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Cat Bussell

CD Projekt wants to use AI in development 'but not replace people'

A woman decides which lower jaw to wear before a night out.

CD Projekt's new joint CEO Adam Badowski revealed plans to incorporate AI into the studio's development cycle and also offered updates on the upcoming The Witcher and Cyberpunk 2077 sequels. 

In an interview with Reuters, Badowski revealed that CD Projekt has formed a team to look at the applications of AI for game development. "We think that AI is something that can help improve certain processes in game production, but not replace people," said the joint CEO. 

Badowski also dropped some hints as to how the next Witcher and Cyberpunk are doing. CD Projekt aims to start production on 'Polaris' - the codename for the next Witcher game - this year. "We'd like to have around 400 people working on the project by the middle of the year," elaborated Badowski.

The Cyberpunk sequel, codenamed 'Orion,' is still in its conceptual phase according to CD Projekt's other joint CEO Michal Nowakowski. That said, the studio's aim is still to have 80 people working on the project by the end of the year. Reuters also reported that CD Projekt was considering the inclusion of multiplayer elements for the Cyberpunk sequel, but gave no further details. 

Badowski was also keen to stress that the studio had learned lessons from Cyberpunk 2077's tumultuous, bug-ridden launch back in 2020. "We believe that in the future we'll avoid a premiere like the one we faced with Cyberpunk 2077," he said. 

CD Projekt isn't the only game developer to announce a turn towards AI in recent days. Japanese industry powerhouse Square Enix recently announced its intention "to be aggressive in applying AI and other cutting-edge technologies to both our content development and publishing functions." 

This isn't CD Projekt's first foray into the world of AI either. Cyberpunk 2077's well-received Phantom Liberty expansion used AI to replace a deceased voice actor who played Viktor Vektor, one of the game's key supporting characters.

Whatever shape this new push towards AI takes for CD Projekt, we sincerely hope it doesn't lead to more layoffs like we saw last year

CD Projekt is responsible for some of the best RPGs and best story games ever made.

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