The spell which returns Voldemort to corporeal form in chapter 32 of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Here are the other three best spells in Harry Potter.
The Unbreakable Vow
It’s a magically-binding promise from one wizard/witch to another, witnessed by a third.
If you break the vow you die.
It’s not clear from the fiction exactly why baddies aren’t using this to control people and are instead using the Imperius curse (a sort of mind-control), which can be repelled with training. Perhaps there is a component where the Unbreakable Vow just won’t work if the person making the promise is under duress. Of course, there are many types of duress, so even that doesn’t really explain it.
In Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality, an excellent fan-fiction in which Harry is raised by scientist parents, the Unbreakable Vow permanently siphons off a bit of magical potential, which is a good explanation for why they are not constantly used. (I think its the magical potential of the person to whom something is promised that is sapped.) In fact, HPMOR is a fan-fic that adds and improves on the original – everyone is more competent and magic is used to its fullest extent with minimal plot holes.
The Unbreakable Vow has some similarities with Gaes in D&D.
What makes the spell so good is the potential for high-stakes drama.
The Fidelius Charm
You make something, typically a location, unfindable. Not just hidden, but unfindable. It can only be found by the person you designate as the Secret Keeper.
The Secret Keeper can tell other people the secret, so that they can find it, but those people cannot pass the secret on again. Its a mechanism for limiting the passage of secret information, and was used in the Wizarding Wars to keep The Goodies safe.
The roleplay juice here is centered on who you tell the secret to.
People who trust nobody can’t use it.
People who trust somebody are now beholden to that person.
That person is the weak link in your chain. Did you choose the right person?
It also feels similar to magic relating to the True Names of things. If someone knows your True Name, they have power over you.
Like the Unbreakable Vow, the Fidelius Charm provides some good roleplay possibilities, mostly relating to drama.
I know it’s not an spell but the original list included a potion.
The Remembrall is a large marble-like ball with white smoke inside. If you’ve forgotten something, the smoke turns red.
As a kid I thought that the remembrall was a pointless gift. If I’ve forgotten something, at least tell me what it is!
As an adult I would love one. A magic item that means you never miss a deadline, you never forget to pay a bill – how many times have you rushed to barely complete something in time because you forgot about in entirely?
It’s a magic item of convenience – like a bag of holding.
In a ttrpg it would function as a mechanism to make sure that player knowledge stays aligned with character knowledge. As an excuse for the GM to aid the party without breaking the illusion of the game. It’s excellent not due to drama, but as a tool for the GM – in fact its a tool for the GM which the players probably think is a tool for them.
The DAQ Criteria
I’ve written before about the DAQ Criteria. We ask three questions of an ability (or item or spell etc.):
Is it Distinctive?
Is it Appreciable?
Is it Qualitative?
The Unbreakable Vow
There is nothing else in the Harry Potter world which can do this, however the Imperius Curse comes close
Yes, if a character acted based on an unbreakable vow it would be an appreciable, noticeable moment in a game (or in the fiction)
Fundamentally the spell applies a rather unique quality to the target.
The Fidelius Charm
It is unique, there is no other stated mechanism for the protection of dwellings like this
Yes, escaping to a secret location and knowing that you are safe (unless betrayed) is highly appreciable
It is distinct, nothing else does what it does
This is debatable. We see in the fiction that Neville’s Remembrall reminds him that he’s forgotten something, but he can’t remember what he has forgotten. But if the players can remember what it was that was forgotten, then it would be highly appreciable.
All the best spells in Harry Potter are linked by their qualitative and distinct natures. They are also all appreciable, but I think this is a secondary design concern to the other two. The longer I have thought about the DAQ criteria, the more I’ve thought that it would be very hard to make something which is distinct, qualitative and yet not appreciable. Furthermore, I think that anything which falls into that category is still useful as a game element for setting tone.
Shilling for myself
I recently released Welcome to Camp Merlin, a short (6-12 session) game about a group of kids at a magical summer camp.
