Prying into Pry

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If you have a smart phone, chances are you have used an app before. Apps have become extremely useful in people’s lives. From a place of entertainment on long bus rides, to a place to find information on the most recent breaking news story, apps have a variety of uses within our lives. Another way people are beginning to use apps is through digital storytelling. Danny Cannizzaro and Samantha Gorman used an app format to tell their Gulf War inspired story, and brilliantly used the unique elements that go along with such a format to their advantage.

Unlike any other digital story outlets, an app offers a great deal of different interactivity components to work with. A major element used is different touch gestures throughout the storytelling process. Depending on the chapter, pinching the screen in different directions cause certain interactive pieces to take place. For example, in chapter 1 among others, pinching and sliding your fingers away from each other causes the character you have embodied to open their eyes, which lets you see exactly what they would be seeing at that specific time. This gives the reader the ultimate insight into the characters and the story.

Pry also uses animated text to further accentuate parts of the story. Moving text due to certain touch movements done by the reader brings them further into the story. Flashing text is the best example of how the developers put the reader as close to the characters as possible. When the character is under distress, flashing text is put over the screen rapidly, which is quite unnerving to the reader as well. This deliberate uncomfortableness for the reader mimics the troublesome feeling the character is experiencing.

Although many apps like this are not out there yet, this could be the beginning of an entirely new genre of apps.


D. Cannizzaro, S.  Gorman. Pry. Tender Claws, 2015, Accessed 24 March 2017

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