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Pedro 05-17-2011 12:19 PM

The Witcher 2
 
Anybody getting this? I am downloading right now (14 gigs, what the hell?) and word is that there are some issues as a result of a day 0 patch. Hopefully we don't have to wait 6 months to be able to enjoy this game (like the last one).

EDIT: am also hoping my PC will be able to cope with it. Fingers crossed.

UltimoCroft 05-17-2011 02:09 PM

Re: The Witcher 2
 
Yep, got it this morning and played a few hours. It's early days, but initial impressions are extremely positive. The game is so far in advance of the original that I've come to the conclusion that the developer's abilities were massively hampered by a restrictive game engine, where as in the sequel they've got one of the best gaming engines I've seen in recent years. The game actually looks on-par with Uncharted 2, and that's saying something.

The combat is sorta similar to Demon's Souls at this stage for me, which is another great feat. I'm on hard mode, and it's a case of making blows really count, not exposing yourself constantly, and adapting to different opponents. I'm loving it. And that's without even using new talents or abilities yet.

The overall production values, sound and design of the game seem fantastic. I really got absorbed into the game during the opening section, especially the castle siege (don't worry that's not a spoiler; it's essentially the tutorial).

If it maintains this quality for the duration then it's a definite contender for GotY in my opinion, alongside another superb PC title in Shogun 2. It's a shame not many of the staff at GC.com actually play PC games like these, since they really do deserve as much recognition as possible. How can anyone play crap like Fable III when this game blows it out of the water in less than 1 minute of gameplay (and that really isn't an exaggeration)? Ironically Fable III gets a release on PC too this week... lolz

Surprisingly the game has ran smooth as butter on my rig too (*touch wood*), though I let the game pre-determine the graphics rather than set them myself, since I don't want to risk framerate issues until a patch sorts optimisation issues out (which there are likely to be). I expect some crashes eventually, but to not have encountered any hiccups during installation and starting the game is a very good sign considering the original game (where such acts were rare indeed).

Anyway, in summary, this game owns. ;p

Li-Ion 05-17-2011 02:42 PM

Re: The Witcher 2
 
I'll get it as soon as I get my new graphics card, which is planned for August from whatever is leftover of my holiday money. I doubt that my current card could handle the game properly.

However: if the combat is similar to Demon's Souls I could see myself preponing my hardware upgrade and subsequently getting Witcher 2 earlier :D
However, I'd like to finish the first game before starting the second.

UltimoCroft 05-17-2011 03:27 PM

Re: The Witcher 2
 
I'm cautious when I say similar to Demon's Souls, but that's honestly the vibe I get at the moment. If it's on normal then it'll likely feel like a typical RPG hack 'n' slash, but on hard having to roll, block and parry is very similar to DS, and so is the punishment should you fail.

The developers cited DS as an inspiration in one of their developer interview things on Gamespot or Gametrailers I think, so I guess it's not too surprising to see some similarities.

crackajack 05-17-2011 03:53 PM

Re: The Witcher 2
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Li-Ion (Post 196525)
However, I'd like to finish the first game before starting the second.

I have installed it early 2008, updated it just the previous week. Going to play it ... er ... maybe 2013!

But hearing it will get free DLCs is tempting me to buy it even before i play the first one.

Richard Naik 05-18-2011 01:41 PM

Re: The Witcher 2
 
I have it, review forthcoming whenever I finish it or get fed up enough to stop playing.

Witcher 1 had a lot of great ideas, but it was way too rough around the edges. I'm hoping they're able to fix all the stupid crap from the first game.

Pedro 05-18-2011 03:16 PM

Re: The Witcher 2
 
Looking forward to the review. I got a couple of hours with it last night but spent most of that tinkering with settings to get it to play smoothly on my pc:

http://i53.tinypic.com/hu4rif.gif :(

I have it ok now, but the screen seems to pitch and yaw like mad when I move the mouse to look around. The joys of PC gaming.

Brief impressions about the combat are pretty good. Ultimocroft above convinced me to try it on Hard, so cheers!

Li-Ion 05-18-2011 05:48 PM

Re: The Witcher 2
 
Rock, Paper Shotgun seems to like it:
Quote:

This is one of the most significant games of 2011. Right now it looks like most significant PC-only game of 2011.

The Witcher 2: Assassins Of Kings is the sequel to 2007′s wonky fantasy RPG, The Witcher, and it improves on that precarious foundation in almost every conceivable way. I suppose the ambition of the developers for their work should have been clear after they relaunched their original game with the voice acting and character animation redone in 2008, to give us an Enhanced Edition, but even that was a pale creature when compared to the muscular effort of their most recent work. The Witcher 2 is a collossal beast in terms of vision and complexity, and it has engrossed me for the past few days. Itís shorter than the original by some measure, but it is burning half as long to be twice as bright.
:eek:

Everything is better with a Blade Runner reference :D

UltimoCroft 05-19-2011 07:02 AM

Re: The Witcher 2
 
I'm surprised to see some reviews for it already, especially those posted a mere day after release, since the game is likely 40+ hours long. I don't think any media got early copies, so although I'm happy to see it getting good scores I do think some people are rushing through the game or maybe not even finishing it before posting a review.

