Inside Pottermore   Leave a comment

At the moment, the site has been down for about an hour or so.  Now that it is back, I can’t seem to brew any potion.  It’s not a big deal as I understand that it is still on beta stage.  What irritates me though is that I can’t contribute to the house points and after moving from 2000th place, I’m almost about to reach 1000th, I will slip down the ladder again.

In the meantime, while I am unable to brew potions, I’ll just write about my thoughts on Pottermore.

Firstly, I need to get this out of my system – it’s just great! It isn’t perfect but I love it.  And I maybe speaking on a biased point of view because I doubt there would be anything about Harry Potter and his world that I would never like. So there, I got it out. This was definitely worth the wait.  I felt I reached rock bottom when my Welcome Email did not arrive last Thursday.  Getting it on a Friday night was even better.  I’ve got all weekend to enjoy the site – though now, it’s not working quite right. But that’s beside the point.  When it was working well, I am simply enchanted.

The graphics is just amazing.  The detail that was put into each and every moment in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone is just top notch. It’s exactly the way I imagined Diagon Alley and Hogwarts, as well as Harry’s cupboard under the stairs. There is something in that cupboard though that I know I have yet to discover.

The additional information that JK Rowling did not include in the books are such a welcome treat.  It’s like we already have a cake in the form of the seven novels, and now we get to have an ice cream to top it off.  I think I had tears threatening to fall when I read Professor McGonagall’s background story. The wandlore is definitely one of my favorite new information that JK Rowling provided.  Unfortunately, I can’t seem to be satisfied just yet.  There’s still a lot I want to know. I hoped there will be more information about the students, the professors and of course, our Houses.

So let’s get to the items I wished they could improve on.

First on my list is the background music and sound effect.  It will add more feeling and depth to the story.  It may be distracting for some, but it can have an on/off option if they prefer not to have it.

Potions is great.  It is a bit hard at the beginning but after a few practice rounds, I finally got the hang of it.  However, we’ll have to purchase the ingredients and when we burn the cauldrons, we need to buy new ones.  Now, that is a bit tricky.  It is not easy to brew the potions, especially the complicated ones.  One would probably burn more than a cauldron or two.  And we only get 500 galleons.  We can get additional galleons as we proceed with each chapter but once we got them all, we no longer have a way to earn them anymore.  On the Help site, it says, once we used up all the galleons, the next allowance will be provided on the next term – when Chamber of Secrets is out.  I don’t know if Harry, Ron and Hermione bought their ingredients before.  I knew they bought the cauldrons and the supplies they will need but I always thought that the ingredients all came from the student cupboard.  And if we use up the galleons way before Chamber of Secrets, there is nothing else left to do except Wizard Duel – which by the way, has never worked properly.  So I think they should either lower the prices or give us more galleons.  The timer for making the potions is also quite fast.  I wish they could allow more timeframe for that.  I can understand that brewing can take at least an hour but 1 or 2 minutes to concoct the potion before it brews is just frustrating. It’s like there’s a tick tock ringing in my ears every time.

Wizard Duel – I have never been able to duel at all.  It has, since my entrance, been under system maintenance.  So I guess, I can hardly comment on this except that hopefully it will work so that we can finally see how it goes.  I’ve tried the practice rounds and so far, I’ve no problems with that.  Maybe this is a bit more complicated as this involves two players.

Unfortunately, we can only do Potions and Wizard Duel.  I was really looking forward to Transfiguration and Charms.  Now that I think of it, it would also be cool if they have Herbology and Care of Magical Creatures.  The PC-DVD, PS2 Games and even mobile games has these subjects.  So I am quite confident that they can include more interactive games based on the subjects and some tasks that we can do to earn more house points.  And I was so looking forward to Quidditch.  I hate to admit that I am quite disappointed that the most significant detail that defined Harry’s world is excluded.  Oh sure! We had a chance to catch a snitch.  But it’s just the snitch moving and it’s not really hard to catch.  The Wizard Chess would also be a wonderful addition and Gobstones too.

Now that we have also been sorted into different houses, I was also looking forward to getting more information about the House we are in.  A lot has been complaining that they do not want the house they were sorted into.  I think mostly, we have all formed such close affinity to Gryffindor because Harry himself was in that house.  Others, who are confident of their traits, see themselves in a certain house but ended in a completely different house are also dissatisfied. I also wanted to be in Gryffindor but after reading the information on Ravenclaw, I knew that the Sorting Hat put me in the correct house.  However, I still find it lacking.  I want more.  Maybe we can also explore our own common rooms and dormitories.  It will surely encourage those who did not want the house they were placed. We’d also like to explore the whole castle, the lake, Hagrid’s Hut and the Forbidden Forest.

Another thing on my list is communication.  We can only leave comments on the dashboard but we cannot send messages to friends.  I know this is mostly for protection of those who are underage but hopefully they can just add age restriction and allow those who are of age to communicate.

I guess that covers my list for now of the things I hope Pottermore could address.  Whether these can be achieved is completely in their hands.  I just hope the next book would come quickly.  This waiting game is surely exhausting and completely gets on everybody’s nerves.

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