The problem of the developer crisis has been appearing a lot lately, with extensive reports on the problem that affects many important studies, such as Rockstar, Epic Games, NetherRealm, BioWare and more. CD Project Red has been relatively open about the fact that it goes through periods of "crisis" during development. Now ahead of the next Cyberpunk 2077 boost to launch, the studio has approached the subject once again.
Before Cyberpunk 2077 shows the next E3 in June, Marcin Iwiński, from the Project Red CD, approached Kotaku to address the issue of the crisis. As Iwiński says, the studio is "known for treating players with respect" and "would like to be known for treating developers with respect."
CD Project Red has a "non-mandatory contraction policy", which has existed for a long time and is also current in many other studies, including Rockstar. In the future, CD Project wants to push this harder, making it clear to developers that they do not necessarily have to work nights and weekends.
"We have been communicating clearly to people that, of course, there are certain times when we have to work harder," with E3 last year as an example. Still, Iwiński wants the studio "to be more humane and treat people with respect," creating an environment where employees can take time off when necessary without being seen badly.
Ultimately, this is intended as a public message from CD Project aimed at your employees. Iwiński wants employees to feel they can manage when they do not want to get overtime without fear for their jobs. Meanwhile, however, for the final push in Cyberpunk 2077, there will be a structured free time. This means that developers will be asked to limit their free time to specific periods, such as the summer immediately after E3, or the winter towards the end of the year.
CD Project Network will conduct employee surveys to see how they feel about the general situation of the crisis and will see how to make changes accordingly. Most of the plan will already be implemented during the rest of the development of Cyberpunk 2077, but it is expected that, when it comes to future projects, there will be more structure to avoid a major and sustained crisis.
Says KitGuru: Crunch may not be mandatory in many studios, but because of the collaborative nature of creating games, it's easy to see how you would feel pressured to participate. After all, no one wants to be the person in a group project by holding everyone else down or slowing things down. No one seems to have a solution for this, but begins to hear about positive changes as more students focus on it.
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