Pokemon Go’s developer Niantic released late last year a teaser trailer for its new augmented reality game Harry Potter: Wizards Unite. Niantic is crafting the game with co-developer Warner Brothers Interactive, in conjunction with the Portkey Games publisher label. Wizards Unite will put a Wizarding spin on the Pokemon Go foundation and bring JK Rowling fans a load of excitement and adventurous fun.
The Pokemon Go realm is all about hunting and collecting, while the Wizarding world is focused on immersing the players into its world. Players will see a blend of both worlds when they play the game, set to release sometime in the future. A release date has not yet been revealed, however the CEO of Warner Brothers is aiming for its debut in the summer of this year. The Wizarding world will now be an immersive world with RPG-like features.
There are many differences and similarities between the two worlds players will soon find out. For instance, the Pokemon Go parallels are front and center. In the Harry Potter world, you can get multiple items from the Greenhouses and inns, not unlike the PokeStop system in the former. The map works the same, but with the Wizarding World theme, adding crooked buildings placed throughout the map along with owls flying up above. The game will also include quality-of-life features such as AR plus, a photo mode, and the promise of improved battery life optimization.
Wizards Unite is set in present day, years after the Deathly Hollows events took place, but there is a Calamity that has put the Wizarding world at risk. In the game, magic-related objects and creatures have been scattered, and you will be in alliance with the International Statute of Secrecy. It’s a law designed to protect the Wizarding World from Muggles; you as the player will be recruited as a member of the Secrecy Task Force to keep the secret of magic contained.
Similar to Pokemon Go, players must go out and find traces of magic in order to contain them, then trap the traces like you would a Pokemon while entering an AR-optional encounter. For example, Harry Potter the (Foundable) being trapped by a dementor the (Confoundable), Harry’s Nimbus trapped in ice, and Buckbeack the Hippogriff in chains. To free them you will trace a glyph on the screen to cast the right spell. There are also spells and attacks that will be included in the game, but you must use offensive and defensive spells accurately to cause serious damage as well as to keep yourself healthy.
There are also dungeon-like places where a group players up to five can take on challenges to fight against dark wizards and creatures for rewards. There is a lot going on in this game, so if you are up for the challenge, keep your calendars open for its release.
Harry Potter: Wizards Unite will be available on Android and iOS some time this year. Android users can pre-register on the Play Store now. For more information, check out the main website here or Eurogamer’s hands-on feature.