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

You can find me on Miiverse by searching for draskafer

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Book Review: Kingdom Keepers Disney After Dark by Ridley Pearson

There will be Spoilers !!!

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That’s right I’m reviewing a book and if your wondering why its taken me three years to get around to book reviews that’s because I have never really been a huge reader but I have recently decided to try and delve into the world of literature and too give you my opinion on some popular and obscure book titles.

The first book I am going to be reviewing is Kingdom Keepers: Disney After Dark by Ridley Pearson, this title is the first in this very popular series.

The book focuses on the lives of five teenagers (Finn, Charlene, Philby, Maybeck and Willa) who have been offered the opportunity to become virtual Disney Hosts, if you have ever been to Walt Disney world you will have noticed cast members walking around and offering help and guidance to the guests.

These teenagers are becoming DHI’s (Disney Hosts Interactive) allowing them to have holograms of themselves walking around the Magic Kingdom as virtual cast members, all five of them agree to have virtual versions of themselves created and afterwards they part from each other and get on with their lives.

Or at least that’s what they wanted to happen but unfortunately every time they go to sleep they wake up as their holograms in the Magic Kingdom, they learn that they have no control over this ability from an old man named Wayne who they meet every night while they are in hologram form.

Wayne explains to the teenagers that a great darkness and evil is trying to take over the Magic Kingdom and possibly the world, these evil entities have been code named the Overtakers, Wayne also explains that all five of them have been chosen to be the heroes who will eventually save the day.

The Overtakers seem to be famous Disney Villains who reside in some of the parks more famous attractions, The villain in Book 1 is Maleficent the evil witch from Sleeping Beauty, she is very spooky  in this book and she tends to talk in a whisper like and raspy voice which definitely makes her character much more creepy.

She uses a lot of magic throughout the book although most of time she is using to try and kill the five heroes and at times the book takes a very dark turn because of this, by far the scariest part of the book for me is when all of the dolls in its a small world come to life and start trying to bite the five main characters.

The only character I really connected with in the book was Wayne and that was because he was very mysterious and a lot of time I personally felt that he had a very ghostly vibe to his character which often allowed me to see him as a guardian angel watching over the heroes, unfortunately he was also the only character that i found remotely interesting as a lot of the other characters were a bit too normal and boring for my tastes.

I was very impressed that the way Ridley Pearson described the layout of the park and the attractions was very accurate to the layout of the Magic Kingdom in real life, this is a nice touch for people who visit the parks often as they can visualize the descriptions in the book to those areas in the real park.

In conclusion Kingdom Keepers Disney After Dark was a fun book to read but overall it wasn’t that interesting and at times I felt that it overstayed its welcome, if your a fan of Disney then this book is definitely worth your time and even if your not a fan of Disney this book is fairly cheap to pick up and is worth giving a shot especially if your a fan of adventure and fantasy.

I hope you enjoyed this review of Kingdom Keepers Disney After Dark by Ridley Pearson

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

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.

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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.

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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

 

 

The girl who leapt through time (2006) Review

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Makoto Konno is an ordinary teenager, she goes to high school, hates her little sister, her emotions are all over the place and she loves hanging out with her two best friends Chiaki and Kosuke

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Apart from the fact that Makoto is extremely clumsy and a bit of goof ball her life is fairly normal for a girl of her age, but that all changes when she is asked to return some books too one of classrooms in her school, when she arrives the class room appears to be completely empty, she discovers a message on the blackboard which reads “Time waits for no one”

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She thinks nothing of this and she returns the books to their proper place but being the klutz she is, she falls on a walnut and crushes it. On her way home she is racing down a steep hill on her bike, she hears a railroad crossing ahead as it is bleeping warning pedestrians of  an incoming train, Makoto tries to use the brakes but they wont work, she hits the rail and flies off her bike straight into the oncoming train and presumably dies.

A few Seconds later she is back on top of the hill and is in pain after falling off her bike and she hears the rail road crossing warn passers by of the same train that hit her previously.

Obviously she gets very confused by this and she goes to visit her Auntie Witch

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She Explains to Makoto that she had peformed a time leap which means that she leapt through time and time traveled. We also learn that time leaps can be peformed by a lot of teenagers her age, but not many know that they have this ability.

As you may expect like any person who discovers that they can time travel Makoso starts time leaping whenever she can, she starts time leaping to get what she wants, to change how she deals with situations because if she does screw up anything she can reverse time and start again, she even time leaps so she can keep redoing her maths test until she has a perfect grade.

Makoso starts to get very selfish knowing that she can now have multiple chances at any thing that life throws at her and that nothing in her life will ever go wrong again.

At least that’s what she thought because later on in the movie Makoso notices a Tattoo of the number 9 on her arm, at first she thinks nothing of it and she carry’s on time leaping only to realise that the 9  is now a 6, this number represents the amount of time leaps Makoso has left,.

Makoso starts to feel foolish that she wasted almost of all of her time leaps and with only one left she decides that would be a great idea to time leap back to the begging of the movie so that she can get her friend Kosuke in a relationship with a girl who has a crush on him, but by doing this she ends up managing to sprain the girls ankle, since Makoso just walked away not realising what had happened Kosuke borrows Makoso’s bike and starts rushing to his house to get the girls ankle fixed but little does he know that he is heading towards the same train from the beginning of the movie.

Makoso Realises this and with no time leaps left she runs to try and stop her friend before it is too late.

The films plot is very impressive considering that a lot of anime’s are full of action, have an antagonist of some sort and are genuinely un-realistic, but with this anime its not the case at all because these teenagers act like normal teenagers, the high school looks and feels like a normal high school and even when Makoso starts time leaping she uses her new ability for non important things such as redoing karaoke over and over again, going back in time so she can eat her meals for a second time and to just genuinely avoid awkward situations, the reason I bring this up is because when I was a teenager if I this ability I would be using it in a similar manner.

The icing on the cake is the animation, this movie is beautiful every scene is hand drawn and its amazing. What may surprise a lot of people is that the animation and designs of the characters are quite simple but the backgrounds have had so much effort and time put into them that they really stand out, I don’t see this as a bad thing because its actually quite a nice change of pace considering that with most animated films and animes its the characters them selves which stand out the most compared the the rest of the imagery the film has offer, this film is a complete reversal of the usual formula and it works really well because it allows the viewer to really soak in the animation and ultimately 9 times out of ten they will appreciate the animation a lot more as well as the time and effort that went into making the film.

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The girl who leapt through time is an amazing film it has top notch animation, a wonderful cast of characters, a brilliant plot and writing and it some heart warming and heart breaking moments which are bound to bring out some emotions in any who watches it.

If you haven’t yet seen this movie, I highly recommend giving it a watch

I hope you enjoyed this review

If you repect 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