Hogwarts Legacy is one of the most impressive games in the Harry Potter universe to date, and it stands out as one of the most enchanting RPGs around, too.
Putting out a game for a monumental franchise can always be a little challenging, especially when it’s not set in the exact time period that fans know and love. This isn’t an issue for Hogwarts Legacy, though, as the lore is well-written.
If you’re curious about when the game is set, which characters are in it, or even if you can play Quidditch in the game, I’ll be diving into that in this post. I’ve been a fan of the Harry Potter universe for well over a decade and it’s been a joy to read up on the new lore.
So, grab your broomsticks and head to Platform 9 and 3/4. Here’s the entire backstory of Hogwarts Legacy explained in a quick and easy guide.
This article contains mild spoilers, please read at your own discretion.
The Time Period
Hogwarts Legacy is not set in the same time period as the original Harry Potter series. Even the books and the films aren’t technically set in the same time period, though, so it’s worth looking at that quickly for context.
The first Harry Potter book is set in 1991, aside from the opening section which takes place in 1981. The final book is set in 1998 and the epilogue finishes up in 2017.
Unlike the books, it’s believed that the films were actually set in the 2000s. There’s nothing that explicitly says this in the film series, but there are clear visual cues and giveaways. The main pointers are the outfits, the hairstyles, and the technology.
The Hogwarts Legacy time period is vastly different to these two specific timeframes. It’s set in the 1800s, with most fans believing that 1890 is the actual year due to a newspaper clipping that appeared in a pre-launch trailer.
The game has stuck closely to 1800s design principles and technology for the most part, with a rich, detailed world that has a clear vintage aesthetic and feel.
The dragons help to make it feel more old-timey, too.
There are some key events that take place in the 1800s in the Wizarding World that will undoubtedly be a part of Hogwarts Legacy in some shape or fashion.
In this time period, the Daily Prophet has only been in action for just over 50 years. The first issue came out in 1743, and there are sure to be interesting stories or even Ministry propaganda to contend with in the game.
Speaking of the Ministry, the British Ministry of Magic came into existence in 1707. In the grand scheme of the game, this makes the Ministry still quite new for the time period that the game is set in, so we’re sure to see some Ministry magic (or mayhem) in Hogwarts Legacy.
In Hogwarts Legacy, you play as a 5th year student in Hogwarts.
There are plenty of ways to customize your character in the game and tailor the experience, but the core story of the player character will be the same for everyone.
To be more specific, your character is set to uncover secrets about the Wizarding World. There are numerous enemies and challenges to contend with in the game, including Dark Wizards and Goblins who are staging a rebellion together.
The Goblin and Dark Wizard alliance will play a huge part in Hogwarts Legacy, and part of the game will involve you stamping out Goblin hideouts and learning more about why the rebellion became a thing in the first place.
Your character will also go on a journey to discover more about their ancestors.
It turns out that your character is part of a line of an ancient bloodline that can use their power for good or evil. You’ll get to choose between working with the power or shunning it at some point during the game, with the aid of Professor Fig.
There will be more mundane parts of school life to contend with in the game too, like your O.W.L.s exams and general classes. There are 8 main classes to take part in at Hogwarts, and plenty of extra-curricular ways to learn and develop your character too.
Due to the time jump between Hogwarts Legacy and the original Harry Potter books and films, there aren’t many fan favorite characters in the game.
That’s not to say that there aren’t any at all, though.
Were you disappointed to not see Peeves the poltergeist in the Harry Potter movies? If so, you’ll be happy to know that he’s in the game, along with other beloved ghosts like Nearly Headless Nick and The Fat Lady.
Some characters in Hogwarts Legacy have ties to fan favorite characters, like Professor Phineas Nigellus Black. As his surname might suggest, the grumpy Hogwarts Headmaster is a direct ancestor of Sirius Black.
There are other characters with ties to the main franchise, like the Deputy Headmistress. Professor Matilda Weasley appears to be an ancestor of the Weasleys from the main movies and books.
