New app encourages problem-solving and creative thinking, featuring open-ended and neurodivergent-friendly play experience.

March 5, 2024

2 Min Read
Characters from “Thomas & Friends: Let’s Roll.”
Characters from “Thomas & Friends: Let’s Roll.”Mattel

Mattel has announced “Thomas & Friends: Let’s Roll,” a new mobile app, created in partnership with StoryToys and designed under the guidance of neurodiversity consultants. The app is slated to be released during Autism Acceptance Month in April, with pre-orders now live via Google Play and the App Store.

“Thomas & Friends: Let’s Roll” is an app for children ages 2-4, fostering problem-solving and creative thinking. Through open-ended play experiences, children can learn independence and strengthen their ability to focus as they join their favorite Thomas & Friends characters on exciting journeys across the Island of Sodor.

“StoryToys has been a wonderful partner in helping bring to life an app that keeps inclusion at the heart of play,” says Mike DeLaet, global head, digital gaming, Mattel. “This collaboration further propels the ongoing expansion of Mattel’s digital portfolio aimed at providing players of all ages with captivating experiences and firsthand play opportunities with beloved characters like Thomas the Tank Engine, Bruno the Brake Car, Kana and more.”

In celebration and support of Autism Acceptance Month, Bruno the Brake Car, Thomas & Friends’ first autistic character, will be available free from launch. Introduced in 2022, Bruno was developed in partnership between Mattel, The Autistic Self Advocacy Network and Easterseals Southern California. Once released, “Thomas & Friends: Let’s Roll” will be supported with ongoing updates, including new characters, locations and seasonal content, ensuring a consistent flow of learning opportunities for children as they progress.

“It has been a pleasure to collaborate with Mattel to create a safe and accessible environment for all children, both neurodiverse and neurotypical, to learn and play,” says Emmet O'Neill, chief executive officer, StoryToys. “We are committed to ensuring neurodiverse users can have the best possible experience in ‘Thomas & Friends: Let’s Roll.’ Each element of the app has been carefully designed to cater to the diversity of players and to help each one learn lifelong skills through play. Children can set their own pace in our app, fostering confidence and autonomy.”

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