Harry Potter & the Philosopher’s Stone
Released in May 2002 Nintendo’s GameCube missed out on a version of the Philosopher’s Stone by just a few months. And although we’ve already seen The Chamber of Secrets make a GameCube appearance some remained hopeful of a release of the first game. Well it’s taken two years but Philosopher’s Stone has finally come to Nintendo’s console. But not all is as you may remember it…
Though the Philosopher’s Stone is noticeably similar to its older counterparts there are several major differences in the GameCube outing that make for a bigger better Harry Potter adventure. Where the first game featured a relatively limited rendition Hogwarts school for the magically gifted this all-new update takes environments from the Chamber of Secrets offering for a much more convincing and expansive adventure. Rooms that were strangely locked in original are now available for exploration.
Another welcome improvement to the adventure is reduced loading times. Where the 2001 original struggled to keep gameplay flowing because of unwelcome loading screens the 2003 edition has been designed so the game suffers only minor pauses between scenes. Finally Warthog has also taken the time to improve the game’s cut-scenes. FMV is now far more detailed and it generally makes the Harry Potter experience that little bit more immersive.
The Philosopher’s Stone’s intuitive control method remains intact for the GameCube offering and employs a style similar to Zelda 64 whereby certain frequently used actions become automatic such as climbing walls and jumping platforms. And because of this the GameCube controller is an ideal means to control the young wizard.
A great update to an EA classic? Absolutely.——
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