Old school PC RPG nerd says: The Witcher 2 is overrated

Witcher 2 is by no means a bad game, but at this point - after having played through Chapter 1 and substantial parts of Chapter 2 - I'm this close to declaring it one of the most overrated RPG to have been released in quite some time. TW2 has been almost universally acclaimed as the triumphant return of an entire genre from the only developer in the whole wide world which supposedly still cares about cutting edge PC development, but in my opinion there are just too many blatant flaws in CD Projekt RED's ambitious dark fantasy adventure to make this anything more than yet another cool, quirky Eastern European-developed title, which is most certainly worth getting for fans of the genre but can't seriously be considered to be successful enough to reach the status of a modern classic.

That in and of itself should be seen as a fairly respectable recommendation, but there's no denying that any list of TW2's shortcomings can get awfully long. It would, at the very least, have to include things like an unbalanced skill system (resulting in extremely uneven difficulty), stupid boss fights with one-hit kills and QTEs*, sluggish combat controls, confusing maze-like level design with lots of bland corridors, a needlessly cluttered interface, plenty of boring fetch assignments, imprecise quest markers and logs, a poorly introduced game world as well as longwinded dialogue which never manages to imbue the game's wooden characters with enough life to make the player fully invested in The Witcher's byzantine storyline with all its unpronounceable factions, vaguely defined nation states and morally reprehensible kings and queens.

Despite its undeniably good looks, Witcher 2 feels like an anachronistic and somewhat misguided release which neither has the tactical nature of classic roleplaying games nor tries hard enough to learn from more accessible (if arguably also a lot less ambitious) RPGs released in recent years. I still enjoy playing this game for what it does right in terms graphics, atmosphere, player choice etc., but so far that other deeply flawed RPG, Dragon Age 2, remains my own favorite mainstream entry in this genre in 2011.

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Posted by Egge

Witcher 2 is by no means a bad game, but at this point - after having played through Chapter 1 and substantial parts of Chapter 2 - I'm this close to declaring it one of the most overrated RPG to have been released in quite some time. TW2 has been almost universally acclaimed as the triumphant return of an entire genre from the only developer in the whole wide world which supposedly still cares about cutting edge PC development, but in my opinion there are just too many blatant flaws in CD Projekt RED's ambitious dark fantasy adventure to make this anything more than yet another cool, quirky Eastern European-developed title, which is most certainly worth getting for fans of the genre but can't seriously be considered to be successful enough to reach the status of a modern classic.

That in and of itself should be seen as a fairly respectable recommendation, but there's no denying that any list of TW2's shortcomings can get awfully long. It would, at the very least, have to include things like an unbalanced skill system (resulting in extremely uneven difficulty), stupid boss fights with one-hit kills and QTEs*, sluggish combat controls, confusing maze-like level design with lots of bland corridors, a needlessly cluttered interface, plenty of boring fetch assignments, imprecise quest markers and logs, a poorly introduced game world as well as longwinded dialogue which never manages to imbue the game's wooden characters with enough life to make the player fully invested in The Witcher's byzantine storyline with all its unpronounceable factions, vaguely defined nation states and morally reprehensible kings and queens.

Despite its undeniably good looks, Witcher 2 feels like an anachronistic and somewhat misguided release which neither has the tactical nature of classic roleplaying games nor tries hard enough to learn from more accessible (if arguably also a lot less ambitious) RPGs released in recent years. I still enjoy playing this game for what it does right in terms graphics, atmosphere, player choice etc., but so far that other deeply flawed RPG, Dragon Age 2, remains my own favorite mainstream entry in this genre in 2011.

Posted by Animasta

@Egge said:

confusing maze-like level design with lots of bland corridors, plenty of boring fetch assignments,

but so far that other deeply flawed RPG, Dragon Age 2, remains my favorite mainstream entry in this genre in 2011.

wait a minute...

Posted by Cloudenvy

@Laketown said:

@Egge said:

confusing maze-like level design with lots of bland corridors, plenty of boring fetch assignments,

but so far that other deeply flawed RPG, Dragon Age 2, remains my favorite mainstream entry in this genre in 2011.

wait a minute...

*waits*

Edited by Egge

@Laketown: Although your comment leaves any possible argumentation entirely implicit, I would assume that you sense a contradiction at work here. I would disagree with that assessment, since at least for me it was far easier to stomach DA2's fetch quest stupidity than TW2's. Primarily, the reason for this is the general clarity of DA2's mission objectives (go there, pick up X, give to Y etc.) and the fact that - as repetitive as the environments in DA2 undeniably were - at least they were almost without exception more detailed, distinct and well-designed than TW2's generic corridor crawls.

