Pottermore to enter next phase of the site

Image courtesy of Pottermore

Image courtesy of Pottermore

Pottermore announced last week that they will be closing the current site and relaunching pottermore.com completely. 

Though a major overhaul has been hinted by the site for months now, the team confirmed the news with fans via Twitter and Owl Notification. According to the message, part one of Pottermore, focusing on Harry Potter’s story and life at Hogwarts, will soon end. This conclusion will make way for a new site, focused beyond Hogwarts and on the broader wizarding world created by author J.K. Rowling.

From Pottermore:

Soon, Pottermore as you know it will transform into a new and reimagined website, giving you the opportunity to discover even more about J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World.

Part one of Pottermore’s story, in which you have enjoyed the depiction of Harry’s story through illustrated ‘Moment’ artwork and experienced life within Hogwarts, is ending. We are now preparing for part two of Pottermore’s story to begin. As J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World expands, so too will Pottermore, becoming a place to imagine more and share in a world beyond the seven book series.

Presumably, the expansion the notification mentions alludes to Fantastic Beasts as well as the upcoming stage play, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. Its a message that’s open to much interpretation and nothing else is known about the site’s prospects.

Pottermore assured Twitter followers that the site will still feature artwork, but the Moments themselves will change. J.K. Rowling’s exclusive content will still be available, but we suspect the presentation to be different. Nevertheless, Pottermore promises the new site will be packed with new features.

Pottermore is also making available a Certificate feature for fans as a memento for their time on the site. It encapsulates the Pottermore experience, listing the user’s membership anniversary, username, their wand, house, and house points. It is printable until 1:00pm BST on September 16.

The site unveiled the final Moments of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in June, but otherwise had an unusually mum summer, besides the addition of a wizarding timeline. It seems they were hard to work on this new site. We’ll wait and see…

As a reminder, Pottermore will announce the winner of the last House Cup this week, on Wednesday.

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Pottermore adds “History of Magic” timeline to the homepage

On Tuesday, Pottermore unveiled a new “Timeline of the Wizarding World”, a feature on pottermore.com that traces the History of Magic through noteworthy people and their accomplishments from antiquity to the 20th century.

As a mark of the new timeline, an icon of a book, with the title “History of Magic” was added on the Map homepage on Pottermore.

The Timeline is filled with familiar names, like Ignatia Wildsmith and Celestina Warbeck, as well as the not so well-known, like Leopoldina Smethwyck, the first British witch to referee a Quidditch match. The names are connected with lightning bolts of lineage tracing wizarding history all the way up to the boy with the lightning bolt scar.

Screenshot 2015-06-10 at 02.47.59 AM

Users are encouraged to use the timeline to discover unfamiliar characters from the wizarding world, from the inventor of the Sneakoscope (Edgar Strougler) to the first landlady of the Leaky Cauldron (Daisy Dotteridge), as well as build up their knowledge on the history of magic. In their announcement, Pottermore implied that the timeline will be updated over time.

As one would expect, the list features Newt Scamander, the famed magizoologist and author of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. However, his listing reveals that the wizard is still alive today. Previously, his status was unknown and he was assumed deceased by fans.

Screenshot 2015-06-10 at 02.48.34 AM

This revelation is significant in relation to the upcoming film trilogy based off of Fantastic Beasts. Will elderly Newt Scamander make an appearance? We’ll have to wait and see to find out!

Visit Pottermore.com to explore the Timeline of the Wizarding World, to read new information from J.K. Rowling, and so much more…

 

Pottermore Updates: More potion ingredients, next House Cup date, updated Terms and Conditions

PottermoreThis past week, Pottermore made a few updates regarding the site…

First, the team rewarded fans on Tuesday with more Galleons and Potion ingredients, scattered in Moments across the site. See below to find out where to find these ingredients and Galleons — if you’re an avid fan, you’re going to want to look.

