news\ Feb 5, 2013 at 3:22 pm

CD Projekt RED: 'The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt will be the final game in the series'

CD Projekt RED has officially announced The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, and in doing so confirmed the game will be the final installment in the Witcher series. The game was technically outed earlier today with GameInformer announcing it as their feature story in the upcoming issue, but Projekt RED has since opened up a bit more about the highly anticipated title.

“The captivating and non-linear story of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt takes place in a rich, truly open-world environment. A world which is thrilling to explore, full of daring adventures, momentous quests, memorable characters, and unique monsters. Players will freely travel through woods, lakes, mountains, cities and villages. Each region is inhabited by distinct populations with their own customs, legends and problems.  The world of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is 30 times bigger than The Witcher 2," said Adam Badowski, head of the studio.

Badowski added: “Imagine playing a dark fantasy game with the same great non-linear story as in the previous Witcher titles, but now told in a world you can explore freely with no artificial boundaries. The war-ravaged world is so huge that to reach farther places you will need to ride a horse or sail a boat to get there. A world where your choices have truly epic consequences. From the development side, this goal is extremely demanding. Our team had to make significant design changes and our tech had to be rebuilt. But we believe that this will lead to a completely new level of non-linearity and a whole new, richer gaming experience."

Other features include an improved combat system that "will allow players to feel like a real monster-hunter, a witcher who uses his superior senses and fighting skills to survive in a dark fantasy world--while he embarks on a quest to save his loved ones." 

Not everything about today's announcement was good news though. Part of the official press release included a blurb that Wild Hunt will be the final game in the Witcher series. But why pull the plug on a series that only seems to be gaining in traction and popularity with each release?

"We believe that we should end the series on a high note. Technology has progressed to where we can finally tell the story the way we want, with the visuals we want, in the world we imagined," Badowski explained. "This will be the ultimate fantasy RPG experience, and while we're hardly out of stories to tell, we believe it's time for us to look to new worlds and new horizons to keep pushing the boundaries of what we can create."

Of course, can we really believe Badowski? How many times have we heard of a game being the last in a series, only to have the company release another one down the line. Halo anybody? Sure, it may be a while before we see the next Witcher game, but I'd bet my paycheck (which isn't much) that we will have another Witcher title in the future -- especially if this one sells well. 

Technology is only going to get better, and with the PS4 and next Xbox seemingly on the horizon, I have a hard time believing CD Projekt RED will stop here. Remember, they haven't yet announced platforms, revealing a release on only PC and "high-end" platforms. In all likelihood this means the next PlayStation and Xbox, but this is just the beginning of what those consoles will offer in their lifecycle. Surely, there will be room for improvement.

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is due out sometime in 2014.

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