Having leaked all the way back in 2018 with no confirmation of it actually happening, Hogwarts Legacy was finally announced as part of the PlayStation 5 showcase last September. The title is being developed by Avalanche and published by Warner Bros. Games under the Portkey Games label and looks to thrust the wizarding world of Harry Potter into the next-generation of gaming.
Hogwarts Legacy is set to take place during the 1800s, quite a few years before 'The Boy Who Lived' was born. The game sets up players to experience student life at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, and they will reportedly embark on a dangerous journey to uncover a hidden truth of the wizarding world.
Disappointingly though, fans were hit with the news in January that Hogwarts Legacy was delayed until 2022, with Warner Bros. Games simply stating that they need more time to make sure the new game meets fans' expectations.
Since fans have a bit longer to wait before they can play Hogwarts Legacy, it's time for The Direct to take a look at the 6 Harry Potter elements that the new wizard RPG needs to include.
The prospect of a multiplayer system for Hogwarts Legacy seemed in doubt after a posting on the official website's FAQ's stated the game was essentially a single-player videogame. However, that post has since been deleted, and considering the game's delay in release, it could be that Warner Bro. Games decided to include a multiplayer feature.
The closest fans have come to a cooperative experience in the wizarding world was with the LEGO Harry Potter games; however, neither game offered online support for the co-op mode.
If Hogwarts Legacy is able to get this right, then players will be in for a real treat. The Harry Potter books and movies alike focus on friendship at their core, and giving players the opportunity to experience the story alongside their own friends would bring back that feeling in a very refreshing way.
In most of the older Harry Potter games, the developers didn't really get the Hogwarts game of Quidditch quite right. EA's attempts in the original book tie-in games either included the sport as a mini-game or just avoided the topic all-together.
To the publisher's credit, though, the release of Harry Potter: Quidditch World Cup gave players the most true-to-story experience yet, starting with the choice of one of the four Hogwarts houses and taking them all the way to the house cup, before choosing their national allegiance for the Quidditch World Cup.
Since the experience has been done right, it's time for a game like Hogwarts Legacy to perfect the gameplay for the magical sport itself.
The game of Quidditch is not particularly complicated as a concept, so the developers wouldn't have to worry about new players struggling to understand the rules.
Something to consider is that it may be problematic to allow players to select a preferred position while playing Quidditch, with 'seeker' for each team destined to be the most popular. But this could be avoided by making Quidditch in Hogwarts: Legacy heavily focused on a 1v1-type system, leveling the playing field for all gamers.
Additionally, if players are also given the choice between the four houses - Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw and Slytherin - then the games between each house could result in win points for the winning house, and the house with the most points at the end of each month could be rewarded with something like in-game items for their efforts.
Bringing a competition aspect to the videogame version of Quidditch will greatly improve the player base for the game mode, and ensure that Quidditch games are widely available for all players.
On the other hand, a draft system for Quidditch is also possible, with players earning fictional players to add to their squad with assigned positions, and receiving higher quality players the better they perform in-game. While this would allow a league system to form with better players placed in higher divisions, the possibility of a pay-to-win aspect is evident with this sort of system, ironically something EA has regularly come under fault for.
3. DUELING CLUB
Potentially the biggest missed opportunity apparent from the Harry Potter movies was the neglect for Dueling Club. A short scene in Chamber of Secrets gave audiences an insight into some students' favorite pass time, but bigger plot points in the film ultimately took the focus away from the club, leaving the topic relatively untouched.
The Prisoner of Askaban video game took the implementation one step further, allowing players to battle in teams of three against other iconic characters on the franchise. The Half-Blood Prince game explored a Dueling Club system as well, but the focus of the game shifted more towards a combat-based experience, with the club's inclusion largely avoided by players. Then, Deathly Hallows Part 1 and 2 came under heavy fire for its major change in dynamic, seeming more of a third-person shooter rather than an exploration into the wizardly world, not at all meeting fans' expectations.
Hogwarts Legacy needs to allow players to duel with each other, either as part a team or in a solo affair, giving each wizard the opportunity to show off their skills with a wand in a competitive setting.
