Yesterday, Bloomberg published a report alleging that CD PROJEKT RED would be forcing its employees to work overtime (i.e., “crunch”) so Cyberpunk 2077 could make its November 19 release date. The story has brewed significant controversy, being that CD PROJEKT RED executives had allegedly promised not to subject employees to extra, excessive hours.
“…an account from a CD Projekt Red employee recently as well as an email to staff earlier this week indicate that the company hasn’t lived up to its word,” Bloomberg wrote. “The employee, who asked not to be named discussing private information, said some staff had already been putting in nights and weekends for more than a year.”
In a tweet this morning, studio head Adam Badowski confirmed that Cyberpunk 2077’s developers would be working longer hours. “This is one of the hardest decisions I’ve had to make,” Badowski admitted. But he also pointed out that his employees are going to be well compensated for the trouble.
“These last 6 weeks are our final sprint on a project we’ve all spent much of our lives on,” Badowski wrote. “Something we care for deeply. The majority of the team understands that push, especially in light of the fact that we’ve just sent the game to cert and every day brings us visibly closer to shipping a game we want to be proud of.”
“This is one of the hardest decisions I’ve had to make, but everyone is well compensated for every extra hour they put in. And, like in recent years, 10% of the annual profit our company generates in 2020 will be split directly among the team.”
Debates are now raging as to whether overtime in the video games industry is as severe as reporters like to claim. While nobody likes being away from their families longer than they have to, proponents argue that they’re getting paid handsomely (in this case, at least) for a bit of extra work. Also, the contracts that they willfully signed probably mentioned overtime somewhere.