Toca Boca

Toca Ink Event, NY

21 Nov 2014 by Zemika

For the launch of Toca Ink  we decided to fly off to New York and throw a massive play date only to give the tattoos the star treatment they really deserve! It was a sunny Saturday in November and we filled the Brooklyn Night Bazaar to the top and celebrated the collaboration together with Virginia Elwood. For those of you who couldn’t be there – we filmed the whole thing and here it is!

Thanks to everyone who came – it was a real success!

Toca Boca Virginia Party NYC
Toca Boca Virginia Party NYC
Toca Boca Virginia Party NYC
Toca Boca Virginia Party NYC

Want to know more about the collaboration?
Inspired by the bold graphics of Toca Boca’s characters, Elwood created six temporary tattoos that feature characters from popular Toca Boca digital toys such as Toca Kitchen Monster and Toca House, allowing kids to imagine what it would be like to have a real tattoo by one of the world’s most skilled tattoo artists.

Just a teeny bit about Artist Play Series
Play and art are inseparably intertwined. The work of an artist who does not play is unbearably boring. With the Artist Play Series, we asked some of our favorite contemporary artists from around the world to create tools for play that encourage imagination and self – expression.

The making of Toca Nature

18 Nov 2014 by Zemika

Follow our Play Designer on a stroll behind nature. Take a walk on the wild side and head off the beaten path to find out what really inspired the making of Toca Nature.

“In Toca Nature we want to convey the wonders of nature. Big and small, there are many experiences to be had in the wild. It could be finding a stick that resembles something else, or seeing a live animal for the first time. Toca Nature does not aim to replace the experience of going into an actual forest; instead we want to amplify the mysteries and magical moments that COULD be experienced in the wild. And some that you could only wish would happen… In Toca Nature the forest is in your hands – you create it and you explore it. From big to small Toca Nature simulates a world that is alive in itself but dependent of your care.”

Mårten Brüggeman, Play Designer

Toca Nature countdown calendar: Day 5

12 Nov 2014 by Zemika

Countdown the days with us – Toca Nature is launching tomorrow! Every day we’re posting a treat for you to be all excited about and we’re thrilled you came back for day 5! Today we’re giving you the Toca Nature 3d mask.

Gather around a table or sit on the floor; you’re going to need the space! Grab a bunch of scissors, glue sticks and prepare to focus. These masks deserve some extra loving that’s for sure.

Mokkasin Toca Boca Toca nature 3d mask

To make it easy for you to get started, here’s today’s list of supplies:

1. A printer
2. Paper for the printer
3. Scissors – as many as you like
4.  Elastic band
5. Good company

Mokkasin Toca Boca Toca nature 3d mask

To make these masks may seem hard, but it’s actually super easy! Once you have all the supplies you’re ready to go. Just follow these 8 simple steps and you’ll be a pro in no time. Pinkie-promise!

1. First of all you’ll have to choose which mask you want to print. You can download them all here:
- The bear
- The Bird
- The fox
2. Now, download the file and print it out.
3. Cut along the outlines of the mask and fold the dotted lines.
4. Find which numbers go together and match them up.

Mokkasin Toca Boca Toca nature 3d mask

5. Grab your glue and stick the matching numbers together. Can you see the mask come together now?
6. Did you get a pair of scissors? Great! You’re going to need them now. Go ahead and cut along the dotted lines inside of the eyes or you won’t see a thing when you wear it.
7. Finnish off with measuring the elastic band around the back of your head and staple or tape it on the sides of the mask.
8. Time to admire your very first Toca Nature animal mask! Isn’t it beautiful? We’re sure you want to show it off in this very moment! Why not show us? Use #tocanature and share away!

Mokkasin Toca Boca Toca nature 3d mask

A special thanks goes out to Mokkasin who took all those beautiful photos. Head over to her blog if you want to see more!

Toca Nature Countdown calendar – Day 4

11 Nov 2014 by Zemika

Countdown the days with us – Toca Nature is launching in 2 days! Every day we’re posting a treat for you to be all excited about and we’re thrilled you came back for day 4!

