Developer: CD Projekt Red
Publisher: CD Projekt
Director: Adam Badowski
Engine: REDengine 4
- Microsoft Windows
- PlayStation 4
- PlayStation 5
- Xbox One
- Xbox Series X/S
Genre: Action role-playing, first-person shooter
Mode: Single-player, multiplayer
The game is developed by CD Projekt Red in close partnership with Mike Pondsmith, author of the original pen-and-paper roleplaying system on which the title is based. In conjunction with digital distribution platform GOG.com, the Warsaw-based developer belongs to CD Projekt SA, a now publicly listed company Marcin Iwiński and Michał Kiciński originally start back in May 1994. The studio establishes itself through the adaptation of The Witcher, Andrzej Sapkowski’s popular fantasy novels and short stories, in a game series that hit the 50 million sales mark this year. The latest entry in the franchise, The Witcher 3, launches in May 2015 and ends up winning more than 800 awards and accolades, including Game of the Year from IGN, GameSpot and Game Informer. Its Metacritic Metascore currently sits at 93/100 and the user score has reached the notable 9.4/10.
Following his interest in the subgenre pioneered by Ridley Scott in Blade Runner, Mike Pondsmith joins forces with a host of authors to develop a comprehensive tabletop RPG in the same vein, complete with rich lore and detailed ruleset. He originally launches Cyberpunk in 1988 through his own company, R. Talsorian Games, dubbing the IP “The Roleplaying Game of the Dark Future”. He goes on to publish several revisions and expansions, including Cyberpunk 2020 and Cyberpunk V3.0. The fourth and latest, Cyberpunk RED, is set in 2045 and serves as a prequel to the events featured in Cyberpunk 2077. Both the jumpstart kit and the full edition of RED are out now.
Visit CD Projekt Red [↑] Visit R. Talsorian Games [↑]
Watch 2012 Cyberpunk 2077 Original Announcement [↑] Watch 2013 Cyberpunk 2077 Teaser trailer [↑] Watch Mike Pondsmith about Cyberpunk World feature [↑]
As the name implies, the game is set in the year 2077 and located in Night City, one in a handful of fictional megacities, more precisely, an international free and independent city-state, an enclave in the Free State of Northern California, or NORCAL, itself an autonomous zone within the New United States since 2016. It's able to declare federal laws null and even issue legislation of its own.
Night City can be found in the southern part of NORCAL, occupying the head of Del Coranado Bay, the equivalent of real-life Morro Bay, between San Francisco and Santa Barbara, facing the Pacific Ocean to the west. Further to the south lies the border with neighbouring Free State of Southern California. Winner of the dubious accolade “the worst place to live in America”, the metropolis is nevertheless home to almost 7 million inhabitants. Richard Night, then a young visionary and construction businessman, founds it in 1994. Referencing its location, the original name was Coronado city, but the city was renamed to pay homage to the founder.
From the very inception, Night City’s fate is closely tied to the megacorporations battling it out for supremacy. Its silhouette certainly bears witness to their influence, with its towering skyscrapers, alongside trademark self-sufficient residential megabuildings. But within the estimated 24 square kilometres of the map and its six multi-layered districts, the city and its surroundings offer a wide variety of styles, subcultures and tech-infused landscapes.
Watch Postcards from Night City feature [↑] Visit Night City Love official site [↑] Look up real-life Morro bay on Google Maps [↑]
Naturally, the full plot of the game is still under wraps. But multiple sources and official promo materials suggest the premise is that Arasaka has managed to store Johnny Silverhand’s conscience, his Engram, inside an old prototype piece of biotech called Immortality Chip, or The Relic. The player chooses one of three lifepaths, each placing them at a different starting location on the map and unfolding in completely different ways. But even though each is said to have significant ramifications further down the line, all three converge in a single narrative branch during the prologue.
As such, V and Jackie then prove themselves to fixer Dexter Deshawn, first by meeting with Meredith Stout, Senior Operations Manager for Militech and then recovering the corporations stolen spiderbot from a Maelstrom gang group led by Royce, as showcased in the 2018 48-minute gameplay demo. Later, in a meeting that involves netrrunner T-Bug as well, Dexter entrusts the duo with the task to steal the Immortality Chip from Arasaka. They succeed but because the sealed container malfunctions, V is forced to plug the biochip in, before being double-crossed by Dexter. The fixer leaves V out to die in a dumpster. When V regains conscience, Johnny Silverhand inhabits it and V is stuck with the autonomous, sometimes antagonistic outspoken character, who’s on a revenge mission against Arasaka.
Somewhere along the plot, V goes to Pacifica and encounters Maman Brigitte, leader of the local group of netrunners and Placede, her second-in-command. Sasquatch, leader of a violent rival gang , complicates life for V. Little else is known about the story and plot, aside from extensive if credible speculation.
Watch Official E3 2018 Trailer [↑] Watch Official E3 2019 Cinematic Trailer [↑] Watch 2019 Deep Dive gameplay demo [↑] Watch The Gig trailer [↑] Watch 2077 in Style feature [↑] Watch The Dinner Cinematic Trailer [↑]Watch Johnny Silverhand trailer [↑] Watch official Gameplay Trailer [↑]
The geopolitics of Mike Pondsmith’s fictional world diverge significantly from our own and the split begins in 1989, when the four federal intelligence agencies, NSA, CIA, FBI and DEA, assemble in a secret collective known as The Gang of Four. Their goal is to effectively run the United States, formally still a constitutional republic with an elected president. On the other side of the now extinguishing Cold War, the Soviet Union does not collapse like it did in real-life in 1991. Instead it lives on, as in the previous year General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev appoints a successor to carry out a more in-depth program of reforms. Up until 1994, the new leader transitions the nation into a federation of sovereign country-like republics glued together by a free trade zone formally known as the Union of Sovereign Soviet Republics, thus managing to retain the old USSR acronym.
