The Needles: The Witcher 2 Interview

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The Needles: The Witcher 2 Interview

CD Projekt Red Senior Producer Tomasz Gop talks about the future of The Witcher: Sharper story, better combat and, yes, plenty of sex.

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I hope they adopt a fable like combat system because I loath point and click systems these days....there is no interaction with the PC you just sit there and click...its mind numbing.....

The trailer was certainly interesting, and I can't wait for the game to be released.

Currently working my way through the first Witcher, and I'm glad the combat is getting an overhaul in the second game. While I can manage the combat pretty well, it does get a touch annoying at times and is the bit I enjoy least in an otherwise excellent game.

For those wanting to see the trailer, they have it over at gametrailers or the Witcher official site.

God I am excited for this game. Playing the witcher is still one if the best game experiences I've had and I hope this India even better. Personally I'm glad the sex element is getting changed as the first one was pretty childish. Last thing I'm hoping for a the morally grey choices from the first

ZippyDSMlee:
I hope they adopt a fable like combat system because I loath point and click systems these days....there is no interaction with the PC you just sit there and click...its mind numbing.....

Did you play the original Witcher? It had a timing-based combat mechanic; fairly simple, but still more involved than "click and wait for them to die" MMO-style combat. The sequel seems to have the same style.

All this sounds like good changes to me, sounds exciting. Now I just hope the last boss fight won't be as easy as in the first game, and that we'll have the opportunity to choose whether to fight or join the bad guy. Unless the story takes a non-conventional turn at some point, rendering the above moot.

I like that the first game took 80 hours to comlete, gave it a sense of depth and value for money.

Grampy_bone:

ZippyDSMlee:
I hope they adopt a fable like combat system because I loath point and click systems these days....there is no interaction with the PC you just sit there and click...its mind numbing.....

Did you play the original Witcher? It had a timing-based combat mechanic; fairly simple, but still more involved than "click and wait for them to die" MMO-style combat. The sequel seems to have the same style.

Yes and the "click for moar" thing was one of many things that annoyed me, you got little to no bonus for trying to dodge switching between styles was annoying(Jade empire did it better) and the magic/item stuff just got silly with being over complicated not to mention the menu system sucked.

Its probably the best daiblo clone to date but good god the implementations killed me.

I would die a happy death if they went in the direction of fable IE smooth hits,targeting,blocks, special moves and spells.

Looks like they really listened to what people didnt like about the first one and actuallt did something about it. Nice to see them taking the feedback well.

Looking forward to how it turns out on release!

The books were just awesome, but I did find the difficulty curve on the combat to be less than fun.

ZippyDSMlee:
Its probably the best daiblo clone to date but good god the implementations killed me.

...what? I assume you've played both The Witcher and Diablo, but I can't really reconcile that statement in my mind. There's way too much plot and way too little loot for it to resemble Diablo in any way other than very superficially in combat. I'd call it the best BioWare-style RPG made by anyone other than BioWare (and better than some BioWare made, but that's another story). Besides, the best Diablo clone is Titan Quest. Heh.

Anyway, I'm excited for this. One of the few RPGs I'm really looking forward to, because even though the original has its flaws, I can't help really liking it anyway for the things it did do right.

Looking forward to it. The Witcher was one great game.

ZippyDSMlee:

Grampy_bone:

ZippyDSMlee:
I hope they adopt a fable like combat system because I loath point and click systems these days....there is no interaction with the PC you just sit there and click...its mind numbing.....

Did you play the original Witcher? It had a timing-based combat mechanic; fairly simple, but still more involved than "click and wait for them to die" MMO-style combat. The sequel seems to have the same style.

Yes and the "click for moar" thing was one of many things that annoyed me, you got little to no bonus for trying to dodge switching between styles was annoying(Jade empire did it better) and the magic/item stuff just got silly with being over complicated not to mention the menu system sucked.

Its probably the best daiblo clone to date but good god the implementations killed me.

I would die a happy death if they went in the direction of fable IE smooth hits,targeting,blocks, special moves and spells.

Well to be fair, the Fable 1 combat stunk (even Molyneux admitted it) and Fable 2 was pretty much "Mash A to win." In The Witcher there was incentive to switch styles in terms of fast vs. strong enemies, dodging was important for the stronger opponents, and the later combo hits did vastly more damage (once they were unlocked). Calling it a Diablo clone is wrong; it wasn't a roguelike, it didn't have complex stats or equipment, random levels, monster spam, level grinding, etc.

And Jade Empire didn't do anything better.

Nalgas D. Lemur:
...what?

For the record, I was going to say this too.

I thought the first one was awesome, can't wait to see how this one is gonna turn out. Hopefully it won't be such a spec hungry monster either. Some of the later scenes with all the flaming wreckage actually made my computer crash! And this isn't even a slow computer!

