Every video game version of the Philosophers Stone

The Harry Potter video games stand out surprisingly well when compared to other licenced properties, not only by quality but that almost every console had a unique version of the game, I have already reviewed the PC version on this website and I feel its time we take a look at all of other versions of Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone, these wont be full on reviews but I will discuss what I like and dislike about each version, I own all of them apart from the PS2 game mainly due to the fact that it costs and arm and leg to purchase but I have managed to at least lend a copy from a close friend so without further ado lets get into this.

PC version

The PC game was developed by Knowwonder and was released in 2001, it followed the plot line of the book and had a linear level based system.

The game stands out for heavy use of the computer mouse, in order to learn spells you needed to trace shapes representing them and you would even use your mouse to aim and fire your magic, I feel this gave the game a unique although very slight realism which only the PC port could offer.

You moved and flew using the WASD keys which also work very well and I feel that this version controls a lot more smoothly to the PS1 game which I will cover next.

My biggest complaint with this version is that the collectibles are pretty lame, you can collect different coloured beans that can be traded with Fred and George to buy Wizard cards, some of the cards are also hidden throughout the game, the fact that all the twins do here is sell you cards it is a bit disappointing compared to other versions.

The PS1 version

This is the version I have most recently finished so I am going into this with a fresh mind.

Again this game follows a linear path however it does differ in its collectibles, you still grab beans but this time not only can you get wizard cards but you can also unlock a more powerful knockback jinx as well as the nimbus 2000 and better quidditch armour. I will say that the areas are very guided as there is very little room for exploration, the enemies can be interesting but the game auto selects spells for you so defeating them requires very little skill.

Flying really takes some time to learn here, I found it very difficult to control, the broom stick feels very slippery and trying to get all of the hoops takes some proper skills, there is a part in the final challenge rooms that really had me struggling at times. The actual quidditch matches in the game are quite boring as you simply follow the rings and grab the snitch, I wish there was a little more to it but the I suppose that’s what the quidditch world cup video game is for.

There are a few different types of gameplay here including sections similar to games likes Crash Bandicoot, other areas needed stealth gameplay as well even racing, there is really something here for every gamer although at times I did feel like there was a few too many different game types.

GB Version

I will be honest with this one and say that I cant really give a proper opinion here because I have never got far enough in this version to even get into Hogwarts.

But what I can tell you is that it is a traditional turn based RPG which is very challenging and follows the events of the book rather than the movie, I would like to finish the game one day and I think its is deserving of its own full review but that is for another day.

So apologies if this one was brief but I just haven’t experienced this game enough to go into more detail or fairly critique it.

GBA version

This is my personal favourite version of the Philosophers Stone.

This game is very challenging for new players because unlike other Harry Potter games, in this version you can actually lose the house cup! yes that’s right at the end of the game you may not actually beat Slytherin, you gain and lose house points based on your performance in the games tasks.

The main game requires Harry to learn new spells and successfully complete tasks from the book, a lot of the time puzzle solving is required to complete the areas, some inspiration from 2D Zelda games was definitely used here as this has a very knock off feel of those games. Of course this is no where near as good as a AAA title but it has a lot of charm and is very difficult the part where you have to sneak around Hogwarts castle avoiding the prefects always has me puling out my hair but trying to beat your house points score every time you beat the game will keep you coming back. I highly recommend picking this one up if you get the chance.

And here we are at the very expensive one, the reason this game costs so much is because it was released after the Chamber of Secrets video game so not many people bought this assuming it was an older game and now its worth quite a bit and is a game I am desperate to add to my personal PS2 collection.

The first thing I want to point out with this game is that it looks great, Hogwarts is huge and is full of colours and things to see, I love that you can explore the castle after bed time to find secret passages and collect hidden wizard cards, there is a lot to do in this game and most of the time its more fun to explore than stick with the main campaign.

You can now set spells to specific buttons for quick uses and thankfully the game controls very well, this made flying a lot of fun, due to the advanced technology of the PS2 when you were flying you could see far beneath your broom and flying around the castle was really satisfying as it helped to show how large the in game maps actually are.

