The Witcher will be making a return to video game consoles as CD Projekt Red announced a partnership with Epic Games to develop a new Witcher on the Unreal Engine 5, teasing a new saga will begin for the franchise.
The Witcher is one of the most popular fantasy franchises both in video games and out. Created by author Andrzej Sapkowski, The Witcher series spans a number of books and was turned into a series of video games where players step into the shoes of Geralt of Rivia, a Witcher who embarks on quests to kill deadly monsters. The franchise has also spawned a few TV adaptations, including the recent Netflix series starring Henry Cavill as Geralt.
Since The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings, the games have run on CD Projekt Red’s own REDengine to create the vast open world and choice-based story, but that will change with the latest game as it will be developed on the Unreal Engine 5. In a blog post on The Witcher website, CD Projekt Red said:
“This is an exciting moment as we’re moving from REDengine to Unreal Engine 5, beginning a multi-year strategic partnership with Epic Games. It covers not only licensing, but technical development of Unreal Engine 5, as well as potential future versions of Unreal Engine, where relevant. We’ll closely collaborate with Epic Games’ developers with the primary goal being to help tailor the engine for open-world experiences.”
The partnership between CD Projekt Red and Epic Games will be one to further develop gaming technology. CD Projekt Red’s CTO Paweł Zawodny elaborated further on the partnership going forward between the two developers, saying “One of the core aspects of our internal RED 2.0 Transformation is a much stronger focus on technology, and our cooperation with Epic Games is based on this principle. From the outset, we did not consider a typical licensing arrangement; both we and Epic see this as a long-term, fulfilling tech partnership. 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. 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!”
The next installment of The Witcher will not be exclusive to the Epic Games Store and be available for the current and next-gen consoles. A timeframe for the game’s release was not given, but the release date will likely be some way off as CD Projekt Red will have to build it from the ground up on Unreal Engine 5 and are still working on the much maligned Cyberpunk 2077 and its future DLC.
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