When you are trying to make funny cartoons, explainer videos, or informative shorts to post online, 2D animation software can come in handy. With access to a 2D animation maker, you can create intricate and interesting stories that will help you connect with your audience.
Whether you are teaching a group of kids, showing employees how to do their job, introducing a new product, or trying to elicit an emotional reaction from your audience, 2D cartoon animation can be very useful.
If you are new to the world of 2D animation, you will be interested in our review of the top 8 2D animation software options that may prove useful to you.
1. Toon Boom Harmony
Whether you are trying to create an art piece, showcase a story through 2D images, or craft a unique message for your audience, Toon Boom Harmony will help you immensely. The software has bitmap and vector tools for creating art, 3D imported models for hybrid productions, and the option to create multiplane scenes with Z-depth.
- Revolutionary vector and bitmap drawing technology – Brush Engine
- Advanced color palettes and painting options
- 2D and 3D integration
- Cut-out animation tools
- Traditional paperless animation.
Price: The first 21 days of using the product are free. After the 21 days are up, you will need to pay $109 per month.
Want to create unique and complex 2D animations for your upcoming projects? CelAction2D is the type of product that is going to help you create wonderful animations. While getting a full license is a financial commitment, you are getting a product that has all the features that you could possibly need.
You can create a palette using up to 16 million colors, and you will have a very easy time getting to grips with the way the software works. It is designed for beginners and intermediate users, but still has all the advanced features that a pro would want.
- Easy and fast to use
- Features ergonomic controls
- Easily handles complex projects with thousands of layers
- Works with all modern Windows machines – 32 and 64-bit Also work with Macs through Boot Camp
- Multiplane camera features.
Price: If you go with the Studio Edition, it costs $1,300 to obtain a single license to use the product for a lifetime. Studio Edition is $1300 USD for one single license
3. Moho (Anime Studio) Pro
Anime Studio Pro is a fantastic option for anyone who is looking to get into 2D animation creation. It is affordable, and designed for Flash-style animations. While you cannot create frame-by-frame animations using this program, you will be able to create some fantastic videos nonetheless.
There is an Anime Studio Debut, which is targeted towards the beginner user. But if you want all the features of a high end 2D animation software, you will want to go with the Pro version.
- Enhanced freehand drawing tools
- Beizer handles to make it easier for you to design your videos the way that you want
- Smart warp feature helps create custom meshes to bend and twist your animations
- Realistic motion blur
- Animation for multiple layers at the same time
Price: $399.99 for the full package.
4. Stop Motion Studio
Want to create fun, 2D animated videos? Hoping to impress your bosses with a 2D animated presentation to highlight a product’s features? Using Stop Motion Studio will help you achieve all that you want in the world of 2D animation.
You can capture content with ease, whether you change up the focus, exposure or white balance. There is DSLR support, so you can use your high end camera in conjunction with this software.
And with a unique, frame-by-frame editor, you will be able to get the end result that you want for your 2D stop animation movie.
- Onionskin allows you to view previous frames through a transparent overlay, which helps you create your next frame
- Comes with Chroma key and audio recording to better narrate and add voice effects to your videos
- Easy one-click uploading to YouTube and Facebook
- DSLR camera support for creating perfect 1080p recordings
Price: $59.99 to download the software onto your PC.