Following a so-so launch on PC, and a dismal launch on Xbox One and PlayStation 4 (leading to Sony delisting the game), employees at Cyberpunk 2077 developer CD Projekt Red reportedly asked some pointed questions during a video meeting with studio management this week.
According to Jason Schreier at Bloomberg, one staff member asked management why it said that Cyberpunk 2077 was complete in January when, according to that employee, it wasn't. Another developer suggested that it was hypocritical to develop a game about corporate exploitation with the help of mandatory overtime.
When asked about crunch, the studio directors "said they had plans to improve production practices in the future but didn't elaborate," writes Schreier. His account of the meeting comes from two employees at the company. Beyond that, he says that several CD Projekt Red staff members, past and present, have said that the development deadlines were unrealistic throughout the project.
Cyberpunk 2077 launched last week, and while it's been quite buggy on PC and very demanding of our hardware, we've been enjoying it—more or less, depending on which of us you ask. It wasn't quite the complex, simulated open world many of us were hoping for.
The really big technical problems were on last-gen consoles, specifically the original 2013 versions of the Xbox One and PS4, where the bugs seem to be amplified, textures can pop-in super late, and the render resolution has obviously been reduced to achieve a playable framerate. Both Sony and Microsoft are offering refunds to anyone who wants them, and Sony made an unprecedented move when it delisted Cyberpunk 2077 from the PlayStation Store yesterday.
It's been a bad week for CD Projekt, to say the least, although prior to this refund business, the company made its Cyberpunk 2077 development costs back and more in just one day. The game is far from being a failure, then, and patches are coming. Plenty of other games have launched in a rough state and improved significantly over time.
If and how the frustrations and grievances raised by some of CD Projekt's employees will be addressed, though, is another question. This is not the first time CD Projekt management has been at odds with staff. Back in October, for instance, joint CEO Adam Kiciński apologized to employees for downplaying crunch at the studio when he told investors that it was "not that bad."
You can read Bloomberg's full report here.