Game devs are sharing some of their proudest tiny additions to the games they've worked on, and for one Witcher 3 dev, it's all about that time Geralt got high and started talking to animals.
"In the quest where Geralt takes mushrooms and talks to his horse, I also attached voicesets and talk interactions to all the other animals in the area so that they'd have lines too," quest designer Patrick K. Mills says on Twitter. "Each animal is distinct. The wolf has a northern accent, the cow is a Beauclair noblewoman, the cat is rude, etc. This wasn't my idea but was suggested by quality assurance. Listen to QA!"
Mills is talking about the Equine Phantoms quest, which is part of the Blood and Wine DLC. If you've played the quest, you'll probably remember the extensive conversations you can have with Roach, but it's easy to miss all the bits of dialog you can hear from the other animals in the quest area. You can see it all in the video below. Skip to the 10:29 mark if you want to hear the animal conversations.
It's easy to underestimate the value of details like these in making games great - after all, nobody's going to buy a copy of The Witcher 3 just because of one quest where you get high and hear talking animals. (Probably, anyway.) But for me, those little touches are what separate the merely 'good' games from the all-timers that really stick in my mind.
I'm in love with playing a Druid in Baldur's Gate 3, and it's partly because you can talk to animals whenever you want.