The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings Review

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Xzi:

sravankb:

awesome_ninja:

DA2 was a POS deal with it...

Again, "opinions". Please try not to force yours on mine.

Thing is, regardless of your opinion, there are subjective facts to be found here. Bioware is under EA now. CDPR is their own independent studio, publishing by Atari. Dragon Age 2 was developed in a little under a year. Witcher 2 took between three and four years to develop.

"Subjective facts"? Wut?

Also, I prefer one over the other. Yes, I do enjoy the more-action oriented gameplay, and liked the characters more in DA2. Why do people seem to have a problem with this?

Another question - why are TW2's fans so defensive? The game is loved by many people and is quite successful as it is. Losing one customer like me won't make a hint of a difference to them.

It's not so much fans of TW2, but more fans of the truth.

If there were valid critisisms or eye-opening game design perception there wouldn't be an issue and the game could get 7/10'd everywhere for all I care.

Problem is the only reason these people can come up with is "it's too hard" or "my hand wasn't held enough" - the reason for this is because they are bad at games and have been raised on 30-hour tutorials and don't know anything about video games.

Surely, even an unreasonable person, can understand why that rubs logical people the wrong way.

beastrn:
It's not so much fans of TW2, but more fans of the truth.

Was that a reply to my post? If it was, then I have a suspicion that you're trolling. Cause liking a game doesn't exactly make you a shining knight who defends the "truth".

If not, move on folks, nothing to see here.

beastrn:
If there were valid critisisms or eye-opening game design perception there wouldn't be an issue and the game could get 7/10'd everywhere for all I care.

Problem is the only reason these people can come up with is "it's too hard" or "my hand wasn't held enough" - the reason for this is because they are bad at games and have been raised on 30-hour tutorials and don't know anything about video games.

Surely, even an unreasonable person, can understand why that rubs logical people the wrong way.

Right now, you are doing anything but being logical. And with that sort of attitude and tone you will not last very long on these forums. Just an FYI.

Gralian:
Without objectivity professional reviews here will be no different from the user reviews, and at that point i have to question the validity of said professional reviews and whether they are even necessary in the first place and what qualifies them to be regarded as professional.

Hmm, something to ponder over indeed. Personally, I think that a professional reviewer SHOULD keep their personal bias in their review. Not everyone is going to see eye-to-eye with the general opinion on most things, and games like DA2 and TW2 are perfect examples of this. Every review really shouldn't just be a copy-pasta of all the others for everything out there, which is really what they would be if everyone were to just remove their feelings from said reviews. Having someone actually put their personal opinions and preferences for a game into their review, I think, is really quite important, because undoubtedly there will be some people who like the same types of games as that reviewer, and some who don't share their preferences at all.

"That's the point of user reviews! Professional reviews should be just that, professional!"

Indeed they should, but being professional doesn't mean keeping your own opinions out of the review, if anything, it should mean the opposite, just doing it well. It should mean being able to criticize something without just bashing it or insulting it, but instead pointing out individual problems, and what they should've done instead. It means being able to point out what the game does right, without just mindlessly praising it.

Really, I think professional reviews should be a balance of giving the reviewers actual opinion on a game/movie/book/whatever, while still being able to look at it from someone else's viewpoint. Every critic just giving one uniform score across the board really doesn't help anyone, since we all have varying tastes, and if they truly removed their own opinions from them, there really would be no point. To help, I think all reviewers should have some sort of article/page listing what their preferences are, so that way we know if their tastes are similar to our own, then we can judge whether the review is for us accordingly, which is actually kinda what The Escapist does (why they all have unique GOTY lists and whatnot), so I say they just keep doing what they're doing, and I actually hope more sites follow suit...and for all I know they do, since I really don't go on any other "game news" site, other than occasionally kotaku, and even then I never really read the reviews.

Forgive me if this makes little sense or if I rambled a bit, it's been a veeeeery long day/evening of work.

beastrn:
No, resvp42, you're wrong. Banter is a cheap alternative to anything actually substantial.

