Harry Potter: Spells & Spells Free
iPhone, iPod Touch App
Warner Bros. Digital Distribution
Price: $2.99; Free
Even with the book series concluded and the two-part final film adaptation on the horizon, the Harry Potter multimedia franchise shows no signs of slowing down as evident with the new Spells and Spells Free apps for the iPhone and iPod Touch.
Spells definitely focuses on giving those who download it a full Harry Potter experience, by signing your admissions letter to Hogwarts, choosing the correct wand, and having the Sorting Hat tell you which house you’re assigned. Only after completing all of this can you actually start exploring the menu.
Predictably, the app allows fans to learn 17 different spells taught to wizards of Hogwarts, including Serpensortia, Stupefy, Incendio, and the Unforgivable Curse Avada Kedavra. The advantage of getting the paid app is that it comes with the first four spell packs ($0.99-each, total of $4), so you’re essentially getting a deal. After finishing the 7-year curriculum, users can then challenge the CPU to a duel or face real-life opponents online or right next to you.
While you can pick one of the four house factions, record your own voice for each spell, and fight the person sitting next to you, the real gem of this app is its use of motion controls, which allow you to wave the device around to mimic a wand. Being a sucker for SFX on my mobile device, this scares me only because I foresee many o’ iPhones slipping from wizardly grips and shattering. Still, it won’t stop be from dueling someone while waiting in line for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 in November.
Besides entertaining Harry Potter geeks, the app definitely has the potential to enhance the storytelling experience — especially for people such as myself who only watched the movies and couldn’t differentiate between spells.
Both Harry Potter: Spells and Spells – Free are available for download on iTunes.