Gaming forum ResetEra has banned discussion of Hogwarts Legacy, as the upcoming Harry Potter RPG game struggles to cast off the spectre of the Wizarding World’s founder, J.K. Rowling.
In an official staff announcement, general manager ‘B-Dubs’ writes “after continued internal discussion, we began to start outlining the issues put forth by Rowling and the game in question and each time, and as we discussed it all, we kept coming back to the simple fact that Rowling is not only a bigot but is actively pushing, in her position as a wealthy and famous individual, for legislation that will hurt trans people.”
They go on to summarise that “she uses the influence and money gained from her success with Harry Potter to push transphobic legislation,” in turn leading the moderation team to “expand [its] prior ban on promotion for the Hogwarts game to include the game itself. There will be no OT and no discussion of this game.”
The post ends with a reminder that “we do not allow for advocating or metacommentary on content ban decisions, which are decided by the mod team. Any that we see, whether for or against, will be met with threadbans at a minimum.”
Rowling has come under fire for numerous transphobic remarks in recent years, but her involvement in Hogwarts Legacy remains unclear. While Portkey states on its official FAQ that “J.K. Rowling is not involved in the creation of the game,” it goes on to clarify that the developers “collaborated closely with her team on all aspects of the game.” What this means is uncertain, but either way Harry Potter as a whole has largely been tarnished by her comments.
Twitter discourse surrounding the game has been mammoth, and with the Hogwarts Legacy release date just around the corner, it will no doubt continue to drum up controversy.
The creator of the Harry Potter series, JK Rowling, has made a number of transphobic remarks on social media in recent years. Warner Bros. has the licence to make games based on Harry Potter. While the details of that deal aren’t publicly known, and WB Games says “J.K. Rowling is not directly involved in the creation of the game”, it is likely that, as the creator and owner of the Harry Potter IP, she will earn royalties from its sales. If you’d like to learn more about transgender equality or lend your support, here are two important charities we encourage you to check out: the National Center for Transgender Equality in the US, and Mermaids in the UK.