This is a game that has so much to offer. Almost too much. I don’t know how to finish it. I can’t finish it. The game has a sense of urgency but that urgency is set aside while I go help a villager tie their sacks. Or go find some random item for someone; when I should be hunting the witch that is North of this village.
CD Projekt Red have delivered a wonderful game.
Not perfect, because no game is perfect. But this one gets pretty close. My issues with the game are little things. Sometimes the combat is exhausting, and some of the User Interface is less than ideal. But Witcher 3 more then makes up for that in the scope of the game.
The game is huge. The map is massive and there is so much to do. Sometimes it feels like too much to do. Once I realized how much there was to do I stopped aiming for 100% completion. It’s impossible. Or at least effectively impossible. I am sure there are those who have completed every quest and every little adventure. But for us mere mortals, this game has more then enough to offer us.
The premise is basically a supernatural version of the plot of Taken.
You have to find someones daughter, while fighting unnatural forces of evil. You are a Witcher. A hunter of evil. Of all things unnatural.
But that main narrative of saving someone near and dear to you, isn’t the biggest part of this game. The map is the biggest. But the most fun are the side quests. Of which there are plenty. Each side quests teaches you about that area, its history, its people, its nature. And despite the size of the map no area is left unused. No area lacks a fulfilling side quest, and the arenas are well designed leaving you with a pleasant experience no matter where you are.
Each side quest has a feeling of importance.
The decisions you make will affect the main stories outcome. No quest is a simple throw away. They are not hour fillers. They are fun, well thought out and never a waste of time.
Even within the side quests there are other smaller aspects of the game.
They created a card game that was played within Witcher. It’s name is Gwent. If the name sounds familiar it’s because that card game is getting made into a full game. CD Projekt Red managed to make a mini game that has turned into a full blown game. Not the first time this has happened but it is nonetheless impressive.
The Witcher 3 put so much into their game, I don’t know how they did it. It is full. Like almost bursting at the seams full.
The crafting system is immense.
It requires a plan. Blueprints are easy to come by but the materials are the bottleneck. The Northern lands are massive and finding some of the special materials is hard. Unless you know where to look. But your average gamer does not know that. Most just Google it.
On top of the exhaustive crafting system there is an equally detailed leveling system.
Geralt, your character, has several different abilities. You have 4 different main categories that you can pour points into. And 3 of those categories get even more in depth. The leveling system is too slow, and without enough rewards to make leveling fun. Most new levels come with a percentage increase on an ability. That’s it. It makes leveling tedious.
The crafting is where you get the biggest improvements in ability.
The system is detailed and in depth. For people who love a deep crafting system, you are in for a treat. Those of us who would like a easy crafting system will just have to endure it. The system gets the job done. And thats all that matters. The crafting system was a design decision that has made many people happy. And others not as happy. I am in the second camp.
The story is well written.
Props to the writers. Geralt is a complicated character who has prejudices and issues. None of which override your own decision making ability. I felt a connection with Geralt. When I first looked at him on promotional material I thought he was a one dimensional typical RPG tough guy.
But in fact, he is only that guy as much as you make him. He can also be sensitive, and caring. He isn’t heartless. In fact, he has a warmth in him. He loves other people. That is clear in the way that he puts his life on the line for other people time and time again. Even when he doesn’t have to.
The beauty of his character is that he is his own man.
But also malleable. You can change him. At the beginning of the game he is a generic character. Exactly what his box art looked like. And at the end of the game he is a complicated character. Like a real person. With bias and prejudices. But the ones you chose.
Who is this game for?
This game is great for anyone who loves RPG’s and wants hundreds of hours out of their game. Someone who doesn’t feel a need to always be online and don’t enjoy multiplayer. This game is great for both casual players and hardcore players.
If you love story and want a game with lore and in depth characters. You want a big world full of little things for you to explore. Somewhere you can immerse yourself in and escape. Get this game.
But if you want fast paced action, or you want to play with your friends. Or you don’t like a little bit of grinding, then don’t get this game.