When I was designing the magic in Camp Merlin, aimed to make every spell fit the DAQ criteria. Here’s the spell list below:
Shape Shifting – take the form of an animal
True Slime – a perfectly lubricant, completely frictionless
True Glue – a perfect adhesive
Slowing – slows target
Ranged Shove – pushes back target
Power Walking – can walk up walls/on water
Perfect Replica – makes a reflected copy of an item
Truth Food – you must tell the truth while eating it
Sense Mind – sense, but do not read, nearby minds
Liquify – liquifies the target
Misremember – edits a memory
Mirth – forced laughter
These spells, combined with the qualitative tasks that must be completed to learn them, several unique monsters (with sub-tables to vary the encounters) and a dozen static encounters around Camp Merlin, compose 80% of the game. Very content-heavy, with some GM guidance and very light rules.
Once again I’ll be referencing Harry Potter a lot, as well as D&D 5e. Harry Potter remains the best cultural touchstone when discussing learning magic, whilst D&D 5e is the big ttrpg.
When I refer to casting magic, I mean the actual things that the character does to make the magic happen, not the results of the magic.
Magic can serve lots of purposes in a fiction. In Lovecraftian fiction it is dangerous and dark, something to be feared and avoided. In Harry Potter it is largely whimsical and a time-saving tool. In Mistborn (I recently read the first book and really enjoyed it) magic is a mechanical tool, mostly of oppression. You get the idea.
The the casting of the magic should reflect and support its themes within the fiction. Generally, it does.
Casting of Lovecraftian magic is esoteric. Casting is likely to involve strange words and dark rituals. Lovecraftian magic is very tightly themed.
Mistborn’s magic is mechanical – ingest the appropriate metal and then use it as mana for that branch of magic. Appropriate for a tool-like magic.
Harry Potter’s magic falls down here (with one big exception). Most magic involves pointing a wand and saying some pseudo-latin. This is somewhat whimsical but it’s core flaw is that it is boring. I’ve written at length before about the three best spells in Harry Potter and the best spell, Expecto Patronum, bucks this trend.
Expecto Patronum creates a glowing magical creature which brings warmth and happiness, and defeats the dark monsters which stand in for depression. To cast Expecto Patronum, the caster must bring to mind a powerful happy memory. This is great theming and moreover it is interesting, not just from a fictional position but from a ttrpg perspective.
Expecto Patronum is essentially acting like a storygame prompt. If a player were to cast the spell, they would need to explain their character’s happy memory to the rest of the players. The casting mechanism is engaging as it is directly supporting narrative development by the players.
This doesn’t directly support the whimsy of the setting, but the glowing animal companion bit does. And this spell is only relevant when depression-monsters are attacking – the darkness to which the whimsy is juxtaposed anyway.
It’s probably not worthwhile to make every spell this engaging in a game like D&D. I don’t want to have to improvise a new memory every time I cast magic missile, and I certainly don’t want my combats to be dragged out even longer than they already are.
In Critical Role, players describe how they character does their attack when the get a killing blow. Reserving engaging questions only for important moments (first time used, fight-ending moments, narratively crucial decision points) would be a good workaround.
It’s hard to provide a formula for making spell-casting more engaging, as it’s very dependent on themes and individual spells. But it is worth considering.
How I’ve made casting the magic in Welcome to Camp Merlin more engaging
I can broadly categorise my approach in three groups: positioning; character prompts; and telegraphing.
Shape Shift: Position your body so that your limbs are in the shape of the animal which you wish to become. Hold that shape for six seconds.
It’s not a strict ‘unable to cast in combat’ restriction, but it means the players will have to create the time and space to make the shape. If the player can also pose to show the shape their character for added whimsy.
Truth Food (food that makes the eater tell the truth): Whilst preparing food for consumption, speak aloud a truth that you have never told anybody.
This is a storygame-esque prompt, like the happy memory for expecto patronum. It also serves as a soft restriction depending on whether the character is around other people.
