According to a recent Pottermore Insider blog, the Wizard’s Dueling section is temporarily down and the Potions section is being “tweaked.”
My personal opinion is that both games really need to be re-engineered. At minium, retry or reset buttons need to be added. Right now if you fail, or even successfully complete game, you are kicked out of the area with no way to easily return to try again. (Hint: Uses your browser’s back arrow vice the button on the bottom of the screen).
Neither of these activities make me want to visit Pottermore again for more chances to play. Playing the Wizard’s Duel made me feel like I was taking a typing test more than I was playing a game. Also it might not be intuitive to everyone but clicking on the different books to the left of the spells list gives you additional practise spells from which to choose. Brewing Potion is too time consuming.
At 80 minutes for the first potion (Cure for Boils) to complete, the system leaves you hanging with little to do. While it encourages you to continue to explore Pottermore you most likely will get kicked out of the system by the time the 80 minutes are up or you’ll give up and move on to something else – which means you supplies are used up for naught. It’s not always easy to find your way back if you leave the page either (Hint: Click on Potions, then click on cauldrons). Also if you “leave” Pottermore, and I don’t mean logout – just open another window to do something else, the system will get unstable. When you recheck the potion, don’t look at the status bar, it freezes the minute you leave the window. Make sure you check the actual percentage number.
My advice to anyone planning to do the potions is to immediately upgrade their cauldron. The pewter cauldron is the slowest cooking cauldron. If time is money for you, then pay to upgrade.
Another problem I have with potions is that if you mess up, and you know it, you can’t get out of the timer. As a result you have to wait 80 minutes or so for the system to tell you that you failed.
So Pottermore, request that you make the Dueling game less of a typing challenge, speed up the potions, and add reset buttons. In fact, I’d like a reset button so I can re-explore the whole site again! I guess that would mess with the house points too much but it would give us beta users something to do while we wait for the rest of the books to be loaded.
What other types of games would you like to see on Pottermore?
In addition to Wizard Chess, I’d like them to allow for multiple chocolate cards to be found (and traded). How about a catch the chocolate frog (before it jumps out the window) challenge? Quidditch pitch anyone? Give us a chance to pitch the quaffle past a keeper. Maybe a spells zapping something similar to Zuma? How about Word with Friends or Scrabble with other members? I’m sure Hermione would approve!
You might also consider tapping into existing HP games that EA & Lego produce for WB.
Whatever is added in the end it really needs to be something that will make people come back and play!