- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 2, 2021

The new Harry Potter video game “Hogwarts Legacy” will reportedly include trans-friendly character options following backlash against the franchise creator J.K. Rowling and her comments about trans people.

Bloomberg reported Tuesday that “Hogwarts Legacy,” which will release next year by publisher Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment Inc. and developer Avalanche Software, will allow players to customize their character’s voice, body type and gender placement for the school dormitories.

Players will be able to choose between being a “witch” or “wizard,” which will determine the dorm they are assigned at Hogwarts and they can choose between a masculine or feminine voice no matter what their body looks like, Bloomberg reported.

The news comes after Ms. Rowling was slammed as transphobic by the LGBTQ community and Hollywood for comments declaring “sex is real” and that “current trans activism” seeks to “erode ‘woman’ as a political and biological class.” The famed novelist was denounced last year by several stars from her “Harry Potter” empire and the comments even worried some people working on the game, Bloomberg reported.

In September, Warner Bros. assured fans that Ms. Rowling would not be involved in the game’s development. 

J.K. Rowling is not directly involved in the creation of the game, however, her extraordinary body of writing is the foundation of all projects in the Wizarding World,” the company said, The Verge reported. “This is not a new story from J.K. Rowling.” 

Bloomberg said “there was resistance from management at first” but that members of the “Hogwarts Legacy” development team pushed for the character customization to make the game as inclusive as possible.

A Warner Bros. spokesperson declined to comment for Bloomberg’s report.

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