You could be forgiven for being just a little bit tired of Harry Potter, when everywhere you turn there are advertisements, trailers, interviews, and magazine features for the new movie.

But let's give the bespectacled young wizard his due; the previous two Potter games for mobile have actually been quite good, with Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince landing itself no less than a Pocket Gamer Bronze Award.

Don't mention his name

For those few unfamiliar with the plot, Deathly Hallows starts on rather a dark note for the Chosen one and his young friends. Harry has chosen to drop out of school after the death of Dumbledore, Voldemort has returned and taken over the Ministry of Magic, and Ron is still cursed with ginger hair.

The game begins with Harry, Ron and Hermione hiding from the Death Eaters in a cafeteria. Such respite doesn't last long, however, and you're soon discovered by one of the dark lord's minions. Time to break out the wands then.

Combat in Deathly Hallows is surprisingly strategic. Armed initially with just the Stupefy spell for attack, you need to learn quickly to time your movements to dodge the hostile spells, stabbing the '5' key to launch your own attacks.

You can also surround Harry with a shield by casting the Protego spell, accessed by a tap of the '*' key.

Expecto Patronum!

As you progress through the first few chapters of Deathly Hallows, you'll steadily unlock the rest of Harry's spells, often just before you need them to solve a specific puzzle.

You'll also learn how to concoct potions using the plethora of ingredients that are lying around. Although this is achieved by simply going into the menu and selecting the appropriate recipe, it adds a welcome layer of depth to proceedings.

Further depth is added with the inclusion of the Magic Points system. These are awarded for casting spells in or out of combat, or for collecting special golden stars. You can use the magic points to increase your abilities, making spells more powerful, or improving your skills at potion making or the (underused) art of stealth.


Each level is surprisingly long, with the first chapter alone taking around 40 minutes to complete. Thankfully you can save your progress at any time by simply accessing the options and exiting to the main menu.

The atmosphere is maintained superbly, whether you're sneaking around a mansion searching for clues, or wandering the forest in search of a safe place to camp, the Death Eaters are rarely far behind you.

As if evil wizards weren't bad enough, you'll occasionally be set upon by the sinister Dementors and have to summon Harry's stag Patronus to chase them away from your vulnerable friends.

Harry Plodder

There's a lot of fun to be had in Deathly Hallows Part 1, but it isn't without its flaws. Although combat is almost always superb, you'll occasionally encounter clusters of spiders that pounce on Harry, interrupting spell casting over and over in an entirely unfair fashion.

Those long levels can become somewhat tiresome too, with Ron and Hermione occasionally getting confused and stopping behind scenery. Harry's slow pace doesn't help here, and the addition of a run key would have been most welcome.

Overall, though, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 is an example to any developer planning to make a movie tie-in. The brilliant atmosphere, challenging combat and superb storytelling are a magical recipe that any potions master would be proud of.