The sequel has a lot to live up to but I'm sure they won't disappoint :-)

ZippyDSMlee:

Its probably the best daiblo clone to date but good god the implementations killed me.

Calling The Witcher a Diablo clone is just... wrong.

OP: this is the first place I found out about the sequel and now I'm really looking forward to this. ^^
There is lot of room for ironing out the flaws from the original so considering how much I loved it, the sequel should kick major ass.

Andy Chalk:

Nalgas D. Lemur:
...what?

For the record, I was going to say this too.

Me as well, it'd be like calling Braid a Sonic clone.

I'm really psyched up for this. I'm really glad they're cutting the useless running all over the place. Sending us off on multiple ten-minute treks across the countryside isn't really a good way to tell a story. I'd also say that the moral ambiguity in it was peerless. Not even BioWare's stories matched moral shades of gray like The Witcher. Choices that I thought were good at the time only turned out to backfire at the end of the game- VERY BADLY. And I loved it.

"Can they make those love scenes replayable...please?"

-The single thought running through the minds of those desparate nerds who play The Witcher just for the sex.

The sex in the Witcher was embarrassing but, as there were cards to collect, I felt compelled to get "laid" as much as possible. I'm glad that they are getting rid of the cards and, hopefully, they mean it when they say it's not as juvenile (doubt it will be handled that maturely though).

mexicola:

ZippyDSMlee:

Its probably the best daiblo clone to date but good god the implementations killed me.

Calling The Witcher a Diablo clone is just... wrong.

OP: this is the first place I found out about the sequel and now I'm really looking forward to this. ^^
There is lot of room for ironing out the flaws from the original so considering how much I loved it, the sequel should kick major ass.

Nalgas D. Lemur:

ZippyDSMlee:
Its probably the best daiblo clone to date but good god the implementations killed me.

...what? I assume you've played both The Witcher and Diablo, but I can't really reconcile that statement in my mind. There's way too much plot and way too little loot for it to resemble Diablo in any way other than very superficially in combat. I'd call it the best BioWare-style RPG made by anyone other than BioWare (and better than some BioWare made, but that's another story). Besides, the best Diablo clone is Titan Quest. Heh.

Anyway, I'm excited for this. One of the few RPGs I'm really looking forward to, because even though the original has its flaws, I can't help really liking it anyway for the things it did do right.

*sigh*
The core of the gamepaly is dungeon crawl basically the same formula as Dungeon siege and Daiblo only with timed clicky click combos(which batman:AA dose better) and some poor dodging mechanics, this "R wut" makes the game a daiblo clone or a Crusader clone if it was more RPG than blowing stuff up.... .

Fable and even Jade empire has a more fluid combat system, the witcher felt half baked where as they were fun if not limited. The witcher did not find a good balance between action and tedium, I enjoyed having more control over the character in Jade empire(which is better than the mass effect series gamepaly wise...tediousness aside.) and Fable.

The witcher needs to go in a direction where you can dodge,block and do combos and spells in a more fluid manner than the witchers dice roll based manual shifting system..... its cumbersome and questionably implemented much like its menu system....

Now overall The witcher winds in story and writing while I enjoy fable more......damn its shallow in comparison and the d clones are worse in that regaurd but I always chose fun/game mechanics over story and character. *sigh* I miss the days of code breaker and game shark....at least with them I can fix a bad to mediocre(most games now) games flaws and enjoy it..........*sigh*

I'm quite glad their re-doing the combat and opening it up so much! While the original's combat worked, it got a tad dry after awhile.

Being a jaded RPG player I feel I should be offended that they're "simplifying" alchemy, but I'm not. I think it would be nice to make it more interesting as well.

ZippyDSMlee:
The core of the gamepaly is dungeon crawl basically the same formula as Dungeon siege and Daiblo only with timed clicky click combos(which batman:AA dose better) and some poor dodging mechanics, this "R wut" makes the game a daiblo clone or a Crusader clone if it was more RPG than blowing stuff up.... .

You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means. The rest of the Internet seems to have settled on a fairly specific definition of what "Diablo clone" means, and The Witcher doesn't even come close to it, despite it involving clicking on things to kill them (and if that's all it takes, then TF2 is also a Diablo clone...).

Diablo, or Titan Quest, or Torchlight, or whatever other game in that genre that you prefer (even Borderlands, to a large extent), pretty much all have no character background/development/depth beyond "you're a guy with a big sword" or "you have improbably good skills with a bow despite also having boobs the size of your head" or something similar. They also tend to not have much plot beyond the standard "there's a ridiculously large monster population in the area which could stand to be made dead", with rather little elaboration. The main motivating factor to progress in the game, and even the way progress is measured sometimes, is pimping out your character through a constant stream of random loot drops. Also, you click on stuff a lot.

