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SYFY WIRE Stranger Things 3

Netflix rolls out Stranger Things mobile game, diverse animation lineup

By Don Kaye
Stranger Things 3 Eleven glaring

Netflix is busy this week as the streaming service rolls out a new Stranger Things game and a slate of diverse, original animated shows.

First up is a new mobile game based on Stranger Things that will come to iOS and Android in 2020. According to Variety, the game allows players to explore the series' evil dimension, the Upside Down, and will be location-based. Finnish publisher NextGames is doing the heavy lifting on the tech end of the game, which Chris Lee, Netflix’s director of interactive games, described as having an "amazing '80s, retro, Saturday morning cartoon art style that we’ve absolutely fallen in love with."

The mobile game, which was unveiled at E3 Coliseum in Los Angeles today (June 12), will be different from Stranger Things 3: The Game. That one is coming to PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC, and mobile devices on July 4, 2019 -- right when the show itself returns.

The Willoughbys

Meanwhile, on the other side of the Atlantic in France, Netflix was also revealing a new lineup of animated fare at the Annecy International Animated Film Festival, billed as the largest animation event in the world.

The presentation, dubbed "Netflix Animation: A Studio Without Borders," introduced four new shows: Malenga Mulendema's Mama K's Team 4, the streamer's first animated series from Africa, is about four teenage girls who are recruited to save the world sometime in the near future, while City of Ghosts, from creator Elizabeth Ito, deals with the more supernatural aspects of Los Angeles.

Then there's Dino Girl Guako, a show aimed at tweens and teens about an ordinary girl who can transform into a fire-breathing dragon. Rounding out the pack is The Willoughbys,  a coming-of-age feature billed as Netflix's second original animated film, from Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2 co-director Kris Pearn.

Netflix Kids and Family VP Melissa Cobb, who hosted the panel, said that Netflix is looking for all styles of animation -- 2D, stop-motion, CG, and more -- and wants to recruit "great creators, who can execute their vision, but we don’t have any guidelines."

Premiere dates for all four projects have yet to be confirmed.