Just over a year ago, Cyberpunk 2077 was released in a truly sorry state. The developer, CD Projekt Red, has since been working tirelessly to fix the numerous bugs and last-gen performance issues (with more success on the former than the latter), which means that those fortunate enough to bag an Xbox Series X or PS5 have been left waiting for the true next-gen experience.
The original ambitious timeline published almost exactly a year ago by CD Projekt Red had the free next-gen update arriving in the second half of 2021, but by September the developer was already admitting this was up in the air.
Sure enough, 2022 rolled around with no news on the next-gen update — but it looks like there may finally be something to report on that front. In a press release confirming that said update would now arrive in the first quarter of 2022, the company said that it would arrive “alongside another major update for all platforms.” (A subsequent report claims a patch will arrive in the mid-February to early March time frame.)
And eagle-eyed Reddit users have spotted that the SteamDB entry for the game has been updated for the first time since October. While that could be a small patch (“fixed font in the credits,” jokes one user), the hope is that this is the first sign of the “major update” which, if the press release was accurate, should coincide with the true next-gen console experience.
Better late than never?
The big question is whether anybody really cares at this point. Personally, I know a few people who tried playing it at launch and bounced off with the intention of coming back later. Those people seem apathetic to the idea now. The new-game sheen is gone, even with the possibility of a bit of next-gen polish.
And while the game is, by all accounts, now worth playing if you have the right hardware, CD Projekt Red may well be regretting its generous offer of a free update to the PS5 and Xbox Series X version for buyers of the last-gen game.
A lot of buyers sought refunds on Cyberpunk 2077 (Sony famously pulled the game from its digital store and still carries a performance warning now it's been restored), and anybody now buying the game for next-gen play will enjoy bargain-basement prices due to the initial backlash.
Good news for gamers, but undoubtedly worse for the company’s already disgruntled investors.