Also in DA2 due to terrible design, most of the time the banter is cancled due to scripted events, fights, or simply because there are loading screens every 5 seconds.

Not opinion, fact. Thus your opinion is wrong. Thus we can make judgments on the quality of your opinion.

Banter is characters talking to each other and you'll notice in the game that the banter actually progresses and is changed by in-game events. BioWare does banter very well. Character development isn't just about major plot points or cutscenes, it's about how characters relate to each other and idle conversation is an important part of that.

You can judge my opinion on character development, but don't call it wrong because you disagree. You are no expert on the subject, I presume.

beastrn:

If you wanted baby-mode-adventure the interactive movie - you should have played on EASY.

I laughed heartily :D
Totally agree with you mate and as with all strong opinons on this website that come from the heart and can offend you will get slapped with a warning for it.
I cannot even BEGIN TO UNDERSTAND WTF IS GOING ON.
Is this a representation of the escapist community?
I mean really Dragon Age 2 gets 5? ( which created a huge shit stir mind you)
And the witcher gets 3.5?
(I bought Dragon Age 2 because of the review on this website and my love for the first btw)
I just am struggling to really comment on this as the language I would use might be to colourful for the escapist community.
I mean with the huge user base is this the best that escapist has to offer to its community?
YES ITS AN OPINION WE KNOW.
Someone can also have an opinion about vintage cars who has no interest in them or ever studied them. That does not mean it will be front page of VintageCars.com.
What I am saying is that maybe someone ELSE should of reviewed this game.
I mean its not fair on Greg to be thrown into the big boys pool when he hasn't learnt to swim.

Calibretto:

What I am saying is that maybe someone ELSE should of reviwed this game.
I mean its not fair on Greg to be thrown into the big boys pool when he hasn't learnt to swim.

You know, there are a lot of really glowing reviews out there for the Witcher 2. You can always read those and get some good vibes. This one wasn't really a bad review, he was just calling it out on some things that frustrated him. Doesn't mean he didn't like it or couldn't play out of incompetence. I don't know why everyone expects all reviews to be the same.

rsvp42:

beastrn:
No, resvp42, you're wrong. Banter is a cheap alternative to anything actually substantial.

Also in DA2 due to terrible design, most of the time the banter is cancled due to scripted events, fights, or simply because there are loading screens every 5 seconds.

Not opinion, fact. Thus your opinion is wrong. Thus we can make judgments on the quality of your opinion.

Banter is characters talking to each other and you'll notice in the game that the banter actually progresses and is changed by in-game events. BioWare does banter very well. Character development isn't just about major plot points or cutscenes, it's about how characters relate to each other and idle conversation is an important part of that.

You can judge my opinion on character development, but don't call it wrong because you disagree. You are no expert on the subject, I presume.

You're right to some degree. Bioware DID do banter well. They don't anymore, however. This is proven in Dragon Age 2 and most of Dragon Age.

I also agree with you that character development isn't just about major plot points. However, in Dragon Age 2 Bioware completely relied on the "banter" for all forms of character progression. It failed miserably. Poorly delivered. Random interjections. No character whatsoever.

Banter is meant to be the icing on the cake, not the entire cake.

Oh, an, I am an expert. Probably the most expertious player on the entire internet.

Rationalization:

Omnific One:
Ah the Escapist... Bioware fanboys to the end... even the editors.

Dragon Age II- Escapist: 100% Metacritic: 79%
Witcher 2- Escapist: 70% Metacritic: 89%

Jesus Christ, you guys really need to get those freaking nostalgia glasses off.

As Skyrim isn't made by BW, I'm calling the Escapist giving it between a 60 and 80%.

The Rasmussen of RPG reviews. Congrats on the title.

Metacritic can be trusted. Also witcher 2 has less than 1/2 the reviews that dragon age 2 does. I disagree with Tito too, the game is perfect and just isn't for the casuals. PC is the bestest of all the consoles EVAR! It has no bugs, it doesn't re-use anything, and the inventory is easy to manage if you're not a noob. That light attack, heavy attack sword system is too deep for people.

