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Default The Witcher - Combat & Story Impressions @ GameSpot

July 3rd, 2007, 13:51
GameSpot has a new hands-on preview of The Witcher, including discussion of some of the choices. Spoilers might apply here:
The consequences of your choice won't become clear until much later, as much as 10 or 12 hours in gameplay time. If you decide to let the elves and dwarves have the weapons, you'll eventually discover that they are using them against innocent civilians in their insurgency. Even worse, they kill an important non-player character, and his death removes a plotline and quests from the game. However, if you decide to kill the elves and dwarves, you'll eventually discover that their deaths sparked an investigation by the authorities. It turns out that you inadvertently are the cause of the insurgency's downfall, as the authorities identify the remaining rebel members and ringleaders, including another important NPC. His removal from the game denies you his plotline and quests. Note that there's no "good" option here; in either case, someone important to you is going to die. And the outcomes aren't something that you could have predicted, either. Over the course of the game, the consequences of your choices begin to cascade, and the state of the world can change wildly depending on your decisions.
More information.
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July 3rd, 2007, 13:51
Nice. This one just keeps looking better and better…
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July 3rd, 2007, 14:14
The only bad thing about this game is the combat. It is such a shame, really D8
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July 3rd, 2007, 16:45
Originally Posted by Morbus View Post
The only bad thing about this game is the combat. It is such a shame, really D8
I think the combat is great. Reminds me of the older Gothic series where timing is key to link combat moves.
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July 3rd, 2007, 18:26
i second that dr A
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July 3rd, 2007, 20:21
This one just may crack that rarified air of "purchase on day of release" for me. Combat looks beautiful, albeit the mechanics may be a love/hate thing. More importantly, this may be the first RPG in a long, long while that engages my brain on the story, choices and character front. No offense to anyone, but I find most RPG in-game stories to be very limited as they're pretty light/simplistic/formulaic fare, literary-wise. Could this be the start of a true adult RPG niche?
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July 3rd, 2007, 20:32
I just read the preview, and it sounds like a great game

However, in the questline being outlined in the gamespot preview, there seems to be no optoion to choose to only give the weapons to either the dwarfes or the elves, nor does there seem to be an option to talk either group out of needing the weapons, then turning the tables on them. It only seems to me that that there (still) are two options, a bad option or a worse option.

As for combat, I still believe that the Witchers combat rely too much on the player's skill, and not enough on the character's skills, it still seems that it the players skills with with the mouse that decided whether or not, you will hit or not.

So, I'm slightly more interested in this game than I was before, but this is most likely one of the games, I won't be playing….
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July 3rd, 2007, 21:56
Originally Posted by aries100 View Post
I just read the preview, and it sounds like a great game

However, in the questline being outlined in the gamespot preview, there seems to be no optoion to choose to only give the weapons to either the dwarfes or the elves, nor does there seem to be an option to talk either group out of needing the weapons, then turning the tables on them. It only seems to me that that there (still) are two options, a bad option or a worse option.
I think the dwarves and elves are allied as one group--could be wrong, though.

As they are insurrectionists looking for weapons, "talking them out" of their need for the weapons would mean converting them to a whole other way of life, which doesn't seem intrinsically realistic, either--I mean, it's not a hostage situation--they are there to obtain arms. It would be a diplomacy skill so high it isn't found as a parallel in RL, for sure. What is rather realistic is that there actually is "only a bad option or a worse option."

As for combat, I still believe that the Witchers combat rely too much on the player's skill, and not enough on the character's skills, it still seems that it the players skills with with the mouse that decided whether or not, you will hit or not.
I don't know there, either, aries. Of course, this may not suit your personal play style or be fun for you, but I think it sounds like a combat system where you have enough control to feel in charge, but not so many choices as to be fumbling around.

As the preview states:

Regardless of the style that you choose, it's important that you maintain a rhythm in a swordfight. If you rapidly tap the mouse button, like you do in many RPGs, you'll interrupt Geralt's natural movements. Through practice, you'll discover the optimal moments when to hit the mouse button to initiate an attack. The system requires some skill, but that was the goal, as the designers felt that combat in many RPGs was either too automated or too mindless.
That is definitely the case for me--but I don't feel that the division you mention between my skills as a player and my character's skills is a negative thing. I usually can't tell the difference anyway.

I guess we'll have to wait for a demo, or for the release, to see how it really plays, but I still am looking forward to this one.
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July 3rd, 2007, 22:08
@aries100: I think they've been pretty clear on what their goal is in regards to choices and consequences. It's not having lots of options and ways to solve quests, but rather two main thing's they're after: 1) morally ambiguous choices rather than straight-up Good or Evil. 2) delayed consequences rather than immediate and final feedback. So, I'm guessing if you're looking for lots of ways to solve a given quest, Witcher probably won't deliver there.

As for the combat, I think they're trying to strike a balance between player's skill and your character's skill. I like that, personally. However, if you're looking for almost purely stat based, hands-off combat, again, Witcher probably isn't for you.
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July 4th, 2007, 02:21
Any mouseclick combat game, whether timing is required or not, can't have the same way of working as the old Gothic system where you litteraly control every swing through directions. Moving and fighting is all done with the mouse in The Witcher, Gothic is 100% keyboard.

I have yet to see click-style combat that required "lots of skill" to master (RPGs that is), so I doubt it will be all that heavy. I suspect you can accomplish neat combos through perfect execution, but without any real need to do so - just tapping the buttons will probably get the job done.
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