Pottermore to unveil new site this summer

Pottermore will be going under a major revision this summer.

Pottermore will be going under a major revision this summer.

Pottermore will be undergoing a major revamping summer, with a new site design, new capabilities, and much more as it “seeks to broaden both the user base and its publishing business.”

This summer, Pottermore will launch a new design for the site that will enable users to use the core parts of the Pottermore experience – getting sorted at Hogwarts, cast spells, and play Wizard Duel without registering for the site.

Once users sign up for Pottermore, they will be able to explore the books and content in any order they like. This will automatically eliminate the required tasks that users had to complete before moving on with the story (like mini-games, etc.) The site will also feature general information about the world of Harry Potter for those not acquainted with the books, such as “Who is Harry Potter?”

The new site will also increase user and site interactivity by allowing players to visit their Common Rooms and shop in Diagon Alley without incorporating the Harry Potter story, separating the two.

Pottermore CEO Charlie Redmayne told  The Bookseller about the new updates, saying that although the original site was a “fantastic” arena for hardcore fans, it was more difficult for those not familiar with Harry Potter.

A quote from his interview with The Bookseller about the updates and the business side of it:

“As it stands, if you don’t know the books, you won’t get much out of it. What we want to do is open it out for those people who haven’t read the books, or who haven’t seen the films, but perhaps come to it via the Lego, or the Harry Potter computer games.”

“This to me is ultimately a publishing business. We are beginning to see what Pottermore is: it was never just a website… It is a book, but we didn’t publish it as a book. It is a good example of what publishers need to do: think about all the ways of publishing a piece of content.”

Along with this, Pottermore will also be releasing new products, including apps and the recently announced Book of Potions for Wonderbook on PlayStation 3. Pottermore has also launched CreateMore, a company that has been “working with established brands such as the Beano [a British comic] and Guinness World Records over their digital strategies.” Redmayne hinted the release of new products and working with other brands in our two-part interview with him back in February.

Will this revamp finally reach the needs of all Harry Potter fans? Share your thoughts about the upcoming updates in the comments below.


40 responses to “Pottermore to unveil new site this summer

  1. As far as I’m concerned, no matter what they do and how great the changes will be, Harry Potter fans will never be satisfied. They’re too spoilt and demanding for that!

  2. This is, of course, aiming to the customers of Sony PS3 (“Book of Spells/Potions”) who only bought the game without having read the books or watched the movies. I don’t think it is bad. But I never liked how Pottermore was something promising for the Harry Potter fans (Jo herself) to what is it today: something for customers. I always said it, this is marketing in the best form – but the problem is it was presented as something else.

  3. will this include the the final padlock being revealed and will the last chapters of prisoner of azkaban be released?

    • I’m guessing the final padlock will never be revealed, if the site is completely redesigned. It’s likely that the final padlock’s purpose will be integrated into the new site.

      I’m thinking too that the last chapters of Prisoner of Azkaban will be released before this is. This way, the Pottermore team can get through with that, and then focus on this.

      • well perhaps they wont if they redesign the page
        and yeah good point while were doing the new chapters they can work on the new design and get it read and that so i hope they come within the next couple of weeks, i’m looking forward to the Remus Lupin biography it should be good!

  4. As a hardcore fan of Pottermore, I am left wondering if the new site will remain something I will want to participate in. I have thoroughly enjoyed the increased level of difficulty in moving forward, having to solve puzzles and learn mini-games, and of course the people who I have met in Pottermore are the strongest draw. Please make sure we have challenges and obstacles.

  5. The site will also feature general information about the world of Harry Potter for those not acquainted with the books, such as “Who is Harry Potter?” What are there really people out there who do not know the answer ???? I am a day 1 Beta Tester and I don’t want the site watered down for people who do not know even that basic information 😦

  6. All of this seems to be a move in the wrong direction. Pottermore, as explained to those of us who “followed the owls” two years ago, was a thank you to fans from JK Rowling. It seems this is no longer the case. I was grateful that mini-games and potions became integrated into the content, thus making the site more challenging, rewarding, and fun. My hope was that as the books increased in difficulty, so would Pottermore. I’m disappointed that this is not the case and wonder if I will continue with the site when it changes to its new and utterly watered-down format.

  7. I have only been on Pottermore for a few months now…and I find the games and puzzles all wonderful! But these new changes that are meant to eliminate some of the challenges will just ruin the enjoyment of advancing to the new part.

      • Shouldn’t they have the games within the chapters so if some people want to do it they can? And for those that dont they can just skip it? That way everyone is happy? I thought this site was suppose to encourage people to learn more about the series.. So I really don’t understand why this should be hard for people who didn’t read the books.. and if they didn’t read the book or see the movies, they obviously are the population that won’t do potter more. Just because someone plays one Harry potter video game doesn’t mean they would want to do potter more. You just can’t account for everyone.

