Wednesday, May 1, 2013

The Witcher - Chapter 1 - Outskirts of Vizima

Click here for a list of all our walkthrough posts for The Witcher (Enhanced Edition).

Because there is already an official Enhanced Edition walkthrough from CD Projekt RED and an extensive database at The Witcher Wiki, we will only be touching on aspects of the game that are not documented there in-depth, or that you may not have thought about doing.
Decision-consequence videos are at the end.

  • Shani is a healer. If you are severely injured and walk close to her at the Inn, she will get up from her stool and cast a healing spell. This can be handy if you are farming the fistfighters for money.
  • There are only three bestiary entries you need to get from books: Barghest, Dog, Wolf. You can get the books from Abigail or the Antiquary.
    • You can get a "Tome of Fear and Loathing I" by out-drinking the Drunkard in the Tavern. If you do not, out-drinking the drunkard in the Hairy Bear in Chapter 2 will get you a book (nothing otherwise; probably a scripting error).
  • You can get monster and herb information from Old Townswomen and Old Women by gifting them food. Keep all fruits (including dried fruit) because you can swap them for Mistletoe (an ingredient you cannot harvest anywhere) in Chapter 2. 
    • You can do this in the early game when money is tight. But you will in general want to buy the books anyway for the remaining information on ingredients you can harvest, either from plants or monsters.
  • You can earn an unlimited amount of orens in various tedious but easy ways:
    • Winning fistfights: Each time you meditate in the Inn or exit-and-enter, the unnamed fighters recover and are ready to fight again. You can at most double the initial bet.
    • Collect herbs/ingrdients and sell them.
    • Collect Barghest skulls and sell them to Abigail. She initially pays 100 orens for 10 skulls per the Contract, but at any time (through her store) will buy 1 skull for 5 orens. She stops talking after [Of Monsters and Men] so make sure you unload any unneeded skulls prior to the finale of this Chapter.
      • You need at least 1 Barghest skull later in the game. You should be able to get this during the fight with the Beast.
  • Since it is easy to get money, you might as well shortcut the process using the genie in this convenience/cheat mod to get 10,000 orens each time you conjure him.
  • When you buy an alchemical concoction through dialogue from Abigail or the Dwarven Smith, you also get the formula.
  • Later in this chapter, the Beast will start coming for you. At various points on the map, there will be a brief cutscene of the Beast, then about 3 Barghests will spawn nearby. During the cutscene you can use hotkeys to draw your sword.
  • Closer to morning (around 4.30am or 5am), Barghests will continue to spawn at their usual locations or from Rabid Dogs, but they flee and disappear, presumably because it is too close to morning.
  • The Abandoned House with a corpse (dead body, not skeleton) has a Ghoul in it at night.
  • You can sell weapons to the Dwarven Blacksmith. Just open his smithing dialogue whether you have ore or not.
Unnamed Villagers
Some villagers have dialogue that sometimes results in interaction. Some of this appears to be random, so clicking on the same type of villager (i.e., different villager with the same name) could produce different results.
  • Traveler. This is a fat merchant in dark clothes (sometimes there is one in lighter-coloured clothes) -- looks like Leuvaarden. He always gives you 100 orens once.
  • Townswoman near Chapel, wearing white dress
    • Trades Daisies for Tulips.
    • The first one you encounter and give Daisies to will warn you about the Salamandra waiting to ambush you, but you can't really do anything with that information.
  • Old Townswoman in the village with the Chapel
    • Typically they accept money or food in exchange for telling you about a monster. You can only get information once per Old Townswoman.
    • One will ask for Pork (only from the Street Vendor, for 5 orens) and give you a bottle of wine.
  • Old Woman in the village south of the village with the Chapel.
    • Give them one unit of food to get information on a monster or herb.
    • They have a limited number of monster information entries you can learn, and do not repeat any entries. You can learn about Echinopsae here and properly harvest ingredients from them.
    • They have a limited number of herb information entries you can learn, and randomly draw from that list. Repeats are possible. List is: Balisse, Beggartick, Berbercane, Hellebore, Sewant, Verbena, White Myrtle, Wolf's Aloe. This list includes everything you can harvest in the Outskirts.
    • Reset their dialogue by going into a building and coming out again.
  • Peasant Woman
