The “Harry Potter” series once cast a spell over an entire generation of young readers and moviegoers, but now that the global franchise’s most anticipated video game is less than a week away from release, a good deal of that magic seems to have vanished into thin air.

Hogwarts Legacy, an open-world role-playing game set in the wizarding world created by British author J.K. Rowling, launches on PC, PlayStation 5 and Xbox on Feb. 10. Far from the largely low-effort movie tie-in games released in the early 2000s, Hogwarts Legacy once looked like a legitimate AAA experience — until it became a flashpoint in the ever-evolving transgender rights movement.

This latest front of the culture wars was precipitated by none other than Rowling herself. Since 2020, the writer has made a habit of claiming that growing acceptance of transgender people in some way erodes what it means to live as a biological woman. Rowling has offered caveats here and there, but the aggregate of her tweets — as well as her outspoken opposition to legislation in Scotland that eased the process for people seeking to legally change their gender — telegraphs Rowling’s position.