A new cloud-based storyboarding application called Shottio has launched with a free tier that will enable users to collaborate on boards.

The tool is targeted at filmmakers, animators, game designers, and students, particularly those who may work remotely. Boards created in Shottio are viewable and reviewable online.

Users can drag and drop in artwork, add notes and comments, play with timing for animatics, and then export as PDF layouts or animatics (which the company has renamed “boardomatics”).

Here is a one-minute look at the Shottio interface:

When Shottio first released last month, the free tier did not include the ability to collaborate. The company said it soon realized this was a mistake.

“Shottio is all about collaboration and this feature was not yet accessible in our free tier,” said Alex Santo, CEO of Ahead.IO, which makes the app. “It didn’t make much sense! We want artists to use Shottio, to get the opportunity to test its amazing possibilities with the free tier, and then, if it’s relevant for them, to integrate it even more in their workflow with the pro tier.”

Santo, who is based in Vancouver, has previously worked at visual effects studios including SpinVFX and Image Engine, at games studio Ubisoft, and at animation and vfx firms in India.

The free version of Shottio limits users to the creation of one ‘story’ and 100 exports per month, and is designed to get users on board with the storyboarding tool. The as-yet-unreleased pro tier, at $18/month, will have unlimited stories and exports, as well as other features. Ahead.IO also has plans to provide a further Studio-focused tier.

Ian Failes

Ian Failes is a writer covering visual effects and tech for Cartoon Brew.