First 30: The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

This game is entirely too big. I played something like 8 hours just in the prologue. So instead of playing all the way through and wait then to write a full review, I’m going to break it up. So here we are my thoughts on the first 30ish hours of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt.

First thought, who is this? As a female character, I was unfamiliar with jumped around in the starting point of the game swinging a sword as Geralt of Rivia (the main character) teases her, or doesn’t it’s your choice about form or something. I was instantly lost. Now a little background, I played The Witcher 2 and beat it, thought it was a pretty great game, it had its faults but overall a very positive experience. So jumping into this title years down the road I expected to be somewhat confused, but mostly able to follow along, not the case.

The lore of the Witcher universe is dark, intense and in a Game of Thrones style overly complicated fantasy mess. I don’t mean that entirely negatively. Sometimes not holding the hands of the audience in these more narratively ambitious games allows the gamer to fall into the world. Running through the forest and coming into a clearing to see a small dragon eating something feels incredible. I was captivated by the surroundings in the game. It’s the games biggest draw. An elaborate world with every little corner to explore.

Let’s start with some basics; The combat is much more action based. The one button heavy attack, one button light attack, parry, and block combat is the flavor. At first, I thought maybe a bit shallow, but with the mix of signs this game’s version of magic (something I never used in the previous installment) the combat blended nicely and I haven’t felt bored or just smashing the light attack button.

This installment is much more wide open. Once through the introduction, you are met with an open world for you to explore something that I was somewhat surprised with as the previous game I played in the series has much more contained segments. This open world has hunts, side missions, more plot and more characters for you to learn about.

So far my biggest complaint about the whole game is the traveling system. The game has a host of fast travel spots you can use to move around quickly, but you have to be at a designated sign post to use it. Maybe this is just spoiled me with Bethesda games fast travel systems but its pretty annoying. Secondly about travel, the horse. Getting on and off is a pain in the ass. Also maybe its because I’m using a controller but switching from galloping to trotting is a struggle and consistently changes if you bump into one little thing. With that being said when the horse works the feel of it is pretty amazing.

Some of you might be asking why so late on this game and the short answer. I knew a game like this would be better served for me if i waited until the full version and all the DLC was out. Lastly, this week at the risk of sounding like a prude can we stop with video game nudity. It feels cheesy. Human sexuality is a complex issue, but no one is into this right? I’ve seen enough digital body parts to last me the rest of the year, and I’m only 30 hours in.