Then, in their Facebook announcement for this addition, Pottermore also mentioned that the Pottermore House Cup would be rewarded at the end of May. It will be the eighth time Pottermore awards the Cup to members of the Hogwarts Houses, and the reward is likely to be either new Moments from Deathly Hallows (predictably looking at a July launch) or the Patronus quiz in Order of the Phoenix, which has been hinted by J.K. Rowling.

In other news, Pottermore also updated their Terms & Conditions, and policies for Privacy & Cookies and Child Privacy & Safety. It will be the first update to the terms since the site re-launched in July 2013; the update was made to reflect the recent changes to the site, including the prohibition of commenting and uploading artwork, as well as the deletion of the Pottermore Insider. The changes are in effect from May 13, 2015 at 12 noon GMT.

For Pottermore Users — Where to Find the New Ingredients:

Arriving at Diagon Alley

The Journey to Hogwarts

Hagrid’s Wooden House

The Hooded Figure

Into the Forbidden Forest

Two Enormous Green Eyes

The Weasleys

Dumbledore Returns

The Magical Menagerie

The Three Broomsticks

The Firebolt is Confiscated

The Shrieking Shack

Buckbeak’s Rescue

Sirius and Buckbeak Escape

The Campsite

The Carriage

Hibernating Skrewts

Professor Grubby-Plank

Merpeople

King’s Cross

Pottermore closes down Insider blog, ends ability to comment, upload artwork

Image courtesy of Pottermore

Image courtesy of Pottermore

Today, three years from the launch of Pottermore.com, Pottermore entered a new stage of development by making significant changes to the site.

First and foremost, starting today, Pottermore users cannot comment in any spaces on the site, upload personal artwork, or post a status on their Profile. All comments posted previously have been deleted. According to the Pottermore team, “A number of factors led to these decisions. As part of our ongoing review, we concluded that some features were no longer properly serving the interests of our users.” Additionally, the Pottermore team cited the increasing challenge of monitoring the posts as factoring in their decision. With users’ privacy and security at heart, the Pottermore team decided to deactivate these functions.

Secondly, Pottermore has shut down the Pottermore Insider blog, which served as a source of official news and updates regarding the site since its initial launch in 2011. The Pottermore team felt that these updates  “would be better channelled in other ways in the future.”

Finally, the team released a progress update on Deathly Hallows, as well as a statement on J.K. Rowling’s thoughts on the changes.

When are Moments from Deathly Hallows coming and what happens afterwards – is it the end of Pottermore?
We’re not far away from releasing new Moments from Deathly Hallows for you to explore, along with more new writing by J.K. Rowling. As for what’s after that, it’s certainly not the end – in fact, far from it. Make sure you check back here often to get regular news on our plans.

What does J.K. Rowling think about these recent changes?
On a day-to-day basis J.K. Rowling entrusts the running of Pottermore to a dedicated management team. However, she was consulted about these changes and of course supports the decision to keep pottermore.com a safe and secure environment for everyone.

Pottermore announced these changes in a post on their site in a new area devoted for site updates. The complete post offers a list of question and answers regarding these new updates. This new page will be the source of all further technical information about the site, much like the Pottermore Insider’s Platform updates page. It can be accessed in the toolbar on the Pottermore homepage.

Throwback: Pottermore announces new ability to share comments beneath Moments, book pages, and J.K. Rowling entries

Today’s news is quite contrary to previous updates to the site. The last time Pottermore decided to change their site, in July 2013, the comment function was increased as to help user/community interactivity. However, clearly moderating comments has become an increasing issue over the recent months, with roleplaying, inappropriate content, and abuse prevalent in the comment sections (visit PottermoreWatch on Facebook to see). So though these changes hinder community interaction, it might serve the greater good after all.

Pottermore News will report on any additional news as it comes, so come back soon for the latest. In the meantime, follow our Twitter for realtime updates about Pottermore.

What

Pottermore adds new Beautification Potion and Bertie Botts Badge

This week, Pottermore added a new potion and achievement badge to the site for users to enjoy.

