If you’re a big fan of the Harry Potter series, or perhaps just interested in the ever-increasing capabilities of the Playstation Move system, “Wonderbook: Book of Spells” is for you. To put it simply, “Wonderbook” places you in the shoes of a Hogwarts student, but instead of wandering around aimlessly or dealing with needless confrontation, you’ll be learning and using 20 of the actual spells from the movies.
But before we get too far into that, I’d better explain what makes this game so special. As previously mentioned, “Book of Spells” utilizes the Playstation Move system and controller; in effect, it allows you to interact directly with the onscreen action, casting crazy spells and so forth. While it might sound like a dream come true to some of the more die-hard Potter fans (and don’t get me wrong, it is extremely “cool”) the game itself could have been so much more engrossing than it is.
“Wonderbook” is a real graphical treat, there’s no disputing that. The manner in which players are able to blend reality with the fiction on-screen is nothing short of magical (if you’ll pardon the pun). All of the backgrounds / environments are lucid-looking and true to the art style of the franchise, as are the visual effects and strange creatures you’ll summon, create and battle.
Needless to say, by the time you’re finished with this title, you’ll probably feel like you’ve had a genuine experience with magic. It’s very easy to get sucked in by the gameplay, mostly due to the fact that they’ve done such an amazing job of bringing spell casting to life right before your eyes.
After you choose your wand type, you’ll begin learning to cast spells. The game is divided into 5 chapters, each one containing a few learned spells as well as a “test” to deal with that just so happens to incorporate the knowledge you’ve accumulated. As far as immersion is concerned, this title is one of those games that can completely pull you in, especially if you’re already familiar with aspects of the series.
In terms of quips and quibbles; there isn’t much replay value attached to this game, and the ending leaves something to be desired. At the end of the day however, this title serves its purpose well and doesn’t attempt to step outside of its boundaries. All in all, this game does an excellent job of catering to its core audience, which is primarily children and the younger gamer. Does this mean that adults won’t also enjoy it? Absolutely not…whether you’re a parent, who’s playing this alongside your little one, or simply an older potter fan that’s hopelessly addicted to the magic of the movie series, you’ll find that this is a really fun gaming experience.