Thoughts on Pottermore

When Pottermore was first announced last year I was looking really forward to it. I always thought that the Harry Potter series would make a great game. I was thinking something along the lines of Turbine's Lord of the Rings online, so when I learned Pottermore is basically an online portal where users can follow the story line of the book chapters, collect items, earn house points (through duels and brewing potions), etc., I was disappointed and never bothered to sign up for the website.

Months after the official public release date, I see positive response here and there. Today, I was very bored and decided to try Pottermore out. I must say that it was very underwhelming. I don't really see the fun in looking at a scene, hovering my mouse around till I get an item (or unlock stories). Shopping at the Diagon Alley perked me up a bit. After finishing the shopping list, you head over to Ollivander's Wand Shop where you need to answer a few questions to get a wand that perfectly suits you. I got a 13" Pear Dragon Heartstrings wand with hard flexibility which more or less means:

Longer wands typically suits taller people, or someone with a big personality or dramatic approach. The Pear type of wood goes into the hands of warm-hearted, generous, wise and are often popular and well-respected. The Dragon Heartstring core produces that most power, although very susceptible to accidents as it is temperamental.

After that, it was more or less the same with the early chapters until you get to answer a few questions again to help the Sorting Hat choose your house. I was placed in Ravenclaw, which was fine until I saw that it has the least number of members (Gryffindor with the most number of members, next is Hufflepuff then Slytherin). The Ravenclaw house has approximately less than 65000-70000 members than Slytherin. During the last house cup, the other houses has a point difference of almost 3 million than Ravenclaw, with Gryffindor as the winner. It's nice to see that as of now, Ravenclaw is at second place with Hufflepuff with the most points (although I'm not sure when the final counting of the points would be).

You can earn house points by collecting items such as cards and books, as well as through brewing potions and duels. I'm not a big fan of brewing potions as it is not keyboard friendly, so I just mainly enter duels. I think the Wizard's Duel page would be better if the matches that are done and the challenges awaiting are in separate tabs. They are just lumped on one column and you can only see 3 notices at a time (at least in my monitor). I haven't been playing for one day yet, but I got a considerable amount of notices on the duels page, and it was a bit tedious to click the down arrow on the screen repeatedly to sift so just I can find the ones I need to click. Also, since you don't lose house points even when you lose, I suggest having duels with other houses often.

As of now, only the two Harry Potter books are available on the website. I had just finished the first book (Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone) and I'm not really sure if I want to continue with the second book. Even though I'm not a big fan of the Harry Potter series, I admit reading the books and watching the films were very enjoyable so I had high hopes for Pottermore. I wish that I had taken a much needed nap instead. 

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