Sense Mind (locate nearby minds): Close your eyes, calm your body, and empty your mind of all thoughts.
Any other magic user can infer what magic you are doing by looking at you. In this instance, it also makes you vulnerable, so it’s a risky move in a game of cat-and-mouse.
(This is part 1 of a 3 part series about designing magic for tabletop roleplaying games. Get part 2 here. I’ll link part 3 when it’s finished.)
Unfortunately, Harry Potter remains the best cultural touchstone when discussing learning magic. This is unfortunate for several reasons, but the one I’m focusing on today is that the way that they learn magic in Harry Potter is boring.
A lot of the time it comes down to rote practice.
Try doing the spell again.
Make sure you can swish and flick properly.
Pronounce the words properly.
Sometimes the spells themselves are so interesting that they push the lessons to be very engaging. One of the more popular posts on this blog was about the 3 best spells in Harry Potter (and why they are the three best spells).
But if you’ve got a story (or in the case I am interested in, a roleplaying game) where magic needs to be learnt, the actual process of learning the magic should be engaging and interesting.
If your game is set in a magic school, then learning the magic should be engaging to play in and of itself.
Well it just so happens I have been writing a game about learning magic, set at summer school for kids from non-magical families who have suddenly found out they’ll be going to magic school at the end of the summer.
I have an underlying theory of magic that I am using where spells are like magical spirits called into service of the magic user. It’s not brand new, I’ve seen it before in various games. What is new is how I connect that to learning the spell.
First the magic user must coax the spell into making an initial connection with the user. This allows the user to cast the spell once on that day. If the magic user wants to cast that spell again, they must wait until a new day and then coax it again.
However, if the magic user can link with the spell, then they will be able to cast the spell once per day without needing to coax it every single time.
The template works well as long as the acts of coaxing the spell and linking with the spell are engaging.
I’ll show you an example spell so we can discuss the linking and coaxing.
I’ll talk another time another time about the actual magic and why I think this sort of diegetic spell is interesting, and also about the casting instructions. For now though I’ll focus on how to coax and link this spell.
To coax True Glue the character must player must choose an obviously false viewpoint (eg. the sky is green; water makes things dry; ice is hot etc.). Then they must refuse to abandon that viewpoint despite any and all evidence to the contrary. The other characters must actively refute and challenge the viewpoint with substantial arguments and evidence.
To link True Glue the character chooses two awkwardly sized, shaped or weighted items, They must then hold them, one in each hand, as though they were glued to their hands for the next six hours.
Both of these are tied to the nature of the spell. When coaxing the magic user must fix their point of view in place. When linking they must fix an object into their hand. This connects them to the spell, which is all about fixing two things together. The player is trying to entreat a magical being with their actions.
So what do I think is good about this design?
They’re thematically linked to the spell
The coaxing generates inter-character discussion by default
The linking causes clear problems that the players will have to solve – how will I eat? etc.
They are diegetic – you could use dice rolls to support this gameplay but it probably doesn’t need it
It shifts the core question of the game from whether or not the characters will succeed to how they will succeed. This is good for a game about kids learning magic which will be tonally lighter than most games.
I’m not claiming to have re-invented the wheel here. Followers of the Goblin Laws Of Gaming will have seen the Δ glog classes before, which focus their advancement on performing diegetic actions rather than accruing xp.
So I think this format makes learning magic more engaging than most tabletop roleplaying games I’ve seen, and certainly more engaging than most of the magic in the benchmark for magical learning, Harry Potter.
How I’ve adapted this system for Welcome to Camp Merlin
Each morning at the camp, the kids get to choose which spell they want to learn. The camp counsellors show the children how to coax the spell as an activity. Then they have the afternoon to attempt to link the spell – doing so also allows them to stitch a badge onto their camp uniform.
There are also several magical creatures that the children are taught about, as well as an array of magical locations and encounters in the forest surrounding the camp.
