Various outlets have reported difficulties and questionable conditions in attempting to release reviews for Cyberpunk 2077.
Cyberpunk 2077 is going to be the year’s biggest game. The hype surrounding it has built exponentially since its initial announcement all the way back in 2012. To describe it as ‘highly anticipated’ now would be something of an understatement.
Given the amount of attention it will receive from gamers, it’s naturally important for gaming news outlets to release reviews as soon as they’re able to — a fact that some in the community suspect CD Projekt Red is manipulating to keep word of the game’s shortcomings to a minimum.
It’s no surprise that, over the course of its unusually long development, Cyberpunk 2077 has become a sprawling beast of a game. Its sheer size, combined with the late delivery of review copies, led games journalist, Dave Thier of Forbes, to issue a warning that the initial wave of impressions would likely be skewed.
Thier points out that the time pressure placed upon reviewers leads to practices like “pulling multiple 12 hour sessions, mainlining story content and ignoring side stuff,” all of which makes their experience with their game utterly unlike the one that will likely be experienced by the vast majority of players.
Other reviewers and outlets have criticised CD Projekt Red’s restrictions on the use of recorded in-game footage, instead insisting that developer-supplied B-roll footage be used instead. Community members have subsequently speculated that this choice was made in order to avoid the loss of sales that might result from footage being shown of the game’s many reported bugs.
Others have expressed concern over the fact that review copies were only supplied for PC, meaning that console players have not been given any authoritative insight into how the game will perform on their chosen platform. This is particularly concerning for those hoping to pick up the PS4 or Xbox One, which lack the solid-state drives CD Projekt Red have emphasised the importance of for PC players.
There’s little doubt that Cyberpunk 2077 will be a massive commercial success, regardless of what reviewers say about it at this point. However, consumers expect to know the truth about the products they purchase, and it follows that they should expect that reviewers be granted the opportunity to produce the most honest and thorough reviews that they can.
CD Project Red may be a community darling, but its approach to facilitating reviews for Cyberpunk 2077 leaves much to be desired.