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Expelliarmus! EA announces Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince videogame

6:17 PM on 04.22.2008 // Samit Sarkar

I’m sure many of you are die-hard fans of the Harry Potter books, and if you’re like me, finishing the last page of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was an emotional, bittersweet experience. It almost felt like a chapter of my life — one that had begun when a best friend first recommended Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone to me — was closing. But luckily, we still have the last two films left to go, and as far as I’m concerned, they’ve been getting better and better.

The sixth film, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, is set for release on November 21, 2008. Today, EA announced the movie tie-in game of the same name, which will, of course, be out before the film. Here’s a heads-up on what to expect:

In the game of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, players will return to Hogwarts to help Harry survive a fraught sixth year. They will also have a chance to engage in exciting wizard duels, mix and brew magical ingredients in Potions class and take to the air to lead the Gryffindor Quidditch team to victory. Players may even get sidetracked by Ron's romantic entanglements as they journey towards a dramatic climax and discover the identity of the Half-Blood Prince.

Oooh, boy...I can’t wait to hear about “Ron’s romantic entanglements”! I’m sure there are plenty of crazy stories. Anyway, the game will be jointly produced by EA Casual Entertainment and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, and the press release (after the jump) accordingly focuses on how the game will control on the Wii. Of course, the screenshot above is from either the 360 or PS3 version, but it’ll be interesting to see what the developers, EA Bright Light, can do to truly make the game “a milestone in the movie tie-in genre.”

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (the game) will be out shortly before November 21, 2008, for all the platforms you can imagine: PS3, 360, Wii, PS2, PSP, DS, PC, Mac, and “mobile devices”. For a good laugh, check out the hilariously bad plot summary in the press release, including spelling/grammar errors.

EA and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment Announce Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince™ Video Game

Fans will relive the thrills, action and excitement of the movie this holiday season

Guildford, U.K. - April 22nd , 2008 - EA's Casual Entertainment Label and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment today announced that the Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince video game will be released later this year to coincide with the Warner Bros. Pictures film based on J.K. Rowling's sixth Harry Potter book.

"We believe that the Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince video game represents a milestone in the movie tie-in genre," said Harvey Elliott, Head of EA Bright Light studio in the UK where the Harry Potter franchise has its home. "Building on the technological advancements of previous games in the series and with a particular focus on the unique control system of Nintendo's Wii™ , the team here is working closely with the filmmakers to create an immersive interactive experience that captures the story, the action, the excitement and, above all, the fun of the film."

"Working with EA, we look forward to offering fans a compelling Harry Potter video game, one which captures the thrilling storyline and high visual quality of the movie," said Scott Johnson, Vice President, Business Development for Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. "The adherence to the rich fiction is a trademark of this franchise and with Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince fans will experience the most authentic and enjoyable game in the series to date."

In Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Voldemort is tightening his grip on both the Muggle and wizarding worlds and Hogwarts is no longer the safe haven it once was. Harry suspects that dangers may even lie within the castle, but Dumbledore is more intent upon preparing him for the final battle that he knows is fast approaching. Together they work to find the key to unlock Voldemort's defenses and, to this end, Dumbledore recruits his old friend and colleague, the well-connected and unsuspecting bon vivant Professor Horace Slughorn, whom he believes holds crucial information. Meanwhile, the students are under attack from a very different adversary as teenage hormones rage across the ramparts. Harry finds himself more and more drawn to Ginny, but so is Dean Thomas. And Lavender Brown has decided that Ron is the one for her, only she hadn't counted on Romilda Vane's chocolates! And then there's Hermione, simmering with jealously but determined not to show her feelings. As romance blossoms, one student remains aloof. He is determined to make his mark, albeit a dark one. Love is in the air, but tragedy lies ahead and Hogwarts may never be the same again.

In the game of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, players will return to Hogwarts to help Harry survive a fraught sixth year. They will also have a chance to engage in exciting wizard duels, mix and brew magical ingredients in Potions class and take to the air to lead the Gryffindor Quidditch team to victory. Players may even get sidetracked by Ron's romantic entanglements as they journey towards a dramatic climax and discover the identity of the Half-Blood Prince.

Under development by EA Bright Light Studio, the team behind the worldwide success of the Harry Potter library of games, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is scheduled for release in time for the movie launch this fall for the Wii™, PLAYSTATION®3, Xbox 360™, PlayStation®2, PSP® (PlayStation®Portable), Nintendo DS™, Windows PC, Macintosh and mobile devices.



Samit Sarkar,
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