The Bertie Botts beans are back and this time they are used as currency in Fred and Georges shop, the only complaint I have with the game is Harry shouting the beans flavour every time he picks one up as it gets annoying very fast.

And that’s all of the video game adaptions of the Philosophers Stone, which one is your favourite? I think mine will always be the GBA game but the PS2/ XBOX/ Gamecube version is a close second !

Perhaps one day I should go over all versions of the Chamber of Secrets as well ūüôā

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Book Review: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Goblet of fire is the fourth book in the Harry Potter series, it was released in 2000 and is the first larger book in the series with a page count of 636.

The book follows Harry Potter in his fourth year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, this year Harry’s names is slipped into the Goblet of Fire which forces him to compete in the Triwizard tournament, a deadly competition with students competing from various magical schools.

Every year the Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher is replaced, in the Goblet of Fire it is Alastor Moody who is nicknamed Mad Eye Moody. Mad Eye Moody a rather scary looking fellow and a famous Auror has a threatening and serious demeanor about him, by the end of the story you realise that he has a connection with another character from the book and is maybe more menacing than he already seems.

Madma Maxine a temporary love interest for Hagrid is worth mentioning as well as the meddling Reeta Skeeta a writer for the Daily prophet.

There are three tasks to the Tri Wizard tournament and these were best parts of the book for me as they really helped to add more intense moments and changes in the environment from the usual Hogwarts castle. My favourite task was the second task where the Champions had dive into Hogwarts Lake and rescue the person they cared about the most, for Harry it was Ron however Hermione was to be rescued by Durmstrang student Viktor Krum.

The book differs an awful from the film and a lot of changes in the movie completely mess with the lore of the Harry Potter universe, an example of this is the choice that while Beauxbatons school takes in the majority of European Withches and Wizards, in the film it is female only making no sense what so ever. Dumbledores reaction to Harrys name being entered into the Goblet of Fire is completely different in the book as he comes across as more calm and doesn’t get as angry as he does in the film, the final task is a lot more interesting in the book as the film took out many of the creatures, riddles and traps due to time constraints. The film cut out Dobby the house elf and a house elf called Winky who played major roles in the book. Hermione’s sub plot fighting for house elf rights was also cut from the film.

The final major change I feel I should mention is that the Dance lesson in the film was not in the book at all and was a new addition.

What a fantastic read this one was this is easily my favourite Potter book yet but I do wish they adapted it better to film, this is where the series starts to get really serious and is the first book to not end on a happy note, it leaves the reader nervous about whats to come and unsure of if they should be worried or not and I love it because of this, If I had any complaint Ron Weasley is fairly unlikable in this book due to his fallout with Harry, I can understand why hes upset but it comes as childish and slightly annoying.

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Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling

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Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban was released on the eighth of July 1999 and is the third book in the Harry Potter franchise, for a lot of people this is their favourite book in the series and I can see why, for one its scarier and darker than both its predecessors with maybe a few exceptions in the Chamber of Secrets plus it introduces some fan favourite characters including convicted murderer Sirius Black and the new defence against the dark arts teacher Professor Lupin.

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After his some what demise in the last book the lack of Lord Voldemort is not too much of an issue especially with the addition of Sirius Black being a potential threat as well as the terrifying Dementors who are guards at Azkaban, the Dementors will suck out the happiness of anyone who comes near them and what makes the Dementors even more frightening is their kiss, a Dementors kiss will not only suck out a persons happiness but also suck out their soul leaving the victim to a fate worse than death, Harry learns a new spell called Expecto Patronum which can help fend off the Dementors protecting Hogwarts Castle from Sirius Black.

As with the previous books a few moments in the Prisoner of Azkaban differ from the film however not much really stands out here,¬†for example an entire section focusing on Harry Receiving a Fire Bolt broomstick is in the book but in the film Harry doesn’t receive it until the very end completely skipping over this plot point, the big twist with Scabbers is focused on more in the book and Hermiones new cat Crookshanks actually plays an extremely useful role here unlike in the film.

 

Harry Potters third adventure is yet again an excellent read and is a great addition to the franchise, I can understand why a lot of people really love this book but personally I still enjoyed Chamber of Secrets slightly more.

