Updated: December 30, 2021 12:12:59 pm
Electronic Arts had almost produced an MMO (massively multiplayer online game) based on the Harry Potter series in the early 2000s. However, the project was later killed by the company due to a lack of faith in the franchise’s longevity.
The information comes from Kim Salzer, former director of product marketing – EA (2000-2003). In a Twitch interview with The Real Brandolorian, she spoke about some cancelled games from the company – one of them being a Harry Potter MMO that she was directly involved in. The title even had a beta version built out, and the team was extremely confident in the product.
However, it was “killed, for lack of a better term, because EA was going through some changes at that time.” Turns out, the company never believed that the IP would have a shelf-life longer than a couple of years. The game was supposed to feature a combination of online/offline experience, where the developers would mail physical Harry Potter-themed prizes and ribbons to players worldwide.
— The Real Brandolorian (@Brandolorian17) December 21, 2021
It is unfortunate news for fans, but still an understandable decision. Between 2000 and 2003, Harry Potter only had two films come out and the property was nowhere near popular as The Lord of the Rings franchise. Following those years, EA continued to hold the rights until 2017, where they released single-player games that were directly built upon the movies.
The ownership was then transferred over to WB Games and Portkey Games, which are currently working on ‘Hogwarts Legacy,’ an open-world role-playing game that is set in the 1800s – long before the birth of Harry Potter. Players can create their own custom wizards and embark on a whimsical journey through the iconic magic-laden castle and the surrounding, dense Forbidden Forest. Players can pick houses, learn new spells, brew potions, battle dark wizards, and more.
Hogwarts Legacy is expected to release sometime in 2022, on the PlayStation 5, Playstation 4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and Windows PC.
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