On Thursday, Pottermore published its Guide to Potions Class to the Insider, which gives helpful hints to aspiring Potion Masters. Along with this guide, once again Pottermore shortened the length of time it takes to brew a potion, and they changed the number of house points a potion is worth.

Most significantly, they added Zygmunt Budge’s Beautification Potion, straight out of the Book of Potions. It is a two-part potion that takes at least an hour and a half to brew, depending on your cauldron. Ingredients for the potion cost a total of 24 galleons and include the “Perfect Rose” and “Morning Dew”. It is worth 40 house points, so its well worth the time and effort!

In honor of Ron Weasley’s birthday, Pottermore made a new “Bertie Bott’s Collectors Badge” available to users to earn.

beansFrom the Insider:

From the disgusting (fish, phlegm, troll bogies and tripe) to the delicious (chocolate, cherry, marshmallow and marmalade), every mouthful is a risk when it comes to Bertie Bott’s Every-Flavour Beans. In celebration of Ron’s birthday today, we’ve a present he would certainly relish: you can now earn our new Bertie Bott’s Collectors Badge by finding 35 Every-Flavour Beans on pottermore.com. If you’ve a sweet-tooth you may already have discovered 30, but we’ve just hidden five new flavours in Moments across the site – can you sniff them all out?

For help, Pottermore offered a hint to finding one of the new beans: “it’s delicious (although not quite Drooble’s) and its flavour is Moste Potente…” and encourages users to keep an eye on their Moment progress bar to look out for Moments that are not complete now because of the beans.

Visit Pottermore.com to enjoy these new updates, along with never-before released from J.K. Rowling about the world of Harry Potter.

J.K. Rowling on Twitter: Patronus test coming soon to Pottermore

Back in September, J.K. Rowling hinted on Twitter at the possibility for a function on Pottermore that would allow users to find out their Patronus. Today, the Harry Potter author confirmed that a Patronus test is in the works and will make its way on the site soon.

A fan tweeted at J.K. Rowling, asking, “Is a Patronus quiz for Pottermore ever going to be created?” The author’s response:

So, the long-awaited test will soon be a reality! Since Pottermore’s launch in 2011, lots of fans have asked for the option to choose their Patronus. This is the first substantial news reporting that the option is coming, besides the tweet in September.

Screenshot 2015-02-12 at 06.35.23 PMWhen Pottermore released Moments from Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix in October, fans were disappointed that the site did not include the opportunity to choose a Patronus, as the fifth book is when Dumbledore’s Army is taught how to perform the Patronus Charm. However, in the moment from chapter 27, in the margin of the illustration, there is a text box and artwork titled, “Expecto Patronum,” saying, “It’s forming…”, hinting at something to come.

Along with this Patronus tweet, this past week J.K. Rowling answered a few fans’ Harry Potter-related questions on Twitter. The author shared the fate of Hagrid’s dog, Fluffy, and this 140-character history of 12 Grimmauld Place. She answered a question about Horcruxes and the Resurrection Stone, too. But, she didn’t stop there, commenting on the television special, Magic Beyond Words, a 2010 biographical film on her own life (1, 2). And she also replied with this amazing response to a question about writer’s block. Lesson learned, keep an eye out on her Twitter — you never know what’s she’s going to say.

What are you looking forward to with the Patronus test? How do you think the test will be set-up? Tell us in the comments below!

Pottermore adds new spell in honor of Snape’s birthday

Copyright of Pottermore

Copyright of Pottermore

In honor of Professor Snape’s birthday today, Pottermore added a new spell to the Dueling Club.

The Smokescreen Spell, or Fumos, is a defensive spell; the Insider predicts it was useful to Snape when necessary.

Previously, for Halloween, the site added four incantations for users to play in Dueling Club, including the Tickling Charm, the Levitation Charm, the Freezing Charm and the Disarming Charm. All spells are available on pottermore.com by clicking “Dueling Club” on the Map.

Regarding Severus Snape, in the most recent update on Pottermore, J.K. Rowling cleared up rumors that the Potions Master was a vampire — read it here.

Happy Birthday Professor Snape! You will always be in our heart.

