May 24, 2011

The Witcher 2: The Review

Back in Octo­ber 2007 rel­a­tive­ly unknown devel­op­er, CD Pro­jekt with Atari released The Witch­er.   The orig­i­nal pro­vid­ed one of the most authen­tic, orig­i­nal and cap­ti­vat­ing RPG expe­ri­ences ever to land on the PC or any plat­form for that mat­ter.  The game was not with­out its prob­lems how­ev­er as it con­tained many graph­i­cal glitch­es, extreme­ly long load­ing times between sequences and a cen­sored ver­sion released in North Amer­i­ca.  The com­pa­ny respond­ed to these issues by not only releas­ing an updat­ed ver­sion of the game but adding in new quests, graph­i­cal enhance­ments and reduced load­ing times but pro­vid­ing it free to cus­tomers who had already pur­chased the game.  In fact CD Pro­jekt spent over 1 mil­lion dol­lars resolv­ing the issues its cus­tomers pre­sent­ed to them.   Ever since The Witch­er was released fans have been anx­ious­ly await­ing a con­tin­u­a­tion of the epic sto­ry which was The Witch­er. 
The wait is final­ly over and The Witch­er 2 has arrived and the ques­tion on every­ones mind is “is it worth the wait”.  The answer to that is most def­i­nite­ly yes.  The Witch­er 2 picks up imme­di­ate­ly where the first left off and we take up our role as Ger­alt of Riv­ia as he trav­els the lands attempt­ing to clear his name after he is wrong­ly accused for the assas­si­na­tion of King Foltest. 
Before we begin let’s get the bad, and yes there is some, out of the way.  The biggest issue this game suf­fers from is the abil­i­ty to break quests.   You can do things in such a way that you will actu­al­ly break key part of the quest to where you will have to reload the game and start over.  Remem­ber the gamers mon­tra “save often and love it”.  This can be incred­i­bly aggra­vat­ing when you have spent 45 min­utes doing things around the world only to find out that you have to repeat them.  I actu­al­ly found myself hav­ing to do this.   The dif­fi­cul­ty in the game seems to be… off.  Even on nor­mal I found myself get­ting trashed ear­ly on in the game to the point where I had to switch the dif­fi­cul­ty to easy just to pass a cer­tain stage.  We also have the prob­lem that ATI/AMD own­ers have run into where there are numer­ous graph­ics prob­lems abound.  Most of these issues, assum­ing the com­pa­ny fol­lows its trend, should be fixed short­ly in an upcom­ing patch this week. 
Sor­ry Cry­sis 2, step aside, you are not the graph­ics king on the PC.  With the pos­si­ble excep­tion of Metro 2033, The Witch­er 2 is prob­a­bly the best look­ing game on the PC or any oth­er plat­form for that mat­ter.  Some of the long dis­tance visu­als you encounter dur­ing your trav­els will leave you breath­less.  The sun fil­ter­ing through the for­est tree tops will make you stop and admire the visu­als.  The burn­ing fires you will see while you move through the game looks freak­ish­ly like the real thing.  The Witch­er 2 steps up the graph­ics across the board.  PC enthu­si­asts will be in for a treat as The Witch­er 2 offers a wide range of graph­i­cal set­tings that you can tweak and set to your heart’s con­tent. 
The sto­ry as with the orig­i­nal is top notch and the deci­sions you make are just as impor­tant as they were in the first game if not more so.  The sto­ry is so cap­ti­vat­ing that you will find that you have been play­ing for 5 hours and not even real­ize it.  The game has mul­ti­ple begin­nings, ways to progress and over 16 dif­fer­ent end­ings depend­ing on how you play the game.  The Witch­er 2 does not have good or bad choic­es like your stan­dard RPG and it can make some of the deci­sions that you make incred­i­bly dif­fi­cult and in some cas­es you may regret them *remem­ber the gamers mon­tra*.  The deci­sions you make not only affect the imme­di­ate sit­u­a­tion but changes the way the entire game plays out.  RPG fans will not be dis­ap­point­ed with this. 
You are able to import your pre­vi­ous save game, how­ev­er if you are like me you prob­a­bly don’t have it any­more since you’ve prob­a­bly upgrad­ed or changed com­put­ers since them. 
The biggest stand­out in this game for me was the voice act­ing.  It’s top notch all the way through the game.  From the pass­er by com­ments you hear while walk­ing down the street to the scream on the bat­tle­field the voice act­ing is superb and that com­bined with the supe­ri­or graph­ics and top notch sto­ry The Witch­er 2 offers a real­ly cap­ti­vat­ing and immer­sive world for you to get lost in and trust me you will get lost in it. 
The Witch­er 2 improves upon every­thing that made The Witch­er 2 and in my opin­ion is a bet­ter game than the orig­i­nal in many ways.  Any­one who is on the edge about buy­ing The Witch­er or The Witch­er 2 I would urge you to do your­self a favor and pick them both up as you will not be dis­ap­point­ed.  The Witch­er 2 is a fan­tas­tic game that should not be missed and it is one of the best games on the PC plat­form.  I should also note that this is a PC exclu­sive release and that is rare these days.  If you are look­ing for an excuse to build a new com­put­er then The Witch­er 2 is that excuse.  So tell your girl­friend good­bye, drop out of your class­es and say good­bye to your social life as The Witch­er 2 whisks you away to anoth­er world.
I should note that this is NOT a kid friend­ly game.  If you are a par­ent and con­sid­er­ing to get this for your child I would urge you to not  as this game is bru­tal and vio­lent and has sev­er­al sex­u­al­ly explic­it scenes through­out the game. 
[Gal­leries 1 not found]


  1. zero_19 - May 24, 2011 12:23 pm

    I think you just con­vinced me to get both The Witch­er and The Witch­er 2.…good job, mak­ing me spend mon­ey.….

  2. DrPixel - May 24, 2011 2:14 pm

    @zero_19 Same here!
    Well, great review of the game, I liked how you touched on a lot of dif­fer­ent points of the game, includ­ing the bad points too.

  3. Algorind - May 24, 2011 2:45 pm

    What else is there to say about a game, much less a sequel, like this? When it comes to gen­res I love, RPG reigns supreme, and The Witch­er 2 is defi­nate­ly the king right now. Hav­ing played the first one and hav­ing my own fair share of gripes and hic­cups, to see such a well pol­ished, well writ­ten, and well exe­cut­ed game real­ly renews my faith in the gam­ing indus­try as a whole.
    This is not a game to miss. If you even remote­ly like RPGs and don’t mind look­ing at beau­ti­ful­ly detailed graph­ics, this one is a no-brain­er. And the best part is, it’s actu­al­ly /challenging/. There’s no gulp­ing down health potions like water here..if you go into bat­tle unpre­pared or think you can just swing a sword a lot to kill every­thing in sight, you will die.
    I can’t say this enough. Buy this game.


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