After the tremendous success of Pokemon GO, developer Niantic Labs is now casting a spell in conjunction with Warner Bros. Studios, along with the fittingly named Portkey Games, that will result in the creation of a Harry Potter-themed augmented reality (AR) game, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, expected to be released in 2018.
“The beloved Harry Potter stories have captured imaginations worldwide for more than 20 years and soon we’ll turn the fantasy into augmented reality, allowing fans and their friends to become wizards and witches,” John Hanke, Niantic CEO, said in a statement. The official description from Niantic has players “exploring real-world neighborhoods and cities across the globe... go on adventures, learn and cast spells, discover mysterious artifacts, and encounter legendary beasts and iconic characters.”
According to Niantic, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite will follow the formula of Pokemon GO, which was in turn influenced by the game Ingress, which allows people to collect items and defend locations in a similar vein
Although details of this game are scarce at the moment, it seems spellcasting and fighting beasts will be part of the experience. Rumours were abound that Niantic Labs would roll out a Harry Potter-themed AR game during the summer of last year, but were dismissed as false, most likely because Pokemon GO had just been created and was being rolled out. Rumours of Pokemon GO clones were abundant during this period as well, although now these rumours appear to be coming true.
According to Niantic, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite will follow the formula of Pokemon GO, which was in turn influenced by the game Ingress, which allows people to collect items and defend locations in a similar vein. Very few details have been revealed so far, but it has been stated that players will fight “legendary beasts and team up with others to defeat powerful enemies,” which is speculated to be in a similar fashion to raids in Pokemon GO.
With this being said and Niantic tapping into another nostalgic brand, it appears as though this will become a smash hit of 2018 in the vein of Pokemon GO and will reignite heavy interest in the wizarding world of Harry Potter. Personally, I am hoping they do not repeat the same mistakes of Pokemon GO that killed off a lot of its fanbase early on.