Follow the development and release of Welcome to Camp Merlin by:
Prophecies don’t work as easily in roleplaying games as they do in non-interactive (or less interactive) fiction. The ‘tactical infinity’ of roleplaying games poses problems.
In non-interactive fiction (such as a book, movie or tv-show) the fiction’s creator (for ease I’ll call them all authors) can ensure that any prophecies are sufficiently fulfilled. This is easy because the author can know how the prophecy will be fulfilled before they even write the prophecy itself. The other main component is that authors maintain Absolute Control of all the events occurring in their fiction.
Game masters have no such luxury.
Suppose that in my game, one of the players eats a herb which gives them prophetic visions. If the visions are too specific then I will have to push the world hard to enable the conditions of the prophecy to be met. This can crush player agency and tactical infinity. It is the oft-feared railroad.
Conversely, if the prophecies are too vague, then, for the players, it can feel like a frustrating game of ‘guess what I’m thinking’.
Now this wouldn’t be a problem if prophecies didn’t have to come true, but that solution raises its own issues. If some prophecies just don’t come true, what is the point of them? They just become possible futures which may or may not happen – who cares?
One solution would be to have an unreliable source of prophecies, such as The Oracle in The Matrix. She tells Neo that he is not The One, because she has an agenda. She told him exactly what he needed to hear so that he would be able to become The One.
Alternatively, you could do the Harry Potter solution
…and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives…
and make the prophecy linguistically tricky. However, without the Absolute Control of an author, a GM can run into issues. The author can ensure that Harry doesn’t die to a random encounter(and is therefore alive to be able to fight Voldemort in a duel, which), or a lucky crit, but a GM could easily wreck their game by protecting a player character from harm like that.
Continuum, the time-travelling roleplaying game presents a different solution.
Continuum and its singular timeline
In Continuum, you roleplay as a time-traveller in a society of time-travellers. Because you are part of this timeline, it is your duty to ensure it remains as you know it to be.
For example, if you know that Abraham Lincoln was assassinated on the 14th day of April in 1864, and you find out that another time-traveller is planning to assassinate John Wilkes Booth on the 13th of April, so that he cannot assassinate Lincoln on the 14th it is imperative that you prevent this from happening.
The existence of this paradox (or as continuum calls it, the as/as-not) will fragment your timeline, potentially to the degree that you can no longer corporeally interact with the universe.
A second example: you see a re-run of 90s sit-com Friends, and notice that you are in the background of the episode, sipping coffee and ordering a bagel.
But this never happened to you. In fact, you were born after the episode aired.
Waves of nausea wash over you. The as/as-not hits your soul, fragmenting the essence of your reality.
To repair the damage, you will have to go back in time and get cast as an extra. Well, there are other solutions, I’ll list a few solutions to both problems at the bottom of the post.
The character experiences a clear, precise vision of an event that will happen, unless the character deliberately acts to prevent it from happening.
If the character deliberately acts to prevent it from happening, they get a consequence.
This turns the prophecy into a forewarning of the future which you can stop, but at a cost.
It makes it specific enough to act directly upon, whilst allowing for player agency and the lack of Absolute Control that an author would enjoy.
Aim to make the visions poetic yet specific and clear. They can be lacking in specific detail, just like a dream, but the character should know what they experienced enough to act (or not act) upon it. Like when you’re dreaming of a place you’ve never been to before but in the dream you just know its your house. The character just knows certain details about the vision.
I would let players fulfill prophecies in an unintended way if it was within the scope and expectations of the game. However weasel-worming your way around the wording of ‘deliberately acts’ with some rules-lawyer shenanigans wouldn’t be allowed. The Fates will know you will face the consequences. The consequences should also be clearly telegraphed (or outright stated) for players.
Consequences should be really bad, hard-to-fix stuff. They should also be setting/tone dependent but I’ve listed a few suggestions below.
