Stikbot Studio Pro Review (Zing)

PRICE CHECK
   
EDITOR'S REVIEW
OVERALL EDITOR'S RATING:
What It Is
Stikbot Studio Pro lets you make stop-motion green screen animated movies quickly and easily. Green screen is a process by which  something is shot against a green screen (in this case your Stikbot figures) and the green background is replaced by another image. (Professionals call this chromo key, and say that the backgrond has been "keyed out." Usually, this is a fairly complicated  technical process requiring sophisticated and specialized equipment. However, Stikbot Studio Pro lets you do this easily and on the fly.

The set comes with two Stikbot figures, a green screen stage (which can be reversed to blue if what you're shooting is green) and a tripod for your smartphone. Setting up the stage is as easy as folding the cardboard and inserting it in the slots. 

The set also includes two green blocks which can be used to obscure parts of the Stikbot figures if, for example, you want it to look like they're behind something or if you want to make it look like their flying. The app will screen out the green to create the effect.

Download the latest version of the free Stikbot Studio app. You need that to work with the new green screen feature. Then, select a photo background. You can use any picture from your camera roll, or select from the library that comes with the app. Point your camera phone at the green screen stage, and you'll see the backdrop in your screen. Set up your camera phone so the green screen fills the frame, and you're ready to go. 

Make the stop-motion movie by placing your Stikbot on the frame and taking a picture. Move the Stikbot slightly and take another picture. The app shows you a ghosted image of your last shot, so you can move the figure in a way that will allow you to create as smooth movement as you want. Continue taking individual frames until you have completed your movie. You can also change the photo bacground at any time through the app. 

When you're done, you can add effects, sounds and store your movie on your camera roll or in the app. You can also upload it to many different social media platforms or share in other ways. Search on #Stikbot to see some of the crazy and amazing things other people are doing with this toy. 

Is It Fun?
Making the stop-motion movies is a lot of fun. The app makes it easy. We were particularly impressed by the seamless green screen process. How they did that is a mystery, but it works really well. 

It's also really easy to use right out of the box. You can be set up and making movies in a few minutes. It's definitely a learn-as-you go kind of play, but kids will be able to try things and discover what they can do with this, which is fun by itself.

If you're already aware of Stikbot, this is a really great addition to the line. If you're just discovering it, this is a fun way to get involved. 

Who It’s For
Stikbot Studio Pro is designed for kids ages 8 and up. It will appeal most to creative kids who want to make movies and have the patience to do it. The creative process is very rewarding, but it is time consuming. Kids who like creating, experimenting and discovering will find this an engaging toy. Plus, kids who participate in social media communities will find this an outstanding way to connect with other fans of Stikbot.
What To Be Aware Of
The Stikbots have suction cups on their hands and feet, which makes them easy to pose. However, the suction cups don't stick too well to the cardboard stage and they come up, which can mess up what you're doing a bit. 


Update July, 2016: After this review first appeared, Zing went back and redesigned the stage. It now has a varnished base that grips the suction cups really well! Nice going! Rock on #Stikbot fans!


Anything green will be "keyed out" and not show up. If you want to use green items in your shots, reverse the stage so that the blue color is showing. The app works the same way. 

AT A GLANCE:
  • Fun

  • Repeat Play

  • Assembly & Instructions

    None or Very Easy