Ever wanted to star in your own comic strip?
MANILA, Philippines - A fun, new trend is making its rounds online.
As with other time sinks like Candy Crush and Tetris Battle, Bitstrips has boomed on popular social networking website Facebook. But what makes Bitstrips different from the countless other fun online apps already out there?
This new online trend plays on the idea of personalized comic strips, letting you create an illustrated frame featuring you and your friends.
So how do you get on the bandwagon?
STEP 1: Create your avatar.
Much like building a person in The Sims, you get to decide every detail of your online self. The app lets you choose hair color, jaw shape, and your wardrobe, among other features. The process is as easy as clicking whichever choice appeals to you the most, preferably making the avatar look like you or your pals.
There aren't many clothing choices available, though, but you won't be too bothered about that once you get to the actual comic-creating stage.
STEP 2: Make a comic. You have 3 kinds to choose from:
a. A status comic.
Various sub-tabs make it easy for users to navigate and choose their scenes. You could browse through new scenes made available on a daily basis. You could also base your comic on your mood or whatever situation you are in. If you have an announcement, well, they've got a whole tab of scenes just for that!
b. A friend comic.
If you're missing a friend – or perhaps seeing too much of one – and don't know how to tell them, why not just show them?
First thing's first: pick a friend! If the friend you want to make a comic of isn't one of the dozens upon dozens of users who are already on Bitstrips, you can design their avatar for the time being. The next step would be to pick a scene from the growing number of existing ones. Again, sub-tabs will help you navigate around categories like gestures, jokes, and situations. It all depends on what you want.
c. A greeting card.
The greeting cards category is a variation of the friend comic that focuses on specific occasions.
STEP 3: Arrange your avatars.
When you've selected a scene, you'll see that all avatars are placed in pre-determined positions. If the scene is of you and a friend on the road, both avatars will be seated in the car and facing the right way.
Nonetheless, you'll still be able to move your avatars' position from head to foot and at varying angles. Want to be the one driving the swan car? Switch the avatars. Want to have a menacing look of craziness as your avatar peeks out of the tent? Change its expression. Want to be greeting an alien instead of saying good-bye? Turn your avatar around and put its arm in a waving position.
Pro Tip: Play around with your avatar! Try clicking on all the visible limbs and body parts; they're all movable. You can even change the direction of your avatar's eyes! Make them look any which way simply by clicking and dragging.
You can customize your friend's avatar too. You can do what you have to do to make that comic as realistic as possible.You can also get as crazy with your avatar as you want. Make it float, make it laugh, make it just a hand in the frame.
You can also personalize the dialogue of the comic. Users can insert speech bubbles anywhere and type messages on them. The comic's caption can also be edited to better suit your creation.
One user has found a way to make a very uplifting Bitstrip for rainy times:
STEP 4: Share your comic.
Show the world your zany creation and wait for your friends to respond!
Making Bitstrips is deliciously simple, but the outcome can be very amusing. If you haven't ventured into the land of the "Bitstrippers" yet, you may want to reconsider.
This seems to be the next big thing — at least for the time being — and you wouldn't want your friends to be having all the fun without you, especially if they make a comic strip with you in it and you can't respond with one of your own. – Rappler.com
If you've spotted an up and coming online trend, give us a hint in the comments section!