The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, first impressions of 1st hour played

Let me share my first impressions of this game. Let me start by saying, that I don’t aspire to be a reviewer. I just want share  a bit of my gaming experiences. This is very late to this as 6 million copies of The Witcher 3 has been sold. But I thought I gonna share my first impressions of games I start to play, so why don’t start with The Witcher.

I got hooked in first opening sequence in the game, it was such a great voice actor. This is a area that many games overlook, sound, music and voice-acting sets the mood. If you fail with this in a game, you really doesn’t feel connected to the game experience.

I finally got this game on a sale, which I have been waiting patiently for. I read all the books of The Witcher. It makes very happy that actually use their licence and borrow from the books. To many games and movies just borrow the name and almost nothing else. Which is a damn shame.

Ciri

I was confused by title of the game, as their is no book named the same to my knowledge. The dream Geralt has in the beginning of the game borrow from the books, to some extents. It is nice to see Ciri train at Witcher fort. Ciri in the books was found in the wild by Geralt and he took her in almost like daughter. I will not share to much about Ciri about her background and where she comes from, as this is probably important part of the main game plot.

Something that really was not clear is the Witchers lack of feelings, this is part of their mutations. Geralt is always confused by his feelings, if he feels anything, this is common theme in the books. Maybe this game will touch that subject more in depth. Geralt solves this by making up his own code, a Witcher code. So he has morals. So when Geralt take Ciri in, it is quite big thing of him to do. As she was lost child in the wild, which is not like it is a very rare thing in war-plagued witcher universe. Another thing that is important part of Geralt is that he never takes sides, witchers are neutral and they mainly just interested in to kill monster for payment.

Ciri is a very special person and takes after her Witcher uncles easy. She enjoys a challenge and in a way that is not very child-like. I think the happiest period of Ciri’s life was that time she spent with the Witchers at their fort. In book’s her biggest dream is to become a real Witcher.

So it was a great moment for me to see this happy time with Ciri and her witcher uncles. Best way you could do a tutorial.

CD Project RED

One thing that is very refreshing, is the amount of good will CD Project Red earn by trying to treat their customers with respect. I can’t remember the last time I installed a game and first thing I met by was good amount of free content to install. I think it is good move and other games developers could learn from this. Even before I started the game it left me with good first impression. This signal that they actually care about their product and will support it after release. Some companies you get the feeling that game is forgotten as soon it is released.

Gameplay

This is hard to evaluate with such little time with the game. But my first impressions are positive. You have access to nice bag of tricks. For evading attacks you have this pirouette dodge/sidestep to use as fast evade and than a roll that take you away from danger. This works well, even that the dodge/sidestep thing will take some time to get used to. To use it effectively you need to do it a beginning of attack or you won’t step out of danger. The roll is a bit easier to execute. I would say it is fairly balanced.

You can parry attacks also and counter. You have access to different sword strikes, a fast one and heavier slower one. Of course we have access to the different witcher signs. Witcher signs are what sound like, simpler magic that can be performed by a kinda sign-language. If you have played WItcher 2, you will be familiar with the system.

I look forward to see more game mechanics, but my first impressions that it is a bit tighter controls and the new dodge/sidestep makes things easier. In the older witcher you only had the roll. This will hopefully translate to better fights, where the Witcher 2 was not that super fun.

Difficulty levels in The Witcher 3

For me there is only one way to play a game like this and that’s the by playing at the hardest possible difficulty level. My first fight took 15 minutes to beat, which is good measure of challenge by my standards. I am bit worried that  later in the game there would not be so much challenge. A thing almost all role-playing game suffer from, when you get access to all abilities it trivialize the game But my first fight was a lot fun. As I learn the controls better, I really hope that I will be punished by mistakes. So the game keeps me challenged.

Names of the difficulty levels

I think they have created nice way to describe the different difficulty levels in the game. I starting notice how they describe different difficulty levels in game after a friend made a blog post about it. Some games goes so far that they actually is demeaning or rude for choosing a to easy difficulty level.

  1. Just the story
    Enjoy a Smooth Ride Through the world
  2. Story and Sword
    You’re happy to Be Challenged
  3. Blood and Broken Bones!
    You’re a Seasoned Demanding Gamer
  4. Death March
    You’re Truly Insane and Loving it

Conclusion of first hour played

A hour is nothing in a game like this. But I will keep sharing my first impressions, just because it is fun to see if after a small appetizer of the game and if it lives up to that first impression. Also I suspect that I will be more tough against this game than other games. As the popularity of game is so high. That wakes childish feelings inside of me and I start looking at flaws extra hard.

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