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Old 04-25-2018, 02:46 PM
masterofmystery masterofmystery is offline
 
Post Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery designer talks game plots & stories, MMORPG future

SnitchSeeker had the opportunity to speak to Matt London, senior narrative designer for the Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery mobile game earlier this year at A Celebration of Harry Potter in Orlando, Fla., about some of the key plot points, and what's to come.

Do note that there might be a few spoilers for the game for fans who just began playing this week, including future challenges, and the opportunity for the app to become a MMORPG. For more on what teachers players might meet, and if the likes of Hogsmeade Village and Quidditch will be part of the game, read below.


SnitchSeeker: When did this idea come about?
Matt London:
A few years ago, Jam City got into talks with Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment to create the Harry Potter video game that fans have been begging for for decades. Through that partnership, we at Jam City started development on the game and it’s been a labor of love for us all the way through, creating the kind of game that superfans like us really want to play. When I came on board as narrative designer, it was really early in the process, so I was fortunate to be able to help shape the direction of what the story was going to be. We knew that the story was going to be super important in this game.

SnitchSeeker: The decision for the timeframe of the story – before Harry’s time – how did that come about?
Matt London:
This was sort of a pet desire of mine. I was really fascinated with this decade because it was in between the Marauder era and the era when Harry and his friends are at Hogwarts. It was an era that didn’t have a lot of stories told about it.

SnitchSeeker: The ‘80s.
Matt London:
Exactly. You have to rely on some of the antecdotes that Ron tells about his older brothers’ time at Hogwarts to get a sense of what it’s like. So I really wanted to say, “Here’s this untapped section of the wizarding world. Let’s see what it’s like.” And there are so many benefits to setting the game here, too, like the fact that so many of my favorite professors were teachers at the time: Professor Dumbledore, Professor McGonagall, Professor Snape, Hagrid’s around. So it really feels like that pure Hogwarts experience that everyone wants to have without having to crash into Harry as he’s going on his adventures at the same time. In the game, you’re going to see a lot of things that are really familiar, but a lot of things that are brand new as well.

SnitchSeeker: So the idea behind the game. Why was that the focal point, the story?
Matt London:
To me, I think that mystery is the key component of what Harry Potter stories are all about. Each book has something about it that curious or strange, and Harry sets off learning new magical skills to investigate and figure out what it is to get to the bottom of it. We wanted to capture that part of the Hogwart’s experience, too. So in the game, you’re going to go to class, learn magic and then use those skills to investigate these mysteries that pop up.

SnitchSeeker: A lot of it’s based on the movies, but what about all the little bits you see throughout the books – like all the classes we never actually see onscreen? Are all those little tidbits going to be here?
Matt London:
There are a number of things that we have not revealed publicly yet, but based on the mission statement that we’ve laid out, setting the game in this time period, doing the totality of the experience of going to Hogwarts, you can think, “Who was the teacher of Care of Magical Creatures at this period in time?” So few Herbology lessons are shown in the films. There are a bunch of things that we’re going to get to see in this game for the very first time.

SnitchSeeker: Glad to know someone remembered Kettleburn was the teacher then.
Matt London:
Oh he’s around – with one arm and half a leg!

SnitchSeeker: Bill and Tonks were mentioned – any other familiar faces we might see?
Matt London:
You, the player, actually begin at Hogwarts the very same day as Tonks and Charlie Weasley. They’re all classmates of yours. Bill is an older student. We know that Bill becomes Prefect and Head Boy, so we’re actually going to get to watch some of those things take place over the course of the game. So those are a few of the familiar student faces that you’re going to see. In addition, there are going to be a number of new characters that are going to show up for the very first time – new student characters who maybe you’ve met a brother or sister of theirs, or a parent of theirs before. You’ll actually get to see some of these characters as well.

SnitchSeeker: How much creative input did you get from J.K. Rowling and Warner Bros for this?
Matt London:
For this game, we partnered with Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment and Portkey Games to create a really immersive, fully flushed out narrative RPG. Because we were working with Portkey, who is officially licensed … if you go and look at the mission statement for Portkey Games, you can understand that these games were created in partnership with J.K. Rowling working with Portkey. We connected with Portkey and WB to go through and make sure that everything is true to the vision that was laid out in a really authentic Hogwarts experience.

SnitchSeeker: In the game, the short-term mission is finding your brother. Are there long-term mystery goals as you’re going through the seven years?
Matt London:
As you start off as a first year student, all you know is that your brother was expelled from Hogwarts. You don’t know why. And then shortly after his expulsion, he disappears.