Today we’re giving you the Toca Nature face masks! Choose a mask, print it out and become an animal. It’s super easy and great fiddly fun! However, you’ll need a few things to get going…

Toca Nature flat mask print out

1. You’ll need a printer. And paper for the printer. Just regular paper will work, or if you want a longer lasting mask get a thicker paper. Just make sure you don’t buy too thick as it might not work in your printer.
2. Pick which animal you’d like to be. There are three different ones to choose between:
- The fox
- The bird
- The hare
3. Grab all colored pens you can find – crayons, pens, paint, water color… you name it! Go crazy in your color cupboard – the more the merrier!
4. Paint and draw the mask as you like. Make it sparkle!
5. Find a pair of scissors and cut along the outlines. Attach a string on the side of the mask before putting it on.
6. Take a look in the mirror. You’ve transformed into a real animal!

Toca Nature flat mask print out

We’d love to see your masks, share them with #tocanature on Instagram and Twitter!

Missed any of the earlier posts? No worries, you can find them below!
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3

Toca Nature countdown calendar – Day 3

10 Nov 2014 by Zemika

Countdown the days with us – Toca Nature is launching in 3 days! Every day we’re posting a treat for you to be all excited about and we’re thrilled you popped back for day 3!

Today we’re giving you color fill-in printables of the animals in Toca Nature. It’s super easy to get going!

Toca Boca Toca Nature coloring sheet

You’ll need a few things before you start:
1. Pens or crayons in your favorite colors
2. Printer
3. Paper
4. … and the files!

Now you’re good to go. Grab your crayons and start coloring – there are 5 adorable animals to choose from!

Download the hare
Print the fox
Get the deer
Color a bird
Paint the bear

Toca Nature Toca Boca color sheet

Missed the earlier posts in our countdown calendar? No worries, you can find them right here!
Day 2
Day 1

Toca Nature countdown calendar – Day 2

9 Nov 2014 by Zemika

Toca Boca Toca Nature t-shirt print

We’re so happy to see you’re back for day 2!

Today we’re advancing with the Toca Nature t-shirt print! First of all, you’ll need a few things to get going:

1. Iron-on transfer paper
2. An iron
3. A pair of scissors
4. A white t-shirt or a sweater you want to pimp
5. A printer

Now, let’s get printing!

You can find the t-shirt print file right here. Simply download it, print it out on the transfer paper and cut off the white area around the print – we only want the bear on the tee and not the white area around it. Now, go get your iron but make sure to double check the instructions on the transfer paper for ironing before getting started. We don’t want to make a mess of things – all papers are slightly different. Place the cut out print bear-side down, we already mirrored it for you, and follow the iron instructions. When the paper is cool, peel it off. Now it’s done! Wow, you really are a pro! You can now make tee’s for the whole family!

Toca Boca Toca Nature t-shirt Print

Don’t leave us hanging – we’d love to see your tee’s! Share with #tocanature on Twitter or Instagram, or why not send us an email? We love emails too!
Get the print here.

Missed day 1? No worries, get the surprise right here!

Toca Nature countdown calendar – Day 1

8 Nov 2014 by Zemika

Countdown the days with us until we launch Toca Nature! Every day we’ll post a treat for you to be all excited about.

Today’s printable is the Toca Nature collect sheets. Download them right here, print them out and start collecting! Can you find the things listed? Bring it with you on your way to school or simply take a tour around the house. As you can see, we went crazy in the candy bag.. And we did find both mushrooms and fish! Surprisingly yum!

Collect Sheet 1
Collect Sheet 2

Toca Nature Collect Sheet 1
Toca Nature Collect Sheet 2
Share your findings with #tocanature on Instagram!

It’s Toca Nature!

7 Nov 2014 by Zemika

We’re so proud to announce the launch of Toca Nature! Discover birds, pick mushrooms and feed bears. Grow forests, dig out lakes and raise mountains! In our new app Toca Nature we’re bringing magic to your fingertips. Watch the trailer and get mesmerized!

As we count down the days to the launch we’ll post a treat for you here on the blog to get all excited about! Check back everyday to find a new exciting surprise. First out is the Toca Nature trailer! Enjoy!

We’re announcing Artist Play Series and Toca Ink

4 Nov 2014 by Zemika

Here’s the secret we’ve been working on for quite some time now. A new project that invites international artists to celebrate the synergies of play and art by creating tools for play. The result of the collaborations are a series of physical toys that encourage imagination and self-expression. First out is NY-based tattoo artist Virginia Elwood, creating an exclusive collection of temporary tattoos based on characters from our apps. We proudly present to you: Artist Play Series and first out is Toca Ink!

toca-ink_blog_911

So what’s the story?
Toca Ink was created in collaboration with Virginia Elwood, a renowned Brooklyn-based tattoo artist. Inspired by the bold graphics of Toca Boca’s characters, Elwood created six temporary tattoos that feature characters from apps such as Toca Kitchen Monster and Toca House, allowing kids to imagine what it would be like to have a real tattoo by one of the world’s most skilled tattoo artists!

