There has been some change in the language used when talking about Wizards Unite. Some of it comes from Niantic, some from players. But what seems like a small difference could have a huge impact in how we get the game. So let’s delve into this and try to figure out what is happening.
Sometimes, game creators need to test their game out in the world in order to make the necessary tweaks, fix any remaining bugs and test their servers. Especially when they are anticipating the game will be extremely popular. As is the case with Wizards Unite.
So ever since New Zealand got to try the game on April 17th, Niantic has referred to this as Beta access. A temporary (and not final) version of the game.
So a Beta release would be a controlled way for Niantic to let certain countries, in certain order, try a version of this game. A great way to make sure Wizards Unite is ready before the wide release.
Early Access, on the other hand, means a country is trying the real version of the game (of course, updates will come when needed, as seen recently). But this is very different from Beta Access. This is not the company trying out an early version of the game. This is a soft release, in which the game goes out in a controlled manner to one or more countries at a time. It’s a whole different game.
So what is happening?
But here comes the issue. Niantic (and the official Wizards Unite site) call the New Zealand and Australian version a Beta test.
But the Play Store tells us there’s an Early Access program.
So which is it? Many are starting to call the New Zealand and Australia version a soft release. And if they are right, this has a huge impact going forward. For one, we aren’t going to have a Wizards Unite release. Because the game is already out. Just not in our countries. We will be having soft releases in one country after another until one day we’ll wake up and it will be on our phones. No warning.
And to be honest, this is a little upsetting. We were all happy to let Niantic try out the Beta. We were all giddy to have a first look at what the game looks like. But we are Harry Potter Fans, we love our events. We all want a wide release where we can all enjoy the game as a community. A worldwide community, which is what we are. And we might not get to do that any more.
What do you think?
Do you think we’re still in a Beta period? Do you think Niantic went the sneaky road and started a soft release without saying a word? Are you still hoping for a worldwide release to celebrate with every other Potterhead?
Let us know in the comments or join our Community Forum and our Discord Channel for a chat.