The Witcher was a little played but highly praised 2007 RPG based on a book series by Polish author Andzej Sapkowski. The Witcher 2: Assassin of Kings is a much more hyped title that is expected to do far better than its predecessor. The game follows almost directly on events on the first games meaning the first few hours are disconerting if you're unfamiliar with the material. Without giving too much away the Witcher Geralt is imprisoned for the assassination of King Folest after he successfuly squelched an uprising. There's four possible openings to the 30 plus hour game, a variety of endings and as is the de facto with RPGs these days multiple play throughs are necessary if you want to see and explore all of the content.
The game looks and sounds superb. It's also violent and full of sex. The game is very demanding and all but the latest games machines will struggle with if everrything is cranked to max. Unfortunately the combat and keyboard controls are clunky and The Witcher 2 has a bizzare learning curve whereby things start off incredibly difficult and get easier as you progress. There's also definite evidence of consolitis - the game can be played with a controler and quick time events make an unnecessary and unwelcome appearance.
These are really just niggles though. The Witcher 2 deserves to be played by any gamer who enjoys experiencing a fully realised world that asks players to make choices that are shades of grey rather than black and white.
Buy or Rent: Buy
Game Play: 3/5
Replay Value: 4/5
Reviewed By: Bryan Collins