Hogwarts Legacy is an RPG that is expected to come out at some point in the future. Based on the name, it should come as no surprise to learn that it is set in the Wizarding World, which remains best-known because of the Harry Potter books but has long since expanded beyond them. However, Hogwarts Legacy promises to be something new.
It Is Still Being Made
There was some recent concern that Hogwarts Legacy might have been either canceled or otherwise impacted in a negative manner. This is because the title was revealed in September of 2020. After which, there has been either no or next-to-no information about Hogwarts Legacy other than a statement that it had been pushed back from 2021 to 2022. A lot of people got their hopes up because of the rumors that there would be a new trailer at The Game Awards 2021, with the result that they were very disappointed when nothing materialized. Still, it is important to note that the people responsible for making the title have made it clear that it is still being made. As such, interested individuals shouldn’t get too stressed out about Hogwarts Legacy being a total no-show.
Being Treated with a Strong Sense of Caution
The public has no way of knowing why Hogwarts Legacy is being handled in this manner. After all, businesses have very good reasons for keeping their internal decision-making a secret, meaning that it is very rare for outsiders to get a good look at this kind of information. Still, it should be mentioned that the same person who said that the title was getting a new trailer also went on to say that the title was being treated with a strong sense of caution. This is because the initial reveal happened at around the same time as the J.K. Rowling backlash, which had a damaging effect on Hogwarts Legacy as well as the rest of the Wizarding World. There is no way to tell whether this is true or not. However, it seems plausible enough under the circumstances.
Got Hit By the J.K. Rowling Backlash
Of course, J.K. Rowling would be the author of the Harry Potter books, which in turn, means that she is a key figure behind the Wizarding World as a whole. Generally speaking, she was well-regarded for quite some time. However, there has been a notable backlash in the late 2010s and early 2020s because Rowling has been voicing TERF sentiments. TERF is an acronym for trans exclusionary radical feminists. In simpler terms, it means feminists who hold transphobic views. One common example would be someone who is opposed to the statement that transgender women are women, while another common example would be someone who opposes transgender rights. TERFs are not well-regarded in the United States where most feminists and most LGBTQ+ supporters are supportive of transgender rights. In contrast, TERFs seem to have a stronger position in the United Kingdom.
It isn’t clear why the two sides have diverged so much from one another even though they are so well-connected with one another. However, that hasn’t prevented plenty of speculation on the matter. To name one example, there is speculation that transphobia in the United Kingdom was boosted by Mumsnet, which is an extremely influential parenting forum for women. Similarly, there is speculation that the relevant segments of the population came under more external pressure from the Christian right in the United States than in the United Kingdom. As a result, they became much more convinced of the need to stick together for the purpose of preventing themselves from being overcome separately in one country than in the other. After all, those segments of the population aren’t a single community so much as a collection of communities with shared aims plus some shared experiences, meaning that they aren’t just automatically guaranteed to go together. In any case, it is worth mentioning that TERF opinions are contrary to the professional conclusions of the mainstream medical authorities such as the American Medical Association, which should provide some food for thought.
Rowling herself has rejected the label of TERF. However, she has done a number of things that have convinced people to call her by that term. For example, there was the time when she tweeted in support of Maya Forstater, a researcher whose employment contract wasn’t renewed after she made transphobic comments. Similarly, there was the time when she tweeted in criticism of the term “people who menstruate.” As such, a lot of one-time Rowling fans haven’t reacted well to this, particularly since they see this as a betrayal of the ideals expressed in the Harry Potter books. Something that has had a very negative effect on the Wizarding World franchise as a whole, as shown by how the fansites MuggleNet and the Leaky Cauldron cut ties with Rowling.
Put In a Very Awkward Position By This
As such, the people behind Hogwarts Legacy were put in a very awkward position by this whole mess. On the one hand, they had to state that Rowling wasn’t involved with the title in a direct sense because a good chunk of their target audience is made up of people who are less than enthused by her opinions. On the other hand, they had to avoid disavowing Rowling too hard because there are serious limits to what they can and can’t do when they are working in a setting that belongs to her. For a time, there were those who tried to be sympathetic to the people behind Hogwarts Legacy by emphasizing them rather than Rowling. However, that sympathy withered a great deal when it turned out that the title’s lead designer once ran a Gamergate-adjacent YouTube channel. Currently, this controversy has cooled because so much time has passed with so little news. Still, it seems reasonable to speculate that it will reignite once interest in Hogwarts Legacy returns.
