The Witcher 3 DOs and DONTs Guide: Beginner Tips (2024)

A great collection of Witcher 3 beginner tips for new players. Learn the DOs and DONTs for The Witcher 3’s early game and get a headstart with this guide!

This guide is up-to-date for The Witcher 3 Next-Gen version (Update 4.04)

The Witcher 3 is an incredible and complex game. There are so many things you need to learn and know that it can be a little overwhelming at some point. Boss fights, gear, sidequests, crafting, decision-making, etc.

This guide includes a large number of tips that will make your time playing The Witcher 3 easier. Hopefully, this saves time and also prevents you from making rookie mistakes that can lead to losing many minutes or even hours trying to figure something out.

There are small hints about what happens at some point in the game but nothing to worry about. I tried to do this guide as spoiler-free as possible.

One of the first things that you should know is that looting and gathering materials is essential in The Witcher 3. Weapons, armor, or potions are required to defeat the monstrosities that await you in every dark corner.

Loot everything that you find in your path; chests, plants, or corpses. It doesn’t matter if it’s just an apple, everything can be useful.

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There are some items that are necessary to complete objectives. For example, crafting the Grapeshot Bomb as soon as possible is one of the best things you can do if you are a completionist. This item allows you to destroy the nests that you encounter throughout your adventure.

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This is one of the consumables that you already have the recipe for from the very beginning. You just need the ingredients. And they are nothing special. Visit the merchants in White Orchard or dismantle items you own to get what you need.

Bombs are not the only useful consumable items that you can use. Crafting Oils, Bombs and Potions can give you the edge when fighting a foe that’s higher level than you or more resistant than the common enemy. Using the proper item will make the difference between getting stuck or continuing your adventure.

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Use our Oils, Potions, Decoctions and Bombs catalogs to find out where and how to obtain the manuscripts and how to craft the consumable items.

If you spot tiny light blue dots sparkling in the air or around an object, or just clustered together, use your Witcher senses and approach the location. These dots usually mark a location of an item of interest. Sometimes this could start a new quest for you. Other times it’s just a weird note or an item from an already completed quest that (for some reason) the game still shows you as important. Just don’t pass by these, loot and examine them.

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The Witcher 3 DOs and DONTs Guide: Beginner Tips (5)

If you play on higher difficulties, healing becomes a problem. On Blood and Broken Bones as well as on Death March, the highest difficulty tiers in the game, you do not restore HP while meditating, only potions and bombs.

One of the many ways to help mitigate the issue of lack of passive healing is to craft the Ekimmara and Ekhinda Decoctions. This isn’t exactly “early game” advice as you will not meet an Ekhinda or an Ekimarra in White Orchard. The Ekimmara decoction formula is available in White Orchard, but to craft it, you will need an actual Ekimmara. You can find all you need on that topic in our full Decoctions Catalog.

Investing Points into the general skills Gourmet and Sun and Stars can help you, but you’d be wasting both Ability Points and Skill Slots to use these. At early levels, this may not be a good idea. An alternative approach is to swap out these Skills when you are about to start a Boss fight or preparing to fight a challenging foe.

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The main story is incredible and it might capture your attention in a way few other games have. I understand the urge to know what’s going to happen next and wanting to know the role of every character you encounter but please consider not skipping secondary quests.

Doing this will only leave you under-leveled and you’ll eventually have to return to recover that experience that you missed. There are few things that feel worse than running away from a group of Drowners or Wraiths because of being too weak.

But you should mainly do the side quests because they are fun. The majority of the XP to level up you will gain from main quests. If you are a level or two lower than what a quest recommends you to be, should not stop you from doing it.

There are a few anomalies in the game when it comes to the recommended level. A good example is Wandering in the Dark, which. This quest can easily be done at level 4 or 5. Especially if you prepare properly for it. Another example is the starter quest that leads you to Novigrad. It requires level 9, but the next one after that is for level 7. Don’t wait to visit Novigrad!

There are many RPGs that have boring sidequests and instead of adding something to the story, it becomes tiresome. But I truly think that most of the Witcher’s 3 missions are quite entertaining and even interesting.

Completing them allows you to connect the dots and have a better understanding of what’s happening in the bigger picture. It’s not just about the main characters and stories, minor storylines have something to offer too.

