Mouths are already watering at the prospect of The Witcher 3, the latest entry in the hugely popular adult fantasy RPG saga, but now more detailed gameplay features are starting to be revealed to the press.
German website World of Players recently spent a big chunk of time playing a preview build of the game and, thanks to translation from Eurogamer Germany, we can see what the fuss is about. Among the morsels of fact tucked inside the feature are confirmation that the game will be fully open world, with no restrictions on travel at the start of the game. There will be three major areas of the world, and monster-slaying anti-hero Geralt will be free to roam them. With so much more ground to cover, he'll now be able to ride horses and also use boats to get around, as well as a fast travel option.
Geralt will also be more nimble on foot, able to jump and climb, while combat will feature a slow motion precision mode in which you can accurately target your attacks to vulnerable spots on enemies. There'll be hunting in the game, and you'll be able to craft new items and weapons from the fur and claws you gather. You can use these yourself, or sell them for gold.
Interestingly, it seems that you'll no longer earn XP simply for killing enemies and creatures but only for completing quests and other tasks. The story mode is said to last at least 50 hours, and you can double that if you plan on doing all the side quests. Your actions can lead to 36 different outcomes for the world you inhabit, while the story will have three playable epilogues, depending on your decisions, each lasting an hour.
It's shaping up to be a massive game, and one that should kick the next hardware generation off in style. The Witcher 3 is in development for PC and PlayStation 4. We'll know more about its future on Xbox once Microsoft lifts the lid on its new console.