The new location-based augmented reality game is another jewel in J.K. Rowling’s $650 million crown.
Gotta cast ‘em all.
The maker of Pokemon Go is releasing a Harry Potter-themed augmented reality game next year that will transfigure your streets and parks into J.K. Rowling’s wizarding world using your smartphone’s GPS.
Niantic Labs announced that Harry Potter: Wizards Unite will let players, “learn spells, explore their real world neighborhoods and cities to discover and fight legendary beasts, and team up with others to take down powerful enemies.”
The developer had a monster hit on its hands with Pokemon Go last year, which tapped AR technology to let players hunt and collect hundreds of Pokemon characters. It was downloaded 130 million times and raked in $206.5 million during the first month of its record-breaking debut. And at its peak, Go boasted 45 million daily players around the world, and made more than $1.2 billion in in-game sales.
Harry Potter fits into that format perfectly. The wizarding world is hidden in plain sight from non-magical Muggles, after all.
And Wizards Unite is just one of several new games based “Harry Potter” characters that will be released under the new label, Portkey Games, riffing off of Rowling’s imaginary portkeys that transport wizards around the world.
This is the latest piece in Rowling’s charmed franchise, which has made her the highest-paid author in the world after netting $95 million last year — largely thanks to the script for “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child” selling more than 2 million copies in North America, and the movie “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” grossing $814 million at the global box office.
Her enchanting franchise has conjured her net worth to be an estimated $650 million, actually, thanks to her seven “Harry Potter” novels selling close to half a billion books, and the eight films making $7.7 billion. Her Gringotts vault-sized fortune will only grow now that “Cursed Child” is coming to Broadway, where it’s projected to make upwards of $1.85 million a week.
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