The Witcher, on the other hand, is largely plot and character driven, has more back story and depth than enemies since it's based on a series of books (at least if you don't skip over all that stuff and spend your whole time killing stuff, but if that's what you're going to do, you're playing the wrong game and won't have a lot of fun), and is almost completely lacking in the whole "loot whoring" system that's a staple of the "Diablo clone" genre. You get new equipment once every several hours if you're lucky, instead of every 20 seconds, and character development focuses much more on decisions you make and interacting with the world/plot instead of just stabbing things in the face a lot.

That's not to say that I don't like both types of games. The two things I've spent the most time playing lately are probably The Witcher and Titan Quest, actually, both of which I really like for rather different reasons. They do both take place in a fantasy world, and I have a sword in both of them, but there's not a whole lot of similarity between them beyond that (and if you haven't played it, the goal when making Titan Quest was "we want to copy Diablo 2 as closely as possible", which they succeeded at). Clicking on enemies to attack them does not a genre define, or else nearly all games with some form of combat in them that have keyboard and mouse controls would be the same genre, and that's just silly. That's like saying a horse and a table are members of the same family because they both have four legs.

Sounds interesting. Maybe I should pick up the first one. Would I miss much on the story going straight into the second?

I stumbled accidentaly on The Witcher, and I loved it. It had so much depth and story, there were characters you could care about, and the world felt as if people lived there, going about their lives regardless of Geralt. I will most definitely buy the sequel.

ElectroJosh:
The sex in the Witcher was embarrassing but, as there were cards to collect, I felt compelled to get "laid" as much as possible. I'm glad that they are getting rid of the cards and, hopefully, they mean it when they say it's not as juvenile (doubt it will be handled that maturely though).

The cards were definitely a bit juvenile (awesome) but I thought the sex scenes themselves were handled quite well, at least in comparison to other mainstream videogames that put it front and center as a component of gameplay. Talkin' 'about Bioware here, of course: The Witcher sex got a bit excessive but it was never anywhere near as cringe-worthy as Mass Effect or Dragon Age.

I mourn the passing of the cards. But as much as I'm bummed about that it's their scrapping of the combat system that's got me really upset. I loved the timing based click system. I hope whatever they come up with is at least that dynamic and engaging. There was something undeniably thrilling about clicking to a rhythm and seeing the swords fly faster. I'd hate to see that slowed down.

Fingers crossed for The Witcher 2's sex and violence revisions.

Mr. Mike:
Sounds interesting. Maybe I should pick up the first one. Would I miss much on the story going straight into the second?

I think it would be a real shame to miss out on the first one. In terms of storyline I honestly can't say how that will affect your experience of the 2nd game (obviously because I haven't played it). If you have a good enough PC to run the first one you definately should pick it up, you can probably get it quite cheap now.

The storyline to the first one is easily one of the best I've experienced though, so I think you should go for it! If you don't enjoy it you have full persmission to kick me in the e-balls :-) ha

ZippyDSMlee:
snip

Stop embarrassing yourself diablo clone is a term used for a specific breed of games, The Witcher can't be fit into the category by any standard. Try googling it perhaps, you might learn something because you obviously don't know what you are implying there.

Grampy_bone:

Can't really talk about Fable 2, since i don't own an Xbox, but i didn't dislike Fable's combat all that much. I overused assassin rush and multi strike, and infernal wrath / divine fury were kinda fun too. Yeah, ok, it got kinda repetitive after a while, but at least it was a bit different from the usual stuff.

tendo82:
I mourn the passing of the cards. But as much as I'm bummed about that it's their scrapping of the combat system that's got me really upset. I loved the timing based click system. I hope whatever they come up with is at least that dynamic and engaging. There was something undeniably thrilling about clicking to a rhythm and seeing the swords fly faster. I'd hate to see that slowed down.

Fingers crossed for The Witcher 2's sex and violence revisions.

This. I kinda liked the dynamic component of the combat, at least it wasn't just pressing number keys. If they're dropping it, i hope the alternative is better (it sounds like it, but i'll have to see it before i judge it).

Plus, i too mourn the passing of the cards. This is perhaps my bias as a concept art and digital illustration lover talking, but they were a nice touch, and led me to dig to discover who had illustrated them. They could have done the cutscenes *and* kept the cards, but oh well.

OP: Anyway, it's true that any follow-up to a good game, or any other work of art or entertainment for that matter, that has met critical acclaim or success is always a tricky thing, specially balancing newcomers with old fans. Never gave it much thought, but i always felt that as far as games are concerned the approach they're taking is the best one: keeping the complexity for those who want to dig in deeper, but making it enjoyable for those who do not. It's a tricky thing to pull off though, the equilibrium required to tackle it makes it a more difficult endeavor than it sounds, and it can go horribly wrong, alienating new and old fans alike. Here's to hoping they get it right :)

Mr. Mike:
Sounds interesting. Maybe I should pick up the first one. Would I miss much on the story going straight into the second?