New spells and alterations to Wizard Duel on Pottermore

On Friday, Pottermore announced plans to unveil four new spells on October 31 as part of their “Trick or Treat” Halloween celebration.

Wands at the ready! Pottermore users will soon be able to duel with Rictusempra, Immobulus, Expelliarmus, and Wingdarium Leviosa in the first major addition to Wizard Duel since Pottermore’s beta launch in 2011.

From the Insider:

During her time at Hogwarts as Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher, Dolores Umbridge notoriously prevented students from practising and performing spells during her lessons. Luckily, Pottermore students are actively encouraged to cast spells in Duelling Club, and we’re thrilled to announce that there’ll be four new spells to try out very soon.

newspells

Earlier this week, Pottermore announced alterations to the Wizard Duel feature “to make duelling more enjoyable” and “to make it more difficult for unfair game play to take place.”

As most Pottermore users know, to perform a spell, you have to type out or click on certain letters that spell out the incantation. Before, the letters would stay the same every time, but now the letters are randomized with each new game.

The Insider wrote about another alteration as well:

The second alteration is to vary the speed at which the power of the spell, shown by the pulsing circle around each letter, grows – so now the speed of your reactions matters more than ever!

Pottermore reasoned the alterations as to keep all activity on Pottermore fair for users to enjoy. The team also encouraged any users to contact them if they encounter any suspicious behavior on the site.

Are you excited to try out the new spells? How do you feel about the alterations to Wizard Duel? Tell us in the comments below!

J.K. Rowling hints at Pottermore Patronus test on Twitter

J.K. Rowling (2014)

J.K. Rowling (2014)

Gone are the days when pen and paper were J.K. Rowling’s only priority…

The Harry Potter and Casual Vacancy author has been very active on Twitter these past few days, continuing to weigh in on the Scottish Referendum debate as well as replying to fans.

In the midst of all her tweets (there were a lot), she responded to one fan’s comment about wanting a test that would let someone choose their Patronus, tweeting, “Keep watching Pottermore…”

Since the start, Pottermore fans have been asking for a test like the Sorting Hat and wand questionnaire to choose their Patronus (or, at the very least, the option to choose their Patronus), and this is the first hint that it might become a reality. The test would likely be included in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, when members of Dumbledore’s Army learn how to cast Patronuses. Relatedly, we also would not be surprised if the prize for the upcoming House Cup would be the first chapters of Order of the Phoenix, like Pottermore did last year around this time for Goblet of Fire. However, Dumbledore’s Army isn’t established until later in the book, so it’s unlikely that it would be in the first installment.

Moreover, be sure to keep an eye out on J.K. Rowling’s Twitter. As we said, she’s been replying to lots of fans and Scotland debaters, so there is a chance that she might reply to you. (!) The author even tweeted Luna Lovegood actress Evanna Lynch, in an amazing conversation that you can see here. To see more of her tweets and replies, click here.

What do you think your Patronus would be? How do you feel about this option being included on Pottermore? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below!

Update on Story Navigator

Image courtesy of Pottermore

Image courtesy of Pottermore

Over the past few months, some Pottermore users have experienced issues with the Story Navigator function on Pottermore.com. The Pottermore Team has been working to resolve the issue for weeks and they have now provided another update on their progress.

From the Pottermore Insider:

Over the past few weeks, some members of the Pottermore community have been experiencing an issue where the Story Navigator disappears at certain points of progression through the Moments.

This particular bug, which seemed to be more difficult to catch than a Demiguise, has been located by our engineers and we are working to fix the issue. We’ll update you here on this Site Updates page on our progress.

We’re also working on other suggestions mentioned by members of the Pottermore community including improvements to games, the ability to delete Owl Notifications once they’ve been read, and reviewing our customer service process.

Along with a lot of users, we’re hoping the Pottermore Team will get all the problems with the Story Navigator fixed soon.

What do you think about Pottermore taking up community members’ suggestions? What would you suggest to the Pottermore Team for a better experience? Tell us in the comments below!