Hogwarts Legacy is every die-hard Harry Potter fan’s dream come true. The game allows the players to create their own Hogwarts students, learn magic spells, and embark upon various adventures.
Hogwarts Legacy is set in the 1800s, years before the events of the Harry Potter series. Many wonder whether this makes the Hogwarts Legacy story mode integral to the universe or just a speculative take.
The fact that the game is a prequel allows the developers at Portkey Games to explore many untouched areas of the Wizarding World. Although, it remains to see just how much continuity there will be between Hogwarts Legacy and the Harry Potter franchise.
1. Is Hogwarts Legacy story mode canon?
The earliest that a confirmed canon Harry Potter work has been set is in 1927, which is Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. The Harry Potter universe has made it clear that it accepts prequel content as canon so long as the stories and characters remain consistent.
Hogwarts Legacy will likely not be considered canon within the Harry Potter universe. This is primarily because J.K. Rowling was not directly involved with the writing or development of the game.
Rowling’s endorsement is undoubtedly still a necessity regarding what is considered canon.
Portkey Games has said that Rowling’s works have heavily inspired everything in Hogwarts Legacy. Despite that, the game is a unique entry explicitly created for the fans by game developers who also appreciate the depth of the Harry Potter universe.
So, while it’s likely to be an authentic-feeling story that attempts to remain faithful to the series canon, it won’t be canon itself.
Hogwarts Legacy takes place during the 1800s, specifically the 1890s. The reason for choosing this period was that the players could see a Goblin Rebellion firsthand.
Since Hogwarts Legacy takes place a good hundred years before the birth of Harry Potter, almost nobody from the books or movies makes an appearance. The ghosts Nearly Headless Nick and Professor Binns serve as two notable exceptions.
Therefore, there has yet to be a confirmation regarding Hogwarts Legacy’s place in the Harry Potter canon. While it’s doubtful that the events of the game will ever be treated as strictly canonical, the game is well established on Wizarding World lore.
To that end, the game aims to be as lore friendly as possible, though certain concessions had to be made along the way.
2. Who are Percival Rackham and Charles Rockwood?
I. Professor Percival Rackman
Professor Percival Rackman was a wizard that worked as a Divination professor at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in the Tudor era and was the leader of the Keepers.
Percival Rackham grew up to discover that he possessed the rare ability to perceive and master ancient magic. He eventually received a late acceptance to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, having begun his magical education as a fifth-year student.
Percival was Sorted into Hufflepuff House on his arrival at the school. He was implied to have been a gifted student, as he once said that to master said gift fully, one first had to be well-versed in the other magic taught at Hogwarts.
Given his talent in the field, Percival presumably excelled in Divination class.
II. Teaching Career
Sometime after he left Hogwarts, Percival returned and became the school’s Divination professor. At one point, he worked under then-Headmistress Niamh Fitzgerald and became a colleague of Charles Rockwood and San Bakar.
Percival and his co-workers formed a small circle of trust known as the Keepers. They devoted themselves to the protection of ancient magic since they were aware of Percival’s unique ability and the dangers if the knowledge of how to wield ancient magic fell into the wrong hands.
Around 1485, Professor Rackham commissioned the goblins of the then-recently established Gringotts Wizarding Bank with the construction of a vault. It was given a number twelve.
Rackham and Charles Rockwood converted it into a test that could only be passed by those who, like himself, had the innate power to see and control ancient magic.
III. Mentoring Isidora
Isidora Morganach is a young witch with many similarities to Professor Rackham. Not only did she possess the same innate abilities for ancient magic as himself, but she also began her attendance at Hogwarts in her fifth year, just like he had.
Professor Rackham encouraged her to become his apprentice in ancient magic.
IV. Charles Rockwood
Professor Charles Rookwood was a wizard and a member of the Rookwood family. At some point during the Tudor era, he was the professor of Transfiguration at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. He was well-versed in the theory and highly skilled in applying this subject.
In his youth, he attended Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, where he was sorted into Slytherin House.
During his lifetime, he was a close friend of Percival Rackham and a member of the secret society, Keepers.
Rookwood considered himself a man of science and was guided by hard facts. He was pragmatic, direct, and focused. He was keenly observant and fascinated by how magic could be altered and used.
3. What’s so special about entering Hogwarts as a fifth year?
A student in their fifth year at Hogwarts was called a fifth year. Fifth years were typically 15 to 16 years of age.
The fifth-year was significant for the students because it was the year they sat for their O.W.L. exams. These would determine what N.E.W.T courses they would be permitted to take later in their education.
One of the most well-known points about the original Harry Potter stories is that the titular main character, Harry Potter, began his adventures as a first-year student.
On the other hand, Hogwarts Legacy has your playable character join the school late as a fifth-year rather than earlier.
While this may seem like a random decision, the reasoning is explained in the game’s lore for us to uncover today.
Immediately after starting the game and beginning the tutorial, it’s clear that your character possesses a rare form of magic and naturally masters new spells almost instantly. We play as a unique, gifted student who, despite never attending Hogwarts, has magical abilities surpassing most of our classmates.
Imagine being there for five years, being better than nearly every student you encounter, and making little to no progress in your magical development. A situation like this would be stranger than it already is.
We also look at it in another way. The first years will have minimal magical abilities. On the other hand, being a fifth year allows for quicker learning and more powerful skills, making the overall experience much more fun.
The last and perhaps the most critical part of why you start as a 5th-year student in Hogwarts Legacy is the game’s story.
Your character is responsible for uncovering ancient magic’s secrets while combating an upcoming Goblin Rebellion. Being slightly older is an advantage and allows you to do this more effectively with powerful spells and allies, as opposed to being an eleven-year-old child figuring out what’s happening.
Being older also allows your character to freely use Unforgivable Curses, to the dismay of everyone around you. It provides more freedom for playing without suffering the significant repercussions that a first year would experience.
If Hogwarts Legacy proves successful, Avalanche Software might produce some DLC for the game. If so, we could see its world expand with more locations ripped straight from the source material. Or the studio could create a side story that takes place before or after the events of Hogwarts Legacy.
We’ll have to wait and see.
4. About Hogwarts Legacy
Hogwarts Legacy is an open-world RPG from Avalanche Studio. The game places the player in the wizarding school of Hogwarts, allowing them to witness the iconic locations as a character other than Harry Potter.
The game has an expansive map that makes the game very immersive, even for people who are yet to read the books or watched the movie.
The mysterious, gripping storyline, with the vast areas to explored, either on foot or broomstick, makes it even more real life.