Over the last few months, CD Projekt Red has announced a whole mess of projects, including a new The Witcher saga built on Unreal Engine 5, an open-world remake of the original The Witcher, a Cyberpunk 2077 sequel, and “Project Sirius,” a new take on The Witcher universe in development at the Boston-based studio The Molasses Flood (previously of Drake Hollow and The Flame in The Flood).
Well, it seems like something pretty major has changed regarding the development of Molasses Flood’s game, as CD Projekt Red has issued a fresh memo to investors, saying they’ve re-evaluated the “scope and commercial potential of the original concept of Project Sirius” and that “they’re formulating a new framework for this project.”
“The decision is based on results of evaluation of the scope and commercial potential of the original concept of Project Sirius, and ongoing work on formulating a new framework for this project.”
It seems CD Projekt Red is intentionally taking a hit on what they’ve spent thus far on Project Sirius (around $7.5 million in 2022 and $2.2 million thus far in 2023) rather than amortizing the expenses over the course of years as most companies do with development costs. This would seem to indicate that they’re largely throwing out the work they’ve done as they don’t expect to profit off of any of it.
Little about Project Sirius has been revealed, other than it will be an “innovative take” on The Witcher universe and will tell an “unforgettable story.” Earlier this year, The Molasses Flood job ads indicated the game will feature action-based combat, co-op, procedurally-generated elements, and branching or non-linear storytelling. It sounds like more of a multiplayer live-service game, with some story elements, was the goal rather than a more traditional RPG experience. Whether Project Sirius changed before or after those job ads were posted isn’t known for sure, but according to today’s info, CDPR continued to spend on the original vision of Project Sirius for the first two months of this year (the job ads were posted in January).
It’s hard not to be a bit concerned CDPR is already rebooting one of their upcoming slate of projects, as a lot of people feel the company is taking on too much. That said, Project Sirius is a spinoff being made at a studio separate from the core CDPR teams, so perhaps this is just an indication of problems at The Molasses Flood and nothing more.
What do you think? Interested to see what form Project Sirius may end up taking? Of this latest news already putting you off the project?