The long wait and build up for the much anticipated CyberPunk 2077 Is almost over, But It appears we aren't getting the best news revolving around the game and studio behind this ambitious title. An E-mail leaked by an employee who wishes not to be named has been made public and fans are not pleased with the direction CD Projekt Red are going. The studio have allegedly engaged 'crunch mode' in preparation for their upcoming title, despite previously promising they would never put their staff under those working conditions again.
What is crunch?
When a developer announces 'The Crunch' on a project, most times, staff members are forced to work longer hours, extra days and night shifts whilst in the majority of places, they don't receive any extra pay. Crunches can last from weeks to months and in some cases even years.
We see the crunch more and more as games become larger projects and the main culprits are the biggest developers and publishers currently out there. Naughty Dog, Rockstar Games and many more have also received strong criticism over the working conditions of their staff.
What makes this case a larger problem than ever is that CD Projekt Red, vowed and promised that they would not engage in anymore crunches and their staff are their number one concern along with their wellbeing. Now one small positive included is the fact that in Poland, It is law to pay employees for any work so the studio's staff won't be losing out on money. However, crunch hours are compulsory and intervene with employees lives and health, which shows how important their 'Employees wellbeing' really is.
Here is the alleged E-mail received by the unnamed employee, from the studio head Adam Badowski
“Starting today, the entire (development) studio is in overdrive, your typical amount of work and one day of the weekend. I take it upon myself to receive the full backlash for the decision, I know this is in direct opposition to what we’ve said about crunch. It’s also in direct opposition to what I personally grew to believe a while back -- that crunch should never be the answer. But we’ve extended all other possible means of navigating the situation."
Now, we all know that this year has been rough and unpredictable but does this allow for justification on activation of a development crunch? Families are struggling around the world and mental health has taken a huge dive.
Outraged fans and critics have shared their anger and upset on social media outlets. Fans and gamers themselves have never taken kindly to developers which impose these kind of working conditions upon their employees. Many have already spoken out about asking CD Projekt Red to yet again delay the game, CyberPunk has already been delayed yet fans would rather have an extra 6-12 month wait for the game if it means that hundreds of employees and families won't suffer at the cost of a piece of entertainment, no matter how grand it may be.
CD Projekt Red are yet to respond to anything surrounding the situation, do you think they would risk another delay? Risk not taking part in the release of the next-gen consoles on launch? Or do you just think they're hoping this will all blow over and be forgotten about after the game has launched?