  8. Why would anyone not familiar with the Harry Potter saga want to visit the common rooms or Diagon alley? They only exist in the Harry Potter world. Trying to bring in gamers that are not Potter fans to a site managed as poorly as the current one will surely be a disaster. Why don’t you just get better management and make improvements to the current format?

  9. I too am concerned about the increased focus on bringing those who are unfamiliar with the Harry Potter story into Pottermore. The site was marketed as a “thank you” to the fans of the books/films. While I support bringing additional fans into the wizarding world, I do not feel Pottermore is the place for that. In addition, the site, in its current form, is riddled with problems which have been systematically and consistently ignored. I am skeptical that adding additional features will provide a better experience for either current or future fans when the existing issues have yet to be addressed. I join my fellow Pottermore members in wondering if the new Pottermore will be something I will enjoy as a hardcore Harry Potter fan.

    • Good point! I’m sorry that they’ve decided that hardcore Harry Potter fanbase is no longer enough for them. It looks more and more like a business venture (it probably always was!) than a place for Harry Potter fans to have fun…

      • I am confused…are you not the same poster from the top of the comments who said that Potter fans are “too spoilt and demanding,” and with which the Pottermore mod clearly agreed, replying “took the words right out of my mouth?” As the muggles say, “Truth will out!”

        I, too, followed the owls, and managed to become a last day beta tester. I have been dismayed by the ongoing and blatant disregard by Pottermore of those who play only to cause discord, who it now appears is more the target audience than those who actually read and enjoyed the books. Legitimate players are banned for reporting abuse, though Pottermore denies that vehemently in ridiculously canned form letters. Clearly, we are merely an annoyance in the quest for the ultimate goal – profit.

  10. They are only doing it to get more non Potterheads interested on PlayStation Home, which I think is a huge mistake. At the moment I’ve met loads of people that are going out and reading the books so they can learn more about the genre, but if they stop the need to register, they will stop the need to learn more. Also dumbing things down is never a wise move as it lessens the quality provided over all. I know that we only have a vague idea of what it will actually look like in reality but I think its going to be a bit of a kick in the teeth for all us day 1 Beta’s who have stuck with it from the beginning purely because we loved the books. The site is different from other sites at the moment, but this supposed revamp could end up with us losing what has made it so unique.

  11. honestly, I have been on pottermore since day 1. Beta test and all. and I’m bored with it. I don’t like waiting and if there is other things that I can do while the books are opening up then great. but you can only cast the same spell so many times. or brew the same potion so many times. it gets old. this at least might make them revamp more often and offer things that will keep people entertained. as far as reaching out to the people who haven’t read the books, great idea. this is a business people. you think that pottermore was made just to thank you? while yes that was a nice bonus, the original intent was to go behind the books. give us more than what JK put in the story. It would only make sense to also draw in people that maybe never read the book but are curious what is so fascinating to other people. I own all the books, and the movies and watch them whenever they are on ABC family. But, and yes i know is sound slanderous, I am tired of what pottermore offers right now. I am bored. Give us more

    • I agree with you, on both sides. Yes, Pottermore is a business and yes the intent of the site was not only to give a thank you to fans — it was a business proposition, and the background content revealed has mostly pleased readers. And yes, I see that Pottermore is boring in some ways. Yes, many think that the site is only interesting when new content is posted, but it’s not like Potions and Wizard Duel are somewhat fun if you take the time to give them a chance (not you directly, but fans as a whole). If one is looking for a game they can play all day, for hours and hours and hours, then maybe Pottermore isn’t right for them, because Pottermore was never meant to be used in that manner. We will see if things will change with this new site but I really don’t think some fans are willing to give it a shot. Oh well, there’s only so much one can do…

      • I don’t disagree with you, and I am certainly not anti-business or against people making money legitimately. What bothers me about this is that one of the points (I thought) of the original Pottermore was not just JKR’s gift to us, but to involve people who had not read the books to the extent that they would pick them up and **read them**. It was, I thought, originally a companion to the books; a concordance, if you will, meant to deepen, complement and encourage the reading experience.

        JKR has always seemed truly honored that the books got young people (and older ones too) to actually read, or got them back into reading the written word. This strikes me as a way to actually cut that part out, and that seems to me a shame.

        Will we still be able to go in order and do the things along the way as we progress if we want to do it that way?

