Cyberpunk 2077 sells 13 million despite launch controversy


Cyberpunk 2077 was many gamers’ most anticipated game of 2020, but it’s likely many were feeling let down when they got their copy of the game.

This is especially true if they had pre-ordered a PS4 or Xbox One version of the game, as Cyberpunk 2077 is a mess on last-gen consoles. People who were expecting a glorious, sci-fi open-world video game instead got an ugly, poorly-performing game with so many bugs and glitches that many players were immediately thinking of hitting the refund button…

Despite this, though, the game appears to have been mostly a success to date. Polish developer CD Projekt Red not only sold 8 million copies of Cyberpunk 2077 before launch (talk about pre-order interest for this game), completely covering its development costs, but it recently announced that it had sold-through more than 13 million copies of Cyberpunk 2077, as was recently reported on IGN.

What’s most impressive is that this number factors in all refunds, which are bound to be quite a few, taking into account how many players on PS4 and Xbox One were disgusted with the game’s performance.

According to the Polish company, the 13 million figure “represents the estimated volume of retail sales across all hardware platforms (factoring in returns submitted by retail clients in brick-and-mortar as well as digital storefronts), i.e. the “sell-through” figure, less all refund requests e-mailed directly to the Company by the publication date of this report in the framework of the “Help Me Refund” campaign”.

Not bad then, even if the game still has to sell a fair amount more in order to reach the 25 million copies sold mark which analysts had forecast for the game’s first 12 months. This will be made more difficult by the fact that Sony recently yanked the game from the PlayStation Store, and is also offering full refunds to all owners of the game on its store, as was recently covered on The Guardian.

This means that PS4 and PS5 owners won’t be able to get hold of the game, at least until Sony decides to bring it back to the PS Store. Developer CD Projekt Red is currently working on major patches for the game, which should bring the PS4 (and Xbox One) versions of the game more in line with the new-gen console versions and PC (these patches will be released in January and February according to the company).

All this has been massively controversial, as CD Projekt Red flat out lied about the state of Cyberpunk 2077 on last-gen consoles, saying that the game’s performance was “surprisingly good” on these consoles, while Sony delisting a major, AAA game like this is something that has no real precedent.

And despite the rosy sales figures, CD Projekt’s (which is parent company of developer CD Projekt Red) stock market woes continue, as its shares have dropped more than 30 % since early December.

According to GameSpot, the trio of executives which control CD Projekt (Marcin Iwinski, Adam Kicinski and Piotr Nielubowicz), plus a fourth owner, may have lost more than $1 billion US dollars in wealth over the Cyberpunk 2077 fiasco.

But leaving the woes of rich executives aside, what really matters now is that CD Projekt is able to fix the PS4 and Xbox One versions of the game, so that those who paid for a last-gen version of the game can enjoy an experience that’s closer to what PC owners and those on Xbox Series X and PS5 have been playing (ironing out all the glitches and bringing all versions of the game in line with each other appears to be the company’s current goal though).

CD Projekt may have lost a great deal of player trust over Cyberpunk 2077’s awful launch, but it has still sold a boatload of copies of the game, so the least the Polish company can do is make sure all its paying customers don’t have to wait too long in order to properly enjoy a game (Cyberpunk 2077) many had been waiting years to play.