In order to make Hogwarts Legacy work on the Nintendo Switch, it had to make some significant compromises on its open-world aspects. Hogwarts Legacy is currently the biggest game of 2023, which might surprise you considering it came out earlier in the year and oddly faced stiff competition, to the point of being completely overlooked at The Game Awards. Nevertheless, it’s currently the number one best-selling game of 2023. However, there’s still time for this to change since Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 was just released and traditionally dominates as the best-selling game every year (except when Rockstar releases a new title). Yet, Hogwarts Legacy found a way to stay in the spotlight this holiday season with its new Nintendo Switch version.
The game was initially slated for a spring release but faced several delays. Now it’s finally here, and fans are understandably eager to see how well it performs. Some early leaks looked promising, and for the most part, the game holds up! However, there’s a major flaw: the open world isn’t as open on the Nintendo Switch. Hogwarts Legacy is a massive game that allows free-roaming outside of the school with vast areas to explore. Loading screens are almost non-existent on PC and consoles, but on the Nintendo Switch, there are tons of loading screens. There’s a loading screen when crossing the bridge to Hogsmeade. If it were just for entering various shops, it might have been overlooked, but it gets worse. Switch Up notes these loading times range between 30 to 50 seconds, meaning you’ll spend several minutes on loading screens while traversing Hogsmeade.
You probably won’t want to aimlessly browse through shops; you might want to plan your visits to avoid constant loading screens. Perhaps there’s a chance for patching and improvement later on, but it’s a frustrating flaw at the moment. Nonetheless, it seems the Nintendo Switch version serves as a competent port for Harry Potter fans who own only a Nintendo Switch. There are graphical compromises, but it still looks good and runs at around 30 FPS. Considering there are worse Nintendo Switch ports out there and the fact that this is a rather hefty, demanding game, it’s surprising it runs locally on a Nintendo console.