Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone - PC

Also known as: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

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Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (PC)
Also for: Power Mac, GBA, PlayStation, Game Boy Color
Viewed: 3D Third-person, floating camera Genre:
Media: CD Arcade origin:No
Developer: KnowWonder Soft. Co.: Electronic Arts
Publishers: Electronic Arts (GB)
Released: 16 Nov 2001 (GB)
Ratings: 3+
Accessories: Control Pad


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Harry Potter, possibly one of the most hyped franchises of 2001, has not only made the transition to the big screen. The inevitable video game tie-in, Harry Potter: The Philosopher’s Stone, is here.

The PC version in particular is far more advanced than its PlayStation counterpart. The textures are smoother and more detailed, and while this may be looked upon purely as eye candy, the improved visuals help to immerse the player in a much more involving and atmospheric experience.

Beginning the game from scratch, The Philosopher’s Stone will take its players through what can only be described as a training level. Here, you will have the chance to familiarise yourself with the lead characters of the game and become accustomed to the game’s simple controls. You will learn how to run, jump and climb, as well as mastering your wand techniques. Soon after you begin the game proper, you will realise just how useful this compulsory training mode actually is. Before long you will find yourself battling with magic against a plethora of strange-looking, hostile creatures. But there are plenty of puzzles to be solved here, some are deceptively simple, while others are fiendishly difficult. But it’s all part of the Harry Potter experience, isn’t it?

The control method is intuitive, and employs a style similar to Zelda 64 and Tomb Raider, whereby certain frequently used actions become automatic, such as climbing walls and jumping platforms. However, without some kind of third party controller, The Philosopher’s Stone is a little awkward when compared to the PlayStation version. A PC control pad is well worth the extra money if you don’t already own one. You don’t want to miss out, do you?

There is no doubt that Electronic Arts has given the design of this game a lot of thought. The game is appealing to all ages and it offers a challenge to suit everyone. It’s a magical experience, but you don't need me to tell you that.