Harry Potter: Wizards Unite first launched on June 20th outside of Australia and New Zealand. After one full month of playing, there have been numerous patches, new data packages, and a few updates. There have also been 4 events (1 SOS, 1 Community Day, and 2 Brilliant events) with 1 more event coming in a few days (1 more Brilliant event).
A lot of Quality of Life (QoL) changes have been made to make the game feel smoother and more satisfying. The most notable ones were about energy: (1) The worst Inn items started giving 3 energy instead of 1 energy, and (2) Player’s current and max energy got displayed in the overworld on the top-left of the screen. These changes are necessary to encourage play and reduce frustration. There is still much to improve on and this article aims to touch upon those.
Editor’s note: I don’t necessarily agree with all of these suggestions, but Wizards Unite Hub is a fan website designed to share multiple perspectives from the gaming community.
Quality of Life Changes Needed
There is much that the HPWU team could do to improve Wizards Unite. Some of these QoL suggestions would be small tweaks with a big benefit.
Spell Energy should not be so difficult to obtain. Wizards Unite is not a simple, mobile, pay-to-win game that limits you to 5 plays then you have to wait 5 minutes to play once more. Wizard Unite merges that concept with the style of Pokémon GO, so we are stuck in the middle where Spell Energy is annoying and prohibitive yet tolerable at times. Spell Energy should replenish, be it from a potion or the passage of time, and it should be plentiful from all three structures (Inns, Greenhouses, and Fortresses).
- Inns: Weasley Inns (green roof) are the best, but they still need to give better Spell Energy. On average, it gives double (~6.5) what the worst Inn gives (3), even though Weasley Inns are usually hard to find compared to the worst Inns (pink and brown). Even an average of 10 would still make it unequal compared to pink Inns; it’s easy to find a ratio of 3+ pink Inns to 1 green Inn since cities mainly have pink and brown Inns, maybe a few blue Inns.
- Fortresses: Fortress battles require too much Spell Energy, especially in the higher levels. Either you shouldn’t need use Spell Energy at all, or Fortresses should reward Spell Energy. The challenge should not be to either (a) Find a fortress with lots of Inns in range, or (b) Battle a couple of times, then walk around to refill Spell Energy.
- Events: All events have more Traces, therefore all events need to make Inns give more energy. More Traces = more Spell Energy.
- Failed Traces: Failed traces, especially single taps (accidental when tapping away pop-ups) shouldn’t take up Spell Energy.
Fortresses are done well. I’m looking forward to seeing their next next feature since battles are only 1v1. There has to be a time when players can 5v1 a boss.
- Damage Numbers: I don’t think many adults have had to do quick 2-3 digit subtraction in decades. Damage done/taken should be shown.
- Foe Stamina Bar: A Foe’s Stamina bar is always red. It should be the same color as the players and it would help if it changed colors to red when the Foe was under 50% since many profession skills depend on that.
- Location of Player Icons: Player icons in the arena should be at the bottom. At the top, the icons are the farthest away from the strategic spells. It is very annoying to Revive a teammate or transfer Focus when it’s the farthest possible spot.
- Player Icons: Player icons are very generic and difficult to recognize quickly. The name is the main way to tell them apart. Please let us add our own icons or pick from a set of icons. Or at least have profession-specific icons and not just the wizard head silhouette.
- Organized Foe Icons: Foe icons should appear in a grid, not just randomly placed. It’s messy and confusing. Coordinating with teammates is a pain when Foes just randomly spawn without any alignment. “I’ll take the Pixie” doesn’t work.
- Overlapping Icons: Foe icons and player icons should NOT overlap. I have had times when they overlapped by 75% and I couldn’t tell which Foe was under the player icon.
- Runestones: There needs to be more ways to get Runestones and high-level Runestones. Maybe with the next battle feature, it will add Runestone drops.
- Spell Books: Why does the challenge XP rank cap not stop until rank 150? The Exploration family XP rank cap stops at rank 11, capping it at 100 XP needed. Challenge XP caps at rank 150 at 3,770 XP needed. QUITE the difference. It’s not even close.
- [Added] Energy warnings before committing to a battle. This has been a great QoL addition.
Traces make up most of the game play, therefore they need to be rewarding and fun.
- Pokémon GO Nearby List: This is sorely missed. Why isn’t there a feature that shows high-level threats or clusters of threats nearby? It’s like we are called to clean up these threats WITHOUT any tools to find them. We aimless walk around and find places that normally have a high number of Traces.
