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‘The Witcher': Netflix Releases Interactive Map, Which(er) Includes Detailed Timeline of Events

You know, in case you’re still super confused by the many locations and multiple timelines

To say that the world of Netflix’s “The Witcher” is large and complicated would be an understatement. It’s clear that the streaming service knows that, seeing as it has released an interactive map to help you understand both where and when the events of its Henry Cavill-led series, based on the fantasy novels by Andrzej Sapkowski, take place.

You can find that map of The Continent — and beyond — here.

“The Witcher,” which launched Dec. 20, follows the stories of monster hunter Geralt of Rivia (Cavill), sorceress Yennefer (Anya Chalotra) and young princess Ciri (Freya Allan). A serious way the show departs from the books is by introducing all of those characters at the same time by utilizing three different timelines to tell their stories.

We at TheWrap understand this can be confusing — even to those viewers who read the books — so we spoke to showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissrich about why she chose to lay out her TV adaptation this way.

“What was important to me is starting off and making sure that we understood who Geralt was and who Ciri was, and then, in Episode 2, who Yennefer was,” Hissirch told TheWrap. “And one of our early decisions we made was actually just to introduce Geralt and Ciri in Episode 1 and to hold Yennefer for Episode 2 for that exact reason. There’s only so much you can take in. And I want to make sure that what I call the ‘bells and whistles of fantasy’ — the monsters and the magic and the violence and battles and sexuality — all of those things we expect from high fantasy, that those don’t take up the room of actual character development. We need to let the characters live and breathe in this world a little bit. That was one of the reasons we structured the story that way.”

Hissrich said she chose to use multiple timelines without explaining that there were multiple timelines because she “wanted viewers who weren’t familiar with ‘The Witcher’ to be able to watch the first episode and believe they could be happening on the same timeline.”

“There’s a couple of hints in the first episode that we’ve got some interesting things happening with time, but unless you’re paying a lot of attention or know what you’re looking for, they could easily pass you as little bits of dialogue,” she said. “Because I didn’t want to force a viewer, especially a new fan, to be working that hard, I just want them to enjoy the first episode. It’s sort of as if you’re thrown into the deep end already with all the characters and all the places, I didn’t want to have to enforce that they were working on different timelines, too.”