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Articles & Interviews on Thronebreaker

Articles & Interviews on Thronebreaker

I thought it might be good to have a thread dedicated to articles that provide information about GWENT's upcoming single player campaign Thronebreaker. Here are a few to start:
"It'll be a story told from the perspective of leaders, and this is a big challenge because we have to come up with a new way to introduce choices and a new way to introduce exploration, and how you solve sidequests and side activities," he explained. - interview at gamescom. - 15 hour long campaign with as much text as existed for the Witcher 3 DLC Hearts of Stone. :eek:

[April 16, 2018 update]

Gwent's single-player 'Thronebreaker' campaign has been delayed

I'll periodically update the OP from time to time. Feel free to discuss the articles and interviews, or post any new articles you see, but keep in mind that leaks are not welcomed here.
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Yesterday, we've got a new article related to Gwent and Thronebreaker by Famitsu in Japan.
Some interesting info picked up and translated an interview with Jakub Szamalek (principal writer on Gwent) into English .

-From presentation at Gamescom
  • Gwent Cards Artwork are created by illustrators, animators, visualeffect artists consisted of about 50 people.
-About Thronebreaker.
  • It takes place prior to TW3.
  • There'll be 5 variant maps.
  • As of now, it is planed that voiceact is recorded in 10 languages.
-Jakub Szamalek interview
Q: Please tell us your principle to create a story of Gwent.
A: Gwent should be an attractive game, first of all. Having said that, the story must be fitted to the game mechanism, so I always aim at a narrativity throughout gameplay. Based on that, Gwent itself requires to be ambitious as well. I bear in mind to make something suitable for the game quality, somthing that provides an exiciting moment. For that reason, I'd say some difficulty level of Gwent and thoughtful story are needed.

Q: Could you elaborate on "the story suitable for the game mechanism"?
A: For example, if you win against monsters, you get a reward. At this moment, a card game requires to negotiate what kind of reward you can get so that a player can feel like "I have to EARN something".

Q: You are principal writer on Gwent and senior writer on The Witcher 3. There is a difference of storytelling between RPG and cardgame, right?
A: Of course. Since we've got a cinematic scene in TW3, we can see what the person in the game think or feel with his(her) expressions or gestures. On the other hand, we don't adopt such expression methods in Gwent, so we need to complement in a different way. In Thronebreaker, we provide players with narrative methods for Meve's emotion etc.

Q: What is the most focused part on storytelling of Gwent?
A: In TW3, players live on their own skill as outsiders, while in Thronebreaker, you are a public figure as Queen Meve, which leads the troops. Thus, you have to make a decision how to handle the soldiers or moral dilemmas occurring in a conversation with farmers. You might face a betrayal as well. While thinking about the future, the story of Thronebreaker is drawn as to how to act as a leader and lead the troops,

Q: Please tell me why you employed the plot, such as "lead the troops".
A: When thinking about the mechanism of the game, I wanted the element like "command the units" from the beginning. When I was looking into the Witcher Universe, the existence of Queen was the most suitable for it.

Q: I guess the story campaign will be launched furthermore in the future. Is there any policies on deployment?
A: Thronebreaker featuring Northern Realms is the first story campaign of Gwent. On the other hand, we will focus on another factions in next year's new story campaign. Each episode, a story goes forward like a reminiscence by a narrator. In addition to it, the narrator's own story will be revealed throughout all campaigns.

Q: You mean, the world of TW3 is expanding steadily from now on?
A: That's right. The world based on the original novels by Andrzej Sapkowski will be further constructed.

Q: Now, "Gwent The Witcher Card Game" is spreading worldwide. What do you make of that?
A: Very grateful. As you know, Gwent initially started as a mini game in TW3. At first we expected that it should be OK, then the players went crazy than I imagined. And also they sent feedback demanding for standalone. Of course we needed to shore it up for an independent game. Although we've been developing through a trial and error, I think it is getting better now.

