It turns out that being a “player” actually pays off in this final, swan song DLC of Geralt’s journey as a witcher. You see, the person who you talk to at the end of it all is based on who you romanced in the main campaign. In my infinite, phallic wisdom, I tried to get both Triss and Yennefer… And I’m SO glad I did!
BLOOD AND WINE
While The Witcher 3 might be considered yesterday’s news, I gave the game an absolutely glowing review, and naturally decided to give its DLC a chance. This, in turn, resulted in another glowing review of the Hearts of Stone DLC expansion. With yet another reason to play The Witcher 3, the Blood and Wine expansion kicks up the three (sometimes dreadful) letters “D-L-C” up another notch. This expansion has its whole own area, and with it comes a LOT of things to do like a silly photo op, the inevitable noble party to attend, the unavoidable job of detective, your own vineyard, and even some new character mutation upgrades. Yet having said all that, I feel like I’m not doing justice to what this DLC offers, but in favor of brevity the one thing that matters is if this expansion offers a story worth its price. The answer is a resounding “yes”. Not only is the story ripe with fleshed out and often witty dialogue, but its ending sequence is something I don’t wish to spoil, and instead tease you and tell you that it’s out of fairy tales. Yes, plural, and yes, literally. This expansion summarily offers basically everything the main game offers with a hint more flare for the exceptional, and I am thoroughly impressed at its offering that does, indeed, rival some full games. Finally, tying into my mention of being infinitely phallic wise, this DLC does what Hearts of Stone didn’t: have a tie-in to the main game. Sure, it’s just somewhat of a cameo at the end, but to know that it ties into the decisions I made in the main game created the very connection that was missing in the last expansion… More on that later.
I didn’t notice any major changes since my time in the last expansion except for some UI changes. There could be more, but if nothing stands out as a major overhaul, it’s more than likely the focus was on relieving the cumbersome nature of an RPG’s inventory system. At the same time, I did notice the game ran rather more smoothly overall completely maxed out, and yet a game over a year old has no excuse to have even minor unsightly glitches or bugs. While small and having zero impact on the experience, a year is plenty of time to resolve and squash just about every issue the game has, so I find having any at this stage somewhat unacceptable.
The thing is, that last statement pretty much sums up the only flaw this DLC showed that the game has. When I said I was thoroughly impressed, I meant it. This expansion brought me right back into the bewitching world of being Geralt: all the sly dialogue; all the beastly combat; all the open-world content; and most of all, well-written story elements to keep me pressing forward. DLC normally doesn’t count as an “expansion”, but here the name is rightly justified. Topping this wonderful cake that isn’t a lie is a tie-in to the main game that turned out to be totally in my favor. You see, I got to end Geralt’s journey sitting down and chatting with my new favorite female heroine: Ciri. This beloved moment almost brought a tear to my eye, and also brought to close one of the greatest games of last year as well as one of the most worthy $20 DLC purchases any owner of The Witcher 3 can possibly make. If you loved The Witcher 3, you owe yourself the expansion to finish off what I can only surmise as one of the most justified, modern RPGs this generation has ever seen.
I give The Witcher 3 – Blood and Wine DLC…