App review by
Christopher Healy, Common Sense Media
Toontastic App Poster Image

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Create amazing multi-scene cartoons with musical scores.

Parents say

age 9+
Based on 4 reviews

Kids say

age 6+
Based on 5 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn about the art of storytelling and theater as they create their own puppet shows. Toontastic walks kids through the basics of the story arc (setup, conflict, challenge, climax, and resolution), letting them choose their scenery and characters or draw their own from scratch, then record their own dialogue and choose appropriate music. Toontastic is a wonderful creative outlet for kids to express themselves through a variety of art forms rolled into one package.

Ease of Play

The app is very well designed even for preschoolers to be able to use. The directions are explained (in spoken narration) in a clear, understandable fashion.

Violence & Scariness

Some of the characters hold swords (but whether or not they use those swords is up to the kids using the app). Characters available for purchase include monsters and ghosts (none too scary, though).

Sexy Stuff

There are plenty of characters and settings to use in the collection that comes pre-set with the app. There are also several scene packs with additional characters and settings for $.99-$1.99 each. A $9.99 in-app purchase unlocks everything.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Toontastic provides a stunningly easy way to create your own animated films. Kids choose the characters and setting for each scene, then just move the pieces around like they were playing with action figures, providing their own dialogue as the iPad records it all. They can then add a musical score with the appropriate emotional tone. The app doesn't just allow kids to make their own cartoons, it also teaches the fundamentals of storytelling. Kids can share their videos with the Toontastic community and enter them in film contests, so it's important that they do not reveal personal information in their videos.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byAcquilas GNAKALE January 13, 2022
Parent of a 4 and 6-year-old Written byTrisha H. December 29, 2016

So fun and creative

My two boys play this and giggle constantly. They love to create and they can even work on it together. I enjoy the fact that it is creative play even if it i... Continue reading
Kid, 0 years old November 11, 2020
Teen, 13 years old Written byMichael Villanueva September 20, 2016

What's it about?

In Toontastic players create original animated cartoons by choosing the characters and settings (either from templates or by drawing their own from scratch), posing and moving the characters around by dragging them around the screen, recording dialogue using the iPad's built-in microphone, and selecting an appropriate musical background. Kids can share their videos and watch other kids' creations through the Toontastic online community.


Is it any good?

TOONTASTIC is brilliant in so many ways. It's a wonderful teaching tool, in that it clearly and concisely explains the fundamentals of storytelling (character, setting, story arc, etc.). And it's remarkably easy to create your own cartoons with it. The app allows kids to "animate" their characters by simply shuffling them around with their fingertips as they naturally would when playing with, say, paper dolls. The iPad records all the movements -- and all the character voices and narration that kids provide as they play -- and plays it back to us like a real animated film. Even the way the app lets you provide a musical score is genius: Kids can choose the emotions they want to convey (by picking the appropriate facial expression icon) and hear music that fits. And the final products can look really great. An update to the original release gave kids the welcome ability to save and re-use their custom-created characters and settings in multiple scenes. The number of characters and settings keeps expanding with the addition of themed scene packs -- though such packs much be purchased individually if you haven't bought the all-access pass.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Explore other works of literature and analyze how the plot follows the basic story arc (setup through to resolution).

  • Attend a live puppet show or theater performance with your child and talk about the story arc afterward.

App details

  • Device: iPad
  • Subjects: Language & Reading: storytelling
    Arts: drawing, theater
  • Skills: Creativity: imagination, producing new content
    Communication: multiple forms of expression
  • Price: Free
  • Pricing structure: Free
  • Release date: November 2, 2011
  • Category: Education
  • Size: 176.00 MB
  • Publisher: Launchpad Toys
  • Version: 1.40
  • Minimum software requirements: iOS 4.3 or later
  • Last updated: November 11, 2020

Our editors recommend

For kids who love storytelling and creativity

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