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LEGO Harry Potter Years 1-4

LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4

Video Game Cat Review

Date of Review: August 3, 2012
Format Reviewed: Xbox 360
Language / Country of Origin: English / USA
Online Capability: None.
Prequels:  Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Harry Potter: Quidditch World Cup, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1.
Sequels:
  Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, LEGO Harry Potter: Years 5-7.
Equipment Needed: Xbox 360 and controller
Maintenance Required: None required.

Review:
There has been no shortage of LEGO games that have come out based on movies – some hits, others misses. This first Harry Potter version is one of the “hits”. In fact, I dare say it’s the best LEGO game of them all.

Because this game spans multiple books, the gameplay is similarly broken down by each school year at Hogwarts (four years, six chapters per year). You are required to play as the original character(s) involved in the scene on your first go-round, but once you unlock the level in Free Play, you can go back with other characters in order to work your magic on the various secrets. The levels and cut scenes all fairly true to the Harry Potter storyline, just with a few charming updates and everything being of a LEGO likeness.

In addition to the awesome levels, what really makes this Harry Potter LEGO game a winner is all of the extra content that it’s brimming with. There are Red Bricks, Gold Bricks and House Crests to find, Students in Peril to rescue and countless characters to unlock and purchase. There are also fun puzzle levels at Gringotts Bank to contend with and True Wizard status to shoot for on every level.

Plot:
Follows the happenings in the first four Harry Potter books. Bosses are based off of the villains you read about in each sequel.

Gameplay:
Like in all the other LEGO games, one of the most amusing parts of playing is getting to smash LEGO structures to smithereens. New to this edition is the ability to cast spells that allow Harry and friends to move furniture, cut vines and so forth.

Cultural / Historical Value:
It’s Harry Potter. Need I say more?

Teaching / Learning Characteristics:
Light puzzling action is involved in each of the stages. Two people can play in co-op and work together to solve a level’s challenges.

Replay Value:
Immense. Each level requires multiple playthroughs if you’re going for that coveted 100 percent completion.

Likely Audiences:
Any Harry Potter or LEGO game fan.

Overall Score:

90/100

Other Reviews:
1up.com
Gamerankings
Gamespot
Metacritic
MobyGames

Awards

Award Giver Category Verdict
Spike Video Game Awards 2010Best Adapted Video Game Nominee
GAME British Academy Video Game Awards 2011Family Nominee
Interactive Achievement Awards 2011Family Game of the Year Nominee
GAME British Academy Video Game Awards 2011Handheld Nominee

Additional Info

ESRB Description:
Cartoon Violence, Crude Humor

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