aNb Media News, January 26, 2017

Warner Bros. Acquires Avalanche Software

Avalanche Software, the former Disney game development subsidiary, has re-opened after Warner Bros. acquired the studio. Under the Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment umbrella, the studio will be led by John Blackburn.

Warner Bros. has also acquired the rights to the Octane engine technology, previously developed by Avalanche Software, which it will use to develop a Cars 3 video game based on the upcoming Disney/Pixar film.

The Utah-based studio was shuttered last year following Disney’s announcement to close shop on its proprietary toys-to-life franchise Disney Infinity.

Amazon Rolls Out STEM Club

Amazon launched STEM Club, a new monthly subscription service for STEM-related toys.

Each month, families will get a different, age-appropriate science, technology, engineering, and math toy hand-picked by the retailer delivered straight to their door. Subscriptions are based on three age ranges: ages 3–4, ages 5–7, and ages 8–13.

A STEM Club toy subscription costs $19.99/month, and can be canceled at any time. It is currently only available in the U.S.

Stages Learning Materials Acquires Brain Parade

Stages Learning Materials acquired Brain Parade, creator of See.Touch.Learn., a visual instruction app for children with autism and other special needs.

Working alongside Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapists and Harvard graduate school students, Stages Learning will integrate the Brain Parade library with its Language Builder app. Additionally, the company is working on new kits and physical products.

In order to align the Language Builder app’s user experience with Brain Parade’s application, Stages Learning will revamp the interface to include two modes of operation: Easy Mode, which allows parents and teachers to turn on and use the app within seconds; and Pro Mode, which supports therapists and specialists so that settings incorporate best practices for ABA therapy.

Bay Tek Games Launches Skee-Ball Product

Less than a year after completing its acquisition of the Skee-Ball brand, Bay Tek Games has signed multiple licensing agreements to bring the brand to digital platforms and other channels.

Heading up the slate of new agreements is a partnership with Ocean Media to create a branded interactive Skee-Ball app. The new app will be available on all major interactive platforms including iOS, Android, PlayStation, Mac, Linux, and other consoles later this year.

Bay Tek has also partnered with Full Circle United for branded Skee-Ball leagues and tournaments across the country. Full Circle will manage these competitive environments under its trademark Brewskee-Ball.

Other new licensed products includes slot machines (Bally’s), state lotto tickets (Alchemy3), online social games (Zynga), and desktop games (Running Press Books).

Dimensional Branding Group (DBG) is Bay Tek’s exclusive licensing agency representing Skee-Ball.