Cyberpunk 2077 Developer Talks About Microtransactions in Games
Cyberpunk 2077 developer CD Projekt Red has spoken out against adding microtransactions after a game's launch in the past, and its Krakow studio head recently clarified the company’s position regarding Cyberpunk’s post-launch monetization. The highly anticipated Cyberpunk 2077 is set for release next April, and CD Projekt Red is beginning to open up to fans about its plans for the game.
CD Projekt Red resisted introducing lots of microtransactions into The Witcher 3 after its release, instead opting for a mix of paid and free DLC. After launch, CD Projekt Red added small improvements like new armor, hairstyles, and a new game plus mode were added to the game for free, and only charged for two large DLC expansions, Hearts of Stone and Blood and Wine. Both the expansions themselves and CD Projekt Red’s refusal to load its game with microtransactions were well received. When it was announced that Cyberpunk 2077 would have online elements, some players worried that that would mean the introduction of more microtransactions or even elements of the “games as a service” model. CD Projekt Red, however, has assured fans that that won’t be the case.
John Mamais, head of CD Projekt Red’s Krakow studio, recently spoke about the developer’s position on microtransactions for Cyberpunk 2077 during an interview with Gamespot. According to Mamais, the studio isn’t currently discussing DLC for the game, but says that using the same strategy it did with The Witcher 3 would be “the smart way to go.” More generally, Mamais called post-launch microtransactions a bad move, saying that the extra money they can bring in isn’t worth the loss of reputation with players.
I think it's a bad idea to do microtransactions after you release a game. It seems like it's very profitable, though. It's probably a hard decision for the guy that runs the business to decide if we should do it or not. But if everyone hates it, why would we do something like that and lose the goodwill of our customers?
CD Projekt Red’s strategy seems to be quality over quantity, with the recent revelation that Cyberpunk 2077's map will be smaller than that of The Witcher 3. Instead of overwhelming players with locations to explore, CD Projekt Red is aiming to make the environment in Cyberpunk 2077 as detailed as possible and the interaction players have with it more impactful. That’s part of why the studio says it went with a first-person view for the game, a move that was initially met with some skepticism.
It’s reassuring to hear that Cyberpunk 2077 won’t be overloaded with microtransactions, which have plagued recent games like Ghost Recon: Breakpoint. Of course, after a game as successful as The Witcher 3, the studio can likely afford to choose keeping customers happy over the extra income that microtransactions would bring.