Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Computer Game)
Windows XP / ME / 2000 / 98 / 95
266 MHz Intel Pentium II or AMD K6-2 processor (400 MHz or faster processor recommended); 64 MB RAM (128 MB recommended); 4x CD/DVD-ROM drive (8x recommended); 500 MB free hard disk space plus space for saved games; 8MB video card with DirectX 8.0 compatible driver (32 MB or greater supported Direct3D capable video card recommended); Keyboard; Mouse.
Explore a virtual Hogwarts, attend lessons with Ron and Hermione, collect Bertie Botts All Flavor Beans and Chocolate Frogs, zoom around on your Nimbus 2000, winning points for Gryffindor by capturing the snitch at a quidditch match - and even come face to face with “You Know Who” in this action adventure game great for Harry Potter fans young and old.
Become Harry Potter as he enters Hogwarts for his first year at the School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Interact with his friends, Ron, Hermione, and Hagrid, and clash with Draco, Crabbe and Goyle. Attend classes and learn magic spells (by becoming proficient at tracing different shapes with your magic wand). Then with wand in hand, run, jump, and climb as you explore the school and grounds, collecting Bertie Botts All Flavor Beans (useful for trading with Fred and George Weasley for helpful hints and advice) and Chocolate Frogs (to keep your strength up), Wizard cards, and house points for Gryffindor. You’ll learn to fly your new Nimbus 2000, and even play quidditch – which is quite fun, but takes a lot of practice. A nice feature is that you can practice flying and play quidditch whenever you like, not just when it occurs in the story line (helpful for me, as I obviously am not a natural like the “real” Harry Potter). And on your quest for the sorcerer’s stone, you’ll even have a final showdown with “You-Know-Who.” The game follows the story line of the book pretty closely, including things that were even absent in the movie (like the potions test on the way to retrieve the sorcerer’s stone). All along the way, you encounter interesting creatures, which try to thwart you in your explorations – if you’re quick enough you can cast spells to incapacitate them, and if you’re not quick enough they can sap all of your energy/strength, and you “faint.” It’s nice that you never “die,” you just “faint” – even when you misjudge the jumping distance over a yawning chasm and fall into the darkness below! <p>The graphics are pretty good – there are lots of atmospheric details, and the animation is, for the most part, smooth and exciting – especially the flying. The characters look like the actors from the movie, but they are rather blocky (especially giant Hagrid) and their mouths don’t move when they are speaking. This and the fact that the paintings on the walls of Hogwarts don’t move are minor quibbles, though. A more serious drawback is that this PC version appears to be an adaptation of a console-type game, so that you can only save the game at certain, pre-determined points (as opposed to whenever you want to), and the keyboard controls are a bit awkward and a challenge to master – but hey, that’s part of the fun. Fans young and old of Rowling’s magical world will enjoy leaving the muggle realm behind, and exploring Hogwarts along with Harry in this action adventure game.
ESRB rating : E for Everyone (not saving)