Just about everyone is aware that Cyberpunk 2077 launched in a rough state back in 2020. In the years since, CD Projekt RED has continuously updated the game in order to fulfill the original vision for the RPG. Their efforts were enough to earn the Shacknews Award for most improved game in 2023, and we got in touch with the studio to talk about that journey.
We interviewed Marcin Momot, Global Community Director at CD Projekt RED to learn more about the studio’s response to the Cyberpunk 2077 launch and the path to improving it.
After a rocky launch, how did the team persevere to turn things around? How satisfying is it to see Cyberpunk 2077 recognized for being a great game?
MM: Over the whole development cycle leading up to the release, the whole team poured their hearts and souls into the game, so you can only imagine how painful and difficult that launch period was. Still, everyone was committed to continuing their work on Cyberpunk 2077 to get the game where it needs to be to truly shine. So many things have been said about it since the release that I don't think there's anything that could be added to the discussion at this point. On the professional level, I am extremely proud to have been able to add my small contribution to the project and on the personal side, as a gamer, I'm just happy all other members of the community around the world are playing the game, enjoying it, and appreciating the story we wanted to tell — be it for the first time or going through their second or third playthrough. I'm just happy that both the game and all the developers who worked on it are getting their well-deserved praise.
What message do you have for people who have seen the negative press around Cyberpunk 2077 and have thus far avoided playing?
MM: Ever since the game came out in 2020 we've been constantly at work putting out patches and updates. The team has been tirelessly working on refining some of the gameplay elements that needed addressing and adding some new content via our FREE DLC program. On the communication spectrum of things we also tried to keep players informed of what's going on with the project via our social media channels as well as dedicated streams during which we previewed the most important changes and answered players' questions. There has never been a better time to play the game than now. Especially with the Phantom Liberty expansion on the horizon; you can explore Night City, become as familiar with the game as possible, then jump into the expansion.
Cyberpunk 2077 has come a long way, winning Most Improved Game of 2022 at the Shacknews Awards. What's next?
MM: First of all, I’d just like to say that we, and by “we” I mean the whole team here at CD PROJEKT RED, are humbled and grateful to have received this recognition, truly. It means the world to us to see so many people enjoying our game, pouring dozens or even hundreds of hours of their time to explore Night City’s nooks and crannies, crafting amazing content around it, and engaging with us via our channels.
As for the future, when it comes to Cyberpunk 2077 the first thing we have planned that's on the horizon is the upcoming update for the PC version of the game. It's going to further expand on the visual fidelity via a completely new preset called Overdrive. This will be aimed at all the high-end PC gamers who want to squeeze the maximum out of their benchmark hardware. Next up after that is the Phantom Liberty expansion — a spy-thriller story starring Idris Elba and a returning Keanu Reeves set in an all new area of Night City. And last but not least, there’s the followup to Cyberpunk 2077 — codename Orion — that we announced in late 2022 as part of our long-term strategy update. But that’s definitely a story for another time. :)
It was an insightful chat about the growth that Cyberpunk 2077 has seen since December 2020, as well as what lies ahead for the franchise. Visit our interview page for more intriguing chats with developers.
Donovan Erskine posted a new article, CD Projekt RED talks about improving Cyberpunk 2077 post-launch and future plans