Today, Niantic let loose with a big blast of official details of its upcoming ARG mobile game that takes place both in our world and in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. In Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, Niantic calls on us to solve the mystery of The Calamity. Chaotic magic has leaked into the world, and it’s our job to round up these “Foundables” and keep them from Muggle eyes.
Clearly, it borrows from the foundation of Pokemon Go and Ingress, but it will launch with many of the things that Pokemon Go took years to integrate. Foundables, like Pokemon, are more likely to appear at various real-world points of interest with the addition of a periodic Portmanteaus. These portholes open the wizarding world for you to step into. Even the most disgruntled Squib would find a 360-advanced AR experience in Ollivander’s Wand Shop enjoyable.
Of course, there are raids as in POGO, but in HPWU (Hip Woo? Can we make that a thing?) these are called Fortresses where you can join up with friends (or random strangers) to battle against Deatheaters and Dementors in real time. But breaking from its other game, HPWU allows players to take on different magical professions such as Aurors, Magizoologists, and Professors. Each of these classes adds unique abilities and skills that broaden a team’s dynamic.
Overall, there appears to be enough different about the game so that it doesn’t feel exactly like Pokemon Go with a Harry Potter mask, but there are enough similarities where some players might have the been-there-done-that feeling. Niantic hasn’t released a launch date – just a 2019 window – but look for Wizards Unite in the Google Play store for preregistration, and take a peek at our past coverage of the game.