Cyberpunk 2077 remains as one of the most anticipated games in recent times. The game deserves this popularity, given it’s being developed by critically-acclaimed developers CD Projekt Red. Yes, the same team who’s done amazing work on The Witcher Trilogy – a beautiful, masterfully-created open world fantasy RPG.
So when fans heard that CD Projekt Red was working on a new game, it didn’t take too long for Cyberpunk 2077 to gain a considerable following, anticipating its release.
However, it’s been quite a long time since the first Cyberpunk 2077 teaser trailer back in 2013. It’s been six (6) years. Now that Cyberpunk 2077 has released a number of trailers and teasers (including one with Keanu Reeves in it), and is nearing its release in April 16, 2020, what can we expect from this massively hyped up game?
Cyberpunk 2077: Sci-Fi Offerings (So Far)
The Visuals: Sci-Fi, Cyberpunk is on point
This a no-brainer coming from the makers of The Witcher Trilogy, but the visuals are fantastic. As expected, they delivered on amazing graphics that befit developers of their caliber.
Interestingly, environments are also partially destructible. This element adds more impact to fight sequences, since you can see the damage you leave in the aftermath. If this is only the unpolished product, we look forward to the official work.
The graphics are beautiful, but all the more so would be its aesthetics. CD Projekt Red managed to create a feeling of aesthetic cohesion in the design of the characters, environments, objects, and the UI. Moreover, the neon lights, cybernetic implants, and POV holograms definitely help deliver that cyberpunk atmosphere and feel.
We take particular emphasis in the game’s ability to generate a feel of actually being in a cyberpunk world. This is important as this is the mechanism through which the developers immerse us and envelope us into this world that they create. And speaking of the setting…
The Setting: Paradise, not-so-Paradise
Cyberpunk 2077 is set, as the name suggests, in a futuristic, dystopian world. It is the year 2077 and Night City, a fictional city in the USA, is bustling with corporate and street thugs alike.
Within Night City you have six (6) districts to explore. Players also have the opportunity to explore the “badlands” outside Night City.
And what’s an open-world game without vehicles? Cyberpunk 2077 features a wide array of vehicles to help navigate the sprawling city. Cars and bikes even have built-in radio. Players can listen to futuristic music, take in futuristic sights, and feel like they’re in a future funk AMV.
The Gameplay: Immersive, intense first-person action
Roleplaying plays (no pun intended) a huge focus in Cyberpunk 2077‘s gameplay. “Why of course it would, it’s an RPG,” you might be thinking. However, the game takes the roleplay element further than your run-of-the-mill modern RPG.
If the Tokyo Game Show 2019 gameplay demo would be the basis, it seems the game tailors its gameplay depending on your personalized character.
On Narrative: Who Are You?
For instance, your playstyle can actually affect the quests and the story you’ll encounter in Cyberpunk 2077. No modern RPG is complete without character customization, but this game needs you to include a backstory as well. And while this form of customization is present in a ton of modern games, backstories rarely matter there.
This time, Cyberpunk 2077 uses your backstory to change your roleplay experience. CD Projekt Red made sure your backstory shapes the way you interact with other characters in the game. Some backstory options can open up dialogue lines specific to certain people. The most recent game I’ve personally played that utilized this same mechanic is Divinity: Original Sin II. It’s interesting to see what CD Projekt Red’s play on this will be.
Stats and abilities also matter in dialogue choices. If you’re a hacker, you’re more knowledgeable with computers. This opens up dialogue related to tech. This is a gameplay element similar to what highly regarded RPG, Fallout: New Vegas, utilized in their dialogue choices.
On Playstyle: Show Me Your Moves
Another way of tailoring your gameplay in terms of your character is how you navigate areas. In the TGS 2019 demo, they showed us two playstyles: Netrunner and Strong Solo.
- The Netrunner is a hacker type character. They utilize wit, stealth, and hacking abilities to navigate dungeons.
- The Strong Solo on the other hand utilizes their brute strength to plow through a dungeon.
The TGS 2019 demo they showed how you can take totally different routes depending on which playstyle you gravitate to. The Netrunner can disable a camera that’s surveying the area you want to pass through. Meanwhile the Strong Solo can just bust open a door that leads to a low-surveillance area.
The Netrunner and Strong Solo also utilize different combat tactics. Netrunners use hacking in their fights. This would include hacking objects in the environment, such as turrets, to your advantage. Instead of pointing its guns at you, it would target enemies. Hacking enemies directly debilitates them. This would result in “debuffs” to the hacked enemy. Hacking could even cause the enemy’s cybernetics to turn on them or straight up explode!
Strong Solos on the other hand take things head on.
Stand in front of a Strong Solo and expect to be punched, stabbed, gunned down, and be Terminator‘d to hell and back. Remember the turret the Netrunner hacked? Strong Solos will break it with their barehands. Further, they’ll use it like a heavy machine gun and hasta la vista the living daylights out of you.
While we describe these playstyles as dichotomous extremes, it is possible to mix and match too! The futuristic dystopian world is your cybernetic oyster!
Cyberpunk 2077: Looking Forward to the Future
Needless to say, once we saw the demo of the game, it made us considerably excited. We were excited to explore the possibilities this game had to offer.
If they can fully flesh out the gameplay and sustain it for the entirety of the game, this has potential to be a game you can play over and over. The level of personalization can provide players a different experience with each new playthrough.
Can CD Projekt Red fulfill the promises shown in the trailers, teasers, and demos? Only time will tell. But one thing is for sure. We are rooting for CD Projekt Red to make this a success.