Hogwarts Legacy is an immersive, open-world action RPG set in the world introduced in the Harry Potter books. It’s quite easily one of the 2023 most highly-anticipated games. The game takes place at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in the 1800s. Players can create their own Wizard or Witch and explore the magical open world, attend classes, fly on magical creatures, fight casting spells, make potions and much more.
Since before its official announcement, there has been a cloud of speculation surrounding key aspects of Hogwarts Legacy, the Harry Potter RPG. In particular, how the game would handle combat. Finally, the new gameplay from Avalanche Studios demonstrated the combat mechanics and developers present in the studio during the showcase and they explained a lot about this game feature.
In the Harry Potter world, there are a lot of “creatures corrupted by a magical force, powerful goblins, and sinister witches and wizards”, and fighting and duelling will be a big part of the game. As a result, Hogwarts Legacy Combat is far more complex than I expected, it’s built around a combination system. In fact, players can expect some interesting mechanics, and fluid, fast pace fights. Hopefully, on hard difficulty, the game will offer a good challenge for players.
Spells and Combos
There are a couple of mechanics to go through here. The players will have over 20 combat spells available to choose from. This includes blasting curses, stunning spells, defensive charms, damage spells, force spells or control spells, enchanted weaponry and more. However, players can slot to up 16 spells in so-called diamonds, a UI element that allows them to quickly access all slotted spells. At the start of the game, only four spells in “one diamond” will be available and as players progress through the game by attending classes and completing quests more combat spells will become available.
The next very important part of combat is base attack. All spells have a cooldown, so players need to combine spells with the base attacks to create combos. There are also a few special “finishes moves”, depending on your style and spells as seen on previews gameplays.
The Protego spell creates a shield around our protagonist. However, the enemies can have shields too, and to shatter them, players must use the spell with color that matches the enemies’ shields color.
Just like in every game players need to watch their health bar and use potions if necessary. We don’t know if potions will take a big part in Hogwarts Legacy combat as this feature was only mentioned in the latest Gameplay Showcase.
Targeting an enemy gives information about enemies’ health bar, level and name.
Whenever the is a halo around the character’s head, it means there is an incoming attack. Additionally, sometimes players need to break free or block an incoming attack, and each time there will be a notification on the screen when and what button the player must use.
We haven’t seen critical damage numbers, so whether crit-multiplayer exists or the game has only raw numbers we don’t know.
Players can even use an environment and objects to defeat enemies. During the gameplay we saw how a player using the “Vingardium Leviosa” spell tossed a barrel into one of the enemies, dealing them a significant amount of damage and smashing the object into pieces.
During the Gameplay Showcase, developers took us on a trip to the secret fighting club, where we can duel other students and practice our spellcasting skills and combos on a training dummy. Also, it’s worth noting that we saw “the Adept round” and the battle against 3 NPC students. Therefore, we can expect different types of enemies there, as well as stages on higher levels. Probably even some kind of progression related to the Fighting Cub itself.
Finally, outside of combat, Hogwarts students will also learn a variety of non-combat spells referred to as “Essential Spells” which will be useful in specific contexts like exploration, story missions, or sidequests.
There are four difficulties: story, easy, normal or hard, so everyone should find a setting that best suits their playstyle. The combat is dynamic, with impressive graphical effects and sounds. Hogwarts Legacy is still a few months away from release, so we’ll have to wait and see what the full, finished combat actually looks like. Hopefully, we’ll learn more about the game in the months ahead.
Don’t forget that you can unlock some free accessories in Hogwarts Legacy right now, including a stylish new robe, mask and more!
Thanks for reading!
Hogwarts Legacy release dates:
- February 10, 2023 for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S and PC
- April 4, 2023 for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One
- July 25, 2023 for Nintendo Switch
All information is based on pre-release sources. We’ll update it as soon as the game launches on February 10 2023
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