The wait is over! We now have some inside information, pictures and a video to let those who have not been given beta access what the ‘Pottermore’ site looks like!
It was only 2 weeks ago that Harry Potter fans sat by their computer waiting for the daily clue to find the Magical Quill that would allow them early entry to ‘Pottermore’. Only 1 million spots were available and once they were all filled, those who were unable to register were left feeling like a Muggle. According to the official ‘Pottermore’ blog, ‘Inside Pottermore’, invitations to the site will be staggered allowing a “very small number of people” to play during each of the beta phases.
Well, they were true to their word as only a few thousand were given access yesterday (about 13, 848 at the time this is being written) when the site opened up to the beta testers. But don’t despair! Here’s some information from those who did get in as to what to expect once logged onto the site (you can click on the images to see them in a larger view):
Upon entering ‘Pottermore’, the user is interwoven into the book ‘Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone’ with a short introductory video from JK Rowling. Each chapter from the book has been redesigned into a painting which can be explored further once it’s clicked upon. Navigation icons allow the user to read and move within each chapter revealing many pages of backstory and behind the scenes information that were written by JK Rowling and not included in the book. From there, opening an account at Gringotts, the goblin bank, shopping for school equipment and buying potion items can be done. Throughout the site, the player can also learn spells, brew potions and collect items to put into a trunk for later use.
One of the most fascinating aspects of the site is the decision of the wand. Questions asked by a videotaped Rowling help connect the player with a specific type of wand dependent on their answers. From there personalization can occur, so by the end of the process a wand that fits the personality of the person who constructed it is made. (From the reactions on Twitter, the matches are remarkably accurate.)
Not only is the wand set to the person’s character but also the house they are sorted into. Once again a series of questions written by Rowling herself are asked before being placed into one of four appropriate homes. Once in a house, socialization can begin within the common room. The site can be linked to Facebook where others can find friends who are also users of the ‘Pottermore’ site or the addition of other users can be done. From there, duels can be fought and won using spells and wands, the user can participate for the House Cup, and the acceptance into Hogwarts can be obtained.
Although this is just a basic outline of what the site includes, there are many side avenues and game-like activities that will engage the user for hours. And this on just one book! As time goes on, Rowling will add each book into the mix.
So far the reviews of the site have been mixed but it seems if the user is a Potter fan, it is well liked as opposed to someone who may not be as familiar. So don’t give up yet! The beta process just started yesterday and ‘Inside Pottermore’ did confirm that those who did gain early registration will get in before the site it officially opens to the public in October. If you were one of the few that were able to access ‘Pottermore’, let us know! We would love to hear what you think of the site!