Rumour: The Witcher’s Gwent Becomes Own Game

You’ll never guess what Ian Video Games heard down at the trademark and patent office! Oh, yes, of course someone said “This is the daftest idea I’ve ever heard”, you’re right there. His patent does make a certain sort of sense if you think about it, though. Inevitably some Frankenstein will make a perpetual motion machine by strapping buttered toast to a cat and hurling it off a roof – but how will they safely attach the toast to the cat? Cushioned heat-resistant toast straps. Always thinking ahead, that Ian.

Anyway, no, the other thing he heard: someone filing a trademark for a standalone version of Gwent, the card game from The Witcher 3.

This here is a trademark filing for Gwent: The Witcher Card Game, supposedly filed by CD Projekt RED two days ago to cover video games. And board games. And jewelry. Sunglasses. Figurines. Medallions, footwear, underwear, leather belts… look, they make these very broad to cover all conceivable scenarios. But the key categories are video games and online games, and those seem the most likely.

It sounds interesting. I really enjoyed Gwent as a diversion within The Witcher 3 but on its own merits it seems a bit limited. I’d imagine a standalone version would bung in a heap more cards to open up more strategies, mind. And would have proper human opponents. We’ll see! I’m more into the idea than The Elder Scrolls: Legends, at least.

Various fans made a Gwent mod for Tabletop Simulator and even a full standalone multiplayer game, though CD Projekt did force them to take that down. Projekt did also make limited edition actual physical Gwent decks for the Hearts of Stone expansion.

This trademark filing isn’t an announcement or confirmation, of course, but maybe we’ll hear one at E3. Or maybe not! He’s told a tall tale or two in his time, that Ian.

Ta for pointing this out, NerdLeaks.

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22 Comments

  1. Premium User Badge

    modzero says:

    This is the work of the Inevitability Department, with some cooperation of the Kept You Waiting Huh brigade.

  2. Horg says:

    Good. I’ve got a hankering to play some Gwent.

  3. Vandelay says:

    Really no surprise. Gwent seems to have really kicked off for many Witcher players.

    Personally, I agree with Alice. There will need to be a bunch more cards and/or mechanics to really make this an interesting standalone product. I certainly enjoy a bit of Gwent mixed in with my dozens of hours of RPGing and it makes the collect-a-thon of open world games much more interesting than gathering random feathers, but the game itself doesn’t even compare to the depth of even simple card games like Hearthstone.

    Still, I like card games, so more out there is definitely not a bad thing.

  4. Imbecile says:

    Aye – I enjoyed Gwent in Witcher 3. Most card games where the cards themselves dont have a cost are kinda flawed. When you can play a card with a strength of 1 and it costs the same as a card with a strength of 7, plus a special ability, you know its going to take a few tweaks to make it work.

    • LTK says:

      There are plenty of ways to counter the powerful cards, like Scorch and the various cards whose ability is to destroy cards above a certain power. What really needs tweaking are the hero cards, which are immune to literally every effect. By the end of the game you’ll have collected all the hero cards and no one will beat you except those who have a similar number of hero cards. It becomes less a game of play and counterplay and more of putting your heroes out at exactly the right time, which still keeps the game interesting but rather boring against players with subpar decks.

      • Imbecile says:

        Oh sure, but triss is unequivocally worse than yennefer, and clan dimun pirate is better than vesemir. Ultimately its more about who owns the best cards really

      • Rumpelstiltskin says:

        Spies are arguably better than heroes, since they give you 2 cards and an extra turn (which is incredibly important). Also, while heroes can’t be weakened by weather cards, they also can’t be rallied or bonded.

  5. Kefren says:

    I played Gwent a few times but quickly got bored with it. Which is fine, because it is just an additional option. Still, it resembled my feelings to Witcher 3 as a whole – a mixture of pleasure and irritation. The former just about won out enough to see me to an ending.

    (Though I am playing Fallout New Vegas right now, and have yet to play a game of “Caravan”; I keep getting told I don’t have enough cards, but there doesn’t seem to be a way of viewing your cards…)

  6. SaintAn says:

    Hope they don’t ruin it by making it F2P or having microtransactions.