    • Sometimes one will actually have a dialogue with you. If you give any flower other than a Tulip, they give it back and ask for a Tulip.
    • If you give a Tulip, you can have sex with them.
  • Beggar
    • Old woman Beggar in the village south of the Chapel asks you for White Gull. Gives you a Ring of Eternal Fire. Since you can easily get one from the Reverend to do the quests in this Chapter, it is not clear how having a second one will help.
    • A Beggar near Haren Brogg's house mentions Nadir the Drowned Dead boss on the mill side of the water.
    • A Beggar at the west bridge into the city asks for alcohol. It appears that he will accept Strong alcohol, but it seems to lead nowhere.
[Buried Memories]
  • If for whatever reason you do not have a Cat potion, you CAN fight in the dark by turning on item names or pressing Alt to locate items you can click on -- including enemies. Since even human enemies can fight you in pitch darkness, this isn't really such a huge cheat as it is an equalizer.
  • Against Ghouls, use Aard with Stun, further enhanced by performing the Ritual of Magic at the Circle of Power outside. Note that if they come too close to you when you cast it, even though there is no attack animation, they can still land a hit on you. You can outfight them, but two-on-one can result in losing too much Vitality to continue exploring. Instead, withdraw and wait for your Endurance to recover and hit them with Aard again.
  • If you move forward slowly enough, you can typically draw a single ghoul from a pack and handle them one at a time.
  • At the Circle, touch it once to learn Igni, and then again to receive a temporary boost to your Igni skill.
[Mikul's Trust]
  • When you can report success to Mikul, there will be a fight against Salamandra on the bridge. Pretty straightforward by using Group Steel. Depending on your choice in the Prologue, you get different foes to fight. Contrary to the official guide, the encounter for having protected the lab is probably harder because after the cutscene with the mage, you are facing the wrong way and the Salamandra goons typically all get a free swing at you. Also you are subjected to a fire attack (presumably from the mage) and often get an Incineration effect on you very shortly after, with the possibility of fear from the flames stopping you from doing anything at all.
    • After the cutscene and black screen, pause the game immediately. Draw your sword. Whether the animation of you drawing is complete or not, just double-click behind the guards to jump over them as soon as possible. If you paused early enough, you might not be stuck in a hit reaction. If this doesn't work for you, jump away from them and toward the mage, which you will want to take down first anyway.
  • When you report success to Mikul, talking about the dead girl in the crypt ends dialogue with Mikul until he goes to his new post. You cannot therefore ask about the dice you found in the Crypt (assuming you don't already know about them).
  • He mentions that his friends intended to clear the blocked tunnels and loot the place. You immediately go back to the Crypt to kill the alghoul boss Ozzrel for the unmarked Royal Huntsman's quest King of the Crypt. Empowered Aard with stun for coup de grace will also work on the boss.
[Dead Hand of the Past]
> [The Cave]
  • To the left of the entrance are some tall rock formations. Start by going left and hitting the Echinopsae that spawn about 2x with your torch, then run behind one of these rock formations to get cover from their shots. Just wait for them to burn to death. The ones here, unlike the ones in Odo's garden, do not retreat into the ground to recover.
  • To get information on Echinopsae so that you can harvest ingredients from them, you need to speak with random "Old Woman" characters, offer them food, and ask about lore. One of them will eventually tell you because they draw from a limited pool of monster lore and do not repeat information that they have already given you.
> [Burial Place]
  • You do not need to consult with Leuvaarden first before seeing the Reverend.
  • When you bury the remains, you will meet the King of the Wild Hunt and have some dialogue choices.
    • Only one choice results in not fighting Leo even though your Journal indicates that you did, suggesting this is a bug. Not fighting Leo means you do not get a piece of Red Meteorite. This is one of three pieces in the game.
      • To reach this choice, choose "no destiny", say the phrase does not sound familiar, and recite the phrase as a vow.
    • When the King of the Wild Hunt asks if "You will give me what you have but do not expect" is familiar, this is a reference to the standalone adventure "The Price of Neutrality".
[The Secret Garden] > [Plants]
  • Draw a torch immediately. This puts you into combat mode and you stop staggering around drunk, although you will still have penalties for drunkenness.
