We’ve written regularly about Disney’s Story Theater range of apps, which are like digital puppet-theatres providing scenery and characters for children to make up their own stories.
There was Sofia the First: Story Theater back in early 2013, followed by Disney Princess: Story Theater and Toy Story: Story Theater that April. Most recently, there was Frozen: Story Theater this February, starring Elsa, Anna and friends.
This week, Disney tried a new idea for the series: a standalone app for iPhone and iPad called simply Disney Story Theater, which is being flagged as an “ALL NEW” release.
The idea here, as far as I can make out, is a single app that will download the various characters and items as individual “puppet packs”, paid for using in-app purchases.
The app focuses (for now) on three Disney brands: Sheriff Callie, Frozen and Sofia the First. But you’ll need to pay for the in-app packs before your kids can start creating with them: the model is that you can pay £1.49 for a single “puppet pack” or £2.29 for both from one of the brands – e.g. the two Frozen packs. There’s also a “Value Pack” to buy all three stories’ puppet packs for £10.49 in one fell swoop.
Once you’ve got a pack or two, there’s plenty for young Disney fans to enjoy, as they choose scenery, characters and props, then add music and their own voice narration to tell whatever stories they like.
A new feature – I think – is the ability for children to create another puppet to put in their stories: themselves. It involves taking a photograph of their face, then adding it to a cartoon avatar to star in the mini-plays. It’ll cost £1.49 individually if you want to unlock all the outfits.
If your kids are big Disney fans, they’ll certainly want to play this, while its creative aspects are likely to appeal to plenty of parents. Disney Story Theater is a free download for iPhone and iPad.