The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is a widely-acclaimed, award winning RPG released in 2015. The game has an interesting mechanic of explaining the law of surprise from the perspective of Geralt protagonist protagonist’s superhuman senses and witcher magic abilities. If you are interested in this topic, Wikipedia provides an introduction to its origin.
The law of surprise is a concept that was introduced in the Witcher series. It states that “the more unexpected something is, the more powerful it will be.” This can be applied to real life as well.
The Witcher’s world is filled with magic, mystery, and, let’s be honest, Henry Cavill’s abs. Aside from Cavill’s Geralt, the series’ eponymous witcher, the limelight is shared by a number of other strong and compelling characters. Yennefer of Vengerberg, a fearsome witch and Geralt’s love interest, is among the primary cast, as is Cirilla, better known as “Ciri,” the crown princess of Cintra, who is said to possess unfathomable magical talents.
While the Netflix series and the 2015 popular game The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt have certain variations, there is a similar thread that runs through both that propels the narratives ahead and brings the characters closer together. Despite the grim fantasy world of Andrzej Sapkowski’s The Witcher novels, Sapkowski heavily employs a core notion found in many fantasy books, shows, and games: fate.
Destiny influences every character’s life in The Witcher, and it does it best via a custom known as the “rule of surprise.”
What Is “The Witcher’s” Destiny?
The first game in The Witcher series explains what fate is and what it means to the characters in Sapkowski’s fictional world. Destiny, according to the glossary page, is a “mysterious force” that decides the fate of everyone who has ever lived, is now living, or will ever live. If it seems bleak and deterministic, it’s because even believers in fate don’t think it’s absolutely unavoidable.
You may apparently choose whether to follow your fate or build your own path. Fighting against destiny is seen as an uphill struggle, similar to popular belief in contemporary society. Following your assigned destiny is simpler and less hazardous, since exercising free choice sometimes has negative effects.
Destiny appears in The Witcher novels, games, and movies in two key forms. The first is the rule of surprise, while the second comes in the shape of Geralt and Yennefer’s desires to a djinn.
How Does the Law of Surprise Work?
The Law of Surprise is a ritual “as ancient as mankind itself,” according to the history of The Witcher book series, a phrase that plays into the folkloric and even theological implications of the idea of fate. It’s usually used when someone saves someone else’s life. The Law of Surprise is offered by the rescued party, despite the fact that it is meant as a reward for the rescuer.
The rescuer may then claim the Law of Surprise when they state that they’re willing to give what the savior requests. In most cases, the claim is staked in two ways. The savior’s initial reaction is to declare, “I want the first thing that comes to welcome you.” Another way to put it is to state, “What you discover at home but don’t anticipate.”
It all sounds very mysterious, but try executing it in real life. “What you discover at home but don’t anticipate” may be a burned-down house, unwashed dishes left for you to clean by your roommates, or another person’s automobile parked in your place. That kind of thing happens in The Witcher’s universe as well.
Consider this scenario: you ask someone for the first thing that comes to mind when they arrive at their destination, but it’s their nagging parent, spouse, or in-law. It may also be a very pleased dog whose master has just signed away its fate. In the universe of The Witcher, “what you discover at home but don’t expect” to be a cheating spouse’s lover is another humorous example.
But what about in normal circumstances? As a consequence, the kid of the rescued person is the unanticipated reward.
In The Witcher world, here is where it all comes crashing down. It all begins when a mystery knight, after rescuing a king, claims the Law of Surprise.
How “The Witcher’s” World Is Shaped by the Law of Surprise
The Law of Surprise is first established in Netflix’s The Witcher episode four, “Of Banquets, Bastards, and Burials,” when a helmeted knight enters the throne chamber of Queen Calanthe, the Lioness of Cintra, who reigned as regent following her husband King Roegner’s death.
The unidentified knight says that he came in peace and simply snuck past the guards to talk with Queen Calanthe. As he kneels and announces himself as “Lord Urcheon of Erlenwald,” who is really the horrific monster Duny, the stone-faced queen stares. He describes how he came to marry Pavetta, Queen Calanthe’s and King Roegner’s daughter.
When Duny’s face is forcedly disclosed and Queen Calanthe orders her soldiers to execute him, he has no option but to declare Pavetta to be his prize under the Law of Surprise.
The thought that her husband gave their daughter to a humanoid hedgehog enrages Queen Calanthe for obvious reasons. But, as Eist argues, the Law of Surprise is far from a con.
What makes you think that trading a human life isn’t a kind of fraud? The Law of Surprise, according to Eist Tuirseach, is a “honest gamble” since none of the parties participating in the agreement knows what will be transferred between them. The stated surprise may be anything from a newborn puppy to princesses, like in Pavetta and Ciri’s case. I’ll get to it later.
Queen Calanthe, on the other hand, is not pleased. She has no tolerance for those in positions of authority that are larger than her own. In order to avoid having to pay back the loan, she tries to murder Duny anyhow. Debt never dies legally, and if it couldn’t die with King Roegner, it certainly wouldn’t die with Duny.
