19 May 2011

Witcher 2

Beside my paper for school Witcher 2 is the thing that occupies me at the moment. Roughly 15 hours into the game I can safely say this is one of the best games I've played.

Love the story, love the mature theme, the cursing, the jokes, the dark humor, the characters.

The story is just getting better and better as it unfolds. It is very refreshing to have a gritty adult RPG like this. There have been moments where I laughed out loud as the comic relief is just genius in pure Witcher fashion.

One side quest started out with Geralt armwrestling some special forces, one thing led to the other - making him wake up huddled on a beach dressed only in his underwear and ending up threatening a smug fisherman to know what the hell had happened to his stuff. Tracing the blanked out escapades makes our hero realize that he has gotten a drunk tattoo and he and his buddies had crawled into a whorehouse and paid good coin to ride the whores like horses across the river - supposedly trying for hours before giving up HAHAHA!

Another comic relief sidequest related to a troll and a broken bridge, Geralt was asked to sort out the Trolls drunkenness - since the bridge had collapsed and the Troll was constantly shitfaced and trying to make people pay him with booze (calling Geralt a dwarf as he approached). There was a dark and sad backside to this quest though - which once again shows the brilliance in having "monster" sometimes be more human than humans.

There are active choices all the time, some may only affect a cutscene, during one quest Geralt asked his sorceress love interest to tag along (the other choice was to fetch her something by yourself). Once you arrive at the location, both become trapped in an old bathhouse beneath ground. Geralt of course, being  a womanizer does not waste too much time standing around. So while the two protagonists make love underground, some thugs move about just above their location - one thug tells the story of an elven legend containing 2 lovers and that people who are deeply in love can hear those lovers if they listen closely. Of course the sound of lovemaking below reaches one of the thugs through a crack - making him thing he is in love. I laughed hard as the scene was so well crafted.

These are the things that make you smile, but there are also a lot of decision that you have to make during the main quest and side quests that leave  a sour taste in your mouth as you know one could be bad and the other worse. This also makes every decision you take a lot more meaningful. Above all the choices you make and the interaction with other characters feels very realistic.

The battles are frenzied, lots of ducking away, parrying blows, using magic to counterattack , jump to the side to slash twice then jump back to avoid getting smacked in the head. The combat has changed from Witcher 2 in that you  no longer need to time your blows with the mouse buttons. The fighting styles are also gone - or rather "strong" and "fast" attacks are more freed up and you hit with each style depending on the mouse button you press.

If I have to complain about one thing it's that if you run  a Windows Visa 32-bit OS and only have 4gb ram the game will be prone to crashes to desktop (without any error message showing) after you complete the prologue act. The solution is either to use something called a "3gb switch" or wait for a patch. I'll wait for the patch as the switch can be harmfull to the computer. Instead I just quicksave often. It's really the only problem so far - 15-16 hours into the game. I have not found any bugs or game breaking stuff.

Just started act II and taking a glimpse in the Game Guide I saw that the entire 2nd act can be different depending on the choice you make at the end of act I. The replay value of this game will be great.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting enough, act II has so far not had a single CTD. Maybe the RAM related problem is confined to act I.


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