Polish developer CD Projekt Red may have thrust themselves into the spotlight with The Witcher 2, but they’re intent on outdoing themselves with The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. As impressive as the massive game world being constructed for next-gen hardware already seems, populating it with worthwhile content is the real challenge – and where the game holds the most promise.
Although the titular Wild Hunt has yet to be highlighted in extreme detail, the many human and monstrous villains of The Witcher 3 again star in the latest screenshots out of Gamescom 2013. They may cover much of the same ground as previous images, but that doesn’t make them any less impressive.
The past few weeks have certainly been fruitful for RPG fans hungry for more information regarding the third – but not final – chapter in the story of Geralt of Rivia; we were more than sold on The Witcher 3 after seeing it firsthand at E3 2013, and the stunning cinematic trailer viewed at the show has finally been revealed for the world to see.
Besides the trailer, the developer also showed off a few of the game’s legendary monster battles, specifically one with a Fiend (the were-elk, which uses its third eye to draw Geralt into a dream world) and a dark forest spirit known as a Leshen (with a body made of branches, topped by an elk skull). Those same monsters – and the ensuing fights – have been featured prominently in CDPR’s assets to this point, and the newest gallery out of Gamescom is no exception. Have a look:
Along with the monsters come a few more looks at the design of The Witcher 3‘s massive in-game environments. Vastly larger than any game CDPR has made before, the concept artwork shows how many different locations and aesthetics the developers hope to include. While the game’s many cities and fortified ports look to be carefully constructed, players may choose to abandon main story quests, and launch into the wilderness for weeks on end for a lengthy stretch of monster-hunting.
It’s that open-ended approach to both story and mechanics that the studio is hoping will take The Witcher 3 above the heights of Dragon Age or Skyrim, and if the quality of gameplay we’ve seen ourselves can be consistent across the entire project, they’ve got a good chance of accomplishing that goal.
The central plot and cast of characters will hopefully be detailed soon, but for now, the screenshots should appease any fan who isn’t already tired of looking at a Fiend-fight in high definition. What area of the game do you hope to see detailed next? The procedural gameplay encounters, or the scripted story sequences?
The Witcher 3 will be released on PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 in late 2014.
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