The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is one seriously big game. While riding across its vast lands and getting slightly overawed by the scale of everything, I started wondering just how big CD Projekt Red’s fantasy role-playing epic actually is.
The Polish developer helped me get a handle on the game’s sheer size by sharing some numbers behind the breakout hit which sold 4 million copies in its first two weeks.
The number of days it would actually take to sharpen every Witcher sword
The Witcher 3 has 172 unique Witcher silver swords. According to Sword-Buyers Guide, it takes around 3-5 hours to traditionally sharpen a sword in real life. You’d need around 688 hours, or 29 full days, to sharpen every one. Luckily, the sharpening process is a lot quicker in the game.
It would take 5 hours to open all of Novigrad’s doors if they animated like Resident Evil
The city of Novigrad — one of the key areas in The Witcher 3 — has 2,000 working doors. If they animated like the infamous doors in the first Resident Evil game — which take 9 seconds to open — it’d take you 5 hours to open every single one (not counting the time taken to loot all the goodies you find).
The Witcher 3 has 101 more unique communities than the state of Wyoming
This time around, the world of the Witcher is brimming with life. The Witcher 3 has 200 unique communities — villages, cities, and camps — compared to just 5 in The Witcher 2.
The days it would take the average Brit to have all the conversations in The Witcher 3
The Witcher 3 has 1,500 dialog sequences. It took 6 artists one-and-a-half years to put them all together. With the average British person having 27 conversations a day, it would take them nearly 8 weeks to naturally encounter all the dialog sequences in The Witcher 3. If only there was a ‘skip’ button in real life.
It takes the combined cast of 7 of Shakespeare’s plays to match The Witcher 3’s 98 main characters
The story in The Witcher 3 is pretty darn dramatic, and the size of its main cast tops anything that the legendary playwright William Shakespeare put together. In fact, its 98 main characters can only be matched by the collected casts from 7 of Shakespeare’s most popular plays: Hamlet (17 main characters), Macbeth (19), King Lear (12), Twelth Night (10), Othello (13), Much Ado About Nothing (15), and The Tempest (12).
What The Witcher 3’s secondary characters would cost to hire per day in real life
The Witcher 3 has a cast of 1,300 unique secondary characters outside of its 98 main characters. These are not just extras mingling in the background, and if The Witcher 3 was a Hollywood movie they’d require the Screen Actors Guild’s daily theatrical performer rate of $906. It would cost well over a million dollars a day just to have them all on set.
If they all stuck around — drinking coffee and kicking around in the mud — for a month, that would cost $17,716,833 in wages (at the SAG weekly rate of $3,145). That’s over half The Witcher 3’s estimated production budget of $32M.
The character textures from The Witcher 3 would fill a poster the size of 1,470 Mona Lisas
CD Projekt Red created 5,272 unique character textures for the game, covering a total area of 4,089,722 by 4,123,106 pixels. Printed out at a resolution of 150 dots per inch, these would fill a 600 square meter poster. Alternatively, you could fit 1,470 prints of the 77cm by 53cm Mona Lisa — the world-famous painting that 7 million people go to see every year — on a poster that size.
The number of cows a completionist would have to eat in the time it takes to see all 36 final world-states
The Witcher 3 has three different epilogues and — depending on your in-game actions — 36 different world-states when you finally complete it. Given that it takes the average player around 200 hours to finish everything — and assuming that you’re a completionist — you’d need around 7,200 hours or 300 full days of play in order to see every final world state. And that’s not allowing for any time to sleep.
The U.K.’s National Health Service reckons that men need to consume around 2,500Kcal a day to maintain their weight; for women, it’s 2,000Kcal. That means you’d need to eat 3,000 214g portions of raw meat — one of the foods you find in the game — to fuel your Witcher adventures if you’re a guy and 2,400 if you’re a lady. You can expect to get around 222kg of trimmed meat from a well-fed cow, so you’d need to slaughter and butcher three cows to see you through (with a little left over for when you’re done).
If that doesn’t appeal to you, you could always harvest 128kg (or 108kg) of raw sunflower seeds instead — or buy 1,280 of those little 100g bags. That would provide the 750,000 calories (or 600,000 calories) that you’d need.