- Unknown Traces: We only see the category of Trace and if the threat is High/Severe/Emergency. We have to “shiny-check” each common (Low and Medium) Trace to just see what it is. Foundables like the Boggart Cabinet and Monster Book are HIGHLY desired, much more than any beam-of-light Trace, and are camouflaged in with the rest. This becomes tedious and extremely annoying. One suggestion on Reddit is to gray out what is already at max fragments.
- Indicator of Seen Foundables: When checking a Foundable, its position on the Map often shifts after fleeing. With multiple Foundables from the same family on the map, it’s hard to know if you’ve already encountered it or not. An indicator if you already encountered the Foundable would be helpful.
- Remove the Flee confirmation: The icon is at the top-left and difficult to unintentionally press. An additional pop-up is excessive.
- Animation Time: ALL Traces need a lower animation time, like a standard 3 seconds. Some were changed a few weeks ago, but some were not. Also, it seems like some were reverted back to their long animation time.
- There is a long animation time when you cast a spell, then a long animation time when you dispel the Trace. It is awesome to see the animations, but after the 100th time, it’s excessive.
- [Changed] Vampire and Erkling animation times. Thank you!
- Flee rate. Flee rate. Flee rate. Constant complaints on Reddit about the flee rate, when the Foundable gets whisked away by the magic. And this is regardless of one’s player level. Foundables should not have a high flee rate. It makes no sense. Fleeing is the worst. Players even complain that Dawdle Droughts (-50% flee rate) don’t work, because a Trace flees. That just shows that something has such a high flee rate that reducing it by 50% still gives it a high chance to flee.
- Win rate/Catch rate of Low & Medium traces. Even at player level 30, Low Traces often require 2-3 energy to dispel, and sometimes they still flee. Medium Traces easily take 2-4 energy. If the bar is somewhat accurate (very close to the top), it should be an 80%+ win rate, but that is not what is experienced.
- Trace Bar Colors: There are three shades of green. It makes no logical sense, even if it makes sense as a general warning bar with a spectrum of colors. For the win rate, green should mean a 75%+ chance, but it CLEARLY does not. Please fix the bar’s colors; it’s deceiving.
- Masterful Tracing: The second most posted complaint on Reddit is that Masterful traces do not increase the chance to ‘win’ as much as it should. For example, if Good is 5%, Great is 10%, and Masterful is 15%, that’s just not good enough. Masterful should be much higher than it already is.
- Flags: Areas with specific categories should always have Traces and lots of them. Most often, flagged areas have no traces or only a few while they should have the most out of anywhere. These “nests” clearly do not dictate Traces.
- XP from Failed Traces: It’s tragic having a Foundable flee, so a little XP would be nice (like in Pokémon GO)
- [Added] Lower animation times
Greenhouses, Seeds, and Potions
These three features lack and make players suffer.
- Exstimulo Potions: Why do Exstimulo potions keep getting nerfed and buffed? 6%/15%/42% is too low for battles. 50%/125%/225% is too high. 6% and 15% are too low for win rate.
- Brew Times:
- Why do Exstimulo Potions and Healing Potions take 2 hours? Their original time of 1 hour was good. Exstimulo Potions are necessary with low win rates and high flee rates, but waiting 2 hours is not sustainable.
- Dawdle Drought’s brew time of 6 hours is too long. Even 3 hours is excessive. Also, it should not need a rare Ingredient (Hermit Crab Shell).
- Invigoration Potion’s brew time is 3 hours. For 1 Focus. Delete this Potion.
- Strong Invigoration Potion’s brew time is 6 hours. For 6 Focus. Why 6 hours!?
- Healing Potions: Why do Healing Potions only heal up to 35% stamina? Players only use them in higher level chambers, and when they do, they have to constantly chug them. There needs to be a Greater Healing Potion, or these need to be buffed.
- Too Many Ingredients for Potions: Why do Potions need 4 different types of Ingredients? Maybe for the lore, but in practice, it’s excessive. Every single extra Potion you add from here on out will be a huge burden on Potion and Ingredient storage. And there are MANY more Potions that will be released.
- Ingredient Overlap: Maybe for the lore, Potions do not have Ingredients overlap, but for this game, it is very difficult managing an Ingredient inventory and keeping enough for most, if not all of the Potions.
- Seeds: Why aren’t MOST Ingredients in Seed form? (Not the rare ones, of course)
- Seed Icon: It is VERY hard to tell some Seeds apart. They are small and indistinguishable.
- Water: Why is Water an item? It should not exist NOR take up Seed space.
