The Witcher: Here’s How To Change Difficulty

how to change difficulty in witcher 1
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One of the first choices you’re going to make when you’re just starting a new playthrough of Witcher 1 is the difficulty setting. You have three options at your disposal, and you can pick only one based on your prior experience with the game and your skills. Sometimes, we can misjudge certain difficulties, and this leads to wanting to adjust them further without restarting the game. And while Witcher 3: Wild Hunt does have such options, Witcher 1 is a much older game, and this leads us to our next question. How do you change the difficulty in The Witcher? 

  • Article Breakdown:
  • You cannot change the difficulty in the Witcher 1 mid-game. The only chance you’re going to get to adjust the difficulty is at the beginning of the game.
  • You can, however, edit the settings of the game through the “Difficulty settings mod,” which allows you to adjust several mechanics of the game in order to make the game easier or more difficult based on what you’re trying to accomplish.

How many difficulties are there in Witcher 1? 

There are three difficulties in Witcher 1, easy, medium, and hard. It’s pretty self-explanatory how the difficulties are adjusted and to which skill set they are most appropriate. Witcher 1 is a highly stat-based game, meaning that the harder the difficulty gets, the more pronounced this becomes. In the rest of this post, we’re going to analyze each difficulty setting so you know what to prepare for. 

Easy difficulty 

easy diffuclty

This difficulty is most appropriate for players new to the game and the ones who don’t want to overthink mechanics and alchemy. Enemies will not be able to hit you critically, and they will not use the opportunity while you’re performing ranged attacks or drinking potions to hit you. Enemies will have weaker attacks, and you will be able to hit them significantly harder.

Playing on easy will allow you to focus more on the story and exploration without sacrificing enjoyment. 

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Medium difficulty 

Medium difficulty

This difficulty is recommended for most players, it’s slightly more challenging, but it doesn’t introduce new mechanics as enemies are still not able to critically hit you, and they are not able to attack you while you’re performing ranged attacks or drinking potions. While playing on this difficulty, it’s recommended that you start using alchemy to give yourself that extra push needed to defeat enemies. 

Expect normal damage output from the enemies with no “bonus” damage applied when you’re hitting them. Medium difficulty is a perfect balance between enjoying the game and enjoying the combat. 

Hard Difficulty 

hard difficulty

This difficulty will challenge you, and it’s recommended to try playing hard when you’ve finished the game on other difficulties at least once. This difficulty will enable enemies to hit you critically and attack you when you’re using ranged attacks or drinking potions. This will severely affect your playing as it effectively means that enemies will make the most out of your weaknesses. 

Bonus damage will be applied when enemies are hitting you but expect no such thing when you’re hitting them. It’s also strongly recommended that you take up alchemy, as it will be the only thing that will be able to bridge the gap and give you that extra push to defeat enemies. In most encounters, you will find out you’re lacking either damage or health to complete the encounter in your favor. Arm yourself with alchemical substances that give you extra damage or health to win. In this regard, Witcher 1 is similar to Witcher 3. On the highest difficulties, Witcher 3 requires that you utilize alchemy and bestiary in full in order to prevail in the game.

If you’re not prepared to play on hard difficulty, you will most certainly not enjoy the game. In fact, you will not be able to progress through the game in any significant way as you will struggle with the most minor of encounters. 

How to change the difficulty in Witcher 1? 

If you’ve already chosen difficulty and now you’re rethinking your choices, I’m afraid it’s not possible to change difficulty mid-game in Witcher 1. The only chance you’re going to get to adjust the difficulty is at the beginning of the game. 

However, there are things that you can do that allow you to adjust the difficulty without changing the setting itself. One of the things you have at your disposal is the “Difficulty settings mod.” It’s a do-it-yourself modification that adjusts certain options to make the game easier or harder, depending on what you prefer. 

For example, you can adjust the damage multiplier, bleeding, vitality regeneration, armor efficiency, stun chance, and many other factors that affect how difficult the game will be. You can check out these settings on this link, and you can use the pre-made settings for each difficulty if you’re not interested in playing some kind of hybrid difficulty. 

You can use difficulty settings mod to adjust the game to be way easier even when you’re playing on easy and give yourself god-like powers and the opposite is true as well. If you feel that the highest difficulty is not challenging, you can use this mod to increase the difficulty further to bring the game to a so-called “nightmare” difficulty. 

Whatever you decide to choose, don’t forget to back up the original file, as you might want to revert changes in the future, and you might be unable to do so. 

Summary 

Even though you can’t adjust the difficulty in Witcher 1 in the middle of the game, you can always manipulate the settings through the “difficulty settings mod.” This allows you to adjust various combat-related factors, such as vitality regenerations, armor efficiency, damage multiplier, etc. 

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If you don’t want to modify the game’s file, then the only viable choice at your disposal is to start the game from the beginning and choose difficulty according to your skills and experience. 

Have something to add? Let us know in the comments below!

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