Posted by benjaebe
@Egge said:

at least they were almost without exception more detailed, distinct and well-designed than TW2's generic corridor crawls.

We were playing the same Dragon Age 2, right? Did they release a GOTY edition when I wasn't looking that contained these detailed, distinct and well-designed areas? Because I certainly didn't see any when I played, and I actually liked the game.
Edited by AlexW00d

@Egge: Corridor crawls? Did you play past the intro level?

Posted by PeasForFees

As much as I liked Origins, the combat is fucking boring and I never felt that I had control over how it goes. Personally I feel the opposite to you but your entitled to your opinion. I however don't see how the Witcher 2 has bad level design, I honestally can't remember any  generic corridor crawls in the Witcher, especially in the detail department, If you can enlighten me great, otherwise it just seems that you are making up shit.

Posted by Thule

@Egge said:

@Laketown: Although your comment leaves any possible argumentation entirely implicit, I would assume that you sense a contradiction at work here. I would disagree with that assessment, since at least for me it was far easier to stomach DA2's fetch quest stupidity than TW2's. Primarily, the reason for this is the general clarity of DA2's mission objectives (go there, pick up X, give to Y etc.) and the fact that - as repetitive as the environments in DA2 undeniably were - at least they were almost without exception more detailed, distinct and well-designed than TW2's generic corridor crawls.

Haha, now I know you're trolling. Nice try though.

Posted by TheKramer89
@Egge said:

Although your comment leaves any possible argumentation entirely implicit, I would assume that you sense a contradiction at work here.

dude, shut up. this is a videogame forum.
Posted by jorbear

I was enthralled by the story, but that's probably because I enjoyed the hell out of the original game. Did you play The Witcher? If not, then doing so will cure your story woes.

Posted by The_Dude

That's just like, your opinion man...and I couldn't disagree more.

Posted by Management

@Egge said:

unbalanced skill system (resulting in extremely uneven difficulty),

I have only played the game through one time, so I can't say for certain, but I had no problems with my combat and alchemy build, with a dash of magic in there. Quen is kinda unbalanced though.

@Egge said:

stupid boss fights with one-hit kills and QTEs,

I thought the boss fights were good, and no one could one-hit kill you, if so, you should have gotten some better armor, and maybe leveled up more? The QTE's was unnecessary yes, but they only kicked in when the boss was nearly dead, and it was there just to give the player a grand finale at the end of the fight.

@Egge said:

sluggish combat controls

Did we play two different games? the controls were completely accurate and it was a breeze rolling around on the battlefield.

@Egge said:

confusing maze-like level design with lots of bland corridors

I did not get lost once during the entire game, and there are only on a few occasions that the game takes you into corridors. The game is mostly completely open.@Egge said:

a needlessly cluttered interface

The interface could have been better, I'll give you that. But it was never a problem for me. maybe a minor minus to the game overall. Also, if you played The Witcher 1 first, you would have known how big of an improvement the new interface is.

@Egge said:

plenty of boring fetch assignments

There is not a single RPG ever that does not feature a fetch quest. And there were very few of them in the game I felt.

@Egge said:

imprecise quest markers and logs

When a quest had a marker it was accurate, and when there was no quest marker, and the log was not good enough, you were either supposed to talk to someone and get more info, or wander around trying to find it. If you payed attention the game actually explained this during the first chapter.

@Egge said:

a poorly introduced game world as well as longwinded dialogue which never manages to imbue the game's wooden characters with enough life to make the player fully invested in The Witcher's byzantine storyline with all its unpronounceable factions, vaguely defined nation states and morally reprehensible kings and queens.

In case you did not know, this is the second game in The Witcher franchise. Maybe you noticed the big fat "2" on the box and title screen? Long dialogue is a good thing in my book. The characters in The Witcher universe are full of life. The fact that both factions are in the gray area is what makes The Witcher, The Witcher. The game is all about though decisions and a story in a shady gray area. The path of a Witcher is to be politically neutral. But you are forced to take sides. The kings and queens are once again, supposed to be reprehensible, they all want power.

The nations and the world is vague in the game and I can see that this is a problem for those who have not read the book. They should have taken time explaining the world a bit more.

