Up For Debate - Who does it best? Rockstar? Or CD Projekt Red?

Written by Chad Norton on Sat, Dec 26, 2020 5:00 PM
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We love video games, and we especially love great video games. Arguably the two top dogs of single player video games at the moment are Rockstar and CD Projekt Red. Putting all past notions of controversy surrounding Cyberpunk 2077’s launch behind us, we thought it would be interesting to compare the two and see who did what best…

In many ways, Rockstar Games and CDPR are very similar: both companies generally like to take their time making games; both studios share the same passion of putting an immense amount of quality into their work; and both of them have been heavily criticized about crunch culture. Not to mention that they have some of the most highly regarded, critically acclaimed, and best selling games of all time under their belts.

Arguably Rockstar has a much deeper background and more experience with their games - even if they are technically a younger studio than CDPR - thanks to their multitude of various studios across the globe. Owned by Take-Two Interactive, they have lots more money and assets to throw at their games.

CD Projekt Red on the other hand is mostly funded by investors, which can lead to some awkward situations resulting in multiple class action lawsuits, but that’s not the point here.

Listing out all of the games that Rockstar has made would take quite a while and may even require a calculator, whereas you can count all the games that CDPR have ever made on one hand (okay, fine, 1 and a half if you count their spinoffs). But their four highest grossing games are: Grand Theft Auto VRed Dead Redemption 2The Witcher 3, and Cyberpunk 2077.

But which one is the best out of both studios? You could say that GTA 5 is the best considering it is the second best-selling video game of all time (right behind Minecraft) at 135 million total sales. But both Red Dead Redemption 2 and The Witcher 3 are highly regarded as some of the greatest games of all time, almost always making it to the top of someone's list.

For reference, Red Dead Redemption 2 has sold a total of 34 million units, and The Witcher 3 sold 28 million. Cyberpunk 2077 on the other hand has only just released, but is already the biggest PC launch of all time, and has so far sold over 13 million copies in just 2 weeks.

So, both companies share similar properties and values, but which one did it better? Which studio has the best writing team? Which studio crafts the better open worlds? And what is the best game out of all of them? Is it Grand Theft Auto V? Or Cyberpunk 2077? Red Dead Redemption 2? Or The Witcher 3? Let’s debate!

Who is better at storytelling?

Who is better at open worlds?

What is the all time best game out of both studios?

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22:03 Dec-28-2020

well, I'm disappointed with both RDR2 and Cyberpunk, so it's tough draw in 2020..

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11:16 Dec-29-2020

RDR2 disappointing? Im currently playing it, seems to be damn good

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14:06 Dec-30-2020

I played it kind of storyline rush, so I quickly reached break points after which certain game mechanics make no sense anymore,
one of the problems is, missions are pre-scripted and cannot be played differently, which kills any replay-ability for me,
on the other hand some friends really enjoyed the free roaming stuff as well, but agreed storyline was rather mediocre,
RDR2 is by no means a bad game, but I expected way more for what reviews say...

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00:00 Dec-28-2020

rockstar had better open world mechanic. well, consider cyberpunk released while the game isn't finished yet, no wonder the AI feels weird, and tons of hints here and there that proof the game is not ready to be released. it's a good game but need polish. cough

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11:59 Dec-29-2020

I see what you did there.

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22:36 Dec-27-2020

Just started a new GTA V save today after finishing Cyberpunk yesterday, and while I love Cyberpunk for what it is, I just got reminded how much fun the world in GTA is. So many more possibilities, more stuff to do and in my opinion better missions.

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12:17 Dec-27-2020

GTA SAN ANDREAS WILL ALWAYS BE THE GOLD STANDARD FOR GAMES, PEOPLE STILL BEGGING FOR A 4K REMASTER, SHOCKING YALL HAVEN'T ADD IT TO THE POLL.

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04:16 Dec-27-2020

GTA V- great characters but the story was absolute garbage. Gta IV had the best story of them all. Rdr2 I can't say cause I've not played. As for CDPR, except for W3, all other openworlds are very average but all the story are amazing.

