The Witcher is a pretty huge series. Spanning over three mainline games, 2 TV shows, 2 movies and a multitude of books, there's so much it could do next. With the announcement of a new Witcher game from CDPR, we thought we would go over what we want to see next and what the previous games may have missed.
A New Setting
The Witcher has a complex universe with tonnes of stories and sides to take on the same conflicts. It could potentially take the same angle and still make an interesting game but I'd love to see something different. In their official announcement blog, they revealed it would be "kicking off a new saga for the franchise".
This points at a totally new story for the game and perhaps a new setting. A great way of working around this obstacle whilst providing something fans are familiar with is setting the game at a different time. Perhaps, it could be years after the event of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt or before the events of the first game. The extended universe has explored more than just the games so it's certainly something they could do.
A New Protagonist
This is perhaps a little bit of a contentious choice but it's also a decision that will never keep everyone happy. Setting the next game through the eyes of Geralt might leave some wondering who else could take the reigns and choosing a new protagonist may leave some believing Geralt's tale is still unfinished.
Although I don't believe everything is fully wrapped up for Geralt, we could learn of his tales through the eyes of a different observer or set up his story in unique ways. You don't need to play as Geralt to understand his story. In this sense, playing as Ciri could ease some of this tension, whilst still continuing the base story.
Given who Ciri is and where her story could go, it likely makes the most sense to set the next Witcher game through her eyes but there's always a chance CDPROJEKTRED will throw us a curveball and choose someone entirely new.
A Better Launch
It's no understatement to say that Cyberpunk 2077's launch was a disaster. This being said, The Witcher 3's wasn't perfect either. Still a great game at launch, it had bugs and small issues that took years to properly figure out. A polished launch would really benefit the game. Unfortunately, CD Projekt RED lost a lot of goodwill with Cyberpunk 2077's iffy launch, but The Witcher's next entry gives the company the perfect chance to right their course.
This being said, we have recently found out that the next Witcher game will be made using Unreal Engine 5 - as opposed to their own engine. It seems likely this decision was made so they can rely on the infrastructure it has in place - something used by millions around the world. Although they are giving up a little bit of their own identity, they will be getting a more stable engine.
More Dynamic Gameplay
Although the Witcher is pretty engaging most of the time, it would be nice to see some more engaging gameplay. The detective moments could be more fully-fledged and the world could react to magic in a more organic sense. The world design and philosophy of the likes of Baldurs Gate 3 and Divinity: Original Sin could benefit the moment to moment gameplay exponentially.
If you could play the game and genuinely feel smart for figuring everything out, you may just feel a little more like a Witcher.
The Witcher's combat doesn't feel quite as strong as its excellent worldbuilding and interesting story. By the end of the game, it often felt like a requirement to see everything else, not a joy in itself. This is likely down to the repetition of certain moves, power of magic and a little bit of clunky movement.
The next Witcher game could benefit greatly from a tighter, more intelligent combat that really tests you. It could serve to feel a little bit more like you would imagine a Witcher to fight.
Learn from the first two games
Given its huge success, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt will likely be the single biggest inspiration on the next game. This being said, the previous two games benefit in other ways. The smaller worlds led to more dense areas and fleshed-out characters. Bigger is not always better and this is part of the reason that the first two games have such sticking power.
Instead of working on The Witcher 3, the next game should attempt to synthesize everything we've learned so far. Hopefully, it can pull this off.
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