@Egge said:

but so far that other deeply flawed RPG, Dragon Age 2, remains my favorite mainstream entry in this genre in 2011.

I have taken you seriously up to this point, but this is just, WHAT?!

Posted by wolf_blitzer85

That's too bad, the Witcher 2 is a great game in my opinion. Not so much for DA2 but hey whatever.

Posted by TheDudeOfGaming
@Egge: Mass Effect 2 /thread.
Posted by GetEveryone
@Egge: ...and everyone sighs in unison.
Posted by owl_of_minerva
@Egge: I don't know about this argument, given that Dragon Age 2 (a) reuses environments constantly (b) has shallow character builds akin to an MMO (c) substandard action mechanics (d) laughable encounter and quest design (e) and uneven writing, to say the least. The character builds are incredibly shallow and the combat isn't satisfying as either a reflection of said character customisation or in-itself as hack'n'slash. The story hardly matters at that point, even if it were particularly good, which it isn't. Everything about it seemed cheap and rushed, a typical slam dunk sequel, whereas CDProjekt seems to have put considerable effort into Twitcher 2 despite some questionable design decisions.
Edited by Egge

@benjaebe: I liked the environments in and of themselves (and during my DA2 playthrough I thought to myself repeatedly "wow, that looks really good...it's just too bad I have to see the same thing 200 times"), but it's especially in comparison with TW2 that I bring it up. TW2 has some great individual "set pieces" as far as environments go (and even some small things like the homes of random NPCs look very realistic and "lived in"), but the rest of what's in there is very dull.

Posted by DAFTPUNK

You sir are fucking WRONG, but hey it's your opinion :)

Posted by jorbear

@DAFTPUNK said:

You sir are fucking WRONG, but hey it's your opinion :)
Posted by Tennmuerti

@Egge said:

but there's no denying that any list of TW2's shortcomings can get awfully long

Bold statement, gonna have to go ahead and deny that.

@Egge said:

It would, at the very least, have to include things like an unbalanced skill system (resulting in extremely uneven difficulty), stupid boss fights with one-hit kills and QTEs, sluggish combat controls, confusing maze-like level design with lots of bland corridors, a needlessly cluttered interface, plenty of boring fetch assignments, imprecise quest markers and logs, a poorly introduced game world as well as longwinded dialogue which never manages to imbue the game's wooden characters with enough life to make the player fully invested in The Witcher's byzantine storyline with all its unpronounceable factions, vaguely defined nation states and morally reprehensible kings and queens.

lets go down the list of your statements:

  • every RPG ever has an unbalanced skill system, as soon as people figure it out every WRPG leveling system has been abused to create OP characters, and those that don't understand the system usually have a hard time overall. The only question is to what degree is it unbalanced? In Witcher 2 all three skill trees are very viable, mix and matching works too, so I'd say it is balanced enough. The only outlier in the skills was the OP shield sign, that has btw been nerfed already.
  • What one hit kills in boss fights are you talking about? The dragon at the start of the game is not a boss, it's a simple QTE and like all other QTEs in most games you have to retry if you fail. Neither Letho nor the octopus can one hit kill you at full health. How is QTE a problem, it happens only at the end of the respective boss fights for effect (and not even all of them), would you rather just watch an non interactive cinematic?
  • Controls have already been talked over on these boards to death, adopt to the combat and it starts to flow easily.
  • Confusing level design? The open areas are way smaller then anything in game like Oblivion or Morrowind. The dungeons and caves are fairly short and linear. I never had any problem with finding my way through the levels. And neither had anyone at least on these boards it seems. This is your personal problem if you have bad spacial coordination, not the games fault.
  • Do please specify how the interface is cluttered compared to other RPGs? This is the first time I ever hear anyone level this complain against W2
  • This game has less fetch quests then the following (non exhaustive) games: KotoR, BG2, NWN2, DA, DA2. This isn't a matter of opinion. It's fact. For you to call out a number of fetch quests in this game as too much is ridiculous.
  • Read the quest logs properly and to the full then. All the information necessary is always given, or can be deduced. Overbearing hand holding is a minus not a plus. Go replay some of the old school RPGs you claim you are a nerd of, see how much hand holding do Planescape or Baldur's Gate do.
  • Game world is not poorly introduced at all. This is a second game in the series for one, secondly there is a huge amount of information in your journal, thirdly characters give plenty of the necessary background information.
  • Too much talking in an RPG? - wait are you serious? I'm starting to have my doubts that you are a so called fan of old school RPGs as you claim.
  • Storyline is fairly simple actually. Failure to understand it is really on you, when other players seem to have managed to grasp it. For that matter you are shitting on the vagueness of the storyline having not finished the game ... makes this argument invalid by default
  • Nation states are well defined. There is a map. With names. You don't need to be a genius to understand it.
  • Kings and Queens are usually morally reprehensible, that's how you get to stay in power. This isn't a fairytale candy land.

