Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Pt. 1

6.0 Overall Score

Written by on December 23, 2010 in

The Harry Potter franchise is one of the most profitable franchises of all time. Of course we are all familiar with the novels, but there are also the movies and the video games which are also very popular.  As with all Harry Potter movie releases, a video game comes in tow and The Deathly Hallows pt.1 is no different.  The movie was just released in theaters a few weeks ago and has received great reviews, labeling it as the best movie in the series so far, but what about the video game? Can we assume that it is also the best in the series? Read on to find out.

OVERVIEW

The last couple Harry Potter games had a unique setting which made the games very interesting and magical, Hogwarts. In those games, you were given complete freedom to explore Hogwarts to your heart’s content.  Those who have read the book or have seen the movie know that times have changed in the world of Harry Potter so much so that Hogwarts is no longer the setting.  Without Hogwarts as a free roaming location, Deathly Hallows pt.1 is set up with levels instead of being free roam.  Being that the game is set up with levels this time around, more emphasis had to be put on combat, wand combat that is.  Overall, the changes the developer has made on the series work pretty well, but sometimes comes off very linear and  repetitive.

STORY

Since Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows pt.1 is based off a movie which is based off a book, I don’t think I should reveal too much as to avoid spoilers.  As a brief summery, the dark lord, Voldemort, who has been a mysterious threat throughout the series, has finally taken power over the wizarding world and is in search of 3 items, the deathly hallows. Voldemort wants these hallows because when these 3 items are combined it will make the owner master of death and invincible.  Meanwhile, Harry is on his quest with Ron and Herminone to destroy the 7 horcruxes of Voldemort in order to destroy him.

Whew! Complicated, I know.  I hope it makes sense, I did the best I could.  If you want to know more of the plot, I recommend that you go read the book or see the movie because by just playing the game, you will be confused as it doesn’t do a good  job explaining all the complexities of this story.

GAMEPLAY

As I mentioned in the overview, Deathly Hallows pt.1 is a game that is set up with levels rather than the traditional free roam found in previous Harry Potter games.  This level system works well for the most part as it creates a more action pact game.  Action is exactly what this game is about as it’s set in a 3rd person perspective and feels a lot like Gears of War.  Yes, there is wand combat, but instead of feeling like magic, the spells you use make the game feel like a shooter, for instance, your main spell, “stupify” acts like a machine gun. I kid you not.  The end result is actually pretty fun, but my main complaint is that there are only about 6 different level designs that get recycled over and over again which makes the game very repetitive.

VISUALS

Usually with movie licensed games, the graphics tend to be a low point, but with Deathly Hallows pt.1, they are actually quite good.  All the character models are pretty impressive and actually resemble the actors.  The details on the levels are also pretty good and have great lighting that seems to be on par with current games in this generation.  The game won’t win any awards in its visuals, but they won’t distract from the gameplay, either, and that’s what’s important.

KINECT

Although not a Kinect only game, Deathly Hallows pt.1 does use the Kinect device in one of its features. I have to admit: it’s pretty fun! Using the same levels as seen in the main game, the Kinect feature works as an “on rails” shooter that resembles House of the Dead.  You have no control of where you move, but by waving your arms in different ways, you will be casting different spells to defeat your enemies.  The best part about this feature, though, is the option to play co-op with a friend or family member.  There are not that many levels offered here, but the experience is very fun and satisfying, any fan of Harry Potter will love it.

ACHIEVEMENTS

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows pt. 1 has a total of 49 achievements that make for a total of 1000 gamerscore.  The first thing that you need to be aware of if you are going for the full 1000 is that you will need to have the Kinect device as there are achievements related to using that feature. Other than that, the game’s achievements are actually quite easy, but still might take a while to fully complete.  In order to get all the points, you will need to play through the game 3 times on the 3 different difficulties as they do not stack.  Each play through takes roughly 3-4 hours making for a minimum of 9-12 hours to complete the game fully, but it will probably end up taking 15 hours realistically. As if 3 playthroughs wasn’t bad enough, there are collectibles to worry about as well, but luckily they are not that hard to find with a guide by your side. There are some challenges that you need to get gold on, but they are not hard so don’t worry about them. The Kinect related achievements will require you to play all the Kinect missions including the local co-op missions. These missions are pretty short and should only take about an hour to complete them all. Overall, the achievements for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows pt.1 are really easy, but are kind of annoying as you have to be concerned with collectibles as well as play through the game 3 times. As long as you have patience, this game will pose no trouble on your path to completion.

CLOSING THOUGHTS and SCORE

Ever since the first Harry Potter movie release, there has been a video game released as well. Over the years, the games have changed a lot, but the biggest change is in Deathly Hallows pt. 1, moving the series into a 3rd person shooter clone. The result is not bad and at times it’s quite enjoyable, but I can’t help but feel that the game has so much more potential than what is offered here. I’m glad to see that the developers took a risk by creating a feature designed for the Kinect, it’s a great addition to the game and I hope that we see the Kinect supported like this in future games. Traditionally, movie licensed games are not recieved very well by critics, but in the case of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows pt. 1, I think the developers did a good job in capturing the feel of the film and making a pretty solid game. In the end though, the game is forgettable and is not worth buying unless you are a die hard Potter fan which we know there is plenty of.

A copy of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Pt.1 was provided to The Married Gamers for the purpose of evaluation and review.

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Author: Miles Messenger View all posts by
I'm a 28 year old guy who enjoys all things gaming. I am married to a wonderful woman who is working on a career as a published author and I'm so proud of her for all that she's accomplished. For my day job, I am a supervisor at a Home Warranty company. It's not the greatest job, but it brings in the bacon.

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