There’s a new wizard school game in town, and it comes guilt-free. Ikenfell is its name, and it’s a turn-based RPG with adorable retro graphics and a story about mischievous kids unlocking the secrets of a magic school. It also has a wonderful soundtrack created by a Steven Universe composer. If you yearn for the days when the idea of learning magic was whimsical and not tied to a questionable public figure, Ikenfell might be for you.
Ikenfell comes from Humble Games and Happy Ray Games. The story seems to follow a group of new students who uncover dark secrets at a school for magic. The tone seems to aim for that delicate balance between wholesome friendships and creepy mystery that defined the Harry Potter series. Only in Ikenfell, conflicts are resolved time-based combat. It calls to mind Paper Mario and the way attacks were performed using timed button pressed.
A new trailer celebrates Ikenfell’s launch today by teasing the story, showing the dynamic look of the combat, and giving the cute visuals a chance to shine. It currently goes for $19.99 on all the platforms you’d expect to find it on, although it’s already available on Game Pass for Xbox owners.
It’s no secret that Harry Potter fans have wanted an RPG where you explore Hogwarts as your own custom character for a long time. They were excited when leaks told of such a in 2018. Now, that game is revealed as Hogwarts Legacy. Footage showed it as a PS5 title where players attend Hogwarts and maybe even get the choice to become a dark wizard. It sounded like everything a Potter fan could want. Then JK Rowling had to go on Twitter.
Rowling has made several public transphobic remarks, and doubled down on these views when challenged. The fallout has seen many progressive fans consider abandoning the Wizarding World franchise altogether so that Rowling doesn’t get their money. The fact that this might affect Hogwarts Legacy’s bottom line caused the publisher to clarify Rowling’s role on the game. She apparently had no role in the creation or they story. Still, she’s bound to get some take from the use of the Harry Potter name. For some, it’s probably better to buy Ikenfell and support an indie dev instead.
Ikenfell is available now on Nintendo Switch, PS4, Xbox One, and PC via Steam and Humble Store.
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