Cyberpunk 2077’s closing out Microsoft’s E3 2018 showcase amounts to a big win for developer CD Projekt RED. The forthcoming sci-fi RPG remains the talk of the town, and now new details are surfacing. At a behind closed doors demo, 50 minutes of gameplay were shown off to press outlets. The nearly one-hour demonstration, which won’t receive a public release anytime soon, continues to garner praise.
Perhaps the biggest news centers around the manner in which players will experience the game. Cyberpunk 2077 is a first-person RPG, a stark contrast to CD Projekt’s typical offerings. Thus far, if Twitter threads and social media commentary are anything to go by, this news is divisive amongst fans. Apparently, the first-person perspective represents the end of the line for some. Despite the studio’s track record and Cyberpunk’s compelling setting, the response to this particular detail is middling at best. However, the developers are promising that everything has purpose. The most immersive experience is only achievable through first-person.
Much of the concern seems to stem from other details regarding the title, such as the customization options. Unlike The Witcher, players create their character. The preset character name is V, but players decide whether V is male or female. From there, a backstory is chosen, which determines how NPCs that populate the game-world will respond to V. Additional customization options include clothing. Not to worry, though, the character isn’t always locked in first-person mode. Cutscenes and instances of driving (cars and motorcycles) are presented in third-person, ensuring players spend a good chunk of time seeing the V they craft.
Customization options aren’t merely cosmetic either. Depending on V’s clothing, some NPCs may be more accepting than others. CD Projekt RED refers to this as “street cred,” which allows the player access to certain areas. Street cred also increases through quest completion.
Of course, the density of the world doesn’t stop there. The citizens of Night City act as more than window dressing; they’ll also be a source of quest retrieval and conversations. Similar to the Witcher series, choice in this regard and others is paramount. Each decision bears consequences both grand and granular to the overarching narrative.
The start of Cyberpunk 2077 tasks players with choosing stats: Intelligence, Constitution, Strength, Tech, Reflexes, and Cool. These stats, inspired by the tabletop RPG, don’t force players to commit to a class. Rather, class evolves as the game progresses.
For combat, a variety of weapons, including guns, are at the player’s disposal. Enemy names, health bars, and levels are visible on-screen. Other interesting bits of detail consist of the following: there’s a bullet-time feature, inhalers acts as healers, AI steers the vehicle to allow for combat while driving, hacking is an upgradable skill, but the corresponding barriers are accessible through other means like the engineering skill.
It’s a lot to take in, especially since there is still so much CD Projekt has yet to unveil. The story and specific character details remain under wraps. Until its release, which also continues to mystify, Cyberpunk 2077 is the gift that keeps on giving.