The Witcher 3’s next-gen update is arriving in just a couple of days, and CD Projekt Red has released a full patch detailing all the new content on the way. This includes details about the game’s new visual features, supported mods, “Ultra+” PC settings, content inspired by Netflix, and more. You can check out the full patch notes for yourself below.
PC and next-gen exclusive
- Added Global Illumination Beam and Ambient Occlusion.
- Additionally, PC players with compatible hardware have the additional option of turning on ray-traced reflections and shadows.
- Several game-inspired mods and content have been added to the game to improve the visuals and overall game quality. We’ve included some community-made favorites as well as our own tweaks in areas such as environment and scenery improvements, realistic docks, and various decor upgrades.
- Community-made and community-inspired mods include:
- The Witcher 3 HD remastered project by HalkHogan
- HD Monsters Remastered by Denroth
- Immersive real-time footage from TIGI 25
- Nitpicker patch by chuckcash
- World map fixes by Terg500
- Textures have been upscaled to 4K for many characters, including Geralt, Yennefer, Triss, Ciri, Eredin, and more.
- All major characters, including Geralt, now cast HD self-shading even outside. Additionally, hair clipping through shields has been fixed as well as some other shield clipping issues.
- Environmental improvements:
- Added a new weather type – “Gray Sky”
- Sky textures have been updated
- Improve plants and water
- Various network improvements
- Improved some visual effects
- Updated global environmental illumination
- Added AMD FidelityFX Super Resolution (FSR) 2.1
- A photo mode has been added, allowing players to take amazing photos in the world of The Witcher 3.
- Added the option to pause the game during cutscenes.
- Added an alternate camera option that is closer to the player character and reacts dynamically to combat and movement. You can find this new setting in Options → Gameplay under Exploration, Combat and Camera distance.
- Added “ULTRA +” graphic settings on PC, which greatly increases the visual fidelity of the game. The graphical settings available in ULTRA + affect:
- Number of background characters
- Shadow quality
- grass density
- Quality texture
- Foliage viewing range
- Terrain quality
- water quality
- level of detail
- DLSS 3 support added. Only available on compatible devices.
Next Generation Console – Specifications c
- The overall quality of graphics has been improved on next generation consoles. Including improved textures, improved fidelity, shadow quality, greater draw distances, and crowd density.
- Ray Tracing Mode – Provides all-around ray-tracing illumination and ambient closure with dynamic targeting resolution at 30 frames per second for PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X.
- Performance Mode – Ensures smoother, targeted 60fps playback with dynamic resolution scaling for PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X.
- The Xbox Series S version does not contain ray tracing features. Quality mode offers higher resolution and better image resolution targeting 30fps, while Performance mode targets 60fps and prioritizes smoother gameplay over image quality.
- Implemented the use of adaptive triggers and haptic feedback on PS5 DualSense controllers.
- Added activity cards for PS5.
- Added cross-progress feature between platforms. Your most recent saves will be automatically uploaded to the cloud so you can easily pick up where you left off on other platforms. Cross progression provides the most recent save for each save type. This feature becomes available after logging into your account.
- A new side quest, In The Eternal Fire’s Shadow, has been added in Velen. Bonuses inspired by The Witcher series from Neftlix.
- Added an alternate skin for Dandelion based on The Witcher on Netflix.
- Added an alternate Nilfgaardian Armor set based on the Netflix series The Witcher.
- Chinese and Korean voiceover added. Availability on consoles varies by region.
- Various improvements and changes to the Russian audio, including fixes for accelerated/slow lines in the vast majority of scenes.
Quality of life changes
- Added option to send quick recording. It allows cues to be swapped and cast without opening the radial menu.
- A new default map filter has been added. The new filter hides some symbols like “?” and boat icons in order to reduce the clutter of icons on the map. These codes can be restarted using the “All” map mode toggle switch.
- The minimum height for fall damage has been modified, allowing the player to survive falls from higher heights.
- Herbs can now be looted instantly with a single interaction – without the additional loot window.
- Added options that dynamically hide the mini-map and mission objectives when not in combat or using your Witcher Senses.
- Added slow walk option when playing with a controller. You can now slow down the walk by gently pushing the left stick forward.
- Added alternate enemy mode option when playing with a controller. It is activated by clicking on the left stick.
- Added an option to make target lock unaffected by camera reflection.
- The radial menu has been improved so grenades, bolts and pocket items can now be dynamically swapped without opening the inventory.
- Added font size scaling option for subtitles, NPC chat options, and dialogue.
- Many other small fixes, tweaks, and quality of life changes have been added, including some secrets for players to discover.
- Mod Full Combat Rebalance 3 has been added by Flash_in_the_flesh which includes balance changes and various gameplay fixes. We took a systematic approach to this mod, with some elements tweaked more than you’ll find in the mod by default, while others were omitted.
- Scavenger Hunt: Wolf School Gear – Fixed an issue where the chest could not be opened in the signal tower.
- From the Far Shores of Ofier – Fixed an issue where the schematic diagram in the chest in the bandit’s hideout could be missing.
- Hard Times – Fixed an issue where Geralt could not speak or give the message to the blacksmith.
- Swift as the Western Winds – Fixed an issue where the quest would sometimes fail despite winning a horse race.
- Echoes of the Past – Fixed an issue where the mission might crash after defeating the Foglets and it wouldn’t be possible to talk to Yennefer.
- Wine Wars – Fixed an issue where a quest could not be completed if the player destroyed one of the required monster nests during exploration.
- Fixed an issue where the abandoned, shattered site of the Inn on the south shore of Ard Skellig could not be cleared in certain scenarios.
- Fixed an issue where the Grandmaster Wolven Set did not require Mastercrafted items.
- Various small fixes for quests and stories.
While it’s an impressive list of new features, The Witcher 3’s actual performance on next-gen consoles may be a topic of debate. Early analysis shows that the game’s upgraded visuals don’t run as sharp or smooth on PS5 as you might expect, particularly in Ray-Tracing mode.
The Witcher 3 can be played on PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, PS5 and Switch. The next-gen update drops on Wednesday (December 14th).