The Witcher Is Super Cheap For A Spell (Spell, Like A Witch Casts Spells)

You know how you’re always saying that you’ll get around to playing The Witcher games, but when they’re on sale and you’ve got a chance. Well, look, they’re all on sale at GOG, and you’ve got that spare afternoon coming up!

So you’ve got the original game (is everyone willing to admit that the first ten hours are utterly dreadful yet?) at the level of a coffee shop tip at $1.49, The Witcher 2 at a weeny $3, and last year’s The Witcher 3 at half off, down to $26.

1 and 2 are the Enhanced Editions with all the DLC, and should you wish you can also pick up expansions for Wild Hunt at knocked down fees. Not very knocked down though – Hearts Of Stone is a buck cheaper at $10.59, and the not-yet-released Blood And Wine loses a couple of dollars at $21. Or you can get the full Witcher 3 Wild Hunt with all future expansions for $54.

There are over two weeks to take advantage of this, presumably all happening to give Blood And Wine a little push, due on the 31st.

I’ve bounced off all three Witcher games like a big bouncy ball bouncing off another bouncy ball, more’s the pity. I think I’m now saving them for when I retire.


  1. WitcherLoreExpert says:

    Created an account to tell you that witchers use signs, not spells.


  2. leeder krenon says:

    Eggcellent headline, like a birds egg

  3. Darth Gangrel says:

    “So you’ve got the original game (is everyone willing to admit that the first ten hours are utterly dreadful yet?)” No, they were great, much better intro than the Witcher 2 and much better in many other respects as well.

    I bought a new PC recently with the requirement that it should be able to run The Witcher 3 well, but I don’t know if I’ll be getting it now. I usually only pay 5 euros at most for my games, but that’s because my backlog keeps me years behind and now I’m catching up. I’ve finished Shadow Warrior from 2013 and am now going through Dishonored, so I’m not that far behind. Still, I can’t see myself spending 10 times as much on TW3 + season pass, as I normally would on a Goty Edition.

    • Legion1183 says:

      You must have bought a fairly decent PC to be able to run The Witcher 3 well, which, if you’re playing games as old and less taxxing as Dishonored and Shadow Warrior, is rather a waste of money IMO!

      I’m also all for buying games at a discounted price (I’ve ranted quite a few times about how PC games used to cost €30 and now are on par with consoles at €50-€60) but dude, €5??? That’s not even the cost of a beer which lasts you all of 10-20mins to drink. I think devs deserve a little more than that!

      • Darth Gangrel says:

        I haven’t played TW3 yet, but according to can-you-run-it site it reaches TW3’s recommended specs, except for the GPU which is a Nvidia GeForce GTX 680. The CPU is a i7-4770k and I’ve got 16 GB RAM as well as an 256 GB SSD. Didn’t cost much either, because I found it at a swedish trading site and could easily go and carry it home (all 22 kg of it, lol).

        My backlog got so big that it felt wrong to buy new games (though, some offers you can’t refuse) that I self-imposed rules to prevent it from growing. No sequels to games I haven’t tried yet and no game that costs more than 5 euros and I’d only pay that much for games I really want, like Dishonored. It’s not about whether a game or the devs is worth more money, it’s about self-preservation that makes me enforce these rules.

      • abHowitzer says:

        Where the hell do you live that a beer is €5?

  4. RED says:

    “is everyone willing to admit that the first ten hours are utterly dreadful yet?”


    • c-Row says:

      John seems to have a problem with tutorials and game openings lately in addition to being a bad healer.

      • John Walker says:

        It’s hard to make a trend out of one thing in a row.

        I didn’t have trouble with the opening of The Witcher. I found it excruciatingly boring.

        • SMGreer says:

          Look, I think The Witcher 3 is a honest to god masterpiece, I think The Witcher 2 was brilliant too and so I even think the first game is a bit of a diamond in the rough.

          But the first ten hours of it? Awful. Awful, awful…awful.

          And it’s exactly that fact, of all how janky and rough the first game was, that makes the second game’s staggering leap in quality so impressive. Even more impressive when The Witcher 3 was another similar sized leap from 2. That’s some incredibly talented folks.

          But there’s little denying the start of the original game is vague, silly and more than a bit dull. It has its moments in those early hours for sure but it’s quite a slog until you get out of the starting areas and that damned swamp.

          To the game’s credit I became a fan in spite of all that, so there must’ve been some sliver of enjoyment to keep me going.

          • Arkayjiya says:

            The first ten hours of Witcher 1 is probably in my very favourite parts of the entire trilogy. The way the village’s story was handled was incredible, I loved it. Act 4 was even better for the same reasons.

