I think the writing in Witcher 3 is as good as the Mass Effect games, which I hold as the gold standard in game world-building, dialogue and, well, pathos. If anything the bleak world of W3 makes it even richer; some of the side missions are stunning, and heart-breaking.
I must admit I played it (and Blood & Wine, which is just as good) on easy. It's still a wee bit of a challenge combat wise -- you need level up -- but otherwise you can focus on the story and the quests. After Bloodborne and Dark Souls 3, I wasn't hungry for more balls-hard swordplay, and I just rebelled in that world.