Sony is withdrawing the much-publicized Cyberpunk 2077 from PlayStation stores around the world, the company said on Friday, after a flood of complaints and ridicule about bugs, compatibility issues and even health risks.
The dystopian-themed title is reportedly one of the most expensive video games ever made, and its release on December 10 was highly anticipated, but the launch was far from smooth.
Some gamers have posted glitchy graphics videos on Twitter, with others pairing screenshots from much older games with sarcastic comments like, “I’m blown away by the graphics and environment of Cyberpunk on PS4!”
“SIE (Sony Interactive Entertainment) is committed to ensuring a high level of customer satisfaction, so we will begin offering a full refund for all players who have purchased Cyberpunk 2077 via PlayStation Store,” Sony said on Friday.
“SIE will also remove Cyberpunk 2077 from PlayStation Store until further notice.”
This week, Warsaw-based game developer CD Projekt RED apologized and promised to “fix bugs and crashes” with patches in January and February, while offering refunds to players unwilling to wait.
The release of Cyberpunk 2077 was delayed twice this year and CD Projekt RED was forced to add health warnings after a reviewer complained that it caused a seizure.
Last week, the Polish company said it was looking for a “more permanent solution” to address the health risk “as soon as possible”.
The delays, which the company attributed to the coronavirus pandemic and the complexity of creating such a vast world for nine different platforms, including Xbox and PC consoles, have sparked a violent reaction and even death threats.
Despite the problems, entertainment rating website Metacritic gave Cyberpunk 2077 a score of 87 out of 100, based on 69 reviews.
But player ratings on Metacritic were a bit less optimistic, with Cyberpunk 2077 scoring 7 out of 10 based on reviews from over 20,500 users.
The main character is the armed “V”, who makes his way through Night City, a conflicting American megacity.
The game also features the face and voice of Hollywood star Keanu Reeves, best known for the Matrix trilogy and John Wick films.
Metacritic describes the game as “an open-world action-adventure story set in Night City, a megacity obsessed with power, glamor and body modification.”
CD Projekt RED spent around 1.2 billion (around Rs. 2,400 crore) to make Cyberpunk 2077, according to analysts from Polish bank BOS, which would make it one of the most expensive games ever made.
The company rose to global prominence five years ago thanks to its huge hit The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, a dark fantasy whose monster-slaying hero is endowed with superhuman powers.
But it has lost billions in value since Cyberpunk 2077’s launch last week, stock data showed Monday.
Sony shares were up 2.7% on Friday morning to 10,295 JPY (around Rs. 7,300).
Delays are becoming more common in the gaming industry as games get bigger, more expensive, and with more people involved.
The coronavirus pandemic has further complicated things this year, with many studios forced to work with developers working from home.
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