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Ali Jones

The Witcher 4 will enter its production phase this year, and CD Projekt Red confirms it won't be using AI to replace developers

The Witcher 4 Polaris .

The Witcher 4 is set to enter its production phase during 2024, with plans for 400 developers to be working on the game by the summer.

Speaking to Reuters, CD Projekt Red co-CEO Adam Badowski said that "we'd like to have around 400 people working on the project by the middle of the year."

While not officially titled The Witcher 4 yet, CDPR confirmed the existence of the project, codenamed Polaris, back in October 2022. Since then, there have been minimal updates on the game, though the developer did confirm that "the largest part" of its team was working on Polaris back in November.

That suggests that increasing numbers of CD Projekt Red employees are moving away from Cyberpunk 2077 and onto The Witcher 4. That lines up with both CDPR's investor reports and the fact that work on its sci-fi RPG is largely expected to be winding down after the release of its acclaimed Phantom Liberty expansion late last year.

While the studio seems to be scaling up its efforts on The Witcher 4, Badowski's co-CEO, Michal Nowakowski, stated that while it's looked at the potential use of AI in its development pipeline, any work used will likely not be visible to players: "We think that AI is something that can help improve certain process in game production, but not replace people."

Elsewhere, Badowski reaffirmed the suggestion that the team has learned its lessons from the difficult 2020 release of Cyberpunk 2077, a message that has been oft-repeated since CD Projekt began the process of reversing that game's initial poor reception. 

The Witcher 4 is the first entry in an entire new trilogy, but that's just one aspect of a swathe of upcoming CD Projekt Red games expected in the coming years. Those include a Cyberpunk 2077 sequel and multiple Witcher spin-offs. There's no release date confirmed for the new Witcher saga, but CDPR has suggested that once the first game launches, the other two planned games in the trilogy will release within six years.

The Witcher 4 devs want their new RPG to be a good entry point, even if you didn't play The Witcher 3.

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