But the fundamental differences with our own timeline do not stop there. The European Economic Community, EEC, which in reality was formed back in 1957, begins its fictional existence in 1992. The project unites the mostly democratic countries of the whole of Western Europe in one block under one common currency, the Eurodollar, which quickly begins to spread its influence beyond the borders of the old Continent and helps the EEC to assert itself as the global rising economic power. Accordingly, one peculiarity of this alternate version of history is that the Eurodollar is adopted by Japan, which at the time boasts the world’s most powerful corporation, Tokyo-based Arasaka, a firm specializing in security, banking and manufacturing. Alongside, EEC’s prosperity allows it to send aid to the new struggling USSR states, a gesture met with opposition by the US government and one that eventually leads to the breakup of Euro-American military alliance NATO. Another important consequence is that the USSR too adopts the Eurodollar over the US currency, further cementing EEC’s global influence.
In Cyberpunk, megacorporations cannot be described as mere goods and services providers. They usually are transnational entities which wield government-like power, have government-like agendas and often attempt to advance them though whatever means necessary, including bribery, extorsion and assassination, a repertoire that applies both to their recurrent internal power struggles as well as to their dealings with governments and competitors. This generally translates into a steady diet of armed conflicts known as Corporate Wars, waged on land, sea, air, space and cyberspace.
The designation “boostergangs” denotes the most common type of gang: those whose members use cyberware. There is a relationship between boostergangs and violence, since as the number of implants goes up so does the risk of cyberpsychosis. Some go overboard and do lose their humanity.
Watch Gangs of Night City trailer [↑]
The first step in tailoring the player's character is to decide its appearance. Players will be able to see their character in a select few cutscenes, special mirrors and in photo mode. Character customization offers several presets and a randomize option to stick with or start from and then fine-tune. Among others, players can determine: Skin tone and skin type; Hairstyle and hair colour; Eyes and eye colour; Ears; Beard, beard style, and beard colour; Cyberware; Facial scars; Facial tattoos; Piercings and piercing colour; Teeth; Eye makeup and eye makeup colour. Featured are also sliders for the Penis size, Breast size, Vagina type; and Buttocks. Player’s choice between voices sets what gender their character is, and, apparently, the choice of genitalia translates into what NPCs can be romanced.
After character creation, the player is given a choice of three distinct lifepaths, or backstories, which determine how the intro unfolds, right from the starting position on the map. The first, Street Kid, has V beginning in the Heywood district and getting hired to carjack a luxury model for Kirk, a fixer. Night City Police Department agents abruptly put an end to the plan. The second lifepath, Nomad, puts V wandering through an unremarkable small town in the Badlands, where he first gets into trouble with the local sheriff and then with corporate agents, as he tries to cross the border into Night City. The last lifepath, Corporate, drops V at the heart of Arasaka tower, in the role of an intelligence officer working for Jenkins, a top executive trying to stage a coup. V is left to face the consequences of the ill-fated attempt.
Each lifepath determines how V hooks up with and eventually befriends fellow mercenary Jackie Welles, a former Valentino gang member who decides to become a free-lancer to appease his mother. As a Street Kid, protagonist V runs into Welles during the carjacking attempt. Nomad V meets Jackie during a job in the Badlands and, finally, V as a corporate agent is already friends with Welles.
Stats, Attributes, Skills and Perks
The player character has classic RPG stats like armour, health, and stamina, among others. Whereas your clothing, which also bears stats, determines Armour, the rest result from the interaction of RPG layers: Attributes - core elements which affect basic stats - open into Skills - more specialized elements affecting gameplay - which themselves open into Perks, highly specialized passive buffs or active abilities. In short, 5 attributes open to 12 skills which branch off into more than 240 perks. All of these are organized in a hierarchy: the points you invest into each Attribute determine how many you can spend in the respective skills and perks.
Watch 2018 Official 48-minute gameplay demo [↑] Watch 2019 Deep Dive gameplay demo [↑] Watch Lifepaths feature [↑] Watch Cyberpunk in Style feature [↑] Watch Rides of the Dark Future feature [↑]
ON THE ACCURACY OF THE INFORMATION HEREIN:
As we embark on this journey and discover more and more about the game together, corrections, erratas and clarifications by fellow GAF users are not only welcome - they are essential. Information posted here will be added to the OT as time goes by.
ON CD PROJEKT RED AND CONCERNS OVER DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION:
See a summary of the state of LGBTQ+ rights in Poland [↑] Read an interview with Adam Kiciński and Adam Badowski from CD Projekt on Diversity and Inclusion [↑] How you can support LGBTQ+ rights in Europe [↑]
This OT was created for the appreciation and discussion of the piece of electronic entertainment known as "Cyberpunk 2077". All those who love, are hyped for and who simply want to shoot the breeze about this game are encouraged to join. LGBTQ+, BIPOC, those with special needs (we will add information on adaptive controller compatibility ASAP) and others, you are welcome and valued. We will try to keep this OT focused on the game. For spoiler-related discussions, please refer to the Spoiler thread. For those who want to discuss the media reception of the game, we point you towards the Review thread. We leave you with the words of the head of the CD PROJEKT RED studio.
It's time to jack in.