Loading screens have continued to plague gamers since their inception. Many gamers utilize the time to check their phone, snag a bite of food, or – for the extra ambitious – make a quick dash to the rest room, before the game gets started.
While many games have tried to reduce, or even hide in-game loading screens, it appears that the team behind Cyberpunk 2077 is actually touting the removal of loading screens entirely.
According to CD Projekt Red’s Associate Design Director, Kyle Rowley, Cyberpunk 2077 will not contain any loading screens.
The news came from a chat session within Cyberpunk 2077’s official Discord server. When asked if there would be any loading screens as players venture from one area to another, Rowley simply replied, “No loading screens after the initial load into the game.”
Historically, loading screens have contained images of in-game content, such as special items, as well as tips and tricks and level design art. Mini-games have also been used as a fun, interactive way to spend the time while waiting for games to load. The inclusion of mini-games during loading waits was originally patented by Namco in 1995, but expired in 2015, allowing developers to be a little more creative in how they present loading screens.
These days, many games attempt to mask loading screens through a variety of different tactics, such as riding in an elevator, venturing through a confined tunnel or hall at a slower speed, fighting off wave after wave of enemies, and unskippable cutscenes. While it may appear to players that they are still playing the game, they are, in fact, smack dab in the middle of an in-game loading process.
It remains to be heard or seen exactly how Cyberpunk 2077 will get around the incorporation of loading screens. Continuous, uninterrupted game play has always been a desire for gamers, which has ultimately become a consideration for developers as they create games, doing what they can to hide blatant loading screens.
Rowley’s declaration is an ambitious one. It seems like a pretty tall order to fully remove loading screens from a game. Hopes are certainly high that Cyberpunk 2077 follows through on its statement, but it is probably best to temper expectations for the time being.