The Rockstar comparison is interesting because they obviously had ambitions of a similar scale, and I think part of the reason it crashed so badly Can be examplified by how Iwinski comes off as so much more drawn to the spotlight compared to the Housers who generally try to stay Behind the scenes.
Like, the wall of silence around anything internal to Rockstar is arguably what sets their escapades apart from CDPR, because I don’t think the backlash to CP2077 would be nearly as severe if the company and Iwinski hadn’t actively cultivated such a palpable air of transparancy and relatability.
They wanted the attention and the hype and fanned the flames at every single opportunity. Consider how much was put out about Cyberpunk in the past year compared to how tightly guarded most of the info was about RDR2. It never got messy, largely because Rockstar and the Housers made sure never to put enough out there for it to get messy. The closest they got was the Crunch interview, which they managed to largely get away from by closing ranks and clarifying in the press.
Rockstar, for all the fucked up shit that goes on there, are really fucking good at controlling the narrative by tightly controlling the information, and letting the hype build largely on it’s own. In contrast Iwinski and CDPR have basically been running a full on social media PR campaign for the past, what, 2 years? Interviews, twitter, influencer events, they’ve been relentlessly pumping this thing up for ages and it made controlling the narrative in the event of something going awry fucking impossible. It’s basically what happened to Saun Murray and NMS but at an astronomically higher scale.