Cyberpunk 2077 has ended up in a huge debacle for game studio CD Projekt Red. One week after its launch, Sony decided to remove the game from its PlayStation Store. The game in which hundreds of millions of euros have been put was still unfinished. There are so many mistakes in it, Sony no longer wants to sell it. One of the most expensive and hypete games of recent years threatens to end up in a flop.
After appearing last week, a lot of things turned out to be wrong: cars drove through buildings, characters reacted strangely and there was a proliferation of small trees in places where they didnt belong.
Another remarkable mistake was a penis glitch. Gamers saw the sex of their character appear through the pants.
“ That mistake is actually illustrative of whats wrong with this game,” says game journalist Len Maessen. “In the beginning of Cyberpunk, you can design the character you play with. You can also adjust the size of the penis, but that has a zero effect on the rest of the game. The place downstairs never comes bared in the picture. It was probably conceived once because gamers would find it funny, but that thought was never finished.”
Eight years ago, the game studio CD Projekt Red announced the game Cyberpunk 2077. Since then, it has been eagerly awaited by gamers. The Polish studio is the creator of The Witcher 3, one of the most popular games ever created. For that reason CD Projekt Red was regarded as one of the best gaming studios in the world until last week. Even before the release, eight million copies of Cyberpunk had already been sold, accounting for some 480 million euros in sales. Now Sony is going to repay the customers their money.
High pressure during development
During the development, the game studio made more and more promises. The futuristic game, in which you perform criminal chores as a mercenary, would be distinctive with more and more features and possibilities. This makes it possible to hack other players and modify your character in detail. Due to the fact that the studio had so much on the neck, Cyberpunk was postponed for appearance three times. As a result, gamers ran out of patience. Threats to the creators followed.
Also shareholders of CD Projekt Red would have increased the pressure; they would now want to cash after years of investing. In addition, production costs for a game of this size are huge. Just before Christmas, most games are sold annually. Waiting longer, probably would have meant a loss of sales. “There were already so many pre-orders sold. Thats why they played even on release. They probably thought that they would fix the mistakes gradually”, says Maessen.
Nevertheless, the game studio will also not be pleased with this result, says Alessandra of Otterlo, owner of trade magazine Control, for game developers. “CD Projekt Red has a huge reputation, and as a developer you just dont want this. This game has been waiting for a long time and you want to make players happy. But for many people this game is not or hardly playable. Thats really extreme.”
Website Gamespot collected the biggest mistakes in the game in a video:
In order to be able to market the game, there has been a lot of overtime over the past few months. 80 hour working weeks were allegedly the norm at the company. “This happens more often with games towards the release date. It is one of the biggest problems in the gaming industry,” says Maessen. Theres even a term for it: crunching. “Creators are expected to work late in the last months. The pressure is tremendous. There is a lot of attention to it, and game studios promise not to allow it any longer, but Cyberpunk did it again. Despite promises from CD Projekt Red not to do this.”
The debacle around Cyberpunk is now seen as an example of what is currently going wrong in the game industry. If even one of the most important studios in the world can not deliver, are the expectations too high? It is invariably impossible to continue delivering what is promised in a short period of time. However, a solution does not seem to be immediately available.
Years to More
For years, the development of the big blockbuster games is already going this way. Smaller games often went wrong, but never with a game with these sky-high expectations.
According to Maessen, it may take a while before Cyberpunk is really finished. “CD Projekt Red can come up with it. But then they will have to put their shoulders down in the next few years – thats how long it will take – to do that.” For the studio, the question is whether gamers and shareholders can have the patience again.