The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt offers both a solid gaming challenge and myriad activities – which together make for a seriously in-depth and compelling experience. So you can make the most of your time with the game and stay one step ahead of all the monsters and ghosts trying to kill you, we’ve got some more tips for you (in addition to the pointers we gave you earlier this week!).
All I Do Is Quen
Quen is an extremely useful Sign at Geralt’s disposal, providing him a one-hit shield against nearly all enemy attacks. Before any major battle – or really anytime you see an enemy in the distance – cast Quen on yourself. You’ll start your fight with a shield and a full stamina bar, so you’re free to use other Signs.
Dodge, Dip, Dive, Duck, Dodge, and Roll
Geralt has two quick ways to avoid attacks: a sidestepping dodge, or a bigger rolling leap. While the dodge should be your go to move, there are certain enemies, and attacks that will require a full roll to avoid, or to maneuver yourself for a counterattack. Practice early in the game so you can learn the timing.
If you’re playing on either of the two highest difficulties (we recommend “Blood and Broken Bones” for a nice challenge), Geralt won’t restore his health while meditating. Not a big deal; you can keep food and potions on hand. But there’s also an ability – Suns and Stars – which causes Geralt’s health to recharge while he’s out of combat. It can make all the difference when you’re lost in monster-filled woods, far from a fast travel point.
Your New Friends: Matthew Parry and Matt LeBlock
Holding down LT makes Geralt block; tapping LT just before an enemy attacks results in a parry. We get that you might want to go all-out on attacking the ghouls and goblins, but you gotta use these if you want to survive. While the timing on parries is a bit trickier, it’s worth learning – a parry can often send an enemy crashing to the ground, leaving them open for an instant kill. Even without parrying, the block trigger is crucial for keeping large groups of enemies from tearing you to pieces.
Save the Quest for Last
It will serve you well to complete many side-quests and bounty missions during your journey, to earn both experience and money. But don’t get overwhelmed by the sheer amount of content in here; if you want to push ahead in the story, and feel strong enough to do so, go for it. Most of the quests are available to play in the endgame, and the few aren’t will alert you before they become unavailable.
Upgrade the Roach Coach
Roach is Geralt’s faithful-but-skittish horse. You’ll use him a lot, mostly to traverse the absurdly large environment. He’s also upgradeable, and when you have the money to spare, you should spend it on your horse. Upgrading his saddle bags lets you carry more items, and blinders keep Roach from getting too scared when enemies are around, making him useful for riding into battle like a one-man cavalry.
There’s so much more to explore on your own – things like the dialogue trees and branching storylines. But those are best left for you to decide (especially because there’s no wrong way to do it). The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is available now for Xbox One, and it’s already shaping up to be one of the biggest, best games of 2015.