The release of The Witcher 4 is being awaited by fans with increasing anticipation. As of this moment, CD Projekt RED has confirmed the following. more and more developers from the studio are joining the work on the Polaris project – more widely known just as The Witcher 4. Is the story of Geralt of Rivia over? Or will the Butcher of Blaviken return in glory and glory, saving the mood among CD Projekt’s investors and fans of the Polish developer’s work? It’s time to gather everything we already know about The Witcher 4.
The Witcher 4 is slowly becoming a priority for CDPR
In a summary of the first half of 2023, CD Projekt RED confirmed that. more and more resources of the Polish studio are being directed to work on the first installment of the new Witcher trilogy. It is currently expected to be handled by more than 260 people, as can be heard in the video below.
Once work on the Phantom Liberty expansion for Cyberpunk 2077 is complete, most of the CD Projekt RED crew will be put to work on The Witcher 4. This should happen soon, as Phantom Liberty will debut later this month – on September 26.
It is worth quoting in passing the data shared by studio head Adam Kicinski. Total revenues in the first half of the year amounted to PLN 325 million, and the group’s net profit exceeded PLN 91 million. The numbers are shot up primarily by The Witcher 3 free download and Cyberpunk 2077 – the former has already sold more than 50 million units. Projects from both brands were expected to cost the group PLN 160 million.
The Witcher 4 – when will it be released?
Work on The Witcher 4 is already underway, as officially confirmed by Polish studio CD Projekt RED. The new installment is expected to launch the second trilogy of games set in the universe created by Andrzej Sapkowski. A concept for the new The Witcher has already been created, but according to Adam Kicinski, the actual development of the game is expected to take as long as four years. and, as we mentioned, it will launch only after work on the expansion to Cyberpunk 2077 is completed.
Since when has work on The Witcher 4 been underway? This is unknown. Jason Slama, the game’s lead director, reported on LinkedIn that he has been busy “directing the next big AAA game from the Witcher universe” since June 2021. How much of that time did pre-production take? We don’t know that either, but this information is another clue suggesting that the new The Witcher may surprise us all sooner than we think.
The developers have confirmed in talks with investors that Polaris (The Witcher 4) will appear before the release of the revamped version of the first Witcher.
The Witcher 4 will carry a different title
It is worth mentioning that Kicinski also mentioned that the the game will not be titled The Witcher 4. For the moment, we do use this nomenclature, but it’s a working term that virtually the entire gaming world has adopted to simplify communication, at least until an official title or subtitle is revealed.
The Witcher 4 – first official information
While the first announcement of the new game set in the Witcher universe was quite modest – addressed in social media with just one graphic – the Internet exploded with conjectures about what The Witcher 4 might be about.
The element that ignited the fandom’s imagination to red-hot was the… graphic depicting a medallion in the snow (main photo of the article). The pendant was accompanied by the caption “a new saga begins,” bearing the Witcher logo. This was enough for online investigations to begin, aimed at extracting as much information as possible from the said graphic. The first battle among fans heated up in the context of an attempt to clarify what kind of beast appears on the medallion. Some opted for a cat, while others contradicted this, suggesting that it must be a lynx. In the end, Robert Malinowski, who works at CD Projekt RED, confirmed on Twitter that it is a lynx.
This means that the creators do not intend to limit themselves to the Witcher canon, reaching for inspirations suffused by fan works. The idea for the Lynx guild, whose founders include Lambert and Keira Metz, was proposed by Internet users. What else could the creators draw from fans? It’s hard to answer that question at the moment, but the mere fact that CD Projekt RED is honoring it is a good prediction. The Witcher 4 thus promises to be very interesting.
Who will we play in the 4th installment of The Witcher?
The Witcher 4 with Geralt? Or maybe with Ciri? At this point, it can also be problematic – based on just one graphic – to divine the plot. If one assumes that it actually the starting point for the new story will be the Lynx school, the idea that Vesemir would be the playable protagonist should be put between fairy tales (because the old man simply did not live to see the founding days of the Lynx school). It is also difficult to suspect that the protagonist will be Geralt again – after all, the graphic clearly says “a new saga begins” … Unless it is about a new series of adventures of the white-haired man, but this is rather doubtful. An unlikely candidate for a heroine is also Ciri – who works well as a supporting character. The developers would have to devote more attention to her this time and significantly expand the mechanics created for her relative to what we could see in the trilogy. However, it seems that her story is also wrapped up, as in the case of Geralt. However, the developers indicate that they would like to return to the heroine’s past.
Lambert, on the other hand, fits into the Lynx school concept. In addition, he is a charismatic character, capable of having no less interesting adventures as Gwynbleidd.
Plenty of fans would also like to see Witcher training – perhaps in the form of an extended prologue introducing the ins and outs of gameplay? Grass trial, experiments with mutagens, training on the morden, moreover, relationships with other young Witchers and outlining the mentoring thread with the still-unfolding Vesemir – everyone would have been satisfied with such a development. We would finally get to see familiar faces in rejuvenated versions. Such a start with characters we have grown fond of is a pretty good introduction to epic adventures on the trail, right?
Among the admiration for the emerging The Witcher 4, there are also voices full of concern about whether CD Projekt RED will be tempted to shaping the protagonist in the fashion of the universal cyberpunk V. The new Witcher must be “some” – have his trappings and qualities, and be characterized by traits for which we will love him as much as we love the wimpy Geralt. Customization of the protagonist, on the other hand, will force the creators to wash him of special features that could have a huge impact on the plot, and yet The Witcher’s trump card from RED is its juicy lines of dialogue and expressive characters.
Unreal Engine 5 = Witcher skins in Fortnite?
The Poles squeezed the best out of REDengine – the proprietary engine on which the fabulous-looking The Witcher 3 and Cyberpunk 2077, which had its moments, among others, were hulking. However, the technology is constantly evolving and today gamers soften their knees primarily at the sight of water features, which are highlighted by materials showing the possibilities of Unreal Engine 5. Therefore, it is not surprising that the decision of the creators that the next part of the Witcher series should use this, today’s top solution, which will continue to set gaming trends for many years to come. The developers made the announcement on their website, additionally announcing a closer partnership with Epic Games.
Does this partnership mean exclusivity for Epic Games Store in terms of game distribution outside of GOG? Or will CD Projekt’s platform cease to exist by the time of release and EGS will enjoy full exclusivity? Well, and what about skins for Fortnite, because on other levels, too, the collaboration between the companies may be in effect after all? We do not yet know the answers to these questions.
Fortunately, in addition to licensing issues, Epic Games offers support in working with the engine, which will probably have a positive impact on the pace of work on the game itself. Perhaps as a result, we won’t have to wait so long for the new Witcher.
What will The Witcher 4 be like? We’ll see…
For the moment, any unconfirmed theory is a rumor… or maybe a Fawn? So one has to be patient, because while one can of course be hit with such predictions, which is what I’m hoping for in the case of Lambert’s story, at this point it’s just fortune-telling. In terms of gameplay, the new saga will most likely resemble the previous one, although the developers have also mentioned multiplayer elements to enrich the single-player experience. However, it is unknown at this point what they would look like.
One thing is for sure – the REDs have learned a lot, both with the release of The Witcher and Cyberpunk 2077, and they know what both their strengths and weaknesses are. So I wish for myself, and for each of you, that in these few years we will have good enough machines – or a decent reserve in our bank account to buy them – to enjoy graphical waterworks and an insanely good storyline, of course rated in Poland and around the world at the maximum possible review eyeballs.