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23:28 Dec-26-2020

I don't think that they are even in the same league to be honest. I like cdpr games, especially witcher. But it cannot even compare to something like RDR2. Cyberpunk feels like 10 years behind in game development.

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20:36 Dec-26-2020

Ive seen videos with comparison of both GTA and CP2077 side by side. The level of detail is astonishing and that is comparing to a game released just recently. Tires going flat from shooting it, pedestrians reacting to you more realistically, cars moving out of the way if you are standing in front, proper water physics when shooting a gun or throwing a grenade at the water, Cops attempting to chase you with better pathing etc. Alot of it has to do with better AI integration.

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20:32 Dec-26-2020

I prefer Red Dead Redemption and Grand Theft Auto IV to the games on this list.

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19:07 Dec-26-2020

Rockstar's RDR2 has better pacing in it's storytelling throughout the game, CDPR's W3 feels like it hits the literal brick walls of Novigrad when you get there but does thankfully recover once you headl to Skellig. CDPR have had the benefit of creating stories in fantasy & sci-fi worlds and so can create more unique situations and characters to tell their stories and may have the upper hand there

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18:56 Dec-26-2020

Overall, I would say Rrockstar is definitely better in consistency of doing well. Witcher 3 was what propels CDPR above, but versus CP2077, Rockstar does open world, cities, driving, pedestrian and driving AI,... far better. Sure storytelling is on some quests better on CDPRs stuff, but in my opinion, what CDPR tried to do with CP2077 Rockstar just does far better.

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18:58 Dec-26-2020

But do note that by all means I don't mean CP2077 is bad game, since it sometimes feels like internet deals too much with absolute, either it is great or it is bad,CP2077 is good game and enjoyable. It just isn't as great as Witcher 3 was even beyond bugs getting fixed. And GTA did some stuff better even years before CP2077 ramped up development after W3. Shame they didn't copy some of good stuff.

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18:36 Dec-26-2020

One side you have rockstar aka microtransactions and on the other hype train derail gone bad. Yeah pretty sure neither are your friends and just a business.

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18:47 Dec-26-2020

CDPR are developing a microtransaction filled multiplayer version of CP2077 which is obviously taking it's queues from RDR2 Online & GTA Online so there isn't any difference there either.

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21:20 Dec-26-2020

Remember when CDPR promised no crunch and then crunched(rockstars no better) for like 6+months. Both companies are quite the champions of the people.

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18:04 Dec-26-2020

just completed CP2077, i can say RDR2 storytelling is a masterpiece for me also the open world is more alive!

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17:58 Dec-26-2020

Who has more money and employees? Rockstar of course
This question is useless

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17:18 Dec-26-2020

Man Rockstar goes to the crap list for me just for the scummy gta/red dead online business practices and for their enormously dumb customer support.They make better open worlds and slightly better optimization but that's about it.CDPR rules.

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17:15 Dec-26-2020

In my opinion, RDR2 beats Witcher 3, objectively. It's just got so much more detail. I love both, but people need to relax a bit with W3 being the king. Not anymore.

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17:38 Dec-26-2020

That first sentence seems a bit contradictory. I care above all else about the narrative of a game, so the The Witcher 3 is the better game for me, where I feel RDR2 had a couple too many chapters. That being said the story of The Witcher would be much less enjoyable without the atmosphere of it's world.

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17:41 Dec-26-2020

Rockstar on the other hand, with RDR2 specifically, take advantage of the fact that it is open world. Exploration actually means something and you don't feel compelled to go from marker to marker with the world merely as a backdrop. So it easily wins in that category in my opinion.

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20:28 Dec-26-2020

I've looked at both objectively, without choosing one or another for a single aspect or several or because I have affinity for one dev or another, but as a whole package. It doesn't imply being a fact for others, hence, in my opinion

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13:17 Dec-27-2020

If you're referring to the better 'made' game, then yeah objectivity is possible. Subjectivity is unavoidable when talking about it in any other way though.

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