The Witcher 3 – A Preview
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The launch of the third part of the smash hit video game The Witcher is only a few months away. Culture.pl offers a preview of this upcoming Polish production, the previous part of which was of interest even to the White House. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt will feature, amongst others, a Slavic-themed world and the voice of Game of Thrones actor Charles Dance.
A Great Example
The Witcher is a series of computer role-playing games set in a fantasy world invented by the acclaimed Polish writer Andrzej Sapkowski, who published a series of novels and short stories under the same title. Sapkowski started writing the Witcher stories back in the 80s, at a time when computer games weren’t nearly as popular as today. When the Warsaw-based company CD Projekt RED was releasing the first part of the Witcher video game series in 2007 it was a different era. Since then several million copies of the games from this series have been sold worldwide, causing excitement among role-playing fans.
Among those who own a copy of a Witcher video game is a certain Barack Obama, current U.S. president. During his 2011 visit to Warsaw he received a copy of The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings as a gift from the then Polish prime minister Donald Tusk. Later, when Mr. Obama returned to Poland, he said that The Witcher is “(…) a great example of Poland’s place in the new global economy”.
A Story-Driven Game
The next part of Obama’s gift will remain faithful to the elements that earned the series its popularity, which are the main character, the gritty world known from Sapkowski’s books and the originality of the plotlines. Here is what Karolina Stachyra, a writer at CD Projekt RED, has to say about the upcoming part of the series:
In The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, you play as Geralt of Rivia, one of the last witchers -- monster hunters protecting humans from deadly creatures inhabiting the land. The world is ravaged by war as the kingdoms of the north are being invaded by the Empire of Nilfgaard. Geralt must navigate a maze of hostile forces and embark on a journey that will lead him to confront a mythical and ancient foe - a ghastly cavalcade of riders known as the Wild Hunt.
The plotline plays a central role in The Witcher 3 and that is why this production is what you call a story-driven game. The decisions you make as a player have an impact on the way the plot unfolds. Sometimes there might be some tough choices to make. These choices may concern important characters from Sapkowski’s books that have been absent in the previous instalments. In the third part Yennnefer, Geralt’s love, and princess Ciri will finally appear. Meeting Yennefer might be problematic to Geralt as in the beginning of part three he is still involved with his romantic acquaintance from the previous parts - Triss Merigold. At this point it might be worth mentioning that The Witcher 3 will be a game with adult content.
Apart from following the plot, in The Witcher 3, you can also lead the average life of a witcher, meaning you can hack and slash ferocious monsters for money. Sword fighting is an essential part of the game and this time around the combat interface has been modified entirely.
The combat system in The Witcher 3: Wild hunt was completely revamped -- we’ve put emphasis on making it as fluid, tactical and responsive as possible. It’s really intimate -- you vs. your opponent(s). Geralt can now parry attacks and deflect projectiles, instead of just running around and rolling. Players are able to string different types of attacks and create lethal combinations, and they can also employ various tactics to slay beasts that have different strengths and weaknesses (…) – says Andrzej Kwiatkowski, a gameplay designer at CD Projekt RED.
the witcher 3
Among the dangerous foes a player might encounter in The Witcher 3 is the powerful Leshen. This monster can assume different forms and has deadly claws and long sharp teeth. When cornered it can turn into a murder of crowes. The Leshen, like many other elements of the game’s world, is linked to ancient Slavic mythology. This monster was based on a leshy, otherwise known as a boruta, which in old Slavic beliefs was a forest demon that ruled over animals and trees. The Witcher series generally has a medieval, Slavic ambience and this is said to be an important component of this series’ great appeal. In part three this ambience will be strengthened, amongst others, by the music, which was made in collaboration with the band Percival, a group that draws inspiration from old Slavic folk music and uses such traditional instruments as baglamas or Byzantine lyres.
The voice of Charles Dance, which will be in the game, will also add to the atmosphere of The Witcher 3. The actor who plays Tywin Lannister in the popular TV series A Game of Thrones lent his voice to the character of Emperor Emhyr Var Emreis.
The Witcher 3 will be a single-player experience and will not have an online play mode. However those who are hungry for some online Witcher action will soon get what they want. Cd Projekt RED is about to release The Witcher Battle Arena, a free multiplayer online game for mobile devices set in the Witcher world. The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt, will also be out soon. The premiere of this game is scheduled for the 19th of May 2015.
Author: Marek Kępa