Make the whole family jump with Toca Boo!
- Carl Frisell
Toca Boo is a spooky new app from Swedish developer Toca Boca, aimed at kids aged 3 – 6 years. Launching on Thursday 23rd October (£1.99/ €2,69), just in time for Halloween, Toca Boo captures the feeling of a giggling kid hiding behind the curtain and jumping out to scare mum or dad. As with all of Toca Boca’s digital toys, Toca Boo has an intuitive, child-friendly interface, and there are no in-app purchases or external advertising. There are no rules, with the app being inherently non-competitive and encouraging open-ended play and creativity.
The main character, Bonnie, lives in a big old house with her family. It’s an hour before bedtime and Bonnie has dressed up as a ghost, sneaking around the house trying to make her family jump – it’s your job to help her! Drag Bonnie the ghost around the house and sneak up on family members when they least expect it. Kids can hide behind furniture and in dark corners, and simply tap the character they wish to scare… the biggest reaction will come from hiding and jumping out to shout BOO! Sometimes the poor victims of the prank will be so scared they’ll run from the room, providing the perfect opportunity to chase them!
Toca Boca Play Designer, Chris Lindgren, comments: “With Toca Boo, we wanted to explore and create a rather unusual mood for a children’s app – it’s a little spooky, a little scary and has some exciting tension; it recreates the fun of traditional hide and seek, and scaring family and friends. We took inspiration from reading books like Who will Comfort Toffle to our own children, and watching how fascinated they were by the magical melancholic atmosphere in Tove Jansson’s world of the Moomins. We combined this with a lot of humour and fun to create the unique experience that is Toca Boo.”
Throughout the production and development process, Toca Boca designers were sensitive to the fact that Toca Boo has a few elements that some kids might find frightening. However, the characters and setting for Toca Boo are designed to be interesting and open for interpretation: different kids will have different ideas about what is going on – is it a haunted house or a regular home? Is the man the grandpa, the dad or a stranger? Is it a real ghost? These are all great things for parents to talk about with their kids, as sometimes little ones can be afraid of imaginary things that aren’t always obvious to grown-ups.
Children might not tell parents that they are scared, but rather ask their mum or dad to join in and play with them, which can be a great chance for kids to learn to manage their emotions, and increase their confidence in taking on new challenges: both very useful things in their everyday life.
Toca Boca digital toys are available to download from App Store, Google Play, and Amazon
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About Toca Boca
Based in Stockholm, Toca Boca is part of the Bonnier Group, a family-owned global media company that began as a book publisher in 1804, and has grown to include newspapers, magazines, television, cinemas and digital media. Toca Boca was named the most pioneering team in children’s technology at the 2013 Kids at Play Interactive Awards (KAPi) at CES (Consumer Electronics Show), and other accolades include recognition from the National Parenting Publications Awards (NAPPA) in the United States, and the Lovie Awards, the only pan-European awards that recognise and reward excellence within the internet and development community. During the 2013 holiday season, the top three best-selling children’s apps were created by Toca Boca. For more information, please visit www.tocaboca.com