Meta Bugs Cyberpunk

If there is one anime like cyberpunk with anime kids it’s Dennou Coil

Welcome to the first Meta Bug series I hope to use this as a place to retrospective on review game dev, media or business and learn from them.

https://giphy.com/gifs/typing-keyboard-dennou-coil-1337mjZhdNJWSY/

Let’s get started. Here are some things I looked at the Cyberpunk launch and the issues CD Projekt may have faced.

Cyberpunk to CyberFunked!

In this article I am looking at Cyberpunk 2077 launch and some of their practices that lead up to the disaster. I do believe the game is good if you run on PC. And as Gabe says it’s not so easy game development and to learn form the negative experience.

Cyberpunk launched to Fans with high expectations but it’s a case of High Promises and under delivering. Management seem to focus a lot on the marketing of the game which was very slick. From social media videos to press conferences appearances and trailers. It was high vision and high octane. Except when the goods ship it did not deliver.

Based on reading some of these articles it’s clear that the launch did not go so well.

https://www.masterthemeta.com/themetas/cyberpunk-2077s-crazy-launch

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/12/19/style/cyberpunk-2077-video-game-disaster.amp.html

https://www.rockpapershotgun.com/amp/cyberpunk-2077-devs-say-they-ignored-signals-about-the-need-for-additional-time-to-refine-the-game

Here is some of the issues they may have probably faced.

#1 Never over promise

Most of the trailers were very polished there was a lot of emphasis on marketing. Some say they were duped seeing the trailers or it was a pre baked tender version of the game and not the actual product.

A read of the Bloomberg Article

It did not help Keanu was Johnny Silverhand in the E3 reveal. This raised the expectations even more with a celebrity profile presence.

E3 Keanu Reveal
Fans reacting to Keanu

It seems that the original gameplay ideas concepts were missing in the final version.

I think as a general rule it’s best to show the game project only when it’s 80% done ✅ as this can allow for the wiggle room. I think the video trailers shown especially the game play should have been kept internal.

An announcement video is ok if you know you have secured the future development costs.

#2 Good production practices

Load up with the right tools 🛠

While I am not sure what the actual production was like at CDPR. There was a good video about CDPR may not have used agile methods.

I am not sure if they were using Waterfall methods still today but other companies like Riot Games have introduced some of these agile idea to ther game production.

https://www.riotgames.com/en/work-with-us/disciplines/dev-management/dont-go-chasing-waterfall-using-agile-methods-in-creative-development

#3 Stick to your strengths

Make sure you stick to genre strengths. I felt they should have not tried to emulate Rockstar games GTA V. GTaV worked cause they did 4 games prior and added to it rather than reinvent the game design. There were a lot of things solved in their games for 4 prior versions and in two Red Dead Redemption cowboy games.

CDPR should have considered to make Cyberpunk more like it’s Witcher game and focus more on RPG style gameplay rather than build emergent open world systems.

While I cannot fully know the whole situation at CD Projekt it shows that game Development is not easy and when someting comes out it.

These are the impressions I get based on what I look at the from the Game Launch.

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