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By 7 September 2016 | Categories: sponsored content

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Every year Pixar creates box office hits by breathing life into the dreams they had as kids, but for those without teams of animators at our disposal, what options are available to start making their own films? As luck would have it, an ingenious new toy has recently arrived on the South African market called StikBot

Stick it good

Described by its manufacturers as a "social media sharing toy", the StikBot is a small poseable robot that can stick to almost any surface thanks to a pair of suction cups on its hands and feet. The result is that you can pose the StikBot in any number of positions and start creating your own stop-motion films, akin to Wallace and Gromit, but likely without the hassle of clay to deal with.

This is done with the help of the truly intriguing Zing Studio app that accompanies the StikBot. Available for both iOS and Android users, the app allows users to snap a series of still images with a smartphone, and edit them together to create a stop-motion film.  

Designed to capture shots at ten frames per second, the free StikBot Studios app also works with a miniature green screen that users can post multiple backdrops against. For younger kids that may not be familiar with the intricacies of the film editing required for stop-motion animation, this app is a welcome tool. 

There's an app for that

Furthermore, the StikBot Studios app also comes with pre-loaded music and sound effects, to get truly creative with your StikBot short films. If you fancy yourself on the same level as Morgan Freeman, you can also narrate your own films for a personal touch. 

Added to this, StikBot films can be shared online, which plays into the social media aspect of this innovative toy. This makes the StikBot perfect for the young teenagers, according to local distributor Prima Toys, as videos can be uploaded to YouTube to be enjoyed by a growing StikBot movie making community

With content that gets shared via YouTube virtually every day, this channel not only features videos from fellow StikBot and stop-motion animation enthusiasts, but also several original series such as What the Bot? And The StikBot Show. There are also a number of instructional videos that offer step-by-step tutorials to help you start off with StikBots, as well as how to pull off more advanced shots and stop-motion animation techniques.    

Three of a kind

StikBot can be purchased from local retailers and online stores in three different options. The first is a single StikBot for R129.99, and features one poseable figurine to add to your growing collection. Next up is the Studio Pack, offering two StikBots and a tripod to hold your smartphone in place while shooting. Retailing for a recommended R299.99, the Studio Pack is the perfect starter option. 

The final choice is named the Pro Studio Pack and adds a green screen, two blue prop boxes, along with two StikBots. At R459.99, it's the go-to option for those who want to make the most of their StikBot experience.         

While encouraging kids and young teenagers to be more creative with their toys, the StikBot could even more importantly be the first step in starting a Pixar animation studio of their own. 

Weeks ahead

The start of September has seen Prima Toys bring the Stikbot into the country, and to further ramp up excitement about this ingenious little toy, a local video challenge will be kicking off on 9 September. The Make StikBot a Star challenge will allow budding movie makers to put their skills to the test and craft their own StikBot masterpiece. There is more information to come from Prima Toys, but you shouldn’t waste any time in getting your hands on a StikBot. 

To follow all of StickBot’s adventures here in South Africa, you can check him out on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and of course YouTube. Also, don’t forget to stay in the conversation by using #StikBot_ZA on social media.

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