Despite the lack of main series characters, the roster of characters in this game is diverse and interesting. The Professors all have clear personalities and quirks, and the other students that you’ll be studying alongside are unique as well.
Almost all the main locations from the movies and books can be found in Hogwarts Legacy. The bulk of the game happens in Hogwarts itself.
You’ll be able to explore the entire castle, including the common rooms for all the Houses and various classes, all taught by different Professors.
There are heaps of side quests and puzzles in this game, and Hogwarts itself is full of small Easter eggs and nods to the lore for fans to uncover. Keep an eye out for any familiar locations or symbols, as chances are, you’ll be able to investigate them further.
If you’re a Quidditch fan and you’re hoping to get to fly around the Quidditch pitch, you’ll be sad to know that the sport is not a part of the game. Flying brooms are available in the game but there are currently no ways to play Quidditch.
There are other fan favorite locations to check out in the game, including the Forbidden Forest and Hogsmeade Village. Considering the huge focus this game has on fantastic beasts and taming them, the Forbidden Forest is a particularly interesting location to check out.
If you’re playing on PlayStation 4 or 5, Hogsmeade will be an important zone for you. There are PlayStation-exclusive quests that take place in the all-wizard village, paying homage to the rich history of the zone and the magic that takes place within it.
For those who haven’t heard much about Hogsmeade before, it’s a zone in the Harry Potter universe that has been around for as long as Hogwarts.
A wizard named Hengis of Woodcraft founded Hogsmeade when trying to escape persecution from Muggles. It’s played host to other important events, like a Goblin rebellion in 1612.
Magic is one of the most important parts of the Harry Potter universe, and it plays a huge role in Hogwarts Legacy. You’ll be able to use famous spells like Accio and Lumos during your play through, with plenty of others to pick and choose from where needed.
Hogwarts Legacy doesn’t veer away from the Harry Potter franchise much in terms of magic lore and mechanics. In fact, it sticks true to the source material and follows the same principles for magic spells, beasts, items, and potions.
Core principles of the existing magic lore still apply in Hogwarts Legacy.
For example, Gamp’s Law of Elemental Transfiguration still applies in the game. This law presents 5 exceptions to transfiguration, the most prominent of which stating ‘food cannot be conjured out of thin air’ which even applies to the Room of Requirement.
Magic beasts are a particularly big part of Hogwarts Legacy, which will be a delight for fans of the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them part of the Wizarding World. You can tame and befriend a variety of beasts in this game, including Nifflers and Mooncalves.
The location where your new magical friends will live is a place called the Vivarium, which is inside the Room of Requirement.
The Room of Requirement is a legendary location in the Harry Potter universe, and it plays a big role in Hogwarts Legacy. If you’re unfamiliar, it’s a magic room that appears in Hogwarts when people are in desperate need of it.
The first reference to the Room of Requirement in the Wizarding World is in the 1900s, as it was the storage place for the Mirror of Erised.
It’s also referenced in the lore that Dumbledore visited the room in 1927 to mull over his pact with Grindelwald and their tumultuous relationship. Dumbledore visits the room throughout the lore quite frequently for various reasons, such as needing the bathroom, taking a Portkey, or simply to hide things.
The Room of Requirement even has a specific form that appears frequently in the lore, known as the Room of Hidden Things. This is how the room appears when people need to store something or hide something, and it’s where Harry finds Rowena Ravenclaw’s Diadem.
Now that you know more about the game and the lore, it’s time to decide which version of Hogwarts Legacy to get your hands on if you haven’t already. Some folk may be wondering whether to get the Deluxe edition or not, or even the Collector’s edition.
Make sure to look at how to import your wand and link your accounts to the game, too. Hogwarts Legacy is a game that you can really tailor to your own preferences, so having your wand and house set up is a great way to make it feel even more real.
If you’re looking for more Hogwarts-inspired video games, take a look at some of the other incredible Harry Potter games that you can play. There’s lots to pick from, including AR games, classic RPGs, and even sports titles.