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Have You Played… The Witcher 3?

Don't be afraid, don't be very afraid

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.

I have a mental firewall about how recent a game can be before I'm allowed to write a Have You Played? about it. In my head, The Witcher 3 is about three months old and therefore invalid.

It's two years old next month. I've had it on my hard drive for two years now, thinking "yeah, I'll finally finish that next weekend."

Despite not having seen it through to its conclusion, let alone its DLC, I'm reasonably confident that I can assign CD Proket's third Geralt 'em up modern classic status. It's a comfortable blend of of random sandbox monster-bashing, a grand-scale overarching story and some surprisingly thoughtful side quests, but more importantly it sets all that within a place that is both beautiful and palpably lived in.

Sure, there's a few wince-worthy moments in terms of some characterisation and routine 'investigation'-based questing, but this is a game of unusual focus and confidence, given its sprawl. There's a reason that people have been saying that Bioware should be looking to what The Witcher 3 did, given the somewhat hollow MMO-like structure of its recent Dragon Age and Mass Effect sequels.

Modern classic. Hasn't aged a day either, even though it's somehow two bloody years old.

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