Greetings, Earplay and World of Darkness fans!
This is from Jon Myers, CEO of Earplay, with an important update to follow our partnership announcement last week. I’m writing to let everyone know that the short teaser experience for The Orpheus Device won’t be launching on Alexa Enabled devices for Halloween season. We have worked with Amazon on this and we totally understand and support the decision that the teaser experience does not meet the public policy guidelines for Alexa.
As explained in our release last week, the teaser experience content is not necessarily suitable for children. Some audiences may find it to be troubling, and it pushes boundaries with interactive audio horror, in keeping with how stories in the World of Darkness universe often grapple with unsettling themes. We originally created the teaser experience as a demonstration for White Wolf fans at Grand Masquerade, where it was met with excitement and appreciation. It is clear from our beta testing and recorded feedback sessions that the material is unsettling, and that it can provoke intense emotional responses that many fans will enjoy. (It is called World of Darkness for a reason.) We’re still very excited to release this teaser content to our fans on iOS and additional platforms, so we’ll update everyone during November as we make it available to you. More details and materials for both the teaser experience and the full length interactive audio project will release in the coming weeks.
We continue to work closely with the Alexa team at Amazon, so take heart that this does not have any effect on The Orpheus Device full length title expected to release later this year on Alexa Enabled devices. Our Alexa team contacts at Amazon have worked very hard to help us at this stage with our skill, which includes The Orpheus Device, and other projects. I interact with them almost daily, and we’re impressed by the personal touch they bring to their developer relationships. Just as we are nurturing a new storytelling medium, they are nurturing a new distribution platform by building trust with an audience who allows these devices in their homes. We’re proud to be part of the early adopting community and we have many future plans with Alexa in addition to The Orpheus Device. We’ll continue to grow with the Alexa platform and focus on other titles as well, including:
- Codename Cygnus Remastered, an updated Alexa release of Mission 1 of the original interactive audio drama, also expected this year
- Pugmire, a family-friendly fantasy adventure set in a world where dogs have inherited the world from humankind, expected early in the new year
Our mission at Earplay is to nurture the exciting new medium of interactive audio storytelling, which means we’re exploring all genres and styles of expression, commercially as well as artistically. It’s an emotionally powerful medium, built upon the aesthetic roots and techniques of radio drama, whose watershed moment with the War of the Worlds broadcast indicates just how emotionally powerful audio drama can be.
To tide you over until you hear from us again, here’s a short audio spot for The Orpheus Device teaser experience. You can also click the button below to head over and sign up for email notifications about release platforms and timing.