      • Hello – an answer to your question at the end of your comment (thanks for both! 🙂 — I’m taking a guess and saying yes. It would illogical to not have it in order. I think what Redmayne meant was that players can explore any of the books in non-sequential order, but the content will still be ordered. I imagine all of this will be explained when they formally announce this, so stay tuned! 🙂

  12. I don’t know, to be honest. I honestely think all we need is new spells and potions to put the fun in the site again. People don’t do wizards duels anymore because they are not interested in the website, it’s because they are tired of casting Petrificus Totaluses (which is a 1st year spell, now we’re in 3rd year) since August 2011.
    Plus… they promoted the biography of Lupin back in October 2012, and it is not yet revealed to this day. I love the website, but their team just killed the fun of out it by doing empty promises and not updating with new spells and potions to interact with other users.
    I think a revamp will not attract a lot of new users because the website in itself is not the problem, the problem is that there is no excitement about it anymore 😦

  13. Honestly, my concern at present is not so much the proposed changes to the site but instead the first two comments posted. The first of which stated “… Harry Potter fans will never be satisfied. They’re too spoilt and demanding for that!” I’m surprised the she didn’t also include the often used “it’s a free site, leave if you don’t like it.” But as much as I disagree with her assessment of Pottermore fans, I was most disappointed in your reply of “Took the words right out of my mouth…”. I’m sorry that you feel that way and must now question your stance on anything related to Harry Potter, Pottermore, or possibly even Sony. How can you you portray yourself as representative of Pottermore and its fan base when you can make such a comment? Your obvious bias is disappointing. Be well and I wish you well in your future endeavors. Though you have lost my participation (and I assume a few other Potterheads) I’m sure you will fill those ranks quickly with those of the initial comment’s ilk.

    • Let me get one thing clear: I am not a representative of Pottermore nor of this fanbase. I never have been and I never will be. The disclaimer on the right side of this website clearly reads that we are not affiliated at all with Pottermore, J.K. Rowling, The Blair Partnership, etc., (refer to the disclaimer to see the other companies we do not represent) and so therefore my opinions express do not represent Pottermore’s opinion. You shared your opinion, I am entitled to have mine. Yes, I realize I appear bias, but this is just how I feel. Do I feel sympathy for the Pottermore Team that they receive little to no appreciation among the fans? Yes. Do I feel like some fans are being selfish? Yes. They are being selfish in that a) they expect that the site should only be about them and not let other new fans come in, and b) they feel everything should be catered to them — no waiting, no price, and no changes – if they are bad, like having new people on Pottermore. This does not mean that I do not see the other side of the argument? I am also bored with the site. I wish there was more to do. I wish I could play Book of Spells and Book of Potions, but I know I’m not going to spend my money on something I would rarely use. But I can’t help that, so after awhile it just gets boring complaining about Pottermore. After awhile, it just got annoying. All I’m just trying to think positive here because everyone else is just downright negative.

  14. I suspect there will still be games and puzzles as there was before, but you will not have to complete them before you can move on as we have before. Hopefully it will also mean new spells (Standard Book Grade Two) & new Potions (Shrinking Solution for example) will be made available.

  15. I love Pottermore the way it is. I think it will lose a lot of excitement in the change. People new to the world of Harry Potter get to experience it the way I first did, one chapter at a time. When people can skip around, there will be less excitement. New people will never wonder what will happen next because they can skip ahead and know. Fans of the books will no longer get the thrill of experiencing the wonderful world of witches and wizards unfold in a new and meaningful fashion. As for skipping the required games … the games are part of the fun that is now being removed!

    • I agree with your opinion- hopefully they’ll give people the option of doing the games or not within the story. It would be really annoying if u couldnt do it at all during the story.

  16. Pottermore is great just as it is. If people could just do stuff without signing up, why would they sign up? And this out of order thing is extremely confusing. Would I confuse myself by skipping around if I didn’t know the books at all? And how would you brew potions if you skipped getting a wand and buying a cauldron? If you skipped sorting, would you get a common room? Would you be able to duel? Would you be able to go to the Slytherin common room without brewing polyjuice potion? Besides, the moment are about following Harry Potter’s journey, right? If you go to Prisoner of Azkaban without even buying your second year books, or if you haven’t even explored book one, that’s not following his footsteps. Another thing: new articles like “who is Harry Potter” is just crazy. Non- Harry Potter fans wouldn’t go to Pottermore anyway, would they? And skipping games would be declining the chance to earn points. Who doesn’t like games? Also, what about Gringotts? If people skipped chapter five in book one, they wouldn’t get a vault key and couldn’t buy anything or brew potions or get a wand. And what would someone’s avatar look like if they got sorted but didn’t have a pet? I had a discussion about these changes with my fellow Ravenclaws in the common room all who were rather upset with the changes. With these changes, Pottermore would be in chaos and all the fun would be gone.

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