The gaming community got a quick glimpse of CD Projekt Red’s highly-anticipated Cyberpunk 2077 during Microsoft’s E3 press conference, and it certainly elicited some excited responses. Barring the Blade Runner-esque setting, however, not many details were actually divulged, and the studio took it upon themselves to address that in a closed-door media session.
As opposed to The Witcher series, to date their best-known work, the upcoming open-world role-playing game (RPG) will take place mostly in first-person, a shift from the third-person point of the view from the former. It’s not an entirely first-person experience, however, for players will still be able to see their character during conversations and cutscenes.
You are V, a cyberpunk. In a world of cyberenhanced street warriors, tech-savvy netrunners and corporate life-hackers, today is your first step to becoming an urban legend. #Cyberpunk2077@maul_cosplay @maja_felicitas pic.twitter.com/PEF5FO6J4L
— Cyberpunk 2077 (@CyberpunkGame) June 12, 2018
And on the note of characterisation, Cyberpunk 2077‘s protagonist goes by V, who’s described to be “a hired gun on the rise in Night City, the most violent and dangerous metropolis of the corporate-rule future.” V’s gender, appearance, class, and historical background can all be customised to the one’s personal preference as well, which supposedly can impact “the shape of the game”, according to CD Projekt Red.
Naturally, there’s a reason behind such a mechanic. Associate design director Kyle Rowley told GameSpot that V will ultimately still be their own person, as per The Witcher‘s Geralt:
For us, having someone who’s voiced and named a character allows us to build more interesting relationships. So V in a sense does have her own personality, but you shape it as a player.
Within the world of Cyberpunk 2077, there’s room to freely explore different gameplay options that run the gamut from violence and hacking to engineering. Meanwhile, combat is set to feature familiar RPG elements, such as damage numbers popping off enemies, as well as special abilities like slowing down time. Driving in-game is also a viable option.
Where stats usually only come into effect during combat situations, they’ll instead have interesting ramifications outside of them in the game. For instance, the street cred stat grants players the ability to unlock more of the map, whereas a certain jacket may raise it by a few percentage points, allowing for access to new areas or conversations.
The move to a first-person point of view is a bold one, and gaming enthusiasts seem pretty on the fence about it, especially those who were enjoyed the third-person experience in The Witcher 3. It’s too early to tell if the change would bring about a positive or negative payoff, but introducing the option to switch between views a la Skyrim and Fallout would certainly be welcome. Still, CD Projekt Red’s track record has more than proven their prowess in game creation, so everyone should keep up the faith in them.