Any of the above but to people the player characters care about
Solutions to the Continuum scenarios above
Abraham Lincoln scenario
Go back in time to 13th of April 1864 and kill the time traveller
Go to a point in time where the time traveller is younger and attack them before they can go back to 1864
Allow John Wilkes Booth to be killed by the time traveller, and get futuristic surgery and acting classes so you can replace Booth after he is killed and kill Abraham Lincoln yourself
We can get even fancier with the Friends scenario
Time travel to the set of Friends and get cast as an extra (by using more time travel to get yourself added to production notes as an extra)
Time travel to before a key member of the production was working on Friends, befriend that production member then travel forward and call in a favour, therein getting a scene as an extra
Travel back in time and find a good impersonator as you and then use time travel shenanigans to get them cast as an extra on Friends
Travel back in time, abduct the cast and crew of Friends, force them to film the scene with you, mind-wipe them and out them back where you found them, then when the master tapes have been edited, insert the version of the scene with you in it into the episode
Travel to the future and hire a special effects expert to make a master tape matching the scene you’ve just watched, then sneak (by time-travelling) into the modern broadcasting house which just aired the episode you watched and swap out the original episode for the fake version you have. So the paradox is resolved, and it turns out you never really were in Friends. This creates another paradox – one of information origin. However, Continuum isn’t concerned with that, just with as/as-not paradoxes
Most of the problems in Continuum fall into two categories
Information Control: I know something, and must maintain the timeline. If I learn too much more, it will get harder to maintain the timeline (for instance, the more you know about the movements and actions of John Wilkes Booth, the more precise your movements in 1864 must be)
Narcissists: Nefarious time travellers are trying to mess with the timeline
Because you can time travel, you don’t have to worry about money and skills. You can obtain large amounts of money and any number of trivial ways, and you can travel away, spend years learning a skill and then travel back to when you want to use the skill.
Your main restriction is your Age (spending years learning skills will catch up with you) and the events which you know must happen.
The vast majority of spells in Harry Potter seem to involve
Aiming a wand
Enunciating words precisely
Waving the wand in a precise way
Exerting enough energy or power
Knowledge of the spell – either through learning or observation
This works great for a video game, all the precision can be timing of button presses and aiming with the mouse or the analogue sticks.
Mechanically these elements can be translated to a roleplaying game too. Investment of power can be handled by magic dice. You can also game-ify timing at the table.
And these mechanics would represent the fiction well.
But that fiction is still boring. The spells are basically fancy bullets.
Once you know what to do you just fire and forget.
There is no roleplaying-juice.
Except for Harry Potter’s three best spells.
The Patronus Charm conjures a glowing animal spirit which lifts your mood with its presence. It’s used to defeat Dementors, spectre-like floating rags which suck all feeling of love, hope and happiness from their target.
To create an effective patronus, you need to hit all the conditions in the bullet point list at the top of the post. But you also need to bring a powerful, deeply-happy memory to mind and focus on it during the casting.
This is a great matching of theme and mechanism, since Dementors are a clear allegory for depression.
The caster has to do something (think happy thoughts) which the spell is going to amplify.
It’s also a great spell for a roleplaying game – asking the players what memory they’re thinking of, discussing what memories they could use, debating why a certain character is failing at casting the spell. There is a lot of roleplay-juice here.
I know its not a spell but it’s brilliant.
The Polyjuice potion allows the drinker to assume to form of another, for about an hour. A D&D analogue would be Disguise Self.
To make the potion you need a bit of the target – a strand of their hair, nail clipping, eyelash etc.
This is once again a great matching of theme and mechanism.
The caster has to get something (the body part) which the spell uses to know what you should look like.
It works well in a roleplaying game because the players will have to somehow obtain the body part. Woe betide them if they accidently get a cat hair instead of a head hair. In the books, the ingredients are also restricted (requiring stealth shenanigans to steal from the potions master) and it takes months to brew (requiring an isolated hangout to brew it in). Tasty, tasty roleplay-juice.
The spell which returns Voldemort to corporeal form in chapter 32 of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Okay its another potion. The fact that my 2 of my 3 best spells in Harry Potter are potions is quite telling.
