Gwent: Rogue Mage Is A New Deckbuilding Prequel Set Hundreds Of Years Before Witcher 3

While it uses the same cards and mechanics as CD Projekt Red's Gwent, Rogue Mage will be a strictly single-player affair.

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CD Projekt Red, the creators of the Witcher series, have announced a new title set in the Witcher universe--Gwent: Rogue Mage.

The new game, which releases July 7, is a roguelite deckbuilder that will use some of the same mechanics and cards from CD Projekt Red's previously released standalone Gwent card game (which is itself based on the card game from The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt). However, unlike Gwent proper, which is all about taking on other players, Rogue Mage will be a strictly PvE experience. Players will explore a procedurally generated map, unlock new cards for their deck, interact with Places of Power, and make the kind of moral choices that have become a staple of the Witcher RPGs.

The game's story takes place hundreds of years before the birth of Witcher hero Geralt, and is about the titular rogue mage Alzur's quest to create the very first Witcher. That being said, game director Vladimir Tortsov said the game is not "an official addition to The Witcher lore" in an interview with IGN.

There will be four decks to choose from in total, and players will be able to select key cards to build each deck around. Decks start with around a dozen or so cards but more cards can be found by exploring the map. Players will earn experience on each "run" that will increase the power of potential cards on the next run.

Gwent: Rogue Mage will be a standalone release for $10, with a $20 edition available that includes unlocks for the multiplayer version of the game. It will be available on PC, iOS, and Android devices. There is no plan to release Gwent: Rogue Mage on consoles, which CD Projekt Red confirmed earlier this year when the game was still referred to as "Project Golden Nekker."

If a single-player, card-based Witcher spin-off sounds familiar, it's because CD Projekt Red released another standalone Gwent-adjacent game, Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales, back in 2018. While Thronebreaker places an emphasis on story and characters and is considered a tried-and-true RPG (albeit with card battles instead of actual ones), Rogue Mage's goal, according to its game director, is to give players just enough story to complement Rogue Mage's "gameplay-first formula."

As for when the next mainline entry in the Witcher series is set to arrive, it could be a while. While CD Projekt Red did announce a new Witcher RPG is in development earlier this year (and will use Unreal Engine 5), it's likely still years away.

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