Combat Tips & Basics – Hogwarts Legacy

Welcome, young wizards and witches, to EIP’s Combat Basics for Hogwarts Legacy! In this guide, you’ll find all the information you need to best make use of the spells within your grimoires. We’ll take a look at all the essential elements of combat, including targeting, blocking, combos. We’ll also explain how to break through shields, and go over the mysterious Ancient Magic that your character can master.

While there are plenty of exciting spells to learn, you’ll want to master the basics first: targeting, attacking and blocking.

  • Manually Target Press playstation r3 (push in on the right stick) to manually target an enemy
    • Move the stick to change targets

By default, you’ll attack the enemy that’s the closest to you and to the center of your screen. However, there will often be times that you want to target a specific foe. By default, pushing in on the right stick will allow you to manually target enemies; you can then use the right stick to swap between targets. The currently targeted enemy will have their name, level, and health displayed at the top of the screen.

enemy targeting health meter hogwarts legacy
Info on the currently targeted enemy

  • Basic Attack Tap playstation r2 button

Your basic attack is a combat “spell” that is always available — it has no cooldown, and no requirements to cast (other than there being an enemy to cast it at). By tapping the right trigger, you’ll fling a damaging attack at your target.

basic attacks hogwarts legacy gif
A series of basic attacks (on a target that’s been hit with Leviosa)

  • Block/Parry Press playstation triangle button to cast Protego
    • Hold playstation triangle button when blocking a spell to cast a Stupefy counter on the attacking enemy

The block and parry button are the same — by holding the block button while receiving an attack, you’ll parry, stunning the attacking enemy. You’ll know when it’s time to cast Protego, as an orange halo will appear around your head right before you’re attacked.

protego hogwarts legacy gif
Blocking and parrying an attack with Protego

Note that some attacks cannot be blocked with Protego — you’ll have to dodge roll to avoid these attacks. These unblockable attacks are indicated by a red halo with spikes.

unblockable attack hogwarts legacy gif
An unblockable attack

  • Spell Diamond Hold playstation r2 button
    • While holding playstation r2 button , you can press face buttons to cast the spell assigned to that button.

Conveniently located on the same button as your Basic Attack, the Spell Diamond is how you’ll cast the spells you equip. When holding playstation r2 button, you’ll see up to 4 spells, each assigned to one of the face buttons. Pressing one of those buttons while continuing to hold playstation r2 button will cast the spell assigned to that button. Casting a spell will put it on cooldown — spells on cooldown will become black, and they’ll “fill up” with color to indicate how close to being off cooldown they are.

You can unlock up to four Spell Diamonds over the course of the game, allowing you to equip a total of 16 spells (4 in each). To access your spell diamonds, press a direction on the D-pad while holding playstation r2 button. In the image below, you can see that there are two spell diamonds available.

spell diamond hogwarts legacy
The Spell Diamond — notice that the top spell diamond is selected, and the spells on X and Square are on cooldown

spell damage types for breaking shields hogwarts legacy

Enemy shields will always be color coded, and each color indicates that a certain class of spell is required to break that shield:

  • Gold – Control Spells
  • Red – Damage Spells
  • Violet – Force Spells

Spells are color coded in your Spell Diamond, so it’s easy to tell at a glance which spell(s) you have equipped can break an enemy’s shield. To break a shield, simply target a shielded enemy, then cast a spell with a matching color.

In addition to your basic attack and the spells you learn and equip, your character also gains access to special “Ancient Magic” spells early on during the course of the game.

  • Ancient Magic Spell Press playstation r1 button + playstation l1 button at the same time when the prompt appears above an enemy.

Unlike the Ancient Magic Throw, this spell requires that you have a full bar in your Ancient Magic meter. Once you do, a prompt will appear above targeted enemies, indicating you can press both bumpers together to cast this spell. Its effect varies depending on the enemy targeted, but it appears to always eliminate the target (or turn it into a chicken).

ancient magic spell gif hogwarts legacy

  • Ancient Magic Throw Press playstation r1 button when the prompt shows up on an object to throw the object at your current target.

This spell doesn’t seem to cost any of your Ancient Magic Meter — once you have it unlocked, you’ll see prompts appear above environmental objects — pressing the button will throw the object indicated at your current target.

ancient magic throw gif hogwarts legacy

hogwarts legacy combo meter

Attacking enemies fills the combo meter. Every time you land a hit, the combo meter will increase by 1, and your Ancient Magic meter will fill. Once your combo meter reaches 10+, enemies will also start dropping Ancient Magic Powerups — little blue blobs on the ground that you can absorb by walking near them — which will fill your meter even faster. Being damaged will reset the combo meter.

Once you’ve learned how to cast the Disillusionment charm, you’ll be able to sneak up to or past enemies. While casting the charm will make you stealthier, we suspect some enemies will be better at detecting stealthy players than others. While in stealth, if you get behind an enemy while remaining undetected, you’ll be able to cast Petrificus Totalus, which will deal massive damage and fell most enemies weaker than minibosses instantly.

  • Use Tool – Press playstation l1 button to use the currently equipped tool.

Thanks to the Potions and Herbology classes, you’ll be able to bring consumables with you into combat. By holding playstation l1 button, you can bring up the Tools Wheel. From here, use the right stick to select a tool, then release playstation l1 button to equip it. The game will pause while the Tool Wheel is open, so you can take your time deciding what you need to equip.

tool wheel hogwarts legacy
The tool wheel
  • Don’t forget to hold down Protego after successfully blocking an attack – it will cast Stupefy at whoever you are aiming at!
  • You can keep enemies suspended in mid-air for a long time by successfully combining Accio, Levioso, and Basic Casts, as well as more advanced spells you get later.
  • You can dodge-roll both yellow and red halo attacks, but you can only use Protego when the yellow halos appear.
  • Expelliarmus can be useful even if the enemy doesn’t have any weapons – but it is really useful against enemies with giant weapons.
  • Keep an eye out for the blue wisps that appear while you are in combat, they will charge up your Ancient Magic meter!
  • Speaking of Ancient Magic, keep your eyes peeled for the indicators that appear above enemies that show Ancient Magic is available.
    • A well-timed Ancient Magic attack could easily be the difference between victory and defeat!
  • Stupefy and Ancient Magic Throw will break any shield, regardless of color.
  • Stuck against a large group of enemies? Try to levitate or stun some of them so you can focus less on dodging and more on attacking!

You should now be ready to take on Hogwarts Legacy’s combat, so best of luck! We hope this guide was helpful! Thoughts, questions, and suggestions are welcome in the comments below.

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Unabashed FromSoftware fanboy still learning to take his time with games (and everything else, really). The time he doesn't spend on games is spent on music, books, or occasionally going outside.

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