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Game Boy Advance / Review / Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
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Publisher: EA
Developer: Amaze Entertainment
ESRB Rating: Everyone
Graphics: 4.0
Sound:4.0
Control: 4.0
3.0
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Review by: Iron Monkey
Posted: 06/17/04 [view screens]

Harry's third year at Hogwarts begins when mass-murdering sorcerer Sirius Black escapes from Azkaban Fortress and resolves to put an end to the career of the young magic man; all the while, the mysterious Dementors arrive at Hogwarts, apparently to protect Potter. While the franchise on the GBA still seems wan compared to deeper handheld RPGs, Prisoner of Azkaban's faithfulness to the book, mesmerizing graphics, and captivating score are a treat for Potter fans.

If you have played either of the last two Potter games on the GBA, you can expect more of the same quasi-RPG gameplay in Prisoner with the added appeal of being able to connect to the GameCube and race owls. You still have to attend wizard classes to learn new magical spells, take on side-quests, explore Hogwarts for magic collector cards, hang out with Hagrid, and drink potions while leaping into random turn-based battles to gain experience and power. The newest game hook is the ability to control Ron Weasley and Hermione after they join your party, adding a bit of depth over previous games as each character has magical skills that Harry doesn't. For example, Ron can cast spells that illuminate dark areas and reveal hidden passages, while Hermione can repair bridges and staircases that are otherwise impassible. Characters are designed to complement one another, and it's cool to juggle them and figure out who is best suited for the challenge at hand. Simplistic yet delightful, although it's one of the few games you'll play in which you have to go to class.


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