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News Cyberpunk 2077 Dev Team Will Work Extra Long Hours After Latest Delay

MiyazakiHatesKojima

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"We try to limit crunch as much as possible, but it is the final stage."
As part of a CD Projekt Red press conference following Cyberpunk 2077's five-month delay, the Polish developer confirmed that it will be asking its employees to work extra long hours to finish the much-anticipated role-playing game ahead of its scheduled release in September.

During a Q&A session, CD Projekt Red was asked if the development team would need to "crunch" to finish Cyberpunk 2077. Adam Kicinski, who is CD Projekt Red's joint CEO, confirmed that he expects the team to need to work long hours to finish the game, though he said there is a plan in place to attempt to lessen the periods of crunch.

"To some degree, yes--to be honest," Kicinski said. "We try to limit crunch as much as possible, but it is the final stage. We try to be reasonable in this regard, but yes. Unfortunately."

"Crunch" is the video game industry term for working for an unreasonable and unhealthy amount of time on a project. Typically, but not always, periods of crunch happen near the end of development.

CD Projekt Red is developing Cyberpunk 2077 across its studios in Krakow and Warsaw offices. At PAX Aus in October 2019, CDPR Krakow boss John Mamais told GameSpot everyone at his studio was working "really hard," and that while the staffers can feel rejuvenated by showing the game at tradeshows, this also puts the team "in a vice, in a way."

Mamais also spoke about how CDPR's culture of hard work is not a good fit for everyone. He said CDPR does what it can to limit crunch, but this isn't always possible.

"You sacrifice some things to do that and be part of that. There are a lot of people who come into the industry that are fresh; they don't really understand what it takes to do it," he said. "So we get a lot of new guys coming in, and they go, 'Oh god, this is like too much.' But then we have other guys come in from Rockstar Games, and they're like, 'This is not even crunch!' We're doing the best we can to keep the work under control. But sometimes when you're doing some big-ass game like this, it's not always possible to do that. It takes really hard work to make it really awesome."

It was also confirmed during the Q&A that the Cyberpunk 2077 delay has shifted other projects back as well, as the Cyberpunk 2077 multiplayer game will now release in 2022 at the soonest.Additionally, although Cyberpunk 2077's new September 17 release date is closer to the releases of the PS5 and Xbox Series X, CDPR still has no plans to support those systems.

CDPR also confirmed that Cyberpunk 2077 has been playable from start to finish for months, but "there's still work to done," which is why the company's board of directors unanimously voted for the delay.

"Night City is massive--full of stories, content and places to visit, but due to the sheer scale and complexity of it all, we need more time to finish playtesting, fixing, and polishing," the company said. "We want Cyberpunk 2077 to be our crowning achievement for this generation and postponing launch will give us the precious months we need to make the game perfect."

Kicinski clarified during the Q&A that some parts of Cyberpunk 2077 were on schedule while others were not. He added that there is nothing fundamentally wrong with the game, only that the studio needs more time for polishing and other efforts related to the size and complexity of the project.

The executive also confirmed during the Q&A that the Cyberpunk 2077 development team was only informed of the delay "minutes" before the official announcement came through.

This is not the first time that CDPR may be crunching on one of its big releases. In 2014, the company was accused of crunching for more than one year to finish The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt.
 

JordanN

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"Crunch" is the video game industry term for working for an unreasonable and unhealthy amount of time on a project.
This part always confused me. How did crunch become a game industry term?

Any company knee deep in Capitalism and profits isn't afraid to to push their employees to work harder so they can make more money. To see this in action, go to any retail store that is understaffed and tell me what happens when the employees don't do anything.

Or go visit your local warehouse and watch the people on the assembly lines. Outside of a 15 minute mandatory break, they are forced to work 7+ hours a day.

Not saying the people who do work the game industry jobs aren't pushed to the limits, but I never heard of an industry that doesn't carry the same burden either.
 
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xrnzaaas

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Games "Journalist" writing article about how other people are working hard at their job. Its OK Gamespot, Polish are hard workers, there won't be any blue hairs crying in closets.
I hate to spoil the fun, but Poles are not the majority of Cyberpunk's workforce. ;) The studio has many foreign employees, same with outsourcing tons of stuff.
 
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GreyHorace

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I don't get why 'game journalists' make such a big deal out of overtime. Yeah, that's the proper term. None of this crunch nonsense. You work in the real world, sometimes you do overtime. It sucks yes, but it's your fucking job. Just make sure you're being compensated for it.

