Witcher 3 is considered one of the best games of the last generation. With almost universal praise, the game is often seen as a benchmark for Open World RPG games. The game left audiences wanting more from the Witcher universe. Recently, CDPR confirmed that development on a new Witcher game is underway. With the less than stellar reception of Cyberpunk 2077, CDPR will undoubtedly be looking to redeem themselves with this new game.
Previously, we covered speculation regarding the lore of the new game, and now we have some more information about the game. In a recent state of Unreal, CDPR announced that Witcher 4 will be developed on Unreal Engine 5. Previous games from the developer were based on their in-house REDengine. The developers have also explained why they decided to make the switch. According to director Jason Slama, the new engine will help developers deal with the numerous problems with an open-world game. Furthermore, using a third-party Engine will help CDPR save time that would have been spent working on updating their REDengine.
Director Jason Slama also shared how switching to Unreal Engine came to mind. He talked about an older Unreal Engine 4 tech demo based on medieval times, which looked oddly similar to Witcher environments from the past.
A sign in the video saying “Monster Slayer Wanted” also caught the eye of the director. He stated that it was almost like Unreal Engine was calling to them.
It would not be too far-fetched to think that this tech demo could somewhat inspire the new Witcher game. The atmosphere in the demo seems like a perfect fit for the Witcher games. From what we understand, Jason Slama was thoroughly intrigued by the demo. Perhaps we could see a similar artstyle or some form of integration of these environments into the new game. The assets from the demo are likely still available in the latest version of Unreal Engine. It would not be too difficult to update and incorporate them into the new Witcher game.
Unreal Engine 5 will undoubtedly open a whole new world of opportunities to the developers. With both Unreal Engine and the power of the modern consoles, the new Witcher game could very well turn out to be something extraordinary. However, the game is still likely in the very early phases of development. After the lackluster release of Cyberpunk 2077, the studio has more reason to take their time with the game. With enough time and effort, CDPR could again elevate the open-world RPG genre to new heights and regain the trust they lost with Cyberpunk 2077.
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