Avalanche Software just showcased some of the upcoming Hogwarts Legacy’s gameplay at Sony’s latest State of Play, several months ahead of the game’s release. The newly revealed 14 minutes of in-game footage shows but a fraction of things players can expect to experience, including dueling with fellow wizards, brewing potions, flying on a broomstick (nobody mentioned Quidditch), and exploring the school’s entire campus in your free time. You can check out the video below:
Though the game was revealed at the Sony’s State of Play, as reported by IGN, Hogwarts Legacy isn’t actually a PlayStation exclusive title, but more on that later. Starting from the beginning of the game, players will be able to create their own character, like in any other RPG game, and be sorted into one of the four Hogwarts houses. We’re still to learn just how in-depth this character creation process will be and whether or not certain aspects of the character’s personality affect the gameplay, like in the upcoming RPG Starfield. It would be a nice addition, as it could further diversify the gameplay.
Players will be starting the Hogwarts Legacy game as a late-fifth-year student who has a lot of catching up to do. Harry Potter fans might be asking why this is the case, but the answer is quite obvious. It would be incredibly difficult to piece together a high-quality RPG with serious combat mechanics, dark dungeons, darker spells, and the darkest of monsters with an 11-year-old wizard as a protagonist. Though gaming titles have been known to exploit child-like appearances in horrific settings — remember 2007’s Clive Barker’s Jericho and the Firstborn?
The game’s combat system won’t rely on melee combat but ranged combat via spellcasting. Players will be able to combine dozens of different spells, curses, and charms to exploit the specific enemy weaknesses or abilities. And as in true RPG fashion, gamers will also be able to customize and enhance their character’s abilities with magical gear and spells learned and gained as one progresses through the game. This truly opens the doors of one of the most magical castles in fantasy fiction, allowing everyone to experience their unique Hogwarts adventure.
But don’t expect to meet Harry, or Newt Scamander anywhere in the game, as its narrative is set in the 1800s — decades before the events of the original Harry Potter books or more recent Fantastic Beasts films, which fired Johnny Depp. Instead of Gindelwald’s crimes, Dumbledor’s secrets, and Voldemort’s return, Hogwarts Legacy will focus on a possible conflict between the greedy goblins and wizards and the usual cast of dark wizards, witches, and dangerous beasts.
Hogwarts Legacy was originally announced for a 2021 release date, following a delay to 2022, due to various issues, including COVID-19 restrictions, which affected the entire industry, and the departure of the game’s lead designer. Not only that, but Warner Bros. also had to clarify that Harry Potter’s J. K. Rowling isn’t directly involved in the creation of the game, following a series of transphobic comments the author made online. This means that the Hogwarts Legacy doesn’t come directly from the fantastic pen of J. K. Rowling; it was inspired by her extraordinary body of writing.
In the end, and as promised at the beginning, the question of launch platforms. Despite debuting on Sony’s State of Play event, Hogwarts Legacy is, in fact, a multi-platform game, coming to PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, and Nintendo Switch, this holiday season.