Thank you for reading this review of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by JK Rowling

you can contact me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

 

 

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling

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Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is the second book in the Harry Potter franchise, the book was written by one of my all time favourite authors J.K. Rowling and it was published in book stores on the second of July 1997 just one year after the release of its predecessor.

As a child the Chamber of Secrets was my favourite book in the Harry Potter series and at the moment that opinion is still the same, Harry’s second year at Hogwarts spawned many of my favourite characters and moments in the story, I would say that the most memorable for me would be Gilderoy Lockhart the new defence against the dark arts teacher who is a snobby, big headed and manipulative liar which is written to be obvious to the reader at first but throughout the book you start to learn of some of the more horrid things he has done to become as famous as he is, of course you cant forget the introduction to the Whomping Willow either, the Whomping Willow is an extremely violent tree that lives on the Hogwarts Castle grounds, its notorious for attacking anyone or anything that comes near it by swiping at them with its massive branches and in most cases causing very serious damage, then there’s Harry’s weird first encounter with Dobby the house elf and finally you cant forget that this book also reveals the true identity of Lord Voldermort who had not been completely defeated at the end of the first book.

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Speaking of the first book it should be noted that the second entry in the series is much darker and is therefore mildly scarier in comparison, the book deals with some rather grizzly topics including the murder of a student, hearing voices, numerous students being petrified by an unknown force and certain creatures wanting to devour the flesh of Harry and Ron.

If you are a fan of the Harry Potter movies then you may be interested in reading the second novel¬†since a lot of moments in the book¬†were missing from the film adaptation, in particular my favourite chapter “The Deathday Party” where Harry, Ron and Hermione join the ghosts of Hogwarts in the dungeons to help celebrate Sir Nearly Headless Nick’s day of passing is one of my fondest memories of reading the Chamber of Secrets as a child, on top of this J.K. Rowling yet again does a fantastic job of making all of the characters lovable apart from the the more villainous ones and when the mystery of the book is finally solved it actually links back to the early chapters which is great because not only does that prove that J.K Rowling didn’t just throw together some half arsed answer but the reader is able to¬†actually solve the mystery themselves before the answer is revealed which only makes the book worth reading even more.

Thank you for reading this review of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by JK Rowling

you can contact me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

That was the last review for this month but April is going to be entirely dedicated to one of the most influential film directors of all time so look forward to that.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (PC) (2002) Review

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A year and a half ago I reviewed a mediocre Philosophers Stone game for the PC, it was a fairly bare bones 3D platformer that was way too short and it skipped over many of the best moments from the film and the original novel, today we will be taking look at the PC video game of the second book in the series Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

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You play the game as Harry Potter the boy who lived who is attending his second year at Hogwarts school of Witchcraft and Wizardry, just like the first game this is a 3D platformer where the objective of the game is too attend classes and beat challenge maps, a huge difference here is how you learn spells, in the first game learning magic was awkward because you needed to trace over shapes with your mouse and with such a limited amount of time performing this task became very difficult, thankfully the game designers have taken a different approach with the sequel as now instead of tracing we instead need to hit corresponding keys on the keyboard in a specified order in the style of a rhythm game.

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Quidditch matches have also been heavily modified and I don’t like the changes they have made here, instead of having complete control over your broom so you can fly freely the game controls the broom for the player and all you need to do is bump into the enemy seeker until you are close enough to catch the golden snitch, its boring, it has no challenge at all and the worst part of it is that it feels like the game designers were just being lazy and were trying to rush out the game.

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The graphics are impressive when compared to the first game, everything is smoother and less pixelated but for a game from 2002 they are still pretty bad, on the bright side the level designs are more detailed and are genuinely more interesting to explore, the best part of the game is finding all of the secrets around Hogwarts castle and the castle grounds, through out the game you will learn an array of spells which can be used to defeat enemies and open up secret passageways where you may find a famous witches and wizards card.

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The first game had only 25 cards to collect and for doing so all you would receive¬†was a slightly extended ending, this game has a whopping 101 cards which is the staple for the majority of the Harry Potter games, the cards come in three categories, gold, silver and bronze, the bronze cards are common and for every 10 you collect you will gain an additional health bar, the silver cards are uncommon and for every ten of those you find you will come one step closer to accessing a bonus area which can only be accessed once the player finds all 40 of the silver cards, the bonus room is a platforming level, which is full of enemies and puzzles, the player has a set amount of time to try and find the 11 rare gold cards in the game, again I don’t think its worth going out of your way to collect these but honestly it was much more fun to do so here than it was before.