- Frog Brains and Bubotuber Pus are phallic and inappropriate.
- Why are Abraxan Hair and Granian Hair almost identical?
- Why are Re’em Blood and Newt Spleen the same color and size?
- Why do Wormwood and Dittany look alike?
- Greenhouse Growing Times: These are ridiculous. 1 hour is fine, but that’s the LOWEST. Eight Seeds need 7 hours to grow. Leaping Toadstools at 1 day seems to be fine for players, but some complain that other silly players just keep planting them and occupying the Greenhouses indefinitely. The times need to change to 15-60 minutes. No one plays at 12pm and then comes back from 7-8pm. It’s ridiculous. How is this even still around? Why do the Ingredients not just get sent to you if you plant or donate Spell Energy?
Professions are a huge boost to AR geo-location games. It adds an RPG to the mix. Professions have been done well, but there are a few tweaks that would help them.
- Why is Become the Beast counter-intuitive to its function as a profession? It aims to heal, revive, and buff, but those reduce its Power. If this is a solo-only skill, then I guess it makes sense, but it feels awkward.
- Proficiency Power: Compared to Professors, Magizoologists have to spend more than double the Spell Books and Scrolls to get Proficiency Power. This makes no sense and it really hinders Magizoologists, who are the essential members in a team, because they are the only ones that can heal, revive, and buff the team vs. Elite Foes.
- Magizoologists only get 11% more Defense than Aurors, who also have a -50% reduction in Foe Power.
- Precision: Aurors only get 12% more Precision compared to Professors. It has boosts to the first hit and vs. Death Eaters, but those are very situational. Aurors do not get enough Damage boosts whereas Professors have situational Power boosts and the Deterioration Hex.
- Critical Power: Aurors only get 9% more Critical Power than Professors. Similar to Precision, this does not make sense.
- No issues now that Deterioration Hex has been nerfed. It was too strong. Proficiency Power is too easy for them to get, but that’s more a problem for Magizoologists and Aurors. Restricted Section Books seemed prohibitive, but with the Brilliant Events coming every 2 weeks, the pace suits them well.
- Why don’t all professions have a minimum of 5 Initial Focus and 15 Maximum Focus? This would encourage group Fortress play. Starting with 4 Initial Focus and 10 Maximum Focus might fit with the profession, but it doesn’t help a group.
- Why do the Bat-Bogey Hex and Mending Charm exist? They take up precious Restricted Section Books and only minimally help. It’s more for casting when bored.
Events encourage players not only to play, but also to play together. The Brilliant Events have done well to encourage playing by adding quests and Brilliant-Event-only rewards (Restricted Books), but the other two events lack both of those.
In Pokémon GO, events have more spawns, rewards like more XP/stardust/walking reduction/hatching speed/candy, and some unique reward like a specific shiny, event eggs, quests, and event-specific spawns. Brilliant Events are near-perfect events that match and exceed Pokémon GO) events. Unfortunately, Community Day and SOS Flare-Up fell way short of the bar.
- As mentioned in the Spell Energy section, more Traces mean more Spell Energy needed.
- Longer Dark Detector duration was good. 3-hours would be ideal especially since Dark Detectors get expensive when using 3 per Inn. Dark Detectors are one of the most expensive items in the shop.
- Extra family XP should also go with more Traces of a specific family/category.
- Boxes/Packages in Diagon Alley that match the event. If the event extends Dark Detectors, put them in there. If the event spawns rare Traces, put in Strong and Potent Exstimulos. If the event reduces Portkey distance, put in Silver Keys.
- Theme: The 1st Community Day had more Hogwarts School traces, but without a story or reason as to why. If it has a theme, there needs to be a quick blurb about why we see more of those Traces and some sort of related reward.
- A reason: In Pokémon GO, if you miss Community Day, you miss an easy chance of getting the shiny version plus tons of specific spawns (which helps for evolving and getting multiples). In Wizards Unite, if you missed the 1st Community Day, you missed Hogwarts School family XP (no bonuses though) and maybe a Boggart Cabinet or Professor McGonagall (people reported getting some and others reported barely getting any).
- If a player missed Community Day, they wouldn’t really lose anything notable. If a player missed a Brilliant Event, they would cry over the lost Restricted Section Books, tons of Scrolls, and an empty sticker page.
- Community Day wasn’t memorable, and it really didn’t give a reason for the Community to get together. The Dark Detectors and Baruffio’s XP bonuses were nice, but without a box, it seemed more like a cash grab than a huge reward for playing.
