Now that Comic-Con is over, we’re sure there is an unpleasant return to reality. The humdrum droll of real life can get you down, but it doesn’t have to. If you want to animate your life, we’ve got a few apps you might want to check out. Whether it be a quick bit of avatar fun, or taking pics and making the moment pop like the animated books you love, these three will help you through it.
Bitstrips is great because it’s both animated and fantasy. It offers up suggestions on what you might be thinking (work sucks), or things you want to be doing (throwing something at someone). You create your own avatar, and Bitstrips does (most of) the rest.
You can even use friends’ avatars, but they do need to be pals. Bitstrips is very closely tied to Facebook for your social sharing, meaning your Bitstrip friends will also need to be Facebook friends.
Unfortunately, you can’t make your own pals, so there is no way to have someone join you in your adventures if they’re not Facebook pals. Not good for those not heavily invested in Facebook, but a great way to get people involved who are.
You’ve got pics, and you want them to be in a comic book. Maybe you did something very Batman-esque, or otherwise looked like a hero. Maybe the cat is deviously spying your every move, and you want to capture it.
If that’s you, ComicBook! is worth a look. Be it a single picture or multiple ones, you can edit your own comic book pages from within the app. Just allow the app to access your pics, pic one, and away you go. You can create a series of pages to make a trip special, or just make your favorite pic iconic.
You can add chat bubbles, transitional text, and even add subtle effects (like weird hats on you and some pals) to your pics. Sharing couldn’t be easier, and if you want that old-school effect — there are plenty of pre-loaded action texts to choose from.
For those photos you don’t want touched up to look like comics, try Halftone 2. It offers up a ton of very comic book style layouts, but doesn’t bring much in the way of an animated feel. You can select the layout, action texts, speech bubbles, and even background of the pages.
Halftone 2 is also neat because it can make your pages into a video, transitioning between the panels at the speed you like. For those who have pics they just want to add some snap to, Halftone is a great app. There are also an endless array of small tweaks you can make, which make your page just how you want it.
All these apps are great, and are available on iPhone and iPad. They also serve very different purposes.
If you want to make a funny pic that puts you in weird scenarios, Bitstrips is great. It adds a bit of distance between you and the actual event, being almost purely fantasy. The Facebook tie-in is a bit frustrating, especially when you just want to make up your own panel and create some friends who may not be on Facebook.
If straight-up comic book creation from your pics is what you want, ComicBook! is your app. It adds that textural filter to your pics, making them appear like something from the Sunday comics or old comic books. We like the effect, but it can be a bit heavy-handed at times.
Halftone 2 is our favorite here. it’s got an exhaustive list of customizations and features, and doesn’t get too tricky with your pics. You can edit pics with other apps, which is a smart way for the Developers to lean on apps with better filters rather than build them into Halftone. Videos are easy to create, and the slight alterations you can make to pages and panels simply puts it ahead of the pack here.