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Check out the Whomping Willow and Knight Bus games from WB.

Harry Potter Quidditch World Cup.  Finally EA Games is out to redeem itself from the disappointing Quidditch of the first Potter games.  Good luck to them!

ATTENTION RPGers!  (And let's face it that's most of you).  Ars Magica Fourth Ed. is available FREE ONLINE.  

For those of you who love arcade-style games (or remember Asteroids).  Check out the Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator site.  This is incredible stuff -- with engineers across the globe writing emulators to run code from arcade consoles on your computer.

Check out The Underdogs, a site I read about in HotWired.  It's devoted to videogames / computer games that are no longer commercially available.  You will definitely find something that you enjoy.

Titles are really important.  Take the videogame versions Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.  They tell you the story is about Harry Potter.  They are not called Harry Potter's Fantastic Quidditch Match or Quidditch for the Harry Potter Fan.  There is a very good reason for this.  The Quidditch in both the PC version and the Playstation version is similar in scope to the Quidditch at the WB site -- underwhelming.  While some of the screen shots might give you the impression you're going to be playing Quidditch in a fully-realized 3D environment, please allow me to disillusion you (in the formal sense of the word).  The Quidditch here has you chasing the Snitch along a trail while avoiding obstacles (sound like the WB version?).  That's it.   The voice-over commentary gets repetitive really quickly and was obviously written by a Pottermaniac (it consists of cheers for Harry and an apologia of partisanship).  Keeping in mind the name of the site to which you have paid a visit, and the obvious preoccupations of your humble webmaster, the fact that that is all there is to the Quidditch treatment in these games would sound like a good reason for cutting short this review and sending you along to something else -- like 43 Man Squamish (you know there's something about "qu" in fictitious games -- might be some English grad student's PhD thesis in that).  Both games are really about learning spells and following through the actions of the book.  If you've read the books there will be no surprises -- but the essence of videogaming is in the surprises. In the end I was left with the eye candy of the animated sequences which are pretty good throughout. But like the movie I was left with an empty feeling of technical deja voodoo:  I could have been reading instead. 

You want something as unspellable as Quidditch and lots funnier?  The answer:  43-Man Squamish.  Writer Tom Koch and Artist George Woodbridge created a satire of the scale and beauty of a Faberge Egg in Mad # 95 from the mythical year of 1965.  The ball is called the Pritz, the pitch is five-sided and called a Flutney, nuclear physics is easier to understand than the scoring.  Look for it in an anthology somewhere.  I quote:

A Squamish team consists of 43 players: the left & right Inside Grouches, the left & right Outside Grouches, four Deep Brooders, four Shallow Brooders, five Wicket Men, three Offensive Niblings, four Quarter-Frummerts, two Half-Frummerts, one Full-Frummert, two Overblats, two Underblats, nine Back-Up Finks, two Leapers, and a Dummy.

The Harry Potter & the Sorcerer's Stone videogame was released November 16 from Electronic Arts.  According to Amazon, on the Windows version (Click for Screenshots) you can:

bulletPlay the role of Harry Potter
bulletSneak, climb, and jump as you explore 3-D environments
bulletPlay fast-paced, arcade-style Quidditch
bulletInteract with more than 20 characters
bulletBattle evil creatures using all of Harry's abilities

cover The Microsoft Windows version  EA's site

The Game Boy Advance version.  EA's Site

The Playstation Game EA's site

The Game Boy Color cartridge. EA's site

Chamber of Secrets is of a kind.

 

 

 

 

Features:
bulletJourney from Privet Drive to Hogwarts, and sneak, climb, and jump as you explore Hogwarts and its grounds
bulletOvercome evil creatures using all of Harry’s abilities, and win house points for Gryffindor
bulletLearn to fly on a broomstick and play the fast-paced game of Quidditch
bulletInteract with over twenty unforgettable characters from J.K. Rowling’s magical world, including Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, Rubeus Hagrid, the Dursleys, and Albus Dumbledore
bulletUncover special items including the Invisibility Cloak, wizard sweets, potion ingredients, Chocolate Frog Famous Wizard Cards, and broomsticks
bulletIncludes creatures and locations not seen in the books or movies