Cyberpunk 2077 is one of the biggest games coming this year for consoles and PC. But one platform it’s not headed to any time soon is Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass. That’s according to developer CD Projekt Red lead PR boss Radek Grabowski.
During a conversation on Twitter, I used Cyberpunk 2077 as an example of a big-name game that Microsoft could potentially try to get on Game Pass soon after release. That prompted a reply from Grabowski.
“You have to pick another example, Jeff,” reads his message. “No Game Pass plans for Cyberpunk 2077.”
This isn’t surprising. Anticipation for Cyberpunk 2077 is sky-high, and that is likely going to mean blockbuster sales for the open-world sci-fi role-playing adventure. Agreeing to put Cyberpunk 2077 on Game Pass could eat into some of those sales. After all, that’s the idea. You pay $10 per month to get games as part of a subscription instead of spending full price on them.
But Game Pass could also start to erode the value perception of major video games. A PlayStation owner might hesitate on spending $60 on Cyberpunk if they know that their Xbox counterparts are getting the game as part of a Netflix-style service. Protecting the perception that games are worth $60 at launch is crucial to the long-term viability of big-budget projects that CD Projekt Red specializes in.
So then why are we even talking about this? I’ve heard unsubstantiated rumors that Cyberpunk could end up on Game Pass soon after release. And Microsoft has a co-marketing deal for the game. This is also a strategy that makes sense for Xbox. But if a marquee, third-party release ends up on Game Pass near its release, it’s not Cyberpunk.