The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt


Finally got around to playing this over the weekend (and, yeah, I pre-ordered it!). It’s got it’s hooks in me pretty bad. Got through the first region and now in the 2nd. Love the visuals, atmosphere, characters and story. Don’t quite feel like I have a handle on combat yet, but hopefully I will get there.

And hoo-boy there are a lot of systems here. The skills, crafting, alchemy, etc. etc. All have me pretty overhelmed, and I feel like I will surely nerf my character unless I spend a bunch of time reading guides (which I’d rather not do). Are there any re-spec opportunities down the road? I’m already sorta regretting a couple of my skill point expenditures.


Yeah, you can buy the potions of respec and they’re fairly cheap. You can also obtain all witcher sets (and later upgrade them) so you can basically respec and try different builds at will, as long as you sell stuff to merchants at least every once in a while.

As for nerfing your character - the talent tree is painfully simple and it takes ages before you get to any interesting talents, even if you focus on one school. By the time you get to the part where you’d actually see any impact from your talent choices you’ll probably know what you want to play as.


I re-specced many times. As someone who’s bored by stat padding talents (i.e. increase critical hit chance by 5%), I respecced fairly often to take advantage of whichever tree gave me access to new active abilities. Each tree puts their big active talents at different tiers

  • Magic- tier 2- secondary casts
  • Combat- tier 3- secondary attacks
  • Alchemy tier 4- cluster bombs

Alchemy and crafting will never amount to much if you don’t loot fairly extensively. There are a lot of important materials that cannot to my knowledge by purchased at reasonable prices. It’s a fairly easy game even on the highest difficulty, so making the most of the ability trees is more about having fun than completing the game. I would definitely recommend avoiding guides.

The Witcher 3 is one of my all time favorite games, but the combat is just serviceable and the ability tree is utterly uninspired. The systems added by the expansions (e.g. Set bonuses and mutations) made up a little for the latter point.


You don’t need to loot all that much for alchemy, mat requirements are ‘steep’ only for the first craft, after that you can refresh all consumables with one dose of alcohol. You do however have to track down some of those rare components, most of which come from bounties and such. I think some can even be missed if you take certain paths in quests and spare your targets. I’m not sure how I circumvented that, it was either with a mod or CDP added a merchant that sold those mutagens, I honestly don’t remember.


Got a bit more play time in yesterday. Still loving it, but it’s driving the completionist in me crazy. There are so many question marks on the map in Velen (dozens of them!), and I’ve still got a bunch of secondary quests and monster hunts in my queue. But, I’m through the Baron/family stuff and the story is urging me to move on to Novigrad. I’m like level 10 and my sense is that trying to “clear the map” in Velen is going to have me out-leveling the main story and other regions.

But, if I leave and come back I imagine I will have out-leveled most of the stuff here?

Is the idea that I’m not supposed to be chasing all of the question marks and sub-quests? In Skyrim, I’d just sorta’ happen across stuff. In Witcher, they are there on my map and I’ve got to go see what they are about, damnit.

Someone needs to make a truly open world RPG without a main quest story, where you can just wander about and do what strikes your fancy. A hex crawl, in tabletop RPG terms. Instead, it’s like “hold on, I’ll save the world next week. Right now, I’ve got to help this farmer find his errant pig.”

Anyway, any advice on how to proceed along the main storyline while managing sub-quests and exploring?

Secondly, can anyone give me some not-too-spoilery direction on witcher gear? I’m still wearing my starting tunic because all of the poofy bits of armor I’ve found look like hell (I don’t care if they better – I don’t want to wear the poofy shirt!). I’ve been finding these bits of witcher gear maps, but I think they are too be found in other regions. Should I be wearing some of that stuff by now? I assume it’s better/cooler than the random loot or other crafted bits?


Turn off the question marks, seriously. There are about 200 people in this very thread making that comment. Just discover stuff organically. If you don’t like it after a while, you can turn them back on.


As others have suggested turning off the question marks is a good option.

One thing that you might think is helpful as a completionist when considering turning off the marks: The question marks that have some kind of story attached to them will be part of a quest you will get from talking to people, so you will be directed there through the quest. For example: Scavenger hunts will end at a question mark but you will get a quest objective marker for lets say, the Griffen pantaloons. You will not miss them if you just follow the quest and have the markers turned off.

The majority of question marks should be thought of as loot chests. You can get crap gear to sell/dismantle and materials. That is about it. Which ties into your question about gear. Craft witcher gear if you have the patterns. Witches gear is a nice investment because it can be upgraded. The master piece requires the sub-master piece as a component. Crafting the gear costs money and mats so if you are low on either turn the marks back on, clear a few bandit camps, collect loot to sell, turn off marks, and craft you gear.

Hope this helps.


This. The game is so much better not just following icons.


Question, The Witcher has been on my bucket list for a while, I played about an hour and a half of the first one but I got the impression that they are “investment” gamesu, which my schedule really can’t suffer over the course of 3 installments. How important would you say it is to play all 3 of the games to really “get” the 3rd one and enjoy it to the fullest? Does it help but isn’t necessary or does it greatly fog up the experience?


The third one explains to you everything you need to know about the universe. I’m sure they were references to previous games in there that I didn’t get, since the game is very rich in lore and there’s a lot of references to things that happened in the past, but I never lost while playing it.


They really should have made that the default. And you should have had to turn on the icons on purpose if you wanted to play that way. It was quite shocking how much better the experience was once I turned off the icons. It really changes the nature of the open-world.


It isn’t necessary. The previous games (and the books even more so) do add a lot of depth to Witcher 3, and that really improves the experience overall, but it isn’t necessary to enjoy the game.




And also, while the first part of the Witcher 2 makes a lot of sense and is compelling, the second half of Witcher 2 is kind of a narrative-salad of Stuff Happens for Reasons that isn’t especially coherent even when you know all the details. So it doesn’t really hurt all that much going straight into Witcher 3.


This is perfect. Just…so good. I am happy to know Warhorse have their preferences straight when it comes to Witcher lore :D


Triss wanted a stuffed horse as well, i see. ^^


Ok, I know Binky is Death’s horse from Discworld, but I was curious about the rest and I headed over to google to find out…

In case anyone else wants to know:

Podagros is a mare of Diomedes from greek mythology
Uchchai is a 7 headed flying hindu horse (!)
Jenda is probably a reference to a current real horse called Just Jenda


Yeah, and I wish games would be designed for not having a map littered with icons and they can design other ways to get info to the player.


Sweet! I appreciate all the feedback, sometimes I do think playing the entire collection of games is important but lately I’ve changed the way I approach games and now I don’t just play things for the sake of playing them. A perfect example was my experience with Half Life, I didn’t play them for the first time until about 2 years ago, it was dated and I didn’t really enjoy the experience, probably amazing for its time but considering I’d play fantastic sci fi shooters like BioShock it didn’t have the same appeal to me… However that’s the kind of game that would have been pretty necessary to play to understand part 3 (of course part 3 will never be made so RIP me and sorry for my rant ha)


My experience was this - I played all three Witcher games. I had a hard time getting through the first 2 because I didn’t read the books so didn’t really ‘get’ the universe. Even had to give W3 a second go before it finally clicked. After that, I was able to go back and play W1 & 2, and enjoy them a lot more because I understood a bit more of the universe just based on W3.