In a way it works against the game if reviews roll in at various times, since later ones are more inclined to score it lower to spite those who posted theirs early, and since the game isn't backed by a big publisher there's no reason to overrate the game like they do with most big titles backed by big publishers (which we all know they do often).

User score seems positive for now, at any rate.

Pedro 05-19-2011 05:53 PM

Re: The Witcher 2
 
It's working a bit better for me now, but I had to reduce difficulty to Normal as I still lag if I'm fighting more than two enemies at a time and it isn't feasible (that's my excuse anyway :p). However I will say that Normal doesn't seem to be too difficult at all (I may be wrong, have only got as far as part 2 of the prologue) and I'm dispatching those same three enemies with ease now.

Just had a quick look on Metacritic - those critic scores do seem very high for this type of game. An RPG from a second-tier developer getting 95? Interesting how well it is being received. (I love those user reviews that give it 0 as well. Fantastic reading).

EDIT: I mean, what was this guy expecting?

Quote:

Oh and it's one of those emo fantasy BS worlds where everything is so medieval...it's no longer funny
:D

Li-Ion 05-19-2011 06:19 PM

Re: The Witcher 2
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Pedro (Post 196625)
(I love those user reviews that give it 0 as well. Fantastic reading).

This tells you everything you need to know about user reviews on metacritic:
http://www.metacritic.com/user/addyftw

This person complains about the Witcher being a bad console port. That made me laugh so hard I almost fell from my chair. Don't those people realize that calling a pc exclusive a 'bad port' is pretty moronic?

This made me realize that the divide between platform-racists (everyone who claims the absolute superiority of his or her platform) and the real world is so vast that things like facts can't shake their resolve.

Also loving his review on DA2 btw:
Quote:

I wouldn't know, I'm glad I torrented it or I woudl have been pissed off that I wasted $60.
So... he's pirating software and then complains about its quality? Ranting about bad console ports while he doesn't pay a single dollar for the games he plays. This fine specimen is a prime example why pc gamers as a whole have a bad reputation.

Pedro 05-20-2011 12:32 PM

Re: The Witcher 2
 
That's awesome :cool:

On the subject of console ports of the Witcher 2, there are some menus etc which could be construed as being created with consoles in mind, and no doubt that's where it is coming from, but these complaints are really putting the cart before the horse and are doing PC gamers no favours in general.

I do have a lot of sympathy for gamers sufffering from poor ports - for example Oblivion was just terrible on PC due to the UI. I played it on console, but picked up a cheap PC copy so I could play mods, and I really couldn't believe that they released it like that for PC.

UltimoCroft 05-20-2011 01:39 PM

Re: The Witcher 2
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Pedro (Post 196646)
I do have a lot of sympathy for gamers sufffering from poor ports - for example Oblivion was just terrible on PC due to the UI.

Yeah Oblivion was a pretty low point, I agree. It's more annoying because if it wasn't for PC gamers Oblivion wouldn't even exist in the first place -- since it's PC gamers that helped Elder Scrolls grow -- so to do what Bethesda did was an absolute insult.

With the Witcher 2 I've also noticed certain things that seem like it would be suited to a typical console game, but it's not to the extent where it is harming the game on PC at all.

Li-Ion 05-21-2011 04:23 AM

Re: The Witcher 2
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Pedro (Post 196646)
On the subject of console ports of the Witcher 2, there are some menus etc which could be construed as being created with consoles in mind, and no doubt that's where it is coming from, but these complaints are really putting the cart before the horse and are doing PC gamers no favours in general.

According to this logic Starcraft 2 is also a console port, since the interface looks like the designers spent way too much time on xbox live. Dragon Age 2 must be an iPhone port then, since the menu system looks like it borrowed some nuts and bolts from apple software. I think that's just a general trend because a lot of people think of consoles when they think of gaming. Thus the interface has to look like on consoles, otherwise it's no game ;)

And yes, there are plenty of horrible console ports. Oblivion, Dead Space, Resident Evil 4, Halo, Halo 2, Assasins Creed etc. are just the tip of the iceberg.

Pedro 05-22-2011 06:11 AM

Re: The Witcher 2
 
Finally got as far as Chapter 1. For deep world building, characterisation, and writing, this is head and shoulders above almost everything else out there.

Combat is pretty cool, once you figure out what the hell you're supposed to be doing. Groups of enemies will bunch up so it is hard at first to split them off from the pack so you can go mano-a-mano, so you have to figure out the best combination of traps, spells and swordplay to deal with them. For example you can lay down a trap that immobilises one of them, while casting shield on yourself and attacking the weaker guys to thin them out a bit. It can be quite strategic.

There are lots of little weird things like mini games, QTEs, and timing-based challenges (for example evading the dragon). Where these things (like changing to a top-down view) were lauded in Nier, I feel they're a little out of place in an immersive RPG like this.

Still early days though.


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