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.
Imagine that one day you wake up, stumble to your computer, and check in on the morning news. Among the various tidbits is a rather surprising notice of a brand-new MMORPG that is not only in the works, but is on the verge of beta testing right the heck now. Would that be enough of a shock to wipe away any vestiges of sleep and generate immediate interest in this title?
For some players during a very short period in 2001, it definitely was.
The game in question is Fallen Age, an isometric MMO that made headlines by announcing its presence in one breath and imminent beta testing in the next. However, Netamin Communication’s game couldn’t quite live up to that promise, and by the end of the year, it had vanished almost as quickly as it arrived. So what was this game and what exactly happened?
I am a generally big fan of the cyberpunk genre, especially when it works in a healthy dose of ’80s aesthetics for that clunky, neon flair. But when it comes to MMORPGs, good cyberpunk titles are extremely few and far between.
I think we have a bit of it in Neocron and Anarchy Online, and of course The Matrix Online was jacked into cyberpunk back when it was running. Now a-days there is a lot of excitement over CD Projekt Red’s Cyberpunk 2077, although we know very little about it other than it’ll have some sort of online functionality.
Are we due for a good cyberpunk MMO? Do you think that there’s a good audience out there for it and that it would appeal to a great number of gamers? For a bonus question, what would you like to see included in such a title?
One of Otherland’s most iconic locations just got a massive overhaul in this week’s Patch 5.6.63, kicking off the first update for the game in 2018.
This large patch reworked three areas of the game: the Lambda Mall, Bad Sector, and Lantern District. This was done “to increase the overall enjoyability of these zones.” When players log in, they will enjoy a massive visual overhaul of the areas, numerous quest and script improvements, and “major improvements” to the framerate and performance.
Reworking underperforming game elements is a current focus for the team, as the members are also working on a complete rebuild and redesign of the title’s currently poor user interface.
Following a single “beep” of Twitter activity last week, CD Projekt Red’s Cyberpunk 2077 holds the rapt attention of gamers across the world who are eager to see development on this long-awaited sci-fi game. They might not have to wait too, too long.
Polish game news site GRYOnline revealed that Cyberpunk 2077 will be coming to E3 in June with a playable demo and a new trailer. The information allegedly comes from two trusted but unnamed sources.
“We’ve recently learned that the Warsaw-based studio will fly to Los Angeles with a fully playable demo that will be available for journalists and other media representatives behind closed doors,” the site said. “Until CD Projekt Red officially announces that Cyberpunk 2077 will be shown during E3, there is absolutely no certainty that this will happen. However, we strongly believe that our sources are right.”
It was the beep heard ’round the world.
Cyberpunk 2077’s Twitter account, which has laid dormant since December 2013, suddenly came alive today with a single word. Considering the reputation of CD Projekt Red and the long-standing secrecy over the highly anticipated multiplayer game, the tweet instantly galvanized a community and whipped up speculation that we could be hearing a lot more about the sci-fi title — or even seeing it this year.
The game was originally announced back in 2012 with a couple of teasers and some scant information, including the fact that it would contain some sort of online component. However, ever since 2013 CD Projekt Red has been incredibly quiet on Cyberpunk 2077’s status, emerging only to say that the game was still being made and that it won’t have an abusive business model. PCGamesN has a great summary of everything we know about the project to date, but here’s hoping that we’ll be learning a lot more very soon.
Here’s the short rundown on Otherland’s UI: It’s terrible and the developers know it. Unfortunately, for a long stretch of the game’s current management, it’s been allowed to remain terrible simply because redesigning it is a big chunk of work that the team hasn’t actually had the time or manpower to swing. But now the team is sitting down to do the hard work necessary to actually make for a good and usable UI, starting over from the ground up.
The plan is to not simply reskin the old interface but completely redesign it, as the team shows off in the first few preview images. This also gives the design team the opportunity to add new elements to the UI to make the game easier to play on top of prettier to look at. It’s not new content, but it is the sort of thing that makes existing content more satisfying to play through, so it’s ultimately a net win.
It’s the distant future. The high-tech battle armor you wear sharply contrasts with the ruins of civilization that you traverse. You spot an enemy and raise your pulse rifle, firing off shots as you strafe to cover. Technology hasn’t solved the issue of war; it’s just raised the body count.
PlanetSide 2? Nope — this is Neocron, the quite-forgettable MMOFPS from the way-back era. I like to call it “that game with the most regrettable cover art in the history of video games,” but that isn’t quite as snappy.