The Dark Lord must perform a ritual to return himself from a withered husk to his full corporeal body. There are three crucial ingredients to be poured into the bubbling cauldron.
Bone of the father, unknowingly given
Flesh of the servant, willingly sacrificed
Blood of the enemy, forcibly taken
This is a dark ritual. You need enemies, a servant who is taking care of your husk-form, access to the grave of your father and willingness to defile it. In the fiction, Voldemort also believes the ritual will be strongest with his biggest enemy, Harry. The wording of the ritual feels Shakespearean, and therein archaic and secretive.
In 5e, resurrection’s unique requirement is a high value diamond. Not very interesting, and one of the reasons why house-ruled resurrection rules are often touted.
I wouldn’t expect players to use this dark spell in a roleplaying game, unless they are meant to be baddies. However the general format of ‘get these three hard-to-obtain things so you can do the epic magic’ works well.
Bonus best spell: Riddikulus
A boggart will take the shape of something you fear. Visualising the thing you fear in a comedic situation (the giant spider is now floundering around wearing four pairs of roller skates) whilst casting the spell Riddikulus enables you to defeat the boggart.
Making the player visualise and describe how the embodiment of their fear becomes a source of mockery is more great roleplay-juice.
This is a bonus to the list because it retreads the ground that the patronus charm covered. Visualising humour to beat fear and visualising happiness to beat depression are just variations on a theme. Good variations, but variations still.
Applying the DAQ criteria
I wrote about the DAQ criteria previously here. You can use it to look at rpg character features by asking:
Is it Distinctive?
Is it Appreciable?
Is it Qualitative?
Since Harry Potter does not have a class system, we should be considering whether the spells are meaningfully distinct from any other available magic.
Expecto Patronum: Is distinct as its the only spell that can beat dementors and lift your mood. It is appreciable (as its the only good way to counter a dementor, when you use it you definitely appreciate your knowledge.) It’s also qualitative – a spirit is summoned and you now feel happier (or at least, not-worse than you were to begin with). 3/3
Polyjuice Potion: No other spell allows you to take another’s form so it is distinctive. It’s quite appreciable, since there are teleportation spells which are less effort, it’s mostly useful for cons in areas of restricted access. It is qualitative, your form is changing. 3/3
Dark Resurrection Ritual: Definitely distinct as there is no other reasonably achievable way of bypassing death. Very appreciable – if you can avoid death you will always appreciate it. Very qualitative – going from dead->alive is a quality change not a quantity change. 3/3
The other spells in Harry Potter
The combative ones
There are a large number of combative spells in Harry Potter are basically guns/tasers with different skins.
Stupefy – stuns target
Confundus – confuses target
Expelliarmus – disarms target
Petrificus Totalus – freezes target’s body
Any number of joke hex/curse/jinx spells that are included for their whimsical value, for instance, the bat-bogey hex or the slug-vomiting charm
Whilst I appreciate that whilst these spells are qualitatively different, most of the time it wouldn’t matter which one you used as they would all do the job – eliminate the target from the fight (at least for a moment).
All of these spells are qualitative and appreciable, but they are not very distinct from each other. So they probably all rate about 2/3 on the DAQ criteria.
Their main problem, for rpgs, goes back to the bullet list from the start of this post.
Once you know what to do just fire and forget
There’s no roleplay-juice here.
No added value.
The joke ones might get some humour and develop the feel of the setting, its true. Establishing the whimsy of the wizarding world (or reminding us of it) is just as useful in a game as in a novel. But they don’t give us much to speak to the character with.
The utility ones
There are many spells which exist as utility – these spells either need to exist for the setting to work or are obvious spells to write into a fiction
Aguamenti – water making charm
Incendio – fire making charm
Wingardium Leviosa – levitation charm
Apparition – teleportation
Obliviate – false memory/memory wipe spell
Accio – summoning spell
Reparo – repairing charm
Whilst the Harry Potter books do explore the consequences of these spells at times, they are all entirely uninspiring renditions of their concept. They’re very obvious in their execution.
