Cyberpunk 2077 QA staff allege deception and bad management, again

Employees at Quantic Lab have spoken out against management, alleging false client claims and a lack of experience.
cyberpunk 2077 multiplayer mode cancelled

Employees at quality assurance firm Quantic Lab have again spoken out against company management, alleging team leaders deceived clients about staff capabilities, and intensely pressured teams with unrealistic expectations as a result. This aligns with claims made in June 2022 that developer CD Projekt Red was misled about the experience level and volume of workers assigned to QA on Cyberpunk 2077.

Speaking anonymously to PC Gamer, several employees claimed management at the company was accepting projects the team did not have the capacity to handle – and had been doing so with consistency.

‘From a team of 30 people [initially assigned to Cyberpunk 2077], I think only 10 of them had experience on QA,’ one source told PC Gamer. Allegedly, none of these testers had more than one year of experience, despite claims to the contrary.

Staff were allegedly pulled from other projects to help with Cyberpunk 2077, as well as another flagship game, NBA 2K – leaving smaller projects woefully understaffed and lacking much-needed experience.

CD Projekt Red reportedly contacted the Quantic Lab team multiple times to speak of the ‘underwhelming’ performance of QA teams, which is likely what led to the studio choosing not to extend an ongoing contract with the firm, despite it being ‘open to extension’.

‘I wouldn’t blame Cyberpunk on [Quantic], CDPR still released the damn thing,’ one employee told PC Gamer. ‘But the fact that the game was in the state that it was, [Quantic] contributed.’

According to a former employee speaking to the website, it was ‘standard practice’ at Quantic Lab to misrepresent the size and experience of teams working on projects, in order to take on more contracts. This meant smaller projects were frequently understaffed, and that staff were pushed to breaking point during testing.

Read: Fallout 76 developers say studio crunch and mismanagement ‘destroyed people’

‘It was common to see entire projects handled by one person, which actually needed a team of one to three testers [in addition to the lead tester],’ one former employee said. ‘Some lead testers handled two to three projects at a time, with probably fewer than needed testers assigned to each one.’

As a natural result, this extreme pressure allegedly led to low team morale and a toxic work environment that was compounded by low pay and poor conditions. Management allegedly berated staff frequently, were inflexible with work-from-home conditions during the pandemic, and created a hostile environment that wore down employees.

The allegations detailed in the PC Gamer report are frankly shocking, and are well worth reading in full. While Quantic Lab management has yet to comment on the claims, it will likely need to deal with the fallout from this report in the coming months.

Leah J. Williams is a gaming and entertainment journalist who's spent years writing about the games industry, her love for The Sims 2 on Nintendo DS and every piece of weird history she knows. You can find her tweeting @legenette most days.