Cyberpunk and Witcher Sequels to be Tested on All Platforms starting Day 1, CDPR Optimizing U5

At this point, it’s clear some things went pretty fundamentally wrong with the development of Cyberpunk 2077. The game was released too early, but it looks like it was barely tested on some platforms. Some features were also promised without devs being able to verify if they could be implemented. The result was a game that will probably never live up to CD Projekt Red’s pre-launch boasts, no matter how many patches are released.

CD Projekt Red has announced an ambitious slate, which includes a new The Witcher trilogy, two spinoff Witcher titles, a Cyberpunk 2077 sequel and a whole new IP. It’s potentially exciting news, but given the messiness of Cyberpunk 2077’s development, many fans are understandably concerned. Thankfully, it seems CDPR realizes where they went wrong, as they’ve released a dev video in which they promise to follow “good engineering practices” going forward. Below, you can check it out.

These good engineering practices include following the “always working game rule,” which means all future CDPR games’ core systems will be working right from the beginning so they can be continually iterated and improved upon. As part of this, CDPR will constantly be testing their new games on all target systems – no more just focusing on PC and crossing their fingers the console ports will magically work.

“One example of [good engineering practices] This is our “always-working game rule”, which we follow. It allows us to quickly identify and address project risks early in development. […] By composing elements such as animation, control, or UI, we can build complete gameplay features. This allows us to thoroughly test them and iterate on them many times.

Stability and performance across all target platforms is a major concern in the development process. In this context, the “always working” game rule also applies. We test gameplay quality on every platform from the get-go, and do not focus only on the developers’ PC build.”

CD Projekt Red also plans to found a “usability lab,” where new games will be continually tested with real players to make sure everything’s coming together well. A lot of these better practices are possible thanks to the switch to the better documented and supported Unreal Engine 5, but CDPR isn’t content to just sit back and use Epic’s off-the-shelf tools. While CDPR won’t be using their own engine anymore, they plan to optimize UE5 with new tools, which they hope will give them a competitive edge over others also using Epic’s tech.

“Just because we’re using Unreal Engine doesn’t mean we no longer invest in technologies. We need to develop systems to power our gaming games. This requires adaptation of engine components to better suit our creative needs. [ambitions]. Based on our experience with large, story-driven, open-world RPGs […] We are enriching UE5 by adding tools that enable the creation of high-quality content. This is our goal: to make sure that these tools are compatible with the unique nature of our studio and the games that we plan to develop.

An example of a good example is […] Systems that allow the development of narrative elements, including quests. We have many great ideas about how to improve. [our tools] even further and then leverage them as our competitive advantage.”

Overall, it sounds like there are positive steps being taken. Now, the challenge is perhaps to take on too many. According to CDPR, thanks to Unreal Engine 5 they’re now working on two concurrent projects, and that will probably expand in the future. The focus should remain on quality, we hope.

What do YOU think? Is CD Projekt Red being truthful? Will Unreal Engine 5’s new engineering standards and improved Witcher and Cyberpunk game design help them?

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