It wasn’t long ago. February was a CD project and apparently only partially popular for Witcher and Cyberpunk 2077 – I love 2077, and I stand by it. It’s a good game! – has been thoroughly hacked. The hackers had access to large parts of the internal network of the Polish development studio, and it quickly became clear that this was no small matter. CDPR turned everything off and reloaded the backups to get rid of the intruders, and as a company, you don’t do that. The server most affected was responsible for versioning and data exchange, so the ideal interface to access as much as possible.
The hacking group did that too and got the source codes for Witcher, Gwent, and Cyberpunk 2077. Also, data from the finance department of CDPR, HR, administration, and the legal department got into the wrong hands. They were encrypted as a package by the hackers and probably offered for ransom CDPR. They apparently did not agree to a deal, handed the matter over to the responsible authorities, and began to look for the backup disks.
At that time, the hackers also threatened in a text file that they left on the server that the data would be sold to the highest bidder when the 48 hours without payment were up. They also wanted to pass the records to their contacts in the gaming press via CDPR to harm CDPR. I am now relatively certain that none of my friends is a secret hacker because I have not received anything …
For that, they made at least part of the threat. Practically all source codes are now encrypted in torrents (no, this is NOT a link to torrents, but the Dark Side of Gaming) and are probably happily shared. If you want the password, you should send cryptocurrency to one of three accounts, and this income will then go to a charitable cause. Or in the words of the hackers:
“We hereby announce a charity fundraising (if you don’t believe it, you can give us a try), the reward for a donation of 10k $ is a password for one of the archives.” Thronebreaker, Witcher 3 Vanilla, Witcher NextGen, and Cyberpunk are listed, so the whole package costs $ 40,000. The next-gen SDKs are even available as “teasers” without a password.
As far as the data about CDPR and its internals are concerned, they do not want to make them directly publicly available: “CDPR data, company documents, reports and NDAs will be leaked to the media, but there will be no public leak. This leak will take place in coordination with the buyer instead, who got a discount in return “. And to top it off: “Elon Musk, Bro, please pump the Bitcoin by April 1st!”
No, I am not going to link to a torrent and have not looked for it, and neither should you, because this stuff is highly illegal, even more so than a normal pirated copy. I don’t know exactly what the law says about unauthorized distribution of stolen company data, but it’s probably not a good thing. CD-Projekt has already tried to stop tweets and other forms of link distribution since February, but with moderate success, and at first, it was “only” about the Gwent code.
There is still the question of who actually pays tens of thousands of dollars for the code. While a few features and solutions are certainly very exciting for other developers, it is not now that you can remodel Witcher and then throw it on Steam as a new game unrecognized. That should be noticed quite quickly. And to go completely on the dark side for tech inspirations … What am I saying? Of course, a few people somewhere are going to be looking closely at this code now.