Harry Potter has come to Hogwarts. Er, I mean Kinect.
If you’ve ever longed for the ability to live Harry Potter’s 7-year, 8-film journey, then have I got a game for you.
Sometime this Fall, Warner Bros. Interactive and Eurocom are releasing Harry Potter for Kinect, a retelling of the iconic character’s life story, where you get to wear those circle-y glasses. Or, if you prefer, you can have your Kinect sensor scan your face, and then put your likeness right into the game. (I hope this gets tweaked before the final release; in the trailer above, the girl who scans herself into the game gets an avatar that looks like it’s had about five facelifts.)
Something else you may notice, via the screenshot above: scenes from the first two films featuring Professor Dumbledore have been retconned. The likeness of actor Richard Harris, who portrayed Dumbledore in the first two movies, is gone. Instead, the likeness of actor Michael Gambon, who took over the role after Harris passed away, is apparently used for the entire game. Purists will hate this departure from film canon, but it’s understandable from a technical perspective. On the other hand, if the game uses audio clips of the actors’ dialogue from the movies, it’ll be awfully weird to hear Harris’ voice come out of Gambon’s mouth.
In the game, you’ll play along to all of the biggest and most memorable moments from all eight Harry Potter films, using nothing but gesture controls. While Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II – The Video Game offered Kinect-ability, it didn’t exactly garner loads of accolades. WBIE hopes to get the formula right this time, by using a combination of motion and voice controls to let players cast spells via gestures and speaking the Latin spell word, fly broomsticks, duel other wizards, and more.
WBIE hopes that this kid-targeted title will appeal to family members of all ages, since you’ll be able to play through the entire Harry Potter story, from his visit at Ollivanders to purchase his wand, all the way to his final showdown against Voldemort. The game will also allow players to team up in co-op and participate in minigames.
Here’s hoping the whole title isn’t just one big string of minigames. (Did the Wii teach us nothing, people?)