Colour-In Your Heroes in Marvel: Colour Your Own

May 24, 2017

From humble comic-book beginnings through to blockbuster movies, video games, and a plethora of memorabilia, the Marvel franchise has fast become one of the biggest in the world. Marvel: Colour Your Own puts you in the shoes of the godfather of comic-books, Stan Lee, as you colour-in some of the most famous and loved superheroes of all time. The app shows, though, that colouring characters in isn’t half as fun as getting to design them yourself.

Marvel: Colour Your Own features uncoloured comic-books from some of the franchise’s biggest series’, including Guardians of the Galaxy, Deadpool, and X-Men. Choosing an individual page from one of the books, you’re provided colouring tools with which you can create your own page in the Marvel universe. Using a variety of different brushes with changeable opacity and thickness, a filling-in tool, and a plethora of different colours, you have the ability to make your heroes look however you want them to. Using the zoom feature you can colour-in with precision, which is often difficult when the blank spaces are small and hard to tap on. Once the drawing is complete and you’re happy it could slot nicely into the actual comic-book, you can save it in your own library to look at later, print it off, or share it via social media.

Gone are the days when colouring was just for kids: adult colouring books have proven to be hugely popular over the last few years. Though children will still get enjoyment out of Marvel: Colour Your Own, the app’s target audience is predominantly adults, as some of the more graphic pages show (the inclusion of Deadpool says it all). However, while physical adult colouring books have become popular presumably because they’re therapeutic, a bit of time out from a hectic life, not much is relaxing about Colour Your Own. Perhaps it’s because of the frustration when your finger keeps tapping on the wrong blank space, or the fact that you’re still staring at a screen rather than getting away from one, or even because there’s no physical sensation of colouring with an actual pencil, the effect just isn’t the same as with a real colouring book.

Gone are the days when colouring was just for kids: adult colouring books have proven to be hugely popular over the last few years.

If the assumption that the target audience are adults is wrong, and in fact children are the focus, then it isn’t a particularly bad app. It features an array of different colours to choose from and different ways of putting them onto the page. It’s also a lot of fun trying to either replicate the same colour schemes that have always been used or change them completely. Yet the problem with this would be the cost for a subscription. A good amount of pages and tools are free, and will be substantial enough if you’re a casual user of the app, however if you run out of pages to draw and things to draw them with, it’s a £40 subscription fee for the year. This seems excessive no matter what the demographic they’re aiming for is, but particularly bad-tasting if it’s targeting children.

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With something as simple as colouring, it begs the question: why not buy an actual colouring book? This is especially relevant when considering that having access to the whole app costs £40. In this day and age people can expect more: to be able to create their own scenes; re-design the characters; make their own comic book. The old adage ‘you get what you pay for’ doesn’t ring true here.

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