However, there is one essential aspect of this scenario that has left many viewers perplexed. In the midst of all the drama and enchantment surrounding Duny and Pavetta, there’s one scene after Duny stakes his claim that many viewers overlook.
Geralt moved in to break the shaft as one of the knights attempted to split Duny in two with a halberd, sparing Duny’s life in the process. Let’s put it this way: Duny’s life was spared by Geralt.
After Queen Calanthe accepts the Law of Surprise and Duny’s hedgehog curse is removed, he gives Geralt the opportunity to name any gift Duny has to offer. Geralt, with his snarky and caustic sense of humour, asserts the Law of Surprise in an irreverent manner. Pavetta vomit up as if on cue, and the contract with fate is made.
Geralt has a kid of his own: Ciri.
Is It Legal to Enforce the Law of Surprise in Real Life?
The Law of Surprise, believe it or not, also exists in the actual world. At the very least, it has existed in the past.
First, let’s look into the folkloric equivalents. What other tale has a cursed beast of a man reverting to his previous form after falling in love with a woman? You guessed correctly: Beauty and the Beast. It becomes considerably more explicit after that. Emmanuel Cosquin’s “Contes Populaires de Lorraine” has a rendition of the fable.
The book, which was published in 1887, has a narrative called “The White Wolf,” in which a man cursed to become a white wolf discovers a guy stealing a rose from his castle. The man begs the wolf not to kill him, and the wolf agrees on one condition: the guy must return home with the first person to welcome him.
Apart from folklore, the next issue is whether it can be enforced. The characters in the show, games, and literature refer to the Law of Surprise as a law, and they follow it out of habit and dread of fate punishing them for breaking their promise. Aside from that, the Law of Surprise is governed by common law, since there is no written black letter legislation to enforce it.
Thankfully, Amgen Legal, a real law practice situated in the United Kingdom, decodes it for us.
The Law of Surprise, according to what we know about it, is a kind of payment paid after a service is performed. Even if you assume that you may pay with other people’s lives or that there is a condition that it must not be a person’s life, there is still the issue of not knowing what is being agreed upon.
Despite Eist’s description of it as a fair agreement, genuine laws need clear phrasing. The Law of Surprise’s vagueness renders it subject to manipulation. Even if Geralt may have received a surprise kid, Duny could have shrugged and stated he kind of anticipated it, given that, despite The Witcher’s magic, Ciri is not a result of perfect conception.
There’s also the issue of when the contract becomes effective. Contracts are often characterized as “a meeting of minds,” which means that both parties agree on the conditions. The Law of Surprise, on the other hand, does not kick in until after the service has been provided and a person’s life has been spared. There is no previous arrangement that a life will be spared in return for an unknown object that will be waiting at the rescued person’s house.
So, how do things stand in other jurisdictions? A legal fiction known as a “quasi-contract” exists in US law. As you would expect, it’s a “quasi” contract since it’s not a legitimate contract. Quasi-contracts are legal fictions enforced by the government to avoid undue enrichment. This does not imply that one side takes advantage of the other.
When one party profits from something done for them by another without the provider being rewarded, this is known as unjust enrichment. When this occurs, the law forms a contract between the two parties in order to compensate the donor fairly.
In such circumstance, it makes no difference when the Law of Surprise was triggered since it becomes a quasi-contract that may be applied retrospectively and without both parties’ consent.
The Law of Surprise is a quasi-contract, and fate is a court of law, if you think about it that way.
But there’s another problem with the Law of Surprise, according to Amgen Law: it’s almost never a written contract. Fortunately, contracts in the United States do not necessarily have to be in writing. You’re okay to go as long as what’s being asserted in the Law of Surprise doesn’t come within the list of scenarios where the statute of frauds states that it must be in writing to be enforced.
In any event, Geralt’s claim to the Law of Surprise is greater than Duny’s. Geralt, on the other hand, seems to have witnesses to what is already a verbal commitment in The Witcher world. He has a whole hall full of them.
Aside from overly-complicated efforts at legal analysis of fiction, the Law of Surprise is undeniably a driving force in The Witcher universe. Let’s just be grateful that in real life, hyper-ambiguous quasi-contracts involving a sort of human trafficking don’t exist. I’m hoping for the best.
Any explanations of the legal applications of the Law of Surprise presented above are not and should not be construed as legal advice for legal reasons. Dealings with dubious hedgehog males should be avoided at all costs.
If any actual attorneys are reading this, please leave a comment below and tell us how you think the Law of Surprise might work or fail in your country!
The “the witcher law of surprise explained reddit” is a question asked by Reddit users. The Witcher series has a lot of interesting concepts, and this one about the law of surprise is no different.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is the law of surprise a real thing?
What happens when the Witcher claimed the law of surprise?
A: In the Witcher series, Geralt is a wizard as well as a monster hunter. He has been known to be able to kill his enemies with spells and surprise them by other means.
How did Geralt invoke the law of surprise?
A: Geralt didnt invoke the law of surprise, he just used it. There is a difference between invoking and using something.
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