I’m beginning to think The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings has rather spoiled its successor for me. I played it to death, exploring its every path be it geographic, narrative or combative. I talked to everyone, upgraded everything, was the perfect gentleman and definitive asshole at every juncture. In short, it’s shitting brilliant.
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, inevitably, looks like more of the same. Obviously this is a good thing – great characterisation, fabulously rendered environments, meticulously realised worlds, fluid combat, meaningful customisation, morally ambiguous choices. Wonderful.
The addition of a staggeringly large open world and literally hundreds of quests should have me salivating at the Wild Hunt’s very mention. But you know what I see?
The same old swordplay, the same old bombs, the same old signs, the same old techniques, the same old character animations and (perhaps most damming of all) the same old strangely, slightly awkward dialogue from the Witchers’ Witcher, Geralt of Have-Sex-With-All-The-Beauties.
I mean Rivia.
Geralt of Rivia.
Yeah, yeah, I’m overlooking those charged signs, that new dodge mechanic, those gory new finishers and the general gag-inducing levels of polish. I just kind of thought that in a bid to expand the Witcher’s scope, CD Projekt RED would also spare some manpower to refine and improve upon some, admittedly, already great gameplay.
Like I said, these are the niggling complaints of a man already spoiled by Assassins of Kings immense quality. But this is the third gameplay demo I’ve seen. And I’m yet to be wowed…
Still plenty of time though, as The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt doesn’t hack store shelves into tiny pink bits until February 24th 2015.