As we march towards the release of CD Projekt Red's next open-world RPG opus Cyberpunk 2077, the developer behind The Witcher series has regaled prospective players with a steady trickle of tantalizing new snippets about the game.
Among details about Cyberpunk 2077's take on religion and the slowly fading glare of Keanu Reeves' E3 spectacle, it has emerged that CD Projekt Red is keen to ensure all players get the same Cyberpunk 2077 experience regardless of whether they jump on the pre-order bandwagon or not. As such, pre-orders won't feature any bonus in-game content whatsoever - no gameplay boosts, no exclusive skins, and no content inaccessible past launch date.
Redditor TLOU2_God_pls_now contacted CD Projekt Red on Twitter to ask whether pre-ordering the PlayStation 4 version of Cyberpunk 2077 would bag players any in-game bonuses. CD Projekt Red came back with a reply that acts as a welcome panacea for those wearied by the ever-pervasive baiting with exclusive content.
"No, we don't do that. Every person that buys the game gets exactly the same in-game content, no matter if they buy it in pre-orders, on release date or 2 years later."
Cyberpunk 2077 Pre-Order, DLC, and Standard Edition Done Right
CD Projekt Red's customer-friendly approach doesn't stop there. While other companies are happy to release DLC made up of hastily assembled cosmetic packs and short storylines, the Polish powerhouse provides expansions akin to games in themselves.
Take The Witcher 3 DLC Blood and Wine, which dropped players into the stunning duchy of Toussaint with over 30 hours of gameplay revolving around a narrative arc of royal intrigue and murderous vampires.
The physical edition of Cyberpunk 2077 will follow very much in the footsteps of The Witcher 3 with CD Projekt Red carefully curating a package that puts most other games to shame.
The standard edition features no less than a full-color map, postcards, stickers, and a world compendium alongside a trove of digital content including the game's OST, an art booklet, wallpapers, and more.
And, that's just the basic physical version of the game.
CD Projekt Red Is an Unfortunate Exception
That CD Projekt Red's approach to player experience and content appears so alien in today's gaming landscape is a testament to the ludicrous nature and prominence of the pre-order model. With most games bearing a price tag of $60 at launch, experiencing a game in all its glory free of any exclusive pre-order-obscured content should be a given.
The fact that game companies see fit to cut off players and, more alarmingly, that players go along largely unperturbed, further cements CD Projekt Red's position as gaming's uncontested good guy.
There's an inherent ethical line to cross when manipulating player FOMO and an increasing number of companies seem all too comfortable bounding over it.
As one of the biggest game developers on the planet and with one of the most anticipated titles of this generation in hand, CD Projekt Red could quite easily package Cyberpunk 2077 pre-orders with an extra mission or two and sales would be unaffected. It doesn't, and that is as refreshing as it is worthy of admiration.
And our money.