Did I say it was perfect? No.

Did I make any reference as to my personal opinion, beyond stating that the Escapist favors Bioware? No. You are extrapolating, and poorly at that.

All I noted was the massive discrepancy, nothing more.

rsvp42:

Calibretto:

What I am saying is that maybe someone ELSE should of reviwed this game.
I mean its not fair on Greg to be thrown into the big boys pool when he hasn't learnt to swim.

You know, there are a lot of really glowing reviews out there for the Witcher 2. You can always read those and get some good vibes. This one wasn't really a bad review, he was just calling it out on some things that frustrated him. Doesn't mean he didn't like it or couldn't play out of incompetence. I don't know why everyone expects all reviews to be the same.

I understand what your saying really I do.
But I have met no one that would say DA2 is 5/5 its the first time that made me really question The Escapist.
I love the escapist and I come here because its my favourite site on the internet and I am sure thats a representation of most people on these forums.
I mean its a gaming website and its reviews actualy get broadcasted everywhere for example DA2 on its website was proudly displaying the escapists 5/5 which made me cringe.
I mean what would people who are not apart of The Escapist community think?
These aren't just games that are "oh its another release" these are games that many people have waited for in anticipation and others who dont know much about the game will look at the review for guidance.
Anyways I will leave it at that rant over.

This review was done professionally, it stated its opinion, and it did not attack anyone.

If you want a reason to get mad at somebody, look at this video.

sravankb:

Xzi:

sravankb:

Again, "opinions". Please try not to force yours on mine.

Thing is, regardless of your opinion, there are subjective facts to be found here. Bioware is under EA now. CDPR is their own independent studio, publishing by Atari. Dragon Age 2 was developed in a little under a year. Witcher 2 took between three and four years to develop.

"Subjective facts"? Wut?

Also, I prefer one over the other. Yes, I do enjoy the more-action oriented gameplay, and liked the characters more in DA2. Why do people seem to have a problem with this?

Another question - why are TW2's fans so defensive? The game is loved by many people and is quite successful as it is. Losing one customer like me won't make a hint of a difference to them.

Yeah, sorry, objective was the term I was looking for there, not subjective. I'm not being defensive at all, just pointing out the facts of it. And I was using this review as a reference point more so than talking to you in a direct manner. I think even most level-head fans of DA2 can recognize that it's not a flawless game, and neither is it deserving of a flawless score. When you give a game a 100%, then it's that game that's going to be used as a baseline for every other review written on the same site, for better or worse. It's unfortunate that Dragon Age 2 had to be that point of contention here, but for that you can blame Tito.

Clunky interface? Poor pacing?

I thought they'd learn from the first game. :|

I guess I'll have to see. If I can get through the first game (still never have even though I bought it a good 3 years ago!), I'll get this one. Otherwise, meh.

Xzi:
It's unfortunate that Dragon Age 2 had to be that point of contention here, but for that you can blame Tito.

Yeh I got no problem with Greg he sounds like a nice guy.
But I guess the best way to analyse the situation is like in a artistic portfolio, YOU WILL BE ALWAYS JUDGED BY YOUR WORST WORK.

So much fanboy rage...

Funny fact that surely no one cares about: what convinced me to buy The Witcher was the Zero Punctuation review. It trashed the game, but at that point in time I already knew Yahtzee's biases, so I expected to really like it, by what I saw in the video.

I guess I don't really care if a reviewer or critic gives a low score for a game I like. People have different opinions, who knew?

JerrytheBullfrog:
Someone pointed out that it would be out of character for this badass Warmaster to have to go through a "and here's how you block" tutorial, so I was thinking - wouldn't it be cool if you started the game as some sort of neophyte recruit who was being GIVEN a lesson by *the* Geralt himself? That'd preserve Geralt as a wise experienced warrior while still introduce newbies to the game.

And then maybe the recruit gets killed and Geralt takes over, providing the player with an immediate emotional attachment to the game. I think it would have been a cool idea.

