CD Projekt

Interview: CD Projekt's CEO on Witcher 2 piracy, why DRM's still not worth it

Nathan Grayson at

Recently, I spoke with Bohemia Interactive's CEO about the three most reviled letters in the gaming alphabet: D, R, and M. His company has been making waves with tech that slowly renders pirated games unplayable with all manner of obnoxious, sometimes hilarious effects. From where Bohemia's standing, DRM's a necessary evil. No one ever said, however, that forcing thieves to pony up couldn't be worth a laugh or two.

But that's only one perspective. So, in the wake of the announcement that GOG's version of Witcher 2 made a sizable stack of real, non-Monopoly money without any sort of DRM weighing it down, I decided to get in touch with CD Projekt. Read on for CEO and co-founder Marcin Iwinski's thoughts on DRM schemes like Bohemia's, why we should get rid of DRM altogether, how many Witcher 2 copies were pirated, and how piracy can even occasionally be beneficial.


CD Projekt working on AAA title, could be sci-fi

Henry Winchester at

CD Projekt RED have told Polish gaming site Polygamia.pl that they’re working on a brand new AAA title, set in a “totally different universe” to their popular Witcher RPG series. More exact details haven’t been confirmed, but it makes total sense for the new game to be a sci-fi RPG.

“The biggest news is that we are going to work on a new IP, a totally new title,” Adam Badowski, a studio director at CD Projekt RED, told Polygamia. When the presenter guessed that new title was a sci-fi game, Badowski replied with, “You can keep guessing all you want, but we will reveal more when the time is right.”


CD Projekt to release five games by 2015

Tom Hatfield at

Posters on NeoGAF have mined CD Projekt's investor report for details of their current projects. The report says that the Witcher developer plans to put out two high profile games in 2014 and 2015, with two low and one mid budget projects planned for 2012-2013. All are planned to be multiplatform and, given CD Projekt's history, we assume one of those platforms will be the PC.

The report also confirms that CD Projekt are working on a new intellectual property, which makes sense with all those games in the works, otherwise they'd end up producing 'Witcher Kart Racing'.


Witcher 2 version 2.0 overhauls combat, adds dark mode and battle arena, out tomorrow

Tom Senior at

The huge, free 2.0 update to the Witcher 2 will hit tomorrow, adding new modes, a proper tutorial, and dozens of major fixes designed to improve combat. The fiddly enemy targeting system has been improved, controls feel smoother and Geralt's attacks can no longer be constantly interrupted by a prod from one of a dozen enemies.

The patch will add a new Arena mode. Separate from the single player campaign, this will throw Geralt into a gladiatorial ring in which he much fight off waves of increasingly powerful foes for GLORY. And points. Mid-fight, you'll encounter allies that can be recruited to help with tougher waves. Once you've racked up a good sum, you'll be able to post your score online.

Then there's dark mode, designed to add a new level of difficulty for hardened Witcher fans. Every enemy will have the strength to quickly take you out, but a string of new quests will let you unlock new armour sets and gain cursed weapons, because wielding cursed weapons always ends well. The patch makes loads of other changes, and incorporates all other patches and previous DLC additions. If you upgrade from a fresh install, you'll get all of the many, many free improvements CD Projekt have made to the Witcher 2 in one package. Get the full patch notes below.


Future Witcher 2 DLC to remain free in spite of Xbox version, says CD Projekt

Nathan Grayson at

Yesterday, CD Projekt guaranteed that more Witcher 2 upgrades will soon be awkwardly opening doors one-at-a-time into your life. Awesome, right? No downsides here. None at all ever. Please?

The Witcher, though, is hardly all sunshine and butterflies, so – fittingly – neither is its news. There's a catch. Or at least, I was afraid there'd be. So I got in touch with CD Projekt Red to find out if Geralt's next equippable stat-boosting trophy will be your wallet.


CD Projekt "assures" that 2.0 isn't last Witcher 2 update, teases Witcher 3

Nathan Grayson at

The Witcher 2's hotly anticipated 2.0 patch, perhaps its witchiest to date, is just around the corner, but CD Projekt's not letting Geralt hang up his monster-killing swords and lady-killing, well, equipment just yet. There's plenty more on the way, the developer said during the Eurogamer Expo. As for precisely when it's coming, well, that's a bit less clear.