            As far as Witcher 2 is concerned, for me it’s by far the weakest in the series. The rhythm game might not have pleased everyone, but it was perfect for its game and it worked. Witcher 2 combat system is horrible. It’s like a failed draft of Witcher 3, the mix “action gameplay” with the horrible linearity, lack of jumping and movement freedom in general made for a disastrous mix which is why the non action-oriented first system was so much more appropriate for this kind of game.
            And to finally put it down, Dark Souls was released a couple of month later burying this sad excuse of a system once and for all.

            Sure W3’s system is still not as good but it works so much better and is far better suited to the open world nature of the game.

            And finally W2 has the weakest story of the trilogy for me (this one is even more opinionated than the rest). I like The Witcher when it tells personal stories (and even the overarching story of W1 was personal to Geralt for some spoilery reasons that hit me hard, plus most of the game was a very small-scale quest for the Witcher community). Sure The Witcher should mix conspiracies, court scheming and wars into this because of the vast social circles Geralt is rubbing shoulders with but to make of it the focus of the game? I really don’t like that. Apart from one spoilerific detail about the King’s assassin, the only reason Geralt is coerced into taking part into all this is political pressure after being framed.

        • Deano2099 says:

          Really? I remember the first ten hours being fairly decent, then you get to a city and it gets great. Then you spend ten hours running back and forth in a swamp trying not to pass out from tedium. Then it gets good again.

          I definitely agree the first game has ten hours of crap in there, but for me it was smack in the middle of the game.

    • Dorga says:

      I can understand his point, but to me the first game is still the best in the series.

    • kud13 says:

      +1. The original is possibly my most-replayed game of all time (5 or 6 complete playthroughs at this point).

      The first 10 hours (i’m presuming you don’t mean the Kaer Morhen tutorial, which takes up a good hour by itself) CAN be frustrating. Or you can soak up the atmosphere, talk to every single villager, listen to gossip, and trade old women food for fairytales (bestiary entries) and herb lore.
      Sure, if all you do is read the job board that requests 10 Bargest skulls (and you didn’t spend a talent in the prologue on “recalling” your beastiary lore), then you’ll have frustrating time. But what you have to remember is that this is a TALKING RPG. Put the voices in Polish if the stereotypical high-fantasy British acting is too much (personally, the Russian voice acting is sublime- 1C had tv-level actors voice the whole series).
      And get immersed! I tend to role-play it as a survival game-meaning I watch the clock, and when evening comes, Geralt hits the pub to spend some time with his friends. You try telling me the alchemist Kalkstein’s dialogue about the nature of alchemy isn’t priceless. Or Odo kicking you out drunk to deal with monsters haunting his vegetable patch and then berating you for “running off to slay monsters while inebriated”, as he tries to stiff you on the bill.

      Act 1 does a great job of simulating the fact that a Witcher is not a hero- a Witcher is a tradesman. The simplistic combat system drives that fact home- especially when you advance in your combos, Geralt looks like a whirlwind of death and it’s super-cool – especially with the Group style.

      TL, DR: stop treating Act 1 as a single-player MMO, and play it as an exploration/survival game (with rule youi set yourself) and it becomes fun. And the story Act 2 onwards is amazing (Autopsy! Shani’s party! Werewolf quest! Blue-eyed Girl quest! The Tower! Etc)

      • Premium User Badge

        gritz says:

        The series of denouements in Act 1 are pretty great at demonstrating that while this may look like your typical fantasy RPG, you really haven’t seen a world like this. Those villagers aren’t your friends, those monsters aren’t just random evil, and you are not a hero.

      • X_kot says:

        Now this is a great explanation why I couldn’t get past the sewers of the first city on the two times I tried to play W1. I would always slog through the drab swamp, kill stuff, fetch stuff, escort stuff…and then move to the next area to repeat. Without the actual roleplaying, it feels like a meaningless MMO with unorthodox combat that I didn’t enjoy.

    • misho8723 says:

      The worst part of TW1 were those swamps, everything else was pretty great.. and TW1 still has the best atmosphere and music from all witcher games.. TW2 has the best, most complex main story, best new characters and the best art-direction/style of all 3 games.. TW3 has the best combat system, the best side quests and the best emotional moments

      • kud13 says:

        On my recent playthrough (6th I think- it’s almost an annual thing), I actually really liked the swamp- with a major caveat- Act III swamp. With the introduction of kikimoras, it actually provided good variety and combat challenge- when you’re rushed by a Warrior, a few drowners, an echinops pops up, a leech is wobbling towards you, and a few workers are trying to surround you fighting becomes fun- as opposed to killing many, many Salamanders with group style, which is pretty much all you’ll be doing in Vizima.

