It has been months since E3 2018 and fans were dying to see the gameplay demo, which was shown exclusively for the media and a number of chosen gamers and content creators. Based on the incredibly good impression from both media and content creators, the “thirst” for Cyberpunk 2077 gameplay reveal raised even higher. Fortunately, CD Projekt Red (CDPR) finally decided to show the whole world what they have in store. A 48-minute gameplay demo was released and so far, it was truly 48 minutes of awesomeness. So, what news featured in Cyberpunk 2077 for real? Let’s find out!
1. Character Customization, why not?
Unlike the renown The Witcher 3, in Cyberpunk 2077 players get to create their own character, rather than playing a pre-defined protagonist. At the start of the demo, we are immediately introduced with a character customization menu. Here we can customize various aspects, including background story, appearance, and stats. And right off the bat, you will see full-nudity character models with censorship. But according to CDPR, this censorship was used for the sake of showing demo only. It is highly possible that the censorship will be removed in the full game (yes, that means 100% nudity).
In the Background Check tab, players get to see character’s background information in the left, including information such as name, date of birth, prior convictions, education, and details in brief. At the bottom of the background sheet, there is a button called Edit Details, which highly hints that players will get to customize these infos to their likings.
Looking at the right side, we can see 3 different categories: Childhood hero, Key life event, and reason why Night City
- Childhood hero: Includes 3 prominent figures who also appeared in Cyberpunk 2020: Johnny Silverhand the Samurai Rockerboy, Morgan Blackhand the Solo of Fortune, and Saburo Arakasa the Corporate God. According to Cyberpunk 2020, Johnny Silverhand represents the “rebellious force” fighting against the corps and society injustice, Sabura Arakasa is the CEO of Arakasa Corporation and also the most powerful man in the world, while Morgan Blackhand the famous Solo is more like a neutral guy.
- Key life event: Includes 3 choices: Death of siblings, Ran away from home, and First big kill.
- Why Night City: Includes 3 choices: Unfinished Business, Ex-lover in town, Something to Prove
For now it’s unclear how these choices will affect the story. But it is expected to change how the NPCs and main protagonist interact, and possibly how the story will progress.
In case of character’s name, our main character will always have the alias as “V”. And as we can see from the demo, NPCs will always call the player as such. The reason for this is that: in the original Cyberpunk 2020 table-top game, people call each other by alias for identity safety purpose. That is actually understandable since in such a lawless world, who knows what will happen to us if our real identity is exposed?
Biometric Scan and Appearance
After choosing the background, the demo moves on to appearance customization, including Biometric Scan tab which features facial customization, then we have Apperance tab which allows players changing from Style, Clothes, Makeup, and Piercings. The demo does not go into details how these customizations. From our perspective, the customization feels kind of… pale. Each customization option, like Eyes, only includes 10 choices. There is no sign of sliders either, like eye width, eye height, etc… That said, the developer did remind that this is all demo and things can (and will) be changed, including character customization.
This is where players get to allocate their stat points, just like in many other RPGs. Here we see 6 confirmed main stats: Strength, Constitution, Intelligence, Reflexes, Tech, and Cool. According to Cyberpunk 2020 table-top game, here’s the effect of each stat:
- Strength: Determines character’s physical prowess and melee damage. The more Strength V has, the heavier lifting V can do and break much tougher stuffs.
- Constitution: Determines character’s health and endurance in combat, like health regeneration.
- Intelligence: Determines characters’ problem solving skill and getting information.
- Reflexes: Determines characters’ agility and other skills like running, driving, and combat techniques.
- Tech: Determines characters’ ability to use different items like weapons or gadgets.
- Cool: Determines characters’ resistance against fear, stress, physical pain, or torture. It also seems to relate to characters’ charisma.
After allocating all the points, players can choose Confirm to start the game, or, Edit additional details which is unfortunately not revealed yet.
2. Night City is freaking huge!
We have heard before that Night City would be huge. But we had no idea how exactly “huge” it would be until the recent gameplay demo. After the beginning when V and her companion Jackie rescue a target, players get to see a fraction of this enormous world. It really gives us the sense of scale, both verticality and horizontality. This even demonstrates further throughout the demo as V goes from her department to the outside. We still cannot sense how exactly big this world is. But what we do know is the liveliness of this city. The land is full of people with various looks and appearances, people who are doing their jobs. It really feels like GTA 5 of different universe.
According to CDPR, there are 6 Districts in total:
- City Center: This is the heart of Night City and also the heart of corporations. The place is full of neon, lights and colors, and of course, the most luxurious stuffs people can imagine.
- Watson: This place is said to be a fallen corporate giant and now it is occupied by immigrants. The place is filled with various bazaars and markets in narrow alleyways. It also has an unique mixture with Asian cultures
- Westbrook: This is the playground for the wealthy to work and spend their money. It also features tourist-oriented Japantown.
- Heywood: This place is predominantly Latino area. Living here means you successfully managed to climb on the social ladder. The area includes massive suburban housing buildings; however, it has serious gang problem.
- Pacifica: This is probably the most dangerous (and most poverty) area of the city. It is separated and abandoned, occupying this place are mostly gangs.
- Santo Domingo: This is where countless power plants and industrial factories situated. It is also the source of power for the Night City.
Judging on the appearance and what happened throughout the demo, the District where this demo takes place is highly Heywood. Even V’s buddy-in-crime Jackie exudes a strong Spanish-English stereotypical vibe.
3. Gangs, factions everywhere
Gangs and factions are predominant forces throughout Night City. For those who do not know, Night City is a fictional city of America which is free of governmental control. The entire city is mainly run by various corporations and obviously, the laws are made by the richest. There are tons of powerful corporations in Night City; all of them possess extreme wealth, power, and even military might. These organizations are so powerful that even crossing one of these corporations can lead to death wish. One such corporation we have seen is Militech which seems to deal with military-grade weaponry.