As a tattoo artist for over 10 years now, I regularly see how tattoos spark kids’ curiosity. Kids always want to touch a tattoo, ask questions about them and even have one drawn on them. Creating the Artist Play Series temporary tattoos was a fun way of making Toca Boca tangible for kids in the real world. I spent a lot of time playing the apps to understand the character’s personalities to transfer them to a temporary tattoo design.

What’s the Toca Boca vision then?
Jens Peter de Pedro, Play Designer here at Toca Boca, is one of the people that worked closely with Virginia during the project.

At Toca Boca, we are always exploring new ways of delivering fun play experiences that celebrate creativity and spark the imagination, even beyond the digital screen. With play and art so inseparably intertwined, we are excited to launch the Artist Play Series, which gives Toca Boca a unique opportunity to work with artists in their own fields to create kids’ tools for play.

Toca Boca Virginia Elwood tattoos

About Artist Play Series
Play and art are inseparably intertwined. The work of an artist who does not play is unbearably boring. With the Artist Play Series, we asked some of our favorite contemporary artists from around the world to create tools for play that encourage imagination and self – expression. Toca INK is the result of the first collaboration we did with the tattoo artist Virginia Elwood. Totally Toca Boca style.

Now when you’ve read all this, are you feeling inspired to get inked? We for sure are. The tattoos will be available in our webshop from today! Don’t forget to keep an eye out for more products from the Artist Play Series. Yes, it’s a promise – there’s more to come!

Why scaring is good to explore

3 Nov 2014 by Zemika

If you’ve tried our newest app, Toca Boo, you may have noticed that it is a bit more dark and mystical than our previous apps. Any child (or grown-up!) playing with this digital toy is in charge of spooking — which is timely at Halloween, but also a general topic that’s good to think about for kids ages 3 to 6.

Some parents have asked us for advice on how they can guide their kids when playing with Toca Boo. Play designer Chris Lindgren offers some more insights:

Why did we chose to do an app that is a bit scary? What was the inspiration?
In this project I wanted to explore a rather unusual mood in apps for children: spooky, a little scary, and full of tension — the mood that makes hide-and-scare games so exciting. I found inspiration in reading “Who Will Comfort Toffle?” with my own daughter and watching her become fascinated by the magical, melancholic atmosphere in Tove Jansson’s world of the Moomins. We mixed that inspiration with a lot of crazy humor to create the unique experience of Toca Boo.

Toca Boca Toca Boo

Photos by Liz Stanley for Say Yes.com. Assisted by Sarah Iveson.

Are spooky themes and melancholy OK for kids as young as 3?
In this age kids start to be able to symbolize the act of being scared and being excited, and often translate this into play such as hide and seek. Kids have a need to express both fear and melancholy; the important thing to know is that the child is in control and explores a role through play.

At the very start of the app you can see that the ghost really is a little girl who puts a sheet over her head. And talking about the people in the house as family members who love to play hide and seek might help ease some of the tension.

Toca Boo Toca Boca

What can parents do to make kids feel comfortable with the spooky theme?
Most kids we met during the production think the scaring and reactions are hilarious. At the same time, there’s a tension and darkness in the app that might challenge some. Preschool kids are sometimes afraid of imaginary things that aren’t always obvious to us grown-ups. Your child might not tell you if he or she is scared, but instead ask you to join in and play. With your help this can be a chance for your child to learn to manage emotions and become confident when taking on new challenges — useful things in everyday life.

To learn more about the idea behind Toca Boo, watch our Play Designers Chris and Willow discuss the process.

Throw a Toca Boo party with our ghost printables!

24 Oct 2014 by Rebecca Crusoe

There’s nothing like an exciting and a little scary ghost party, be it at Halloween or some other spooky time of year. And half of the fun is preparing and decorating with the right party props, right? That’s why we’ve created a printable ghost party kit free for you to download right here! Our party was styled by the lovely crafts genius Kreativa Karin. Make sure you check out her Instagram feed for more party tricks.

Toca Boo party kit printables

Ghost themed printables from Toca Boca.

Every party starts with an invite that sets the right expectation. The star of our ghost party is Bonnie, the ghost from Toca Boo. Wearing both the ghost costume and not, she’ll explain in a playful way how a ghost party is all about dressing up and having fun.

