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Pasanda

TW3 - Blood and Wine

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I completed the Witcher: Wild Hunt main game 3 years ago, with about 185 hours played. The whole experience put it up there among the top games i've experienced in my puff. Towards the end, i enjoyed it so much, i bought the Hearts of Stone expansion, which i started playing, got stuck on a hard bit (spectre in the painting), and ran out of the oomph required to see it through and stopped 3 years ago.

About 6 weeks ago i was between games and wanted to see how the game stood up to the GTX 1080 and 3440x1440. Knowing i'd be hit with the frustrating part i got stuck on, i sought advice from the great and wise Internet, which told me the obvious solution i'd missed. I played through the rest of the expansion and concluded that i wanted more. It's about 10-15 hours play for me, but i play slow. I had heard there was another expansion, and acquired Blood and Wine.

First thing to say is that the 2 cannot be compared; HoS was a new quest line, with around 20 new quests in it, BaW is a new (and large) zone. Hundreds of new (and old) characters, hundreds of new quests, a new type of add-on skills tree, and a new main story arc. I would estimate i put around 60-80 hours into this expansion - more than many AAA titles last. The story is fantastic; making me really feel for the characters, which i actually very rare for me. It also has multiple endings that are vastly different too, I'm actually playing through a second ending right now. The first had me confronting a super-vampire of the old world. This one has me dealing with magical characters from fairytales, in a fantasy landscape (currently searching for Jack's 5 beans).

With this expansion, i would say that this now tops my all time games chart. 

 

Also, let me just  leave this here:

https://youtu.be/UAQhYz-Db70

 

 

 

Edited by Pasanda

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Some time back, I picked up The Witcher Game of the Year on a deep discount sale; this versions is supposed to include all of the expansions and extras.  I just can't get excited enough about starting to play it.  I thought both of TW3's predecessors were /meh.  I hear a lot of rave reviews for TW3, but I also heard fanboi nerdgasms about the first two ... so not really sure what to believe.  I'll probably install and tinker with it some day when I'm also between games and have nothing better to do ... or in a moment of weakness as I review my current backlog of un-played game titles in my library.

Finishing a game is a rare event for me, too.  So I can appreciate the joy at discovering you've made it to the end without abandoning it in favor of some other shiny jewel that beckons.

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OK. So you can anticipate how i'd respond, given my opening post. Let me just say that i thought 1 & 2 were also little more than OK. Both my own and general opinion is that 1&2 cannot be compared to 3. They are completely different, both game styles and approaches. Only thing they share is the main character, lore, and boobies. 

None of which guarantees you'd like it, of course. Although i would suggest that if you haven't gelled by the time you'd hit Novigrad, you're probably never going to. That can be as little as around 4-5 hours game-play in. but usually takes 10-20 hours.

 

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I lasted well through the first couple of "areas" in the first Witcher, and wondered what all the fuss was about.  Later, I didn't get much further than past the intro "area" in the second Witcher because I just couldn't muster the enthusiasm common with others.  In furtherance of my downward progression, I've only purchased the third Witcher, and have not installed it.  Even more true to my inclinations, I've avoided - and even been reviled at the thought of - looking at any of the following derivative Witcher games.

I recognize I'm either the exception or the solitary speaker for a silent community of Witcher non-fans - those who are just as confused at the games' popularity.

Edited by Elovia

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I could deal with the clunky combat mechanics; they're prevalent in many other games.  What I had difficulty getting past was that you were locked into one character and made to play it in a specific way as led by the game direction.  I never got the sense that the character was mine to RP the way I wanted ... or play the way I found most fun.

Me: "But I don't want to have virtual sex with that whore.  I just want to kill monsters and gain skills to improve how I kill monsters."

Developers: "no, you're going to have sex with that whore, because that's what everyone else expects the character to do.  We took the time to script it, so you're going to do it."

Edited by Elovia

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5 hours ago, Elovia said:

I could deal with the clunky combat mechanics; they're prevalent in many other games.  What I had difficulty getting past was that you were locked into one character and made to play it in a specific way as led by the game direction.  I never got the sense that the character was mine to RP the way I wanted ... or play the way I found most fun.

Me: "But I don't want to have virtual sex with that whore.  I just want to kill monsters and gain skills to improve how I kill monsters."

Developers: "no, you're going to have sex with that whore, because that's what everyone else expects the character to do.  We took the time to script it, so you're going to do it."

