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Thronebreaker Has Become a Beast

Livestream of the Gwent based Witcher rpg reveals it's much more epic than we might have first thought.

by Rhys ap Gwyn

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A few days ago the Gwent channel hosted a YouTube stream of CD Projekt Red’s Thronebreaker, an isometric rpg based around Gwent, the card game from the Witcher video game series. The host sat down with two members of the development team, Jakub Szamalek and Mateusz Tomaszkiewicz, to show off what the team has been cooking up.

Impressively, the duo says that while the title began as a much shorter one, the campaign will now run for 30+ hours, which is suitably hefty and befitting the Witcher name. There are over a hundred specifically tailored card battles that play out across the epic tale with an incredible 20 different end-world scenarios depending on the choices you make, which they assure us are not simply black and white, but as grey as Geralt’s handsome beard.

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If you haven’t seen anything about the game you’ll immediately notice the shift from full 3D to an isometric viewpoint but the devs are quick to point out that the game will share the same mature themes as its open world brethren. Speaking of which, at the very start we see the map, which zooms out to show more. It’s pretty huge, and already (they start about an hour into the game) peppered with icons showing side quests, main quests and other little goodies. They then tell us that that map is one of five found in the campaign, bound to please those looking for another meaty adventure. The developers are also including a Story mode for those not that interested in Gwent but want to experience the narrative and decision making.

The quality of the visuals, sound and dialogue are right up there with the Witcher series proper. Gwent plays out mostly the way it already does, but Thronebreaker throws in the leader characters models on the board, shouting in support and fury while the animated boards that reflect the location of the battle shine with little details and polish. To add to the epicness, between battles and exploration, War Camp will allow you to recruit and train units and work on your battle tactics.

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“The world stands on the verge of chaos, as the tensions between the power-hungry Nilfgaardian Empire and proud Northern Realms grow. Facing an imminent invasion, Meve — war-veteran Queen of Lyria and Rivia — is forced to once again enter the warpath, and set out on a dark journey of destruction and revenge.”

It’s shaping up to be an interesting and fresh re-entry into the Witcher world which in itself is quite exciting for fans who wanted more after the Wild Hunt. You can sign up on their site to get more updates while we wait for the game to release sometime next year for PC (exclusively on GOG), PS4 and Xbox One. And if the game is successful, there are reports it could turn into a series.

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