LEGO Harry Potter: Year 1-4
Platforms: Literally all of them
In this installment of LEGO Harry Potter, we follow the first four adventures of Harry Potter. In the LEGO world, we get to experience the wonder of The Philosopher’s Stone, the secrets of The Chamber of Secrets, the terror of The Prisoner of Azkaban, and the excitement of The Goblet of Fire!
If you are looking for a good description of the main characters in an individual year, go check out our book or movie reviews. This game provides nearly no character information, but the characters are all present in different years of the books.
So, I know you look at this rating and might say is that a bit high for a Lego game? Well if you have been reading our reviews for a while you may notice my reviews for anything Harry Potter is biased slightly. The books and movies were such a huge part of my childhood and this game was right there with them. The game follows the story of the Harry Potter series exactly with elements from both the books and movies though way less dark in terms of tone compared to the original source material. The characters are all the same as well except for the fact that they can’t talk and so it’s hard to get as much as a feel for them. Now in terms of gameplay it’s quite simple, where you well use spells to solves puzzles, brew potions and fight enemies. The only problem is that this game is 11 years old and while this is a remaster it still has all the glitches from the original to the point that one level could not be completed because of a glitch and you had to go back and watch cutscenes to fix it. To play this game and not know the prior story would be quite hard as the game heavily relies on your previous knowledge because there is no dialogue and everything is explained using grunts and characters pointing at things. Everyone I have played this with has a good time laughing at some of the changes that were made to make it more kid friendly and they will make you chuckle. In my opinion the best part of this game is casting spells and just roaming Hogwarts as both are well developed. Hogwarts is huge and there is so much to explore with so much detail and I appreciate that. The spells and how you use them are also super cool and entertaining. So I don’t know what to say but I love this game and yes it is partially due to nostalgia.
All in all this is a fantastic game filled with fun moments, cool moments and a heap load of charm that made this a fun one to revisit.
Favourite Moment (Spoilers):
My favourite moment is actually just exploring Hogwarts because the detail and easter eggs are cool. I also appreciate just how big the scale of the castle and grounds are.
Lego Harry Potter: Years 1-4 is one of the best Lego games I have played to date. The size of the world is remarkable for the times, and I thought it was awesome to be able to explore a good portion of Hogwarts. I enjoyed the open-world direction they took with this game, instead of the usual level-by-level game. The animation behind this game is pretty good, and outside of some glitches, it plays really smoothly. Years 1-4 are really quick to play through but they capture the books in a great format. It’s a lot more fun to play two-player, but that lego split-screen will always bother me. Why have a max separation setting? Regardless, the different spells are pretty cool.
This game took us around 6 hours to complete, but It was a lot of fun. If you want to complete everything, it’s going to take a lot longer than 6 hours, but the main story was pretty darn fun. Running around, randomly breaking objects in hopes of finding the way to complete the level never loses its charm. This game is more than due for a remaster though, a dialogue would go a long way towards having details about characters, and less assuming things due to past knowledge. Because of that, this game is really enjoyable if you know Harry Potter, but if you have no previous knowledge nothing is going to make sense. Even some subtitles would have gone a long way because everything is implied. From characters to plot, if you haven’t read/seen Harry Potter you need to go do that first.
I enjoyed this game, and it’s a quick game to play-through. There’s a ton of content after the main four years in the free play section, and I think it would take a good chunk of time to complete the game 100%. It’s a ton of fun to play, but if you don’t understand Harry Potter don’t play this game.
Favourite Moment (Spoilers):
My favourite moment in this game has to be learning the different spells. They are all unique, and the day-to-day moments are what makes Hogwarts so cool. That small window into what it would be like to go to Hogwarts is a lot better than a cut scene would have been.
The LEGO series of games has always been fun back in my childhood. I remember playing LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Collection on both my DS and my Wii. For LEGO Harry Potter, we played a remastered version on the Nintendo Switch. Originally released 11 years ago, this game definitely showed its age.
As usual, we shall start with the negatives. First off, if you’ve never touched the Harry Potter franchise before, this game will make no sense to you. For one, the story is told by non-verbal cutscenes, where some creative liberties were taken to fit the rating. For those unfamiliar with the series, these cutscenes are meaningless. So, to enjoy the story, you have to have some sort of prior knowledge. Alongside a choppy story, this game also features bugs and glitches found in previous renditions. There’s a mission found in Year 3 that can be glitched to prevent progress.
On the plus side, this was a LEGO game, which means there is plenty of destruction and building. The main charm of the LEGO games has always been the replay ability through Free Play. The game also features some great scores that bring the world of Harry Potter to life. Besides some of the glitches, the game is relatively easy and fun to enjoy. However, there are some areas where you might be lost.Overall, this was a solid LEGO game. It has all the charms of others in the series, but you’ll need prior knowledge to enjoy the story.
Favourite Moment (Spoilers):
My favourite moment in the game was the boss battle against Malfoy during the Hogsmeade section of The Prisoner of Azkaban. The sheer absurdity and overall comedic tone of the fight was the most fun I had while playing. It also helped that the whole Hogsmeade section was ludicrous as a whole. Those who have read the book would know.