E3 2011: LEGO Harry Potter: Years 5-7 Preview

By Darryl Kaye on June 13, 2011, 12:43PM EDT

Traveller's Tales can take sole responsibility for reviving the LEGO brand in the world of video games, creating a solid concept that's perfect for kleptomaniacs and then attaching it with numerous known brands, like Star Wars and Indiana Jones. They've become so popular that we've already seen two LEGO titles release from Traveller's Tales this year alone, and they have a third in store for us in the form of LEGO Harry Potter: Years 5-7. It looks as though they're saving the best for last too, as with Years 5-7, the gloves are well and truly off.

The first, and probably biggest, change that has been made this time around concerns the world. Hogwarts is now a much more expansive place as you're able to just wander around and attend lessons. You can even walk out the front door and visit other places in the Harry Potter universe, such as King's Cross station. Traveller's Tales has attempted to make this the ultimate experience for Harry Potter fans, so they've included as many key locations as possible.

Later on in the game (spoilers), you will even get to destroy Hogwarts, and when you come back in Free Play, things will be very much different. It's safe to say that the development team working on this have had a ton of fun.

Four films will be tackled throughout the game and there will be six levels per film. The first film tackled works hand-in-hand with the new experience too, because in the Order of the Phoenix magic is prohibited. It enabled the developers to present a nice structure, as Harry and his chums have to learn many new spells which become integral in the puzzle solving gameplay.

One of these new spells allows you to cut shapes in objects. Dotted lines will sometimes appear on walls, and you have to trace around them to create a hole and make Lego pieces which can then be made it something else. Hermione's magical bag also comes in rather useful too.

Aside from the campaign levels, there will be plenty of other things to occupy players, with around 16 extra lessons to undertake in order to learn some extra stuff. There will also be plenty of side-missions and hidden tasks to get Gold Bricks. For example, using the new mind control spell on a London cab driver. Traveller's Tales also confirmed that the level creation tool, which was omitted for Lego: Pirates of the Caribbean, will return in Lego Harry Potter: Years 5-7.

It's clear when talking to the developers and just looking at the levels, that this is a game made by Harry Potter fans for Harry Potter fans. There are so many different subtle nods to the hardcore fans, like small pictures frames hidden in the background that only certain fans will notice. You also get to play as the bad guys in this experience too, which is something people have been asking for since the first game.

If you're a Harry Potter fan, this is the game you've been craving. Traveller's Tales are doing everything they possibly can to make this the best Harry Potter game ever created, and from the looks of things, they're well on their way to achieving this goal. You will be able to find out for yourself when the game ships later this year on almost every conceivable platform "“ it's even planned for PlayStation Vita.

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