Hogwarts Legacy, the open-world Harry Potter adventure set at the famed wizarding school, will launch during the 2022 holiday season on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Windows PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X. Avalanche Software and Sony Interactive Entertainment showed about 15 minutes of gameplay on Thursday afternoon, during a State of Play livestream devoted to Hogwarts Legacy.
Players got a glimpse of Hogwarts Legacy’s character creation, some of the activities they’ll encounter inside and outside the school, and a brief introduction to the story tying it all together. Hogwarts Legacy is set in the late 1800s, about 100 years before Harry Potter enrolls.
In Hogwarts Legacy, the player character is a new wizard or witch, except they’re starting as a fifth-year student. So the introduction will bring players up to speed on the game’s systems and controls, as well as bring the character into the present story. That involves some sort of intrigue involving goblins and dark wizards. The tutorial stages appear to involve investigating a goblin rebellion with the all-new NPC, Professor Figg. Later in the 15-minute trailer, a “darker path” was hinted at, if players choose to pursue it.
Hogwarts Legacy also appears to touch all the familiar traits of an action RPG, including crafting (of both potions and magical items), skill and perk trees, and friend and follower parties, where NPCs add special talents to the adventuring group. Hogwarts’ secret Room of Requirement can be found inside the academy, and it serves as a customizable hub area between story missions.
Though the game fits into the overall Harry Potter canon, creator JK Rowling is not involved in Hogwarts Legacy’s creation. Immediately after announcing Hogwarts Legacy in September 2020, last Warner Bros. Games distanced the project from her in light of Rowling’s public, and transphobic, remarks on gender identity.
So the reception Hogwarts Legacy gets from the general public will be closely watched. Many LGBTQ advocates have already renounced their fandom for the larger realm of Harry Potter works, and consider supporting the game to be directly supporting Rowling and her views.
Others have also noted the game’s former lead designer maintained a YouTube channel where he supported right-wing positions and aired similar cultural grievances. That developer left Avalanche Software under a cloud in March 2021.