Cyberpunk is still a "long, long" way off being fixed... but in 2021 there's hope for us all

Cyberpunk 2077 was meant to be the release of 2020.

Despite the game not being a Next Gen exclusive, it was the title we all looked to after a difficult year for so many.

The success of The Witcher 3 rightfully makes any CD Projekt Red title a "must-buy", and let's not forget Geralt, Ciri & co. also had difficulties early on.

Even after the catalogue of delays, we were waiting for Night City to explode into life, and it looks as if we'll be waiting for a while yet.

Cyberpunk Roadmap

So, quickly skimming over the fact Cyberpunk 2077 was delayed three times from April 2020 to December (and had been in development since 2013), here's a whistle-stop tour of what has occurred in Night City since launch:

Release Date: 10 December 2020

Day 1 patch: 10 December 2020

Second Day 1 patch: 10 December 2020

Hotfix 1.03: 10 December 2020

Hotfix 1.04 12 December 2020

Hotfix 1.05 19 December 2020

Hotfix 1.06 23 December 2020

So that brings us to today, and we know two substantial patches will be arriving in January & February 2021.

But there's even more work in the pipeline beyond that.

CD Projekt issue apology

Co-founder of CD Projekt Marcin Iwinski took to YouTube to state the latest with Cyberpunk 2077.

He said: "I, and the entire leadership team, are deeply sorry for this... I assure you that we will do out best to regain your trust".

With players offered refunds for the game, and the game removed from the PS Store - it's hard to remember a game launch going this poorly.

At least it's getting better though right... right?

What's Next?

Cyberpunk 2077 is yet to return to the PS Store since being removed a month ago.

Two patches, as opposed to previous hotfixes are set to arrive in January and February - so we should at least see some stability on current consoles inside the next six weeks.

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LONG WAY BACK - More Cyberpunk content is on the way

Thereafter, the game will continue to be tweaked, with the main events being Free DLCs (initially planned to arrive soon after launch) and finally the long-awaited Next-Gen console update.

CD Projekt is yet to offer release dates, but we expect to the DLCs to arrive in spring once the game is stable, whilst the PS5 & Xbox Series X upgrades are set to arrive "in the second half of the year".

As for 2022 and beyond, the mystery remains.

Is there a way back for CD Projekt?

In short, yes - but it is going to take some time.

Fans, and the CD Projekt devs themselves, should almost pretend the Cyberpunk 2077 launch didn't happen.

Three "hotfixes" on day 1 was a rocky start, and a further three within two weeks is frankly frightening.

Fortunately, the team took the decision to stop producing hotfixes and actively look to substantially stabilise the game in early 2021.

UNMET POTENTIAL - There's no doubting the cosmetic beauty of Cyberpunk
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UNMET POTENTIAL - There's no doubting the cosmetic beauty of Cyberpunk

We are still waiting for concrete news on Patch 1.1 about what the team has done to rectify things, but it is at least a step in the right direction - as is the public apology by Mr Iwinski.

Nowadays, the game "launch" has never been more redundant.

Of course, AAA titles will want to get off to a flier to perk interest - but look at GTA V for example, the game arrived on PS3 and Xbox 360 in 2013 and is perhaps stronger than ever.

What CD Projekt must do, once they are truly happy with the game, is give a reason for not only players to pick up the game, but to continue to play.

Assassin's Creed Valhalla is a great case study in this day and age of how to keep players on board.

The 12th edition in the series has an epic story mode as expected, but will keep players returning with Season Passes and Expansions.

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BLUEPRINT TO SUCCESS - Ubisoft seem to have nailed release and post release for AC Valhalla

Not only did they give a reason to play the game at launch, but there was a pre-order incentive with the Legend of Beowulf.

We may be in a quiet phase for the game, some two months after launch, but with a festive theme in December, and the first expansion "Wrath of the Druids" as well as a second round of free content both set to arrive in the spring - the Ubisoft title is set to have a long tail.

The road back for Cyberpunk 2077 will be tough, but with so many facets to the game, with gangs, stunning vehicles, endless customisation and rumours of a multiplayer mode, they can wrestle public opinion back.

Cyberpunk was the gaming flop of 2020, but with everyone looking to bounce back in 2021, we're backing Night City to be the oasis of 2021.

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