You’ve undoubtedly known about crunch but in case this is the first you’re hearing about it, the term is not one that is shined upon. It’s actually a rough period that some developers are forced into at various video game studios though there seems to be a better push these days to terminate the crunch culture altogether. Despite this, there are still some studios that are put into a crunch mode to make their deadlines.
Overall, going into crunch is essentially putting in a whole lot more time into video game development. This means longer hours, working weekends, and not having much of a life outside of work. As a result, these conditions can be brutal physically and mentally. We’ve certainly heard enough horror stories from developers that had to go through crunch in the past that makes us hope that more studios can get away with not entering any type of crunch period for their projects.
One of the biggest video game titles that will be launching this year is CD Projekt Red’s Cyberpunk 2077. The same studio that gave us The Witcher series is bringing out a brand new RPG experience and while it has a ton of hype behind it, fans are being forced to wait a bit longer before its released into the market. Last week the development studio took to their official Twitter account in order to announce that Cyberpunk 2077 has been delayed.
While the game is done completely and playable, the development studio is looking to get a bit more time into the overall polishing efforts of the title. Likewise, they will continue to playtest the build to ensure that there are a few bugs as possible before it launches into the market. In order to keep everything in schedule for the IP’s new release, the development studio confirmed during a Q&A that developers would be entering a crunch to some degree.
We’re not sure just how the conditions are for the final stretch of Cyberpunk 2077 but hearing the term crunch has put quite a few people upset. Now an official statement from the International Game Developers Association has come out during a conversation with GameDaily.biz.
“Work-life balance is critical for the mental health of developers, and studios should consider the well being of their employees when determining a new release date. Gamers have become more aware of the pressures on game developers and they are more understanding of delayed launches.
A studio as massively successful as CDPR would hopefully have the means to support a longer development cycle to reduce crunch. While they have previously noted their crunch periods are not mandatory, the pressure to crunch is strong just from supporting longer hours and even stronger when directly asking developers to work nights and weekends.”
Currently, Cyberpunk 2077 is releasing on September 17, 2020, for the PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Google Stadia platforms.