Now that sounds like an excellent idea!
I'm a huge fan of The Witcher - both games and Sapkowski's writing - but I do agree at least in part with this review. There should have been better explanation given for some things.
I also have a couple of gripes of my own. Don't think I'm hating on the game, though. I loved it, it's easily one of the best games I've played in recent years. I just think it could have been even better.

Firstly, it's too short. Three chapters, with the third chapter being considerably shorter than the first two? I would have liked it to be at least five chapters, all of them at least as long as the first. Maybe CDPR will address this with expansions, as long as they're done better than the "bonus missions" from the first game's Enhanced Edition.

Second, I wasn't all that keen on the storyline. (Although I haven't finished chapter three yet, so I don't know how things will end up with Yennefer, Triss and the Wild Hunt.) I don't like seeing Geralt get so mixed up in politics. I'd rather a game where he traveled from town to town doing witcher's work. Kill some spriggans that have moved into an abandoned mineshaft, investigate the disappearance of local fishermen at night and eliminate the drowners that turn out to be responsible. Perhaps a village suffers from some supernatural manifestation like the Barghests in the first game and you need to investigate firstly what is happening, then why it's happening, followed by who might be responsible and if they're even aware of it before even starting to figure out what to do about it. Maybe this needs some kind of twist so it doesn't get boring, but I'd rather play Geralt being a witcher than him getting involved in the follies of monarchs. Some investigative work could be really interesting if implemented right. I thought the first game had a much better overall plot, with the exception of chapter five's fighting in Vizima.

Third, and most important to my own enjoyment, I thought the alchemy had been far too simplified. I know it's not really a big part of the original lore but I thought it worked very well in the first game, and I miss that. There are no longer secondary effects possible and you don't have to find alcohol of various purities to use as a potion base. You can't just experiment to come up with potions you may not have researched yet and you can't just drink unidentified potions to see what they do. Potions and the associated toxicity also last far too short a time. I would have preferred to see alchemy made much more complex for the second game, rather than simplifying it as it was.

It seems to me that a lot of people here are just complaining about the number differences between the reviews. Witcher 2 lost points because the it is not for every one, they are letting people know that the system is complicated and under-explained. You know your self weather or not that is a deal breaker, so if the flaws pointed out aren't things you consider flaws, then you ignore that part of the review. Don't just look at the score, look at the positives and negatives presented to you and decide for your self if they are what you want/can deal with.

Hard to take a review seriously from the guy that gave Dragon Age 2 a perfect score.

Good God, if the fanboys are getting this butthurt over this review, calling it and claiming it was nitpicking, nonprofessional, I can't wait until when Yahtzee reviews it, where the entire point is nitpicking and all pretense of professionalism is thrown out the window...

I mean damn, I've never seen fanboys get so absolutely butthurt as a result of a review, insulting the reviewer, saying that someone else should have done it, blaming another game, blaming gaming in general... damn.

Omnific One:

Rationalization:

Omnific One:
Ah the Escapist... Bioware fanboys to the end... even the editors.

Dragon Age II- Escapist: 100% Metacritic: 79%
Witcher 2- Escapist: 70% Metacritic: 89%

Jesus Christ, you guys really need to get those freaking nostalgia glasses off.

As Skyrim isn't made by BW, I'm calling the Escapist giving it between a 60 and 80%.

The Rasmussen of RPG reviews. Congrats on the title.

Metacritic can be trusted. Also witcher 2 has less than 1/2 the reviews that dragon age 2 does. I disagree with Tito too, the game is perfect and just isn't for the casuals. PC is the bestest of all the consoles EVAR! It has no bugs, it doesn't re-use anything, and the inventory is easy to manage if you're not a noob. That light attack, heavy attack sword system is too deep for people.

Did I say it was perfect? No.

Did I make any reference as to my personal opinion, beyond stating that the Escapist favors Bioware? No. You are extrapolating, and poorly at that.

All I noted was the massive discrepancy, nothing more.

Did I say you did make a reference to your personal opinion? No. You are extrapolating, and poorly at that.