    • Premium User Badge

      Minsc_N_Boo says:

      As it’s CDPR, I am sure we will be fine. They have a track record of being awesome to fans.

      That said F2P doesn’t necessarily mean it will be bad or a rip off. Some F2P games, such as Path of Exile, are totally free from Pay to win and “walled content” shenanigans.

  7. LTK says:

    I was very impressed by Gwent, how it requires very thoughtful and tactical play, always having you think ahead, and emphasises that you must often lose a battle to win the war.

    You’re always trying to find the balance between setting up combos to boost your power and neuter your opponent’s, and baiting them to overextend so you can punish them the next round.

    The most tense moments are when your opponent passes the round with an overwhelming force on their side, knowing you have to win this round, and so you pull out all the stops and barely top their score. Then you pray that their two-card hand isn’t holding a unit that beats the one unit left in your two-card hand.

    Or you have one of those cheeky buggers that plays a measly few units with almost no power, so once you have enough units on the field to win without overextending you pass the turn. Then they dump a load of spies on you to double their hand size and then use that to neuter your entire advantage and win the round, leaving you in a worse position than you were ever expecting.

    Despite its simplicity it’s a very good game, and it’s only the hero cards that really unbalance it. If they release this as a standalone game I’d definitely play it.

  8. Premium User Badge

    DelrueOfDetroit says:

    Isn’t there already a stand-alone version seeing as how Gwent was a near carbon copy of another card game I can’t remember the name of?

    • tormos says:

      Condioterre, I believe (from watching Shut up and Sit Down)

      • thekelvingreen says:

        That’s the one. It’s a bit more complex than Gwent, since it has a board and some moving pieces, but it’s more or less the same, and isn’t named after a part of south Wales.

    • Premium User Badge

      Ninja Dodo says:

      People keep saying that, but I had a look at a PDF of the Condotierre rulebook and while there are certainly similarities and some shared specific mechanics (and it’s entirely possible Gwent was partly inspired by it) it’s not the same game at all… starting with having a board and control of territory. This insistence that it’s *exactly the same* ends up reading more like Condotierre players upset that their game is less popular than this new Witcher-themed game, which you know, fair enough… but personally I’d go with “if you like this, you might also like …”.

  9. Hyena Grin says:

    Gwent was alright – definitely better than your standard minigame. They clearly spent some time thinking about the rules and making it relatively interesting. But once you had a deck of good cards you were sort of unstoppable, because the rules don’t really have a lot of good ways to deal with that. There’s a lot less luck than there is raw card strength, and a limited set of strategies that you can’t really change based on your opponent’s deck (unless you play a rematch after seeing their deck in action).

    But it lacks the depth of most deck-building games. I am hoping that if they decide to do a stand-alone version a-la Hearthstone, they will elaborate on the rules a little, introduce some new mechanics to flesh it out and make it more involved.

  10. The Petulant Platypus says:

    I really enjoyed the diversion of Geralt’s adventures in Gwent 3: The Wild Punt, and I look forward to Gwent being available separately!

    I got lucky and have physical cards for the Northern Realms, Nilfgaard, Scioa’tael and the Monsters via store purchased copies of Hearts of Stone and Blood and Wine – so I get to enjoy those anytime I like. All I need is to construct my own Gwent board. To be fair though it is much easier to just play it on the computer.

  11. artrexdenthur says:

    Already been posted about above, but bears repeating: Gwent is a touched-up Witcher-themed version of Condottiere. No problem with them making their own fantasy and physical version, BUT you can already get a very, very similar game if it’s the gameplay you’re after.

    • artrexdenthur says:

      Though on further inspection it does seem to currently have a case of out-of-stock price inflation. May be worth waiting for Gwent after all.

  12. Premium User Badge

    Ninja Dodo says:

    Sweet. Was surprised by how much I enjoyed this in Witcher 3. It seems initially to be just about chance and having the best cards, but you can get some really interesting tactics going once you get the hang of it (and have a few good special and hero cards, and spies). Having too many hero cards definitely makes it too easy to win, but with the physical cards I’ve found adding the custom rule of max 5 heroes per deck mitigates this somewhat since it makes the specials more powerful and the game more unpredictable.