The Witcher 3: Hearts of Stone – Review

Hearts of Stone is the new expansion pack for Witcher 3 featuring about 10 hours of new game content.

You start the expansion by finding a witcher contract. Olgierd von Everec, one of the new main characters of Hearts of Stone, wants you to kill a monster in the sewers. This first part is pretty standard Witcher stuff. You go into the sewers and find an old friend of Geralt: Shani. Venturing deeper into the sewers, you fight some Drowners until you meet the first boss. The fight against the first boss feels mostly like those you have with the late-game monsters and doesn´t require any special tactic. After a turn of events Geralt finds himself captive and is freed by Gaunter O´Dim, who forces Geralt to help him with Olgierd. The rest of the expansion focuses on the three requests Geralt has to fullfill.

The first request features a wedding and a ghost. This part is very cutscene heavy and without any real danger. Geralt can participate in a few smaller activities at the wedding and romance Shani (when making the right choices).

The second part is a lot more fun. Geralt has to organize a heist. The player can choose who to recruit and also faces some tougher choices during the actual heist. This part features mostly fights against human characters and isn´t very special when focusing just on the gameplay.

The third request is very long in my opinion. It feels unnecessarily stretched but also makes Hearts of Stone a lot more special. The boss fights in this part are really new to the Witcher 3. The bosses in this part require a lot more tactic and can heal themselves, making the fight much more interesting. In this part Geralt finds himself in a haunted mansion. The mansion is very atmospheric and also features a few puzzles.

The finale of Hearts of Stone isn´t as epic as the original game´s ending but nevertheless I found it pretty satisfying. But this depends on your choice and you can also “skip” the confrontation with the main “enemy” of the expansion.

Conclusion:

As a whole I found this expansion pretty good. It has a lot what makes the Witcher 3 special and adds more to it. The promised 10 hours of gameplay felt a lot more shorter and I don´t mean this positively. Some parts were too unmemorable and felt repetetive. Nevertheless: for anyone who wants to enlrich his Witcher 3 experience Hearts of Stone is a really good choice.

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