Dragons are coming.
A month ahead of the premiere of “Game of Thrones” prequel series “House of the Dragon,” HBO Max has launched “House of the Dragon: DracARys” — a free, augmented-reality app for the series that lets fans hatch and raise their own virtual dragon at home.
Each dragon will be unique to its user, and as it grows it will develop its own look and temperament driven by its keeper’s interactions with it, based on the lore from George R.R. Martin’s world. Users will also learn Valyrian words from “House of the Dragon” to command their dragon through a customized voice recognition system.
The pet dragons “will grow to enormous size,” HBO Max promises, hitting developmental milestones on their way to full adulthood — at which point they will be able to roam the world for other users across the world to interact with.
“House of the Dragon: DracARys” debuted July 20 at San Diego Comic-Con for attendees of the immersive guided experience “House of the Dragon: The Dragon’s Den.” HBO also hosted a panel at Comic-Con for the series with George R.R. Martin and the cast of the show, which premieres Aug. 21. HBO released the trailer for “The House of the Dragon” last week.
The free “DracARys” app is now available to download on Apple and Google Play app stores in 19 countries: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Hungary, Mexico, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, the Netherlands, the U.K. and the U.S. Additional countries will be announced at a later date.
The HBO Max marketing team developed the “DracARys” app with Technicolor Creative Studios’ The Mill division. The game uses the Unity game engine and Niantic’s Lightship augmented-reality technology with sound design by London-based studio Factory.
“With ‘House of the Dragon: DracARys’ we have built the most personalized, responsive, virtual creature to ever live on your phone, brought to life in the latest augmented reality technology,” said Victor Pineiro, director of digital innovation for HBO Max. “We can’t wait for fans to engage with DracARys and further immerse themselves in the world of Westeros.”
“House of the Dragon” is based on Martin’s “Fire & Blood.” Set 200 years before the events of “Game of Thrones,” the series tells the story of House Targaryen. It stars Paddy Considine, Matt Smith, Olivia Cooke, Emma D’Arcy, Steve Toussaint, Eve Best, Fabien Frankel, Sonoya Mizuno and Rhys Ifans. “The House of the Dragon” is executive produced by Martin, Ryan Condal and Miguel Sapochnik.
Here’s a video clip showing a recently hatched baby dragon in “DracARys”: