Hogwarts Legacy Review

This off-brand Harry Potter looks like he is nearly forty.

Avalanche Software, developers most known for making games based on films and the Disney Infinity series, have now made an actual video game. The game is Hogwarts Legacy and is published by Warner Bros. Games under its Portkey Games label.

In Hogwarts Legacy, the player controls a student at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in the 1880s and learns to use different magical abilities while helping other students and professors.

The game took about five years to develop and was subject to a few delays. It was also boycotted by some, which seems to have done no harm to the game sales or damage to the Harry Potter licence.

Most of the outcry over the game was related to the author Joanne (J.K.) Rowling’s views on transgender rights. The developers addressed some of these concerns. While it now seems inclusive, I doubt it was initially meant to be like that.

Speaking of J.K. Rowling, she should know better and stop talking trash. I am not sure why rich and famous people can’t just enjoy their good fortune and relax in the sun away from social media. Like her mum does.

Bubble trouble, I smell something terrible coming from this pot.

It is debatable whether the game world is more diverse than it would have been in the real Scotland of the 1880s. There are examples of diversity in Scottish history, such as Andrew Watson, the first black person to play the modern version of football. Of course, it doesn’t matter in a world where children have enough power to kill and maim many.

I don’t really care about any of the controversies. My main concern with Hogwarts Legacy is that I don’t care about the world of Harry Potter (known as the Wizarding World). I have never read the books and only seen bits of the films. Like other iconic properties, such as James Bond, and the Royal Family, Harry Potter has managed to sell the idea of Britishness to the world. Which some see as a good thing, but that is beside the point. I have no interest in the world in which the game takes place.

You see that house? You can walk to it.

The game never elevates itself above being more than a Harry Potter theme park ride. If you don’t like Harry Potter, you will get nothing more out of the game than a rubbish open world game about wizards and other fantasy tropes. It isn’t even a well-made open world game. It follows the Ubisoft style, from games like Assassin’s Creed, but one that was made about ten years ago.

The game has a guaranteed audience of millions of fans who love anything related to the franchise so much that you can sell them fake drinks based on the books. Hogwarts Legacy, just by being a finished product was never going to struggle to sell well, even more than the previous Harry Potter games. That said, at least the developers of Hogwarts Legacy have built an actual game, if not a very satisfying one.

Hogwarts Legacy has character customisation, a room you can add tables and other wizardly contraptions, potion making, and plenty of gear and quests. It just isn’t entertaining to play.

World of Warcraft looks a lot different these days.

Something you might notice is the grade of the voices. They are wild in terms of quality. Some sound like they have been pitched up or down instead of getting another voice actor to do them.

If you are a fan of Harry Potter, you will likely have a wonderful time exploring places from the books and films. While there is nothing wrong with that, it doesn’t make for a good video game in its own right.

Overall I would rather play a new Bully (Canis Canem Edit) video game than anything related to Harry Potter. Bully did the whole prep school, boarding school idea masterfully.


Developer: Avalanche Software.

Publisher: Warner Bros. Games.

Platform: PC.

System: PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and Nintendo Switch.

Release: 10th February, 4th April (PlayStation 4 and Xbox One), and 25th July 2023 (Nintendo Switch).

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