Some more details about the future of CD Projekt RED have come out of an interview on a Polish business website. In it, CEO Adam Kiciński talks about the company’s focus on The Witcher 3, believing they can continue to sell copies by developing new content throughout 2016. He says they have “additional ideas” beyond their announced second expansion, Blood and Wine. Cyberpunk 2077, meanwhile, already has a planned release date.
Have you seen these first, lovely Witcher 3 Blood and Wine screenshots?
The interview was with Polish website Moneyand has been translated by various folks on Reddit and elsewhere. Here are the key quotes:
“This and the next year will be devoted to The Witcher. Apart from the second expansion we have some additional ideas. They should help us animate sales in 2016. The game is selling so well, that we are convinced there are still many people who will buy it if we promote it further.”
This is very true – Witcher 3 has the capacity to have as long a tail as Bethesda’s games usually do on console. It probably won’t manage the same legendary status on PC due to a lower modding legacy, but the amount of hype surrounding the game, nevermind the ludicrous number of Game of the Year awards it’s inevitably going to pick up, means it’s going to stay relevant for a long time, especially if CD Projekt push it.
Adam gave a few more details on that when he talked about Cyberpunk 2077 and revealed they’re pretty sure when it will launch:
“Life after The Witcher exists. We’ve been working on Cyberpunk 2077 for a long time. It’s a completely different reality, set in the future, with corporations and morally grey world. Just to be clear: We already have the release date for Cyberpunk 2077 planned, but we won’t announce it until we are ready to start the marketing campaign. At the moment we’re concentrating on The Witcher and don’t want to distract users from that product, which we are still monetizing.”
In case you’re wondering why the CEO of a multi-million dollar company doesn’t think you can hold the idea of two seperate games in your head, he’s actually right. It’s a common phenomenon to see people delay buying one game in a genre to wait for one they’re more excited for. I’m planning on picking up The Witcher 3 fairly soon – but if Cyberpunk, a game with a far more interesting-to-me world and universe but the same solid RPG team behind it, was definitely coming out in February or so, I wouldn’t bother. While I doubt the release is that soon, while it’s still a nebulous 6-24 months away, it’s less ‘real’. They don’t want that to solidify until Witcher 3’s last DLCs are long-since out and they’ve moved into making money off them via Steam sales.
He also had this to say regarding how the company considers their customers:
“I know we are on a business TV, so I am going to use the word “Client”, however internally we don’t use such nomenclature. They are gamers to us. We are trying to quickly fix any wrongs/problems and want players to talk to us as equals. And that’s how we really look at things – I’m not saying it just because I’m in TV. We don’t want to exploit gamers for their money (which is what many other gaming companies do) and that’s why we don’t want to become a part of a larger structure.”
Pretty classic CD Projekt playing to the crowd here, but it’s not like they don’t back it up. They’re good at phrasing how they announce things (calling their free updates to Witcher 3 ‘DLC’ when they’re more the size of microtransactions, for example) and making sure they get the best possible press, but they do provide free content where others would not, make sure what you’re getting for a season pass is made clear before they sell it and their ports and patch times have always been exemplary. As always, it’ll be exciting to see what they will do next.