It’s been a while since we’ve heard anything about the long-rumored wizarding RPG Hogwarts Legacy, but the game is indeed in the works. From the look of the reveal trailer, it looks like Hogwarts Legacy will have all kinds of wizard school activities we’d expect from a wizarding world RPG.
Instead of the usual motley crew from the books, Hogwarts Legacy takes place long before The Boy Who Lived. Portkey Games and Avalanche Software say that you’ll be able to create your own Hogwarts student, explore an open world, and uncover secrets about ancient magic that may affect the future of the wizarding world.
Avalanche hasn’t apparated any serious details about the gameplay just yet, but we’ve rounded up some screenshots from the reveal trailer that paint a picture of what kinds of activities your student will get up to if not exactly how they play. There are pet owls and potion classes and the sorting hat and more.
Here are all the details we know so far about this brand new wizarding world RPG.
When is the Hogwarts Legacy release date?
Hogwarts Legacy will launch sometime in 2022. It was originally planned for this year but announced in January 2021 that it would push back into the following year.
“Creating the best possible experience for all of the Wizarding World and gaming fans is paramount to us so we are giving the game the time it needs,” Portkey Games said.
Check out these Hogwarts Legacy screenshots
We don’t know a whole lot about Hogwarts Legacy just yet, but we can say for certain based on its reveal trailer that it looks great. Above are some screenshots from the trailer to get a look at how Avalanche has designed its 1800s version of Hogwarts.
What is the Hogwarts Legacy story?
Avalanche Software and Portkey Games say that Hogwarts Legacy follows the wizarding world lore set out in the original Harry Potter novels but is an original story from the studio, not written by JK Rowling.
You’ll play as a student attending Hogwarts in the late 1800s, attending classes and learning magic alongside other students. “You have received a late acceptance to the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry and soon discover that you are no ordinary student: you possess an unusual ability to perceive and master Ancient Magic,” the studio says. “Only you can decide if you will protect this secret for the good of all, or yield to the temptation of more sinister magic.”
Is Harry Potter in Hogwarts Legacy?
Nope! Remember, this is set in the 1800s so the kid who lived is several generations from being born. Harry Potter won’t be in Hogwarts Legacy but since you can create your own character you could probably design a wizard student who looks like him if you really want to.
Here’s what we know about character creation
So far, we know that we’ll be able to make our own Hogwarts student in legacy, but we haven’t gotten a look specifically at character creation yet.
According to a Bloomberg report in 2021, Hogwarts Legacy will let you choose a masculine or feminine voice, body type, and dorm placement as “witch” or “wizard” independently when creating a student.
“Some members of the Hogwarts Legacy development team have fought to make the game as inclusive as possible, pushing for the character customization and even for a transgender character to be added,” Bloomberg says. “There was resistance from management at first, the people familiar with the project said, but currently the character customization is included in the game.”
What’s the gameplay like?
Avalanche is calling Hogwarts Legacy an “immersive, open-world action RPG.” The immersive part may or may not mean a whole lot, but it sounds like you may be able to freely explore Hogwarts and other familiar locations while leveling and customizing your student. They’ve mentioned that you will be able to choose your student’s school house at the beginning of the game.
“[Players] will grow their character’s abilities as they master powerful spells, hone combat skills and select companions to help them face off against deadly enemies,” Avalanche say. “Players will also encounter missions and scenarios that will pose difficult choices and determine what they stand for. “
Avalanche doesn’t let on if those companions it mentions are other students or pets or maybe even patronuses, but we’re sure to find out later. As for the deadly enemies, you can spot what might be a dark wizard enemy in the reveal trailer screenshots up above.
Which locations are in Hogwarts Legacy?
There may not be familiar faces in Hogwarts Legacy due to the time period it’s set in, but it looks like we can definitely expect some standard places. Avalanche say that it’s an open world game, so there will likely be plenty of exploring to do in and out of the castle.
It should come as no surprise that we’ll be spending a lot of time in Hogwarts Castle itself as students. In the reveal trailer we got a good look at the expansive great hall and a look at the exterior we know so well too.
The nearby village of Hogsmeade shows up in the first trailer too, so we can likely expect to wind down after classes in some of the local shops.
Also from the trailer we can spot a venture into the Forbidden Forest where a student is fighting against those unknown evil wizards of Hogwarts Legacy.
There’s reason to be skeptical of Hogwarts Legacy’s attempts at inclusive representation
Hogwarts Legacy is going back in wizarding world history, but the game is coming with a fair bit of real world history that’s worth knowing about.
In recent months, JK Rowling has made a series of transphobic comments that have upset many longtime Harry Potter fans, making her connection to Hogwarts Legacy a significant question. The story of Hogwarts Legacy is an Avalanche creation, and on an FAQ on its website WB Games says “JK Rowling is not directly involved in the creation of the game, however, her extraordinary body of writing is the foundation of all projects in the Wizarding World.”
When Kotaku asked Warner Bros. whether Rowling would receive royalties from sales of Hogwarts Legacy, a representative declined to comment.
Some fans also raised concerns over videos created by Hogwarts Legacy lead designer Troy Leavitt, who formerly ran an anti-social justice YouTube channel. Leavitt’s videos included his opinions supportive of Gamergate and references to the #MeToo movement as a “moral panic.”
“I’m happy to say that, even though I disclosed my YouTube channel to WB Games, it didn’t appear to be an issue for them,” Leavitt said in a video from 2018. “Not that they endorse anything that I’ ve said, of course, but at least they seem more concerned with making good games than with pushing some kind of a social justice agenda, so there is hope.”
On March 4, two weeks after the videos recirculated online, Leavitt tweeted “I have made the decision to part ways with Avalanche Software. I have nothing but good things to say about the game, the dev team, and WB Games.”