Cyberpunk 2077 Review Copies Did Not Have Blatant Epilepsy Warnings
PC review copies of Cyberpunk 2077 did not include an epilepsy warning in its title cards, leaving questions of whether or not one will be added at all
Update: 2:54 PM EST.
CD Projekt Red has provided us with an official comment on Liana Ruppert’s comment and the inclusion of visible epilepsy warnings. CD Projekt Red is “working to introduce a separate warning splash screen in the game, so it’s more than the warning in our EULA.” The company also acknowledged that many gamers skip EULAs and that it “tried to get ahead of this by having a more digestible version of the document” which can be found here. It’s worth noting that finding this document requires going to the bottom of Cyberpunk 2077‘s site and clicking on User Agreement.
The developer also wants to avoid any other players having the same experience as Ruppert going forward. To that end, Cyberpunk 2077‘s development team is exploring a more permanent solution and “will deploy it as soon as we can.” That being said, getting updates through on consoles takes much longer than it does on PC. For PlayStation titles, a patch takes at least five days to pass through certification. That process is even longer on Xbox. With Cyberpunk 2077 shipping in just two days, it doesn’t seem like a fix will be available when players get their hands on the game.
Epilepsy warnings are commonplace for video games. Game developers want people to have fun with their games, not get hurt playing them. However, Cyberpunk 2077, which already has a segment that can cause epileptic seizures, does not feature a blatant warning. At least, that is the case in the PC review copies sent to gaming outlets so far.
Yesterday, Liana Ruppert, an associate editor at Game Informer, published an article regarding a seizure she experienced while playing Cyberpunk 2077. In the article, she warns other players that Cyberpunk 2077 has a specific scene that can easily trigger a seizure. When asked if the game had provided any seizure warnings, Ruppert said that she had likely skipped over them. However, Sam Machkovech, the tech culture editor at Ars Technica confirmed that the copies of Cyberpunk 2077 sent out for review did not provide a seizure warning in its title cards. Instead, the game’s sole warning is in its lengthy EULA, that long list of legalese that you probably skip over when launching a new game. The chances of players seeing this warning without deliberately looking for it are slim to none.
to clarify: CP77 doesn’t have epilepsy warnings in its title cards yet, at least not on the PC build given to members of the press over the past week. we’ll have to wait for details on leaked retail console versions to see if it’s the same on XB1/PS4.
— Sam Machkovech ☂ vacay til 12/14 (@samred) December 8, 2020
The issue has sparked a new controversy surrounding CD Projekt Red’s latest title. Calls to add a proper warning to the game or add options that could remove seizure-causing scenes are coming from more than just Twitter users. In response to the Game Informer article, a UK based epilepsy charity, Epilepsy Action, has asked CD Projekt Red to update Cyberpunk 2077 immediately.
“We are alarmed and saddened that a game reviewer had a seizure triggered by Cyberpunk 2077, before it was even launched,” said Epilepsy Action director of external affairs Louise Cousins. “The game features rapidly blinking lights and other animations that could cause seizures in people with photosensitive epilepsy.” Cousins’ statement ends with a firm recommendation that CD Projekt Red updates the game to make it safer, saying “A disclaimer warning at the beginning isn’t enough.”
DualShockers has reached out to CD Projekt Red for a comment.
Cyberpunk 2077 is set to launch on December 10 for PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X.