Video game developer CD Projekt RED is far from done with The Wizard franchise, recently confirming that several more titles are on the way, including the first in a new sorcerer trilogy. There has been discussion about the next installment in the sorcerer franchise already, with much speculation surrounding Ciri and the adventures she might have after The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. It may seem like the perfect next step, but CDPR should consider setting the new trilogy in an entirely different era, taking cues from some of Netflix’s upcoming live-action projects.
That’s true The Wizard it has always been Ciri’s story at heart, much of it told from the perspective of Geralt of Rivia, her father figure. But now that she has fulfilled her destiny by fighting White Frost, it might be time for the franchise to move away from her story and allow her to have her happy, neutral, or tragic ending, depending on the canonical ending. Instead, the developer should consider dedicating a saga to exploring the history of the Continent and the major events that shaped it. He’s already doing it in smaller ways, like with the Spokko mobile game. The Witcher: Monster Slayer. Now, you need to follow Netflix’s lead and do it on a larger scale.
Games can learn from Netflix’s creative freedoms
Netflix has released several titles that make up its Witcher World collection. It started with the anime movie. The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf, which explored the events leading up to the fall of Kaer Morhen. Now, his next live action series, The Witcher: Origin of Blood goes back even further and explores the aftermath of the cataclysmic event known as the Conjunction of the Spheres and how this influenced the creation of the world’s first Witcher.
Among the broader fan base, there is much debate about the merits of Netflix’s live-action adaptation and the liberties it has taken with the established tradition of Andrzej Sapkowski’s novels. But what many may not fully appreciate is that the Netflix series isn’t afraid to take the story and its characters in new directions. Some of those attempts may not have the desired impact, but the important thing is that those attempts were made.
CD Projekt RED has taken its fair share of liberties with various characters in Sapkowski’s work, including the appearance, personality, and even abilities of Geralt and his close friends and allies. The developer, however, has shown that he can make those changes respecting the source material, which he had to do because his sorcerer The story is a continuation of Geralt, Ciri and Yennefer’s journey rather than a reinvention of it. Now that that story is over, the developer must continue to build their version of the Continent just like Netflix is doing.
What The Witcher: Blood Origin offers
With origin of bloodNetflix takes viewers back in time, 1,200 years before the events of The Wizard, when elves ruled the continent and magic and monsters were still new to the landscape. The show will introduce a host of new characters, each belonging to a different elven clan: Éile, Scian, Fjall, the chief druid Balor, and even someone who appears to be another Ancient Blood bearer, Seanchaí.
As said before, it’s a bold but admirable attempt. There will certainly be passionate fans who end up loathing the final product, but there will also be many fans or newcomers who thoroughly enjoy it. No matter the outcome, it will have added to the complexities of the continent that Netflix has brought to the screen. CD Projekt RED, which has beautifully adapted Sapkowski’s work across games, needs to do just that. That means finding a space to create with much more freedom, away from the restrictions of Geralt and Ciri’s story.
The Witcher games have a lot to explore
There is a perfect space for that freedom within the thousands of years between the Conjunction of the Spheres and the events of Sapkowski’s first novel in the series, The last wish. There are also several hundred years between the novel and the creation of the first Witcher. In CDPR canon alone, there are a huge number of potential stories involving Witchers.
There’s the Brute of Lyria, who slaughtered 200 women and children in Lyria, Rivia, and Spalla before being killed by fan-favorite vampire Detlaff. There is the Day of Fire, which led to the collapse of the Zerrikanian royal family and the Manticore School. There is also the Six Years War that took place between Cintra and Temeria. Or, the trilogy could touch on the events that seemingly helped shape Ciri’s destiny: Falka’s rebellion. All of these stories and more could be incorporated into the adventures of a new Witcher, and it’s enough to fill a trilogy. That’s not to mention any of the major events that define the entire history of the titular monster-slaying profession, from the Order of Warlocks to the School of the Wolf.
None of this is to say that CD Projekt RED necessarily has to deviate from the source material as much as Netflix projects do. The video game developer has shown that she knows how to successfully build stories within the established lore. Now is the time to use that tradition in more creative ways. The schools, some of the historical facts of the Continent and more originated in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt and the games that preceded it, so there’s clearly a desire to expand this unique universe. CDPR should take notes from Netflix and use a new era to do it in a much more engaging way.