Hogwarts Legacy: Review


This game was reviewed on Playstation 5.

Reviewed by: Amanda Martin

Set well before Harry Potter ever set foot in the castle, this story tells the tale of a transferred student, just about to join other 5th year students. The journey to school, however, is not as smooth and easy as you would hope. Thrown into a world of dark secrets, it is now your purpose to get to the bottom of them, and to use your own mysterious powers in the process. You are free to be whoever you want to be in this world, with customisable characters that include trans options. And the custom options even include your wand, of which you can change the core, the length and even the type of wood it's made from. All of this combined ensures you feel fully immersed in this world, and it makes the story truly your own.

There are many things fans of the series will already be familiar with, one of which being the Room of Requirement. This space is also fully customisable with the right recipes, from floor and wall coverings to placing your plant pots in a different wing from your cauldrons. You're also able to rescue many species of magical beasts and house them within vivariums in order to keep them safe from poachers which are prolific in these lands. These vivariums represent different environments, from the seaside to highland ruins. It's important to care for these beasts by making sure they are well fed, and providing toys for them to play with. When treated well, these beasts provide you with resources that can be used to upgrade and improve your gear. This is important for ensuring you always have the edge over your enemies. You can even breed these beasts, and the babies are simply adorable. You can also visit many different recognisable areas, such as the Great Hall, the Quidditch pitch, and the common rooms, with even more areas which are not so well-known. With the use of your handy Revelio spell, you can find hidden field guide pages that contain more information on these places that really help to broaden out the lore.

The game itself is absolutely breathtaking, from the mountains to the famous lake and all the surrounding hamlets. The castle itself is presented with such beautiful detail, with many nooks and crannies just begging to be explored. The environments feel smooth, and are a joy to traverse, whether it be on foot or a more exciting method of travel! As well as visiting the classic locations such as Gringotts and Hogsmeade, you can also find yourself in a cosy little village or a foreboding goblin tunnel. These areas are filled with collectable items and activities, one of which are the Merlin trials. These are small puzzles that, when completed, grant you a larger gear inventory. If you do find that your inventory is full, you can sell extra items for coins, that can then be used to purchase potion supplies, plant seeds or transfiguration recipes to help make the Room of Requirement your own unique space.

The characters within this game are also wonderfully presented. Side quests are an absolute joy, providing good rewards for your endeavors. There are friends you can make within these walls that have their own specific story lines, which all feel relevant and linked to the overall story. Of course you can't forget the teachers, whose faces you won't recognise but their surnames seem to ring a bell... As well as main quest related classes, you are also presented with extra assignments, made to help you catch up with your peers. Upon completion you are awarded with a new spell, which can be used to access new areas, and also to unleash more pain on your foes. These spells can be equipped and customised on an almost weapon-wheel like system, with skills allowing you to have even more spells equipped, making combat and exploration feel even more smooth.

If you're looking for even more content to immerse yourself in, the game offers you a selection of challenges. These challenges offer rewards for every milestone reached, and encourage the player to truly make the most of this experience. These include exploration challenges, combat challenges and questing challenges. As well as filling out the content, they also serve as a welcome distraction if the prospect of completing your Field Guide seems overwhelming.

An important thing to make all the trophy hunters aware of is to keep count of how many butterfly chests have been opened. This is because these collection chests are not represented in the map total, and seem to be a hidden collectable number. Hunters can also take a deep sigh of relief as the Accio pages are not counted towards the field guide completion, as there have been reported cases of these pages not registering after being collected. This title does provide a very satisfying platinum trophy, however it might seem a bit unnecessary to have to replay the first hour or so as each of the different houses.

Definitely a must play for fans of both the magical world of Harry Potter, and of a gorgeous open world RPG, with the only downfall being the overly repetitive Merlin Trials. A 9/10 experience.

Reviewed by: Amanda Martin