The Witcher 2 patch 1.35 fixes Steam achievements and blood spatters

Tom Senior at

A new update has landed for The Witcher 2. Evil Avatar spotted the fix list on The Witcher 2 site where the patch is available to download now. It makes a number of small but useful fixes to a few quests, some scientists in Flotsam get proper names and, importantly, "Game exe files are no longer treated as a threat by popular antivirus software." You'll find the full patch notes below.


Interview—Hard Reset dev on Call of Duty, cyberpunk, Deus Ex, PC exclusivity

Nathan Grayson at

In July, we blew the lid off Flying Wild Hog's cyberpunk-soaked love letter to shooters of yore, Hard Reset. But—after picking the lid shrapnel out of our charred flesh—we realized something: this isn't a typical game release. Big-budget PC exclusive? No multiplayer? Nothing about crying behind cover 70 percent of the time? We asked, and Flying Wild Hog founder Klaudiusz Zych answered. Read on for Zych's thoughts about Call of Duty, Deus Ex, phoned-in multiplayer, PC leaving consoles in the dust, and plenty more.


The Witcher 2 patch 1.3 to add extra quest and save woman in Vergen

Tom Senior at

The upcoming 1.3 patch for The Witcher 2 will add free DLC, according to a new post on The Witcher 2 site. The new DLC will slot add some bonus witchering to chapter two, with a quest called "A Sackful of Fluff," and "will prove most rewarding to those who demonstrate patience." There's no news on what the quest will contain. Hopefully witches.

The patch will also fix a lot of UI irritations. A much needed "junk" section in your items menu should help avoid the embarrassing situation where Geralt is carrying so many looted toenails he can't physically move any more. If you simply must keep all of those toenails, inns now provide item storage. Haters of annoying imp creatures will also be pleased to know that a "problem with some nekkers being immortal has been resolved," and a random woman in Vergen will be pleased to hear that "option to fist fight woman praying at a statue in Vergen has been deactivated." Full patch notes follow.


CD Projekt facing legal action after dropping DRM from The Witcher 2

Tom Hatfield at

Gamepur are reporting that Namco Bandai, who published the retail version of the Witcher 2 in Europe, have filed a lawsuit against the game's developers, CD Projekt RED, for breach of contract. The suit alleges that the developers broke contract twice, firstly by removing DRM from retail versions of The Witcher 2 and secondly by switching publishers to THQ for the console version of the game.

Adam Kicinski, CEO of CD Projekt RED said: "As with most cases, we first tried to end the dispute peacefully. Attempts failed and because of this, we hoped that our partner would send the case to the court. The agreement that we signed last year, concerned only the distribution of “The Witcher 2 for PC. The records were carefully clarified to avoid any ambiguity.

Regarding the partnership with THQ he said: "Namco Bandai have options when choosing the priority of our distributor’s version of the Xbox 360. It could use, but not taken advantage of certain preferences. In this situation, we chose the offer that THQ made us." Adding: "Our financial situation is very good at the moment and the lack of a few million does not have any impact on current activities. Withholding of payments means only that after some time, our partner will have to give us the money."

"I hope that the whole thing will end with a pre-litigation settlement. If it doesn’t, I am sure that we will win the case and then the loser will pay for our lawyers."

Our Witcher 2 review can be found here or check out our tweaks guide.

The Witcher 2 Patch 1.2 and DLC released

Tom Hatfield at

The 1.2 Patch for The Witcher 2: Assassin's of Kings came out today, and with it the DLC "Barbers and Coiffeuses" which allows Geralt to... change his hairstyle. Which I think we can all agree is what the game was really missing.

Full Patch notes within.


Witcher 2 patch 1.1 delayed

Tom Senior at

CD Projekt were planning to release the first major patch for the Witcher 2 yesterday, but an unexpected problem has delayed the launch. A message on The Witcher 2 site tells the story. "The good news is that the patch is ready. The bad news is that we have encountered some problems with the server infrastructure, making downloading DLCs impossible." There's no revised date for the patch, yet. "We will update you when we know more," reads the official announcement. The patch notes promise to make significant performance improvements of up to 30% for owners of the retail edition.


