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June 16, 2024

Hogwarts Legacy Breaks Sales Records Despite Controversy

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Jan 9, 2024

Hogwarts Legacy, the highly anticipated Harry Potter open-world role-playing video game, has defied expectations and controversy by selling over 22 million copies since its release in February 2023. This makes it the fastest-selling game in history based on a literary property and the best-selling game globally in 2023.

Massive Global Success Despite Boycott Campaign

Prior to release, Hogwarts Legacy faced calls for boycott over controversial comments made by Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling. However, these boycotts failed to significantly dampen sales. In its first two weeks, Hogwarts Legacy sold 12 million copies globally, the biggest launch ever for a Harry Potter game.

By April, sales had topped 17 million copies despite persisting boycott efforts on social media. The game continued to sell strongly, rapidly becoming the best-selling game in the U.S. in 2023. Last week, publisher Warner Bros finally confirmed the game has now sold over 22 million copies globally in less than a year.

Transforming the Fortunes of WB Games

The runaway success of Hogwarts Legacy has profoundly impacted publisher Warner Bros, whose gaming division has struggled commercially in recent years. Last year, WB cancelled numerous projects and appeared ready to sell off its gaming business.

Hogwarts Legacy has completely transformed WB Games’ fortunes. It wasn’t just the top-selling game of 2023 globally – it was also the best-selling boxed game in the UK last year, ending a decade-long run of dominance by EA’s FIFA games.

The CEO of Warner Bros Discovery has praised Hogwarts Legacy as “a great example of our gaming strategy“, consisting of high quality releases based on Warner-owned IPs. The game’s success seems to have convinced Warner Bros to invest more heavily in gaming rather than sell its games division.

More Potter Games on the Way

Buoyed by Hogwarts Legacy’s massive sales figures, Warner Bros has now confirmed they are developing more games based on the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. In an interview last week, WB Games president David Haddad said:

“We have so much more planned in the years to come for Harry Potter that will excite fans new and old.”

While no further details on these new Potter games have emerged yet, there is speculation WB may be planning some kind of online multiplayer experience. Trade analyst Piers Harding-Rolls told GamesIndustry.biz:

“WB will be looking at ways to expand it into a live service, and probably soft-launched, mobile game… they’ll be thinking what other types of games they can make around the Wizarding World.”

A separate single-player Quidditch-focused Harry Potter is also rumored to be in very early development.

What’s Next for Hogwarts Legacy?

As for Hogwarts Legacy itself, substantial future content updates are planned. Developer Avalanche Studios announced prior to launch they would support the game with regular patches, improvements and multiple DLC releases.

At least two major paid DLC expansions are known to be in the works:

  • One DLC introduces a new storyline set in a completely new location
  • Another allows the player to visit Azkaban wizard prison

Free updates will also add new features like transfiguration classrooms and the ability to tame magical beasts. An ambitious Creation Club system akin to Skyrim’s is also planned, enabling fans to create their own quests and content.

With Hogwarts Legacy proving so enormously popular, it’s likely Warner and Avalanche will continue expanding the game for years to come. Its 22 million sales so far may merely be the beginning for what shapes up to be an ever-growing Wizarding World online platform serving Harry Potter fans for the next decade or more.

So despite pre-release controversy and boycott campaigns, Hogwarts Legacy has emerged as a record-breaking global phenomenon, transforming the fortunes of publisher Warner Bros while delighting Harry Potter fans hungry for a massive open-world Hogwarts adventure. This is just the start of a new era of Potter games capitalizing on the enduring appeal of J.K. Rowling’s magical universe.

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AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

To err is human, but AI does it too. Whilst factual data is used in the production of these articles, the content is written entirely by AI. Double check any facts you intend to rely on with another source.

By AiBot

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

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