Dresden N7307,788 (179,150)USA

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Aug
24
READING GUIDE: WITCHER & METRO
There are unique qualities in common between these two literary franchises, the most prominent being their shared Eastern European heritage. And oddly enough, both having successful and faithful video game adaptions. Not tie-ins, but legitimate bodies of work that extend their stories. Below is a general overview and suggested reading order for those who love the games and are curious about delving into the original works.

THE WITCHER SERIES (Andrzej Sapkowski)

1) The Last Wish - a collection of short stories introducing the professional monster slayer, Geralt of Rivia, in a world where monsters roam as beasts and more often than not, as humans.
2) Sword of Destiny - a second short story anthology that ends with Geralt's adoption of Ciri--an exceptional and talented child whose fate is intertwined with his.
3) Blood of Elves - the first novel in a five-part saga that primarily revolves around Ciri as the machinations of powerful figures threaten her life.
4) Time of Contempt - Geralt and Ciri are engulfed in a conspiracy that serves as a prelude to hostilities beyond measure.
5) Baptism of Fire - separated from Ciri, Geralt follows her trail while war rages all around.
6) Tower of the Swallow - Ciri endures tragedy and torment at the hands of her enemies while Geralt and his motley crew of outcasts continue their search.
7) Lady of the Lake - surviving everything fate can throw at them, Geralt and Ciri are sent into a final confrontation with their shared adversaries. The last part of the five-book saga.
8) Season of Storms - a standalone novel describing Geralt's misadventures following the theft of his swords. Takes place before the saga but should be read after.

The games by CD Projekt are a direct continuation of the novels. The matter of their canonicity depends on who you ask, but I view them as faithful to the source material with artistic liberties kept to a minimum.

The Witcher - set five years after Lady of the Lake, Geralt pursues secrets stolen from his guild while navigating in a world that he does not remember.
The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings - Geralt, still plague by amnesia, is framed for regicide. In his pursuit of the real culprit, he discovers the murders are a harbinger to something far worse.
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt - with his memories restored but premonitions haunting his dreams, Geralt braves the war-torn lands to find his family.

THE METRO SERIES (Dmitry Glukhovsky)

The trilogy of novels and three games share an interesting connection. With the exception of 2033, the games by 4A take place in between the books albeit with some significant differences regarding the canon. This is akin to the departures of plot and character as seen when comparing A Song of Ice and Fire to HBO's Game of Thrones. That said, you could read the books and play the games together to tell a mostly coherent story.

1) Metro 2033 - after a nuclear holocaust, the remnants of humanity survive underground in the Moscow Metro. A young man named Artyom seeks out help to save his station from an insidious threat. The game of the same name is an adaption of the novel, although only the "Ranger" ending is canon in all instances.
2) Metro 2034 - this novel follows a traumatized Hunter, the man who originally sent Artyom on his mission, as he fights to contain the spread of a disease and save what remains of his soul.
3) Metro: Last Light - Artyom longs for absolution as the Metro's political factions vie for control of a military bunker, and civil war threatens to extinguish all life underground. Only the game's "Redemption" ending is canon, but in a heavily modified state for the following novel.
4) Metro 2035 - in the third and final book, Artyom obsesses over discovering proof of life beyond Moscow and uncovers a truth that changes his understanding of the world.
5) Metro Exodus - Artyom leads a caravan in search of a new home on the surface. The game is currently in production with a February 2019 release date.
Posted by Dresden N7 on 24 August 17 at 10:38 | Last edited on 11 July 18 at 11:51 | There are 4 comments on this blog post - Please log in to comment on this blog.

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