In an alternate universe, people are scared to death that The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is going to collapse under the weight of its own ambition and snap the neck of its brilliant potential in the process. And to be honest, I'm still feeling the tiniest bit of that in this universe. Going from Witcher 2's traditional (though ambitious) trawl to an open-world 50 times its size is no small step, after all. But with each passing day - each live demo, each frighteningly well-cut trailer - I can't help but feel optimistic. Maybe the PR hype brainwashing machine has finally made a fool of me, but I have really high hopes here. See why below.
Did you spot Game of Thrones' Tywin Lannister? I spotted Game of Thrones' Tywin Lannister. This is not terribly far removed from stuff we've already seen, of course. It just seems to be coming together really, really well now that it's reaching the final stages of development. Or maybe it's not, and this trailer just hides all the gushing seams with a thief's precision.
The Witcher 3 will be out on February 24th. Though it suffered a recent delay, CD Projekt plans to use all of that time to apply its special brand of Polish polish. Hopefully the initial release will be more like Witcher 1 or 2's extended edition - that is, fully fleshed out and functional instead of a bit janky.
I guess if you pre-order on GOG, you get a free copy of the digital version of the Witcher boardgame, Witcher Adventure Game. If you say "Witcher Adventure Game" five times fast it becomes "Itcher Venterame."
There's also a big physical collector's edition for those who enjoy that kind of thing. It comes with a statue, a medallion, and - the truest conduit of imagination - a box. You can do anything with the box. Anything.
So then, who's feeling bewitched by this trailer? Who still has doubts?