Stop me if you’ve heard this one: CD Projekt Red is very sorry but it’s not going to bother with multiplayer for Cyberpunk 2077 after all.
Yeah, it’s a story we’ve all heard before. The company initially planned multiplayer for the 2021 title and strung multiplayer fans along from as long ago as 2013, culminating in hints that multiplayer would be a “standalone product” when it did release. But it became very clear by spring of 2021 that multiplayer was never realistically going to happen, as CDPR said that its new “systematic and agile approach” to game development would mean that instead of “focusing on one big online experience or game,” it was working on tech that would bring all of its titles online in the future “without any great technological debt.” We were so confident that multiplayer was toast that we stopped covering it altogether as irrelevant to the MMO genre and orbiting games.
Apparently, we were quite right to do so. Eurogamer has a new interview up with CDPR’s acting narrative director, Philipp Weber, who appears to have admitted that plans for multiplayer were essentially tanked when CDPR realigned its priorities toward fixing the single-player version of the game, which readers will also recall was a mess at launch and even sparked lawsuits. “[T]he switch of priorities meant that other R&D projects had to go away,” Weber says. “With Cyberpunk, we wanted to do many things at the same time, and we just needed to really focus and say, ‘Okay, what’s the important part? Yeah, we will make that part really good.'”
In any case, it’s less a revelation for multiplayer fans and more confirmation that any hope you harbored is misplaced.