@Egge said:

but so far that other deeply flawed RPG, Dragon Age 2, remains my favorite mainstream entry in this genre in 2011.

Congratulations, you have now openly invited other people to shit on your post. I'm not going to, just saying other people will find that easier to do then address any of your points.

The irony here is that most old school RPG fans disliked DA2 which seems inline with some of your complaints raised against Witcher 2 (read my comments above)

@Egge said:

@Laketown: the reason for this is the general clarity of DA2's mission objectives (go there, pick up X, give to Y etc.)

Funny how old school RPGs never had quest markers at all. You seem to overly value simplification. I found repetitive quests i DA2 of going from point A to B again and again boring, as did most people.

@Egge said:

@Laketown: as repetitive as the environments in DA2 undeniably were - at least they were almost without exception more detailed, distinct and well-designed than TW2's generic corridor crawls.

Let's not get carried away with blatant lies here.

Edited by Egge

@PeasForFees: TW2 has plenty of undistinguishable passages (stuff like mountain paths, mine corridors and even a lot of winding city streets) which I found quite dull and lacking in individual detail (although the textures are great). This makes the game world feel much more confined and constrained than it arguably is. And the awkward door animation system contributed to this feeling of being in a string of interconnected rooms rather than a fully realized game world. I love some of the environments, though, and merely stepping out into the teeming forest in Chapter 1 was a great experience (although even those woods got awfully samey after a while).

Posted by Egge

@Thule: Believe me, if my views are somehow difficult to relate to its not because they're not honest. At least from your perspective, the awful truth is that I'm the most blatantly earnest guy you'll ever encounter on the interwebz.

Posted by ArbitraryWater

Congratulations! I think you may have finally hit a nerve with the community! I'm going to guess it was the Dragon Age II comment, because you can't mention that game in a positive light without people jumping all over you. I have yet to play either of The Witcher games (though the first one is waiting in my steam library for a computer capable of running it), so I cannot comment on any sort of comparative quality, but from what I saw in the quick look, it seems like something I'd be into, if only for the talking, choice making, and dark fantasy-ing (which, as this game and every other property wearing that label prove, just means a lot of sexy time. The difference is that Dragon Age origins had those hilariously awkward sex scenes whereas Geralt just gets a sweet trading card with a topless woman. Oh Poland.)

Posted by Egge

@TheKramer89: Well, video game forum or not, it's always easier to simply infer something and let others draw the conclusions for themselves than to have to spell it out and stand up for your own opinion (talking about the original post I replied to, not this most recent response).

Edited by KarlPilkington

Touch her shoulder.

Not relevant here but do it anyway.

Posted by Ventilaator

The Witcher 2 SEEMS overrated because Bioware IS overrated. The Witcher popped over and actually gave the people a real RPG for a change, so of course everybody is going to flip out and go "HEY THIS IS ACTUALLY ALL THE WAY COMPLETELY TOTALLY AWESOME"
 
In a parallel-world where Bioware still makes RPG games, The Witcher 2 is okay. In this world however, The WItcher 2 stands out as something really special.

Posted by Bobby_The_Great
@Thule said:

@Egge said:

@Laketown: Although your comment leaves any possible argumentation entirely implicit, I would assume that you sense a contradiction at work here. I would disagree with that assessment, since at least for me it was far easier to stomach DA2's fetch quest stupidity than TW2's. Primarily, the reason for this is the general clarity of DA2's mission objectives (go there, pick up X, give to Y etc.) and the fact that - as repetitive as the environments in DA2 undeniably were - at least they were almost without exception more detailed, distinct and well-designed than TW2's generic corridor crawls.

Haha, now I know you're trolling. Nice try though.

This. I respect the OP opinion to say the Witcher 2 is overrated; everyone has an opinion. However, to say DA2 is better; that's trolling.
 
