Gwent: The Witcher Card Game

Key events

Card games haven't done story on this level before. With Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales, we're not talking about a bolted-on campaign, we're talking about a whole separate game - a 30-dollar, 30-hour Witcher story with more lines of dialogue than The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt expansion Hearts of Stone. Thronebreaker has 77 side quests, 20 possible end-states and is directed by Mateusz Tomaszkiewicz, lead quest designer on Witcher 3 (and also brother of Witcher 3 game director Konrad Tomaszkiewicz).

FeatureThe future of GOG: mod support, Steam rivalry and problematic tweets

"Every game you buy which includes DRM is, in a way, inferior."

Almost 10 years ago to the day, CD Projekt launched the online digital game store Good Old Games. The operation and scope was small - a handful of people salvaging iconic old PC games for modern operating systems - but the prices, customer service and DRM-free message were right, and slowly the service grew. And grew, and grew. And today things are different.

CD Projekt details gritty Gwent: Homecoming upgrade in new video

It's been a busy few weeks for CD Projekt. Alongside finally revealing some intense gameplay for Cyberpunk 2077, the developer has also been busy sharing news about its card game Gwent.

A new video, shown at the fourth Gwent Challengers tournament, shows the game will receive a number of major changes in its Gwent: Homecoming overhaul. Most of the improvements seem to be focused on the visuals, but there are also some noteworthy changes to the gameplay.

The developers presenting the video, Pawel Burza and Michal Dobrowolski, state the overhaul is about bringing a darker, grittier aesthetic to the game to give it a more "Witcher 3 feel". As part of this, there are a number of new boards based on factions from the Witcher series, including Skellige, the Northern Realms and Nilfgaard. The video only gives players a peek at one - but it's (quite literally) a monster.

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Sounds like Cyberpunk 2077 decided against multiplayer

Witcher encouraging words to hear.

There's been the suggestion of multiplayer in CD Projekt Red's new game Cyberpunk 2077 for a while. In 2013, studio head Adam Badowski even told me "we're going to add multiplayer features", although he also said "it will be a story-based RPG experience with amazing single-player playthroughs". Regardless, that was five years ago, and a lot has happened since then.

Gwent: The Witcher Card Game enters open beta next week

Gwent: The Witcher Card Game enters open beta next week

Conjure it up on PC, PS4, Xbox One.

Gwent: The Witcher Card Game will enter open beta on 24th May on PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

The collectible card battler has been available in closed beta for a while. Sadly, if you've been playing so far, your progress is about to be reset.

Both card collections and player progress will need to be started over from scratch, and the closed beta period will end two days beforehand on 22nd May so that servers can be wiped clean and prepped for the game's fresh start.

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We've got 10,000 Gwent: The Witcher Card Game closed beta keys to give away

UPDATE 8AM 7TH FEB: All of the keys have now gone. If you weren't lucky enough to get one, remember, anyone who signed up for the Gwent beta last year will be invited to join from Friday. In other words, it's gradually opening up.

ORIGINAL STORY 3.30PM 6TH FEB: Northern Realms, Nilfgaardian Empire, Scoia'tael, Skellige, Monsters - which do you prefer? Will you rush the table and overwhelm by number, or will you wait and watch, tease and toy?

Will you win at standalone Gwent: The Witcher Card Game, or will you lose? We've got 10,000 keys to the closed beta - on PC or Xbox One (you play with people on both systems) - to give away so you can find out.

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How did you get on with Gwent in The Witcher 3? It seemed like everyone was obsessed for a while. I enjoyed it, to begin with. It was surprisingly fully conceived for a mini-game. But as the Witcher 3 campaign got going and Gwent cards started being out of my way, I let it slide. My deck didn't improve, I couldn't compete with tougher opponents and I got thrashed. And so I gave up on Gwent.

Gwent closed beta delayed until October

Gwent closed beta delayed until October

"Delivering a good game is more important to us than keeping a deadline."

The Witcher 3's virtual card game spin-off Gwent has been delayed. Originally it was slated to enter closed beta on PC and Xbox One in September, but now it's been pushed back until 25th October.

"Unfortunately, we feel we need some extra time with the game before we hand it off to you for testing," developer CD Project Red said in a statement. "We know we can make a first impression only once, and want to be sure everything is ready before we blast off.

"Delivering a good game is more important to us than keeping a deadline. Still, that doesn't mean we don't realise that delays can be disappointing, and we apologise for making you wait."

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A lot of collectible card games let you buy and open card packs. It's a fun mechanic, but one of the issues with the system is its randomness. Most of the time you get a load of cards you either don't want - or already have.