Open-World Action RPG
Regardless, it is known that Hogwarts Legacy will be an open-world action RPG, which to be fair, seems like the best option for a project of this kind and this scale. For starters, much of the appeal of the Wizarding World has always come from its setting, so it makes sense for an AAA title to provide interested individuals to explore it at their leisure. This is particularly true because of two additional factors. One, open-world games are extremely popular in the present time, so much so that an open-world setting is almost expected for games of certain genres. Two, Hogwarts Legacy is specifically set in a time when it can’t fall back on already established characters and already established stories, meaning that it is forced to lean on the setting even more than most of its counterparts. Moving on, action RPG is also the most sensible choice for such a title. Like open world settings, RPG elements have become extremely widespread because they are useful for giving interested individuals a sense of reward as well as a sense of progression as they play these games. However, it seems that Hogwarts Legacy will be making particularly good use of them because a good deal of the franchise’s appeal is the fantasy that anyone can discover that they are actually magical, thus enabling them to gain access to a secret, special world filled with wonders. As for why it is an action RPG, well, action RPGs enjoy a bigger potential player base than their classic counterparts, which makes for bigger potential returns. After all, traditional RPGs can be pretty dry, meaning that they would remove entire swathes of potential players because of their relative inaccessibility. Never mind how they would make it more difficult to sell the critical sense of wonder than something faster-moving and otherwise more dynamic.
Centered On Hogwarts
Naturally, Hogwarts Legacy will be centered on Hogwarts. Furthermore, it has been confirmed that other iconic locations such as Hogsmeade and the Forbidden Forest will show up in the title as well. Having said that, it is important to note that Hogwarts Legacy will be set in the late 19th century, presumably because that provides more creative freedom thanks to a relative lack of existing canon. Unfortunately, that means that little is known about the setting in that period. However, it might be worth mentioning that the late 19th century was a very interesting time in the real world. In Britain, this would have been the latter part of the Victorian era, which is named for Queen Victoria. Meanwhile in France, this would have been the Belle Epoque, which happened under the Third French Republic. In both cases, these were times of optimism for those countries because of the peace in their respective centers, their advancements in various spheres, and their ability to impose their will on other people on the planet because of those advancements. It will be interesting to see whether these things come up in Hogwarts Legacy, seeing as how the setting is isolated from the non-magical world for the most part but never 100 percent so.
The Protagonist Will Have a Special Background of Their Own
Perhaps unsurprisingly, it has been stated that the protagonist will have a special background of their own, presumably because that makes it easier to sell the fantasy. It is unclear exactly what this will mean. However, it has been stated that protagonist will have some kind of special power over Ancient Magic, which will have world-shaking consequences for the setting. Of course, chances are good that a lot of interested individuals would be more curious about the more common sorts of magic such as casting charms, brewing potions, and interacting with magical creatures, all of which have been promised for the upcoming title. Besides this, it has also been stated that the protagonist will be admitted to Hogwarts on a late letter, which is also important for various reasons. For example, this further reinforces the notion that they are exceptional. Similarly, an older protagonist opens up a much wider range of narrative possibilities. On top of this, that presumably makes it easier to target the title at older fans of the setting, which is rather important when the people who became fans when the Harry Potter books were coming out are now adults.
The Protagonist Will Be Customizable
Speaking of which, it should come as no surprise to learn that the protagonist will be customizable. Something that can make it much easier for people to immerse themselves in a narrative as well as identify with the protagonist of that narrative. The people behind Hogwarts Legacy have stated that there will be trans-friendly customization options, which was clearly meant to soothe potential players thinking about boycotting the title because of Rowling.
There Will Be a Morality System of Some Kind
A number of articles have made mention of a morality system in the title. Unfortunately, very little information has come out about this, meaning that we don’t know said system will entail. Still, this presumably means that players will be able to choose between different options in the narrative, which should lead to different options in the narrative. If this is in-depth, that could make for extra replayability. If this isn’t in-depth, well, suffice to say that there have been plenty of morality systems in video games that were little more than window dressing.
More News Will Come When It Comes
On a final note, interested individuals will want to keep a watchful eye out for further news. Currently, much remains unknown about Hogwarts Legacy. However, it is supposed to come out in 2022, with rumors claiming the latter half of the year. If true, marketing is bound to get going at some time in the months ahead, which should tell interested individuals everything that they want to know. Until then, the available information will be quite limited.