Also, this is a gaming forum, not your thesis presentation to the board for your doctorate. Cut out the formalities.
Edited by Egge

@Tennmuerti: While you make some reasonable points (or, rather, point out things I could have clarified further in my very short blog post) I get uneasy about the literalist interpretation of what I as a self-ascribed old school RPG fan "must" appreciate in an old school RPGs. For example, in principle I find hand-holding to be totally OK, and TW2 undeniably has some of that (compared to older RPGs, anyway) but doesn't implement it well enough. The combination of precise-looking quest markers and an extremely impressionistic map is one of the the most annoying aspects for me personally.

Likewise, lots of dialogue is good if and only if the dialogue itself is good, and in TW2 I feel there's a lot of confusing lore and hilarious swearing but not a lot of actual character development (and what made Triss such a needy pushover compared to the first game?). I played Witcher 1 fairly recently and the story exposition in TW2 still felt confusing and haphazardly put together, though it should also be said that I have a very low general tolerance for games which spend a lot of time talking about their lore (in fact, I partly disliked DA:O for many of the same reasons). And Planescape Torment was a glorified text adventure, not your typical old school RPG, so I don't think that's a great comparison. Besides, "old school" for me is Wizardry and Might & Magic, not a game released during one of the most recent "PC RPG revival" phases.

And yes, I liked DA2 (despite being underwhelming compared to DA:O) and am willing to defend the game no matter what the conventional wisdom is. And if you're right that people won't take me seriously simply because I don't agree with what seems to be the majority opinion on a given subject, then that's just sad and a fact of life but also sort of irrelevant.

Edited by Irvandus
@Cloudenvy said:

@Laketown said:

@Egge said:

confusing maze-like level design with lots of bland corridors, plenty of boring fetch assignments,

but so far that other deeply flawed RPG, Dragon Age 2, remains my favorite mainstream entry in this genre in 2011.

wait a minute...

*waits*

Yeah...
Posted by Egge

@Bobby_The_Great: Again, the problem is when someone is unwilling to accept that another person simply has a different opinion. Defining the other person's honestly expressed opinion as "trolling" is simply a personal attack, and there should be no room for that even in a video game forum (yes, I know how naive that sounds).

Also, I didn't necessarily say that DA2 was a better game than TW2 (it probably isn't, all things considered), but that I simply liked the former game better myself. My litany of objections to TW2 should be seen primarily as a reaction to the "Best Game Ever" reviews of Witcher 2, not as an objective point-by-point comparison to DA2.

Edited by DonPixel

@Egge: I don't mind if you liked DA2 more than TW2, Whatever rings your bell man.. Yet I don't see the point of doing a bad post with a lot of bad arguments (as a lot of people has pointed out already)

Both are "corridor" RPG but the quality of the characters, environments, dialogues, the extensive detail of everything in the world and the dark atmosphere of TW2 contrast with the Kiddie-WoWish unfinished and unpolished art direction of DA2.

I end up saying I couldn't put more than 8 hours into DA2 according to steam and I payed 60 dlls for that game.. biggest rip off in years.

@Egge said:

Also, I didn't necessarily say that DA2 was a better game than TW2 (it probably isn't, all things considered), but that I simply liked the former game better myself.

I liked Medal of Honor multiplayer, but I didn't see the point in trying to "promote" and obvious flawed product..

Edited by Egge

@DonPixel: A lot of people have stated their own opinions (along the lines of "hey, I for one liked aspect X of Witcher 2!" and "No way, DA2 was way worse!"), but I fail to see how that makes my post and my views stand out as especially "bad" merely because I disagree with the majority on this particular subject. Also, you seem to have an interesting definition of what "promoting" a game amounts to.

Edited by valrog

You haven't even experienced 1/8 of the game, you're hardly in a position to give a meaningful comment. Also, LOL Dragon Age II. Successful troll is successful.
 
Oh, and what @Tennmuerti: said.

Posted by DonPixel

@Egge said:

but I fail to see how that makes my post and my views stand out as especially "bad" merely because I disagree with the majority on this particular subject.

I would have to go point by point, but I'm lassy. Lets just say your views are constructed under flawed logic, twisted perception and contradictory associations.

As everything in life there is quality and if you happens to have "low quality opinions" people notice, let's not fall into cheap relativism here please.

