Note: This article was crafted to ensure that you don’t encounter any unnecessary information about the anticipated title, Cyberpunk 2077. Bear in mind that links within this article weren’t constructed with the same intent, exponentially more so for embedded Twitter links.
We’ve been hemming and hawing over the past months as to precisely what level of proficiency CD Projekt Red has been crafting the upcoming uber-anticipated Cyberpunk 2077 at the close of 2020, following multiple delays and concerning labor practices consistently and reliably reported upon.
CD Projekt Red’s status as the uber-PC developers with consumer-friendly practices was ultimately at stake; an admittedly short-lived title bestowed upon them following their positive releases of free content for The Witcher 3 that offered paid DLC’s that mirrored the base game in terms of content and world-building.
No pressure for the Polish game juggernauts that recently surpassed Ubisoft as the most valuable European developer: just make a title that can approach The Witcher 3 in terms of status and content ( the third iteration of the franchise is largely responsible for the Netflix adaptation) and simultaneously manage to blow every expectation out of the water.
Expectations that have become absurdly astronomical as the months turned into years, and short delays turned into a feeling of never-ending frustration for fans that have been eagerly awaiting more of this title since it’s original reveal in 2012.
The review embargo has been lifted, and the reports and results are concerning many.
Note that final numerical scores mean very little, if anything; they are arbitrary numbers that shift and flit endlessly and consistently from outlet to outlet, if not reviewer to reviewer. So we’re focusing on the actual meat of what reviews have stated, and that has echoed one singular facet that may give everyone the briefest moment of pause tomorrow, if not sooner.
Review: "Cyberpunk 2077" feels like the messy and inevitable evolution of open-world design, @genepark writes.
These early impressions come with many caveats. For one, the game is boiling over with glitches. https://t.co/NQJwdauWUm
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) December 7, 2020
There are bugs, they are reportedly everywhere, and they consistently block players from progressing and, some have stated, outright ruined the pacing and climactic moments presented to players throughout the title.
It’s worth noting that all outlets currently playing the review are doing so through GOG, meaning that all users are on a PC version of the title. Within the reviews, outlets are restricted from making their own screenshots and videos of the gameplay: they can only embed B-reel footage offered by CD Projekt Red, meaning there’s a hard time to be had in explaining precisely what is going on.
It also means that reviewers eager to publish are stuck using cutscenes that have already been endlessly dissected for the past months, if not years.
Review Cyberpunk 2077 is a stunning achievement, if you can overlook the myriad of launch glitches, writes @AndyPlaytonic
— VGC (@VGC_News) December 7, 2020
Floating assets, T-posing, mechanics failing to properly react to a trigger, UI not properly functioning: think of how bad The Division was on release day, and multiply it by three.
This is only on PC: consoles are theorized to be in a much worse state, at least concerning current-gen (being Xbox One and PlayStation 4) that is compounded by statements of the most recent delay being caused specifically by those platforms. We haven’t seen anything from what those platforms can offer with the meaty Cyberpunk 2077, and the title is causing meaty rigs to occasionally struggle with processing everything.
all the officially embargoed reviews of Cyberpunk 2077 you see out today are based on the PC release through GOG https://t.co/GxNKDb9rW0
— GenePu̶̗͇͆ń̵̲́͜k 2077 (@GenePark) December 7, 2020
With meaty PC rigs struggling, it’s also bringing some concerns regarding the performance of next-gen consoles as well, being the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5; no review copies were offered for any of these four consoles, leaving the imagination to fill in the gaps between PC performance (and CD Projekt Red is typically thought of as a PC-first developer, at least empirically). SkillUp reported that zero console review codes were offered to any outlet.
Reviews should not be vehicles for rolling out more marketing material, so I'll put my review up when I'm able to show you the reality of the game with my own footage.
I'm also disappointed that no console review code was provided to any outlet…
— Skill Up (@SkillUpYT) December 7, 2020
It’s also worth noting that the review copies sent out by CD Projekt Red are using Denuvo Anti-Tamper to safeguard the title until release: this is an anti-piracy program that has readily drawn comparisons to worse performance, although that isn’t a universal metric by any means. Some outlets are currently refraining from discussing the reportedly struggling performance of the title specifically for this reason, although many have pushed forward regardless.
I do hope that the day one patch zaps a lot of them, because it's just too much to ignore as it stands. Never enough to stop me playing, mind, and when it is on song it can be spectacular.
— Tomagotchi (@TomHoggins) December 7, 2020
CDPR has made a statement regarding the bugs that are consistently referenced by multiple outlets, saying that the vast majority of these bugs have been squashed via a large patch recently that one developer claiming to be from CDPR stated wasn’t considered as the ‘day one patch’.
The Witcher 3 was a bit buggy at launch as well; this isn’t necessarily new territory that we’re treading here with CD Projekt Red, although perhaps a disappointing couple of reports that have come in early has a few more furrowed brows than CDPR would like. Some have stated that the project would have fared a bit better if they offered a few more delays, although one has to wonder if the fans could have stomached another delay.