Blood and Wine is the second and final expansion for The Witcher 3, the last game in the Witcher trilogy from Polish developer’s CD Projekt RED. While only an expansion to an enormous base game that is The Witcher 3, Blood and Wine feels like a full game; adding an entire new area with countless hours of content available. Continuing in the footsteps of the base game, Blood and Wine serves as a fantastic addition to the franchise with a gripping narrative and spectacular mystery.
The DLC acts as a sort of send-off for Witcher Geralt of Rivia with a story of betrayal and love in the visually stunning country of Toussaint. With endless stretches of vineyards and a picturesque, captivating landscape straight out of southern Italy. Everyone and everything seems to be about wine this time, even going to the point of Geralt owning a headquarters on a vineyard as a sort of summer home to Kaer Morhen’s harsh winters. A perfect small sum of land for Geralt to settle down on, maybe even Ciri will visit sometime.
This vibrant new setting, with a delightful and brighter colour scheme than previous regions, comes with a colourful assortment of characters and quests. With an upbeat and rosy attitude (probably due to all the wine) the townsfolk of Toussaint are as bright as the countryside and as pompous as the royalty. The addition of a surly, sarcastic Geralt is a great contrast against the tone of Toussaint. The peacefulness of this region is a nice change of pace from the war torn Velen or the harsh brutality of Skellige. This air of tranquility makes the main quest so important, you are fighting to keep Toussaint safe and free but with fear spreading through the country the Duchess Anna Henrietta of the southern Kingdom of Toussaint has summoned Geralt to solve the crime, digging up the dirt and hidden secrets of the rich country. A culprit has been leaving bodies in its wake, the threatening darkness dubbed ‘The Beast of Beauclair’, seeming to be untouchable and disappear into thin air. Monsters and men clash along the road, with new foes to fight and love to find.
More customization options have been added so to better alter both Geralt and Roach to your own preference. Armour dyes now allow you to create the fabulous Geralt you always dreamed of to match that goatee mullet haircut. New system management to inventory and additional mutations add a nice finish to the overall game, perfect for the new game plus playthrough from the beginning. These mutations have added on more skill slots and unlock more powerful options. With an all new level cap of 100 the bar has been raised, with more powerful armor sets and weapons to match (not to mention an entire new Gwent deck to collect). These changes have given The Witcher 3 a nice new level of depth, feeling closer than ever to being perfect (ignoring all bugs and small issues).
Blood and Wine gives you more of what makes this game so great, enriching content and quests to waste countless hours on. With an all new world to explore and news beasts to slay put your steel and silver to the test and take the final plunge with Geralt in this fabulous continuation of fantasy role playing (even though Roach still meanders around like a headless chicken.)
Developer: CD Projekt RED
Publisher: CD Projekt
Platforms: Windows PC, PS4, Xbox One (Reviewed on PC)
A review copy was provided by the developers.