Gaming

Everything you need to know about The Witcher 4



(Pocket-lint) – The Witcher saga has become a cross-cultural phenomenon, with Netflix’s TV adaptation of the source books only enhancing the interest in CD Projekt Red’s series of games about Geralt of Rivia.

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt came out back in 2015 and, a couple of excellent expansions aside, is the last full game in The Witcher series, but we now know another is coming. Find out all the key details, right here.

The Witcher 4 release date

CD Projekt Red announced the next Witcher game was in the works in March 2022, confirming rumours that it would indeed be returning to the dark fantasy world after its extensive dabble with science fiction in the form of Cyberpunk 2077.

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However this announcement is clearly a very early one – it’s obvious from the language that the game is still in the early stages of development, and the developer simply wanted to let people know what it was embarking on, rather than giving any really concrete details.

The announcement does have a couple of key details, though, including the fact that the game will be built on Epic’s Unreal Engine 5, rather than CD Projekt’s own engine like most of its games historically. This is a major change but might be a canny reaction to the huge technical issues that plagued Cyberpunk on its release.

However, there is no timeline on a release date or even a window – the game is still a long way off, although it finished the concept phase and moved to pre-production in May 2022, according to its developers.

In September 2022 CD Projekt Red gave another small update, confirming that the game is codenamed Polaris, and that it’s underway, as previously reported.

Most recently, in October 2022, CD Projekt joint CEO Adam Kicinski said during an investor call that the game was likely to be more than three years away, putting The Witcher 4 potentially on course for a 2025 release date at the earliest.

The Witcher 4 title

Of course, we’re calling the game “The Witcher 4” at present since it’s the fourth main game in the series, but we don’t actually know what the game will be called. After the first game each Witcher title had a subtitle (Assassin of Kings and The Wild Hunt respectively), so we could be in for a numbered entry with a new subtitle.

Equally, the announcements are leaving the possibility very much open that we might not be getting a full sequel, but rather a spiritual continuation, with new characters and perhaps locations. It’s all up in the air, but for now we have no idea what the game will be called.

The Witcher 4 story

In line with that speculation about the game’s title, its story could go in myriad directions. While the games have basically covered much of Geralt and Ciri’s fated journeys, especially in The Witcher 3, there’s still loads of material from the books that could be used.

For one thing, Geralt’s a long-lived guy so could easily accommodate stories in flashback form, with a younger outlook, while Ciri’s adventures through different realities also offer up plenty of options.

The teaser image is of a different sort of Witcher medallion, though, either a cat or a lynx of some sort, so there are plenty of suggestions that we could meet an all-new protagonist from a different, henceforth unknown Witcher school.

That would be intriguing, while the amount of snow in the teaser image also suggests that we could be in for a more wintery time of it when the game does eventually surface.

One key bit of information at this point, though, is that the game is currently planned as the first in a new trilogy, so there will be plenty of stories to tell when it does land, and the promise of another epic saga that spans multiple games and quite possibly console generations.

The Witcher 4 gameplay

There are some elements of the upcoming game’s actual systems that we can be fairly confident of – we’d assume that hack-and-slash RPG combat will return, hopefully with an even smoother and more responsive combat system.

If you’re playing as a Witcher then magical signs will again let you power past opponents, while we’re also hoping that the game is another open-world title. The change to a full open-world was revelatory for The Witcher 3, after all.

Graphically the game is nearly guaranteed to run only on current-gen hardware, meaning the PS5, Xbox Series X/S and PC, so we could be in for a visually stunning game. If Cyberpunk’s performance now that its next-gen version is out can be a guide, things could look really gorgeous.

Writing by Max Freeman-Mills.





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