With the release of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, CD Projekt Red set the standard at which almost all titles have been compared thanks to its expansive content and good-guy business practices. Now, the developer has weighed in on the ongoing loot box controversy, chastising companies for charging full price and under-delivering on their content.
The Witcher 3 did everything right. From its sprawling content, to two major paid expansions, to its sixteen minor DLC additions that were free to all, absolutely no one has had a bad word to say about CD Projekt Red’s masterpiece and how the developer conducted itself throughout. This has garnered a lot of faith from the community despite mention of its upcoming sci-fi RPG Cyberpunk 2077 pegged to have online elements.
When PC Gamer questioned these elements and the developer’s thoughts on the current state of the industry thanks to loot boxes, CD Projekt Red’s CEO Adam Kiciński stated that he thought it was a sorry state of affairs in which “gamers are striking back.”
Kiciński is in favour of this, saying that he “thinks it’s good for the industry” that there is a community backlash as he “hopes this will change our industry for the better,” going on to state what every gamer has been thinking for the past year: “If you buy a full priced game, you should get a big, polished piece of content, which gives you many, many hours of fun gameplay.”
“The definition of ‘many’ may vary on a title-by-title basis, but in our case it was always 50-60+ hours of the main story-line, with up to a couple of hundred of hours of side activities—if you really wanted to max out the title,” explains Kiciński on CD Projekt’s philosophy. “To me, this is a fair deal. You get what you paid for … There is no better PR than a happy gamer recommending your title to their friends.”
Publishers and developers are going to need to be careful when moving forward, taking a page out of CD Projekt Red’s book. As Kiciński rightly says, “the moment gamers feel you are reaching out for their wallet in any unfair way, they will be vocal about it,” and this could very well provide the solution that most of us crave – more titles like The Witcher 3.
KitGuru Says: Things will only get better if developers become more transparent and gamers vocalise their unhappiness with certain practices. Hopefully Kiciński is right in that it should change the industry. In the meantime, it seems that he will not let anything as bad as loot boxes hit CD Projekt’s next title, which is reassuring. Not that I had any doubt. Are you excited for the upcoming Cyberpunk 2077?