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Being out in the wild fighting against bandits and monsters is one of my favorite things to do in The Witcher 3. Not only it is fun, but also an experience with a decent learning curve. Some monsters can be defeated with just the use of your swords, but others will put up a better fight.

One of the most common mistakes beginners and even more experienced players do is forgetting to read the bestiary. There are creatures that will prove harder to beat, if you struggle with an enemy open your bestiary and read what’s effective against it.

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Learning your opponent’s weaknesses is important if you want to finish the game without struggling too much, but that goes both ways. Weapons and armor pieces can’t receive an infinite number of hits.

How much of the optional and bonus written content in the form of notes and diaries do you read when playing a game? Notes and books in The Witcher 3 have information that can help you know where to go next, know more about the story of a character or learn something vital to complete a quest. I know that sometimes it can be easy to disregard what’s in these documents, but trust me when I said that reading everything will make everything easier.

I’d recommend that you read everything as soon as you find it. If you leave it all for later then the number of pages is going to go up and by the time you decide to read them, it’s going to take you many minutes or even hours to do so.

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If you’ve been out in the wild for too long there’s a chance that you need to repair your gear. Damaged items will be less efficient and no one wants to be at a disadvantage when fighting a powerful enemy. Every once in a while check how’s your gear condition and repair it if necessary. If you miss the moment and let your gear wear off too much, the game will notify you with a diagram on your screen. The damaged item will be in red color.

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Repairing at a crafter costs money. Earning money is not easy when you’re just starting, this only makes it more important to learn that not every merchant or vendor values your stuff equally. For example, a common merchant won’t pay you the same amount a Blacksmith would for a nice sword.

There is a tiny difference between the amount of money you will get selling a sword to a Blacksmith compared to an Armorer. It’s so small, you can ignore it. But wanted to mention it. Each merchant is willing to pay a little bit more for an item that is within their specialty.

There might be occasions when you desperately need the coins but try to be patient and find the merchant that will pay you the right amount of money.

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Though, sometimes the amount offered is so low that it’s a better idea to dismantle some of the items you carry. It won’t be long before you get a new sword or armor piece that has better stats so don’t be afraid to do it. Your future self will thank you when there’s no need to look for materials because you already have the ones you need to craft a Witcher Armor Set.

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Speaking of dismantling vs selling items, I advise you to hold on to items in the Other tab – things like trinkets, pelts, fur, and other “junk” items. Either dismantle them as you get them or dismantle them when you need a piece of crafting material you don’t have. If you are very desperate for coins, sell a few, but not all of them.

Oftentimes around an Armorer or Blacksmith, you will find a Grinding Stone and/or a Workbench. Use them to enhance your weapons and armor for an hour. You will get two buffs on a timer. This is a great boost to use when you are about to face a tough enemy, like a quest boss or monster for a contract.

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Another way to increase your power when getting ready to face a tough opponent is to use a Place of Power. There are thirty Places of Power in the entire game, spread across the different zones. You can find them all with the help using the Places of Power Locations Guides.

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Almost all Places of Power are in the open world and you can get to them freely at any point. Each Place of Power will also grant you +1 Ability Point. They also grant you a 30 minute long buff increasing the effects of one of your Signs.

Nobody likes looking like a clown with randomly picked-up gear just because it provides the highest stats. One way to eliminate this is to pick up the Witcher Gear Sets on level, collect and craft the diagrams, then give monsters hell!

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Witcher sets are usually the most powerful and most optimized pieces of gear for the current level when they can be used. We have in-depth guides showing you how and where to obtain all Witcher Gear Diagrams and how to craft them. Including where and how to pick up the map fragments that start the Scavenging Hunt quests for them. These sets will send you traveling all around the world of The Witcher 3!

Traveling across the different zones is essential to your gameplay and progression. Roach is the most loyal companion and she will be there to help you almost every time you need it.

Equipping Roach with Saddlebags increases the maximum carry weight. You can earn a great reward for the saddle slot from one of the horse races. At some point, after you progress through the main story in Novigrad, you will see a side quest icon appear in the middle of Hierarch Square in Novigrad. The races take place near the Vegelbud’s residence east of the city in Velen.

