“Harry Potter” Is About to Invade the Muggle World (Again)

Image Credit: Warner Bros.

People have gotten to play and review Harry Potter: Wizards Unite and no, I’m not at all jealous why are you asking?

If you’re just being read in on this forthcoming bit of Harry Potter magic, it’s coming your way from the people who brought you PokemonGO and is based on the same model of turning the real world into one huge mobile gameboard.

Here’s the setup:

Image Credit: Niantic

There’s been a breakdown of magical order in the years since the conclusion of Deathly Hallows known as a “calamity” or “existential crisis.” You (the player) are a volunteer for the Ministry of Magic as part of the “Statute of Secrecy (SOS)” task force, and your job is to secure various magical objects that have been stolen and are in danger of being revealed to the Muggle world.

As with PokemonGO, you can only see the items you’re hunting through your phone as you walk around a 3-D map of the real world – except littered with castles, greenhouses, and magical inns.

Image Credit: Niantic

You also have a scope you can use to find, fight, and free magical beings by tracing patterns with an onscreen wand. Oh, and you can travel on a career path – auror, professor, or magizoologist (love or hate Fantastic Beasts, they’re integrating it completely into the universe in this game). Plus it has virtual cosplay.

Y’all. I have such grabby hands.

Image Credit: Niantic

Bottom line? Soon, it’s going to be a lot easier for Potterheads to find their people in real life – they’ll be the ones shouting spells at their phones on the city bus.

Warner Bros. and J.K. Rowling are not directly involved but have given their blessing to Niantic, the Google-spin off company behind what seems to be a can’t-miss hit. The company has taken off big time since PokemonGO, with their tracked players walking a total of 573 million times around the earth and forming 190 million “friendship” connections in just 4 years.

Though reviewers are reporting that there are significant mechanics to learn, none have been too intimidated to continue and most report that the virtual helpers are good enough to get you through.

Image Credit: Niantic

The game is free, though you can speed up your progress with purchased coins (but what’s the fun in that?), and the company says that what’s been shown to reviewers is only the tip of the iceberg – they’re adding deeper and deeper layers to what they see as a “forever” game.

In fact, reports are in that Niantic seems to be as immersed as the rest of us, quoting Dumbledore with respect to their brain-child:

“Of course it’s all happening in your head, but why should that mean it’s not real?”

I’m in, 100%. Where and when do I sign up?