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Critics: “Ridiculous” Potter game will disappoint fans

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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 [X360, PS3, PC]

Fans of Britain's most famous wizard won't have failed to notice that this is something of a big week for the young conjurer. Ten years after the release of the first Potter movie, the series finally wraps up this week -- and it's doing so with the blessing of most critics, who've been lavishing it with impressive reviews.

Question is, can the accompanying video game do as well?

The last Potter title, released last year alongside Deathly Hallows Part 1, was a mess, a real disappointment for a series that has turned out some surprisingly decent console entertainment in the past. Potter fans are clearly hoping Part 2 -- releasing just eight months later -- heralds a return to form.

And although it's scoring a little better than Part 1, it's pretty clear those fans are in for a rough finale.

Gamespot's Kevin VanOrd scored it a dismal 4.0, describing it as a "conceptually ridiculous" game that sounds more like a first-person shooter than a spell-casting sim.

"Stupefy isn't a stunning spell in this game: It's a pistol," VanOrd writes. "Expulso isn't an exploding spell: It's a rapid-fire machine gun. Confringo isn't a blasting curse: It's a grenade launcher. And forget everything you know about apparating, which you probably never imagined as a short-range teleport."

That's by no means the extent of VanOrd's issues with the liberties Deathly Hallows takes with its source material. And it doesn't sound like general action-game fans will be too impressed with the latest Potter either.

"You shoot the same nameless generic enemies time and again," he says, "and then you move down a narrow path so you can take some cover and shoot more clones...Even on its hardest difficulty, Deathly Hallows Part 2 isn't challenging." Top that off with a "mercifully short" three-and-a-half-hour story, and you're left with precious little to get your
pulse racing.

Game Informer's Joe Juba is a little more upbeat, crediting Part 2 with being an improvement over the last game, but it's still obvious he didn't have much fun with the game.

"Each level is a constant flow of generic bad guys with little variation and an AI that barely allows them to stand upright, much less attack with any strategy," Juba complains. "The resulting firefights feel like shooting fish in a barrel; I only died once, when I accidentally unpaused the game while I was eating lunch at my desk."

A lackluster 6.5/10 is his verdict, and the game is currently rating a disappointing 57% at review aggregation site Metacritic. The message is pretty clear: Potter fans, enjoy the movie, but leave the game at Hogwarts.

(Buy on Amazon | Find out More)

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