Wizards Unite: two weeks in

Wizards Unite is the new mobile app game by the Wizarding World corporation, the company that manages all of JK Rowling’s Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts juggernaut franchises.

Wizards Unite is currently only available in Australia and NZ, giving the rest of the Potter world extreme FOMO. Developed by Niantic – the company behind Pokemon Go – and Portkey Games, the gaming developers for Wizarding World, it follows the same idea of Augmented Reality, giving you a chance to be a witch or wizard that has been recruited to maintain the Statute of Secrecy and protect the muggle world from ‘leaks’ of magic, known as the Calamity. More on this later.

This is what we learnt after playing for two weeks.

Warning – spoilers of major plotlines from the game below.

Wizards Unite map
It’s Harry!

Spell accuracy is less important than speed.

To collect the most XP per Confoundable, try tracing the spell quickly. Throw down a potion that can give you greater XP caught during a 30min period (Baruffio’s Brain elixir) or the Extimulo potion to improve your casting accuracy.

Amazing character design.

At night, vampires and centaurs emerge which you must battle. We are expecting werewolves the next time there is a full moon. Characters from the books and films bear an uncanny resemblance to the actors that play them.

Vampire oddity - Wizards UniteLuna Lovegood in Wizards Unite mobile game

Solving the overall mystery of the Calamity adds another layer to the game.

The overarching plot of the game as you cast back Confoundables to the wizarding world, is to find unveil clues (mysteries) to solve the mystery behind who caused the Calamity – which caused these leaks of magic into our world. Clues so far point to the cause of this being traced back to a wizard called Grim Fawley trying to bring back his wife after she was mysteriously killed as one of the London Five, a tragedy which struck and caused five witches and wizards to disappear.

Fortresses allow witches and wizards to fight together to collect coins 

Much like in Pokemon Go, Fortresses are like Gyms, but instead of battling each other, you battle against creatures and beasts to win gold coins, the main currency in the game – which can be bought via in-app purchases.

Collect spell energy from inns and ingredients from Greenhouses

Keep collecting spell energy as you are out and about, casting spells takes a lot out of you and not collecting spell energy could mean you could soon find yourself facing a Confoundable without the ability to cast a spell.

Where to find the game

The game is currently only available via Google Play and the App Store in Australia and NZ.

 

Confessions of a casual Guitar Hero gamer

Dear Activision,

When you announced four years ago that you were discontinuing the Guitar Hero franchise, I was upset. How could you do that? It seemed like it was selling well across all consoles. And you didn’t run out of music, so WHYYYYYYYY?

I hung on to my Wii, scoured eBay to get secondhand copies of GuitarHero Van Halen, World Tour and the occasional Glee Karaoke (Don’t judge me I am a casual gamer) and played like no one was watching. Because. No one was watching. I made sure of that and waited until no one was home, or were upstairs playing COD or some equivalent first person shooter that didn’t include music soundtracks or interactive controllers.

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Then my drum set broke. But I prevailed….I could stick to my two guitar consoles, and even tried a duo with myself – I am like a double threat, guitar and badly pitched vocals.

I kept going. Four years on and still have not been able to crack Saturdays Alright for Fighting on Medium. Who knew Elton John’s music could be such a minefield of difficult guitar riffs? I take my hat off to you Sir Elton.

I tried playing on iOS, but it is not the same without holding the actual guitar controller – there is no proper whammy and ‘air guitar’ style movements that you can easily do on an iPhone without encouraging strange looks from people around you.

Then I discovered, a month later than the world, that Guitar Hero was being rebooted and available with a new guitar controller on the new Apple TV – it is not just movies that are coming full circle, a whole new generation will get to experience the interactive game.

And once I saw this trailer I was sold.

Thank you Apple. And THANK YOU ACTIVISION.

Apple TV is going to rekindle my love of a casual game. By bringing games out of the mobile and tablet device and back into the living room, Apple is making a small but firm step into the world of ‘no console’ gaming. It wont by any means compete with the likes of XBox, PS or PC but it stands to corner a niche market of non-gamers and the average family – and there are ALOT of those.

My Christmas list will have this one item. And when I say Christmas list I mean, this is what I am buying myself with the cash I am getting from the Italian relos.

Yes I am in my thirties and buying a video game for myself for Christmas. I don’t need a dowry and I am sure the bills will pay for themselves right?

No Console. No Worries.