The Witcher: Monster Slayer is Pokemon Go meets Elder Scrolls: Blades – and we played it
The Witcher began as a dark fantasy book series before exploding in popularity with the eponymous video games, and the franchise reached new audiences with the Netflix TV show. Naturally, now is the time for a mobile game to land big with fans – so get ready for a game inspired by… Pokémon Go?
Yes, The Witcher: Monster Slayer, a new game developed by Polish studio Spokko slated for worldwide launch on July 21, is a location-based mobile game that covers your surroundings with fantastic environments filled with monsters and quests. Similar to game developer Niantic’s hit Pokémon Go, you’ll have to wander around IRL to encounter difficult enemies, collect items, and explore the story.
The game is a bit of a mix of Pokémon Go and Elder Scrolls: Blades – instead of capturing monsters, you’ll run your finger to slice them with your sword, though you’ll probably want to brace yourself with oils, potions, bombs. , and magic adapted to each enemy, as in the main games. But there is something unique about Monster Slayer that matches its rich literary, interactive, and cinematic origins: history.
“It’s not that easy on mobile to make a story-based game, and it’s even harder to make a location-based game, but it creates a lot of opportunities,” said Quest Designer Przemek Tarczyński. of Monster Slayer and responsible for the story. TechRadar in an interview. “I don’t think anyone else has tried it, at least on such a scale or with such success.”
Monster Slayer will have a progression of quests that tell a story adapted to the dark and dangerous world of the witcher. Players will of course play one of the titular magically enhanced warriors and follow both a main storyline told through animated 2D cutscenes and dialogue between characters using the game’s 3D engine. The game’s developers didn’t want to spoil the details, they hinted at an epic story worthy of the franchise.
But don’t worry, you’ll also come across some familiar Witcher quests that require a dirty job to kill monsters, like being asked to chase a villager kidnapped by Nekkars, Tarczyński told us – you’ll just have to run the bad guys. in the real world this time.
And along the way, don’t be surprised if you come across some familiar faces from the franchise, but a warning: Monster Slayer takes place 200 years before the games and the show start, so don’t expect to meet Gerald, Yennefer, Ciri, Dandelion (Dandelion for Netflix watchers) or others who wouldn’t fit such a timeline.
Starting the game earlier gives the team plenty of design space to tell new stories, especially since this time in the Witcher universe there are a lot more monster hunters roaming around (the Slanderous propaganda turns the public against wizards and their numbers are reduced until few remain in Geralt’s time).
“We’ve found that this experience of being a witcher and building your own story in this universe is something new,” said Witcher executive producer: Monster Slayer Mateusz Janczewski. “It will be a game for millions of wizards around the world, and we thought it would be something sexy that we thought would be cool for gamers.”
Get your phones ready for the world premiere of The Witcher: Monster Slayer, available for free on iOS and Android on July 21! Android users can pre-register now on the Google Play Store: https://t.co/wwzcA7PW4z See you soon! #TheWitcherMonsterSlayer pic.twitter.com/rFfYXl6pIGJuly 2, 2021
The Witcher: Monster Slayer is a free-to-play mobile game, which means players can browse the game without spending any money – but if they choose, they can purchase additional resources to craft equipment as well as items. of fight. (like oils, potions and bombs). Quests and story content will cost nothing more and will be available to all players at launch.
The story of the game will be told in quests discovered around the world – at launch, six main quests and six hidden quests – which players must physically approach to engage. While the Monster Slayer team agrees that this is a tricky issue, especially for players with limited mobility (some monsters and items will randomly spawn around players, but quests appear to be some distance away) , the developers believe this is a key draw of the Game. People can play Witcher 3 at home, but to experience Monster Slayer, they have to venture out into the world – and that can lead to experiences. Fortuitous IRL.
“For example, the [quest objective] is on the other side of the river and you have to find a bridge and it won’t be as close as you thought, and maybe you need to visit the part of your town that you have never visited ”, a declared Tarczyński. “It’s kind of a LARP more than an RPG.”
There’s something else unique that could make Monster Slayer “one of the most hardcore RPG experiences ever,” as Tarczyński puts it: The game is constantly recording your progress. If you make a decision in the story, it’s locked forever (unless you want to start over with a new character) because you can’t just load an old save file. As he says, “If you make a choice, you have to live with the consequences. “
These effects may not be felt immediately, but could have ramifications down the line: Monster Slayer will be adding more story quests with Seasons, which are expected to arrive twice a year. The seasons will add more content and fill in what happens in a world 200 years before the main games.
In theory, the story of Monster Slayer could catch up with the plot of the main games, Janczewski noted, but it’s a long time to meet before the mobile game catches up: “At some point, because we let’s do the service game with free- to play, maybe at some point we can get to the point where Geralt is alive, you know? You never know what happened.
What it’s like to be a witcher
In our time, with an early release of The Witcher: Monster Slayer, it feels like a game steeped in the world of games, shows, and books. We made our way through familiar enemies and prepared for battles with oils and potions specially made for groups of monsters. We have drawn signs on the screen to initiate magic (a “V” for breathing fire with Igni, for example, corresponding to its glyph). We plucked herbs from the ground to throw them in a cauldron.
Monster Slayer clearly owes a lot to location-based games like Inverse and Pokemon Go, layering a map of my area with monsters, items, and other places of interest. It’s honestly more fun separating enemies than catching Pokémon, but don’t expect complex fights – the fun will mostly be feeling that there is more going on in your neighborhood of a supernatural and sinister variety. .
Truth be told, we haven’t experienced the quests that the developers of Spokko have referred to as the most unique parts of the game. Maybe a lot of players won’t, as they will still enjoy a casual game that doesn’t ask. not too much time – just a few minutes here and there while I run the game on a walk. The developers of Monster Slayer know this:
“Maybe on a daily basis you are not going to play the quests, but when you have the weekend and you have an hour, then you can start the adventure and dive into it,” Janczewski said. .
Likewise, I didn’t feel the impact of the real world on the game: rain or other weather conditions will change the types of monsters that appear, although I saw that different enemies would appear after dark. night. There are even quests that change if you complete them overnight, although the developers have been shy of what would be different walking around in Witch Hour.
But it’s a new game that costs nothing to try and evokes the feeling that there is more going on in our world. For fans of the franchise as well as mobile gamers looking for something to liven up their outdoor adventures – and find reasons to get out of the house – The Witcher: Monster Slayer will have a lot to offer, especially since We’re all waiting for the second season of Netflix’s Witcher show.
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