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Earlier in the (Novigrad) story, you would have gotten a great upgrade for the saddlebags slot on the same track. The main idea is to participate in these horse races when you are invited. You can get great and free equipment for Roach

Defeating powerful beasts allows you to acquire trophies, when you equip Roach with a Trophy, you’ll be granted a buff.

Remember that if you press the gallop button when on the road Roach won’t lose any stamina.

Horses are the most reliable way of travel but they also serve as a good way to escape dangerous places. If you need to go inside a place but want to get out of there as soon as possible leave Roach near the entrance facing towards the direction that you want to go.

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There’s a trick that (almost) always works regarding calling Roach and where you want the horse to appear. When you whistle for your horse, Roach will usually spawn out of your view. This most often happens right behind Geralt. You can use that to your advantage and spawn Roach exactly where you want her to be. I find it to be less of a rule after the Next-Gen Update, but it still works fairly regularly.

The Witcher 3 isn’t only a Role Playing Game, it’s considered to be amongst the best in the genre. Every choice has consequences, even the ones from secondary quests that might appear to have zero importance.

“What if instead of an honorable warrior Geralt was the complete opposite of it?” The Witcher 3 allows you to explore this idea and many more. Give Geralt an identity and commit to it with the choices you make. Of course, this one is only a personal suggestion, you can play the game however you want.

The interesting thing is that there’s a total of thirty-six endings. The number of possible outcomes is incredible, have fun with it.

As with any good RPG, romancing a character (in this case Triss or Yennefer) is an option to unlock more dialogue options and spice the story with some drama. However, this choice can be tricky. Geralt might be a very powerful and reliable Witcher but not even he can handle the fury of two women. Think carefully about who you want Geralt to end up with.

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The Witcher 3 DOs and DONTs Guide: Beginner Tips (20)

When it comes to combat tips, learn when to parry and when to dodge. While parrying is one of the most rewarding abilities to master it’s not useful against everything and sometimes it might even be dangerous for you.

When fighting against mere soldiers it might not be a problem but when you face a superior enemy it can cost you a good percent of your health bar. For example, when you get to fight Nithral evading the attack is the best choice. If you try to parry or even block his axe you’ll get stunned and become vulnerable to the next attack, if you’re low on health this could be a fatal mistake.

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There’s nothing to parry when you are facing monsters as well. Dodge and roll are your best friends there. Speaking of these two, learn when to dodge and when to roll. Rolling away creates a bigger distance faster between you and the enemy you are trying to go away from. However, it uses Stamina. Dodge is a great way to avoid normal attacks from most enemies.

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Since fast attacks are easier to spam it’s natural that most of us get used to only using these types of attacks. Don’t forget that strong attacks exist for a reason, you won’t be able to break the defense or deal enough damage to heavy-armored or shield-wielding enemies.

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Feeling powerful and unstoppable is one of the best feelings in any game that has any sort of combat. The Witcher 3 is no exception to this. Signs, sword strikes, parries, bombs and dodges can look very flashy when used to beat multiple enemies.

Sadly for us, it’s not that easy to pull it off in the early stages of the game. I’ll never forget the first time that I slew the Royal Griffin, I was feeling so good about not struggling with my first boss fight in the game.

That feeling lasted me less than five minutes because I decided that it would be a good idea to use a pack of low-level wolves to practice, I got destroyed in the most embarrassing way that I still laugh about it. Since that moment I always think twice before attacking a large group of enemies.

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Casting multiple signs can be tedious and I believe that it breaks the immersion of the game. Thankfully there’s an easy solution for PC players. You can use the scroll wheel of your mouse to quickly switch signs, just roll it up or down.

Pressing 3,4,5,6,7 on your keyboard will also select a different sign. I find using the scroll wheel easier but it’s just a personal preference.

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Thanks to the Quick Cast option, introduced with the release of the Free Next-Gen Update to The Witcher 3, console players have a way to cast signs faster and easier now. hold the right trigger and then press the button that corresponds to the desired sign you want to cast. All done in real-time, no need to go through the Wheel menu.

A practitioner of many arts is a master of none, do not attempt to put Skill points in all skill trees. Think about your playstyle and how you want to approach combat. Read the skill tree description and once you’ve made up your mind put your points where you see fit.

