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  1. #1
    Soldier 95B

    Xbox 360 Exclusive: Witcher 2 includes new content, more coming post-launch

    The Xbox 360 version, which I saw at a preview event in San Francisco, will bundle all of that previously released content when it launches this year -- along with new material.

    Initially, you can access four hours of new playable content and 30 minutes of new cutscenes and video. These new missions take you to new locations, and introduce extra characters and dialogue. But that's not the end of it, as CD Projekt Red plans not to "fire and forget."

    CD Projekt Red plans to support The Witcher 2 on Xbox 360 post-launch, updating the game based on player feedback and even offering new content on top of the new stuff on-disc. "It's very hard to give players something for free on Xbox 360, so we had to come to a decision," said combat designer Maciej Szczesnik. "Do we want to give players the game earlier without the content or do we want to give them everything? We wanted the game to be richer and have all of the content from PC, and even more content."

    "We're not going to stop our support of the game after launch," level artist Marek Ziemak added. "We're launching the Xbox 360 version, but we'll continue to work on both titles parallel, creating some extra stuff and trying to give some extra stuff to players. We never fire and forget; it's against our philosophy."
    The Xbox 360 support for this game is amazing, if they come through. Day one. APRIL 17th!
    Last edited by Soldier 95B; 01-26-2012 at 19:54.

  2. #2
    Soldier 95B
    Here is a small, yet very tasty preview:

    Witcher 2 on Xbox 360 will not hold your hand.

    Walking down the same path as Dark Souls, The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings on Xbox 360 takes a bold stance with its difficulty and complexity. Full of vague character references, sex, precise combat, tight controls, and tough enemies, the fantasy world lives and breathes with or without you. There's no hand-holding, and knowing how well its PC counterpart turned out, this unapologetic RPG is exactly what Xbox 360 needs. Gamers love to debate the differences between hardcore and casual games. While neither category holds a real definition, there seems to be an understanding among gamers as to what's what. Forget the term hardcore, The Witcher 2 doesn't care about categories. It'll let you hang out in its world, but don't expect any handouts. The Witcher 2 might be the first case where a player can call a game "PC-ized" (in contrast to the negative connotation of "consolized"), meaning it's optimized for the complexities of the mouse and keyboard, but adapted for controller play without sacrificing gameplay intricacies.

    In fact, the The Witcher 2 needs every button on the Xbox 360 controller. Not only does every button have a function (down to tapping the back button and clicking both the right and left sticks), combat requires a timed precision rarely found in modern RPGs saturated with action. The tutorial is a requirement, not an option. Every odd combo of brewing potions, using magic, and knowing when to throw a riposte plays a critical role in the simplest altercations in The Witcher 2.

    Mastery of the controls is hardly impossible, but every tactic at the witcher's disposal is a requirement. Bombs, traps, parries, magic, and potions all play into battle. Once you understand combat, the updated camera and accessible movement flow allow players to step into the fantastic world conjured by Andrzej Sapkowski, the original creator of the Witcher stories. The tale follows Geralt of Rivia, a monster hunter, or witcher, as the lore goes. Geralt has cat-like eyes to see in the dark and drinks potions that toxify his system with inhuman powers. Get used to dozens of character names, obscure location references, and a world brimming with life. Like the control scheme, the narrative doesn't hold back regardless of whether or not you can wrap your head around what's happening.

    Should PC players step back into the world of Temeria? That depends. If you conquered The Witcher 2 last year, this "Enhanced Edition" does offer new content. Once you hit Loc Muinne in Act III, Geralt finds two new quest lines (depending on his choice between Roche and Iorveth in Act 2). Fighting through the bad guys and monsters of the new quest line leads to a cool new style of movie, another addition to the Xbox 360 version. The camera swoops through a static point in time, showcasing the chaos of a specific moment, while narration explains the story surrounding the action. While these additional clips are subtle, they positively build upon the tale in new ways.
    CD Projekt Red dumbs nothing down in their adaptation of The Witcher 2 for Xbox 360. Sure there's an animated vignette explaining what a witcher is, but the burden is on the player to catch up with the world's lore, figure out which characters are connected, and learn how to survive in combat beyond an enemy or two. Hopefully this version opens the door for more hardcore content to jump from the mouse and 101-button keyboard to the 18 inputs on an Xbox 360 controller. It can be done.

    The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings Enhanced Edition comes to Xbox 360 on April 17.

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