Along with a competitive edge, this unique setting could also provide an adequate space for players to test out different spells available in the game, giving them a chance to figure out their preferred 'loadout' of sorts, to prepare them for future in-game battles.
It's likely that players will have the opportunity to partake in raids of some sort, similar to systems present within Destiny titles. So combat will be included in Hogwarts Legacy in some aspect; however, challenging your friends to a duel in The Great Hall may just be a playable feature as well - and an addictive one, too.
4. UNRESTRICTED ACCESS TO HOGWARTS CASTLE
The Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix and Half-Blood Prince video games gave fans the best access to the Hogwarts castle across the eight games. There was rarely an area which was inaccessible to the player in the pair of releases, giving the truer sense of immersion that is required for a game of this sophistication.
Hogwarts Legacy needs to take this one step further, with no locked doors in sight. Give players the opportunity to go wherever the like, whenever they like. Say a group of friends wants to get together and mess around with spells. Let them use the Room of Requirement. Want to practice your Quidditch skills? Make your way down to the Quidditch pitch. Need to perfect your disarming spells? Head over to Defense Against the Dark Arts.
The iconic Great Hall, situated at the front of the castle, was known for its iconic presentation, constantly changing its appearance depending on the season. Allowing access to and updating these areas of the castle throughout the year will help keep the game feeling fresh, as well as potentially offer some limited-time game modes or activities.
5. OTHER ICONIC POTTER LOCATIONS
The Forbidden Forest and Hogsmeade Village have already been confirmed to be visitable locations within Hogwarts Legacy, but this isn't much of a surprise given their proximity to Hogwarts Castle itself.
The Harry Potter series is synonymous will multiple iconic settings, including Diagon Alley, Gringotts Wizarding Bank and many others. One thing we'd love to see is that the universe of Harry Potter is explored even deeper, with numerous locations from the books and movies alike to be accessible and explorable within the game. Including these locations will only cause players to further immerse themselves within the game, allowing them to interact with locations they already know and love.
It's also possible that the game may feature elements from the other Potter-related franchise, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, so gamers could even venture through New York and other locations from the two films as well.
Both Gringotts and Diagon Alley would have purposes as well, with players starting their journey here, purchasing their first wand and robes from the multiple vendors on the street. It’s unconfirmed at this stage as to when the story finishes, so could fans see their wizards graduating from Hogwarts and looking for other areas to explore, like the Ministry of Magic?
6. HOUSE REWARDS SYSTEM
House Points are an integral factor in the day-to-day workings of the Hogwarts school. Points can be awarded for doing good deeds, correctly answered a question in class, or they may even be won in an inter-house Quidditch match. Points can even be revoked if one is caught breaking any of the school rules.
It's already been confirmed that players can choose their desired Hogwarts House at the start of their journey, with Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw and Slytherin the four potential homes for players. This differs from the original story, with The Sorting Hat usually set to determine first-year students fate on their first day the castle.
Giving players the choice of their Hogwarts house is a smart decision as long-time fans have always had their preferred houses anyway, so this inclusion was probably an easy choice to make.
It would be great to see this points system implemented in Hogwarts Legacy, with players being rewarded for completing tasks or achieving certain goals within the game. These points could possibly also be shared on a worldwide scale, giving a total number of points earned for each house and allowing a season format to determine the successful house at the end of each term.
Cosmetic items and gifts could then be rewarded to the winning house, with the losers becoming more determined to earn more points within the next season.
Hogwarts Legacy promises to bring the Wizarding World to life, and it's disappointing delay until 2022 will give Warner Bros. Games time to implement a number of these great features. For the game to hit the high expectations set by the fans, time and care must be taken to ensure it is ready for release, especially considering some recent disastrous game releases. We can now only hope that Portkey Games listens to the requests of fans, and creates a true recreation of the Harry Potter world for us all to enjoy.
Hogwarts Legacy will be available in 2022 for PlayStation5, PlayStation4, Xbox Series X, Xbox One and PC