For a game that was announced all the way back in 2013, we sure don’t know a whole lot about CD Projekt Red’s highly anticipated follow-up to our 2015 Game of the Year winner, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. Following an extended Witcher-related silence and a literal burglary, CDPR has kept Cyberpunk‘s secrets close to the vest. But what we do know makes us really excited to dive into this tabletop RPG adaptation.
What we know we know
What is Cyberpunk 2077? Cyberpunk 2077 is a story-based action RPG based on the classic pen-and-paper RPG, Cyberpunk 2020.
When and where will Cyberpunk 2077 be set? Cyberpunk 2077 will return to Cyberpunk 2020‘s Night City, which in the original game is located on the west coast between San Francisco and Los Angeles. It will obviously take place in the year 2077, a time period that’s described as “corrupt and tech-advanced” by developers.
While we don’t know much about the city itself, we do know that the map will be four times bigger than The Witcher 3‘s, which itself was enormous.
What’s Cyberpunk 2077‘s story setup? Cyberpunk 2077‘s story is still something of a mystery to us, but there are a few details we do know. We know that the story will involve a special law enforcement group known as the Maximum Force Tactical Division (MAX-TAC), more colloquially known as the Psycho Squad.
As its name suggests, the Psycho Squad’s main job is tracking down and (if possible) recruiting “psychos.” These are people who’ve overused physiological alterations like implants and other substances to point where the artificial parts of their bodies rebel against not only the organic materials in their bodies, but against all organic materials around them, including other people. This usually results in mass murder against what psychos call “meatbags,” which is just another word for people.
Other than this set up, we really have no idea what the story will look like, though we do know that the game will involve multiple, branching storylines. We also know that Cyberpunk 2020 and Cyberpunk 2077 share a timeline, so historical elements from the original pen-and-paper game will carry over into Cyberpunk 2077.
What will the character-based RPG elements look like in Cyberpunk 2077? Unlike The Witcher 3, which utilized a level-based system with a skill tree that allowed players to somewhat customize Geralt’s strengths, Cyberpunk 2077 will feature a class-based system similar to that in the original pen-and-paper game and will retain that game’s unique classes like journalist or punk rocker. If Cyberpunk 2077 will utilize Cyberpunk 2020‘s skill-based (as opposed to level-based) character system is still unknown, though previous statements made by the developer and Pondsmith himself have indicated that mechanics from 2020 will be integrated into 2077.
Will Cyberpunk 2077 be single-player only? Not entirely. We know that Cyberpunk 2077 will have some kind of multiplayer elements, which we’ll speculate on later. But the main drive of the game still sounds like it will be a story-driven single-player experience.
The Basics (skip)
Who is developing Cyberpunk 2077? CD Projekt Red.
Is there a trailer? The only trailer we have so far is the original teaser from 2013, which shows the Psycho Squad recruiting a new member:
What we think we know
So, about those multiplayer elements…? According to a reliable leak, Cyberpunk 2077 will at the very least feature multiple social hubs located throughout the map (mostly in bars) where players can interact with each other. Think Destiny’s Tower or The Division‘s safe zones.
While it’s unclear how players will specifically interact in these social hubs, one of the more interesting theories is that social hubs will be places where players can find other players whose characters have specific skills or classes that will help them complete specific missions that need (or favor) those classes or skills. This feature could really inject some true role-playing into Cyberpunk 2077. A perhaps more likely but less exciting option is that social hubs will provide a space where players can show off their characters and feature a couple of minigames and vendors, but not much else.
How will combat play out in Cyberpunk 2077? CD Projekt Red and Mike Pondsmith both stated back in 2012 that Cyberpunk 2077 will adopt the “advanced RPG mechanics based on [Cyberpunk 2020‘s] RPG system,” specifically citing the pen-and-paper’s unique combat system, which favors realistic combat over video game– or Hollywood-style fantasy, like the fact that you only need one bullet to kill someone.
Who will you play as in Cyberpunk 2077? While it’s possible that players will take on the role of a specific character (a la Geralt in The Witcher), what seems more likely is that players will take on the role of fully customizable character that will revolve around whatever class player choose in the early stages of the game. We’re thinking something more akin to Dragon Age: Origins, where you can pick one background from several options and take it from there.
What platforms will get Cyberpunk 2077? CD Projekt Red hasn’t confirmed any platforms, but we think it’s safe to assume (barring a huge exclusivity coup) that Cyberpunk 2077 will launch for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. At least, as long as it’s released within the next few years.
What we still want to know
When can I play Cyberpunk 2077? Well, considering CD Projekt Red debuted the game in 2012 with a 2015 release date, your guess is as good as ours. We do know, following the success of The Witcher 3, that CD Projekt Red completely went back to rework major parts Cyberpunk 2077, now that it had some money to spend and invest in the game’s development. That was two years ago now, and we still haven’t heard word one about a release date.
Well, when will CD Projekt Red announce a release date? Given the time frame, it wouldn’t be completely out of the realm of possibility that we’ll be getting a solid Cyberpunk 2077 sometime in 2018. The Witcher 3 and its DLC is all finished, and Gwent is… whatever. The only thing CD Projekt Red has to focus on right now is Cyberpunk 2077, and we hope by this point there’s at least a new trailer on the horizon.