HBO Rolls Out ‘His Dark Materials’ AR Experience To Bring Characters to the Real World

In this year of everything going virtual and remote, it makes even more sense now that Hollywood is leaning heavily on augmented reality. In this case, it’s HBO using AR to promote its highly-acclaimed original programming.

After developing a series of AR experiences via Snapchat to promote Season 1 of His Dark Materials, HBO has tapped Yahoo to create a web-based AR campaign for the second season of the show.

The web-based AR experience is fairly straightforward. Scan the QR code below (or just click this link from your mobile browser) to access the experience, which places the virtual snow leopard Stelmaria, the daemon form of Lord Asriel Belacqua, in the parlance of the source material.

Scan this code to trigger the AR experience

After placing the big cat in your physical environment, you can take a photo of the daemon to share with others. In addition, tapping the “download” button links you to the show’s official page for HBO Max.

Images by Tommy Palladino/Next Reality

For iPhone users, the My Daemon app from HBO offers a more robust AR experience. There, you can select from various animal companions, which you can view and interact with in AR and customize based on your personality. The app follows Tamagotchi-style gameplay, in which you raise and nurture your companion through physical activity and real-world quests.

Image by HBO/YouTube

HBO has long track record of using AR to promote its content, with Watchmen, Game of Thrones, and Westworld also receiving the AR treatment.

So far, HBO has not committed to a particular platform or content partner, though the media company has leaned on Snapchat more often than not.

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Cover image by Tommy Palladino/Next Reality