Yeah. You won't like 3 either. One unusual thing about Witcher is the the char you play is also voiced. Which means the "character" is not very flexible. The skills you have are, but no so much how you behave and interelate to other people.  So the "role" in RPG, is more about the skills and abilities, than demeanor or communication skills.

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So after the first conclusion, i suspected there was another outcome to see. So i reloaded a game that was about 2 hours back from the first, before i'd made a key decision. Wow! I've never seen such a dramatically different outcome to two different parts of the same game. Like 2 hours different gameplay made for your choices.

 

I've finished both and i'm very happy with Geralts life now.

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20 hours ago, Pasanda said:

So after the first conclusion, i suspected there was another outcome to see. So i reloaded a game that was about 2 hours back from the first, before i'd made a key decision. Wow! I've never seen such a dramatically different outcome to two different parts of the same game. Like 2 hours different gameplay made for your choices.

I've finished both and i'm very happy with Geralts life now.

This reminds me ... head over to GoG (presuming you have an account there), and you can get a "movie" 2h live concert of Witcher 3 Wild Hunt music for free.  This weekend (?) only.

[edit:   .... and it's gone.]

 

Edited by Elovia
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22 hours ago, Elovia said:

This reminds me ... head over to GoG (presuming you have an account there), and you can get a "movie" 2h live concert of Witcher 3 Wild Hunt music for free.  This weekend (?) only.

[edit:   .... and it's gone.]

 

I got the notification from GOG and signed up straight away.

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I thought you might be more impressed with Blood and Wine than with Hearts of Stone, thought about mentioning it to you including the bits about the whole new area, the difference in style, the vineyard you acquire (so depressed you can't run a wine business in the game), etc but felt that it would come across as shilling the game lol. Boobs and Wenches is definitely the better of the two expansions, Hoes of Submission definitely could not compare to it. I like how everything seems nicer and less shitty on the surface, and that the place you are visiting isn't being torn apart by war like the other places, but still has darkness bubbling underneath. Bit more comedy and riding through fields of flowers that I know you like. :P 

And I can't believe I missed the concert music thing. :(

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Yeah, they definitely worked hard on giving him a happy ending. Several different outcomes, with different old flames coming forward to spend the rest of their days with you. The warmth of the Regis friendship. Humour coming from Geralt!. Loads of humour being built into the game itself (The Major Domo being Barnabas "Basil Foulty" tickled me). Two completely different story endings. My mate ended up with Triss and i ended up with Yen. But he did kill Yen in the main game, so that might have been wierd. Several warm & fuzzy quests - taking on the Spoon Wraith/Old Lady as home cook. The character obsessed by precious spoons being called Smeagol Serkis. Scraping Thumbelina off the sole of your shoe, after taking a misstep in fairy-tale land. The list is very long indeed. 

 

Just great writing.

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40 minutes ago, Pasanda said:

Yeah, they definitely worked hard on giving him a happy ending. Several different outcomes, with different old flames coming forward to spend the rest of their days with you. The warmth of the Regis friendship. Humour coming from Geralt!. Loads of humour being built into the game itself (The Major Domo being Barnabas "Basil Foulty" tickled me). Two completely different story endings. My mate ended up with Triss and i ended up with Yen. But he did kill Yen in the main game, so that might have been wierd. Several warm & fuzzy quests - taking on the Spoon Wraith/Old Lady as home cook. The character obsessed by precious spoons being called Smeagol Serkis. Scraping Thumbelina off the sole of your shoe, after taking a misstep in fairy-tale land. The list is very long indeed. 

 

Just great writing.

I must have missed the Smeagol Serkis bit, there's lots of stuff that's easily missed apparently in Bimbos and Winos, as I have also heard of a quest where you get drugged up and have a talking Roach the horse! Going through a new playthrough now (though still in base game) actually, due to only having finished the expansion with an unimported game due to losing all saves at one point but have now managed to recover an old save to play with. You ended up with Yen? I thought you went with Triss, and I didn't know you could kill Yen! Why would you do that lol. You can even end up with Dandelion if neither of the ladies like you and Ciri didn't come back. 

Loved Barnabus and the Old Lady becoming your cook was cool (did you get the reference to Gaunter O'Dimm in that quest?). They rubbed up close to the fourth wall a bit in it, and right at the end when Geralt smiles at the camera. I also felt like they were testing out new gameplay mechanics with the mutations and building up the vineyard, for possible future games. 

Did you see the tenth anniversary video they released? Cheesy as hell but certain things they said in it seemed to imply future Witcherness to come I think.

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