Innovative interactive book opens new door to Harry Potter.
Common Sense Media
26 November 2012
Summary: Parents need to know that Wonderbook: Book of Spells is a less a game than a collection of Harry Potter-themed stories and activities. It requires a Wonderbook -- a paper and cardboard storybook that comes with the game -- as well as a PlayStation Move controller and PlayStation Eye camera. You can purchase the game and Wonderbook, or a bundle that also includes the Move and Eye camera.
Excerpt: Wonderbook: Book of Spells is an innovative and engaging augmented reality (AR) title for PlayStation Move that successfully paves the way for future entries in the Wonderbook series. Written in collaboration with Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling and developed by AR pioneers SCE London Studio (EyeToy, EyePet), this interactive spell book is primarily aimed at children who can’t get enough of all the fantastic charms and hexes featured in the Harry Potter books and...
Excerpt: Book of Spells is the first game to come out that supports Sony’s Wonderbook peripheral which was first introduced at E3 this year. Despite a demo that dragged on for too long and that was plagued by technical issues, I really warmed to the idea of Wonderbook after spending some hands on time with it (the mock living room with carpet and fireplace in Sony’s booth didn’t hurt either).
Summary: It’s impossible to approach Sony’s cross-media Wonderbook as you would a ‘normal’ video game. To cynical, adult eyes, it’s more of an independent peripheral, and a fairly odd one at that. A large, padded book full of Augmented Reality markers that, when matched with a PlayStation Move wand and a PS Eye camera, brings its contents to life on screen. The technology and concept behind it is brilliantly... basic, almost.
Conclusion: An impressive first outing for Wonderbook and a genuinely magical experience for younger Potterphiles. However, it’s one best enjoyed in small doses, and you're left wishing that there was more room to wield magic, think, solve puzzles and just play. Book of Spells might convince you you're a wizard, but it hardly ever lets you explore the part. Wonderbook will keep the kids enchanted on Christmas Day, but their enthusiasm may pall before Boxing Day is over.
Pros: Inspired use of Augmented Reality technology, Sky-high production values, Effective and entertaining spell-casting
Cons: Mundane spell-casting exercises, Gives the reader little chance to think or play
Wonderbook: Book of Spells Review | Accio Peripherals!
14 November 2012
Conclusion: The Short Version: Book of Spells brings Harry Potter's world of witchcraft and wizardry to life in fine fashion, but it runs out of ideas a little too quickly and spends rather too much time telling players how to be a wizard or a witch, without really letting them become one in satisfying fashion. It does, however, potentially point towards a bright future for Wonderbook in terms of execution and originality.
Pros: Cracking use of AR and motion control, Potterverse is brought to life in charming fashion, Moments f magic hint at a special future for Wonderbook
Cons: But there's not enough substance, Not enough variety, Not enough freedom to ever think for yourself