There are lots of LEGO Harry Potter Years 1 – 4 characters to unlock, and to get them all, you'll need to play through all of the main story and tried out lots of free play challenges and secrets. Finding all the hidden characters will also get you a trophy/achievement, so they're worth hunting down. If you need a bit of help finding some of the more elusive characters, or just want to know how to unlock each one, we've got you covered with this LEGO Harry Potter Years 1 – 4 character guide.
This guide is broken up rather simply – it goes stage by stage and explains what you need to have to unlock the hidden character and where to find it. Generally speaking, some of them can be gotten while playing levels but it’s usually best to focus on simply completing the levels instead of searching them. In many cases you will have to revisit the level in Free Play to unlock a specific character or two so waiting until you meet all of the requirements before bothering to revisit will spare you replaying each level yet more times than necessary.
Upon starting up the game you will automatically obtain the trio of Harry Potter, Ron and Hermoine. However none of them have any special abilities that are helpful to begin with. As they learn abilities through the years at school more abilities will unlock on the characters so it’s going to be a bit before they’re as useful as they can be. By and large the most useful abilities to have are strength (Hagrid), Reducto (most wizards) and Dark Magic (any Death Eater). Ron / Hermoine’s respective pets will come in handy in a few situations as well and the short characters come up a few times but the above trio of abilities are ones you will want ASAP, so buy the first Dark Magic user you can.