What Parents Should Know About ‘The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt’

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Here’s what you should know about The Witcher 3.

1. Genre
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is an action roleplaying game. Its fantasy story is set in a large open world, with a main storyline to discover and lots of side quests for players to take on as well.

You play a character in third-person view who explores the beautiful and expansive world through day and night, sometimes on horseback, and fights enemies, some of which are fantastical, with a range of different weapons. You face choices that will change the story. Dynamic systems mean that different things will happen when the game world is in day or night time, and even that the main character’s beard will grow.

There is no multiplayer, as the focus is on the single-player story experience.

This is the first game in the Witcher series to have an open world. With that and its fantasy theme, The Witcher 3 is similar to Bethesda’s role-playing games like Oblivion and Skyrim, but unlike in those games, where players can customize their avatar, the protagonist has a set name and personality.

2. Story
The Witcher 3 continues on from The Witcher 2. Main character Geralt wants to eliminate the Wild Hunt. At the same time, the Empire of Nilfgaard is invading the Northern Kingdoms.

3. Developer
The games in the Witcher series are developed by a Polish developer called CD Projekt RED.

4. Format
The Witcher 3 is available for PC, PS4, and Xbox One, and costs between £40/$55 and £45/$60 depending on platform.

5. Duration and Difficulty
With its open world and dozens of quests, The Witcher 3 could keep players busy for 100 hours.

It has multiple difficulty settings, with the highest aimed at those with lots of experience with roleplaying games.

6. Ratings
In the UK and Europe, PEGI rates The Witcher 3 as only appropriate for those aged 18 and older for extreme violence, violence towards defenseless people, and strong language.

The GRA expands on its PEGI details by explaining that the game “features very frequent gory violence,” with Geralt able to “dismember, decapitate, disembowel, and cut his enemies in half during game-play combat.” There are also gory scenes such as “a raven burrowing into a man’s eye socket and bursting from the back of his shattered skull, a man’s face melting and sizzling after being struck by a fire spell, men being gored by bears and more.”

The violence towards defenseless people includes “people being bound to and burnt at the stake, with graphic detail, and a baby being thrown into a hot oven–though it is later seen to be unharmed.”

Strong language includes frequent use of the “f” word and occasional use of the “c” word.

Throughout the game, Geralt can have sex with several different women, and, while “the couples’ genitals are not visible during intercourse,” “there are other moments of full nudity.” There are also “several instances where sexual violence is graphically implied,” for example one scene in which “dead women are strewn around a bedroom, some of them naked.”

In the US, the ESRB rates The Witcher 3 as M for Mature, with content descriptors for “Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Nudity, Strong Language, Strong Sexual Content, Use of Alcohol.” The ESRB also mentions sequences that “depict females’ breasts and buttocks,” and a side quest that sees Geralt play a drinking game, with characters “depicted drunk and/or passed out”.

Lobby group Common Sense Media rated The Witcher 2 as “not for kids” and will likely rate The Witcher 3 the same.

7. Themes
While The Witcher 3 is set in a fantasy world, with an army of demonic invaders and a focus on mythical creatures and magic use, the story does cover recognizable themes such as political issues and interpersonal relationships.

8. Why people play
Players like the games in the Witcher series because of the focus on storytelling and characters, and the world in which those things are based. The ability to explore the open world and to make choices that determine how the story plays out means that players get a rich experience that feels personal to them.

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19 thoughts on “What Parents Should Know About ‘The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt’

    1. I’ve played about… Six hours and have not ran into any nudity or sex while playing. HOWEVER, in the very first opening schematic, there is nudity. Although you can manually skip it, I do not think there is a way to automatically skip it. The schematics progress the story and explain why you are doing things during the main quest line. It truly does act, and play as a game built soley for adults.

    2. The moment you worry about a nipple more than you worry about gory limbs flying and beaten down children and people being burned alive, I assume you are a bigoted bigot.

  1. Why do they make sex scenes and nudity? There are special places in internet for those things. How can I play the game, if there is always a chance that someone (most likely a kid) will come into my room. Gore is acceptable but not sex and nudity.

  2. Often times people say gore and profanity is acceptable to them but not sex and nudity. It’s because gore and profanity rarely cause people to get addicted to gore and profanity. But sex and nudity is ten times more likely to get a wider range of people of any age hooked.

    1. I doubt people get a porn addiction from seeing a pair of pixelated tits on a computer screen by accident. And addicted to profanity? Like getting addicted to saying gosh-darnit? People will unavoidably come across sexual themes in their lives. It takes a lot to get hooked on these things to. Taking care of ones mental health and physical well-being usually helps avoiding any addictions that trying to live in some kind of self made bubble.

      1. I’m with Whocaresaboutmyname on this one. Yes, gore and violence are more tolerable than sex in a video game. I work in the field of addiction and he is right, depictions of nudity and sex are much more likely to form an addiction than violence. I am not condoning violence, do not read more into my comment. I am saying that I would not want my children to walk in while I was playing a game and my character is having sex with someone, pixelated or not.

        1. You are afraid someone might get addicted to sex because of a pixelated sex scene but have no beef when your children run in while you literally chop of somebodys head? I surely hope you are american, would proof my belief that you are out of your minds. (Sidenote: Addicted to porn by some polygon breasts? Can’t believe somebody would be serious about that.)

