The making of the new augmented Gruffalo Spotter app – Great for fun with the kids

I love this idea, if you are parent like me frantically searching for outdoor activities to keep your kids entertained. You will most definitely know who the Gruffalo is – he has terrible teeth in his terrible jaws etc.

Well in the first development of its kind, Magic Light Pictures and Forestry Commission England bring its characters to life in the forest with a rather cool augmented reality app. Click here to find your nearest trail to test it out, for my Northern readers – there is a nice one in Dalby Forrest that I will be trying out soon.

The app has been made available for free from next week and has no nasty in-app purchases you need to worry about. It has been designed for use at the 26 Forestry Commission England sites where we can all join the adventure through the deep dark wood. After downloading, you follow a series of clues along an interactive forest trail – tracking down signs of your favourite characters from The Book.

Each clue will apparently lead to one of five different markers in the forest – footprint signposts, specific to each one of the characters. Look for little footprints for Mouse, a slithery trail for Snake, fox tracks for Fox, bird footprints for Owl and the unmistakable great big Gruffalo footprint.

The self-led trail is packed with fun facts about forest animals with fantastic activities along the way. Once families have spotted the characters, they can use the app to bring the 3D character animation to life and take photos alongside them.

Their photos are automatically added to the device’s gallery, from where it can be shared via social media with the hashtag #GruffaloSpotters.

I think this is a great idea, to get kids excited about getting off their PlayStation and into walks in the Forrest. I will certainly be testing it out once it gets a little warmer.

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