Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 Review
Xbox 360 | PS3 | Wii
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 Box Art
System: Wii, PS3, X360
Dev: Bright Light
Pub: Electronic Arts
Release: November 16, 2010
Players: 1
Screen Resolution: 480p Fantasy Violence

The story elements are handled competently as well. Cutscenes and dialogue with Harry's friends break up the action sequences, and despite the weird jargon, even those who aren't familiar with the Potter tale will find the basic outline of the story easy to follow. It's not as vivid or detailed as the movie or books, of course, and purists will be annoyed at the loose way the plot follows J.K. Rowling's original, but the developers managed to make the story not feel like an afterthought.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 Screenshot

The prerendered graphics in the cutscenes are good for the Wii, but the in-game visuals are sparse, with bare-bones textures, too little detail, and mediocre animations. Also, the level design can be repetitive -- for example, in the aforementioned dragon level, you have to avoid the dragon in one cave after another by hiding behind columns -- and the lack of detail can make it easy to get turned around. Worst of all, the slowdown is absolutely horrific when lots of enemies are on the screen; one time, we actually thought our Wii was malfunctioning.

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The sound has its good and bad points. The voice acting is good (especially if you find English accents as amusing as we do), but the repetitive dialogue samples can get irritating, especially when you have a whole group of people yelling out "Stupefy!" at random intervals. However, the sound effects make you feel like you're in the movie, and the music evokes the mood of the franchise.

Developers Bright Light deserves some credit for taking on a daunting project; one can only imagine how hard it is to turn Harry Potter into a third-person shooter. Unfortunately, while they succeeded in putting out a product with the Harry Potter name on it in time for Christmas, they failed to make that product a good buy. The gameplay here is just too awkward, too glitchy, and too bland to make this a good use of money or time.

By Robert VerBruggen
CCC Freelance Writer

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
2.5
Graphics
The prerendered cutscenes look all right, but the in-game visuals aren't impressive, and there's some of the worst slowdown we've ever seen.
2.2
Control
The Wii-mote controls are very clunky, with slow turning, an awful camera, and a wonky cover system.
4.0
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
Some voice samples play too many times, but otherwise the sound is fine.
2.5
Play Value
This game feels like a preliminary build rather than a finished game, and it's unenjoyable as a result.
2.5
Overall Rating - Average
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.
Review Rating Legend
0.1 - 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 3.5 - 3.9 = Good 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair 4.0 - 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • The wand is the ultimate weapon. Hold nothing back! Unleash an arsenal of formidable magic to defeat attackers, protect yourself from harm, and evade capture.
  • Deadly enemies lurk around every corner. Fight Voldemort's minions, including Death Eaters, Snatchers, and Dementors. Overcome a host of fierce creatures attacking on instinct alone. No other Harry Potter game has had this level of action!
  • Become a master in stealth. Use the Invisibility Cloak, Polyjuice Potion, and Peruvian Instant Darkness Powder to avoid detection and sneak past adversaries.
  • Unique cover mechanics. Use magic to create and wield cover. Throw your cover at enemies, turning defense into attack.
  • Powerful potions. Find potions that can be used to attack, escape, restore health, or increase your luck.

  • Screenshots / Images
    Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 Screenshot - click to enlarge Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 Screenshot - click to enlarge Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 Screenshot - click to enlarge Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 Screenshot - click to enlarge Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 Screenshot - click to enlarge Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 Screenshot - click to enlarge Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 Screenshot - click to enlarge Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 Screenshot - click to enlarge Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 Screenshot - click to enlarge Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 Screenshot - click to enlarge

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