Witcher 3 combat to lean towards “the tactics side”

Wednesday, 6th March 2013 23:41 GMT By Brenna Hillier

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt boasts an overhauled combat system which CD Projekt RED believes will better demonstrate Geralt of Rivia’s near supernatural ability to take on groups of foes.

Speaking to Rock, Paper, Shotgun, marketing executive Michał Platkow-Gilewski copped to problems with the previous games’ combat, which didn’t elegantly communicate what is apparent in the books the series is based on.

“What we wanted to do with Witcher combat is that we wanted to show how Geralt uses the sword. He’s the master of the sword. Geralt’s true mastery comes out in the crowd fights, where can take on five or six enemies on his own,” he said.

“What happened in Witcher 2 is that people were telling us that the combat was just a little bit too arcade. The rules were a bit too arcade, to be honest. What we decided is to go a bit more over to the tactics side, to give you the feeling of having absolute control over the battlefield. That’s what we aimed for.”

Platkow-Gilewski said one of the ways CD Projekt RED has addressed its ambition is be improving the camera.

“We’ll always show the fights from the right angle or perspective or distance so that you’ll be aware of all the enemies around you. If they communicate among themselves and decide that it’ll be a good idea to surround you, you’ll see everyone who’s going around behind you,” he said.

“There won’t be any situation where someone attacks you and you won’t know what’s happening. The enemies will move around you and you will move as well, but it’s not wild and frantic. It’s a slow walk, like a slow dance. With swords. For all the enemies, we’re using real fighting techniques, many valid techniques. We have a few experts on our team, and we’ll be using stuntmen with huge experience for that as well. But Geralt’s fighting technique, it’s like sword dancing. He’ll have cool movements that you wouldn’t see in a real fight.”

A colleague pointed out that geralt will never do anything “over the top”, like somersaulting.

“But he’s different. He’s faster and stronger than anyone else, so his fighting technique is different,” Platkow-Gilewski concluded.

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is expected in 2014 on PC, PlayStation 4 and some other next-gen console we still have to pretend doesn’t exist.



  1. noamlol2

    too arcade?
    are you fucking mad??!

    on normal or even harder tatics was a MUST if you want to survive

    i bet this guy finished the game on easy

    #1 2 years ago
  2. Erthazus

    It was simple and arcadish.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. SlayerGT

    Can someone here on VG who has played Witcher 2 on 360 help me with something please? I just started it a few nights ago but haven’t gotten far. Firstly, do I need to know the story of 1?

    #3 2 years ago
  4. freedoms_stain

    @3, I don’t think so.

    I mean, you won’t feel the same connection to Triss/Zoltan/Dandelion that someone who has played Witcher 1 will, but aside from that, most of what happened in TW1 isn’t critical to “get” TW2. If you strip it down to the basics, Geralt does Foltest a solid in the first game, then right at the end he saves him from assassination – apparently by a Witcher, and that sets you up for TW2 where Foltest treats Geralt like his pet Witcher.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. SlayerGT

    @4 Ah Freedoms, so I played the “tutorial”, which I think is exclusive to the 360?? And sucks :) If I knew better I’d say what I completed so far (escaping the prison) is the tutorial of sorts. I saved it and quit after it shows “chapter 1″. Is THIS where the game really starts? Cause so far I have super mixed feelings. I mean the story telling has got me scratching my head. I’ve seen in-game/engine cut scenes, comic book art, and 3D cut scenes..

    #5 2 years ago
  6. freedoms_stain

    @5, sounds like the Prologue to me, which, btw, is the worst part of the game imo. The stealth crap is so badly done. It’s only in that part of the game, I don’t know why they bothered.

    The actual tutorial (in the PC version anyway) takes place in the Arena if I remember correctly, and doesn’t have any story aspects.

    Once you hit the 1st town, Flotsam, that’s where the game properly starts. You’ll take on “Witchers Work” (side quests) and so on. You’ll start having to make decisions too, which is probably the most interesting thing in the game. There are no inherently good or bad actions in The Witcher, but everything has a consequence and will impact the direction your quest takes and what possibilities arise later.

    When it comes to the cutscenes, I can’t remember if its been properly emphasised in TW2, but Geralt has lost his memory. He was killed off by the author of the books (whose Polish name I am neither going to attempt nor google), in TW1 he is resurrected by Triss Merigold, but his memory is in pieces. When you get an animated cutscene in the game, it’s usually about Geralt’s memory as it slowly returns to him over the course of the game. So these are pretty weird, because half remembered things are coming together confusedly in his head.

    From the first game we know “The Wild Hunt” has significance (Geralt encounters “The King of The Wild Hunt” in TW1, but he doesn’t reveal anything of significance other than to suggest that Geralt has a “destiny” beyond his actions in TW1), but it is unknown what that significance is until the end of Witcher 2. So whenever The Wild Hunt comes up, pay attention, because it’s important to the plot.

