THE WITCHER III: WILD HUNT - BLOOD AND WINE
By Diana "DumeeGamer" Dumee on June 6, 2016
Whoosh!! Do you remember that sound? It was last year, when we were all blown away by the release of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt! And CD Projekt Red wants more. Now, a year after the release of The Witcher 3, we can all enjoy even more adventures of sir Geralt of Rivia in the Blood and Wine expansion pack. And thatís what we all want, right?
Quick resume; The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is an open world action RPG and the protagonist is Geralt of Rivia. Heís a monster hunter, also known as a Witcher. Because of his knowledge of all kinds of monsters (mostly on how to kill them), he is wanted by many people across the land to solve the problems these monsters are creating. But Geralt also has a few problems of his own to solve. And of course, these problems are all about women. Heís in search of Ciri and Yennefer. I hope this does ring a bell. Athough you donít need to know all the ins and outs of the original game to understand the story of the new Blood and Wine expansion, it does help put certain things in perspective. And it helps if you have played quite a bit of the original story, because youíll need to at least be level 34 if you want to successfully make your way through this expansion!
Lucky for all of us, CD Projekt Red was kind enough to offer us three choices. You can pick up the game where you left off and play the expansion alongside the plot, or you can start a new game and have the game create a nice suitably equipped Geralt for you. The latter option means however, that the main quest from the Wild Hunt campaign will be unavailable for you to play. So if youíre close enough to level 34 at least, pick option one and donít miss out on the main campaign of Wild Hunt. If youíre nowhere near level 34, donít be a cocky and go for the second option.
The minute this expansion starts, Iím already convinced. I know this game is about Geralt or, more to the point, his last adventure, but the thing that really got my attention is the scenery. The world of Toussaint is a fantasy image of France or Italy. The narrow streets that litter the towns or the big fields and big farm houses; it all looks truly breathtaking. And yes, Geralt still looks cool and a bit mysterious.
At the start of the game, I didnít receive any objectives and there was no introduction of what I am doing in Toussaint, but pretty soon I discover a notice board and there it is; my first quest: Envoys, Wine Boys! Taking on this mission soon leads to a big fight with the giant Golyat. After my glorious victory, I follow my newfound friend Milton, who explains why I am here in Toussaint. After this, weíre off, heading to a nice-looking castle to meet a Duchess. At this point, the gameís title comes on screen, so now the game has really started. It was in that moment that I realized that the awesome battle I just fought is just a harbinger for things to come, and this was only the introduction. In my head, I can hear the Carpenters singing: ďWeíve only just begun.Ē Oh man, this is going to be awesome!
And it is awesome! Blood and Wine features all new environments to visit, new characters to meet and, of course, new beasts to slay. At the same time, it features the good old menuís and smooth controls that Iíve come to know from the original Wild Hunt. Itís amazing how some side quests at first sight, donít look very important. Well, they wonít change your fate or anything, but theyíre well thought out and really fun to play. One side quest was about searching for stolen testicles (of a statue, donít worry) and in the end it turns out an old man stole them because of its stimulating effects, if you know what I mean. He made one woman very happy, three times a day!
As in the original Witcher III game, there is quite a lot of swimming, sailing and horseback riding involved. Your noble steed Roach is back to fulfill his task and is always within reach when you need him. If this all is to slow for you, you can always use fast travel. Although this is the fastest way to get around, I wouldnít recommend it. To me, it just seems like a waste; I love to stroll around in the beautiful world, looking for herbs, hidden treasures or beasts to slay. But, if youíre only interested in achieving your goals as quickly as possible, it does help you get to where youíre going in the shortest amount of time possible.
You should definitely buy this game and experience it yourself, especially when you have a weak spot for a good story and/or action RPGís. I would love to stay and tell you more, but I canít, for two reasons. One; I would only spoil the fun. And trust me when I say that there is a huge amount of fun to be had. And second; I want to get back to Toussaint as quickly as possible and play more of this awesome game!
THE WITCHER III: WILD HUNT - BLOOD AND WINE
CD Projekt Red
May 31, 2016