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October 24th, 2011, 04:45
I actually liked the political focus of the second game; the political nature of the story is a refreshing break from usual fantasy tropes, and I enjoy moral quandaries that aren't black and white (also a staple of TW1). I liked TW2's story for reasons that are similar to why I enjoy Game of Thrones: Political intrigue creates a much more believable setting for me than typical "save the day" heroic fantasies or "grand adventures," and I am very glad that a game focused on these elements instead of the usual cliches that are so commonplace throughout RPGs. Dragon Age: Origins, while guilty of being about "saving the world" on the surface, also did a great job of incorporating political dynamics into the story to make it feel much deeper than the darkspawn invasion would have otherwise been (I guess being a "history geek" is partly responsible for my love of "realistic" fantasy settings that feature political struggles; the feudal era of Europe had fascinating plots, power struggles, and traditions that seem terribly under-represented in the fantasy realm based off this time period, and The Witcher franchise helps fill this void).

The Witcher 1 was a great experience for me, but certain parts of the story just seemed to drag on and feel a bit stale, which caused me to lose my connection with the story a bit in the process - but perhaps that is due to the fact that I couldn't stand the Alvin storyline (mainly the character) and absolutely hated dealing with almost any quest related to him. I think the first game's story would have benefited from more political intrigue instead of the path that was ultimately taken, which felt far more like standard fantasy, albeit pulled off extremely well with great choice and consequence implementation and very interesting characters/world lore.
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