The Witcher: CD Projekt Red confirm new Witcher game’s development – what we know about ‘The Witcher 4’ so far

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The Witcher: CD Projekt Red confirm new Witcher game's development - what we know about 'The Witcher 4' so far (Image courtesy of CD Projekt Red)
The Witcher: CD Projekt Red confirm new Witcher game’s development – what we know about ‘The Witcher 4’ so far (Image courtesy of CD Projekt Red)

The video game studio behind The Witcher franchise and Cyberpunk 2077, CD Projekt Red, confirmed on Monday (March 21) that development of the next Witcher game is now underway.

CD Projekt Red’s announcement comes just months after the second season of Netflix’s adaptation of Andrzej Sapkowski’s fantasy novels, The Witcher, landed on the streaming platform, with Henry Cavill returning in the eponymous role as witcher Geralt of Rivia.

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The game will be the next installment of The Witcher game franchise, which soared to new heights of success upon the release of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt in 2015 – winning 250 Game of the Year awards and spawning the Blood & Wild and Hearts of Stone DLC packs.

But unlike CD Projekt Red’s previous Witcher games, developed on its own REDengine, the next game will run on Unreal Engine 5 – the new, next-gen ready iteration of Epic Games’ Unreal game engine.

In its announcement on Monday, CD Projekt Red said The Witcher 4’s development on Unreal Engine 5 will kick off a multi-year partnership with Epic Games to harness the potential of its new engine to create open-world experiences that can build on The Witcher 3’s appeal.

CD Projekt Red’s CTO, Pawel Zawodny, called the move “a long-term, fulfilling tech partnership” and one that is key to the studio’s tech-led approach to future game developments.

“It is vital for CD Projekt Red to have the technical direction of our next game decided from the earliest possible phase as; in the past, we spent a lot of resources and energy to evolve and adapt REDengine with every subsequent game release,” said Zawodny.

“This cooperation is so exciting, because it will elevate development predictability and efficiency, while simultaneously granting us access to cutting-edge game development tools. I can’t wait for the great games we’re going to create using Unreal Engine 5!”

Likewise, Epic Games founder and CEO Tim Sweeney said: “Epic has been building Unreal Engine 5 to enable teams to create dynamic open worlds at an unprecedented scale and level of fidelity.

“We are deeply honored by the opportunity to partner with CD Projekt Red to push the limits of interactive storytelling and gameplay together, and this effort will benefit the developer community for years to come.”

The Witcher’s official Twitter account added in a reply on the platform that despite its partnership with Epic, developers “are not planning on making the game exclusive to one storefront”.

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No further details about what to expect from the new Witcher game or a potential release date for it have been announced, but the reveal on Monday teased “A New Saga” for the video game franchise – with fans now wondering whether the cryptic slogan could suggest a move away from Geralt as the protagonist.

This theory has gained even more ammunition due to the presence of a cat medallion in the new game’s teaser image released by CD Projekt Red, seemingly referencing the Witcher School of the Cat explored in the novels, Witcher 3: Wild Hunt and card game Gwent.

The game director of the next Witcher game, however, has been revealed to be CD Projekt Red’s Jason Slama, who led on the Gwent card game spin-off from The Witcher games.

slama tweeted on Monday: “I am super thrilled to announce that I have humbly been working to ensure the success of the next big AAA The Witcher game as its Game Director! Think you could join the team? We have tons of roles open with the possibility of remote work we could discuss!”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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