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Harry Potter Wizards Unite Mobile Game Casts a Spell to Become 2019’s Pokémon Go

Muggles rejoice: Harry Potter Wizards Unite is available for download on Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android. The new augmented reality (AR) game by Niantic is largely Harry Potter Pokémon Go. Players are required to move through the real world in order to play the game. Judging by the game’s trailer, smartphone owners will be able to cast spells, collect items, and battle dementors. If Pokémon Go’s profits are anything to go off of, Harry Potter Wizards Unite could rake in some serious galleons for the game’s creators as well.

Pokémon Go was a hit from the start. When the game launched in July 2016, it immediately broke numerous “first month” records. According to Guinness, Pokémon Go saw the most-downloads in a game’s first month, most international charts topped simultaneously (both revenue charts and number of downloads), and the app quickest to earn $100 million. (It took the game 20 days).

Fast-forward to today and the app is still earning. According to a SensorTower report, Pokémon Go had accrued nearly $2.45 billion in total revenue as of March 2019.

Could Harry Potter Wizards Unite see the same profits? Even Hogwarts best Divination professors would say the answer is unclear. On the one hand, Pokémon is the most profitable media franchise ever—bigger than Harry Potter and even Star Wars and Marvel.

On the other hand, the wizarding series is no slouch. Harry Potter is still a $25 billion franchise and can be expected to draw in some players who felt no affinity to the Pokémon characters. Additionally, many fans critiqued Pokémon Go for taking too long to add features like trading Pokémon and battling with other players. Depending on what features Niantic includes (or omits) in Harry Potter Wizards Unite, players of the new game may stick around longer.

Regardless of what the game does include, Harry Potter Wizards Unite is expected to make a big splash. Gameplay centers around not just your physical location, but also augmented reality. According to the game’s website, you’re tasked with moving throughout the real world and following “traces of magic” to locate items. Returning these items will earn you rewards.

Harry Potter-Wizards Unit-Hagrid
Courtesy of Warner Bros

Wizards Unite players can access the game’s augmented reality features by encountering portkeys, allowing them to transport to new places. Popular characters from the movies like Ron Weasley can also appear in-game. The game also contains battles against werewolves and death eaters (the series’ villains) when a player visits one of the game’s fortresses. Though whether or not you can face off against real life friends in a wizard duel remains to be seen.

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