Kids of Kayele – Game User Testing/Piloting in the Schools

It was a rare privilege to be allowed in the high school classrooms to user-test The Kids of Kayele directly with the youth. Thanks go out to all the teachers and principals in Richmond and Coquitlam that facilitated us.

Piloting was truly a rich experience and was FULL of surprises. Natasha Sarkar from CAWST made the trip from Calgary, joined up with Glen and Stu to complete the piloting team. In the classroom, after a 30 second introduction we set students loose on the game and simply observed. It was difficult to keep quiet when someone got stuck – but as user-testing goes, its better to leave people to discover their own solutions. The technology in the schools are often less than optimal – but the teachers and students impressed us by adapting and improvising along the way.  We couldn’t have guessed that the students would pair up and share one computer when the other was not working right.

After the testing we engaged students in a dialogue about the resource and the content. They completed an online survey and with that we had plenty of rich feedback to absorb.

BC Expands Tax Credits

Announced yesterday BC Film will be extending its Film Incentive Tax Credit to all Canadian controlled corporations as opposed to just BC controlled companies.   The proposed changes will be in effect for productions starting principal photography after December 31, 2008.

Canadian corporations will soon be able to access tax credits ranging from 35% to 68.5% (with additional credits for Training) of qualified BC labour expenditures.  Currently through the Production Service Tax Credit non-BC companies can access tax credits ranging form 25% to 52% of qualified BC labour.

Good news for the BC Film and Television industry.

No More Saturday Morning Cartoons For Fox

Fox will no longer be showing Saturday morning cartoons in the New Year.  Instead they will be airing a 2-hour block of infomercials according to Variety.

In response to the early demise of the 4Kids Entertainment programming deal, Fox will launch “Weekend Marketplace” from 10 AM to noon on Saturdays starting in January 2009.

4Kids Entertainment plans to move its more popular shows from Fox to the CW.

I guess kids can now learn how to get rich through Real Estate investing or how a great knife can cut a can and a tomato.

First Post

I am pleased to launch the Animation Brewery Blog today.  The purpose is to have a regular spot to share relevant animation biz related thoughts, ideas and reference.  There are certainly some excellent animation blogs out there which we will happily be referencing here like Cartoon Brew (of course!).  I expect for the short term we will be providing a lot of good practical links and article snippets from our own research.  Eventually, I’d like to see a fair amount of opinion writing on topics that have meaning for our clients and peers, and we’ll be sharing good reference materials that we dig up for anyone creating animation artwork.

Stu Wenschlag