Ghost party invites

Ghost party invites.

The perfect party prop has got to be the party hat! Have your guests put it on when they arrive to get that party started.

Toca Boo party hat

Toca Boo printables: party hat.

No party without party goodies right? In your own ghost party you can treat guests to spooky candy bags filled with sweets, boxes of yummy popcorn, and – just like in Toca Boo – bubbly soda that might make them burp :)

Popcorn boxes and bottle stickers

Popcorn boxes and bottle stickers for a ghost party.

Candy bag toppers

Spooky candy bag toppers.

We like our cupcakes sweet, delicious and never-ending, so we created cupcake toppers to help us find them among all the other goodies. The characters are our friends from Toca Boo – Bonnie, of course, but also her little brother and their cuddly toys and pets.

Cupcake toppers for ghost party.

Cupcake toppers.

Who’s the best companion to a cheeky little ghost? Well that’s gotta be a spider! Every spooky party needs a couple of itsy bitsy ones. Place cut out spiders at the bottom of the glass – and send a chilly surprise to your thirsty party guests.

Scary spiders for a ghost party

Scary spiders for a ghost party.

Download and print your own ghost party kit right here:

Ghost party invite
Toca Boo Party hat
Burp soda bottle label
Candy bag topper with ghost
Cupcake toppers with Toca Boo characters
Polka dot popcorn box
Scary spiders in different sizes
Wall banner with ghosts
Yellow and white checkered placemat

Bonnie Says Boo!

15 Oct 2014 by Zemika

Today is the premiere of the shortest horror movie ever made for kids. Toca Boca proudly presents ”Bonnie Says Boo!”
Be excited.
Be very excited!

We definitely have some spooky things up our sleeves – Toca Boo is coming soon!

We’re removing our first app – and here is why!

9 Oct 2014 by Emil Ovemar

Toca-Helicopter-RIP-twitter

Since we launched Helicopter Taxi — our very first app — we have produced over 20 high quality digital toys that have been downloaded more than 70 million times. Our overall experience from creating digital toys for kids tells us that the time has come to let Helicopter Taxi fly on to new adventures.

Why? It has been downloaded more than 250,000 times since 2011 and it is still a popular toy — but it does not meet the high standards for quality and user experience that we’ve developed since we began. During the past four years we have learned and evolved within play and now have a better understanding of what a digital toy from Toca Boca should be like.

At Toca Boca, we are devoted to changing the role of play on digital platforms. We do that by creating digital toys that answer to a large range of criteria, some of which include:

Open Ended. We don’t steer the direction of play or the experience a child has when playing one of our apps.
Intuitive to Use. Kids should be able to understand and enjoy our apps without guidance from a grown-up.
Accessible to a Global Audience. With downloads in more than 160 countries, we want our digital toys to be as international as possible, without spoken or written language in the actual toy.

We want to ensure that kids and parents who choose to play with one of our products know they’re getting what they’ve paid for. So when we realized Helicopter Taxi lacks too many of the above quality measures, we decided to cancel it altogether.

As we let our beloved helicopter fly into the sunset I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the team who created the first ever Toca Boca app: Jens Peter de Pedro, Emil Berner and Andrey Zhukov. Their work laid the ground for what Toca Boca is today.

And to all our Helicopter Taxi fans, thank you for supporting us since the beginning. If you already have the app it will not disappear — you can continue to enjoy it as long as you don’t change devices.

We will remove Helicopter Taxi from the App Store on October 13.

Emil Ovemar
Co-founder and executive producer at Toca Boca

 

Come play with us in Brooklyn, NY

6 Oct 2014 by Zemika

Toca Boca Plays in Brooklyn

Happy National Play-Doh Day!

17 Sep 2014 by Megan

One of the best parts about working at Toca Boca is that play is fully embraced.  So when I asked if anyone wanted to play with Play-Doh on National Play-Doh day I wasn’t left sitting in a room by myself. In fact, I had seven other friends who wanted to join in the fun. We have various degrees of artistic ability but we’re all pros at using our imagination. Take a look!

Just getting started. The creativity is oozing out of our fingers.

all_play_doh

Some flashy new jewels!

Ring_play_doh

Taco Tuesday!

taco_play_doh

Roses are always a nice treat!

flower_play_doh

Just play, okay!

play_play_doh

Awe, these little guys are so cute!

faces_play_doh

It’s the Golden Gate bridge. We sure do heart SF!

SF_play_doh