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The Witcher 3’s current-gen port has been delayed yet again

CD Projekt Red has announced that its current-gen port of The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt will not be releasing any time soon. In a post on the game’s Twitter account, the developer said that the game’s port, which was supposed to come out during the second fiscal quarter of this year, has been postponed “until further notice.” The game had earlier been delayed to this year.

We have decided to have our in-house development team conduct the remaining work on the next-gen version of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. We are currently evaluating the scope of work to be done and thus have to postpone Q2 release until further notice. 1/2

— The Witcher (@witchergame) April 13, 2022

CD Projekt Red’s decision to delay the long-awaited Witcher 3 port comes after it also decided to move further development of the game in-house. Prior to this move, the game’s current-gen port was being developed by Saber Interactive, the same team that brought the game to the Nintendo Switch. The port was originally slated to release in 2021, along with the current-gen version of CD Projekt Red’s latest game, Cyberpunk 2077.

Cyberpunk 2077‘s current-gen port launched this past February, adding a smattering of new features to the troubled title.

Whenever it arrives, The Witcher 3‘s current-gen port is aimed at revitalizing the game, which was originally launched in 2015. The game will be able to run on current-gen consoles at a 4K resolution and 60 frames per second (fps). It’s not clear if other features like ray tracing or DualSense compatibility, which would add haptic feedback, are also being added. Cyberpunk 2077‘s current-gen version added ray tracing to the game, though it was toned down.

Today’s news comes hot on the heels of CD Projekt Red’s announcement that it is currently working on another entry in the Witcher franchise. The tease, posted to Twitter on March 21, showed a Witcher talisman submerged in the snow. CD Projekt Red’s upcoming Witcher game does not have a release date.

Otto Kratky
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Otto Kratky is a freelance writer with many homes. You can find his work at Digital Trends, GameSpot, and Gamepur. If he's…
The Witcher reveal repeats Cyberpunk 2077’s biggest mistake
A player points a gun at a cyborg in Cyberpunk 2077's reveal trailer.

On March 21, CD Projekt Red confirmed a new The Witcher game while revealing a new Unreal Engine 5 partnership with Epic Games. Shortly after that announcement, CD Projekt Red's Global PR Director Radek Grabowski had to clarify some crucial details about this new game and the Epic Games partnership in a tweet:
https://twitter.com/gamebowski/status/1506022957591797760
While this tweet clarifies the biggest misconceptions about CD Projekt Red's The Witcher announcement, it also highlights that the developer announced this game way too early and vaguely. CD Projekt Red is already losing control of some of the discourse around the game and risks repeating one of the biggest mistakes of Cyberpunk 2077's development and marketing: Overpromising.
Cyberpunk 2077's big mistake
CD Projekt Red announced Cyberpunk 2077 in May 2012 at a press conference. At the time, the developer promised features like a "gripping non-linear story filled with life and detail" and a variety of character classes, weapons, upgrades, implants, and more to choose from. It said the game would "set [a] new standard in the futuristic RPG genre with an exceptional gaming experience."
Cyberpunk 2077 would not release until December 2020, over eight years later. But in the meantime, CD Projekt Red continued to tease the title with trailers and interviews, highlighting the game's ambitious scope and vision. CD Projekt Red developers hyped up how the main story and sidequests intertwined, how the game would feature multiplayer, how cops would be very reactive, and more. Although the game looked and sounded very impressive prior to its release, many of these features and promises were either missing or half-baked in their implementation into Cyberpunk 2077.
Cyberpunk 2077 Teaser Trailer
For eight years, an RPG that was supposed to change the genre forever was promised, but in the end, all we got was a fairly standard open-world RPG with a bevy of technical problems at release. The massive backlash happened because people were so excited for Cyberpunk 2077, partly because CD Projekt Red hyped up all of these ambitious features over eight years.
The reality is that game development is an arduous journey that doesn't always go according to plan. Designs change, features are cut, and sometimes the finished product just doesn't come together. CD Projekt Red probably never meant to lie to its fans, but priorities and development timelines shifted and what the developer ultimately delivered with Cyberpunk 2077 wasn't up to snuff.
As CD Projekt Red made the mistake of announcing Cyberpunk 2077 too early and overpromising, I thought the studio would what to share more details on its next game until it was close to release. That was not the case. 
Initial Confirmation
CD Projekt Red was not willing to share a development time frame or release window as part of The Witcher announcement, so it's likely that this game is still several years away. Although the developer didn't reveal many details at this time, announcing the next The Witcher game so early gives s the Polish studio plenty of time to do so. For example, the game's director is already promising that there will be no crunch during the development of this game, something people may hold him accountable for as stories about the game's development emerge. CD Projekt Red must be cautious about what it shares about this new game before launch if it doesn't want another PR disaster, and it already seems to be getting a bit out of hand.  
Grabowski's tweet indicates that there are already some misconceptions about the game. That will likely exponentially worsen as CD Projekt Red continues to tease this title in job listings, interviews, and trailers. It's a dangerous approach, so why did the developer make this "initial confirmation" happen so early? There are several reasons why this could be the case. First off, most of this announcement was focused on CD Projekt Red's partnership with Epic Games and the use of Unreal Engine 5, and the developer wanted to confirm the first game that will be part of this partnership to make it more exciting for fans. 

Meanwhile, CD Projekt Red is still recovering from the backlash toward Cyberpunk 2077's rocky launch. Announcing a follow-up title to The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt now not only restores a little bit of goodwill with fans and investors but will also attract some Unreal Engine-experienced developers who might be nervous to come to CD Projekt Red following Cyberpunk 2077. 2022 has been a year of anticlimatic and purposefully vague game announcements. CD Projekt Red's The Witcher announcement is simply the latest one to be part of this trend, but it's also one of the most worrying because this developer has made this mistake before.  
While CD Projekt Red felt pressured to confirm this game early, they need to be very careful if they don't want to repeat the mistakes of Cyberpunk 2077. The best course of action for CD Projekt Red to take now is to stay completely silent until it has a clear idea of what the finished game will entail. If that isn't the case, this could all be building to disappointment in the year 2030. 

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A new The Witcher game is in development at CD Projekt Red
A talisman depicting a dog with glowing red eyes lays in the snow.

In a surprise post on the franchise's website, CD Projekt Red announced that it is currently developing a new game based on The Witcher, one that isn't a spinoff focusing on Gwent.

https://twitter.com/witchergame/status/1505945110722326529

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Cyberpunk 2077’s current gen update is out now
V looking very angry in Cyberpunk 2077.

In a lengthy stream detailing a suite of improvements coming to Cyberpunk 2077, developer CD Projekt Red announced that the game's current-gen update is available today.

Cyberpunk 2077 — Next-Gen Gameplay | PlayStation 5

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