There’s a limited number of abilities that you can activate, spend the remaining skill points on abilities that you’d like to try.

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There is a way to reset your points spent by drinking a special potion you an buy from a merchant in Novigrad. You can purchase Potion of Clearance from the shop sust south of St. Gregory’s Bridge in Novigrad. In fact, this NPC is one of the important merchants you have to visit early in The Witcher 3.

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I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to save your game as often as possible. It’s very frustrating to be defeated and have to restart a quest or fight from the start because you didn’t save the game. Saving the game every five or ten minutes would be the safer way to go.

There’s a setting for the Autosave Interval in the Gameplay menu. You can tell the game to save automatically for you every three to fifteen minutes. Relying on autosave and checkpoint saves is not safe. Make manual saves or quicksaves often.

As you progress through the game it will become easier to identify when something important is about to happen but even experienced players save the game frequently.

Don’t overuse Quick Travel, it’s true that it can make things a lot easier but try to explore everything in the area before going to the closest Signpost. There are nests, treasures, quests and enemies waiting for you; exploring can be very rewarding if you dedicate some time to it.

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Sometimes quick travel is a way to save time indeed. Here’s a tip for that. If you need to travel back to something, but you find yourself near the corner of the map, walk a bit further! You’ll see a notification that says “You’ve reached the world’s edge. None but devils play past here… Turn back.”

The game will automatically pull the map up on your screen, allowing you to Quick Travel to any place without needing to use a Signpost. This isn’t something that you’re going to use that often but it’s a handful trick.

I recommend that you use the map with the Default icons combination displayed. If you enable All, you may see a ton of question marks. By the way, the question marks will appear after you check a nearby message board.

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The Witcher 3 DOs and DONTs Guide: Beginner Tips (30)

These are great for when you decide to be a completionist, but may distract you from enjoying the world and instead force you into a markers-hunt and make you see these icons as a checklist. Explore on your own, discover them naturally.

After you beat the game consider switching to the All Items filter. This tip is especially true for Skellige, where there are about a million question marks in the open seas. The new filter was introduced with the free next-gen update.

It’s easy to have a full inventory after a few hours of playing. Remember that you can store your items in the Stash. You can store many items there. Use it to keep important items like Witcher Gear Sets or trophies that you’re not currently using.

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The world is full of expensive things so it’s necessary that you obtain as much money as possible.

One way of doing this is heading to Novigrad and searching for Vivaldi’s Bank. You’ll find an NPC called Vimme Vivaldi at the western end of Hierarch Square. He can convert your currency into crowns (the default currency used in every shop and merchant in the game). This will help you a lot especially if it’s the first time that you are in Novigrad.

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Gwent is a game built within a game. If you’ve ever played a TCG (Trading Card Game) you understand how addictive and fun it can be to search for rare cards and build the best deck.

I’ve played one or two TCG games in the past and I can confirm that playing Gwent can be both very exciting and frustrating. At least when you’re starting, after you’ve acquired some nice cards and have played a couple of dozen games you’ll see that it’s a very fun game. There are many cards and people to play with so don’t hesitate to go out of your way to find the rarest cards.

This is what your starter deck will look like. It’s pretty basic but don’t worry, you’ll have a lot of chances to get good cards.

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Messing up with guards is fun in almost every game that allows it and The Witcher 3 is no exception. However, the consequences of doing so might catch many off guard so please think twice before picking any fights. As a result of defying the guards and losing, they’ll knock you down and strip Geralt of every last coin. It doesn’t matter if you have two hundred, two thousand, or twenty thousand.

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Crafting is one of the core mechanics of The Witcher 3, which is why you should gather every single material that you find. High-tier items require harder-to-find materials like monster parts, monster nests are one of the best ways to acquire them. Do not destroy the nests until you’ve crafted things like Witcher Armor Sets, Potions, Decoctions, Oils, and Bombs.

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Remember to save your game frequently in case you must go back. If you have multiple saves try to keep track of them, there are few things more annoying than looking for something over dozens of saves.

I can’t ever say that this guide is completed. This is just the first set of tips and tricks. If you come back later, there’s a very high probability that there will be more added. If you have something to share with the community, please leave a comment and I or Vulkk will include it in the guide. Thanks for reading this guide to the Witcher 3 DOs and DONTs.