But maybe these 'journalists' have never done overtime in their life. Bunch of snowflakes.

So long as their people don't get burnt out, all the luck to CD Projekt Red on this final stretch before the game is released.
 

Badbreezy

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This part always confused me. How did crunch become a game industry term?

Any company knee deep in Capitalism and profits isn't afraid to to push their employees to work harder so they can make more money. To see this in action, go to any retail store that is understaffed and tell me what happens when the employees don't do anything.

Or go visit your local warehouse and watch the people on the assembly lines. Outside of a 15 minute mandatory break, they are forced to work 7+ hours a day.

Not saying the people who do work the game industry jobs aren't pushed to the limits, but I never heard of an industry that doesn't carry the same burden either.
I work on a assembly line and having to constantly stand for 2-3Hrs, had worn out my knees and ankles
 
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mcjmetroid

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Reading that response from the CEO just makes me think they are gonna delay it further. They are definitely prepping next gen-versions of this game.
100% this is what's happening and to be honest what should be happening as well. It all makes sense, Why there is no footage of the console versions yet etc.

They'd make an absolute killing having this as a launch title for PS5 for instance.
 
Jul 2, 2014
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The best thing about all the people who cry about crunch, is that it's clear they are people who've never worked on something they are passionate about.

They are people who will never produce anything of value in the world because all they care about is clocking in between 9-5 and having an easy life. Which absolutely fine. But thank fuck there are creatives in the world willing to sacrifice for their art. Honestly if I was a super passionate game dev and my work wouldn't let me work extra hours to make it as good as I possibly could because they are scared of some virtue signalling game journalists. I think you'd see a lot of the talented devs move on to companies that share the same passion.

I look forward to the dip in quality of games over the next decade because the fear of crunch being a PR disaster thanks to a bunch of lazy cry babies. IT'S FUCKING OPTIONAL.
 

TTOOLL

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Are they getting paid extra for it too? If they are I see no problem. This is a very specific kind of job and this shit happens.
 

Miles708

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It's been somewhat known that being on crunch/overtime (call it how you want) for prolonged amount of time has a negative impact on the overrall productivity. After the initial sprint, the energy just fades off. It makes sense, maybe, from a management perspective, but unfortunately your employees are humans with their damn emotions and needs.

That said, without cruch the game would likely come out December or even next year, and we can't allow that, can we.
 
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vaibhavpisal

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Nooo. Take your time. Treat employees well. No layoffs either. I will be playing on ps5 or my future pc anyways.
 

MiguelItUp

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Man, crunch REALLY sucks, been involved in it way too much. Even then, they were never AAA products of this magnitude. All the best to them and theirs!

There's only been a handful of times where I worked overtime and crunched and was paid for it. Other than that the "perk" was free dinner. Oh boy, lol.

Here's to hoping they're treated VERY well during the crunch period.
 
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What's wrong with that? They are probably well paid working in a good environment. The pathetic bandwagon ResetEra millennial is overreacting with the bs talk like "Not fair" and "This should not happen" as they were working in a basement as slaves in a communist country. So tired of this sjw crap. Just waiting for the "Not buying the game" bs topic there
 
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lukilladog

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I see the promises of voluntary extra hours went out of the window, squeeze the employees well because gamers might not be here tomorrow.
 

GymWolf

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I don't have pussy shreier writing articles when i do crunch at work...or at the gym :ROFLMAO:
 

Krappadizzle

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We've waited this long and I'd prefer they just take the time they need to release what they want while staying sane at the same time. Witcher 3's release felt worse because we'd already had 2 great release before then and I wanted more Witcher.

I have plenty of things to play in the mean time. Take the time and do it right without them driving themselves crazy.
 
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saber45

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This part always confused me. How did crunch become a game industry term?

Any company knee deep in Capitalism and profits isn't afraid to to push their employees to work harder so they can make more money. To see this in action, go to any retail store that is understaffed and tell me what happens when the employees don't do anything.

Or go visit your local warehouse and watch the people on the assembly lines. Outside of a 15 minute mandatory break, they are forced to work 7+ hours a day.

Not saying the people who do work the game industry jobs aren't pushed to the limits, but I never heard of an industry that doesn't carry the same burden either.
Those industries differ in that overtime is paid. It isn't in the games industry.
 

ethomaz

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If you already delay something why not delay enough to not have extra hours lol
It is dumb to delay and put a new schedule where employees needs to do extra hours yet.
 
