in Gaming

My First Taste of the Wild with Witcher 3’s Flora and Fauna

So I finally got the Witcher 3: Wild Hunt installed and after playing for 2 hours, I was surprised by how the gameplay works and the RPG elements being rolled-up and integrated on the game. First of all, I am not a Witcher fan and I haven’t played the previous game in the series. Second, I was enticed of the hype by many gaming magazines stating it was one of those much awaited games to ever hit on both consoles and PC. Sadly, a few minutes playing, I was surprised that it was just another Watch Dog graphical failure.

Here’s an honest screenshot  on what I think about the game in those early minutes.

witcher_screen

We’ll not to be biased and all. I tried maxing out my setting and all I get is some crappy frame rate on crowded areas with some graphical hitches along the way. I was a little bit disturbed by the foliage it has presented. The grass looks like a 2D pop-up that you can find in children’s books and I for one thought I would be getting realistic grass like those found in GTA V or Far Cry 4. But instead, it is poorly degraded and I even compared my screens to Youtube Videos and official press releases. Sadly, it didn’t met my expectation and it wasn’t even close to the real thing way back at E3.

What quickly popped into my head was with Watch Dogs. The game is synonymous for its poorly optimized graphics and crappy frame rates.  But it was just too early to tell without me having to tweak around the graphics department.  And yes, without the use of Nvidia’s Experience software.

witcher3_gameplay

Other than that, the Witcher 3 is outstanding in terms of scenery. Surprisingly, I manage to get around these sort of hindrances thanks to Nvidia’s 352.86 update which greatly enhances the Witcher 3. Additionally, some settings needed to be turned-off and I believe that Nvidia’s Hair Works was likely the culprit. I tried disabling it, and to my surprise I managed to get a massive 10-15 FPS on Ultra High settings giving me a stable 60 FPS with some minor hiccups in populated towns and scenery.  And most importantly the update 1.03 update that was just released.  It did however solved some major flaws. (By the time of this writing patch 1.04 has just been released).

AMD has already accused Nvidia’s Hair Works technology to be the sole culprit with regards to AMD Cards poor performance. However, the developers from CD Projekt RED felt the opposite but instead, praised Nvidia’s technology to be the reason why they were able to make realistic objects like animals come to life.

The other thing that I surprisingly find it odd, is switching graphics from low to ultra. I mean, if my eyes are deceiving me, the difference between the two is none. Yes, you heard it right none. I find it no difference when it comes to textures and shadows. Pardon me if I called it as a graphical catastrophe, but my words describing the game is already contradicting by now, that it requires more than your first impression in judging the game’s graphics.  It is “deceiving”. Playing it for 2 hours is not enough.

witcher3_gameplay3

So far, the Witcher 3 did broke my heart in some point, most especially when it comes to the graphical mishap that the internet is babbling about. However, I love the way fighting mechanic is done. It is fast paced and action packed with some cool hack and slash elements combined with some magical entities that you can do with Geralt making the game fun and exciting.

Playing roughly 2 – 3 hours in game and giving my verdict is too early to tell. Considering it is a huge game. And I mean HUGE! This is not a complete review, but just my first impressions with regards to the game’s graphics. But I have this feeling that it would be one of those RPG games that will surely be comparable to Skyrim in terms of graphics and gameplay. I’ll keep you posted.