Like Game of Thrones, the megahit that preceded it, HBO’s House of the Dragon had its full coming out party at San Diego Comic-Con over the weekend. And now let the marketing programs begin.
Fans who long to hatch and raise their own dragon (while dreaming of being a silver-haired Targaryen) can do so on HBO Max’s new augmented reality app – “House of the Dragon: DracARys.”
With the app, fans around the world will be able to hatch and raise their own virtual dragons with each dragon appearing on their phone like they are right in front of them, no matter where they are.
Each dragon will be unique to its user, and as it grows will develop its own look and temperament driven by its keeper’s interactions with it, all based on lore from the fictional world created by Game of Thrones and Fire and Blood author George R.R. Martin.
Users will also learn Valyrian words from “House of the Dragon” to command their dragon through a voice recognition system. (And those who want to learn more High Valyrian can do so through another HBO marketing partnership with Duolingo). Once the dragons reach full adulthood, they will be able to roam the app’s virtual world in such a way that other users will be able to see and interact with them.
The HBO Max digital innovation and marketing teams collaborated with global creative and production company The Mill and its team of artists, technologists, and strategists to develop “House of the Dragon: DracARys” from scratch using the Unity game engine. The app is powered by Niantic’s Lightship technology with sound design by London-based studio Factory.
“When the dragons of Westeros appear on the show it’s always a breath-taking, awe-inspiring moment,” said Kevin Young, creative director at The Mill and lead creative on “House of the Dragon: DracARys” in a statement. “With DracARys, we wanted users to experience those moments of awe and wonder in the context of their everyday lives. Our ambitions are to complement the world of Westeros and the mythology of the show in an enriching way, while pushing the boundaries of what is possible with virtual characters existing in mixed realities.”
“House of the Dragon: DracARys” was first launched exclusively on July 20 at San Diego Comic-Con to attendees of the immersive guided experience “House of the Dragon: The Dragon’s Den.”
The app is now available to download on Apple and Google Play app stores in 19 countries, including Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Hungary, Mexico, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, The Netherlands, UK and the U.S. Additional countries will be announced at a later date.
House of the Dragon debuts Sunday, August 21 on HBO Max.
[Images of “House of the Dragon: DracARys” courtesy of HBO]