Developer: CD Projekt RED
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive
Release Date: April 17, 2012 (Xbox 360)
Genre: Third-Person, RPG
Rating: M

There are so many reasons that The Witcher 2 belongs in GameDrunk’s Treasure Chest. CD Projekt RED is arguably the coolest development house out there. They constantly go above and beyond to increase the overall experience for gamers and are renowned for their sterling reputation with the gaming community. This game, the Xbox 360 version of Witcher 2 is a prime example of this reputation. Not content to simply port their successful PC series over to the 360, they completely revamped the combat system to better suit consoles, made enhancements to the graphics engine and added content to the game. They have done numerous cool things for the gaming community such as offering the additional Witcher 2 content as DLC to PC gamers for free. To quote their co-founder, Marcin Iwinski “I think the value in the whole proposition is that we are honest, straightforward, and fair, and this pays back. So you can call it a business model, in a way.” Seem like cool guys to me.

In addition to this game being made by cool guys, it features many cool things. A bad-ass protagonist with a mysterious background. Imaginative and interesting characters with cool stories of their own to interact with. Varied and atmospheric environments that range from serenely beautiful to pants-loadingly creepy. Plus, boobs, sex, whores, drinking and fighting. One of the characters in the game even got her own Playboy spread – from which we found several pictures we will share with you later in the post.

Geralt and Triss (the Playboy model) enjoying some alone time.

It’s difficult to come up with more convincing arguments to elucidate the quality of this game. It is very easily found for a cheap price ~ $20, maybe less. The storylines are very intriguing and the game plays out sort of like one of those “Choose Your Own Adventure” books wherein the choices you make determine the course of the game offering great replayability. The voice acting is up there with the best games I’ve experienced, there are a handful of mini-games to distract you if you’re bored with the main quest. I’m not sure visiting brothels counts as a mini-game, but I’ve certainly distracted myself from the main campaign to visit each of the fine ladies in each establishment in each town.

The game is not without fault, however. Though the combat system was revamped for the Xbox 360 console, it still leaves a lot to be desired. The combat is clunky and not at all intuitive, it is difficult to take a keyboard and mouse based combat system and restrict it to the few buttons allotted on a console controller. I wish I was able to come up with some brilliant way they could improve upon their implementation, but I think this is just one of the pitfalls of bringing a PC game to the console. The combat suffers.

In my opinion, the protagonist is quite interesting. I’ve always been a fan of having some things left to the imagination and there are a lot of holes in the Witcher back-stories that you are allowed to create yourself. That’s not to say they aren’t doing a good job of spinning a compelling narrative for you. Each character you meet is more interesting and shady than the last. You never really know who you can trust and it’s a lot of fun to watch it all play out and then start over and try differing decisions to see new stories unfold.

All this being said, it’s a game that any self-respecting, adult gamer should at least try.

Enjoy the boobs:

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  1. avatar Matt says:

    Wes…..we should be talking about the true version of this game on the PC. Regardless, thanks for the fake boob images.

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  3. avatar Angela says:

    Finally the Witcher 2 review is here! Finally all the winhing about people winhing on where’s TW2 review is can stop. Great review, Joe. It’s nice to see a reviewer who likes challenge and doesn’t like the hand-holding gameplay that plagues most games today. You shouldn’t be ashamed of comparing TW2 t o Dragon Age 2, seeing as DA2 is the only big RPG released so far this year. Also, it’s a good example of a sequel doing more things wrong than right unlike TW2. Besides, the likes of Bioware taking digs at FFXIII, a game I’m not a fan of, but when a developer takes shots at a competitor isn’t that a dick move?On the things you mentioned in the review, like the blocking something don’t work. Blocking is tied to your vigor so you were probably out of vigor, hence why you couldn’t block. I’m fine with that because if you can block all the time, your strategy will only consist of holding down the block button and strike straight after enemy makes their move. Anyway, there’s a mod out to have blocking not tied to vigor.Regarding the tutorial, it didn’t bother me as all the information you need are on the manual and journal. I’m into old-school RPGs like Planescape: Torment, Baldur’s Gate and Gothic series, so reading the manual is must for me, besides I like reading them when it comes to RPGs. I had no problem with not being able to drink potions during a fight, the game usually let’s you know when a boss fight is coming up.The lack of fast travel also didn’t bother me. The world isn’t huge like in Oblivion so I don’t think fast travel is necessary. Besides, I like to travel on foot to admire the awesome scenery.While there are less women to do it with and no more sex cards in TW2, the sex scenes are done better than the original. Most of the sex scenes in TW1 consist of Geralt wooing a lady, screen goes to black, sex card comes up and everything is back to normal. The scene with Geralt and Triss in the Elven Bath puts any Bioware’s awkward dry humping to shame.My main criticism of the game is the difficulty curve declines after Act I. I found Act I harder than the other two Acts. I’m used to difficult RPGs and I was hoping it got harder after Act I or at least maintain its difficulty. I mean how satisfying to kill those Queen Endregas, as I used traps, bombs, signs and finishing the beasts off with my sword. I barely died in Act II and III, even with the final bosses. The patch 1.2 addresses frame-rate and responsiveness of the controls, though I had no problems with either, but I’m disappointed that the patch also nerfed the prologue. I hope the next Witcher game, CDProjkect won’t create an easier game and implement hand-holding features just to satisfy those few whiners who can’t seem to find the difficulty slider in the menu. TW2 is difficult compared to your average games, but it’s punishingly hard like Demon’s Soul, a game I also love. Sorry for the long post, but TW2 satisfied me that DA2 didn’t. I got to mention one more thing, the original Witcher was fine game. When it was first released it had its share of bugs and presentation wasn’t as good but the Enhanced Edition addresses a lot of those flaws. Hardcore RPGers should definitely check it out, as you’ll get much more of the story in TW2 if you play the first.

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  4. avatar Barbara says:

    I finished Gemini Rue Wednesday night and have sttared the Blackwell Legacy. I agree that Gemini Rue was very easy. Though, as you say, it seems art direction and story are more the focus with many adventure games these days. Thankfully, I love the pixel art in Gemini Rue and Blackwell.I’m a big fan of the point-and-click adventure game genre and have been for a long time, though there are many classics I’ve missed out on over the years, unfortunately. Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers is at the top of the list of adventure games I know I’ve always missed out on, so hopefully I can get to that soon. There are just so many games to play! (that’s not a complaint )On that note, I’ve heard many good things about To the Moon, as well. I haven’t played it yet, but I’m planning on it. I recall someone here commenting on it (in last week’s What Are You Playing Wednesday post, if I remember correctly).

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