The greatest game I’ve never played

Dedicated to Digitaltempest
Many Bioware fans who had issue with the Mass Effect 3 ending and all of Dragon Age II probably took MrBTongue’s advice and played CD Projekt‘s The Witcher in order to see a fantastic RPG where your choices really do matter. If you haven’t played it yet. You should. Just like I have.

I was concerned about how this would translate from its Polish origins, but it turns out, the narration is quite familiar and appealing and the soundtrack is great. The Witcher is a fantasy RPG starring Geralt of Rivia who’s been through the joining ritual and become a Witcher. Note that Witchers are sterile (they have no penis) but they sleep with all the things. Sleeping with all the things is important in this game because it earns you special power-up cards and you will want to collect them all. The most important power up, though, comes from Triss, who not only has a card, but also has a full page spread in the Polish Playboy. She has special powers that can do this (and she can also make elves very sad). Sex is also a good way to say thank you to the nice people who do nice things like making potions for you.

Not that the game is only and all about sexy time. There is romance, too. Geralt has several BOYFRAENS, including Iorveth, Vernon, Yaevinn and Siegfried.

And Dandy. OMG Dandy you are fabulous and I promise to make sure you and your lute are never parted again! I just wish I’d read the books first so that I could have understood you better!
Combat can be a little confusing at first, but once you get the swing of it, it is lots of fun and continues to improve as your powers increase (through sex, remember) until you finally get to deliver FATALITY killing blows. Perform enough Fatalities and Geralt will obtain a whole new power: ABOMINATION, where the demon blood in his body manifests and he becomes Geranders.

That’s not to say that Geralt/Gerders becomes completely overpowered, making the game lose its challenging elements. Geralt’s powers and abilities are greatly balanced by his penchant for the drink. While sex gives him power, drinking a lot, which he does whether you like it or not, makes him wander into dark forests and drunkenly text his friends. It makes it generally difficult to complete quests and gambling while drunk doesn’t make you as much money as Geralt thinks it does. This problem can be avoided by not visiting taverns, but of course, that’s not how you play games that have taverns.

The plot is pretty straight forward, yet very compelling. While performing his daily Witcher tasks to free the pantsless village people from monsters for money (the standard rate is 200 orens, unless you are royalty, then it’s 10,000 – okay 8,000 orens, or sex, if you’re sexy royalty. Unless Triss is around), Geralt becomes involved in the political struggles of the kingdom and can choose to make friends with the Giant Squirrels or the Cult of Flaming Roses, commanded by Prince. This is where the Dragon Age II similarities come in, where the Squirrels are like the mages, and the Roses are the Templars, however, the conflict is more clearly and sensibly presented and your choices are not necessarily right or wrong.

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