If you love playing games and travelling then you may sometimes wonder whether there is a destination on the planet that suits you perfectly. Could it be South Korea, Japan or maybe the UK?
Perhaps surprisingly, Poland is one of the finest places in the world for you to combine these two interests in one glorious trip. You may never have considered a gaming trip to Poland before but there are some very good reasons why this is something that you should think about planning before too long.
When you want a break that lets you enjoy gaming while soaking up a unique and captivating culture then there can be few places on Earth as suitable as Poland.
Discover Where The Witcher Was Set
The booming Polish gaming industry has grown massively in size in recent years. The most successful of the new games has arguably been The Witcher, which is an action-packed romp involving time-travelling monster hunters.
The Witcher has received glowing reviews for its stunning graphics and riveting gameplay, as well as picking up a number of prestigious awards. This game is based on the series of books of the same name by Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski and the atmospheric graphics evoke the landscape of medieval Poland beautifully.
When you travel to Poland you might wonder whether you can live out an adventure that lets you experience the feel of this game for real. The truth is that you can enjoy a trip here that includes a few tantalising glimpses of the on-screen world that has got so many people hooked on The Witcher.
One example of a place you could visit currently to get a feel for this game’s setting is the Mouse Tower in Kruszwica, which is said to have been the developers’ inspiration for the Towerful of Mice quest in the game. You will also find enthralling legends of dragons and other mythical creatures in towns and cities across the land.
Don’t be surprised to find other places that bring The Witcher to mind if you visit some of the fantastic medieval towns and villages that are so well preserved in Poland. Among them, you will find open-air museums and wooden architecture museums that recreate the old-fashioned lifestyle in places such as Sierpc and Maurzyce.
Medieval Krakow is a great place to get started, while the Old Town area of Gdansk brings with it the familiar sight of the cranes of Novigrad for gamers who have played this game. In the same way, you can expect to spot sights that bring to mind different parts of the game as you visit other regions around the country.
Wandering around an old castle or a cobbled street in Poland is one sure way to feel as though you are experiencing the thrill of living out the adventures that you have played your way through in The Witcher. All of this goes to show what a brilliantly designed and crafted game it really is.
Check Out the Landscapes and Buildings that inspired other Games
It may be the most popular but The Witcher is far from the only game that has been set in Poland in recent times. For example, many World War II games are located here, as it was one of the most important sites where battles, espionage, and other war-time activities took place.
The likes of Wolfenstein: The New Order, Call of Duty, and Velvet Assassin are among the games that have a Polish setting. Other titles that see the player travel to Polish territory are Darklands, Observer, and Gorky 17.
With Polish games developers now accounting for a large percentage of the new video games released each year, it seems safe to assume that more and more new games will be set here. Even the games that aren’t specifically set in this country can sometimes contain something that brings to mind the unique atmosphere and beauty of Poland.
If there is a video game from Poland that you particularly like then a little bit of online investigation should let you discover whether it is possible to visit the real-life landscapes and buildings that inspired them.
This might not be the main attraction in coming here but it is definitely something that it is worth taking into account if you are going to visit Poland and love playing games.
Play Your Favorite Online Games
When you head off for a trip abroad you might worry that you won’t be able to play your favorite online game once you arrive. This isn’t a problem on Poland, and you can access a massive variety of games here. For instance, you can play Steam games here and access pretty much all of the Flash games that you might play back home too.
Older people may tell you that in the past the only video games you could find were poorly pirated versions sold in places such as the old national stadium in Warsaw. It is fascinating to listen to stories like this from Polish gamers but the truth is that it is now as easy to buy original games here as it is anywhere else in the developed world.
These days you can find just about anything that takes your fancy in games stores and through online vendors. If there is a new game you have been itching to try then why wait till you go home to do so?
Also, there aren’t as many internet cafes here as there used to be but it is still possible to go and play games such as Counter-strike and Quake II in a group setting. This can be a fun way to feel part of a gaming community even when you are far from home.
It is also an inexpensive way to pass a couple of hours and maybe play a few older games that wouldn’t normally play on your own computer these days. You can certainly liven up any evening by going out and doing this rather than staying in your hotel room to watch cable TV.
If you prefer to play games for money then you will find that it is possible to log onto many of the best online casinos while you are here too. If you use bitcoins then you can even fund your betting in this way to avoid messy transfers and currency conversions while you are in Poland.
During 2017, the Polish authorities brought in new legislation and banished disreputable, illegal gambling sites while leaving only reputable, licensed sites in place. Therefore, you can access the likes of the Vegas Casino, where you get higher odds when you place lower probability bets on games such as roulette, with the aim of building up your bitcoin collection in style.
Take Part in a Gaming Event
You may already be aware that the Intel Extreme Masters event that was held in Katowice in March 2017 was the biggest esports gathering in history. Over 173,000 people attended the 5th annual gaming event here, which included a virtual reality demo showcase and other delights.
The 2018 event in Katowice will take place at the start of March and is sure to be another thrilling experience for gamers in Poland. For example. it will include the World Championships in a couple of different games (Counter-Strike and StarCraft II). These competitions will see a massive total of $750,000 up for grabs.
However, this isn’t the only gaming event that you will find in this country. In fact, there are plenty of events here for you to take in. From the Poznan Game Arena to the T-Mobile Warsaw Games Week and from Pixel Heaven to Digital Dragons, 2017 has been a year packed with gaming events.
The spectacular growth of gaming in this country means that it is highly likely that we see more of this kind of event pop up over time. If you like the idea of mixing some traditional sightseeing with a visit to a big gaming event then there are few better countries in which to do this right now.
Whether you want to take part in gaming competitions, look at exhibitions on the upcoming new titles or watch some of the world’s best players compete, this is a fantastic place to do it. It is definitely a good idea to see what events are due to happen when you are going to going to visit any of the major cities here.
You don’t have to be a hard-core gamer to visit these events, as you can have a lot of fun at them even if you are just a casual gamer. However, if you are more of a serious player then you will be in gaming heaven at any of these events.
Of course, it is also advisable that you set aside enough time to see some of the wonderful country as well. Wawel Castle, Wieliczka salt mines, and Bialowieza Forest are among the country’s top attractions that no visitor should miss out on while they are here.
Enjoy Improving Internet Speeds
Poland traditionally had a poor reputation for slow internet speeds and an expensive service. Thankfully, things have been getting a lot better here in the last few years and you can now look forward to enjoying a decent internet speed that lets you play without any hassles or delays.
You can now hook up to the internet and get fast, reliable connection in any city or town across Poland. As you would expect, you can use free Wi-Fi in many hotels, bars, and restaurants around the country too.
There are also numerous free Wi-Fi hotspots where you can get connected while you are here. You can get connected for free in the airports, in market squares, and in some of the most popular, central areas in cities such as Warsaw.
This makes it easy to grab a few games while you are out enjoying the sights, having something to eat or just passing the time and chilling out. There is no need to be stuck indoors with your laptop when you want a game, so why not take the opportunity to get out and see some sights while getting some on-screen action?
One thing to bear in mind is that if you are planning to stay here for a while then getting your own internet contract isn’t quite as easy as it is in some other countries. Poland is still among the most expensive countries in Europe for getting broadband and it is also typical for customers to be tied up on a fairly long contract.
Visitors from other parts of Europe should bear in mind that roaming charges in the European Union have been abolished. This means that you can use your data plan from the UK, France or elsewhere and make it stretch a lot further than it used to in the past.
Think About a Career in Video Game Development
At the time of writing, there are believed to be around 500 independent video games studios dotted around Poland. This makes it one of the most vibrant centers of games development on the planet right now.
Indeed, it is estimated that about a hundred new Polish games are released every year. Therefore, if you want to find a place to make a career in video game development then where better to do it than right here in Poland?
You can have a tremendous time visiting historic yet vibrant cities like Warsaw and Krakow while looking for the ideal opportunity to further your career. If you have games creation skills that you want to put to the test then the fast-moving and highly competitive market here is ideal for letting you do it.
Of course, you might feel most comfortable visiting as a tourist and getting a feel for the place first of all. If you do this then you will find a warm and welcoming country with friendly people who make you feel right at home.