Finally, here is the first volume of “Ask Elm” a column where I will be answering questions sent in from readers about ANYTHING and EVERYTHING to do with Pottermore. We’re gonna jump right in with the questions, if you have a question you want answered in a future column click here for the e-mail form!
Answers to some of these questions might be considered as spoilers. Read at your own risk.
“Curious, I really didn’t want to see any spoilers, but couldn’t help peeking at your screenshot of house point standings and members. It’s so pretty!
There is a list of the top four students with the most house points for each house. Take for instance, Gryffindor. The top student there has 5,660 points (according to the screenshot) and the second student has 5,586 points yet the total Gryffindor points total 6,896.
How does that work?” – FeatherBronze
Unfortunately, they are still keeping us completely in the dark about how the house points for each house are calculated. Many, at first, thought it was an average, but as the points climb higher it is obvious that that is not the case. Others have said they believe that every 100 student points equals a single point for the whole house. None of this can really be confirmed as there is no way to see the points for all 35,000 students in a given house to figure out how it is calculated.
If I find out, I will let you know and come back and amend this answer.
“What was the Sorting quiz like? What sort of questions did it ask, and how many???” – RoseSpirit120
The sorting quiz is a 7 questions personality test. It does not give the SAME questions to everyone. A friend and I sat at a table and sorted together. We only had three questions in common. Some questions are simple, with only two answer choices (ie. Dawn or Dusk?). Others give you details of a situation you might find yourself in at Hogwarts, with several possible scenarios you could go with as your response to the situation.
Some questions can not be led, but I think that some had answers that were fairly obviously skewed to one house or the other. Others I was completely lost on. Truthfully the simpler the question, the harder I found it to figure out which house might go with which answer.
I have been gathering the questions and answers given from a couple different people for a DETAILED blog entry on the sorting later on down the line once more beta testers have gained access to Pottermore. If you would like to send me yours for this study, just let me know.
“How hard is it to do potion and how long does it take?” – HexShadow44
Right now, all potions have to “brew” for 80 minutes or longer depending on the potion, but according to the Pottermore Insider these times will change due to feedback from those already inside. Potion making is tricky at first, but can be learned. For those of you already in who want help brewing check out my Potions 101 entry by clicking here.
“Have you found all of the chocolate frog cards? :O” – WalnutGold111
Actually, no, I haven’t! I’m still missing two cards. I am trying earnestly to find them on my own, but some of them are quite tricky to find. I visited one page over a dozen times and then noticed a card I didn’t know was there just yesterday. I will be posting a complete entry of card locations once I have found them all.
Cant find a WWW with details about potion making… Info on which cauldron to use for which potion, how long each potions takes to prepare in each potion, etc. I’m experimenting with it, and it would help to have some tips so that i don’t melt more expensive cauldrons
Thanks a million” – FlameBludger82
I hope the details in my Potions 101 entry were helpful, I will keep the page updated as the beta progresses and will release Potions 201 whenever we get a new potions book in Chamber of Secrets (due out 2012).
” I was wondering — do you have any idea what to do if Potions suddenly stops working altogether?” – WillowOak120
A lot of people have been having some bizarre potions glitches. Personally, I can not enter a potion from the recipe book once it is brewing without being forced to start over. I have to always enter from the cauldron page.
There are two ways to report a problem such as this to Pottermore. The official line as outlined in the Insider is to click on your Beta Feedback button and under “The page loads and works well on my screen” click one of the disagree options. Then they will return to the page for testing and repair.
Then there is MY WAY of reporting glitches to the Pottermore staff. I’m not sure why they buried this under three different menus, but you can find it in the help section by following the following link sequence:
- Help -> Other -> What’s next? -> Need more help?
This brings you to an e-mail form to send a message directly to the tech staff. I know for a fact that multiple people have received responses to their technical issues through this method.
“How much interaction is there with others on Pottermore? Is there a chat room? IM? Message boards? Do you have to know someone’s name to interact with them or is there some way to search for new folks?” – Hyphen
I sat here a minute trying to decide if I should sugar coat this answer or just be brutally honest. Honesty won out.
At the moment communication is very limited, and tightly controlled. There is no live chat, IM, or even private messaging on Pottermore. There are areas to post “comment”s around the site, but the two main places are the Great Hall and your house’s common room. Other comment boards exist for objects, characters, chapters, etc.
All of these boards are simply a string of comments with the most recent at the top and then going down in order from now until the board was created. There is no way to direct reply, or search. The only filters available are “Everyone”, “Friends”, and sometimes the “Your House” option. You can not change the order in which they appear, and though there is a link under every comment to “like” it there is no way to see what comments are more popular than others.
Moderation is incredibly stringent. Sometimes you will attempt to leave a comment and it will come up saying it is under moderation, and highlight the comment input box in red. Then, days later, they will end up approving the comment. But it will appear in the timeline so far back that now no one has any hope of reading it anyway.
I think of my common room and the Great Hall as slow moving chat rooms. You can communicate to an extent. But there is no way to use it to connect outside of the site. Moderation filters words like twitter, facebook, and google. Also, you are forbidden from posting links of any kind.
You asked about finding new people, and I will say that I have friended and been friended by people from the common room board. Once you have been connected as a friend you can see their full profile, send and receive gifts, and see their little status alerts on your gateway (home) page.
“Will you marry me?” – Anonymous
*laughs* I was so flattered when I opened this e-mail, I felt like a Pottermore princess for just a moment. Unfortunately, Mr. Anonymous, I’m already spoken for. But I’ll let you know if that changes.
“Are the graphics good?” – IceAuror8
This is a tricky question, because when most people reference graphics in a game setting it is about High Definition 3d type graphics. That is not what Pottermore is.
Pottermore is more like stepping into a digital pop-up book, with each moment in each chapter being depicted in beautiful artwork. One of the reason I have not posted any screen shots from within Pottermore is because the gorgeous artwork on each page is the real joy of the site.
That’s all I have for this volume. If you have a question you would like to ask, click here for the submission form.