Q: What is the most important thing to construct the Withcer World?
A: Well...we've got the original novels by Andrzej Sapkowski in the first place, we must convey that essence of them firmly. His original novels have the characteristics, such as humor, rich-constructed-universe and mature relationships between the characters. Based on those things, we value the reproduction of "feeling" that you can understand if you touch the original. And also we bear in mind to provide the players with the scenario that you need to think firmly, not the scenario to make a decision easily.

Sorry for my English, but I hope you enjoy it! Cheers:)
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Thronebreaker impressions

So, this single-player campaign we've been blabbing on about, Gwent: Thronebreaker, how different could it be from the other card game solo modes, you might ask - well, as it turns out, very different. For starters, the mode (which is paid DLC) features a top-down RPG-like map view. This top-down environment shapes the experience into a completely different adventure containing side quests, action and consequence, environmental puzzles, and full voice acting. During the presentation, we get to see some gameplay in which the player gets to decide what kind of ruler he or she wants to be. You control Queen Meve, regent of the kingdoms of Lyria and Rivia, and get multiple choices when conversing with the townspeople. The conversation sections are very much like the visuals of a fully voiced, old school point and click dialogue, and give you multiple choices, all of which are remembered by NPCs and some impacting the people's perception of you as a ruler. The presenters inform us that the choices the player makes, here and from here onwards, a difference in the story as a whole.

In the story mode, you move through five different maps as Queen Meve, taking on side quests for materials or loyalty. The main story is a dark one, written by some of the writers of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, and takes place during a tough time before Geralt's adventures begin. As you go through the land you'll find all kinds of different game mechanics (as if the whole top-down RPG element wasn't enough) and elements new to the Gwent universe. You'll be able to scan your surroundings for treasure chests (that may contain cards for both single- and multiplayer matches), solve environmental puzzles to get to these chests, take on side-quests (that are marked on the map as grey question marks and can grant you some recruits by earning their loyalty - a loyalty you can lose when in disagreements with said recruits), build structures to train your troops in, equip items you find on your travels, construct and enlist units, and visit the tavern to interact with your soldiers.

Now you might think "but this is supposed to be a card game!" - very true, and we're getting to that. You can, of course, build your perfect card deck in the Command Centre, the single-player mode's deck builder, and there are plenty of new cards to pick and choose from here. When a dialogue goes wrong or your enemies catch up to you on the top-down map, you'll be forced into combat and, you guessed it, the battles are held as Gwent matches (some of which have objectives the player needs to complete).

For those of you who are tired of playing with the same cards since the beta's beginning, don't fret. Two new leaders were showed at the event, the Blood and Wine favorite Detlaff van der Eretein and the lovely Queen of the Duchy of Toussaint, Anna Henrietta. Twenty new base cards (some being single-player-only because of balance issues), one new faction and a bunch of new card abilities are being added with the story expansion. For example, you'll be able to stagger opponents, put out devastating unit fires, and restore these units from the release of Thronebreaker. More game modes will also be added.

At the end of the single-player presentation, we got some information regarding future events and, other than ranked play tournaments (Gwent Open, Gwent Challengers and Gwent World Masters) the CD Projekt Red Gwent team will host single-player events. One of these was referred to as the "Mahakam Ale Festival" and with that, we're assuming we'll see some tipsy dwarves in the near future. The last word fell on our last question and the answer that was given; will we be seeing more story campaigns after the five maps are released later this year? Well, that depends on us, the fan base. If the story mode is well received and the fans actually want more, there's a possibility we'll get more.
Holy smokes. There is going to be a fire ability now? I guess it will work like weather but for individual units. Maybe two damage a turn?
A promising review by PC Gamer, with some nice gameplay, illustrating the camp, and challenges of battle.

Overall, the reviewer had a very positive experience, was impressed by the complexity of the puzzles, and only found gathering resources rather dull.
GameSpot interview with Principal Writer Jakub Szamałek about the process and experience of creating Thronebreaker: