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The Gwent closed beta is now underway

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Prepare the celebratory hot tub, because CD Projekt has announced that the closed beta test for the Witcher-based collectible card game Gwent is now underway. The first wave of invitations have been sent out, but don't fret if you don't receive one, because more will be coming in future waves. 

"Gwent is an example of how the community can have actual impact on game developers. What we created as a part of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is now, because of your involvement, a standalone game and a totally different experience that firmly stands on its own,” CD Projekt senior community coordinator Marcin Momot said. “The closed beta is another step in the process―you can now help us shape the game into something you can call your own." 

The full release of Gwent will include "a fully featured single-player adventure," but the closed beta will only offer multiplayer action. It's expected to run until the spring in 2017, although that's "only a rough estimate," the closed beta FAQ says. "We have only one goal with the entire beta and that's to make Gwent as fun an experience as possible. We'll come out of beta when we have a game we think is honest, fun, and well-balanced." 

The FAQ also answers what is, when you think about it, a pretty obvious question: Why is there a need to test Gwent at all, since it was already playable in The Witcher 3? "While the core of the game remains the same, Gwent: The Witcher Card Game is much more than the game you used to play in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt," is the answer. "This includes in-game assets like card art, card voice-overs and even skills, and what's even more important, it features a competitive PvP mode we built from scratch. That's why we need to beta test it and we would really appreciate your help in this regard." 

If you haven't yet signed up for the Gwent beta test, you can do so at Find out more about how it all works in our hands-on preview

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.