          1. Like most folks, I would imagine that you have never worked in the field of addiction. You are right, if the only breasts you ever saw were a few on a video game, most likely you wouldn’t have a problem. However, if you are already dealing with that specific addiction, mainly that of pornography, than it would not be healthy at all to see naked breasts, polygons or not. Yes,to alleviate your wondering, I am an American and proud of it!

          2. So you are saying because there are people with an existing porn addiction, the developer of this game should not have included a few sex scenes? Well I guess then we should close down Las Vegas, ban guns, alcohol, unhealthy food…

            Your argument has no logic and you didn’t really need to tell me you are american, the fact that violence is no problem for you while nudity is, already proved that. Even if I have to repeat myself: The fact that you would rather let your children watch how a human is brutally murdered and mutilated then two people having sex is wrong on so many levels, I don’t even know where to begin.

            But let’s try anyway:
            Sex = totally normal thing, your children should learn as much as possible about this topic so they can have an enjoyable and safe sex life when they are adults.

            Violence = A despicable act of inhumanity, that your children should be kept away from as much as possible. Something they should not condone as an adult, let alone engage in themselfs.

            But who am I talking to, you people buy your children guns when they are born and let kids shoot with automatic weapons but freak out when 15yr olds even think about sex. So I guess the meaning of violence is lost on you.

          3. I think you need to go back and slowly read the thread again. No one was saying that the developer of the game should not have included sex in the game. The comments were based on the fact that some folks do not like there young children being exposed to sex in a game, period. The comments about violence were also addressed when I said that I was not condoning violence either. It seems that you just want to point out that you have an opinion that Americans are messed up because we have a culture that values personal protection,such as Switzerland. Again, look at where this forum is, Geek Dad. We talk a lot about the games we play and how they can impact our children, either in a good fashion or not. Merry Christmas to you!

          4. Well I feel the need to cite yourself then: “Yes, gore and violence are more tolerable than sex in a video game.” I merely took this sentence and exaggerated it to make clear what you are actually saying. And yes, of course you are right, I think the USA are utterly messed up when it comes to sex & violence (Even though I want to point out that I love a lot of other things about the USA, but that’s not valid here).

            And the simple fact is: Your children should not come in contact with Witcher 3. I really don’t need Geek Dad to tell me this, and neither do you. It’s a 100% adult game and I would surely not play this in front of my children (but because of violence and not because of nudity) or let them play it. And to tell you the full truth: I would rather have them watch porn then decapitating somebody.

            Even if you don’t condone violence, you still find it more suitable for a child then nudity. Tell me how this is not messed up? So or so, I’m not going to get through to you, I had this argument to often with no result now to know that. Just a last note: Don’t compare the USA to Switzerland, I live next to the latter and I have a lot of Swiss friends, and believe me if I tell you, the USA and Switzerland are worlds apart, not only in ground distance.

  3. Considering that sex is something that is SUPPOSED to be private between a married couple (a man and a woman–marriage didn’t need to be redefined), I’d say it’s something to be more wary of than gore or violence, not that I’m condoning either of those things. Or profanity, for that matter. The vast majority of profanity are insults referring to parts of the body, sexual acts, or things that come from the human body. Can’t condone alcohol either, seeing as it reduces inhibitions, causing us to do things we would never do sober, and for many families, results in fights, broken homes, and more.

    As far as children needing to learn about sex as much as possible, I’m pretty sure that’s the job of the parents to verbally (not by a live demonstration) teach them. Not a video game, porn, or what have you. Not to even mention that the primary purpose of sex is procreation, in which most, if not all depictions of it in various media are for the purpose of pleasure, not procreation. Doesn’t mean that there can’t be pleasure in sex, but that’s not all there is to it.

    As far as nudity is concerned, we wear clothes for a reason, and it’s not just because of things like protection from the elements of nature. If it isn’t appropriate out in public, in what way is it appropriate in the home?

    1. i agree. honestly, i rather have my child play a gory game. i know he is not going to go out amd kill some one, but if he sees stuff like people having sex, he is going to want to do it himself or do innapropriate things at school. even worse, get a girl pregnant. Honestly humans are more likely to act sexually than violently so i would rather have him kill some bad guys than his character make love to some random he became friends with benefits with.

      1. It really baffles me how sexually suppressed the States still are. Of course you hear about that stuff here in Europe, but you can’t quite grasp what that means until your read stuff like “the primary purpose of sex is procreation”. I’m going to follow up on this by researching how many percent of Americans represent this view.

        Some of you are obviously afraid that your kids might want to have sex. That’s really bad for you, since they are going to have sex, no matter what you want. You should really consider telling your son about birth control though, or buy him a pack of Trojans right away, otherwise he might indeed “get a girl pregnant”.

  4. Randomly ran across this article. I’ve played Witcher 2 and I’m playing 3 now, for the record. It’s one of the best open worlds I’ve played, and so far the story has been very well crafted. Respectfully, regardless of the various opinions on violence or sex, the Witcher series IS an adult game. No debate. There’s no way to opt/cut out of sex scenes or nudity where they exist as part of the story line, the random dialogue from characters/NPCs can include a good deal of cussing, and characters or enemies end up violently dismembered or beheaded. I think it takes a very accurate look at violence during war, politics, racism, and a fairly accurate perspective on how cruel people can be. But IMHO it is certainly not appropriate for children or young teenagers. If parents are even remotely on the fence about it, far better just to skip it for now.

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