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MaestroMike

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I work on a assembly line and having to constantly stand for 2-3Hrs, had worn out my knees and ankles
its not like these guys are doing physical labour standing, lifting and walking all day they're on a computer sitting on their as$. they have a dream job
 
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saber45

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its not like these guys are doing physical labour standing, lifting and walking all day they're on a computer sitting on their as$. they have a dream job
Amazingly there are slightly different stresses and issues that arise from spending many hours making a hugely complex piece of software as opposed to a physical job.
 
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MaestroMike

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Amazingly there are slightly different stresses and issues that arise from spending many hours making a hugely complex piece of software as opposed to a physical job.
not slight differences. very big differences. depending on the size of the man 150 to 250 pounds moving, lifting & standing for hours everyday requires constant fuel, nutrients & a ton of rest to maintain & repair muscles/joints/tendons & the brain has to work hard to make sure ur using good form in ur movement. but for software development, u need to focus on fueling ur brain which just needs a lot of sugar & good fats & greens/burgers. u dont need to rest as much or eat as much calories. office job > physical times a billion. but a mix of both is probably the best. sitting down & thinking all the time sucks as$.
 
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brokenduck

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5.5 years development cycle is simply too long, the risk of the game already feels dated when it comes out is big. Hope they manage to cut it back off to 3 years max.
 

peter42O

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Was already expecting Cyberpunk 2077 to be a game of the year candidate but now, im thinking game of the generation candidate. Can it beat out The Witcher 3 for me??? Looking forward to finding out.
 

Siri

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This is what we’ve been hearing about CDPR for yesrs:

——————
”The studio's Glassdoor page also shows that things haven't improved much. Most of the negatives given by employees on the page include things such as a poor work-life balance, poor pay and incompetent management. One former employee summed it up succinctly as "too much pressure and no life", while another pointed out the poor pay, "...even compared to what other gamedev companies in Warsaw pay."
——————-

Everyone cheered like crazy when it was revealed how much money CDPR made from The Witcher 3 - so maybe fucking CDPR should give some of that money to their own workers?

And, btw, who exactly are “they”. I read about the owners of CDPR, and I didn’t like what I was reading.
 
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#Phonepunk#

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Justice warriors and Kotaku won’t care they will endlessly praise them game and hype it despite pretending to prioritise workers rights

personally I think it’s fine. one of the hazards of the job of coding, always has been
 
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saber45

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Justice warriors and Kotaku won’t care they will endlessly praise them game and hype it despite pretending to prioritise workers rights

personally I think it’s fine. one of the hazards of the job of coding, always has been
It's not a hazard of coding anything but games because every other industry else pays overtime. So all your good coders end up coding bank software for better wages and no unpaid overtime and your games get worse. Crunch is bad.
 

iorek21

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I'm not sure about this game... I don't know...

This could be either a masterpiece or a disappointing mess, it doesn't give me that confidence that The Witcher 3 had, even after the downgrade, it seemed that TW3 wouldn't fail, no matter what.

But this one...
 

Siri

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personally I think it’s fine. one of the hazards of the job of coding, always has been
Okay.... but you need to say this to the over-worked AND underpaid employees at CDPR. And you need to say it to their faces.

LOL.

The people at CDPR have basically been handed another six months of torture and you’re perfectly fine with that! I suggest you go over there and, on a Friday night, take a few of them to a bar and in between drinks tell them how you feel. LOL.
 

Shifty1897

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Crunch happens in every job worth doing. You can try to control it (and that's good) but it will happen from time to time.

It's not a hazard of coding anything but games because every other industry else pays overtime. So all your good coders end up coding bank software for better wages and no unpaid overtime and your games get worse. Crunch is bad.
This is categorically false. Most coders in the US are salary, and don't get comp time either. It's just part of the job. The underpaid thing is true though, you can make way more money coding ERP or CRM software.
 
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Miles708

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Crunch happens in every job worth doing. You can try to control it (and that's good) but it will happen from time to time.
I agree with you here, especially as you begin to wrap-up such a big project.
But it is odd anyway, if you think about it.

We're in January, the game is expected in September after being pushed back from April.
This means, these people can expect at least 8 full months of crunch. This is not the "final sprint", from the outside it looks more like an unreachable milestone, with the management knowing it almost 1 year in advance and pushing through it anyway.

I think it's good to remember that we're talking about entertainment. People endure crunch and work ridiculous hours so we can poke at happy colours on a screen. It's good to have pride in one's work, but we're not talking about curing cancer. The price is not right.
 
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