    I think you should play through Flotsam at least.

    #6 2 years ago
  7. SlayerGT

    I plan on playing though it entirely. Thanks for these clarifications Freedoms. Its kind of what I figured but just wasn’t sure. Im looking forward to getting into it especially since 3 looks to be a bit of bad ass :) I like the details so far. They do a good job of making tiny things feel important. I appreciate that.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. Fortesque

    This is definitely something they need to get right in the next game. I never finished The Witcher 2 because of how much I loathed the combat system. The lack of control you had over Geralt’s actions was especially apparent on higher difficulties. Take som cues from FromSoft maybe? The right cues this time. Like introducing HITBOXES.

    #8 2 years ago
  9. infernalism


    “When it comes to the cutscenes, I can’t remember if its been properly emphasised in TW2, but Geralt has lost his memory. He was killed off by the author of the books (whose Polish name I am neither going to attempt nor google), in TW1 he is resurrected by Triss Merigold, but his memory is in pieces. When you get an animated cutscene in the game, it’s usually about Geralt’s memory as it slowly returns to him over the course of the game. So these are pretty weird, because half remembered things are coming together confusedly in his head.”

    The author’s name is Andrzej (or Andrew if you like) Sapkowski. You seem to be pretty interested with the story presented in the Witcher series, so I think you know it’s a direct continuation of a “cult status” fantasy series in Poland, and should know, who the author of that series is.


    Sapkowski did not really kill Geralt. What happened in the books was, that he and Yennefer were transported to another world (in a very poor physical state) by his (and hers) “adopted daughter” Cirilla (or Ciri in short), the Princess of Cintra, now nonexistant nation, conquered by Nilfgaard and it’s Emperor Emhyr var Emreis right before the Witcher series begins, and the short stories end (most of the short stories happen much earlier than the series, all of them happen chronologically before the Blood of Elves, first book of the Witcher series proper).

    Emhyr is revealed to be the father of Ciri by the end of the books, and a man, whom Geralt saved from a curse in probably the most important short story written by Sapkowski in relation to the rest of the series. So, Ciri, a rare magical Source, and inheritor of Hen Ichaer, the Old Blood, is being pursued through the books by one of the most powerful mages in the world – Vilgefortz, and his people. He wants to use Cirilla for his purposes. Geralt survives both the encounter with him (though he gets his ass kicked twice before he and Yennefer in tandem are actually able to beat him) and with Emhyr, but after all the carnage and strife is over with in the books, and the gang goes back to Northern Kingdoms, the witcher is stabbed with a pitchfork in the city of Rivia, while trying to help the non-humans in what came to be known as the Rivian pogrom. He just happened to witness what was happening, people attacking the non-humans, blaming them for the Scoia’tael, who aided Nilfgaard in the war. He thought it was wrong, acted upon his feelings like many times in the past and got himself involved. His friends come too late to help him, as he was presumably dying. What happens after can be interpreted in a myriad of ways, because the author uses Geralt’s perspective to describe what is next. Geralt is in a boat, with Yennefer (also in a bad, life threatining condition, because she tried to help him) and Ciri in what appears to be another world. Ciri is capable of those kind of jumps to different worlds (one of the reasons Vilgefortz wanted to kidnap her and experiment on her) that seemingly no mage is capable of, she just couldn’t control or understand them in the books, but at the end of the series she learned at least a measure of control.
    Ciri goes away, leaving Geralt and Yennefer in the boat, and is off to explore different worlds, she lands first in presumably, our world, meeting one of the future Knights of the Round Table.
    You can interpret it, that she left them to die in that boat, but she left them together, to die in peace, happy, in their own arms, or you can interpret it another way…


    Here is what the game storytellers did. Geralt and Yennefer do not die, and they live together in that tranquil world Ciri left them in, till the Wild Hunt comes for them. They take Yennefer, and Geralt escapes to his world. He is determined to track the Wild Hunt and save Yennefer, and he crosses the border to Nilfgaard, to go after it. There he meets Letho, Serrit, and Auckes, and saves the former from certain death at the “hands” of a Slyzard. They join him in his search for the Wild Hunt, and the group succeeds, finding it, and retrieving Yennefer, but Geralt is taken away by the King of the Wild Hunt in exchange for her. Letho, Serrit and Auckes take care of her, till they are captured by nilfgaardian Special Forces, and receive the mission everyone who finished Assassins of Kings is familiar with. Yennefer stays behind.


    Geralt on the other hand misteriously appears near Kaer Morhen, the ruined Witcher Stronghold, in bad shape and suffering from amnesia. He is found and taken in by his friends. Triss Merigold is summoned by the Witchers to Kaer Morhen, to help them understand what happened to Geralt, and help with his healing. This is how The Witcher 1 begins.

    So, in short – No ressurection by Triss Merigold. :D
    Hope that helped.

    #9 2 years ago

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