The Witcher 4 is officially in development.
Developer CD Projekt Red announced (opens in new tab) the next installment in the storied RPG franchise in a brief blog post. The new game hasn't been officially labeled as The Witcher 4, but it's said to kick off "a new saga for the franchise."
The Witcher 4, or whatever its final title ends up being, will see CD Projekt Red jump from REDengine, which was used for the development of Cyberpunk 2077, to Unreal Engine 5. The studio has been using the engine since The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings, released in 2011. However, REDengine will still be used for the upcoming Cyberpunk 2077 expansion.
The creator of Unreal Engine, Epic Games, will also become a central partner for CD Projekt Red across a "multi-year strategic partnership." CDPR says it will be working to fine-tune the new-gen game engine to suit the open worlds it's known for.
However, while Epic Games will be a key partner for CDPR going forward, the official Witcher account confirmed (opens in new tab) that there are no plans to make The Witcher 4 exclusive to the Epic Games Store on PC, or indeed any other storefront.
The studio was quick to stress that it doesn't have a development time frame, release date, or even a ballpark release window to share for The Witcher 4 at this stage. The only information we have to go on comes from the teaser image in the announcement, which seems to feature the Witcher medallion used by the School of the Cat. This school is notably distinct from the School of the Wolf followed by Geralt, the protagonist of The Witcher series.
As The Witcher fandom wiki notes (opens in new tab), the School of the Cat is one of the only Witcher schools that regularly trains women and non-pureblood humans. This could suggest that the next game in the series will feature a new playable character instead of, or perhaps in addition to Geralt, but it's also theoretically possible that Geralt will return only to get tangled up in the workings of another Witcher faction.
Many fans have speculated (read: breathlessly wished) that The Witcher 4 could feature Ciri, Geralt's adopted daughter, as its lead. However, while Ciri did have some significant dealings with the School of the Cat, she was formally trained at Kaer Morhen under the guidance of Geralt and other members of the Wolf, so we can only assume so much based on this teaser image alone. That said, there's little doubt that big changes are coming to the Witcher games as we know them.
Here are the best games like The Witcher 3 to help tide you over while we wait for more information on the next installment.