Like us, you might have put hundreds upon hundreds of hours into The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, taking Geralt back and forth on adventures from the lush environments of White Orchard, all the way to the war-torn areas around the decrepit Novigrad. Or maybe-like myself, you’ve completed The Witcher 3 numerous times over, choosing different paths and romantic partners for Geralt every time.
The fact is, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is such a dense, detailed game, that even the most experienced players won’t have found every secret developers CD Projekt Red buried within the game. Chances are, there’s a fair few things you’ve missed while playing The Witcher 3, and there are also some tales from the developers themselves surrounding the making of the game, all of which we’ve combined here to reveal some of the games biggest secrets.
Iorveth’s Quest in The Witcher 3 Was Cut by CD Projekt
Remember Iorveth, the charismatic, often-antagonising elf from The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings? The loveable rogue was a fan favorite upon release, and he’s been cemented as one of the best Witcher characters over the past five years or so. That being said, Iorveth is entirely absent in The Witcher 3, leading fans to speculate for months on end as to where he was.
It turns out, as CD Projekt’s Philipp Webber revealed on the official CD Projekt RED forums, that Iorveth actually was part of The Witcher 3, but his quest was cut during development for multiple reasons. Webber explains that Iorveth had an active role in the game, and as development for The Witcher 3 went on, it wasn’t a quest line that CD Projekt could simply replace, so they cut it entirely.
It looks like we’ll never know where Iorveth is during the events of The Witcher 3, or what the developers had planned for the elf, unless CD Projekt ever openly comments on the matter.
Yennefer Provided Quite the Localisation Challenge
Localisation isn’t often thought about by fans, especially with a western role-playing game like The Witcher 3, but it can be quite a tough job. NoClip’s excellent 2017 documentary series on The Witcher 3 revealed that getting the game localised for an Egyptian audience was a monumental task, given the strict rules as to what can and can’t be depicted in visual media.
In the episode around localisation of The Witcher 3 just above, the team at CD Projekt reveal that they ran into problems in the very first scene of the game, wheen Yennefer is shown naked as Geralt gets out of the now-iconic bathtub. The Egyptian guidelines dictated that Yennefer must be wearing underwear during the scene, and so the team at CD Projekt had to hastily slap some underwear onto Yennefer. As you can see in NoClip’s video, the nudity popping up in the first scene meant that it was impossible to miss.
Radovid’s Assassination Quest was Left Untranslated on Release
Another detail in the very same episode of the NoClip documentary series on The Witcher 3 was an interesting tidbit on the Assassination of King Radovid quest line, which Geralt can undertake with Roche, Thaler, and Djikstra, culminating in the mad king being killed.
The localisation team at CD Projekt revealed that the final quest for the entire story sequence was actually left untranslated for a few select regions around the world, as they’d entirely overlooked it during the extensive and tough development period of The Witcher 3. Thankfully they were able to patch it almost immediately, and it’s highly likely that no one even noticed, given how deep into the game that particular quest takes place.
Ciri Teasing Details of Cyberpunk 2077
Very late in the story of The Witcher 3, when Geralt finally regroups with Ciri after a tough trek around half the world, she brings him up to speed on where she’s been over the past few years.
Ciri has the ability to leap through space and time itself, escaping to a variety of different worlds in order to elude her Wild Hunt pursuers. However one of these worlds in particular should catch the attention of eagle-eyed fans, as Ciri mentions that “everyone has their own flying vehicle”.
If we look at this through the scope of what we know about Cyberpunk 2077, CD Projekt Red’s mysterious, upcoming game, it seems very likely that Ciri has visited the world in which the futuristic game takes place. Is there a chance we could see Ciri in Cyberpunk 2077?
Does Blood and Wine Negate the Bad Ending of The Witcher 3?
The first time I completed The Witcher 3, I was unfortunately met with just about the worst ending possible, as Ciri had apparently died in her fight to erase the White Frost, and Geralt had seemingly succumbed to a horde of monsters and beasts in the swamps of Velen.
However, the release of the massive Blood and Wine expansion in 2016 appears to negate the events of the worst ending, effectively pushing it out of canon. The expansion certainly seems to take place after the events of the main game, as Ciri, Triss, or Yennefer can visit Geralt in his home at the conclusion of the expansion. This points to Geralt avoiding his demise in the bad ending, and securing a future for himself in Corvo Bianco.
The In-Game Picture of CD Projekt Red
In the YouTube video just below, an explorer using a PC mod puts the camera of the game into free roam mode, and manages to teleport Geralt to the top of the highest mountain in the Blood and Wine region of The Witcher 3.
From here, the player approached what looks like a painting canvas on the top of the mountain, only to discover that it’s a photo of every CD Projekt Red employee that worked on both The Witcher 3 and the Blood and Wine expansion. A nice tribute to the development team, and certainly a well-hidden easter egg.
Finding the Witcher 3 Ghost Ship off the Coast of Skellige
Another easter egg that’s been found by The Witcher 3 community is the ghost ship featured just below, which appears just off the coast of Skellige between the hours of 1 am and 3 am, on most nights.
However while numerous players have reported seeing the ghost ship, no one has apparently been able to board the Flying Dutchman look-alike, as the ship will disappear if you get too close to it.
You Meet the Hearts of Stone Villain at the Beginning of The Witcher 3
Some players might not have ever got round to playing the excellent Hearts of Stone expansion for The Witcher 3, given that the base game on its own can take upwards of one hundred hours to complete.
But if you do happen to venture into the main quest line for Hearts of Stone, then you might recognise the villainous Gaunter O’Dimm. It turns out that Geralt has already met O’Dimm hundreds of hours earlier, at the very beginning of the story of The Witcher 3. Remember in the Lilac and Gooseberries quest, when Geralt has to ask around the tavern in White Orchard after Yennefer? One of the NPCs you meet during this section is none other than Gaunter O’Dimm, who would go on to be the villain of the first major expansion for the game.
Did CD Projekt Red know that O’Dimm was going to be the villain in Hearts of Stone from the start, or was this a decision made later?
Finding Tyrion Lannister’s Dead Body in The Witcher 3
Here’s one for all the many millions of Game of Thrones viewers out there. If we remember back to season one of the hit TV show, where Tyrion Lannister becomes imprisoned in the 'sky cell' of The Eyrie, the character finds himself in a prison cell with a missing wall that leads to a huge drop.
It turns out you can find a cell that doesn’t look dissimilar to the sky cell in Game of Thrones, in one of the islands dotted around the Skellige map. There’s a corpse in this very same cell in Skellige, which could point to Tyrion having met his demise in the cell.
And that’s it for our round up of hidden secrets and details that you didn’t know about The Witcher 3. The game is monumental in every sense of the word, and there’s no doubt that players will be finding hidden details and secrets buried in its world for years to come.
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