The beauty of Wonderbook is that it can take some very simple story ideas and push them as far as they can go. After the entertaining but slightly monotone Book of Spells comes the natural extension “Book of Potions”. Although it is part of the Harry Potter world, you do not need to know anything about Potter to enjoy or get this game. I’ve only seen the first film…
Your Wonderbook becomes a potion table and the majority of the game is spent using your move controller to add ingredients to your cauldron. Each ingredient comes with a little introduction as you examine it with a magnifying glass and then you prepare it. It’s here where the game becomes more like Cooking Mama than anything else. You’ll be chopping, squeezing, juicing, grinding, pouring and shaking your contents into the cauldron and then after a stir and some heating your potion will be ready. The overarching story is you are part of a competition and you’ll need to create a potion to move forward and win a prize. There are several mini-games throughout and each potion ends with a dramatic use of the potion. These are often very fun and quite generous in terms of difficulty and accuracy.
Once completed (it will be done in 4-5 hours) you can perfect each chapter and find hidden ingredients to make your own potions and test them out on a frog. The graphics throughout are some of Wonderbooks’ finest and the biggest gripe I had with the first game, the speed of story telling, is dramatic improved here. This time round you’re not forced to flick the story page every two sentences with your wand and removing that barrier makes the game so much enjoyable. The narration is very theatrical and on par with Puppeteer for ham – and there’s nothing wrong with that as it builds on the atmosphere already created.
~ It’s like Cooking Mama on the PS3 (Wizard Mama?!)
~ Charmingly presented with lush audio and visual content
~ Is very fair with its accuracy levels
~ You have to put down your current tool and pick up another throughout the game and sometimes there is a depth problem where you can’t quite line up the tools to switch over smoothly
A marked improvement over Book of Spells, Book of Potions is one of the most enjoyable gaming experiences for the under 10’s and for the… 29 year olds *cough cough* that still are secretly five on the inside.