It may have debuted in May 2015, but The Witcher 3 is still considered one of the very best single player RPG’s ever. Geralt of Rivia has found a place in the heart of millions after his quest to save Ciri from the Wild Hunt. Now, at long last, the award-winning game from CD Projekt Red hits the Nintendo Switch, bringing Geralt’s journey to your commute, holiday, or basically anywhere.
So how does this superb single player adventure translate to the best portable gaming device on the market?
It’s the Witcher 3, so the game’s story is superb and it comes with the DLC content Hearts of Stone and Blood and Wine, adding even more gameplay to the Switch version.
It is the game we all know and love, so I won’t bore you with the details of the story, but needless to say monsters, magic, amazing characters and adventures await, as well as plenty of Gwent.
The controls for Switch are the same as console gamers are used to, with your Witcher sense triggered by ZL, dodge is still B. The Joy cons are a little sensitive on the sticks, so be ready to adjust to that or you can just dive into the settings and reduce it.
Otherwise the gameplay is as you would expect from one of the best single-player romps ever. Combat is exciting, the soundtrack is outstanding, and the breadth of options that were available in the Xbox & PS4 version are still present in this one. In no way have they stripped down the game to fit onto the Switch.
It should be noted that the game is a massive 32GB, requiring a mirco SD card to install.
This is where we encounter our first problems. The Witcher, even 4 years later, is a visually stunning game on console and especially on a quality PC.
The Switch is not as powerful as those consoles given its handheld nature, and as such the visuals do suffer.
When handheld you don’t notice it too much. The screen is small so things like a crisp depth of field don’t really affect anything. When docked though, the difference is easy to see.
While cut scenes and close up main characters are pretty faithfully portrayed, battling multiple foes or wandering through a bustling city can really slow things down and cause a few issues.
But here’s the thing, that simply doesn’t matter.
The Witcher 3 stands tall among games for one simple reason: The enthralling, character-driven story of the game.
For all the choices, exploring, and adventuring you can do it all comes back to the fact that as a set of characters you end up caring about everyone. From Geralt and Ciri to The Bloody Baron or Zoltan Chivay, every character has a depth and history to them that is not found anywhere else. The world truly feels like it would carry on without Geralt and his quest.
That you can play this game on your travels is remarkable, and while visually it may not quite be everything we hoped for, from a gameplay standpoint it is still the incredible journey that it was on Xbox or PS4.
Scenery is still strong, the soundtrack will still grip you and twist the emotional knife. Every element of potions, armour, weapons, and of course gwent is still there.
This is a must-buy for dedicated Switch gamers, and will make any commute fly by.