All I noted was that other commentors, not having to be you as you were not mentioned, didn't like the game. Nothing more.

Don't use Quen to absorb damage, at least not always. It precludes energy regeneration, so you can cast Quen, parry one blow and then sit there with an empty Vigor bar while people kill you. Better use your Vigor on Parrying and dodge the rest of the time. Quen is for times when you can't avoid taking damage any other way, like charging at archers and such.

lithium.jelly:

JerrytheBullfrog:
Someone pointed out that it would be out of character for this badass Warmaster to have to go through a "and here's how you block" tutorial, so I was thinking - wouldn't it be cool if you started the game as some sort of neophyte recruit who was being GIVEN a lesson by *the* Geralt himself? That'd preserve Geralt as a wise experienced warrior while still introduce newbies to the game.

And then maybe the recruit gets killed and Geralt takes over, providing the player with an immediate emotional attachment to the game. I think it would have been a cool idea.

Now that sounds like an excellent idea!
I'm a huge fan of The Witcher - both games and Sapkowski's writing - but I do agree at least in part with this review. There should have been better explanation given for some things.
I also have a couple of gripes of my own. Don't think I'm hating on the game, though. I loved it, it's easily one of the best games I've played in recent years. I just think it could have been even better.

Firstly, it's too short. Three chapters, with the third chapter being considerably shorter than the first two? I would have liked it to be at least five chapters, all of them at least as long as the first. Maybe CDPR will address this with expansions, as long as they're done better than the "bonus missions" from the first game's Enhanced Edition.

Second, I wasn't all that keen on the storyline. (Although I haven't finished chapter three yet, so I don't know how things will end up with Yennefer, Triss and the Wild Hunt.) I don't like seeing Geralt get so mixed up in politics. I'd rather a game where he traveled from town to town doing witcher's work. Kill some spriggans that have moved into an abandoned mineshaft, investigate the disappearance of local fishermen at night and eliminate the drowners that turn out to be responsible. Perhaps a village suffers from some supernatural manifestation like the Barghests in the first game and you need to investigate firstly what is happening, then why it's happening, followed by who might be responsible and if they're even aware of it before even starting to figure out what to do about it. Maybe this needs some kind of twist so it doesn't get boring, but I'd rather play Geralt being a witcher than him getting involved in the follies of monarchs. Some investigative work could be really interesting if implemented right. I thought the first game had a much better overall plot, with the exception of chapter five's fighting in Vizima.

Third, and most important to my own enjoyment, I thought the alchemy had been far too simplified. I know it's not really a big part of the original lore but I thought it worked very well in the first game, and I miss that. There are no longer secondary effects possible and you don't have to find alcohol of various purities to use as a potion base. You can't just experiment to come up with potions you may not have researched yet and you can't just drink unidentified potions to see what they do. Potions and the associated toxicity also last far too short a time. I would have preferred to see alchemy made much more complex for the second game, rather than simplifying it as it was.

MGS Peace Walker does this

Good grief is there some serious fanboy crying here. Seriously guys, a review isn't a personal insult against those who like the game. You don't have to be so up on arms to defend the product that you bought just because someone else didn't enjoy it as much. I've been playing Witcher 2 for a couple days now and am genuinely enjoying myself, but that doesn't mean that I should get all riled up when someone else isn't enjoying it as much. It's their loss, not mine.

And could you please, please shut the frack up about DA2 already.

Sounds delicious. Reviews are aimed at wide audiences, so they can't be relied upon to judge game diffuculty. One just has to keep that in mind.

Haha fanboy whining is delicious! *licks screen*

Well it's nice for the reviewer to give his honest opinion and not feel intimidated or obliged to give this game an automatic 9/10. I still haven't played the game so I don't know how much I agree with him.

beastrn:
hahaha at all the people using the word "fanboy"

Nice to see stupid people exist on the internet even when all the knowledge of the human race is at their fingertips. Doomed to be peasants, I suppose.

Dude, stop while you can. These sort of posts will get you banned.

