Thanks to PlayStation’s latest State of Play, we got to see the upcoming Harry Potter game, and although I don't think I need to mention it by name because everybody and their mother must've been there for the reveal, I mean Hogwarts Legacy. I woke up from a nap and sat down to watch it with my wife, who warned me I might not want to know about it because it was incredible and won't be out 'till the holidays.
I am going to be honest with you, back when I first heard of the game I figured it would be a very long time before it was out, so I have absolutely been avoiding anything about it. I knew little of it, in fact, it had been so long since I dabbled in information about Hogwarts Legacy that I had actually kind of forgotten why I cared so much. All of that distance and apathy dissipated as I saw the graphics because it is so much more gorgeous than I could have imagined, and it continued to melt off of me by the gallons as I went deeper into the video.
I have never in my entire life experienced what I did today. Every single segment that passed was somehow better than the last and, after a few minutes, I thought the game couldn't physically offer more, yet it continued and continued. In fact, to top it off, I would think at times "I hope you can do blank" and whatever I hoped, the video would show. I am going to be honest, I got close to pinching myself because the video was reading my mind and showing me what I wished for the most. I started to think it wasn't real life anymore.
And that is the exact point in which all of the excitement melted off and got replaced by cynicism. I had seen and felt this before a thousand times, sitting beside my wife watching a video of an upcoming game that promises incredible amounts of content, looks terrific, and is too good to be true. So many times this has been the case that I have finally learned why that saying exists in the first place. It is true, usually, things really are just too good to be true.
I sat there already disappointed. What they had shown me was a glimpse of a game I have a very tiny amount of hope I will ever get to experience. I can scarcely fathom how a game like this could exist, especially with only a few years under its belt. I watched as the developers spoke about it, and although their passion and excitement shines through their faces (specifically talking about you, Alan Tew), I have come to understand that there is a limit in games.
I don't know what it will be, but I have a thousand fears and I am here to tell you: lower your hopes. The game and the developers are not evil, they are not bad (unless you crunch employees, then you're evil and bad), it is just too much. I'm scared that all of these features will be implemented… but poorly.
No game has ever gotten this right and I hope that those beautifully excited developers don't regret giving so much hope to those other gamers that (unlike me) may not have grown to learn to lower their expectations. I do not wish them to fail — quite the opposite — I hope they achieved everything they obviously put so much work into. As for me? I don't think I will be able to fully harness all the excitement I had at the beginning of the video, as I just know in my heart of hearts that when games promise so much, they tend to barely scratch the surface.
Regardless, I wish all the luck and success of the world to the developer team. They seemed like amazing people. And for the rest of you, I would strongly suggest you manage your expectations to avoid disappointment as nothing has been a bigger game-killer than hype.