The Witcher 3 was both a critical and a commercial success. For proof, look no further than the fact that it has managed to sell more than 20 million copies, which is a remarkable figure that cannot be claimed by more than a very small number of titles. Under these circumstances, it is no wonder that there is much interest in a fourth Witcher game, which may or may not be called The Witcher 4. Here is what we know about the hypothetical fourth installment in The Witcher series:
We Can Expect to See a Fourth Witcher Game
For starters, while there was some serious uncertainty over the issue for some time, it has been confirmed that CD Projekt Red will be making follow-ups to not just The Witcher series but also the Cyberpunk 2077 series. Apparently, this was motivated by financial considerations. This makes sense because it would be foolish for a studio to pass up on a potential cash cow, particularly since a stable source of income is one of the biggest concerns for media companies. Furthermore, it should be mentioned that Netflix is set to launch a show based on the same source material in December of 2019. Said show may or may not become a success, but if it manages to become a success, that would further increase the incentive for CD Projekt Red to make more Witcher games.
It Seems to Be Coming Sooner Rather than Later
Currently, CD Projekt Red has said very little about the hypothetical fourth installment in The Witcher series. This is unsurprising because it is focused on its next AAA title, which will be Cyberpunk 2077. As a result, CD Projekt Red has plenty of incentive to remain silent on something that could erode the momentum of the upcoming title even if it and the hypothetical fourth installment in The Witcher series belong to different genres. Having said that, it seems that there is reason to believe that the next Witcher game will be coming sooner rather than later. Essentially, a forum moderator has stated that the studio is still planning to release its next AAA title by 2021, which is no more than a short while into the future. Theoretically, this could be a title in some new series that has never been mentioned before. However, since we know that CD Projekt Red wants alternating releases for The Witcher series and the Cyberpunk 2077 series, it seems very likely that this is the not so hypothetical fourth installment in The Witcher series.
It Won’t Be Called The Witcher 4
With that said, it seems likely that the fourth installment won’t be called The Witcher 4. In short, the issue is that the first three Witcher games constituted a trilogy, meaning that calling the fourth installment The Witcher 4 would create a false sense of continuity that could alienate some of the interested individuals. By this point, it should be clear that Geralt of Rivia won’t be returning as the protagonist of the fourth Witcher game. He may or may not show up in said title, but even if he shows up, it seems reasonable to speculate that his role will be very minimal so that he won’t overshadow his successor. After all, since CD Projekt Red intends to start over with a new story with a new protagonist, it would not a good idea in the long run for it to make too much use of Geralt as a crutch. Otherwise, it could wind up with a bad compromise that pleases no one but instead alienates everyone, thus bringing about the worst of all possible worlds.
Its Setting Is Not Known to Us
Speaking of which, it hasn’t been revealed when and where the fourth installment in The Witcher series will be set. Since CD Projekt Red has made the choice that Geralt’s story has come to a conclusion with The Witcher 3, this means that they have a lot of leeway when it comes to their next release in the same series. Perhaps they will set it sometime and someplace close to the previous Witcher games for the purpose of facilitating cameos, which can be problematic if overused but can make for excellent fan-service when employed with a sense of caution. However, it is also possible that they will choose not just some other time but also some other place, thus enabling them to explore new possibilities for that sense of new excitement.
As for whether CD Projekt Red can be trusted with such a huge jump, it seems reasonable to say that they have managed to earn a measure of trust. Certainly, their titles in The Witcher series have seen remarkable improvements of various sorts over the course of their initial trilogy, which will be clear to anyone who compares the first release with the third release. As such, while it is possible that the studio would mess up the transition into something new, its previous accomplishments make such an assessment more pessimistic than what the evidence would suggest.
Of course, this is assuming that CD Projekt Red would want to make such a jump. Although its previous games in The Witcher series have tread much ground, it would be an exaggeration to say that they have exhausted all of the storytelling possibilities contained therein. As such, it would not be a loss to see a new story with new characters set in familiar settings.
Summed up, chances are good that interested individuals are going to see a fourth installment in The Witcher series in the not too distant future. However, it is important to remember that these expectations are by no means set in stone, meaning that they should not be 100 percent confident that they are bound to come to pass. It is perfectly possible for the relevant statements to have been misinterpreted, thus making for a more optimistic scenario than what is actually the case. Likewise, it is perfectly possible for plans to change. In any case, those who would like to see more content in The Witcher series might want to start paying attention for further news once Cyberpunk 2077 comes out because that will be the right time for CD Projekt Red to start preparing for its next big release.