The Witcher 3 DOs and DONTs Guide: Beginner Tips (2024)


Is Witcher 3 hard for beginners? ›

The Witcher 3 can be incredibly overwhelming for newcomers diving into its vast and dangerous universe. It's likely that when you are first given free rein to begin exploring, you won't know where to start.

What is the best thing to do at the start of The Witcher 3? ›

So let's get started!
  • Quicksave before every fight.
  • Meditate for an hour to fully recover your health.
  • Prepare for tough fights with oils and potions.
  • Learn when to dodge, when to roll, and when to parry.
  • Head to all the notice boards when in a new region.
  • Use the roads while on horseback to gallop indefinitely.
Dec 16, 2022

What should I not do in Witcher 3? ›

7 Selling To The Wrong Merchants

Throughout the game, you will need to sell some of the gear you're no longer using. And thankfully, many merchants in the world of The Witcher will buy your unwanted items. However, not all of them are willing to spend the same amount of coin.

Is Witcher 3 harder than Dark Souls? ›

The Witcher 3 is harder than Skyrim but easier than Dark Souls - unless you venture into permadeath territory.. As mentioned previously, Dark Souls 3 has a higher minimum required GFX card requirement than Witcher 3 according to Steam's stats.

Is The Witcher 3 harder than Bloodborne? ›

5 Bloodborne

Bloodborne is one of the most difficult and darkest games of its genre. You'll face numerous bosses, whereas The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt has fewer bosses that pose a problem. Technically speaking, Dettlaff from The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt's Blood and Wine DLC is more difficult than anything in Bloodborne.

Does it matter who you sleep with Witcher 3? ›

Essentially there are multiple Witcher 3 romance choices with just about anyone who wants you. However, do not try to romance both Yennefer and Triss - you have to pick one, or otherwise they'll find out and you'll lose both. That's pretty much the only restriction to The Witcher 3 romances.

Should I keep junk or sell Witcher 3? ›

In The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, junk items return. This time, however, some junk items can be dismantled into useful crafting components. As junk items have weight, it is better to either sell or dismantle them when available.

Is there a wrong way to play Witcher 3? ›

There aren't any major realism factors you need to keep in mind when playing The Witcher 3. You have to be concerned about breathing while swimming, but that's mostly it. If you want to go hard, rely on meditation for healing, eat and drink throughout the day, and always use monster oils.

What should I play first in The Witcher 3? ›

You won't miss much if you start from Witcher 3. There's a few characters that have side quests that you'll be confused on, but it's not that big of a deal. All of the important plot from Witcher 2 is given to you at the beginning of Witcher 3. Witcher 3 is better looking, much longer, and a bit more casual friendly.

How do you get overpowered early in The Witcher 3? ›

To become OP in early game is invest on sign tree, get the griffin school technique skill and using griffin armor set so your sign intensity is high enough. You can then Aard, enemy KO, 1 hit instant death. That's why the first scavenger quest available in Velen is the Griffin set.

What should I level first in The Witcher 3? ›

It all depends on your playstyle. For me, I invested in 'sun and stars' (or something in the likes) so I regain health during the day and stamina at night. On top of that, I went for Quen to get that second tier skill. And my third option was directed towards fast attacks.

How easy is Witcher 3 easy mode? ›

Easy - "For novice gamers. Combat is easier. Alchemy is not required to survive". Medium - "Intermediate level recommended for most gamers.

Is The Witcher 3 hard? ›

While Witcher 3 is undeniably a modern classic, it's fairly easy to get through the entire story without using many skills beyond Geralt's two swords, so long as players are generally skilled at the combat.

Is it okay to play The Witcher 3 first? ›

You won't miss much if you start from Witcher 3. There's a few characters that have side quests that you'll be confused on, but it's not that big of a deal. All of the important plot from Witcher 2 is given to you at the beginning of Witcher 3. Witcher 3 is better looking, much longer, and a bit more casual friendly.

Is Witcher 3 demanding? ›

Choosing the Best Settings for The Witcher 3

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is an extremely demanding game. If you are having trouble getting a smooth frame rate, lowering the graphical settings should help.


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