Also, yes - if you get so defensive over someone else's opinion of your favorite game, then you will be called one; there really isn't another word for it.

sravankb:

beastrn:
hahaha at all the people using the word "fanboy"

Nice to see stupid people exist on the internet even when all the knowledge of the human race is at their fingertips. Doomed to be peasants, I suppose.

Dude, stop while you can. These sort of posts will get you banned.

Also, yes - if you get so defensive over someone else's opinion of your favorite game, then you will be called one; there really isn't another word for it.

1: Do you even read your own posts? You're posting far worse than I am, bud.

2: No, you're wrong. People defending a game that has been unfairly judged does not mean they are a "fanboy". I defend a great many games from uneducated people. Am I a fanboy of each of those individual games? Obviously not.

If you truly must label people discrediting this review as a fanboy it would be a "fanboy of logic and integrity"

3: My post is clearly ironic. Look at all the idiots here saying "lol at the fanboys lol" without any basis. I can't do the same? Herp?

beastrn:
Snip.

I've said this once, and I'll say it again. This review was his opinion of the game, not an "unfair judgement". You're not gonna change his view, and you're not gonna change the view of people who dislike it. Especially with that attitude. And please stop painting yourself as some sort of defender of logic and integrity. It sounds really odd.

Plus, you're a brand new user; not even close to being a regular on the site. You cannot seriously expect me to detect "irony" in each of your posts. Sarcasm/ironic statements do not come across well over the internet.

Most of all, you may wanna calm down, dude. Trust me, people aren't gonna pay too much attention to your posts on this site if you keep insulting someone or the other each time.

There is no time between pressing a button and witcher blocking. It just happens that blocks use up Vigor, and if you're out of it, well, axe or mace goes straight to your face.

Also, map is not in Cyrlic, but some fictional language. And you're not meant to even try reading it - just a decoration.

sravankb:

beastrn:
Snip.

I've said this once, and I'll say it again. This review was his opinion of the game, not an "unfair judgement". You're not gonna change his view, and you're not gonna change the view of people who dislike it. Especially with that attitude. And please stop painting yourself as some sort of defender of logic and integrity. It sounds really odd.

Plus, you're a brand new user; not even close to being a regular on the site. You cannot seriously expect me to detect "irony" in each of your posts. Sarcasm/ironic statements do not come across well over the internet.

Most of all, you may wanna calm down, dude. Trust me, people aren't gonna pay too much attention to your posts on this site if you keep insulting someone or the other each time.

You don't need to repeat yourself - it has already been explained to you why you're wrong. You should read those posts again.

So what if it is an opinion? Do I care? Is that the point? It's an UNEDUCATED opinion. It's a FLAWED opinion. That's the issue. Do I go out and have an "opinion" on thousand year old artifacts? No, of course I don't. I haven't studied history nor have I a strong background in artifact analysis. If I went to a museum and said "guys, guys - this pot here actually is pretty dumb. Actually I don't like it. That's my opinion, ok?" I would probably be banned from the premises.

So.. sure, you're right. It's just his opinion. The fact is, though, that it's an uneducated opinion.

FYI - arguing with me on this point makes you an escapist fanboy, according to you.

sravankb:

beastrn:
Snip.

I've said this once, and I'll say it again. This review was his opinion of the game, not an "unfair judgement". You're not gonna change his view, and you're not gonna change the view of people who dislike it. Especially with that attitude. And please stop painting yourself as some sort of defender of logic and integrity. It sounds really odd.

Plus, you're a brand new user; not even close to being a regular on the site. You cannot seriously expect me to detect "irony" in each of your posts. Sarcasm/ironic statements do not come across well over the internet.

Most of all, you may wanna calm down, dude. Trust me, people aren't gonna pay too much attention to your posts on this site if you keep insulting someone or the other each time.

It says he has joined in 2007>? I would hardly call that brand new.
Alot of people just read the forums and dont actually engage in them you know.
Obviously this is a topic he has felt he needs to speak up after 4 YEARS OF SILENCE.

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