The Witcher is Upon Us Again (Review)
So I have been playing the Witcher for the last few days now - between studying for my exams... oops... - and what a ride it has been so far.
The content is simply mind blowing and the map is as large as they said. But, the game is difficult to get used to in the beginning. This is not your typical hack and slash combo building super move unloading blood bath, it's a more tactical and well planned bloodbath. The mobs of monsters, deserters, looters, peasants and nobles that you have to cut down on your journey to solve the mystery that is the Wild Hunt need to be carefully analysed before making a move. This involves all sorts of goodies like applying poisons and oils to your blades, prepping a couple grenades and making sure you can stay alive in the fight. You then proceed in to the fray (a warning; on the two hardest difficulties, you may be getting hit once or twice before dying early on), carefully parry and dodge attackers strikes and counter with some well-placed flurries or a couple big swings. Finally loot the spoils of war and leave the mess of decapitated bodies feeling rather proud of yourself - it feels great coming walking away without a scratch!
The content worriers need not worry, as promised by CD Projekt Red there is well over 100 hours of gameplay here to let you really sink your claws in. As a bonus, there are also 16 free DLCs! As stated on their website, CD Projekt Red said the following: "everyone who buys Wild Hunt will receive 16 specially prepared DLCs absolutely for free, regardless of platform. You don’t have to pre-order, you don’t have to buy any special edition to get them -- if you own a copy of Wild Hunt, they’re yours." Now this is what gamers like to hear!!
The majority of the content is picked up from bounty boards in the villages and towns spread throughout the Northern Realms as well as happening upon a few quest givers along your journey. I recommend spending a bit of time completing the question marks that pop up on the map after visiting a bounty board as these can prove to be a good source of experience (provided you don't out level them) as well as diagrams to legendary craftable items. There is also the benefit of happening upon some comedy along these side missions too.
The soundtrack really helps to keep the game feeling like I was on a tangent in a blockbuster movie with a massive budget to back it up. The game simply delivers the feeling of being part of the story.
The only drawback I have found from the game so far is that not everything is lootable. On a few occasions I have needed a bit of bread and ale to quench my thirst when far from a tavern and my saddlebags have run empty, only to walk in to a small hut and see bounties of glorious fruit, mead, bread and cheese laid out for someone's supper, reached out to the oasis with watery mouth... And discovered it’s all cosmetic. That scene from The Interview springs to mind when James Franco discovered all the fruit was fake. Alas, this is not Skyrim, and I did find some chow soon.
All in all, this game is great. And definitely deserved of all the accolades and high scores they have picked up so far. If you are returning to the franchise, a newcomer or just a fan of RPGs, this is right up your alley.
If you have not already had a peek, the Wither 3 YouTube channel has some pretty cool content available at https://www.youtube.com/user/WitcherGame. The Facebook page is also quite active at https://www.facebook.com/thewitcher.
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is available at all major retail stores, Origin and Steam... And even uPlay…
If you stepped in to the role of the professional witcher, let us know your thoughts in the comments below!