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You can buy cards from other students around Hogwarts by using Bertie Botts every flavoured beans which can be found throughout the game, this isn’t necessary since every card can be found hidden inside and around the school but it is helpful if you don’t want to back track later on, the best way to collect beans is by entering the bonus bean room which you can only access if your house has the most points during the segments of the game where Dumbledore tallies up the house¬†scores.

The music in the game is what can be expected from a cash grab title that was made to help push DVD sales but its fun to listen too and not once is it annoying nor does it take away from the game play experience.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets for the PC is a fun little game that is worth picking up if you manage to find it really cheap but if you cant your really not missing out on much, I can quite happily say that this is a good game but its far from a great Harry Potter gaming experience 6.3/10

I hope you enjoyed my review of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets for the PC

If you respect my opinion, I will respect yours

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

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Book Review: Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone by JK Rowling

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Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone was the first book in a long and beloved series of books written by one of the greatest authors of our generation JK Rowlingshot-a-014n

I cant imagine that anyone one on the planet doesn’t know the story of Harry Potter but just to be safe the¬†first book is about an eleven year old boy who suffers tremendous abuse from both his Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon who legally became his guardians after his parents Lily and James were killed by an evil Wizard known as Lord Voldermort, Voldermort tries to kill Harry as a baby but Harry survives hence why he is known as the boy who lived, while he grows up with the Dursleys who make him sleep under the stairs, praise their other son Dudley for hurting him and are genuinely terrible people, the only surviving memory Harry has of his parents is a lighting bolt shaped scar on his forehead that he was left with after the attack.

After receiving countless mysterious letters in the mail all of which are destroyed by his Uncle, Harry eventually finds out that he is a wizard and is sent to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry so that he can learn to become the legendary hero he was born to be, by now we have been introduced to one of the most important characters of the franchise Hagrid the grounds keeper and not too long after that we meet some of the other very important characters including Hermione Granger an intelligent but rather bossy young witch, Ronald Weasley who is very clumsy but has a good heart, Draco Malfoy the snobby school bully who thinks that his family is better than everyone else, Neville Longbottom who is the most important character in the franchise other than Harry but we will get to that another day, Severus Snape a potions master who really dislikes Harry, Albus Dumbledore the Head Master of the school and most importantly in this book is Professor Quirrell a seemingly nervous wreck of teacher who stutters every sentence and is constantly on edge.

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Hogwarts has four school houses Hufflepuff, Slytherin, Ravenclaw and Gryffindor each student is placed in one these houses depending on their personalities the bravest and most courageous students are placed in Gryffindor, the most knowledgeable and witty students are placed in Ravenclaw, the most caring and loyal of students are placed in Hufflepuff and the most ambitious students are placed in Slytherin but a clever detail JK Rowling has hinted at in the series is that Gryffindor is the only house you can choose to join since you have to choose to be brave and if you have seen the movie or read the book then you know that this small detail plays a very important part in the Harry Potter story.

While on break after learning new spells and how to make potions Harry, Ron and Hermione accidentally enter a forbidden area on the fourth floor corridor and what they find behind the door is what leads them to start trying to unravel the mystery of the Philosophers Stone and who they believe may be trying to steal it.

Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone is one of the most important books in existence, not only was it the start of Harry’s journey into becoming a wizard but more importantly it was the start of JK Rowlings journey of becoming one of the most influential writers of all time.

This is a fantastic book, its well written to point where JK Rowling doesn’t explain things in a lot of detail so the reader is able to use their imagination to create a vision of the magical world in their own minds instead of how the author sees it, the characters are perfect you will find Hermione annoying just like Ron does but you will learn to warm up to her through out the book, Draco Malfoy and Dursleys are all really unlikable and you will hate them which is great because you are supposed to dislike them and Albus Dumbledore really does seem like a very wise old wizard who has a unique perspective on life,however there are one or two plot holes in this first installment but obviously due to spoilers I won’t go into them, if you are unsure as to whether you want to check out the Harry Potter books this is a really good place to start because not only is it the first of the franchise but its also the shortest and in my personal opinion one of the very best.

