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In a video apology published on Wednesday, CD Project co-founder and joint CEO Marcin Iwinski said he and his fellow board members were to blame for the poor quality of the console version at release.
The state of the game resulted in refunds being offered and the title being pulled from the PlayStation Store. CD Projekt is also facing a class-action lawsuit which claims the company misled investors over the quality of the product.
“The console version of Cyberpunk 2077 did not meet the quality standard we wanted it to meet,” Iwinski said. “I, and the entire leadership team, are deeply sorry for this and this video is me publicly owning up to that.
“Please don’t fault any of our teams for what happened. They all are incredibly talented and hard-working. Myself and the board are the final decision makers and it was our call to release the game.
“Although, believe me, we never ever intended for anything like this to happen. I assure you that we’ll do our best to regain your trust.”
Iwinski claimed CD Projekt’s “testing did not show a big part of the issues” players experienced at release and that the company genuinely believed the console version of the title was ready to be released alongside the PC one, which reviewed relatively well.
Explaining the gap between the console and PC versions, he said: “Cyberpunk 2077 is huge in scope, it features a multitude of custom objects, interacting systems and mechanics. In the game, everything is not stretched out over flat terrain where we can make things less taxing hardware-wise, but condensed in one big city and in a relatively loading-free environment.
“We made it even more difficult for ourselves by first wanting to make the game look epic on PCs and then adjusting it to consoles — especially old-gens. That was our core assumption. And things did not look super difficult at first, while we knew the hardware gap, ultimately, time has proven that we’ve underestimated the task.”
On the subject of console development troubles, Iwinski added: “The main culprit was having to constantly improve our in-game streaming system for old-gen consoles. Streaming is responsible for ‘feeding’ the engine with what you see on screen, as well as the game mechanics. Since the city is so packed and the disk bandwidth of old-gen consoles is what it is, this is something that constantly challenged us.”
“We’re still planning on releasing free DLC for the game, just like with The Witcher 3,” Iwinski said. “However, we have decided that our priority is working on the most important fixes and updates. We will be releasing free DLC afterwards — we’ll have more to say about that in the coming months.”
The free DLC will be followed by the game’s next-gen update, which is planned for release in the second half of 2021.
In a new section of its Cyberpunk website dedicated to keeping players informed about the game’s continued development, CD Projekt also addressed the issue of crunch, which was mandatory in the run-up to release.
“The team is working to bring relevant fixes to the game without any obligatory overtime,” it said. “Avoiding crunch on all of our future projects is one of our top priorities.”
The first details of planned Cyberpunk 2077 multiplayer modes may have been uncovered by dataminers this week, after references to Heists and Deathmatch were found in the game’s executable file.