2015 is a big year for gamers. So many games filled with potential, coming both from the AAA and indie scene, are on their way. One of the most anticipated ones, “The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt”, is finally out. This AAA, high fantasy RPG aimed to emerge us in its beautiful, massive world filled with characters, side quests, and a superb story to end the trilogy. Luckily, I’m here to tell you that for the most part, The Witcher 3 delivers in every single aspect. And outside of a few minor problems, it is just as good as it promised to be.
The first thing I noticed when playing the game, is just how good it looks. The Witcher takes full advantage of its fantasy setting, as it presents an incredibly beautiful world. Skies are full of colors, water physics relaxed me, and riding my horse while seeing dozens of trees getting pushed by the wind felt great. On the more technical side, the game usually maintains a steady framerate, without a lot of pop up. It’s worth mentioning that outside of when you start the game or when you die, The Witcher has no loading screens. Meaning that you could go from one end of a map to the other, without having to wait.
On The Witcher 3, we follow the story of Geralt, a witcher who is on the search of his disciple, Ciri. He must find her, before The Wild Hunt (the bad guys) do. As someone who didn’t play the first two games, I was afraid of not understanding what was going on. The game does its best at explaining what happened in one or two cutscenes. While certainly not ideal, I understood why Geralt’s mission was so important. The story is pretty good. It tells an emotional story, while delivering some unexpected twists and turns. While riding through the main quests, I constantly found myself ignoring them, so I could explore. And that brings me to the star of the show… the game’s huge open world.
CD Project Red managed to create a game 30% bigger than Skyrim. This is a particularly respectable accomplishment, and they should definitely be praised for it. Thankfully, the game also has many extra activities. And by many, I mean way too many. From side quests, to undiscovered locations, to an awesome card game, some knuckle fights and other mini games, The Witcher has an extraordinary amount of content. This is not by any means a bad thing. While it was overwhelming for the first couple of hours, I eventually realized I would never see everything the game had to offer, and I was fine with it. That’s when the fun started. I dived into the game and I didn’t want to come out. I felt like I was a part of the universe, and I had an important role to play in it. Helping a sick man, killing monsters who were attacking villagers, or rescuing a kid in danger was great. I really did feel like Batman’s great, great grandfather.
My main problem with the game comes from the way it controls. Geralt feels extremely stiff and heavy, an issue I also share with the Assassin’s Creed series. Many times I wouldn’t be able to pick some loot up because I’d go over it, and then I’d spend about 10 second trying to get to the loot without walking past it. I eventually just got used to it. And while it’s not a game breaker, it definitely is something that annoyed me. The other minor issue I have with the game is that the story is not just as epic as I thought it’d be. Like I said before: story’s pretty good, but not great.
When all is said and done, people will look back at “The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt” with respect and appreciation. An incredible world filled with a crazy amount of content and a pretty good story make this game an early Game Of The Year Contender. And while some small issues hold it back from perfection, I still consider this a must-play.