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Cyberpunk 2077 Gets New Game Director

Cyberpunk 2077's new game director previously served as its creative director.
Cyberpunk 2077's new game director previously served as its creative director. / Photo courtesy of CD Projekt Red

Former Cyberpunk 2077 creative director Gabriel Amatangelo has stepped up to the role of game director, replacing former game director Adam Badowski.

Before joining CD Projekt, Amatangelo worked as a design director on Dragon Age: Inquisition DLC and as lead designer for several Star Wars: The Old Republic expansions. He came to CD Projekt in January 2020, taking on the creative director role first thing.

Badowski will focus on other leadership duties at CD Projekt Red, per reporting from GamesIndustry.biz, including leading the studio through its RED 2.0 transition. As part of that transition, CD Projekt Red will develop multiple AAA titles at the same time, rather than focusing entirely on a single major project.

The change in Cyberpunk leadership comes on the heels of Cyberpunk 2077 quest director Mateusz Tomaszkiewicz announcing his departure from the company Friday. He had been with the company for 12 years, working on all three Witcher games in addition to Cyberpunk.

Analysis

CD Projekt remains in a precarious position following Cyberpunk's messy launch. Although the game sold well, the in-game performance, especially on consoles, caused a PR disaster for the company. In a particularly dramatic decision, Sony removed Cyberpunk 2077 from its digital storefront just after launch. Six months later, it still has yet to be restored, and joint CD Projekt CEO Adam Kicinski told investors Tuesday he has "no new information" regarding when it would return to the PlayStation Store.

Amatangelo may or may not be ready for the game director role, but investors need to see CD Projekt taking its change of strategy seriously. That means consolidating the big guns around making sure it pays off, which in turn means taking Badowski off of Cyberpunk and putting him in a more administrative position.

CD Projekt says fixing Cyberpunk is still a priority, as the studio hopes the game will continue to sell years down the line, but righting the ship as a whole outweighs the individual game.