Harry is back. Older, wiser and more bad-ass. Maturing with its audience, the video game for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 is a dark change to the series, mirroring games like Gears of War and Dead Space to convey that Hogwarts is at war and all rules are off.
Branching away from its light-hearted platforming roots, Deathly Hallows is a full fledged cover based third person shooter. Harry’s circumstances have changed drastically this time around. After being exiled from Hogwarts and on the run from Voldemort’s dark influence on the wizard world, Harry is in desperate times. All he can do is fight back with everything he’s got. And he’s got quite an arsenal.
Each spell at Harry’s disposal is very much an equivalent to any weapon in a third person shooter, but with some twists. Stupefy acts as Harry’s pistol, damaging enemies with single shots and reliable accuracy. Getting to the big guns, spells like confringo and expelliarmus act as a rocket launcher and shotgun, respectfully. Other spells like confundo are non-lethal spells that turns the target against their allies to disarray their tactics.
Harry’s spell repertoire add a good sense of variety to the combat, but pausing the combat to switch spells on the fly needs some work to obtain that seamless feel to the combat. The heads-up display is at a bare minimum like in the title Dead Space to add immersion in the game world, but the camera movement feels disconnected to the player and can create some problems in combat. The developer still has some time to iron out these quips before the film’s release in November, but other than that, the game is looking to be an interesting and welcome change to the series. Harry’s fight against Voldemort will not go out without a confringo.
Originally published on June 19, 2010 @ StudentVoiceOnline.com