The publisher of the upcoming title does all it can to distance itself from J.K. Rowling.
It has been rumored for quite some time, but we finally got the announcement of the latest entry in the Harry Potter video game series, Hogwarts Legacy. But it’ll actually be Potter-free, being set way back in the 1800s as you navigate thorough the iconic Hogwarts (you can see the announcement trailer here). If you aren’t aware, there’s been a lot of Harry Potter-related news lately, especially related to the original author of the books, J.K. Rowling, who has come under fire for making transphobic remarks. While it’s doubtful those controversies will have much impact in the end on how the game does, the publisher of Hogwarts Legacy wants you to know that she has no direct involvement in the game.
Since it’s not really in our wheelhouse, we won’t get into the nitty-gritties, but in a nutshell, Rowling has created a massive backlash of controversy due to multiple comments in relation to trans-people. There were reports that a lot of that also didn’t sit too well with the developer for this game, Avalanche Software, for instance. Shortly after the announcement of Hogwarts Legacy, WB Games and Portkey Games put up an FAQ up for the title, and three separate times seemingly moved to make sure you know that Rowling does not have direct involvement with this game, in both subtle and not so subtle ways.
“Q: What is J.K. Rowling’s involvement with the game? Is this a new story from J.K. Rowling?
A: J.K. Rowling is not directly involved in the creation of the game, however, her extraordinary body of writing is the foundation of all projects in the Wizarding World.
This is not a new story from J.K. Rowling.
Q: How does Hogwarts Legacy fit into the Harry Potter Wizarding World?
A: While Portkey Games are not direct adaptations of the books and films, the games are firmly rooted in the Harry Potter universe. While remaining true to J.K. Rowling’s original work, Portkey game developers chart new territory by creating fresh ways for fans to immerse themselves in the wizarding world.
Q: Will Hogwarts Legacy adhere to Wizarding World lore?
A: Yes. While Hogwarts Legacy is not a direct adaptation of the books and films, the games are anchored in Wizarding World lore. Avalanche is creating a unique gaming experience that is inspired by J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World, in which players will find new and unexpected locations, characters and story elements.”
Of course, Rowling is the creator of the IP and any Harry Potter merchandise or media will ultimately benefit her, so even without ‘direct involvement,’ the author will at least get paid. One just has to gauge how important is to them when Hogwarts Legacy releases in 2021.