If you need to know whether you are really a Hufflepuff or a Gryffindor, then it’s time to get yourself an augmented reality sorting hat.
The sorting hat game went live for Harry Potter fans this week within Wizarding World, a new mobile app and website launched by Harry Potters’ publishing house and the studio behind its film franchise, Warner Brothers Entertainment.
Warning: Wizarding World does make users download around 222 MB of “magic” before it can begin every time they want to play the game. This could be a dealbreaker for those who are already out of storage space or short on time and mobile bandwidth.
From then on, it’s time for augmented sorting hat selfie madness as you try to angle the phone to get the hat to stay on your head (it has a tendency to jump off if you move the phone).
Illustrated multiple choice questions, asking, for example, which magic box you would rather open, suss you out before your experience ends in a whirlwind of face filters and a house assignment based on the personality traits you share with the characters in the series.
The house assignment is essentially an AR badge with your house’s name framing your face, ready for another round of selfies.
All this AR sparkle is part of a rebrand of an existing version of the sorting hat game that debuted on J.K. Rowling’s Pottermore website, which Wizarding World is intended to replace.
Bigwigs behind the Harry Potter franchise appear to be rubbing their hands at the prospect of turning the fansite into a larger digital business and will soon offer a yearly paid subscription.
Wizarding World’s launch timing seems to be riding on the wave of publicity from the launch earlier this summer of the augmented reality game Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, for which Warner Brothers Interactive Entertainment partnered with Pokémon GO’s maker Niantic.
Let’s wait and see whether future subscribers back an augmented reality launch hat trick that turns the film franchise into a truly magical platform of AR content that grows with the cinematic and book versions.