Topics I've Started
Today, 11:46 AMOne of the coolest things about the Witcher universe is the modest, realistic design of weapons and armour. This really brought some immersion because everything looked real and functional. There were no spiked pauldrons, horned helmets or swords the size of houses. I'm a sucker for immersion and in most cases immersion and realism/credibility are inexstricably linked. I've enjoyed plenty of games that weren't realistic or didn't look realistic but the immersion just wasn't there. Thus I was terribly disapoointed, yet not surprised, to find that the plate armour in the Witcher 2 only has aesthetic purposes. To defeat your heavily armoured man-at-arms all you need do is bash his head with your sword - this I do not care for at all :/
I can see why it might be an unavoidable issue in the combat system, and I can live with that, but when plate armour is portrayed as utterly useless in cutscenes too that's something else entirely. Within the first hour of the game you see plate armoured having the same protective value as butter. When charging La Vallette Castle there's one man-at-arms stabbing right through his opponent's stomach, even though it's protected by a cuirass, and the sword goes straight through him even though the angle is so bad that even the strongest of blows would have been redirected and done no real damage. Then we get to fight Aryan (This might be one of the reasons I always let him live)and should we decide to kill him we get an awkward scene where, in the end, Geralt stabs him through the chest ... through plate armour. What's the point of acquiring a suit of armour that's very expensive and laborious to make if it does nothing to stop blows? The last example is in Vergen where Prince Stennis is literally beaten to death with shit-covered sticks. This could work as he's not wearing a helmet but no matter where he's struck, on his torse too, we get these odd splat-noises.
Don't get me wrong, TW 1 and TW 2 are my favourite games but there's always room for improvement and adressing aforementioned issue in TW 3 be awesome.
Here's two ideas I'd like to see implemented.
1. Make specific anti-plate finishers that we can use when killing off stunned men-at-arms. Geralt could knock over his opponent, grab his dagger and stab through the visor, he could deliver a murder stroke with the pommel or quillons or he could strike his opponents face with aard thus opening the visor and then stab him in the face or elegantly slicing his throat with his sword. These are just a few examples but I'd love to see something like this.
2. Heavily armoured opponents can only be killed when and if they're A: stunned (you can stun them by using aard or by simply hitting them - the latter is unrealistic but you could make it work), B: thrown off or into something with aard or C: hit with igni. I like this idea because it would force you to adapt dynamically to changes on the battlefield and you'd have to think tactically. For example, you might need to kill off the lightly armoured opponents before commencing a rather long finisher-animation that might leave you exposed.
So far I haven't really given TW 1 and 2 too much credit for their amazing work so let me just finish by saying that I LOVED the sound effects in TW 2. Even though the plate armour didn't make opponents fight differently I got goosebumps from listening to the sound of the plates clanging whenever I struck an opponent or whenever men-at-arms were just walking around. Kudos, more of that please. And again, TW 1 and 2 are my favourite games so please don't take the criticism the wrong way.
03.12.2013 @ 07:25What I loved the most about the Witcher 1 and what really set it apart from the Witcher 2, which is still awesome as hell, don't get me wrong,was the atmosphere. The Witcher 1 always felt grim, grey, heavy, melancholic and oh-so-beautiful. One the things I enjoyed doing the most was to cease all plot-related activities, turn up the music and slowly walk through the fields of the Outskirts in the early hours of morning (In the game that is). When getting tired of that I'd have a sit next to a friendly NPC and chat with him, possibly in the middle of the night and with a great view of the surrounding landscape.
There was just that special feeling about discussing all sorts of things with an old friend of Geralt or a new acquaintance like the curious girl in Murky Waters. It reminded me of the story where Geralt and Dandelion travel to the end of the world. I've always found something very magical about sitting in the middle of nowhere with a good friend, talking softly while listening to the flow of the river or the wind in the leaves. This, when done in stories, can also greatly help to put things into perspective. For example, when Geralt and Nenneke are talking in her greenhouse, Geralt asks if people shouldn't make advances towards protecting themselves from radiation or something similar to which Nenneke replies that it is too late for that. I might've misinterpreted this, but to me it always seemed like the world was ever so slowly dying which, in the end, made so much of the fighting utterly pointless which again meant that you really got to understand why it is that Geralt always tries to remain neutral. Just always having that itch, that the world of the Witcher was coming to an end just made everything more special, including the quiet talks in the middle of nowhere.
So, this is what I want to see more of in TW 3. TW 1 had lots of these moments, mostly in the open rural areas, but TW 2 often felt a bit too clustered and dense for that kind of moments to appear. Sure there were beautiful vistas and all that but many of them were a bit like a the Star Wars prequels in that "every scene is so dense". Ironically, if there's one place I always really wanted to be and have a chat with Roche, Thaler, Munro, Zoltan it was Loredo's courtyard where his guards are having a feast. It just looked so cosy and that place almost felt secluded enough for those deep in-the-middle-of-nowhere talks. I imagine there'll be plenty of occasions for the aforementioned talks if Geralt is to travel through no-man's-land with Vessemir so let's just hope that they implement some fireside talks with him. Those were my two cents but I do hope some of you will agree
08.06.2013 @ 22:30In the Witcher 1, chapter 1 you meet some scoia'tael elf (The one looking for Haren's goods) who greets Geralt in his own tongue to which Geralt replies something along the lines of "I don't speak your language." Yet in the Witcher 2 he speaks Elfish/Elven/Elvish (What is it again?) on several occasions I believe. Am I the only one who found that a bit confusing?