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Hogwarts Legacy: The Final Preview

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We do not live in a world rich with great Harry Potter games. Nobody harbors warm feelings for the horde of chintzy, cynical movie tie-ins that plagued the PS2 and Xbox during the mid-2000s.

So, when Portkey Games unveiled the big-budget Hogwarts Legacy in 2020, it was clear that the studio was aiming spectacularly high with its interpretation of Harry Potter.

After a two-hour hands-on, I can say with confidence that the Wizarding World has rarely looked better. The lilting charm, cockeyed whimsy, and high-fantasy hijinks of Hogwarts Legacy is rendered with dogmatic servitude to the books, while the combat and exploration — the game part of this video game — is robust enough to rope in more casual fans of the fiction.

Unfortunately, it's all happening at the exact moment the world is reconsidering their lifelong ties to one of the greatest stories ever told.If you haven't been keeping up with the information drip, Hogwarts Legacy takes place in the late 19th century — and therefore it operates independently from some of the more familiar touchstones of Potter lore. (No Voldemort, no Dumbledore, no multitude of Weasley surnames.) You play as a fifth-year transfer student that will be built with a potent character creator; denoting complexion, hair color, eyebrow shading, and yes, body types, vocal tenor, and the choice to be referred to as either a "witch" or a "wizard." Afterwards, you'll quickly be implanted directly into the day-to-day scholastic rhythms of Hogwarts.

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