Games

6 Games to Play After Watching Netflix’s “The Witcher” (That Aren’t Witcher Games)

If you were obsessed with The Witcher on Netflix, the number one video game I recommend to you is The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. That’s probably obvious. Both the Netflix show and CD Projekt’s Witcher video game series follow the story of the hit fantasy novels by Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski. They center on the monster-slaying adventures of Geralt in a world of politics, sorcery, and fantastical monsters.

There are a few reasons I recommend the third game in the series, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, the most:

  1. It’s the biggest game in the series, with open world exploration that truly immerses you in a gorgeous fantasy world.
  2. It’s the only one of the games to feature Yennefer and Ciri, two of the main characters in the books and the Netflix series.
  3. It’s the most recent, so the graphics hold up the best.
  4. It has the most accessible gameplay and controls, feeling just as challenging as the first games but much more intuitive to play.

But what if you’re already a huge Witcher fan and need something new to try? For instance, I played The Witcher 3 long before the Netflix show came out. While that didn’t stop me from picking it up again after watching Henry Cavill jump into the role of Geralt, I still thought it would be fun to explore other video games worth trying if you enjoyed the show.

Here are the top six games I would recommend to Witcher fans!

6. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Dragonborn facing a dragon in SkyrimSkyrim is the number one open-world role-playing game I recommend to everyone. Some may prefer the storytelling in games like The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt and Horizon Zero Dawn, and I respect that — I like those games for their narratives too. But to me, Skyrim is the perfect open-world RPG for its ability to place your unique little character in the middle of a vast, beautiful, breathing world and just set you loose.

You can do whatever you want in Skyrim. If you want to hunt dragons, you can do that. If you want to become an assassin, there’s a secret club for that. If you want to master the art of wielding magic, you can literally go to school for that. And if you want to get married and furnish a huge house, that’s part of the game, too. Everything you do builds into a role-playing experience that’s truly unique to you.

That’s why, if you liked The Witcher show for its huge world and incredible experiences, Skyrim could give you all the adventure you’re looking for.

5. Horizon Zero Dawn

Aloy drawing her bow to shoot a machine in Horizon Zero DawnIn my mind, Horizon Zero Dawn is one of the best games ever released, and certainly it deserves a place of honor among PlayStation 4 exclusives. This open-world game is set in a futuristic world where people live in tribes, battling against ancient machines in a decaying world where wilderness has taken over again. You play as a redheaded heroine named Aloy, who wants answers to the history of society and the animal-like machines who try to kill everyone with blood in their veins.

Though the story and protagonist are much different than The Witcher‘s, what I think some Witcher fans will appreciate is the gorgeous open world Horizon offers. It’s something unique and truly beautiful to explore, with challenging fights to be had along the road.

4. The Elder Scrolls Online

ESO character standing in front of dramatic landscapeI know I already recommended Skyrim, but if you want to play a similar game with friends or other loved ones, The Elder Scrolls Online is a great choice. It’s the MMO version of Elder Scrolls games, featuring the same huge world with factions of different fantasy races at war with one another. And here, that war is even more pronounced, as you create a character based on not just race, but also alliance — and that determines how and where you start the game. So if you’re into The Witcher for the politics, ESO has some more for you.

3. The Wolf Among Us

Wolf Among Us BigbyThis is a different choice, but what I love about Telltale’s The Wolf Among Us is its gruff protagonist, Bigby Wolf. Based on Bill Willingham’s Fables comic book series, Wolf Among Us is like a noir detective story set in a world of familiar fairytale characters, including Snow White, Beauty and the Beast, and Bluebeard. Bigby — of Big Bad Wolf fame — is a disgruntled private eye trying to solve a murder case. The world itself may not feel too similar to The Witcher‘s, but it’s definitely got the detail and fantasy feel. Still, the biggest draw for Witcher fans is this: If you liked Geralt as a smart, tough anti-hero, Bigby could fit the bill for you next.

2. Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor

Talion slicing off an orc's head in Shadow of MordorMiddle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor is an open world action game set in the world of Tolkien, in which you explore as a wraith-corrupted Ranger named Talion. There are a couple of things that remind me of The Witcher here.

The first is that Talion reminds me of Geralt in some ways. Like the witcher, he’s a badass anti-hero, who’s revived from death and seeks to avenge the deaths of his wife and son. Due to his bonding with the Elf  Lord Celebrimbor, he uses wraith powers during fights, along with more traditional melee swordplay — also similar to Geralt’s mash-up of sword fights and magic.

The other thing that reminds me of The Witcher is the vast, dark world. I actually think Shadow of Mordor has a much darker atmosphere than The Witcher, as Talion fights orcs in a desolate landscape. That’s why if you’re into that kind of thing, slaying orcs might be the best way to spend your next gaming hours.

1. Red Dead Redemption 2

Arthur Morgan entering town on his horse in Red Dead Redemption 2If your favorite thing about The Witcher show was Henry Cavill grunting and swearing as Geralt, Red Dead Redemption 2 might be for you. This game has so much going for it: a beautiful open world, hunting to do, horses to tame and ride, a camp full of crazy characters, and a riveting story.

But the best part for Witcher fans might just be the playable character Arthur Morgan, an Old West gunslinger trying to redeem himself while still living a life of crime. It’s up to you how you play him; you can make him a brutal killer and thief, threatening everyone who crosses his path, or you can play him as a brooding man trying to change for the better. Personally, I loved having him whistle and holler hello at the people he passed on horseback, although they weren’t always so friendly in return. I wanted him to be a man ready to change, just like Geralt with his gruff exterior but mushy insides.

In short, if you’re looking for a protagonist who deals in moral grey areas like Geralt, you’ll find exactly what you’re looking for in Arthur Morgan.

What games would you recommend to Witcher fans? There are so many options. I went with the protagonist and open-world RPG thing, but let me know if there’s another direction you would take!

— Ashley

 

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