Posts Tagged ‘CBeebies’

  • How we created the responsive HTML5 Art Tools for the BBC


    We were very pleased to be able to create the responsive HTML5 version of the CBeebies Art Tools for the BBC. The CBeebies site had long had a Flash based art tool that allowed children to paint and draw in the browser. The BBC had also released a native app on mobile which offered a similar painting experience on mobiles.

    However with the shift of their web site to a responsive layout they required a new art tool – one that was built using HTML5 technologies, that ran across desktop and mobile browsers, and that combined the best elements from both the native app and Flash versions.

    Easy to re-skin

    One of the primary requirements of the new Art Tool was that it should be easy for their editorial teams to re-skin it. This needed to be possible without having to edit any source code or recompile. To achieve this we built a power JSON data file structure and easy way of managing assets. This allows the BBC to create a brand new re-skin of the Art Tools by simply modifying a single json file and associated graphics. Full sets of PSD templates were created to streamline this process and a comprehensive 80+ page user manual was written for internal staff.

    You can see a re-skin of the Art Tools for the show Hey Duggee. As you can see it’s visually quite different from the screen shots above, however it’s all running from the same single code base. Read More

  • Wide-eyed, quacky, flappy, pre-school adventures!


    We’re delighted to announce that our latest HTML5 game has gone live today. This time it’s a jigsaw game aimed at pre-school children and based around the wonderfully quacky world of Sarah and Duck. If you’ve small children (and access to the CBeebies channel) then we’d strongly recommend watching the show! It’s a great twist on friendship and relationships, but in a slightly surreal and very colourful world.

    We’ve also totally revamped our Games page recently. Before it was just a big long list of terribly unsorted screen shots, and if you were lucky they’d click through to an old games page. But thanks to a lovely re-design from Tom Waterhouse we now present all our games in a neat new style, and every single games page now has a wealth of information about the title including lots of screen shots and easy to find “Play” buttons at last!

    So have a browse around our new games pages. If you factor in that nearly all of our HTML5 games were released in the last 18 months you’ll see just how busy we’ve been! And it’s definitely not slowing-up for the rest of this year either. If you’re thinking of contacting us for an HTML5 game then please do so very soon, as we’re getting booked out for the rest of 2013 extremely quickly. Equally if you’re a skilled JS game developer, drop me your details asap.

  • Our Tree Fu Tom: Magic Dash HTML5 game is live


    We’re pleased to announce our latest HTML5 game has gone live on the BBC Cbeebies mobile site. Based on the extremely popular Tree Fu Tom TV show, Magic Dash see’s you running and leaping across 4 different stages, collecting magic sap and power-ups as you go. We’ve built a number of games for Cbeebies now and it was really great to  do a proper action game.


    Development at Photon Storm was lead by Jakub Joras with Tom Waterhouse handling graphics. Jakub pulled out all the stops to ensure the game ran as well as possible in mobile browsers. We were working from an existing Flash game created by Peg Digital, so the fun core game concept already existed as did a lot of the assets. But as is usual in moving from Flash to mobile we had to re-design the level layouts significantly and cut back on a few of the effects present in the desktop version. However we’re very pleased with the end result and what we managed to squeeze out of mobile browsers.

    Play Tree Fu Tom: Magic Dash in your mobile/tablet browser.

  • CBeebies First Time Online – Teaching basic mobile interactions through HTML5 games


    If you’ve got smaller children and watch CBeebies in the UK then you’ve probably seen their First Time Online campaign running. The project is aimed both at educating parents about what CBeebies has to offer online, as well as encouraging and explaining to young children how to interact with it. This week the final of the 3 mobile interactions that we built went live.

    Created for the mobile/tablet web browser they take the young players through learning about 3 common interactions: ‘Touching’ is introduced via an  Abney and Teal bubble popping game. The ‘Swiping’ mechanic is explained by hunting for the Piplings in Waybuloo and flicking the leaves away. And finally Postman Pat: Special Delivery Service introduces the concept of ‘having to wait’ for things to download – an unfortunate but unavoidable event in all online games!


    Read More

  • Old Jack’s Boat HTML5 game released for CBeebies


    We are pleased to announce that our 4th HTML5 mobile browser game for the BBC pre-school channel CBeebies is now out. Based on the brand new show Old Jack’s Boat, staring Bernard Cribbins, Helen Lederer and Freema Agyeman, it allows little adventurers to peer into the depths of the sea and uncover the colourful characters living down below.


    “Old Jack’s Boat is a brand new show on CBeebies and features Children’s TV legend Bernard Cribbins as ‘Old Jack’,  a retired fisherman who lives in a little village on the North Yorkshire Coast.  Helped along by a cast of colourful characters, ‘Old Jack’ tells tall stories from inside his old fishing boat. The series is a mix of live action and animation which allows Old Jack to wander along the seabed, visit tropical islands and fly high in the air on balloons always accompanied by his faithful dog, Salty.”


    As with all CBeebies projects we have to take a very different approach to the design and implementation due to the age ranges involved. For example buttons use iconography, not text, and the game needs to cater for ‘inaccurate’ touch events and other random elements that 3 year old’s can inflict upon your mobile device.

    Point your mobile browser at to find the fish.