The first gameplay footage of Hogwarts Legacy will be screened in a PlayStation State of Play livestream dedicated to the upcoming Harry Potter game on Thursday, March 17 at 5:00 PM EDT. Avalanche Software and WB Games told fans Monday that the 20-minute broadcast will take about 14 minutes of Hogwarts Legacy gameplay on PlayStation 5.
First announced at PlayStation’s PS5 Showcase in September 2020, Hogwarts Legacy is an open world adventure set in the famous wizarding academy sometime in the 19th century. The project sparked criticism and controversy from its inception, largely due to the history of Harry Potter creator JK Rowling’s transphobic sayings and writings. The day after it was revealed, Warner Bros. Games distance themselves between the game and Rowling, saying that she was not directly involved in its creation.
But the controversy hardly ended there. In March 2021, two months after Avalanche Software announced Hogwarts Legacy was delayed until 2022, the game’s chief designer left under a cloud created by his YouTube channel, expressing sympathy for Gamergate and espousing other right-wing cultural grievances.
A Bloomberg report, also in March 2021, suggested that: Hogwarts LegacyThe ‘witch or wizard’ character creation engine was designed for gender inclusion – meaning players could choose voice, body type and other characteristics without making them gender-essential. The developers of Avalanche are said to be demoralized by the ongoing controversy, as their work on the game began before Rowling turned himself and the Harry Potter franchise into a lightning rod for transphobia.
News about the game itself has been scarce since its September 2020 announcement, so it’s anyone’s guess what Thursday’s showcase will highlight. However, character creation seems like a likely candidate, as does a good sense of the game’s environment and set design. Hogwarts Legacy has no concrete launch date yet; maybe that will be revealed too. The game will launch on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Windows PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X.
The Hogwarts Legacy State of Play can be viewed on Twitch or YouTube. It will be followed by a post on PlayStation Blog with more details about the game.