        But Act II swamp is very annoying. Which is why I always play it survival-game style, making my way from one safe area to the next in sprints, avoiding too many unnecessary fights, etc.

        Act II swamp also has the second difficulty spike after the Act I boss- the trophy Archespore. Unless the player invested in Igni, that becomes an insanely tough and un-avoidable fight.

  5. shocked says:

    I liked W2 and think of Witcher3 as one of my favourite games, but the first one… I played it two times for about six hours, but I simply can’t get into it.

    • Buggery says:

      For real it took me about 6 attempts over 8 years to clear the first few hours but when it stuck, I completed the whole thing.

      It took beating the second game twice and waiting for the release of the 3rd game to convince me to do it, but there’s a quality game under a heavy layer of jank. You just got to take the time to invest in learning the systems of Witchering.

  6. tomimt says:

    Personally I don’t care for W1 and W2 that much. They both felt great games when I played them the first time, but after trying to play them again not so long ago, I gave up, as they both felt just so, I don’t know if this is the right word for them, bland.

    If I wouldn’t have tried to play them again, I still would be claiming they both are great games, but something about them just doesn’t hold up.

  7. Yachmenev says:

    The first 10 hours are not perfect, but far from dreadful.

    But you’ve come to expect John always taking the opportunity to take a dig at a game whenever possible. :)

    • Smoky_the_Bear says:

      Of course, it’s not a 90 minute walking simulator. It actually requires gameplay, so he doesn’t like it.

      • John Walker says:

        Yeah, good one!

      • Yachmenev says:

        That’s making it too easy. There are flaws there, but I quite enjoyed the start in the keep. It was something about the atmosphere and the events that clicked for me.

        Can see why John didn’t like some stuff, but I don’t fully understand his need for people to agree with him though.

        • Lukasz says:


          Keep was really fun. Got that homely feeling of comradeship between witchers.
          the other part was crappy. not bad. i don’t find it dreadful but definitely not that good.

      • Premium User Badge

        Aerothorn says:

        John actually hates Dear Esther, for the record.

  8. Ufofighter says:

    “is everyone willing to admit that the first ten hours are utterly dreadful yet?”

    I will go even further and say that the game is mediocre until you are able build a character powerful enough to make all combat irrelevant (except bosses). After that you can center in the decisions, story, characters and the game gets far better. I’m aware that’s not the popular opinion though.

    • Coming Second says:

      Pretty much agree with this. As a game, Witcher 1 is unremittingly tedious. It’s saved by a fantastic atmosphere and involved decision-making, which in turn is almost scuppered by patchy voice acting and a comically awkward attitude towards women.

  9. kael13 says:

    John. Why are you writing this in funny American money?

    • Don Reba says:

      GOG seems to be on board with the trend of leaving the numbers the same but changing the currency signs for the Euro, now. Is it the same with pounds?

  10. Premium User Badge

    gritz says:

    It’s so baffling how ambivalent RPS is towards a game that I and so many others consider the absolute apogee of the medium and the near-flawless realization of so many things we’ve always dreamed narrative-driven gaming could be. Built by a relatively unknown European shop that has a side business selling DOS games, no less.

    Cobbett calls it a masterpiece, while the rest of the staff can’t be bothered to really engage with it. In last year’s advent calendar, of the three writers you could muster to talk about it, one hadn’t even played 6 hours. I love this site, but I’ll never understand its ambivalence towards this series.

    • Premium User Badge

      gritz says:

      I mean even here, a simple news item about how these games are for sale, John can’t help but throw some snark around. Not really a single kind word for a game that has so many elements RPS professes to value.

    • Alice O'Connor says:

      I really like the whole series? TW3 has too much STUFF for my tastes but I’ve been pretty massively positive about it all along.

    • Sandepande says:

      I’ve never managed to get past the first ten or so hours of any Witcher, and the only reason is that it felt so… boring.

      It shouldn’t. I mean, everything is in there, it should be just fine, and certainly just as much fun as something like Skyrim, if not more, especially TW3. But no. I think I forced myself to play twelve hours of the latest and could not care less about the story, the characters or the worldbuilding.

      Feels weird, when there shouldn’t be anything wrong with it, quite the opposite!

    • abHowitzer says:

      I’m feel like RPS is kind of oppositional. Not necessarily going against the grain, but always trying to be a bit counter towards mainstream opinions.

  11. kud13 says:

    Only one of these I don’t already own is the Adventure Game. Is that any good?

  12. a very affectionate parrot says:

    I loved the first 10 or so hours of The Witcher.
    The village and the witch hunt set the scene for the more far reaching decisions you’ll be making later in the game.