I've always been adamant about taking my games and taking the hype stoked by thoughtful marketing with a grain of salt. With Hogwarts Legacy, this was a more difficult task than most, as not only was the news about the game everywhere before it was released, but the ten-year-old kid in me eager for a fifth book could not wait to get my hands on another mystery set in the Wizarding World. But that part of me has been left irritated at times.
The environment in Hogwarts Legacy is incredible.
The tutorial section of Hogwarts Legacy is beautiful as it is. However, this does not hold a floating candle to the meticulous and loving detail with which Hogwarts Castle was recreated. I couldn't help but enjoy just wandering the many passageways and corridors, and Peeves being, well, Peeves, helping to make the castle feel real.
All of the little details shine through in crisp, clean graphics. I've had very little trouble with aggressive pop-ins or loading textures in a Harry Potter game.
You may take Hogwarts Legacy as slowly or as swift as you want to go.
If you're like me and spent too much time searching for tapestries, the castle alone is chock full of side quests and puzzles that distract you from continuing with the main story. They're also quite enjoyable to play, especially items that only require you to cast a spell on them.
The combat in Hogwarts Legacy is both interesting and even dangerous at times.
Avalanche software has done a fantastic job of balancing what was once an innovative, but at times rudimentary, magic technique into something that could be extended into gameplay. While generally adhering to the spirit of the Wizarding World's magic, it made me think twice about how to setup my spell wheels.
On normal difficulty, I've found myself relying more on Stupefy than I expected, as taking a few errant hits quickly leaves me reaching for Wiggenweld potionions. There's also a wide variety of enemies available to fight, and they can react very differently to certain spells, forcing me to change tactics in order to defeat enemies effectively.
Some of the gameplay mechanics in Hogwarts Legacy make no sense.
The inclusion of an invisibility potion that requires either a lot of effort from Galleons to create makes no sense when my character is literally opening a lock with magic, too. Even with inventory expansion, everything from completing Merlin Trials to selling three-quarters of all the loot I just found becomes repetitive.
Roleplaying in Hogwarts Legacy is awkward and limited.
I have been least impressed by this particular aspect of Hogwarts Legacy. I remember reading a book series that required its characters to contemplate their actions even when they were made in the name of doing the right thing. In the book series, using dark magic would leave you shunned in wizarding communities, and unforgiving curses were a one-way ticket to Azkaban.
Hogwarts Legacy seems to want to tell a story about the consequences of exercising great power in a selfish manner. I've received no information from the Headmaster's Office, not even House Points taken. I've not yet unlocked them, but I'm just not sure how much I'll enjoy unforgiving curses being brought into the mix.
Hogwarts Legacy's world may become richer as the film's narrative unfolds.
I'm cautiously optimistic at this stage in the game. It's entirely possible that I just haven't reached the conclusions of my actions, and the game will conclude satisfyingly. Most other aspects of the game appear to have been handled with great care, which gives me hope.
My capacity to explore rapidly expands, not just in Hogwarts Castle but throughout the area. I'm still interested in learning more and more and am fond of looking back at historical references and memories of a series. Either way, I'm more determined than ever to see this story through to its conclusion.
If you want more information about our coverage of Hogwarts Legacy, check out Pro Game Guides' How to Avoid Losing Gear from Chests when your inventory is full in Hogwarts Legacy and Hogwarts Legacy. All Potions, their ingredients, and where to find them