  • Hit the Echinops with a torch a couple of times and retreat. Don't go too far or it will bury itself and come back fully healed. You want incineration to kill it for you because in melee, it does about 3x more damage than when it shoots at you.
  • If you speak with the dog afterwards, you deduce that it is guarding something but you cannot do anything about it. Given the lore behind the Echinops, and what is revealed at the end of Chapter 1, we can suspect that Odo's brother is buried in the garden.
    [Strangers in the Night] > [Elves] DECISION
    • If you allow them to take the goods, you apparently get to keep the gold as there is no indication that you surrendered it to Haren Brogg.
      • In Chapter 2, do NOT see Raymond until you finish [Hot Potato] and [The Rat].
    • If you defend the goods, when you report to Haren Brogg you can ask him to find Hoog of the Scoia'Tael for Zoltan. This option does not appear if you let the Scoia'Tael take the goods and there is no follow-up on Hoog later. This may be an early dialogue related to the consequence of choosing this option, which is revealed in Chapter 2.
    [The Salamander's Tail] > [The Hideout]
    • This is the same location where the village children converge during the day to play and say creepy things. Their behavior may be the reference to children killing the Witch's cat during the seance with Alvin.
    • The initial entry is tough because when you transition into the building, the script forces you to sheath your weapon and it deselects your magic Sign. Pause the game, select Aard, and blast them to buy you space; or just select a weapon and leap out.
    • When you first click the Trapdoor, you receive confirmation that Haren Brogg is trading with the Salamandra, but you cannot confront Haren about it at this time.
    [Of Monsters and Men]
    • Information on the Beast from Abigail. After the seance with Alvin, read the documents she gives you. You can then talk to Abigail for some non-essential dialogue.
    • Fighting the Beast:
      • The Beast can inflict Pain, possibly from Incineration by its fiery aura. This is probably the most dangerous situation. Try not to engage it one-on-one. To hit it, use Group Steel on nearby Barghests.
      • If you have Group Steel with Trip (knockdown effect), be careful that you do not click on a Barghest that is knocked down because during the finishing move, you are too exposed to the Beast and any other Barghests. This is an easy mistake to make. If everything has been knocked down, just reposition, use Igni, or use Aard on the Beast.
      • There is enough room to run or dodge around quite safely. Do this while you recover your Endurance so you can use Aard again. Aard with stun is the safest (and cheapest) way to kill the Beast. In fact, if you start this fight with Aard, you could get lucky and stun it before it can do anything.
      • Once The Beast dies, any Barghests it has summoned also die. Remember that you need at least one Barghest skull for Chapter 4.
    • If you side with Abigail...
      • She periodically casts a healing spell. She is plot-critical and cannot die, but can be rendered unconscious.
      • After fighting the Beast, villagers attack her. If you attack them, the cutscene will still take over, during which time the villagers will continue to attack you, but you cannot do anything. Instead, just let her be attacked and wait for the cutscene. She may or may be rendered unconscious, but since she cannot be killed, it is not a big deal.
      • She takes Berengar's notes on the Beast.
    [She's No Early Bird]
    The escort part of this quest includes Barghests spawning at two points, which happen to be fairly close to the roadside shrines to the Eternal Fire. These shrines also spawn groups of Barghests if you are on the quest for the Reverend to light the shrines, which means you could end up fighting some pretty big groups. If you are having problems fighting them off or keeping Vesna alive, you can avoid this by clearing them first:
    • Vesna and the thugs appear at night, and will re-appear each night until you trigger the encounter by getting close. When you first get to Chapter 1, stay in or around the Inn until closer to morning when the encounter disappears. Before nightfall, make sure you are not near the Inn, where the encounter begins. Go to each shrine and kill the Barghests, then head back to the Inn to rescue and escort Vesna.
    • Optionally, if you don't want to handle the Barghests, you can go the long way to her house -- That is, head in the direction of Abigail's, continue toward Mikul's post on the east side, and crossover via the shore to the village where Vesna lives. The two Barghest spawn points for this mission are near shrines of the Eternal Fire in the other direction, and deactivate once you have escorted Vesna home.

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