Game of the Year 2015: The Witcher 3

 

By Andrew Mendez

The Witcher 3 is a game which manages to go above and beyond in three main categories that many video games are usually judged for: storytelling, gameplay, and exploration. While a vast majority of multiple open-world games are full of the same cycle of things such as killing a certain type of enemy or random fetch-quests, The Witcher 3 allows players to do so much more.

The best part about The Witcher 3 is its seamless infrastructure. You never feel like anything you’re doing is out of place or out of character. There are side quests in this game that can take hours to fully complete and the entire time it doesn’t feel like a drag or a chore. Everything you do in the game is incredibly satisfying and rewarding, whether it’s the compelling main storyline, the side quests, contract killings, or even playing cards, it all feels like natural progression and nothing stands out as a sore thumb in the overall narrative. It doesn’t try to act like a “list of things to do” but rather plays out like a “look at all that you can do”.

Most open-world games suffer heavily from a lot of empty space while going from one location to the next. This is not an issue in The Witcher 3. The scenery is absolutely gorgeous, full of a special kind of vibrancy. There will be enemies and treasures and side quests that will randomly show up as you traverse the various portions of the game. The amount of world-building the game offers is incredible. Whether it’s from looking at the in-game codex or just striking up conversation with regular townspeople, you learn more and more about the world you’re playing in.

The main characters in the game are incredibly fleshed out. Everyone feels like a real person with real problems. They have certain viewpoints about certain situations and are flawed. It really brings out just how phenomenal the writing is in the game. Even the townspeople have personalities to them. It doesn’t feel like they’re just plowing through with tons of exposition to advance the plot. Everything feels like a regular conversation. I found myself enjoying the people in the game, even if I only knew them for a single quest line and never saw them again.

The game’s fluid and real-time combat is noteworthy as well. You have a plethora of options to use when fighting against enemies. A weapon for humans, a weapon for monsters, a crossbow, and five spells make up your arsenal. This doesn’t include bombs that you can create through crafting or the parry system that the game offers to you as well. The crafting and alchemy system is extremely fleshed out. You can craft bombs and weapon enhancements, and with alchemy, you can create different kinds of potions that give you special types of abilities or heal you.

The Witcher 3 is one of the most complete and incredible experiences for players given its efficient performance and versatility, and is still being supported with extra DLC storylines as well. satisfying, it’s engrossing, and it’s the best game to come out in the last year, as well as one of the better games of the entire decade.

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This article was written by a previous member of the Vector Staff, a member of the Vector who does not have staff privileges, or by multiple authors. Author credentials are given at the bottom of the article.

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