The first time I went to the Warner Brothers Harry Potter Studio Tour was in 2015, just after they had added the Hogwarts Express and Kings Cross set to the tour. At the end of November 2019 we made a return visit, mainly to see how different it was dressed for Christmas and with snow.
Harry Potter is back, well in Lego form, on the iPad. The first Lego Harry Potter game for the iPad (and iPhone) was a great success in our house. Enjoyed by all and still played a lot today. However we have been looking forward to the next instalment, our anticipation getting hyped even more when Harry Potter: Years 5-7 was released for all the other gaming platforms.
So far I’ve only downloaded the 466MB App and no one has had a chance to really play the game… so no idea if it’s better or worse than the original and no idea if it’s any good.
First glance is that the graphics are better than the first one, the app appears to be snappier (but that may be because my first glance was using the new iPad rather the original iPad, however the game is (allegedly) compatible with the original iPad, which is nice as some new games are only compatible with iPad 2 or better).
Gameplay is pretty standard Lego gaming style, combination of puzzles and processes to progress through.
My only real concern is that the latter part of Harry Potter is certainly darker than the first four films. However this is Lego and when you “die” in a Lego game, you basically fall to pieces and you can always build the Lego pieces back together!
Overall I think this is going to be a fun game and at £2.99 is very good value. I don’t know what (if anything) is missing from the game compared to the console version, but at first glance it does look more like the PSP version than the PS3 version.
What this game also does is ask the question, what is the future of mobile gaming systems, when you can buy the iPod touch (which supports this game) for about the same price as the Nintendo 3DS or PS Vita and not only does it so much more than those two systems, but also the games which are of a similar quality are so much cheaper. The same game for PlayStation Vita is currently £24.99 at Amazon and the PSP version is £15.49. Of course those versions were released back in November 2011, though were more expensive then too. Is the £2.99 price point on the iTunes App Store sustainable? No idea.
If you like using your iPad for games (in the main casual gaming) then you may be interested in the following apps. Electronic Arts are having an iPad Game Sale this weekend, so some of these are cheap today.
With over a hundred games and many different combinations, if you enjoy Solitaire card games then get this app. As well as traditional favorites such as Freecell, there are many different weird and wonderful variants. I particularly enjoy the challenge of Lucas or Forty Thieves.
Based on the dice game, this challenging word game is perfect for those few minutes while waiting for a train or a programme to start on the TV. Sixteen letters on the board and you need to make as many words as possible only using the letters and ensuring that are in order too. Like Facebook there are combinations in the results that I am sure are not real words!
I don’t play games that often on my iPad and those that I do are often word games such as Boggle or Scrabble. I also like card games and Mondo Solitaire is a fantastic app with all the versions of Solitaire that you can think of.
Though I have bought a few other arcade types, one that my family really enjoyed was Lego Harry Potter.
Play as Harry, Ron, Hermione and many more as you explore Hogwarts and engage in countless hours of gameplay spread across 40+ levels based on the Harry Potter books and movies. LEGO® Harry Potter™: Years 1-4 brings the world of LEGO® Harry Potter to life on the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad, giving gamers the power to play with LEGO characters and models in a brand new way. Based on the first four Harry Potter books and movies, LEGO® Harry Potter: Years 1-4 builds on the foundations of previous LEGO® video games by offering a mix of fun, accessible gameplay and light-hearted humor – appealing to all ages. Players can explore the wizarding world and feel as though they are at Hogwarts.
In celebration of the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows- Part 2, LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 is only £1.99 which compared to the cost of console versions and PSP versions is really really really cheap! This is really good value for what is a compelling and fun game. That is key, though only £1.99 this is a great game that you can spend hours playing.
What Lego have done with their games is add a tongue in cheek element to the films they have made games of and as a result if you know the films you can smile at the little jokes that are interspersed in the little clips included in the game. So a perfect combination if you like Lego and Harry Potter.
The game itself covers the first four books/films of the Harry Potter universe and you start in Privet Drive before finally fighting you know who at the end of the Goblet of Fire.
As with many Lego games (those on the PSP, PS3 etc) the game is a combination of puzzles, logic and, in the case of Harry Potter casting spells.
What surprised me was how much all members of the family enjoyed the game and how quickly they picked it up. The controls work well within the touch interface and simple to use.
I do like the fact that Apple have made this a universal app so it works on the iPod touch, the iPhone and the iPad. Personally I think as a game it works better on the iPad because of the bigger screen.
I know that my family are awaiting the next installment of Harry Potter for the iPad and would also like to see other Lego style games too. We’ll have to wait and see, in the meantime why not try playing this excellent Lego game.
Update: Price has now gone back to £2.99 still excellent value for money.