Edited by Egge

@owl_of_minerva: I would want to stand by any one of the specific claims I made, but more important than that is probably to emphasize that the comparison with DA2 in the very last paragraph should primarily be interpreted on the both profound and superficial "what I personally had most fun playing" level; and not necessarily be directly related to any specific complaints I have about TW2.

To take a few examples, I personally like party- and stats-based games (even shallow ones!) more than I like single-character games, and I also tend to favor slightly sentimental and choice-devoid story/dialogue over the gritty, politically complex and morally dubious characters of a more "mature" game like TW2. Things like this go a long way towards explaining my outright preference for DA2, but should also be seen as secondary to what I would view as TW2's more objective problems (i.e. not in comparison with any one particular game but rather assessed against the background of all that "Best RPG of Ever" hype which currently surrounds the game).

Edited by Egge

@DonPixel: Hey, I'll take cheap relativism over "let's just say you're wrong" objectivism any day of the week, thankyouverymuch. If you're too lazy to say something more substantive then please also refrain from arbitrarily stating that I'm wrong; that's even less of an argument than anything contained in my short blog post. As you might have noticed, I'm mostly responding to and taking issue with the "lazy" comments here; not the ones which express coherent views and valid points. Even the angry, long, foul-mouthed and decidedly non-lazy comments provide a useful perspective, whereas the statement "your views are constructed under flawed logic, twisted perception and contradictory associations" is just a punch in the face. I can take it, but it just seems unnecessary and pointless.

Posted by Vodun
@The_Dude

That's just like, your opinion man...and I couldn't disagree more.

I love you
Posted by Egge

@valrog: Chapter 1 plus a large chunk of Chapter 2 does not constitute 1/8 of a game in which I know for a fact that Chapter 3 is said to be very short. So far the ones who simply cry "troll!" have contributed by far the most troll-like comments on this blog post.

Edited by DonPixel

@Egge: Don't get angry just get better at opinions.. Next time try at least to finish the game you are so eager to criticize, Because you know seems to be a big deal in order to do such thing.

But o well that's like my opinion bro, like whatever bro.

Posted by ryanwho

Witcher 2's gameplay isn't so great but everything else is great. Dragon Age 2's gameplay's pretty great and its everything else is oh man, so bad. So bad. Marry these 2 games, and by marry I mean take the 1 good thing out of DA2 and replace the one bad thing in W2, and you've got yourself a real winner.

Edited by Egge

@ArbitraryWater: This blog post was a bad idea in many ways - mostly because it doesn't really argue anything but merely expresses my (deeply held and actually quite carefully considered) opinions - but my primary goal was simply to state how baffled I am by all the praise that has been heaped on this good but somewhat unsuccesful and frustrating game.

Also, there appears to be a disheartening (though perhaps not surprising) herd mentality at work here in the reactions to both DA2 and TW2, since to be a true RPG fan (especially on the PC) you have to like TW2 and dislike DA2, with every other conceivable reaction being automatically regarded as insincere (which is really harmful since you can never defend yourself - with arguments, anyway - against a label). For a subculture which seems to take pride in being more intelligent and open-minded than the great unwashed masses of CoD players and WoW critters out there, this is not a healthy state of affairs.

Posted by Beyond_the_infinite
@DAFTPUNK said:
You sir are fucking WRONG, but hey it's your opinion :)
Posted by The_Dude

@Vodun said:

@The_Dude

That's just like, your opinion man...and I couldn't disagree more.

I love you

I love you too!

@ryanwho said:

Witcher 2's gameplay isn't so great but everything else is great. Dragon Age 2's gameplay's pretty great and its everything else is oh man, so bad. So bad. Marry these 2 games, and by marry I mean take the 1 good thing out of DA2 and replace the one bad thing in W2, and you've got yourself a real winner.

And I don't know about this, I thought DA2 had super weak gameplay compared with Origins, it was just so...shallow, or something like it. I'm not saying that I prefer The Witcher 2's more, but I prefer The Witcher 2's more. I might just be nuts though, I thought Dragon Age 2 was awful.

Posted by Bwast

I'll wager you consider Oblivion an old school RPG.

Posted by ArbitraryWater
@Egge: To be fair, there is a lot to be said about Dragon Age II being a massive disappointment, even if I feel like people overlook plenty of Bioware's past infractions for the sake of pretending that them being acquired by EA was the end of everything. If I really wanted to get snippy about it, I could say that the original KotOR, a game that plenty of people herald as one of Bioware's best, as the beginning of them watering down the mechanical complexity of their games for the sake of mainstream appeal. Of course, I also think that the change from the totally uninspired and fairly boilerplate "THIS IS A RPG" skill system of the first Mass Effect to the "Now we made it actually fun to play" system of Mass Effect 2 as a step up because I never viewed the first game as a very good "RPG" in the first place. 
 