Your game might need spells like this, but I’m sure you can make them more interesting.
The overly specific ones
Mostly these exist to contribute the feeling of whimsy, or to flesh out the laughably undeveloped transfiguration branch of magic.
Waddiwasi – summons chewing gum to fly at the target
Vera Verto – turn an animal into a goblet?
Orchideous – a bunch of flowers bursts from the wand
They are too specific to see enough use in a roleplaying game, where players are more inclined to optimise than book characters.
Given the opportunity, players will optimize the fun out of a game
In Harry Potter, these three spells are unforgivable if used on another person, earning you life imprisonment in the wizarding prison.
Imperio – mind control
Crucio – torture spell
Avada Kedavra – killing spell
But other magic can seriously mess with somebody’s mind – the mind-wiping spell Obliviate and the truth potion Veritaserum.
But other magic can torture – there are loads of nasty curses and jinxes designed specifically to belittle, disfigure or abuse.
But other magic can kill – powerful destructive spells such as Bombarda and Confringo.
This category of spell makes no sense to me. There’s also no added value to them.
Divination in Harry Potter is absolutely awesome.
It’s the best branch of magic in Harry Potter.
Theme = mechanics throughout.
You want information? Discern it from patterns in random, chaotic systems.
*Chef’s Kiss gesture and noise*
SECOND CURVEBALL ALERT
Divination is so good entirely because it is a copy and paste of real-life divination techniques.
What’s the lesson in all this?
Any Harry Potter inspired rpg would do well to add more flavourful roleplay-juice conditions and restrictions to their spells.
Any roleplaying game would do well to add more flavourful roleplay-juice conditions and restrictions.
Stop making your spells fire-and-forget fancy bullets.
Reminder to steal everything
I’ve talked before about why you should mess about with canon, modifying it to suit your game and reskinning it between genres. You should do this with the world of Harry potter too. Within the boundaries defined by law, of course.
Death of the Author?
I want to make it abundantly clear.
I reject Harry Potter’s author’s transphobic views.
I could write an essay on the problematic elements of Harry Potter. There are many. I won’t though, it has all been said before and this is not that sort of blog.
I would hate for anybody to think that the praise of some of the magic design in this post equates to praise of views which are oppressive towards them. It does not.
I’ve already given some useable statements/rules-of-thumb but here’s something that is useable in a concrete way. I re-mastered my Hippogriff generator from a previous Joesky Tax.
An unnecessary copypasta I made some time ago which I hope effectively demonstrates my feelings about everything Potter related that has been released since about 2011
Merlin’s Beard! What in the name of Dumbledore did you just say about me, you little mudblood? I’ll have you know I graduated top of my magical cookery class at Hogwarts, and I’ve been involved in numerous charity bake-offs, and I have made over 6 million confirmed pumpkin pasties. I am trained in Bertie Botts every flavour beans and I’m the top chef in the entire Department of Magical Transportation. You are nothing to me but just another student. I will pie-grenade you with precision the likes of which has never been seen before on this Earth, mark my Pottering words. You think you can get away with escaping from this magical train? Think again, mudblood. As we speak I am contacting the best aurors across the UK and you’ve still got the trace right now so you better prepare for the storm, muggle-lover. The storm that wipes out the pathetic little thing you call your life. You’re so expelled, kid. I can apperate anywhere, anytime, and I can pasty you in over seven hundred ways, and that’s just with my bare hands. Not only am I extensively trained in pasty combat, but I can turn my hands into spikes and you won’t believe what I can do with my Chocolate Frogs, which and I will use it to their full extent to make sure you stay on this train, you little goblin. If only you could have known what unholy retribution your little escape was about to bring down upon you, maybe you would have stayed on the damn train. But you couldn’t, you didn’t, and now you’re paying the price, you goddamn idiot. I will spike you with my particularly spikey spikes. This train doesn’t like people getting of it, kiddo.