Cyberpunk 2077 Support Dwindles as Developer Focuses on Expansion
Cyberpunk 2077 is rapidly approaching its one-year anniversary since its troubled release at the tail end of 2020, and that means that there are some major changes on the way for its development. It looks like the Cyberpunk 2077 support for the base game is dwindling now in favor of future plans.
Cyberpunk 2077 Support Reducing
The reveal of the reduction in developers dedicated to Cyberpunk 2077 support was shared during the recent third-quarter earnings report that CD Projekt Red had for its investors. In the earnings report, one of the first graphs that are shown is of the allotment of developers over time.
Near the launch of the game just over a year ago on the final day of 2020, December 31, there were well over 50% of the entire development staff at CD Projekt Red that was focusing on the Cyberpunk 2077 support side. This was to, hopefully, fix and mitigate the countless issues that marred the game’s release and were understandable.
Come the midway point of this year on June 30, 2021, and the story had changed considerably with around 40-45% of the developers at the studio working on Cyberpunk 2077 support and an increase in staff working on the four other main plans for the company.
Then, the final graph shows the state of the Cyberpunk 2077 support and other plans as of September 30, 2021. As of that day, just over 25% of developers (perhaps around 30% in total) were still working on supporting Cyberpunk 2077 while more and more were working on other features.
Current-Gen Versions of Cyberpunk Still on the Way
However, this is a third-quarter earnings report, hence why the data ends with September. Given that the data shown was about two months ago, it is highly likely that there are even fewer developers at CD Projekt Red that are focusing on supporting the base game and fixing the issues with it.
It would not be surprising at all given the trajectory of the movement of developers to other projects if only 25% of the studio, or perhaps even less, are working on supporting the 2020 title at this time. However, what is worth noting is that this does not mean bad news for Cyberpunk 2077 at all.
In fact, the good news is that the previously current-gen versions of both Cyberpunk 2077 and The Witcher 3 are scheduled to meet their target dates next year. Cyberpunk will receive its long-awaited current-gen version on PS5 and Xbox Series sometime in the first quarter of 2022, though no specific date has been shared at this time.
The same goes for The Witcher 3 that is scheduled to drop for the current generation of consoles and include some nice changes, like the Netflix show-inspired items and more, in the second quarter of 2022. It is very likely that the core group of supporting developers for Cyberpunk 2077 are working on that new update right now.
Other Developers Are Working on the Cyberpunk Expansion and More
Since there is only a solid chunk of developers working on supporting Cyberpunk 2077, it begs the question of what the other two-thirds of the company are doing right now. The biggest chunk of them are actually still working on Cyberpunk 2077, but just the future content for it.
These developers are now focusing on the expansion for Cyberpunk 2077 that currently has an unspecified release window. We know that at least one major expansion is coming to the game in the future, likely on the scale of the expansions that The Witcher 3 experienced.
It is also possible that the expansion will be timed with the long-awaited and still relatively uncertain Cyberpunk 2077 multiplayer experience that we could still be getting someday. While that nice chunk of developers (more than 25%) are working on the expansion, there are still three other ventures going on simultaneously at CD Projekt Red.
Another large one is focusing on Gwent-related projects, including new content that will be coming to the popular Witcher-based card game experience that just continues to grow. 2022 will see new content come to the game and likely a continuation of the competitive events that we saw this year.
CD Projekt Red Sheds Light on Its New Studios
From there, the next largest section of developers are working on “other projects”, which is pretty vague. And the final section is Spokko-related work, like The Witcher: Monster Slayer augmented reality game. The team also took some time to shed some light on the acquisitions of the past year.
This includes the new studio that is known as CD Projekt Red Vancouver and the recently acquired Molasses Flood studio that will be working on projects, including something new that is based on one of the IPs that CD Projekt Red is known for, so likely either Witcher or Cyberpunk-related.
For some players, they might be wondering what this all means for Cyberpunk since it is a game that was so troubled a year ago. Over the past year, though, it has recovered and is in a much more playable and quality place overall compared to where it was at its launch when more than $2 million was spent on refunds for the game.
That said, there is still more work to be done for the game even now, including the current-gen versions of the game that will bring it more up to speed, graphically and performance-wise, with the vastly superior PC version on both PS5 and Xbox Series. There is no telling if the inferior PS4 and Xbox One versions natively on their respective consoles will ever really be in a state that is acceptable, like the other versions, though.