one of most successful puzzle/board luck based unplugged strategy past-time hobby’s all over planet earth today.

Why Did Leslie Create Jenga?

Why Did Leslie Create Jenga?

The original idea behind Jenga came from a childhood memory that involved playing with wooden building blocks while living in Africa surrounded by wildlife creatures suchas elephants,crocodiles,buffaloes among others.This experience sparked something inside young Leslie which stuck throughout adulthood- it got its first break on a family vacation trip to Ghana in the early 1970s following her school graduation where she rediscovered her love for games by playing Shuffle. It was common sight to spot piles of wooden building blocks or even uneven sticks cut up into interesting shapes stacked up high waiting for next player take turn and somehow it dawned on Leslie that perhaps this could be turned into something more engaging, testing building and balancing skills working as team or solo.

While studying at Oxford University, Scott continued to work on developing and improving her game design skills. Eventually, she decided to create a game inspired by the wooden blocks she played with as a child in Africa.

Scott’s vision was simple yet challenging: players would remove one block at a time from a tower made of 54 wooden pieces until the stack came tumbling down. She originally called the game “Jenga,” which is derived from the Swahili word “kujenga” meaning “to build.”

How Did Jenga Become Popular?

Initially, Leslie envisaged creating JENGA for an adult audience but it seemed like kids found it just as fun! By early/mid-1980’s over only few years after officially commercialized distribution began; adult fans had taken keen interest within USA/Europe and more parts across globe- having tournaments competing against each other while children were either playing together along family members/friends during both formal/informal settings like parties,birthday celebrations,family gatherings,Camp/national park days out amusement parks,school outings among others not forgetting classrooms independent learning interactions too hence spreading its popularity organically through word of mouth/social networks/hosting/Journalist reviews/expert columns/gaming publications/recommendations.

In 1983, Scott founded her own company called Oxford Games Ltd., which became responsible for manufacturing Jenga and other board games developed by her company. From thereon aside managing growth via traditional channels adverts via TV/Radio/Print news ads, she fueled her game’s popularity by showcasing it at prestigious global toy fairs such as those that take place in New York and London which enabled distributors/retailers from all over the globe find out more about product, its USP’s while creating buzz around the game too.

Leslie Scott also patented her invention thus became sole owner of Jenga but wasn’t afraid to team up with bigger goal-oriented companies like Spears Games (UK) and Hasbro Inc who already had established ties across retailers worldwide- this helped cement foundation for even wider distribution deals throughout numerous countries beyond borders faster than anticipated because latter offered invaluable knowledge on how to market/distribute better plus access best packaging design/printing line-ups for large-scale production aimed specifically at family audiences.


In conclusion, Jenga has become one of the most popular board games in history thanks to Leslie Scott’s vision and passion. Her creation has brought joy, laughter and entertainment into millions of homes both young and old alike. It proves that sometimes inspiration can come from simple memories; a stack of wooden blocks in Africa which would eventually be used create perfect harmony engaging strategy,hands on,dexterity skills,Luck factors represented through building intricate towers.