Thank you for reading this review of Harry Potter and Philosophers Stone by JK Rowling

you can contact me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

and yes Christmas reviews are coming, I promise ūüôā

Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone (PC) (2001) Review

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I remember playing Harry Potter video games when I was a child, I used to own the Philosophers Stone on the Ps1 and both the Chamber of Secrets and Prisoner of Azkaban games on the PS2.

There are many Philosophers Stone games and the most rare of them all is the second generation version (Ps2, Xbox and GameCube) due to the price of this game being rather ridiculous I refused to buy it until I could find it for cheap in a flee market or a charity shop so when I saw the PC version being sold for penny’s in my local charity shop I quickly snapped it up expecting to be playing the rare second generation version only to be surprised that this particular game was very unique in itself and actually provided a completely new experience I didn’t expect.

The only question now is was that experience good?

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You play the game as the Young wizard Harry Potter who has just started his first year at Hogwarts school of Witchcraft and Wizardry, you spend the majority of the game attending classes such as Defense against the Dark Arts, Broomstick flying and Charms.

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When you attend a class you are almost immediately told to trace over a shape using your mouse, you will need to hit a certain percentage of the shape in order to proceed to next difficulty of the spell learning minigame, you are required to pass level 1 which will award you five points for Gryffindor and after you succeed you will be taken to the next level, the more levels you pass the more points you will earn for Gryffindor but you are only required to finish level 1 in order too continue with the main game.

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The only time that attending a class is any different is when you take part in a flying lesson because instead of tracing shapes this time you will need to fly through many different rings, this section works surprisingly well using the keyboards controls considering that for most of the lesson you will be using the speed up key which makes your broom stick fly much faster than usual.

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After you finish the tracing mini game you are always then told to complete a bunch of challenges which mostly rely on you using that new spell, you will often be taken into a number of rooms to perform these challenges, you will also have the opportunity to collect the challenge stars which depending on how many you can find will award you with different amounts of points for Gryffindor once the challenge is complete, these stars are really easy to find so you should almost always be awarded maximum points for completing these challenges.

Fred and George

When playing through the main game you will also have the opportunity to collect other items, one of these items is the Bertie Botts every flavor beans which are only needed for you to give to Fred and George Weasley  as they need it for a top secret practical joke they are planning on Slytherin.

wizard cards

The other collectible items are the famous Witches and Wizards cards which are hidden in secret areas all throughout Hogwarts, some of the cards you can get from Fred and George but the Majority you will need to find yourself, collecting all 25 cards only gives you a slightly expanded ending to the game so its not really worth the effort unless you really want to get 100 percent.

The general gameplay is mostly 3D platforming which works extremely well using the keyboard and mouse, the game runs smoothly providing you play on an XP operating system  otherwise you will have serious lag and slowdown due to the game being so old.

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You will play levels based on many of the famous scenes in the movie by far the most memorable part of the game for me was avoiding Filch and Mrs Norris in the forbidden section of the Library.

There are a few boss fights in the game but they are not that difficult as most of time just casting spells blindlessly will¬†defeat them, the only boss I even had the slightest trouble with was the final boss and even he wasn’t that difficult.

The music is very memorable of the film which is a nice addition to the game, not all the music is from the movie but the original tracks are also very fun to listen too so its difficult to complain about

Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone for the PC is a decent title in the Harry Potter game franchise, this particular version is a lot of fun but it is way too short as it can be finished with just a few hours, the game also feels very bare as most scenes from the film are missing which really is a shame, on the bright side there is a level based on a section which was only in the book which is a nice touch, it has tight controls, fun music and ok game play.

Unfortunately as much as I enjoy this game it is not one of the best Harry Potter games I have ever played but it is a lot of fun for what it is so I am going to rate this game slightly better than an average score 5.5/10

I hope you enjoyed my review of Harry Potter and Philosophers Stone for the PC

If you respect my opinion, I will respect yours

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

You can find me on Miiverse by searching for draskafer