LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 Review

By , on November 21, 2010

LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4
  • Publisher: Warner Bros.
  • Genre: Family
  • Released: 19 Nov, 2010
  • Size: 453.7 MB
  • Price: $4.99
Download on the AppStore
5 out of 5


  • Simple, all-ages friendly gameplay.
  • Additional puzzles in the place of larger levels.
  • A bonanza of extras for compulsive gamers.


  • Awkward movement controls.
  • Long menu loading times.


While the lack of suitable controls can prove to be bothersome, it doesn't take away from the game's otherwise simple and compelling gameplay.

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It's hard not to have been infected with Potter-fever over the last decade and while it's not a universally loved franchise, there is certainly enough fandom to justify the pairing with LEGO's popular game series. Matching the two is a recipe for obsessive compulsive gaming that stretches generations and even if you've played the title on other consoles you're likely to lose just as much time on this release.

But first lets address the elephant in the corner, the controls; in particular, the movement controls. Players can ambulate around the screens in one of two methods, either tapping to set way-points for your character or holding down your finger to drag them around as if on an elastic tether. Both methods feel rough and unsuited to iDevices as fine movement with way-points is impossible and holding down your finger obscures most of the screen. Outside of movement, the controls are surprisingly well adapted and help to absorb players in to the world of Harry Potter as you fling spells with flicks, swipes and other gestures unique to each character and situation.

As the title suggests you'll follow Harry through the first four novels, beginning with classes to teach you the basics and ending as a competitor in the Triwizard Tournament. Each area in the game is carefully rendered with iconic features highlighted in the novels and films and once an area is completed players can come back in 'Free-play' modes to collect additional bonuses such as unique spells, new characters and costumes to customize them with.

Despite its control flaws, LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 is a refined application of the LEGO game franchise and an apt conversion of the lore of Harry Potter. Young or old, fans of the novels should not miss an opportunity like this.


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