In My Darkest Days, The Harry Potter & The Philosopher’s Stone PlayStation 1 Game Still Haunts Me

Hagrid and Malfoy in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone video game

My most Boomer take (except for music being too loud in most bars) is that video games these days are unnecessarily new-fangled and fancy. Give me shit graphics and characters making sound effects that can only be described as a “bog witch with IBS fighting for her life on the toilet after eating ice cream” — qualities the absolutely fucking wretched Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone PS1 game granted me when I played it religiously as a child.

OK, yes, J.K. Rowling is a transphobic toad and heaps of the characters in Harry Potter had the most atrociously racist names. Also, a number of the cast has come out of the woodwork to announce they support Miss Transphobia (Tom Felton, we were all rooting for you).

But I feel like there’s still room to acknowledge the cooked nostalgia of the Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone PS1 game. It was foul, but also exceedingly iconic.

If you played the game, the phrase “PS1 Hagrid” may ring a bell because he was one of the many cursed characters that made the game so horrific. Just a ginormous, cubic hunk of pixels with a face that looked like he was hit with a frying pan.

Those arched eyebrows were absolutely snatched, though.

But you know what wasn’t a serve? The truly demonic way the animators designed Professor Quirrell.

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Like: what the fuck was that? Did he just let out a ginormous, powerful sneeze?

And what about this?

So I was playing Harry Potter on the PSX... Didn't expect to get uncomfortable as never before...

I genuinely can’t even figure out who this character was meant to be. I think they were selling Bertie Bott’s Every Flavour Beans on Diagon Alley, which were most definitely poisoned or at the very least, only the phlegm and belly button lint flavours.

Regardless, they were definitely giving “don’t buy Bertie Bott’s Every Flavour Beans from SHEIN”.

Then there was that absolute bloody bastard Peeves. The animators clearly gave it a good crack trying to portray him as a poltergeist, but they didn’t quite try hard enough.

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I will concede Peeves got props for rocking a delicious smokey eye that would have Sky Ferreira shaking. But why did he have the same haircut as one of Prince William and Kate Middleton‘s kids? Shouldn’t he have had a little jester’s hat? Flop.

Here we have Madam Hooch, who has clearly seen man-made horrors beyond our comprehension and doesn’t know how to move forward with her life.

She also absolutely said “just fuck me up, fam” when the barber asked her what she wanted.

Meanwhile, Snape was out there looking like the bootleg version of Jason Schwartzman in Marie Antoinette. 

Forget about Harry Potter, get that bloke in a Wes Anderson or Sofia Coppola movie, STAT.

Now as a professional writer, it’s not often that I’m lost for words. But seeing the animated version of what I can only assume was meant to be the Fat Lady portrait has absolutely knocked me for six.

The uneven trap muscles. The fact the animators gave the Fat Lady proper hooters. Her absolutely disgusted face, which is eerily similar to the one I pull when my hand touches something gross when washing the dishes. The way one side of her face is almost a dead straight vertical plane. Harry Potter’s tiny, wee frame. Sheer chaos.

Vincent Crabbe, Gregory Goyle and Draco Malfoy have also stumped me. The first two were built like wardrobes while Malfoy’s head was shaped like a coffee table.

I also don’t even want to know what happened to his arm. Did he eat too much salt and was horrifically bloated, or did the animators simply give up? We’ll never know.

Well, wasn’t that a wild ride? I have so many questions for the animators who were responsible for this monstrosity, with my most pressing ones being: why? And: who hurt you?