The Witcher E3 Previews

CD Projekt's The Witcher is the subject of three new previews, all of which are based on the game's demo during this year's E3. The first is at IGN:
Also of note is the incredibly modified version of BioWare's Aurora engine, which was the renderer of choice for Neverwinter Nights, a game released almost four years ago. Well, the CD Projekt team gutted the innards and created a whole bunch of stuff from the scratch, and the Witcher looks completely proprietary. With bump mapping, normal mapping, specular highlights, Pixel Shaders 2.0, Karma physics, seamless lightmaps for day/night cycles and weather effects that have real affects on gameplay, the engine has been completely overhauled for today's fickle gamers.

The second is at GameSpy:
While admittedly fast-paced once combat ensues, The Witcher is highly story-driven. There are over 300 cut-scenes in the game, but you don't just sit back and watch the events unfold the entire time -- you'll be forced to make several morally ambivalent decisions. In our demo, The Witcher captured a bandit and had to decide what to do with him. Kill him? Set him free? Torture him? Wait for other Witchers to arrive and discuss it with them? What makes this interesting is that your decision, regardless of what it is, has a unique and direct impact on later events. If you set the bandit free, someone will die 12 hours later because he's alive to commit the crime. Wait for the Witchers and the story will go in a different direction. According to the developers, there are literally hundreds of "butterfly effect" branches like this.

And the third is at GamersInfo:
The Witcher gets you involved in the realtime fight and gives you the ability to use tactics during combat. You can maneuver around your foes and attack them from the sides and rear as well as using defensive maneuvers to shield yourself from attack. You have a magical shield that will keep arrows at bay for a short time as well as being able to knock them out of the air with your sword.

Part of the character tree has a set up for your combat skills. The more experienced you become through the game the more maneuvers and combat options become available to you. In the combat set up you can predetermine what attacks will be performed in what order when you engage in combat.