Google’s Toontastic 3D App Is Funtastic
Is there a school project or book report currently underway in your household? Or, maybe your product team is tasked with coming up with a clever presentation (i.e., “Please make sure this one doesn’t put everybody to sleep”). Have you tried Toontastic 3D from Google?
Announced on Google’s education blog, the Toontastic 3D app lets anyone create 3D cartoons. Select from dozens of characters, customize them, or draw your own. Then simply move them around on a screen and animate and narrate your own cartoons. Create shows, stories, reports, family photo albums, presentations—whatever. Here’s “Dark & Stormy Night” with Toontastic 3D.
There’s an idea lab to spark inspiration. There’s also a video clip where Pixar story artist Austin Madison talks about storytelling the Pixar way. “It’s almost like you’re dropped in the middle of a story jungle and you’ve got your machete and it’s like, okay the characters are out here somewhere, and we’re going to find ‘em.”
For aspiring creatives, there are three story arcs that help you map out your plot. Choose a basic three-part short story (beginning, middle, and end) or a science report format (question, hypothesis, experiment, results, and conclusion). To give your protagonist a more challenging adventure, there’s the five-stage classic story structure that’s often taught in creative writing classes and workshops.
The Classic Story:
Setup: Introduce the setting and characters
Conflict: Inciting incident or turning point, where you introduce a dilemma for your characters
Challenge: Raise the stakes and make the problem harder
Climax: Hero vs. villain, your character solves the problem
Resolution: Show the problem has been solved
Maybe you’re ready to try something besides PowerPoint. This may be a stretch, but Toontastic 3D could dramatize a case study along the same classic story structure using (1) background and overview, (2) problem, (3) challenge, (4) solution, and (5) outcome.
Your cartoons aren’t shared with Google but saved locally in-app and on-device unless you delete or export them to the photos app or library on your device. Toontastic 3D is available and free to download for phones, tablets, and select Chromebooks in both the Google Play Store and iOS App Store.
"A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away..."