Before I start my review I just want it to be known that I played this on my Xbox one, and thus the review and my thoughts are based on playing it through my Xbox one.
Well, this game is quite simply, HUGE! It is the only way to say it. There is so much you can do in this game that it’s no wonder that on ‘How Long to Beat’ people have clocked in almost 500 hours to complete everything in the game. But anyway we will come back to this later, first.
Well, this game is quite simply gorgeous, beautiful and amazing to explore in and see the sights that it has to uphold. Even after been out a few years it is an enjoyable piece of software to see through your television. Seeing the birds fly off in their flocks in the distance is not something you see in many games, and shows a vibrant world that you have been given the pleasure to explore.
Now obviously it is not top of line graphics, if you want it in 4k ultra high definition I always will say get a PC, that is and will always be the graphics monster to play games on. But for a Xbox one, it does give it a full work out in graphics, to such extent that you see the extra layers of detailing in the grass been drawn as you sprint through the game world. But as I said for a visual world, the armor and weapons you uses the signs you use in combat looks amazing, even on the Xbox one.
Now here comes one hell of a problem when it comes to Witcher 3, the gameplay, it is very clunky, to say the least. Simple tasks like going up or down a flight of stairs can lead you to have to try it 3-4 times as the camera likes to go off on is own or give you camera angles that do not help.
Traveling on Roach, your horse, is another notable piece of gameplay that can be annoying, especially when traveling through woodland and off the beaten track. Now yes when you are on the track you can hold the A button down and it should keep to the path that you are on, however, this does not happen all the time. If a branch gets in the way Roach will veer off course. One part of the game has you chase after someone on horseback through a battlefield and with the horse-fearing the situation, of which Roach has a fear meter when enemies are nearby, you can get thrown off if you don’t calm him down. Given that your busy chasing after someone you do not really have time to slow down and calm the horse down, as you will probably get thrown off enemies, or attacks and lose your target.
The fighting gameplay again, is clunky, when facing multiple enemies. The game teaches you at the start to target the enemy with your right thumbstick, but it is very hard to keep the camera steady to aim it when you are diving all over the battle avoiding been hit. So all in all you just resort to the more Batman Arkham Asylum style of fighting in the game, while hitting them with the odd sign to give you time to quick see the battlefield and what you got to deal with.
As I eluded to at the start of this review, this game is huge in terms of what you do in it. For this review, I complete the main quest, of course, some side quests, as many as I could find that could have some sort of impact on the main quest. In other words, side quests involving characters in the main quest line. Various Witcher quests where you fulfil witcher contracts, and that is it. All of that came to around 3 days of gaming, roughly 72 hours, and that was without bearly touching gwent, the witcher contracts and I had at least 20 side quests I had not done in my list ready to go, so the amount of quests alone is huge.
This does not even go into things you bump into on your travels, little side quests you do on the spot, or in conversation. The monster nest that can give you loot, and abandoned villages that you wipe monsters away from to replenish the village of its inhabitants once more. The to top it off you get treasure hunts, where you find diagrams of technology and maps, that lead you to high-quality gear and weapons for you to use in the game.
To add to that the different ways to do missions, different routes to take with conversations and inquests regarding big characters, this game will have you coming back for more whether on a new game +, which is a free DLC, in the same playthrough to complete extra content, or free DLC quests you can get, or just to play more gwent. So, all in all, you will be coming back to this game whether it be straight away months later or to do the DLC content that has recently been released.
This game is huge, massive, and you will be coming back for more. It is a game I wish I picked up earlier due to the fact I had really got into Elder scrolls Online, a review is up on the site, and begun using ESO plus, that I had to feel like I was rushing the game. Something I will correct in a new playthrough soon.
It is definitely well worth the price and given you can pick it up for around £25 you will get 10 times that in hours in gameplay. The story is engaging whether the main quest or side quests, so whether you enjoy a good story or like testing your fight skills you will enjoy this game in some sort of fashion. The only blot, and it is an annoyingly big blot is the gameplay, it is clunky and can lead to bouts of wanting to throw your controller at your TV. But a there is no such thing as a perfect game, and all the best games to have ever been made had their flaws, so if you can get past the gameplay flaws, this game is a definite pickup, just when you do give your friends and family fair warning you may get sucked in.