Regardless of where you stand on J.K. Rowling and her vocal position against trans people, one thing all Potter fans can agree on is that there is real anticipation for the upcoming Hogwarts Legacy.
It’s everyything fans have ever wanted! This is a real quality game, with an original story, allowing fans to play as wizards and roam Hogwarts in open world. On top of that, I would argue that a strong future for the Wizarding World was always in gaming; what couldn’t be done further in books and movies could live on in this medium. I dare say there could even be a day when other wizarding schools and locations could be visited around the globe! The possibilities are endless!
Regardless of the hype many fans are feeling uneasy as their favorite magic IP is still owned by the author that has go one to say some pretty damning stuff. Sigh*
In attempts to secure the game’s performance upon release the studio behind it has announced that the game will feature a transgender option for character creation. Is this a positive? Sure! It would be a positive for ANY game to create more inclusive character customization options. The context of this case however does not make the action an actual solution to the Rowling issue. The bottom line is, so long as Rowling owns the IP she will still profit from the game sales.
I, like many, am truthfully struggling with this! The woman who boosted literacy around the globe, wrote stories about friendship, love, courage, loss, evil, and goodness, the woman who stood up for gay rights and women’s rights! I am not a fan of cancel culture, but I can understand how some might not want to support a person who is this vocal against a vulnerable group and at the same time- really want to play this F****** game.
So, no, adding a transgender custumization feature does not solve the issue. All of us at the end of the day will still be faced with the same decision come release. That being said, there are some possible alternatives to at least reduce profit while still getting to enjoy it.
1: Share: Instead of everyone getting their own copy, you can make a deal with a group of friends to buy the game and share among yourselves.
2: Wait it out: The game might be a flop so there’s that! If it’s a great success, you can still try and hold on to wait until the game reduces in price. We all know games on the online store drastically cut down over time and reduce for sales events as well. Doing so can minimze the profit the game makes.
3:Secondhand: Don’t buy it directly from retail but wait a bit to go online to buy a used copy. Buying used copies of the game creates no profit for the studio and thus for the owner of the IP
At the end of the day many might say it doesn’t matter either way and they’ll make their choice based on that. That has to be alright too. We can’t dictate what others do or do not do with their money or values. All we can do is make the choice for ourselves.
The fact is the game has been made and the Rowling has already made some money off of it. If you want to have fun, that’s fine! If you want to dodge the purchase and not support Rowling, that’s fine too! You can take some comfort in knowing either or- buying a game about wizards will not make or break your moral compass.