Review by Shadow Edge
"Easily the best HP game ever."
Okay now... I've read all the books, watched the movies, and I was a tad bit disappointed with the games. They're too kiddish, especially in the GBA HP games with a get-me-this-and-that style of game. But the GBC version of HP CoS is different from them, and it's the best HP game ever.
The graphics had an excellent refurbishing in this game. The sprites have more and better details than the last, so Harry and other character won't look like a freak. EA used more colors here, so it looks better to the eyes. The environment is much, much more detailed, and of course, used more colors too to make it look realistic. EA did seem to have pushed GBC's capabilities to the limits.
The menu on the combat uses icons now, so it looks sooo sweet.
The sounds are greatly improved. In the previous HP game, sounds were too bassy. They were also too loud, annoying, repetitive and had a very low-quality that would have made you think EA composed that on the 5AM of the day till HP SS was released. Anyways, in this installment, the sounds have more variety. It also fits the atmosphere in the game. It isn't too much repetitive than the last nor too bassy either. The quality had also been greatly improved. It makes gaming experience much more exciting.
Gameplay... there isn't any better word than it.... cool. It certainly is the best. It may be similar to the previous HP game but here goes...
Exploration is similar but with improvements. Walking doesn't feel too bulky anymore. There are more secrets in the game that you can uncover. Secret Famous Witch and Wizards cards are scattered everywhere on the castle. Though a shop sells cards, the secret cards are special because they won't "expire" (see below). The castle is HUGE, tons of exploration needed. There are some shortcuts hidden too. So you'll be spending weeks searching for secret cards and areas.
There are shops here too. One sells equipment and one sells items. As you progress in the game, their inventory gets better and better. The latest items' prices may be too extreme for you once they make appearance on the shop's list.
Combat system may be familiar. Now, you can use characters besides Harry. You have a small number of spells you can use, and it increases by finishing certain tasks or events in the game. The combat menu looks better because it uses graphics now. The spells have three levels: Uno, Duo, Tria. The higher the level, the stronger the spell and the more MP it consumes. Your spells gains a stronger level once you attain a certain level or use it on a certain number of times. Characters have special abilities too. Harry can use card combos by using up a combination of three cards. Special cards won't kiss you goodbye, unlike ordinary ones. Ron can use Scabbers against enemies for several effects. Hermione can give your other members a lecture to improve certain stats. Also, one helpful spell everyone has is Informus. It can analyze your enemy to get information such as vulnerability, tolerance, etc. that would be put in your Folio Bruti so you can plan battles better.
The game starts off hard, mainly because you have too low SP (Stamina Points) and MP (Mana Points). Every spell requires MP except for Flipendo Uno. But as the game progresses, it starts getting easier. You can even breeze through the final bosses.
The story is of course taken from the books. It has been slightly changed to make it fit for gameplay. It goes on smoothly too. There isn't any major changes on the story, just some minor ones.
The controls are the standard ones used on Gameboy Color. It didn't change the slightest.
Replaying is good, but not excellent. You can unlock mini-games like Quidditch by finishing certain events. I really like Quidditch here because you won't have to go through speed rings of the Snitch. You just catch it. There are Beaters that beat the Bludgers at you or your enemy. And of course, there's the opposing Seeker which tries to catch the Snitch before you. This is very exciting.
I rate this game 'Excellent'. This game is truly worth buying off stores. You'll be spending days (or even weeks) of fun playing this HUGE game.
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 08/02/04
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