CDPR On “Downgrade-Ation” – Smoke Effects Would Kill Any PC, Bad Decision to Change the Rendering System

CD Projekt RED has finally spoken the truth about the visual differences between the VGX trailer and the final version of The Witcher 3. As most of us have already guessed, the new rendering system is to be blamed for these less impressive visuals. Not only that, but CD Projekt RED acknowledged the fact that consoles held back the PC version.

As Marcin Iwinski told Eurogamer:

“If the consoles are not involved there is no Witcher 3 as it is. We can lay it out that simply. We just cannot afford it, because consoles allow us to go higher in terms of the possible or achievable sales; have a higher budget for the game, and invest it all into developing this huge, gigantic world.”

Marcin acknowledged that a PC-only title would look better, however CD Projekt RED would not afford to create such an expensive game.

Both Adam Badowski and Marcin Iwinski admitted that the game’s visuals where changed because the VGX build did not work as an open-world title. CD Projekt RED faced major difficulties while trying to make that build work in the game’s open-world nature, however it appears that this was not possible.

Adam Badowski later claimed that the new rendering system may be blamed for some of the graphical differences:

“Maybe it was our bad decision to change the rendering system, because the rendering system after VGX was changed. There were two possible rendering systems but one won out because it looked nicer across the whole world, in daytime and at night. The other would have required lots of dynamic lighting “and with such a huge world simply didn’t work.”

As for the infamous smoke and fire effects, Adam claimed that they would kill almost all PC systems. Adam also said that without DirectX 12 these effects don’t work good in every game, which obviously begs the question; will CD Projekt RED add them via a patch with support for DX12?

Marcin Iwinski concluded:

“Maybe we shouldn’t have shown that [trailer], I don’t know, but we didn’t know that it wasn’t going to work, so it’s not a lie or a bad will – that’s why we didn’t comment actively. We don’t agree there is a downgrade but it’s our opinion, and gamers’ feeling can be different. If they made their purchasing decision based on the 2013 materials, I’m deeply sorry for that, and we are discussing how we can make it up to them because that’s not fair.”

And that is that. CD Projekt RED has finally told everyone the truth about the game’s visuals. And that’s a good thing.

A new patch will be coming that may improve the game’s visuals on the PC, however don’t expect major overhauls as the rendering system won’t be changed and those spectacular smoke and fire effects are not possible in DX11.