How Edinburgh-based firm Krotos gave Avengers: Age of Ultron a monster
An Edinburgh-based audio software specialist is attracting increasing interest from film, TV and game studios thanks to its innovative vocal processor software.
Krotos has developed audio software that is now being used by Hollywood film and game studios. The company’s software – Dehumaniser – is a vocal processor which allows the production of high quality monster and creature sounds, in real time.
Orfeas Boteas, founder, Krotos:
I think Edinburgh is a perfect base for tech start-ups, There is great support, there are a lot of grants and programmes available. I don’t think the same level of support is available anywhere else in the UK."
Dehumaniser has been used recently in the blockbuster Marvel Studios movie Avengers: Age of Ultron and by numerous games designers as well as TV and advertising executives across the entertainment industry.
It’s quite the success story for a product that began life as a Masters project by University of Edinburgh student Orfeas Boteas. The 29-year-old from Athens arrived in Scotland to study sound design in 2011 and has since built up a business employing ten staff at an office in Haymarket.
“I was studying for an MSc in Sound Design at The University of Edinburgh, and Dehumaniser started as my final year project. I came up with the idea of making software that would be fully inclusive, work in real time, and still be completely customisable. I started work on the commercial version of Dehumaniser, which we released in November 2013.”
Boteas decided early on to give away a prototype of his Dehumaiser app for free.
“I had hundreds of downloads, and people started e-mailing me, giving me feedback, so I built up a database of potential customers right away.”
So far, the company has grown organically and received various grants and awards including the EDGE Higgs Award for global and scalable technology-based business. As a result, Krotos are looking to raise a first round of investment this year in order to scale up.
“I think Edinburgh is a perfect base for tech start-ups,” he said. “There is great support, there are a lot grants and programmes available. I don’t think the same level of support is available anywhere else in the UK.”
As well as The Avengers, the software has been used in Walt Disney’s 2016 Jungle Book movie, TV series like Sleepy Hollow and Finding Big Foot and video games like Doom, Sonic, Evolve and Far Cry 4. The list is still growing.
“We’re always hearing about new games or movies that use our products, which is exciting. Many of our clients are based in California because a big part of the film and games industry is based over there.”
“I would love to see Krotos grow to become an international industry leader in the audio field. We’re going to keep developing innovative technologies and unique tools for both professionals and everyday users. We have a lot of exciting things coming up.”
To experience the software first-hand, there is an iOS version of Dehumaniser that runs on mobile devices, including the iPhone and iPad, that can be downloaded from the Apple app store.
Discover more: Invest Edinburgh spoke to Krotos founder Orfeas Boteas