Re: The Witcher 2
Yep, got it this morning and played a few hours. It's early days, but initial impressions are extremely positive. The game is so far in advance of the original that I've come to the conclusion that the developer's abilities were massively hampered by a restrictive game engine, where as in the sequel they've got one of the best gaming engines I've seen in recent years. The game actually looks on-par with Uncharted 2, and that's saying something.
The combat is sorta similar to Demon's Souls at this stage for me, which is another great feat. I'm on hard mode, and it's a case of making blows really count, not exposing yourself constantly, and adapting to different opponents. I'm loving it. And that's without even using new talents or abilities yet.
The overall production values, sound and design of the game seem fantastic. I really got absorbed into the game during the opening section, especially the castle siege (don't worry that's not a spoiler; it's essentially the tutorial).
If it maintains this quality for the duration then it's a definite contender for GotY in my opinion, alongside another superb PC title in Shogun 2. It's a shame not many of the staff at GC.com actually play PC games like these, since they really do deserve as much recognition as possible. How can anyone play crap like Fable III when this game blows it out of the water in less than 1 minute of gameplay (and that really isn't an exaggeration)? Ironically Fable III gets a release on PC too this week... lolz
Surprisingly the game has ran smooth as butter on my rig too (*touch wood*), though I let the game pre-determine the graphics rather than set them myself, since I don't want to risk framerate issues until a patch sorts optimisation issues out (which there are likely to be). I expect some crashes eventually, but to not have encountered any hiccups during installation and starting the game is a very good sign considering the original game (where such acts were rare indeed).
Anyway, in summary, this game owns. ;p