Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is a game made by EA based on J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter franchise. The game is based on the second book and film in the series of the same name. The game follows the plot of the book for the most part, although random missions were thought up to add length to the game, like multiple missions where you have to save or help other pupils.
The game starts out at Ron Weasley's house, where some chores must be taken care of in which the player will play some mini-games.
After that, the player gets sent to Diagon Alley. Here, the game actually adds the first additional gameplay sequence by expanding on the little side trip Harry makes.
After this sequence, the player gets taken to Hogwarts, where the game begins in earnest.
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets' gameplay is somewhat similar to that of Bully ( Canis Canem Edit or Bully: Scholarship Edition), Rockstar's over-the-top highschool simulator.
The player will need to take classes to advance the story. Upon taking one of the classes, the player will be sent into a backroom of the classroom in order to retrieve a spellbook associated with that class. The player will come across a spell that turns giant blue eggs into birds if the "Transfiguration" class is taken, while the "Incendio" spell that sets object aflame will be learned in the "Defence againt the Dark Arts" class.
In between classes, players can also take missions from pupils. The game has a day/night cycle, and some missions must be done during nighttime. When it's dark, prefects will roam the halls of Hogwarts, as well as the grounds outside. Like in the books, there is always a contest going on between the houses in points, which are gained by doing things well in the classes. If the player is caught by a prefect or Filch however, some points will be lost. Magical trick items like dungbombs and certain spells to distract these watchmen can be purchased.
While missions are not being done, Hogwarts castle and the grounds surrounding it can be freely explored.
There are some odd jobs that can be done as well. the player can become champion of the dueling club, trade stuff with fellow pupils, attempt to make other houses lose points and run people over with a broom.
- The player will eventually receive a broomstick, the Nimbus 2000. This broom can be obtained at any time while outside, though not in missions where the player has to go to the Forbidden Forest. This can actually be used to make certain missions easier, for instance; in one mission, school prefects must be avoided while trying to get across the school grounds in order to get to Hagrid's house. The broom can be used to fly across the school grounds, avoiding that part of the mission entirely. The broomstick can also be used to reach otherwise inaccessible part of the castle, like certain rooftops.
- There are huge differences between the PlayStation and PlayStation 2/Xbox versions of the game. For instance, while Harry travels to Diagon Alley with flu powder, things go wrong. On PlayStation, the player must attempt to keep Harry on the middle of the slide with the analog stick. On PlayStation 2 however, this sequence is not present at all, and the player simply gets dropped off in a cutscene. This is one of the few examples of the PlayStation game having more content in a gameplay sequence. For the rest of the game, this tends to be the other way around.