Hogwarts Legacy Gamescom trailer introduces wizard zombies

A new trailer for open-world Harry Potter-verse adventure game Hogwarts Legacy premiered today during Geoff Keighley's Opening Night Live show, and it's easily the darkest look at it yet.

The trailer centers on the dark arts, a forbidden realm of magic that players will apparently become experts in (against the wishes of your professor). We see the player casting Crucio, a spell better known in the wizarding world as the Cruciatus Curse.

According to the Harry Potter wiki, it's one of the three Unforgivable Curses used to inflict "excruciating pain on a victim." It's the spell of choice for those nasty Death Eaters that Harry faces off with in Prisoner of Azkaban, though the Crucio cast by the player in Hogwarts Legacy looks a bit different. This version is red and distinctly evil-looking, which you'd think would be a good hint for our young protagonist to stay the heck away from it. Though, it wouldn't be a Harry Potter story without kids getting tempted into the dark side.

We also see the player face off against what I can only describe as wizard zombies, something I didn't know existed in the world of magic until now (though I really shouldn't be surprised). I don't mind the threat—it might be nice to have a mindless target to unleash super deadly magic on instead of irreversibly injuring my fellow classmates.

In case you missed the delay a few weeks ago, Hogwarts Legacy's new release date is February 10, 2023.

Catch up with our full list of Gamescom announcements from Opening Night Live and check our Gamescom schedule to find out when to watch everything else.

Morgan Park
Staff Writer

Morgan has been writing for PC Gamer since 2018, first as a freelancer and currently as a staff writer. He has also appeared on Polygon, Kotaku, Fanbyte, and PCGamesN. Before freelancing, he spent most of high school and all of college writing at small gaming sites that didn't pay him. He's very happy to have a real job now. Morgan is a beat writer following the latest and greatest shooters and the communities that play them. He also writes general news, reviews, features, the occasional guide, and bad jokes in Slack. Twist his arm, and he'll even write about a boring strategy game. Please don't, though.