Polish developer, CD Project Red, caps off a summer of impressive reveals for its upcoming action, role-playing, fantasy game, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, with a chilling new cinematic trailer.
The trailer opens with Geralt of Rivia, the Witcher himself, witnessing a group of soldiers about to hang a young woman. Since Geralt’s morals are black and white — “Evil is evil. Lesser, greater, middling, it makes no difference,” he says — he decides to intervene by killing all of the soldiers, whom he calls “monsters.”
But hold on a second? Didn’t the soldiers say the woman had been found guilty “for the murder of the wounded, looting, cannibalism”? If that is true, then things are not as clean-cut as Geralt wishes them to be. Who is the real monster here? The soldiers? The woman? Or Geralt?
It is an interesting introduction to the world of The Witcher 3 and a great way to emphasize the morally ambiguous choices that players will make throughout the game. Moral choice in video games have often stumbled for their lack of ambiguity: usually just a simple good or bad choice. Since Geralt says, “If I’m to choose between one evil and another, I’d rather not choose at all,” it seems possible that players might have to make choices between the lesser of two evils, or decide to walk away.
This would add to what is already an impressive story-focused game. In its E3 gameplay demo, the developers emphasized the emergent story-telling style of The Witcher 3. For example, players could be hunting a griffin when they are sidetracked by a group of bandits in the woods. Players can take care of the bandits and then continue on with the hunt without the game pulling them out of the mission.
Perhaps the only hiccup in CD Project Red’s promotional campaign was the news last month that the game would be delayed from its original fall release date. It will instead be released for Playstation 4, Xbox One and PC on February 25, 2015.
It joins a list of other high-profile games, including Batman: Arkham Knight, The Order 1886, The Division and Mad Max, that have moved out of the traditionally release-heavy holiday season to an unusually crowded first quarter of 2015. This has upset many gamers wishing to see more content on the new generation of consoles.
In an explanation for the delay, the developers stated that the studio needs more time to fully create the open world of the game. Since they have boasted that The Witcher 3 will have the biggest living fantasy world ever created, this isn’t an unreasonable claim. The third installment of this series is more than thirty times bigger than its predecessor and 20% bigger than Skyrim.
So what do you think? Are you excited for February to get your hands on The Witcher 3? Did the latest cinematic trailer give you goose bumps? Let us know in the comments!