Hogwarts Legacy's Dark Magic looks wicked

Slytherin 4 life

Hogwarts Legacy image showing wizard using dark magic
(Image credit: Warner Bros. Games / Avalanche)

Like many gamers I've been eagerly anticipating the release of Hogwarts Legacy for years now, and ever since its jaw-dropping reveal earlier this year, my excitement has gone into overdrive.

So I was disappointed when Hogwarts Legacy got delayed recently into 2023.

But the maker of Hogwarts Legacy, Avalanche, has just gone and given gamers like me a consolation gift in the form of a brand new trailer for the game.

And this new Hogwarts Legacy trailer shows how you can embrace the Dark Arts and use Dark Magic in the game. And, simply put, that is something that I am all over.

You can check out the trailer below.

The Hogwarts Legacy trailer shows how in the game you can befriend a Slytherin student called Sebastian Sallow who, as he says to the player, "can teach you Crucio or I can cast it on you". Then, clearly after the player has made their choice, he confirms that "you've made you choice."

And, let me tell you, that on my first playthrough of Hogwarts Legacy when I'm offered that choice it is only going to go one way!

Being able to take a dark path makes Hogwarts Legacy better

Honestly, seeing that in Hogwarts Legacy you can make numerous decisions that also have consequences is just brilliant, as it will absolutely enhance immersion. And the fact that Avalanche extends that even to the player being able to learn the Unforgivable Curses and go proper Dark Arts wizard just adds to that. I want choices given to me, not taken away from me through omission.

Being able to play both good and bad guys is great fun RPGs, and let's be very clear here that Hogwarts Legacy is absolutely a Wizarding World RPG, so freedom to develop your character as you see fit makes sense.

Having Dark Magic potentially at your disposal also makes sense in terms of making the game's combat system the best it can be. I've been really impressed with what I've seen so far from the Hogwarts Legacy combat system, from duelling with other wizards to taking on monstrous enemies, with customisation of powers available, and you can't tell me that more options in terms of how you fight isn't a good thing.

For example I, like many other gamers, really enjoyed Star Wars: Fallen Order, but I did feel that game didn't deliver as much as it could have due to the inability to use Dark Force Powers. I mean, Kal would sit down on the power selection screen and you'd see a crescent moon of light side powers in front of him, and then a big space behind him where dark side powers could sit, but they were never offered.

Also, I think it is true of many games, that the 'evil' powers tend to be more fun to use than the 'good' powers. For example, back in the day the Jedi Knight series offered good Jedi the opportunity to use Force Push and Force Heal, while the bad Jedi got to dispense Force Lightning and Force Grip.

Honestly, just from a replayability point of view I think being able to go light or dark adds value to this game, as well as making it a more immersive RPG. Needless to say I will be lodging my Hogwarts Legacy pre-order ASAP.

The Hogwarts Legacy release date is now confirmed for 10 February, 2023, on PlayStation, Xbox and PC, with a Switch version to be released later.

Robert Jones

Rob has been writing about computing, gaming, mobile, home entertainment technology, toys (specifically Lego and board games), smart home and more for over 15 years. As the editor of PC Gamer, and former Deputy Editor for T3.com, you can find Rob's work in magazines, bookazines and online, as well as on podcasts and videos, too. Outside of his work Rob is passionate about motorbikes, skiing/snowboarding and team sports, with football and cricket his two favourites.