This Is How ‘The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt’ Works On Nintendo Switch
Ever since The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt was confirmed as coming to Nintendo Switch during the E3 2019 Nintendo Direct, gamers have been asking the same question: how the bloody heck is CD Projekt Red's fantasy masterpiece, previously available on PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, going to run on what is, basically, a handheld console?
CDPR's press peeps issued some information immediately after the Direct, which revealed that the whole game and its two terrific expansions - Hearts of Stone and Blood and Wine - would fit onto one Switch game card, with no additional downloading required.
Also included are the 16 smaller pieces of DLC that rolled out after the game's original 2015 release, adding cosmetic options, new armour and small quests. There's a terrific one about a village full of pigs, so be sure to look out for it.
You can see what else is in the 'Complete Edition' box, due for release later in 2019, above. (It's basically what we all got in 2015, without the CD soundtrack.)
But to answer that question, of just what we're going to see when The Witcher 3 lands on Switch, well, CDPR have explained all.
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Naturally, the game has had to take a bit of a visual downgrade to slide onto Switch in a playable state, and as such it'll run at 540p in handheld mode and 720p when docked, the latter with dynamic resolution. Which means it'll look better on the telly - not that I'll mind the 540p look when I'm hacking drowners apart on my commutes.
CDPR have charged World War Z and Ghostbusters The Video Game: Remastered developers Saber Interactive with the Switch porting duties, albeit in "close cooperation" with the game's creators. Saber also worked on Halo: The Master Chief Collection and Quake Champions, so they've a history of high-profile projects.
Storage wise, Saber and CDPR have managed to squeeze all of The Witcher 3 into around 32GB - as in, it'll come on a 32GB game card, and not a 64GB one, which I was half anticipating (given The Witcher 3 takes up around 70GB on my PlayStation 4). That... That is some kind of black magic, and I'm not sure I really want to ask too many questions about the sacrifices made to make it happen.
And to those preferring to get their games digitally: you'd best start freeing up some space on your Switch. If you've not already got an extra SD card in there, what the heck are you hecking doing?
The Switch port of The Witcher 3 will not support any cross-save functionality - which is to be expected, frankly. So if you, like me, have put 400 hours into this game already, you won't be able to pick it up from there for portable play. You'll have to start all over again, through White Orchard, those first steps into Novigrad, chasing Ciri to Skellige and, later, through a whole other dimension.
Featured Image Credit: CD Projekt RED