Several outlets globally have had the opportunity to go hands-on with a few hours of The Witcher 3’s new-gen update for PS5, Xbox Series X and PC.
The update, which launches on December 14th, brings ray-tracing, ambient occlusion, SSR, FSR and dynamic resolution features to PS5 and Xbox Series X with a choice of two modes – a ray-traced Quality mode in 30fps and a 60fps Performance mode. PS5 players will also benefit from haptic feedback and adaptive trigger support. PC players also will see upgrades including the aforementioned plus a new Ultra+ detail setting and more.
Eurogamer/Digital Foundry posted their comprehensive impressions, saying the update impressed them hugely in both the 60fps Performance and 30fps Ray-Traced modes, offering up solid framerates backed up by the implementation of AMD’s FSR 2.1 image reconstruction technology and a dynamic 4K resolution. Ray-tracing features on console include global illumination and ambient occlusion, which the website says is “transformative”, and goes even further on PC with ray-traced reflections added to the mix.
Unsurprisingly, the city centre of Novigrad reportedly still offers some challenges and causes potential dips below 60fps in the Performance mode on console, but there’s still time for things to be optimised further prior to and post-release. You can read the Digital Foundry impressions here.
IGN’s impressions were similarly positive, saying that the Performance mode makes the game feel “new” on console, and that the new quality-of-life improvements borne of community-made and internally developed mods added to the game to allow things like faster Sign casting and more cinematic cameras are a massive boon.
“Even if nothing fundamentally changes with The Witcher 3 after its next-gen update, the rough edges are now much, much smoother and the new creative changes offer a fresh enough take that newcomers and veterans alike will at least want to check out the changes in the update. There’s a good chance it might suck you back in for your second, or fifth playthrough” reads IGN’s article, which you can check out here.
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt’s new-gen update is totally free to existing owners of the game and is coming on December 14th to PS5, Xbox Series X|S and PC.