There are rumors and articles that appear in the Daily Prophet referring to these things called the cursed vaults – these strange mysterious rooms that appear and disappear on the Hogwarts grounds. As the player character, you set out to pick up what potentially is your brother’s journey to find these vaults and then seek out to find answers not just to what’s going on at Hogwarts but what happened to him as well. So it’s both a big story encompassing all of Hogwarts, but also a very personal story for the player character.

SnitchSeeker: Hogwarts obviously is the epicenter of the wizarding world, but how much of the outside is incorporated. Will we see Hogsmeade Villlage? Will we hear things from London?
Matt London:
I’m not sure how much outside of Hogwarts we can disclose right now, but again, we really want to capture the full Hogwarts student experience and everything that that entails. I suspect that over the course of this game’s life, we’re going to see many, many corners of the wizarding world.

SnitchSeeker: Personally what’s been your favorite part to play?
Matt London:
My favorite thing in the game is a new character that we’ve created for the game who I can’t talk about too much right now, but is truly an amazing, amazing character – somebody that I think the fans are really going to latch onto, and is going to play a major part in the story. On a smaller scale, for me, I really love the fact that we’re going to get to see Snape brewing potions right in front of you – that’s something that I always wanted to see. He’s such a powerful potion maker. You get that insight when you’re reading the Half-Blood Prince copy of his Potions textbook. I really wanted to see some of that expertise demonstrated in the game. So we’re actually going to get to witness that with our own eyes.

SnitchSeeker: Is this going to be more real-time in terms of like the potion takes an hour and a half so you’re going to have to watch and wait that long? Or are you going to expedite time?
Matt London:
As a role playing simulation game, classes can take a long time, but you’re not obligated to sit there and hover over the phone as you’re playing. You can pick up your device, play through a little bit of the story, put it down, come back, keep playing. To me if feels a lot like a serial or a web-series, where each day you can check in and get a little bit more of the Hogwarts story. To me, that’s the thing I wanted. I wanted something that I’d be able to experience and play through for a long, long time. That’s one of the benefits of this style of game.

SnitchSeeker: Are you going to be able to play against other people at any point?
Matt London:
We are looking into multiplayer compatibility. In the game, you do get to compete for your House to win the House cup, earning and losing House points along the way through the game. In terms of actual multiplayer functionality, stay tuned. We’ve got a lot of new features and cool things planned for this game as we lead up to and after its worldwide launch.

SnitchSeeker: So we get to play Quidditch?
Matt London:
You’ve got to stay tuned. Like I said, remember, we really want to capture the entirety of the Hogwarts experience. So a lot of these things – you’re going to have to wait and see, but it’s going to be worth the wait.

SnitchSeeker: And the ETA is spring?
Matt London:
Spring 2018. We’re really excited to get it into people’s hands. I know that there are a lot of fans like me out there who have been dying to play this game for a super long time. We’re trying to get it to people as quickly as we possibly can, but it’s so important that we get it right. So we’re going to take our time and make sure that it’s absolutely perfect. It’s that dream come true for every player and every fan.
Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery is free to play and is available now on mobile devices via the App Store and Google Play. For more details on Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, and to connect with other Harry Potter fans, visit www.facebook.com/HPHogwartsMystery/, www.twitter.com/HogwartsMystery, and for more information visit Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery.
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Old 04-27-2018, 06:33 AM   #2 (permalink)


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im actually thrilled that this looks to be happening in the era between Harry's birth and his start at Hogwarts. maybe we should be playing some '80s music to get into the right mindset

btw, do we have a thread/ forum where we can talk about the game, post screenshots, share tips etc? specially if the developers have plans of turning this into an MMORPG it would be fantastic if SS members has an HQ to talk about the game.

i'd happily start it, but idk where to open it?
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Old 04-27-2018, 01:02 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Must download this game! *plans on never getting any RL stuff done*

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Originally Posted by Steelsheen View Post
btw, do we have a thread/ forum where we can talk about the game, post screenshots, share tips etc? specially if the developers have plans of turning this into an MMORPG it would be fantastic if SS members has an HQ to talk about the game.

i'd happily start it, but idk where to open it?
Possibly a thread in the General HP forum? That place could always use some love.
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Old 04-28-2018, 06:04 AM   #4 (permalink)


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Originally Posted by Zoe View Post
Must download this game! *plans on never getting any RL stuff done*



Possibly a thread in the General HP forum? That place could always use some love.
if you can resist the microstransactions, theres quite a bit of waiting time in between tasks as you earn your energy back up, so RL can still happen.... yeah thats what i tell myself when im frustrated that my energy tank is running on empty xD

and thank you! i've just submitted a thread for approval
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