Going into this article, I have to admit that I previously knew absolutely nothing about Neocron other than the fact that it was a sci-fi MMO that vaguely reminded me of Anarchy Online. Oh, also the fact that nobody I know or perhaps ever will know played it. Was it just a myth? A practical joke to make us believe in an MMO phantom? Only sifting through layers of dust and grime would produce results, so I rolled up my sleeves and started digging.
It’s true that we lost a lot of MMOs in 2016 — bigger and more important ones than in 2014 and 2015. 2017, however, has been a different sort of beast. The list is long, and while it’s painful for those whose games are gone, the genre didn’t lose many major MMOs this past year. And that startles me.
Marvel Heroes was surely the most dramatic of all the sunsets, given that it shut down early without notice. Earlier in the year, we saw Daybreak put an end to Landmark after less than a year of live operation, while Turbine let the Asheron’s Call franchise go, Firefall formally closed, Club Penguin’s sunset broke the internet, and NCsoft called it quits with Master X Master. A number of other MMOs simply halted development – Perpetuum, Sword Coast Legends, and SkySaga being the most prominent of those. And on a more positive note, there were a few sunsetted MMOs that were revivified, including Otherland, Uncharted Waters Online, and RaiderZ.
Farewell, old friends.
CD Projekt Red is definitely increasing the profile of its sci-fi open world RPG as of late after years of mostly silent development. After confirming that Cyberpunk 2077 is being made and would have online elements, the studio mentioned on Twitter that it won’t be delving into shady tactics that it sees plaguing other games:
“When thinking [Cyberpunk 2077], think nothing less than [The Witcher 3] — huge single player, open world, story-driven RPG. No hidden catch, you get what you pay for — no bullshit, just honest gaming like with Wild Hunt. We leave greed to others.”
Cyberpunk 2077 is looking to pick up some new talent, too. CD Projekt Red has posted dozens of job openings for the game, including artists, a lead gameplay designer, an open world designer (tasked with “keeping high quality of sandbox content in game”), and a network programmer (“helping in design and implementation of multiplayer changes to existing systems”).
When science fiction writers pictured the world of tomorrow back in the mid-’80s, they pictured some things that definitely have not caught on in ubiquity (bulky VR headsets, neon everything, phasing out daylight in favor of rainy nights all day every day). But the whole idea of constantly interconnected computers? They got that. So it seems appropriate that the upcoming Cyberpunk 2077 from CD Projekt Red (best known for The Witcher series) will include some form of online component.
Company CEO Adam Kicinski has said in a recent interview that an online component is recommended and/or necessary in order to achieve long-term success in the video game marketplace. What that online component may be remains to be seen, as it could be anything from a multiplayer mode to lockboxes to just being a full online co-op game. You can check out the video interview just below, but it is in Polish, so you’ll want to turn on subtitles if that’s not a language you speak.
Massively OP’s Justin Olivetti has a provocative article on his personal gaming blog, Bio Break, this week on MMORPG housing.
“I once again wonder why open world housing is this holy grail that some players and developers seem hellbent on chasing,” he writes. “It’s an ideal, a beautiful mirage couched in the notion of players inhabiting the very world they play, allowing them to stroll through neighborhoods of fellow adventurer’s homes and basking in the connectivity of it all. Yet it’s a failed experiment, one that is proven time and again to have far more drawbacks than benefits.” After listing off his complaints with the mechanic, he ultimately concludes that “we simply don’t need fixed open world housing, even in sandboxes.”
But being Justin, he also asked for feedback on why the joys are worth the drawbacks – and how to fix the system so it works instead of running off the rails. That’s just what we’ll do in this week’s Overthinking. Is he right about not needing this type of housing? And if not, how would you fix open world housing?
Considering the sparse information that has been released about CD Projekt Red’s perhaps-an-MMO Cyberpunk 2077 over the last four years, it’s easy to assume that the game has long been abandoned. However, the studio asserted this week that it has a good reason for being closed-lipped about the project, saying that it takes time to “reinvent the wheel” and innovate with new games.
The Witcher 3 studio was prompted to make an official response about the game following public concerns over alleged poor morale and high turnover behind the scenes. CD Projekt Red said that instead of shrinking, the studio is now double the size that it was in 2015 and is still hiring. And best of all, CD Projekt Red confirmed that Cyberpunk 2077 is still being made and has the backing of the studio.
“Cyberpunk 2077 is progressing as planned, but we are taking our time — in this case, silence is the cost of making a great game,” the studio said. You can read the full letter concerning the project after the break.