By John Walker on April 15th, 2010 at 9:58 pm.
Look, right, I’m just going to say it: I don’t much like Harry Potter. The books, I mean. I’m sure Harry’s just lovely. But the whole thing has never done anything for me. I’m not boasting – how tiresome people are who think they’re clever for not liking something popular. I’m missing out. (Although I can always re-read His Dark Materials, I suppose.) But still. I tell you this to explain my confusion at the new video for Lego: Harry Potter Years 1-4. It’s quite a dilemma really – the Lego Star Wars games were wonderful, and even though the Lego Indys were weaker they still offered that smash-everything fun that appeals to me so. So of course a Potter game will offer the opportunity for deliberately making those characters collapse into their Lego bits over and over.
I do like the video’s opening question. “Could you imagine what it was like, being a wizard, going to a school like Hogwarts?” As if it’s something from the 17th century. So asks Tom Stone, Mr Boss Man at Traveller’s Tales. The lovely Jon Smith (he used to work at PC Gamer you know. He once gave me a Lego Bionicles toy) informs us that this is the most detailed Lego world they’ve built so far. The footage does look very much like the format is being followed, which is by no means a bad thing. And rather unlike Indy, it will make some sense that Harry and chums can rebuild Lego bits into things using magic.
My hope is that the cutscenes take a healthy amount of the piss out of Rowling’s franchise, much as the first Lego Star Wars so cheekily poked fun at Lucas’s universe. Oh, and “Hogwarts” – “warthogs” – I just got that.