Upcoming Hogwarts Legacy Game to Allow Players to Create Transgender Characters

Mar 19, 2021

Posted by: Jacob Hoggan

News, Products

The upcoming Harry Potter game Hogwarts Legacy, by Avalanche Software and Warner Bros. Games, will reportedly allow players create transgender characters. 

What this actually means is that players will be able to choose to customize their voice, body types and gender placement in dormitories. The game is an immersive, open-world action RPG which takes place during an unknown time period and allows the player to become a student at Hogwarts.

Watch the official PS5 trailer below:

The idea to allow for people to customize and make their characters transgender is a clear push back by the developers against J.K. Rowling for last years controversy. As many of our readers know J.K. Rowling published a series of tweets and a statement which reflected transphobic views and assumptions about transgender women. Leaky responded to this as part of a wider fan commitment to not allow transphobia within our community. This controversy has caused many in the community to question or stop their support of the Wizarding World franchise, which of course will include Hogwarts Legacy, as the use of Rowling’s IP means she will still benefit from sales of the game. The development team at Avalanche Software have, however, clarified that Rowling has no substantial input in the game’s development. 

The game has recently been involved in further controversy as the lead developer on the project, Troy Leavitt, quit Avalanche Software after his anti-social justice YouTube channel was uncovered, which included videos supporting GamerGate (an infamous campaign harassing women and those deemed “social justice warriors” and exemplifying the levels of sexism and misogyny within gaming culture):

He explained in a video, however, that his decision to retire from the industry actually came due to health-related family issues, and that the recent controversy over his YouTube channel gave further reason to quit, but was “not the cause”. Warner Bros. apparently did not apply pressure to him to quit, and Leavitt called coverage of the uncovering and criticism of his YouTube channel by press, which he thanked people for defending, “cancel culture”. 

The move to allow players to create a playable transgender character was reportedly pushed for heavily by the development team, however, Warner Bros. Games have not officially announced the decision. Den of Geek also points out that rather than necessarily being a ground-breaking move against Rowling’s transphobic views, this represents a broader move by RPG games to feel more immersive and customizable.

Hogwarts Legacy will release sometime in 2022 for PC, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X/S, and Xbox One.

The Leaky Cauldron is not associated with J.K. Rowling, Warner Bros., or any of the individuals or companies associated with producing and publishing Harry Potter books and films.