#1 Posted by Cincaid (2958 posts) -

The Witcher 2 have been sitting in my Steam library for more than a year now. Three times I've said "damnit, time to really start playing this game", only to close it down straight after the tutorial. I love (love!) RPGs, but I simply can't understand this game's mechanics and gameplay. So please, I really want to enjoy this game, help me understand some stuff!

  • Should I be using KB+M or a 360 gamepad? Are there any advantages to either of them?
  • Any must-have mods out there? I've been hearing something about a combat mod?
  • Anything else that's helpful that I should know? Talents, preferred specs, etc?


#2 Edited by Ghostiet (5289 posts) -

1. Whatever is fine.

2. The Enhanced Edition added a bunch of stuff that was in mods, like equipment segregation, so you should be fine. There is a full combat rebalance mod available made by a CDP employee that scales down every difficulty level, but it also changes a bunch of stuff in the way the combat works.

3. You should invest in signs - especially Quen - and bombs. While they've been nerfed compared to the original release, they are still really useful and will help you during the beginning of the game, when you still struggle with combat.

It would be easier if you said what exactly you don't get about the way this game works.

#3 Posted by ll_Exile_ll (1820 posts) -

1. I used a 360 controller and didn't feel hampered in any way. The game plays like a third person action game, so the gamepad works fine.

2. The only mod I used was one that changed the dice models to the ones from The Witcher 1. They still totally fucked up dice in The Witcher 2 compared to the original, but the mod makes it more playable. Other than that, I loved the game without any mods, but it wouldn't hurt to browse the The Witcher Nexus to see if anything jumps out at you.

3. The game is not easy, especially early in the game. It may play like a typical third person action game, bu this is an RPG at its heart, so preparation and strategy are essential for every combat encounter. You can't just button mash your way through combat, you need to make use of your skills, spec your character in a way that fits your preferred playstyle, and most importantly focus on staying alive rather than mowing down enemies. Combat may move slow, but at least you'll be alive.

#4 Edited by MannyMAR (494 posts) -

I played with a 360 controller. The combat felt similar to DMC or MGR: ReVengeance character action games and I typically prefer controllers for those style of games. I will say though that playing with KB+M allows for better item management if I recall correctly.

I haven't tried any of the mods, I felt with all the additions they made through updates was good enough.

Like Ghostiet said investing in signs is good if you feel like the combat is too clunky, but like I love character action games and invested everything in Swordsmanship. Alchemy is amazing on your 2nd or 3rd play-through just because you'll have a greater knowledge of when and what to use for specific encounters.

#5 Edited by SirOptimusPrime (2026 posts) -
  1. Whatever you're more comfortable with, it doesn't really matter.
  2. The only mod I recommend is the no-weight mod. It's just a nice way to alleviate the only real annoyance I found in the game.
  3. I dunno, I always found the swordplay fun so I invest in the swordsmanship tree. That one's up to you, based on the parts of the game that you end up liking or go magic if you want the game to be ridiculously easy.
#6 Posted by Gruff182 (867 posts) -

Quen is your friend.

#7 Edited by Fredchuckdave (5793 posts) -

Yrden is actually the best sign to use, Quen is just a crutch and won't necessarily help you apart from keeping you alive for slightly longer.

#8 Edited by noizy (683 posts) -
  1. I played with a gamepad and preferred it. Normally I play most games with M+KB. Try both. Personally, I find gamepads work fine on 3rd person games that don't require precision aiming/shooting. This is one of them.
  2. I'd recommend vanilla first. I tried the Full Combat Rebalance mod and didn't really like it. I didn't like the active Quen that replaces blocking. Maybe as a second play through it's worth it. The game doesn't need mod in my view. I'd recommend against going down that path now.
  3. The start of the game is rough as you don't have all the moves unlocked (if I recall correctly), and the tutorial is so-so. If some section piss you off, just lower the difficulty. The early part of the game are tough as you have low stats. If there's some stupid achievement tied to difficulty, just ignore that shit and put it on easy to get through a given section, you can bump it back up later. Plow through until you reach the village, it gets better mechanically around there I found. I speced in swordmanship and the game became rather easy. I didn't find alchemy or magic to be of core use in my game play.

First time I installed the game I did not like it. After getting over the hump and played it in full, I'd say it's a fantastic game. The plot is really engaging and Triss is charming.

#9 Posted by YI_Orange (1163 posts) -

1. Whatever you're comfortable with

2. Nah.

3. Get parrying and behind the block blocking as soon as possible. Quen is really good. @fredchuckdave says it's a crutch, but if that's the case it's a hell of a crutch. I would turn it on and walk into the middle of enemies, Quen would not only protect me, but stun and kill enemies as well. It also really helped with the final bosses.

Bonus! Don't play the dice, it's super shitty.

#10 Posted by Aetheldod (3642 posts) -

Use that dodge botton a lot , doesnt matter if you only hit once then dodge , its is better than end up dead.

About the skills go with whatever you like most , it is an rpg , I went through the swordsmanship and alchelmy paths (screw signs)

#11 Posted by ThatFrood (3376 posts) -

@yi_orange said:

Bonus! Don't play the dice, it's super shitty.

Have they fixed the arm wrestling? Because I remember that being completely impossible after a certain point due to lag.

#12 Edited by YI_Orange (1163 posts) -

@thatfrood said:

@yi_orange said:

Bonus! Don't play the dice, it's super shitty.

Have they fixed the arm wrestling? Because I remember that being completely impossible after a certain point due to lag.

I don't remember it being that difficult in The Witcher 1, but I found it to be incredibly easy in The Witcher 2(using a mouse, never tried with gamepad). So I'm going to say yes, but thinking about I feel like there was some lag, but it was easy enough to compensate for.

#13 Posted by xyzygy (10043 posts) -

360 controller is great, not sure about mods though as I played on 360.

But the game is amazing and you just gotta play it to kind of figure it out. You don't need Alchemy unless you're playing in the higher difficulty levels. Signs are really, really good but I found myself going into swordsmanship a lot.

#14 Posted by shinboy630 (1164 posts) -

1. I used a gamepad. The inventory is kind of a mess with it, but the game itself controls well enough.

2. I 100% recommend the Full Combat Rebalance. It just makes the game feel better. There are a couple of other small mods that I used (hiding the UI when not in combat, etc), but the FCR2 is the only one I would really say you should use. Even aside from the active gameplay changes, the fact that it gets rid of the BS training skill tree alone makes it worth it.

3. I would at least get a couple of points in whatever it is that lets you take more potions and stuff. May not be as useful as the more combat oriented skills, but nice nonetheless.

#15 Edited by Undeadpool (4963 posts) -

It actually helps to have read one or two of the books. Besides being amazingly well-written, this game is actually incredibly faithful to them in that most of Geralt's items are used in preparation rather than in the heat of combat. Healing potions don't immediately restore health, they just help you recover faster, applying buffs to your weapon takes time, etc., so you're going to want to prepare before heading into a situation that could turn dangerous (this is also why most non-magic buffs last a LONG time). That's the best advice I can give and it won't REALLY help you get out of the tutorial. The other piece would be that, unlike most RPGs, the Witcher is best played utilizing all of your tools. You can prefer one tree to the others (I certainly did), but you absolutely shouldn't focus on just one, or even two, paths.