BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: Entertainment  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
Friday, 16 November, 2001, 15:25 GMT
Potter game targets youngsters
The visuals are excellent
The game whisks you away to Hogwarts
By the BBC's David Gibbon

Harry Potter has become something of a phenomenon - the movie has broken all records with advance takings topping 2m and JK Rowling's books have notched up sales of more than 100 million.

And in the world of video games, the first Potter title has been released with industry experts predicting it will be the most successful of the year.

Huge orders have already been received by gaming stores across the UK and Sony has even launched its own PlayStation pack, comprising of a PSone console, a gamepad and a copy of the Harry Potter game.

Based on the first book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, the game has been released on PC, PSone and on both the Game Boy Colour and Game Boy Advance handheld consoles.

Harry Potter is sure to fly to the top of the charts
Learn to ride a broomstick
Each one is unique as the developers claim to have created each version to make maximum use of the technology available.

The PC version of the game is easily the most aesthetically pleasing, with near perfect textures and a 3D engine that was also used in both Clive Barker's dark epic Undying and the violent Unreal Tournament.

But using the same graphics engine is where the similarities end, as Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone has clearly been developed with youngsters firmly in mind.

Both the PC and PS1 versions have a similar plot - though the former is more of a visual adventure whereas the latter is more action-orientated and clearly aimed at an even younger audience.

On PC, most of the action takes place at the Hogwarts School and the gameplay involves exploring its halls and grounds, studying to become a wizard, learning to fly a broomstick and playing Quidditch.

Simplistic

In addition, players have to collect objects to solve puzzles, interact with other characters from the book and learn how to use spells and potions.

Much of the game is very simplistic and will be disliked by the more discerning gamer. For example, there are five spells to learn on the PC and to be successful all you have to do is get to a classroom and trace a symbol on-screen using your mouse.

Although it is slightly more difficult than it sounds, players only need to accurately trace 50% of the outline to be successful.

While all versions of this game will not tax even the smallest area of grey matter, the excellent visuals really do transport players into Harry's magical world.

But the fact that this game allows you to chat with the much loved characters from the books and explore Hogwarts and all its charms and secrets will be reason enough to send this flying to the top of the charts.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone is published by EA and is available for PC, PSone, Game Boy Colour and Game Boy Advance.

Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Entertainment stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Entertainment stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes