Cyberpunk 2077’s CD Projekt Red takes a stand against lockboxes and unfinished games

The studio behind The Witcher 3 and Cyberpunk 2077 isn’t mincing words when it comes to business practices that involve lockboxes and partially delivered games.

“If you buy a full priced game, you should get a big, polished piece of content, which gives you many, many hours of fun gameplay,” said Co-Founder Marcin Iwiński. “The moment [the community] feels you are reaching out for their wallet in any unfair way, they will be vocal about it. And — frankly speaking — I think it’s good for the industry. Things often look great from a spreadsheet perspective, but decision makers often aren’t asking themselves the question of ‘How would gamers feel, or is this offer a fair one?’ Gamers are striking back, and I really hope this will change our industry for the better.”

Iwiński said that the studio is focusing on its sci-fi game instead of another Witcher title: “In terms of big RPGs, it’s time for Cyberpunk 2077.” He admitted that the game is “a huge responsibility” but that the studio will step up to the challenge and deliver.

Fans should be able to hear about and see more of Cyberpunk 2077, as the title is widely rumored to be coming to this year’s E3 in June.

Source: PC Gamer
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41 Comments on "Cyberpunk 2077’s CD Projekt Red takes a stand against lockboxes and unfinished games"

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Brother Maynard

Oh, and one more thing… This bit is taken from CDPR’s corporate strategy (https://www.cdprojekt.com/en/capital-group/strategy/):

How we want to develop our business

– We are convinced that one can remain commercially successful without sacrificing the creative vision to business calculation.

– Quality is the foundation of our long-term strategy and development plans. We do not seek easy profit and are not interested in taking shortcuts. We focus on ambitious plans with the potential to achieve global impact, and we make no compromises in pursuing them.

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Rolan Storm

o7

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Brother Maynard

It’s nothing new, CDPR simply stick to their strategy and with the current state of the gaming industry people find it too hard to believe. Regardless of gamers’ cynicism, CDPR do have a long track record on delivering on this strategy.

Here’s an older video interview with Iwinski where he mentions a lot of the stuff discussed in this new PC Gamer article.

Skip to around 17:00 for the more relevant bits – though I recommend watching the whole interview, it’s a nice peek inside CDPR’s thinking.

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Zora

Stop the presses, James… was there ever a hint that they might have continued in the adventures of our stoic womanizer or his fellow accomplices?

I took for granted that the story was concluded for good, the two DLC proven you could tell more surely but overall I gotten the impression they felt there simply was not enough material to make another game?

Regardless, glad to hear they want to focus on this new one… albeit both, I wouldn’t say no to either!

Valen Sinclair
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Valen Sinclair

I know the Witcher games were fantastic, but I really am not a fantasy guy so never played them. Very excited about 2077 though.

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rafael12104

*sniff* *sniff*

Give me a moment here… I have something in my eye. *sniff*

So, here it is my fellow gamers. Now, I grant it may be bullshit to sell a game, but at a minimum it shows that not all devs are oblivious. Loot boxes aside,

“but decision makers often aren’t asking themselves the question of ‘How would gamers feel… is this offer fair…”

Nailed it, brother. You want consumer loyalty? You want good brand recognition? You want to sell your damn game service? That is the answer.

It is common sense isn’t it? And how odd is it that EA and Activision seem to directly contradict that simple maxim.

Kudos, CD Projekt Red! You are saying all the right things. Live up to it and you will have my loyalty. Hell, you my patronage now because of the excellence in all aspects of Witcher III.

When devs do the right thing?

Bryan-Cranston-Tearing-Up-Happy-Feelings-During-Interview-Gif.gif
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Brother Maynard

So, here it is my fellow gamers. Now, I grant it may be bullshit to sell a game

Iwinski has been saying this for years and the rest of his company as well. What’s more important, from CDPR it’s not just words, as far as their players and fans are concerned – they started with it a long time before Witcher 3. Their whole business strategy (including GOG) is built around this philosophy.

It started already with Witcher 1 and its free bonus content and got even crazier with Witcher 2, which was offering tons of extra content for free (it’s almost 9 GB of extra stuff). W3 merely continued with the same philosophy. It’s simply the enormous success of W3 that made this approach much more visible.

Considering the state of the gaming business these days, I’m not at all surprised that people are suspicious of every developer that makes this kind of statements. EA, Activision, Ubisoft and other monsters out there have managed to thoroughly corrupt the community…

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Alberto

Keep in mind how cheap labor is where CD projekt is located, they hire tons of Uni students for pennies compared to the other big studios so they can get a lot of Done for very little compared to a Western EU or US company. So they are able to make “Stands against Greed” like this. Its great PR for them.

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Mateusz Pachnik

Cheap labor overall yes, but not in programming department.
Overall whole IT sector is a lot more profitable then the rest.
I live in Poland currently and your argument about the “pennies” in games development part is a BS one…
It is not a Actiblizz/EA level but those are not “pennies” even for western EU standards.

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Armsbend

The new black for developers seems to be announcing that you are taking a stand against gambleboxes. I’ll believe their words when they stop becoming lies – which will be years from this day.

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Brother Maynard

In CDPR’s case this is not just words or a calculated PR reaction to the current anti-lockbox mood among the players. They’ve been delivering on this for many years, both in their games and with their GOG platform.

Take a look at the corporate section of CDPR’s website, in particular their strategy document and within it the CDPR group philosophy section.

https://www.cdprojekt.com/en/capital-group/strategy/

Estranged
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Estranged

Arms, you have taken on WoW. So, have you played these Witcher games?

This company is legit. They over deliver.

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Stropp

So far CDPR have stayed true to their word. AFAIK there are no lockboxes in the Witcher games.

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Kayweg

Fair enough, i have grown somewhat cynical myself over time.
Mind you, this is the same CDPR that always has taken a strong stand against DRM too.
So imo they do have some credibility to draw from.

Korithian
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Korithian

If they can make it as atmospheric as the Witcher was I will be looking forward to exploring the world of Cyberpunk 2077. That they are looking to ensure value for money can only add to this as opposed to gambling lock boxes with a 0.3% chance of getting something that isn’t junk.

Alli
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Alli

Is this supposed to be an MMO?

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Crowe

No.

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Tithian

They said it’ll be a typical RPG with a huge main story quest, but they also said it will have an online mode on the side. No one knows what that mode is going to be. Maybe PvP arenas?

Alli
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Alli

If that’s the case, I much prefer create-your-own-character RPGs than the “here, play as this guy” model.

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connor_jones

Definitely. That’s why I never played Witcher.

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zoward

Ditto. However, I’m a huge fan of GOG. And I’m looking forward to 2077.

hurbster
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hurbster

You’ll be making your own character.

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Castagere Shaikura

Yeah just another open world pvp game with lack of content. These devs talk out the sides of their mouths about what they plan to do. Remember GW2 and what those guys said. That’s what i remember when one of these guys spew this stuff.

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Brother Maynard

Where on earth did you get this nonsense? Literally every statement in your post is a complete rubbish that has nothing to do with what CDPR have said about CP2077.

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Peter Couse

Ok I did my 20 minutes of Google search and can’t find anything about open world PvP. Can you help a brotha out? I’m not doubting, since most people know more than me about gaming, I just can’t find anything.

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Brother Maynard

Don’t bother searching for it, the “open world pvp game with lack of content” post has nothing to do with reality.

François Verret
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François Verret

I don’t think that theory is grounded in reality. All they’ve said is some kind of online component. Smart money is on something akin to Dark Souls, at least in my opinion.

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A Dad Supreme

Yeah just another open world pvp game with lack of content.

Oh my. I didn’t know that about this game. I was thinking more along the lines of The Witcher.

Interest lost.

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Stropp

Oh my. I didn’t know that about this game. I was thinking more along the lines of The Witcher.

Interest lost.

You should ignore that. They guy doesn’t know what he’s talking about. CP2077 is an RPG. If there’s PvP in it, it won’t be the main game. You’ll still have the main storyline and probably a couple of DLCs later with additional campaigns.

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Brother Maynard

It is very much planned to be like Witcher 3 (much bigger, though), focusing on the world, story and character development.

This time around they are experimenting with some online aspects, but chances of it being an MMO are essentially zero. Most likely there will be an online gameplay, possibly through a lobby system and perhaps a hub – but that’s already entering a bit the world of speculation.

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rafael12104

You aren’t wrong. It is basically their next iteration of a Witcher III type game but in a new world. No one know exactly what the online aspect will be. But it is pretty clear this will not be a MMORPG in the traditional sense. I mean, there is no way it will be “massive”.

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A Dad Supreme

I don’t believe so.

It wouldn’t be smart to mess up the formula which is The Witcher as a single-player game and then try to produce an MMO when the studio doesn’t have any real experience in doing that as a company.

At best the most you can hope for probably is that the game has one of those pseudo “multi-player modes” where a few other people can shoot at you/vice versa.

That said, I’m all for another deep, immersive single-player RPG. Those seem to be the most reliable form of constant fun/entertainment these days for me vs the travesty MMOs have become, and I’m actually okay with plunking down $60 without blinking an eye for them.

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wratts

Probably my most anticipated title of the moment, and I don’t even really gravitate towards the genre. CD Projekt Red has been both so creative, and so reliable, with The Witcher franchise, that they get at least two big f-ups credit from me.

François Verret
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François Verret

Now, all they have to do is to take a stand against crunch and I can love them without reservations.

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Iain B

Just about every industry has their version of crunch, game development is just vocal about it with their customers.

At law firms their version of crunch is trial prep and trial. You get little to no sleep for weeks

François Verret
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François Verret

That’s not a reason to accept it as the way things have to be and it shouldn’t keep us from wanting and asking for better practices.

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Iain B

Sometimes work is hard and stressful. That’s life. There are plenty of other jobs that don’t have time-critical, all-hands-on-deck types of deadlines.

I’m sure if you ask any developer they would still rather be doing what they love instead of something that don’t because it’s “easier”.

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Stropp

I’m sure if you ask any developer they would still rather be doing what they love instead of something that don’t because it’s “easier”.

There’s truth in that, but…

you can love your job. I do/have. I consider myself extremely fortunate having worked as a programmer for >30 years. I’ve been involved in a heap of projects, all of them challenging with interesting facets, even though none of them were game projects. I’ve often joked I’d still do the job even if they didn’t pay me. But…

even if you love your job you can burnout on it. Burning out will lead you to hate it. The easiest way to burnout is to overwork. I’ve done it a couple of times when a project turned into a death-march with lots of overtime (unpaid) lots of pressure from above, and lots of stress. I hated getting up in the morning, and was immensely relieved when the project was finally over.

Sure, every industry has crunch, but the game industry appears to suffer from it more than others. From what I read, it also appears that the game industry has a higher rate of burnout than others. For most game developers it’s not a long term career. They move into more stable and family friendly roles after a few years in gamedev.

That’s not a good way for any business to operate.

deekay_plus
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deekay_plus

and a stand for fair living wages for workers.

which apparently they have issues with. >>

hurbster
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hurbster

Cost of living much lower in Poland.

deekay_plus
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deekay_plus

and?