The Witcher 2 patch 1.1 incoming

Tom Senior at

The first patch for The Witcher 2 is set to go live this evening. The update contains fixes for problems some players are having with free DLC downloads, and key remapping now extends to arrow and number keys, but the most welcome improvements will be the ones made to the game's performance.

CD Projekt say that there will be between 5% and 30% framerate improvement for most players, especially those with the retail version of the game. CD Projekt are also planning another patch for next week, which will hopefully tackle the difficulty issues encountered by many players. Get the full patch notes below.


Witcher 2 developers to announce new project at E3 2011

Tom Senior at

A message to Czech Eurogamer, picked up by VG247, reveals that The Witcher 2 developers CD Projekt will be announcing a new game at E3 2011 in just a few weeks time. It won't be a Witcher 2 expansion pack, or an announcement of The Witcher 2 on consoles, it'll be something completely new. We'll know more soon enough. Keep your browser pointed at PCGamer.com. We have big plans for E3 this year. Until then, let's speculate. What would you like to see CD Projekt do next?


The Witcher 2 review

Richard Cobbett at

The Witcher 2 is a game that shoots for the sun while its rivals are still lining up their sights on the moon. It's an AAA RPG with an indie soul, and a charged, exciting adventure you can really sink your teeth into, admire, and for the most part, love. From the raw technical wizardry of the engine, to tent walls rippling in the breeze and villagers running for cover when it rains, it's a game built with burning, red-raw passion and exactly one goal. To be the best RPG ever, whatever it takes.

Ultimately, it falls short of that, but not without giving it a damn good go. Over its 20-30 hours of almost relentlessly superb moments, Witcher 2 raises almost every bar it can get its hands on. It's let down by only two things: an undercooked combat system, and a story resolution that it actually hurts to watch. The rest is simply amazing, from the beautiful writing to the gorgeous visuals, meaningful choices, and a world that feels like a real place that exists beyond the game's limitations.


EU Giveaway: The Witcher 2 Collector's Edition

Tom Senior at

The Witcher 2 is out today. To celebrate, Namco Bandai have sent us a copy of the enormous Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings Collector's Edition to give away to one lucky European reader.

The set contains a making of DVD, a world map, an enormous art book, a set of arcane dice, playing cards and a rule book, a "cursed coin" (watch out for that), pages and pages of cut-out and build papercraft, a bonus in-game commando jacket and a bust of Geralt, modelled above by a mystery web writer. It's massive, and a brilliant prize for even casual fans of the Witcher. To win, simple answer the question below.


Witcher 2 launch trailers have headless kings and assassins

Tom Senior at

Five new Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings trailers have appeared all over the internet ahead of the game's release tomorrow. The video asks the question high in the minds of Geralt's enemies. How do you kill a Witcher? (hint: you can't). The four trailers below uncover more of the sweeping plot, featuring assassins, kings, gruesomely assassinated kings and men with swords going "nyaaargh!"


The Witcher 2 trailer talks magic and bombs

Tom Senior at

The latest dev diary for The Witcher 2 drops lots of interesting info-nuggets on the upcoming sequel, not least the fact that there will be a hardcore difficulty mode that will make you restart the entire game if Geralt dies. VG247 spotted the video, in which the devs also talk about the balance between the different skill trees, and give us an overview of the bombs Geralt can use to stun his foes, or blow them the hell up.

For a closer look at The Witcher 2, check out the latest batch of screenshots, or read our preview. The game's due out on May 17.


The Witcher 2 screens have kings, castles and swamp monsters

Tom Senior at

Going on the footage we've seen so far, The Witcher 2 is going to be a fine looking game. Don't believe me? Check out the latest batch of screenshots, featuring frog men, swamp monsters and good old fashioned castle.


Witcher 2 system specs detailed

Tom Senior at

The Witcher 2 is looking exceptionally pretty, and the devs know it, but will those huge fantasy vistas need a supercomputer to run? CD Projekt have released the system specs for The Witcher 2. You'll find them below in full.