- The Baruffio’s 3x XP (100% more than normal) was grossly overshadowed by the amount of XP from categorizing the Potter’s Calamity event spawns as Emergency Traces. Of course, this was a mistake, however it was over-corrected.
- Event spawns should give more XP and more family XP than their regular threat counterparts. I’m not sure, but I thought Brilliant Buckbeak and Brilliant Unicorn did give more XP. The nerfed Brilliant Hedwig (75 XP) and Brilliant Quidditch Captain Harry Potter (150 XP) gave the same amounts as a regular Medium and High Trace along with the same family XP. So, my two critiques of the near-perfect Brilliant events are to add bonus Spell Energy to Inns and increase rewards (XP and family XP). Otherwise, what’s the use in even trying if it’s the same as normal?
Other Wizards Unite Suggestions
- A confirmation window when a player runs out of Spell Energy if they accidentally click to buy more and don’t want to.
- Red dots: They need to go away. Something so simple is making a ton of players really mad. If a page needs to prestige, then a pop-up should immediately come up asking to prestige. For Exploration Foundables, all players should prestige immediately.
- Prestiging: Finishing a page feels gratifying. Prestiging a page feels like a slap in the face. Also, it makes no sense that getting Gold on a page rewards the player with diminished family XP for the Traces from that point on. So, the player did well to finish and now they get minimal family XP forever?
- Fragment Challenge XP: This works opposite to Exploration family XP. Players only get challenge XP if a fragment is maxed. In Explorations, players get more family XP if it is not maxed and minimal if it is maxed.
- Curious why Exploration level up XP caps at rank 11 and Challenge level up XP caps at rank 150. One is at the beginning and one is extremely far into it. Also, from rank 9 and on, Scrolls are doubled yet Spell Books remain at 2. The complaints for Spell Books started a week or two ago, and they will keep growing and growing, especially since Scrolls are rolling in with Brilliant Events. You know you have a problem when players value 3 Spell Books over 15 Scrolls in the login rewards.
- Package deals in the Diagon Alley don’t exist and are especially needed during events.
- Package deals that cost Gold, not cash. Players who already bought bundles of Gold have no thrifty way to buy things. Not everyone is going to buy 15 Baruffio’s for 1,200 Gold or 15 Dark Detectors for 1,400 Gold, both absurd amounts of Gold for what you get. $12 (US dollars) for 15 Baruffio’s and $14 for Dark Detectors for 30 minutes of 5 triple Inns is absurd, and no one in their right mind would buy them.
- Friends List: It is unnecessary in the overworld and would be better in the Briefcase.
- Overworld Avatar: More customization. Our avatar is a single-colored generic wizard.
- Dark Detectors need timers. In Pokémon GO, lures do not have timers (not sure why not), but there is only one per Pokéstop. For Wizards Unite, players do not know when a Dark Detector was placed and it’s hard to know if they should add to it, because it might expire soon.
- [Added] Daily tasks, Special tasks, Achievements, and SOS tasks are implemented and awesome except for the 10 Formidable Pixies, Doxies, and Werewolves quest.
Major Changes and New Features
- New features should be hinted at and featured just like this game was in the past 6 months. How much was spent on making those amazing videos of a niffler, cereberus, and more? Players should get excited about a new feature with teasers.
- Now that the game has been out for a month, core players are starting to get restless. The game already lost players who just wanted to try it out and didn’t like it. The game lost more players who tried it and felt like it was a Pokémon GO clone.
- We know there are more features coming, but where are they? If things like Spell Energy and anything mentioned above aren’t going to be fixed/implemented, then features need to drive this game. Right now, players are starting to get bored of Traces and unrewarding sticker pages.
- Where is the Floo network? Team Ron, Harry, and Hermione?
- [Challenge Registry section] What are Fenrir, Wormtail, Umbridge, Malfoy, and Aragog doing there? Since those sections are there, can it be added soon as a new feature?
- Wizard Unite’s Fan Festival: If dragons are just Oddities, then it will not be a new feature, just more content. I hope this is not just another Oddity page or add on to anther page (even worse). Dragons are HUGE attractions. Why would it JUST be an oddity? People are wondering if it was worth spending hundreds to thousands of dollars to visit Indianapolis in a month, but if they just experience dragon Oddities first, then that is not worth it. Also, attendees at Comic Con were told that dragons are regionals? No words can express how sad that will be. Regionals are elitist and just showing players something they will never get, but always want.
Overall, I’m enjoying Wizards Unite, but I think the developers could implement a lot of changes to improve the game.