CD Projekt spent $125 million on Cyberpunk 2077 after release, repairing the game’s reputation with the Edgerunners and Update 2.0 patches, as well as the well-received Phantom Liberty expansion.
CD Projekt announced on October 5th that development of the expansion with Idris Elba cost a whopping 275 million Polish zlotys (around $62.7 million) and around 95 million Polish zlotys (around $21.6 million) for the Marketing cost.
CFO Piotr Nielubowicz also said during the CD Projekt Investor Day presentation that updating Cyberpunk to next-gen console standards, presumably including the game-changing 2.0 update, cost 178 million Polish zlotys (around $40.9 million).
The three figures combined, combining the cost of Phantom Liberty with the amount spent to bring Cyberpunk 2077 back from its poor state at launch, total 546 million Polish zloty, or around $125.9 million.
Cyberpunk 2077 itself cost 1.2 billion Polish zloty, around $316 million at the time. Comparatively, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt cost 306 million Polish zloty, about $81 million at the time, although inflation is close to $105 million.
Settlements outside CD Projekt stem from the June 2023 Xbox v. Federal Trade Commission trial, where poorly redacted documents revealed that “The Last of Us Part 2” cost $200 million to make, while Horizon: Forbidden West cost $212.
Despite the high costs of the turnaround, CD Projekt has probably pulled off one of the biggest turnaround stories in the history of video games with Cyberpunk 2077. Because the game launched in such poor condition and was removed from the PlayStation Store, Cyberpunk has now received a “Very” “Positive” rating on the PC platform Steam, with 87% of users recommending it.
CD Projekt’s Investor Day also announced a live-action cyberpunk project, sales figures for Cyberpunk 2077 and Phantom Liberty, and a shakeup in the company’s management.
Every CD Projekt Red game in development
Phantom Liberty was released on September 26th, with Update 2.0 laying the foundation a few days earlier. It completely overhauled Cyberpunk 2077 with features like a new perk system and improved AI, while also bringing closure to an Elon Musk fan theory, a nod to late racing legend Ken Block, and bizarre additions to the game’s biggest mystery.
Oddly enough, CD Projekt even offered players the option to opt out of the paid expansion’s events entirely, with certain dialogue options locking the missions outright.
In our 9/10 review, IGN said: “Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty marks a huge turnaround for CD Projekt Red’s future role-playing game, which began with the anime spin-off Cyberpunk: Edgerunners and its latest 2.0 update.”
Ryan Dinsdale is an IGN freelance reporter. He’ll be talking about The Witcher all day.