Rejoice! The days of scavenging Velen from The Witcher 3 for juicy loot and finding nothing but a bunch of candles, broken rakes, and a broken heart for your troubles are coming to an end. However, it seems that this bargain could come at a cost.
Launching on December 3, The Witcher 14's next-gen update will include six mods created by the community to make life on The Continent easier. These will range from reworked graphics to general quality-of-life changes, enhancing the immersion of The Witcher's dense open-world fantasy of political intrigue and monster slaying.
Along with community-created mods to improve the appearance of monsters and make the minimap more like the 3D world, the update will also incorporate a modified version of a mod originally created by a senior designer of the base game and its two expansions.
However, while it's great to see CD Projekt RED acknowledge their passionate modding community by making their work official, the next-gen update will break many existing mods made for the game.
Lots of questions about upcoming community mods with W3NG, so here's the list again:⚙️The Witcher 3 HD Reworked Project by HalkHogan⚙️HD Monsters Reworked by Denroth⚙️Immersive Real-time Cutscenes by teiji25⚙️Nitpicker's Patch by chuckcash⚙️World Map Fixed by Terg500 https://t.co/fs1oN3u0zmDecember 7, 2022
Taking to Twitter (opens in a new tab), CD Projekt RED Global Community Manager Marcin Momot shared the list of mods being worked on in The Witcher 3's next-gen update.
- The Witcher 3 HD project reworked by HalkHogan
- HD monsters reworked by Denroth
- Immersive scenes in real time by teiji25
- chuckcash nitpicker patch
- World map fix by Terg500
(Image credit: CD Projekt Red)
The mod I'm most looking forward to seeing in The Witcher 3 is the FCR3 Immersion and Gameplay Tweaks mod (Opens in a new tab). Created by Andrzej Kwiatkowski, one of the game's original designers, he describes the mod in his listing by saying that it “doesn't look for deep, intrusive changes; instead, it is intended to maintain the original feel of the game, sometimes moving closer to the original intent behind the designs. That means it's focused on "fixing dip switches, buffing underperforming skills and items, cosmetic changes, and bug fixes."
This all sounds lovely, but the most intriguing part of the mod is an optional pack that removes unwanted loot from the game. This will be especially useful for us serial explorers like myself who are forced to loot every item we can find, and it will reduce the amount of low-value and pure items Geralt finds from time to time. Looking at you, rotten meat.
The Witcher 3 HD Rework Project (Opens in a new tab) is another one of the mods that gets its place in the spotlight. Originally uploaded in 2015, this mod gives The Witcher 3 a facelift by improving the integrity and quality of textures, character models, terrain, creatures, and other elements. Expect a complete visual overhaul to meet the demands of 4K gaming.
Denroth's HD Monsters Rework (opens in a new tab) perfectly complements the HD Rework project by fully or partially reworking certain visual elements of The Witcher 3 monsters. That said, the creator says the goal is to stay true to the standard version and simply improve what already exists. These vampires are going to look hideous; I can not wait.
The World Map Fixes (opens in a new tab) mod is small but brilliant and will make your 2D minimap reflect the terrain features of the world around you. At the same time, Nitpicker's Patch – Miscellaneous Visual Details (opens in a new tab) will fix smaller instances of visual inconsistencies when it comes to DLC armor sets, bodies of water, and costumes not displaying correctly in cutscenes.
Speaking of cutscenes, the Immersive Real-Time Cutscenes mod (opens in a new tab) will render previously rendered cutscenes in real time. This means better continuity in terms of character models, as well as general bug fixes for specific scenes.
(Image credit: CD Projekt RED)
The cloud behind the silver lining
With so many tweaks and additions in the next-gen update, broken mods are a necessary (albeit unfortunate) casualty.
“Updating a game means we modified multiple files, so mods that modify those exact files stop working. If we want to change things in the game or add things, it can't be helped,” writes technical support manager Karolina Niewęgłowska in a forum. post (opens in a new tab), explaining that “studio teams should focus on making updates as good as possible [rather than] minimizing changes.
Niewęgłowska has also included a test list of the most popular mods (opens in a new tab) currently in use by the community, detailing which ones broke in the update and which ones we can still expect to work after the update. 14
Niewęgłowska also says that once the update is live, CDPR's team of modders will be actively working with modders in the community to provide advice and assistance as they fix their work. CDPR is already thinking about it; Niewęgłowska writes that “along with the game update, we will release a new version of the Witcher 3 Command Line Tools for modders (Modkit (opens in a new tab)), suitable for the updated game with many bug fixes included. ».
Modders will also be able to use a new version of the TW3 Wolfkit modding client (opens in a new tab), which will be released “soon after the update is released (also when possible, given their plans for holidays).»
(Image credit: CD Projekt)
Toss a coin to your modders
The Witcher 3 still ranks high on most lists of the best RPGs of all time, and for good reason. The passionate modding community has been creating improvements and fixes for the game for almost eight years, and it's great to see CD Projekt RED embrace these mods with open arms.
It gives me some hope that when Gwent: The Witcher Card Game hands the reins over to the community in 2024, we'll see a similar enthusiasm to keep the game going despite the developers heading into new pastures.