CD Projekt Red: Hackers Are Ransoming Stolen Game Data
by Ryan Whitwam
Polish game developer CD Projekt Red has built up a rabid fan base thanks to its work on The Witcher games, most recently the widely praised The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. The company has long been working on another game not connected to the Witcher universe, known as Cyberpunk 2077. According to a statement on Twitter, CD Projekt Red has been hacked and game files from Cyberpunk 2077 are in the hands of unknown people who are demanding money for their return.
Cyberpunk 2077 is supposed to be an open world RPG not entirely unlike The Witcher games, and it will be running in CD Projekt Red’s custom REDengine 4. The game was announced way back in 2012, but there’s been little information about what the final game will be like — we don’t even know if it will be played in first or third-person. It’s based on the Cyberpunk 2020 tabletop role-playing game, which itself is based on the works of William Gibson, Bruce Sterling, and other authors in the cyberpunk genre.
With The Witcher 3 being such a huge hit, there’s a lot of interest in how Cyberpunk 2077 is shaping up. Apparently someone figured that hype was worth something to CD Projekt Red. According to the developers, a person or people gained access to internal documents related to the design of Cyberpunk 2077. If they don’t get the money (CD Projekt Red hasn’t said how much), they will release the files publicly.
CD Projekt Red says it’s not going to pay the ransom to the hackers, which means there could be a lot of leaked info about Cyberpunk 2077 in the coming days. That assumes the threat is serious, but it’s likely the documents have been stolen. If CD Projekt Red didn’t believe the data had been stolen, it likely would not have made the ransom threat public.
The statement notes that this stolen data includes concepts and design work CD Projekt Red considers “old and largely unrepresentative” of the final game. It’s been in the works since 2012, so that’s not hard to believe. Still, fans are advised to avoid any future leaks that could spoil elements of the game or provide an incorrect impression of Cyberpunk 2077. Maybe it’s just old concept art, or perhaps it’s scripts from the mysterious story line.
CD Projekt Red has been cagey about a release date for Cyberpunk 2077, but it might still be 2019 before we see a launch. Cyberpunk 2077 will be available on Windows, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.
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Originally published at www.extremetech.com on June 9, 2017.