Startup Hullabalu makes an effort to create interactive stories for kids. The concept is accompanied by tappable animations accompanied by interactive games to complement each story's progression.
According to Tech Crunch, Hullabalu, which is founded by Suzanne Xie in 2012, offers a twist in the concept of interactive books. Instead of just digital storytelling, children are enabled to advance their story's progression through interaction with the world and playing with the characters.
The startup company was able to raise US$2.5 million to develop its technology and merchandise. This includes its very own animation engine and its expansion through tangible products. The fund came from a mix of old and new financiers, which includes existing firms like Liberty City, Scout, SV Angel, Great Oaks VC, SparkLabs Global, Technicolor Ventures, Vayner RSE, Rothenberg Ventures, Quotidian Ventures, and from individuals like Joanne Wilson and NBA superstar Carmelo Anthony.
This also marks as Technicolor's first investment on a project. The firm's connection to Hollywood will be a much-wanted help for the startup as it works its way to becoming a children's entertainment brand and not just a simple iOS app.
Hullabalu was inspired by Xie's love on reading science fiction and fantasy books when she was just a child. The interactive stories cater at the younger generation, as the concept has magical characters like talking animals set for an adventure to save the world.
Thanks to an animation engine known as Pegasus, the company was able to create the digital interactive story's characters, voice, art, and animation. The animation engine was able to incorporate all the details along with regular Photoshop files and convert the materials to interactive scenes. In addition, Pegasus handles real-time character animations, scene interactions and parallax, and cross-platform functionalities on Apple's operating system.
Hullabalu's stories offer 35 minutes of average gameplay with repeated engagements for kids who comes back for more stories. Other contents are available via an in-app store for only US$3.99 per download.