Aside from these wealthy corporations, there are many smaller gangs and organizations. These are also main “players” in Night City, ranging from “lowlife” gang like Maelstrom in the demo or the high profile fixers like Dexter DeShawn who gave V the test. Based on the Background Check tab in character customization section, there can be a “rebellion force” inspired by Johnny Silverhand the Samurai Rockerboy who represents freedom and fighting for the people.
With all that said, it seems V can associate more with a particular faction or gang depending on player’s choices. There is also a speculation that players will learn optional skills from particular factions based on their relationship. For example, forming a good relationship with corporation may let players learn the skills from Corporation role.
4. Cyberware will be key for success
Cyberware is a huge feature in Cyberpunk 2020 and of course Cyberpunk 2077. Basically Cyberwares are cybernetic enhancements installed directly on human’s body. Each Cyberware provides different perks and benefits, for example prosthetic eye with zooming and scanning ability. Despite the potential benefits from these enhancements, the more enhancements a person installs on him/her, the less humanity that person will be. In the demo, we are also introduced with Maelstrom gang which consists of thugs and outlaws who heavily augmented themselves with Cyberwares. These guys look more like Android or Cyborg rather than an augmented human; thus, they will lose 100% of their humanity.
Players can purchase Cyberwares from the Ripper Docs. Many work legally, while many other may offer players black market products, like military-grade gears. In the demo, we see V installed a Kiroshi eye which allows zooming and scanning, and Subdermal Grip which let players see the bullet count and increases damage of any weapon wielded on that hand.
Cyberwares are awesome, no doubt. But a mercenary cannot just work with Cyberwares alone. What they need is gun, powerful guns with fearsome capabilities. In Cyberpunk 2077 demo, we have seen 4 types of guns: Handgun, Shotgun, Sub-machine gun, and Rifle. Interesting enough, each of these guns has unique firing modes, for example: the Shotgun shown in demo is capable of penetrating wall, while the Sub-machine gun can fire homing bullets.
These gears are also divided in different rarities. So far we can assume as following: Common (White) < Uncommon (Green) < Rare (Blue/Cyan) < Epic (Purple). Potentially there should be a highest rarity which is Legendary; however, none has been shown in this demo.
6. Fighting will be about reflexes
Combat in Cyberpunk 2077 seems to focus on fast-pace shooting and movement. Players can do double jump or sliding, combining with reflex booster (which is like slow-mo from player’s perspective) to maneuver around the level. The player’s movement seems smooth and quick, allowing player to move around, closing-in and distance from enemy fast depending on different situation. And while the demo looks rather easy, we strongly believe that the demo is purposely shown in Easy mode for easier game-mechanic demonstration. The game is potentially much harder to play in higher difficulty. And it should be much more fun since it forces players to think of different approaches rather than charging in front of enemy’s line all the time.
7. So many choices to experiment!
Cyberpunk 2077 is “the city of dream.” And in this city, there are lots, lots of choices. In Cyberpunk 2077 gameplay demo, players already have tons of options and solutions for the problem. The demo showed what happened if players decide to use the Militech’s Agent, turns out, players are also used by her for the corp’s need. But here’s the question: “What if we do not meet the Corp Agent and deal with Maelstrom gang on our own?” Or, “What if we tell the Maelstrom gang about Militech Corp?” These are only 2 of many other options players can go for. All of these choices are organically designed and players always feel like they are in control. If CDPR can pull this out successfully, Cyberpunk 2077 will definitely be an awesome RPG with lots, lots of stuffs to do and try out – true to an excellent RPG just like their previous game The Witcher 3.
8. Street Cred is the new level
Instead of the standard character level we usually see in most RPGs, Cyberpunk 2077 implements a different level system called Street Cred. When V has his/her Street Cred leveled up, V will gain Perk Point just like what shown by the end of the demo (unfortunately we don’t get to see the level up panel). Aside from Perk Point, Street Cred also seems to represent V’s popularity in Night City. The higher the Street Cred, the more famous V will be and supposedly, V will gain accesses to more prestigious areas, vendors, NPCs, missions, etc…
9. The game is mainly First Person Perspective
This aspect is already shared by CDPR prior to this Cyberpunk 2077 gameplay demo. According to the development team, First Person Perspective (FPP) actually suits this game better than Third Person Perspective due to the game’s presentation and player immersion purpose. And after watching the demo, personally we believe this is a right decision from FPP. FPP view let players immerse themselves in this world of Night City; it’s like seeing this new world by their own eyes. The game makes sense in every way, even when taking a new mission, player sees its description right before their eyes, not by opening some menus. That said; there will be moment when players can control in 3rd person perspective; however, this camera angle seems to only activate when driving or possibly controlling a bot.
10. There will be no loading screen
When CDPR said that there would be no loading screen right in Cyberpunk 2077 gameplay demo, we had to speak out loud: “What?” Honestly, we were shocked with this statement due to the size of Night City. This world is so huge in both terms of verticality and horizontality. Players are said to be able to explore megabuildings from floors to floors and this totally changed things. Traditionally, most RPGs feature a “flat world” (including The Witcher 3) where players go from point A to point B. Games like GTA 5 or God of War has proven that “no loading screen” is possible. But for such game like Cyberpunk 2077, it’s so overwhelming that we don’t know how CDPR will make this a reality. That said though, it is worth to hope for.
And that’s it folks! What do you think about Cyberpunk 2077 gameplay demo? Feel free to share with us and for now, thank you and stay tune for more news in the future!
You may also like: