Blocks + Pixels = Bloxels

Innovative Gameplay for Both Sides of the Brain

I couldn't be more excited for the team at Pixel Press, a St. Louis startup with which my team has been fortunate enough to work. Today they announced their newest product—Bloxels—a video game building system that delivers on the promise of merging the physical and digital worlds in a way that so many companies have so far failed to do.

This product is so different from anything else on the market that I've struggled to succinctly explain it to people. I'll let a video demo do the talking.

Bloxels Prototype Video Demo

The gameplay in this video is just a prototype to demonstrate the technology.

If Minecraft, Legos and Skylanders had a would be this.
— Mateo, a brilliant 9-year-old tester

In the Box

Basically, kids get a collection of colored blocks, a 10x10 game board and an activity book that establishes the characters and universe for a particular game. Think of the board as Nintendo and the activity book as Mario Brothers. 

How it Works

Kids build a level on the game board with colored blocks. Each color represents something different in the game world—red for lava, gold for coins, purple for enemies, etc. Once they're finished building, they take a picture of the board with the Bloxels app and it is instantly converted into a playable level. Games can be shared online and players can level-up by either beating a level created by another player or by defeating another playing with their level. I promise it's easy to understand once you see it in action.

There are two ways to play with Bloxels and Brave Squad—as a hero or as a boss.

There are two ways to play with Bloxels and Brave Squad—as a hero or as a boss.

Brave Squad

The Bloxels Mario Brothers is called Brave Squad, and it's beyond bad ass. Check out some of the concept art that Pixel Press Creative Director and co-founder, Daniel Wiseman, developed along with HLK Art Director Kelsey SnivelyHLK Art Director Michael Jolly and Copy Writer Maeve Connor developed the packaging and supporting materials. It has been inspiring to watch this crew work together, as they dream up and create new stuff every day.

New York Toy Fair

I'm heading to the New York Toy Fair this weekend with a few of the guys from Pixel Press where they'll officially introduce the game to attendees. They stopped by the office today to show off the booth display, the packaging and a special edition wood game board. Everything looks so damn sweet. Especially that wood board, which will only be available on Kickstarter.

We'll be meeting with buyers and members of the media, looking to make connections for a successful product launch in August. Just in time for the holiday season.

Bloxels has that perfect combination of creativity and technology. It’s something that people are looking for, but until now, there hasn’t been anything quite like it.
— Jessie S., Store Manager, Bright Idea Toys

Up Next for Pixel Press & HLK

We have a ton of work to do before Bloxels hits stores in August. My team at HLK is working hard on a marketing and media plan to support the growth of the company. The team at Pixel Press is fine tuning their technology and building out the Brave Squad universe. We are also working on a top secret project that may or may not involve the St. Louis Science Center. (I may or may not be extremely excited about that as well.)

There will be a lot more updates in the coming months and if you're interested in Bloxels, you should sign up to get an email when we open up pre-orders in the coming weeks.

Sharing stories like this can really help a startup like Pixel Press get their dream off the ground so thank you in advance if you do. We really appreciate the support.