But I digress. Opinions are opinions, and people who tell you your opinion is wrong are falling into the trap of internet hyperbole.
Posted by SeriouslyNow

This blog is about as good as DA2 is. And by that I mean it's stupid, poorly thought out, shallow, repeats itself, aggravates intelligent people who have taste and ends with a giant fat man bemoaning the failure of something or other who then griefs his audience until it's over.

Posted by Vinny_Says

Your opinion is wrong just like your asshole, or so some would say....I also like DA2 it was fun to play.

Posted by Klei

That's like... your opinion, TC. 
 
I think Witcher 2 is a phenomenal game from a small polish team and easily one of the best RPG's we've had in the past years.

Posted by Jimbo

@Egge said:

...as repetitive as the environments in DA2 undeniably were - at least they were almost without exception more detailed, distinct and well-designed than TW2's generic corridor crawls.

The Witcher 2:

Dragon Age 2:

Edited by TerraMantis

@Egge
 
I could have agreed with a lot of what you were saying at the beginning. Basically, that W2 is a flawed game and that essentially the RPG gaming world has either lost sight of greatness or it has been so long since something truly amazing has come out that we've dropped or "bar" so low that the first sight of something resembling awesome gets overpraised. I myself being an old-school PC gamer was inclined to agree...to a degree. But, when you said the DA2 thing it discredited your entire argument. DA2 was such departure from Origin's mechanics, playstyle, and penchant, only one installment into the franchise, that it was disgusting. It was like you brought in a character witness to a trial...and shot yourself in the foot. 
 
I won't deny that W2 had problems and there may be too many people getting their knees dirty with praise of the game, but in no way shape or form
is it even comparable to the mindless zombification DA underwent. 
 
A real list of problems with W2 from an old-school RPG gamer. 
============================================================================================================================
 
A bit too short with seemingly sudden ending...but has 16 different endings so replayability is still high with a fantastically mature and sophisticated story. Geralt isn't "black or white", he isn't even "gray", Geralt simply seeks the truth. 

It does not "drop you into the world without a good introduction"....it is the second installment, go play the first, W2 literally picks up where the first ended.  

Interfacing has MANY issues that the first Witcher did not have. It is clunky, not tight, it doesn't tell you if you've read a book or not before, whether or not you already have "X" amount of potions while in your brewing state, when at a vendor it also doesn't indicate if you own something prior, many other menu interface issues. 

Lack of options: no meter for voice audio which is on the same meter as ambient sounds. Might not sound like a problem, but many of the soft spoken characters(main character being one of them) get drown out by background chatter and noises.  No easy way to remap keybindings. Others.

Broken camera angles and lack of a shadow ruin one of my favorite parts of W1 which was Dice poker. Plus they implemented you having to roll your own dice and very often the dice go flipping off of the board.  

The inability to be able to "drink potions on the fly" is a problem. Unlike W1 you have to sit down and meditate to drink potions. In W1 you only had to sit to brew them, not consume them. This inability to drink already brewed potions to adapt to the situation at hand practically begs the player to have to go and die to analyze the mechanics of a battle scenario then reload the game and consume the potions you believe will be needed to over come the scenario. 

Some shoddy targeting. The combat also leaves behind the combat systems of W1 which were strangely a mix between feeling very turn-based while feeling action based simultaneously. Also, dropping the three different fighting stances. W2 is a combination of light and heavy attacks. Changed, but probably not a bad one for many people.
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Trust me...the list may seem a bit long, but the "pros" list is pages longer than the "cons" list..
 
My "The Witcher 2: Assassin of Kings" Review.  (The bad is personal things about the game i dont like, and the ugly are parts of the game that are just...bad no matter your personal preference. The whole rest of the huge review would then be "the good" even though i don't title it as so.)
 
In the end, all i really got from this article was that the writer of the article is a victim of his own hypes (or lack there of). The PC RPG community has been throwing a "hate storm" at DA2...and he liked it. The gaming community has been praising W2...he dislikes it worse than the game that is getting bashed. Sounds like he spends too much time on forums and in articles reading about these games before playing them and either over or under stimulates his expectations.

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