After 8 years of development, Cyberpunk 2077 is finally here. It has been a long and difficult road for CD Projekt Red, with the game facing numerous delays along the way.
But that isn’t the end of the road for the Polish development team, as they plan to support the game through to the end of 2022 with both free and paid DLC, as well as next gen ports and a multiplayer mode.
But was Cyberpunk 2077 worth the long wait?
Rough Around The Edges
As with many large RPG games, it hasn’t shipped in the best state. In fact, it is very rough around the edges, and that is after the day one patch.
Prior to the day one patch many reviewers were complaining about non-stop glitches and issues with the game. Thankfully a lot of them have been fixed by the time we got our hands on the game. However, some issues still remain, but so far just graphically and nothing that would break the game in any way.
Early on in the game as a Street Kid you have an interaction with some police officers. During this sequence a police car clipped through a wall before disappearing and then moving into the scene from the opposite of the screen. Not a big issue, it was more funny than anything but definitely a standout graphical issue that I’ve noticed so far while playing the game.
Any other graphical issues have largely just been superficial and general nit picks. Due to the game being really demanding I am only playing it on PC on medium settings with no ray tracing or DLSS, so sometimes I put it down to the graphic settings being low rather than an issue in the game. An example of this would be the fabric on the roof of the inside of a car looking a little fuzzy, this is likely shadows, but due to my low graphic settings they look odd. So it is hard to mark the score down because my PC may not be up to scratch.
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Putting all that aside and focusing on the beauty of the game and the score given is completely justified. This may be 2020’s Crysis, it is absolutely stunning to look at (when using a high graphic setting) and really pushes PCs to the limit.
The game takes full advantage of ray tracing and DLSS, which in a futuristic city full of life, looks incredible and has set a new benchmark on how games should look in the next generation.
As we are only a couple of days into the launch of the game, it is rough around the edges, but I have no doubt that it will age like fine wine as it is patched and worked on further. After all, The Witcher 3 had many issues at launch before it became the masterpiece we know it as today.
The Witcher 2077
When it comes to the gameplay, it will be very familiar to players. CD Projekt Red created a winning formula with The Witcher 3 and there is little reason to deviate away from that.
The game plays just as you’d expect, a futuristic The Witcher game, with a city full of life and a strong emphasis on great story telling. All of the usual RPG elements are present too from crafting, to an abundance of side quests, to sex scenes, it is all here.
Cyberpunk 2077 plays very smooth too for the most part. The vehicle movement is a bit janky and definitely not a highlight of the game. When it comes to combat it plays like a pretty good first person shooter game and also features many new mechanics such as Braindances.
Braindances are quite a confusing thing to explain. Players essentially watch a scene that has already played out and can see it play out from a NPCs point of views, or by freely moving around the scene taking note of visual, audio, and thermal clues to piece things together. Its one of those things that you’d have to play to truly understand to be honest.
There are a large variety of weapons and clothing options with most either being bought or looted from the corpses of your enemies. These can also be upgraded using the Crafting mechanic, very similar to other RPG games.
And speaking of familiarity, the Skill Tree once again makes a return, trading Skill Points for perks to improve your character from better stats to being able to do certain tasks and use certain weapons. Skill Trees are very common in adventure and RPG games so they don’t need explaining too much.
A Whole New World
Cyberpunk 2077 is the first IP that CD Projekt Red has created outside of The Witcher. Over the years The Witcher has developed a very deep and rich lore, backed up by various games, books, and a TV show. However, The Witcher games are actually an adaptation of an existing book series.
CD Projekt Red have continued building lore with Cyberpunk 2077 by also releasing a comic book, as well digital comic books and source book that players can download after purchasing the game. This helps flesh out the world even further and shows that this likely isn’t the last time that players will be seeing this universe.
Cyberpunk 2077 Replayability
Cyberpunk 2077 features 3 different Lifepaths, these are essentially different scenarios with each playing out different.
The Lifepaths are Nomad, Street Kid and Corpo. Your choice of Lifepath only really affects the beginning of the game and will eventually play out fairly similar to the rest as time goes on.
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Nomad has a very Mad Max vibe to it, with players starting out in the Badlands instead of Night City. Street Kid is more gang orientated, while Corpo sees your character V start as an employee of Arasaka Corporations.
Character customization is a very strong point in the game too, with players being able to shape their character exactly how they want. There are dozens of options for everything from hair style, to colour, to tattoos, and even breast and penis size. CD Projekt Red also decided to not let your character be dictated as being male or female and have allowed players to create their own trans character, one of the first times this has been done in a video game.
All of this combined helps give the game a lot of replayability, not that the game needs it as it will take players around 100 hours to do a completionist run. That also isn’t including the numerous ending options that players can get, with choices made throughout the game affecting the outcome.
Cyberpunk 2077 is definitely the sort of the game that certain players will be able to sink hundreds, if not thousands of hours, into.
Is It Worth Buying Now, Despite Being Broken?
This is question many people are asking right now, should I buy Cyberpunk 2077? And it is a tough one to answer.
There has been many reports that the console version of the game is extremely broken right now. Over time this will be fixed, but that doesn’t help players right now.
On PC though the game seems solid enough, apart from a few graphical nit picks. So far I have experienced no crashes or anything game breaking on the PC version, so I would recommend it on PC.
For console players though, perhaps hold off a little bit and see if any of these issues get fixed. But for players that can’t wait to jump into Night City, do it. It is a very fun experience backed up by fantastic story telling.
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