Impossible to say at this point. But if you enjoyed RPGs like the Neverwinter Nights games or Dragon Age, you should definitely check it out. It's a little dense at times and isn't exactly gentle with n00bs, but it's still a great, great RPG.

Nalgas D. Lemur:

ZippyDSMlee:
The core of the gamepaly is dungeon crawl basically the same formula as Dungeon siege and Daiblo only with timed clicky click combos(which batman:AA dose better) and some poor dodging mechanics, this "R wut" makes the game a daiblo clone or a Crusader clone if it was more RPG than blowing stuff up.... .

--snip--

mexicola:

ZippyDSMlee:
snip

Stop embarrassing yourself diablo clone is a term used for a specific breed of games, The Witcher can't be fit into the category by any standard. Try googling it perhaps, you might learn something because you obviously don't know what you are implying there.

Mmmmmmm I use Diablo clone for any simple combat dungeon crawling game. If that is wrong then I will have to use simplistic diablo like combat RPG.

MA AHAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
:P

Mr. Mike:
Sounds interesting. Maybe I should pick up the first one. Would I miss much on the story going straight into the second?

Yup, this game is basically all about the story. Playing it with no story is like playing serious sam with no guns.

ZippyDSMlee:
Mmmmmmm I use Diablo clone for any simple combat dungeon crawling game. If that is wrong then I will have to use simplistic diablo like combat RPG.

Well, I have better things to do than argue with you, like finish the actual game itself, so we'll have to agree to disagree. By "we" I mean "the entire rest of the Internet", and by "disagree" I mean "accept that you're determined to be wrong". Heh.

As far as people asking whether they should play the game or not: If you've ever played a BioWare game and liked it, you absolutely should, no question. It's the same general structure as they are, but with a different take on it in a darker, more ambiguous world. Tons of good story stuff going on, lots of optional stuff and side quests and decisions to be made so you do have some say in how the game progresses compared to most JRPGs, but still overall mostly linear on a large scale and not a completely open sandbox like some western RPGs. So, pretty much a BioWare game made by some guys in Poland and set in a darker world, where your moral choices are generally between things that both/all have good and bad sides, instead of the traditional BioWare options of being either Jesus or a serial killer.

Andy Chalk:

ElectroJosh:
The sex in the Witcher was embarrassing but, as there were cards to collect, I felt compelled to get "laid" as much as possible. I'm glad that they are getting rid of the cards and, hopefully, they mean it when they say it's not as juvenile (doubt it will be handled that maturely though).

The cards were definitely a bit juvenile (awesome) but I thought the sex scenes themselves were handled quite well, at least in comparison to other mainstream videogames that put it front and center as a component of gameplay. Talkin' 'about Bioware here, of course: The Witcher sex got a bit excessive but it was never anywhere near as cringe-worthy as Mass Effect or Dragon Age.

I thought the cards were really funny. To me it was like the pokemon card game, gotta catch 'em all! The sex scenes were a lot better than Bioware's, which I like to equate to robots having sex. That's something Bioware needs to work on in general though; their characters are always so stiff.

Mr. Mike:
Sounds interesting. Maybe I should pick up the first one. Would I miss much on the story going straight into the second?

I recommend it. It's $20 on steam if you use steam.

Nalgas D. Lemur:

ZippyDSMlee:
Mmmmmmm I use Diablo clone for any simple combat dungeon crawling game. If that is wrong then I will have to use simplistic diablo like combat RPG.

Well, I have better things to do than argue with you, like finish the actual game itself, so we'll have to agree to disagree. By "we" I mean "the entire rest of the Internet", and by "disagree" I mean "accept that you're determined to be wrong". Heh.

As far as people asking whether they should play the game or not: If you've ever played a BioWare game and liked it, you absolutely should, no question. It's the same general structure as they are, but with a different take on it in a darker, more ambiguous world. Tons of good story stuff going on, lots of optional stuff and side quests and decisions to be made so you do have some say in how the game progresses compared to most JRPGs, but still overall mostly linear on a large scale and not a completely open sandbox like some western RPGs. So, pretty much a BioWare game made by some guys in Poland and set in a darker world, where your moral choices are generally between things that both/all have good and bad sides, instead of the traditional BioWare options of being either Jesus or a serial killer.

I dunno Dragon age and Mass effect 2 and to a lesser extent KOTOR and ME felt like half a game due to poor or unfinished implementations, story is nice but it dose not make up for annoying or lacking game play and yes I am looking at you bioshock and you fallout 3 as well......

Also biowares tree dailog system needs to be overhauled and made less shallow its been stagnate since KOTOR really....

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