As Cyberpunk 2077's big E3 2018 coming-out party fades further and further into memory, it's like the late, great Tom Petty said: "The waiting for a first-person, open-world, sci-fi RPG from the makers of The Witcher 3 is the hardest part." But that doesn't mean you should start constructing your own all-encompassing virtual world where Cyberpunk 2077 is already out (though if you can do that… call me), because there's still plenty of new information to glean about the game: from an ongoing official frame-by-frame analysis of the new trailer to interviews with the series' original creator, we got Cyberpunk. Now let's check it out.
Cyberpunk 2077's release date is "going to take time"
The Cyberpunk 2077 release date has never been officially set, and CD Projekt Red has said it will be ready when it's ready. That still leaves a little wiggle room for thinking "maybe it will be sooner rather than later," but the creator of the original Cyberpunk tabletop role-playing game gave some more context for where the game is in a recent interview: "We have an awful lot of stuff that we want to do, and it's going to take time to do it. And I'm hoping the fans are going to give us the time to do it," Mike Pondsmith said. "We need space, we need time, and we need the privacy to mull it over." And that really doesn't sound like "surprise holiday release window" material, unfortunately.
Cyberpunk 2077 gameplay is first-person role-playing
Think less Witcher or GTA and more open-world Deus Ex. It was a big surprise when the first behind-closed-doors gameplay demos for Cyberpunk 2077 revealed the game takes place from a first-person perspective, but it quickly became clear that CDPR knows what it's doing. Combat is firearm-heavy but not in the usual stop-and-pop sense: you can use augments to track the ricochet of your shots and blast fools around walls, for example, or use the ultra-sharp blades hidden in your forearms to dig into a wall up high and find yourself a perfect firing angle. The game does go into third-person for cinematic cutscenes, and you can also opt for a detached camera for vehicular play. Did I mention there are drivable cars and motorcycles?
Cyberpunk 2077 trailer shows life in a colorful dystopia
The second trailer for Cyberpunk 2077 is a stark contrast to the original: it was made inside the game engine and shows scenes from all across Night City, as opposed to the first trailer which was built with CGI and took place almost entirely in one super-slow-motion moment. We see various scenes of life, spanning from a subway car to a city street to inside a corporate office, and a narrator tells us about how things kinda suck around here but people keep crowding in anyway. Turns out the narrator is our main character V, or one possible version, and things quickly escalate with scenes of big guns, aerial shootouts, and car chases. And we're officially excited.
Cyberpunk 2077's PC specs are reasonable (so far)
The E3 demo of Cyberpunk 2077 looked really good in cramped hallways and more open areas alike. You might worry about that kind of heavily choreographed demo also running on the equivalent of a NASA supercomputer, but it turns out the PC specs were pretty reasonable - at least as far as fairly high-end gaming builds go.
- CPU: Intel Core i7 8700K at 3.70GHz
- Motherboard: Asus ROG Strix Z370-I Gaming
- RAM: 32GB of G.Skill Ripjaws V DDR4 RAM with a speed of 3,000MHz
- GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080Ti
- Storage: Samsung 960 Pro 512GB SSD
- PSU: Corsair SF600W power supply
We did some comparison shopping to put together a current PC build with those components and came to a price just north of $2,500. That's a lot, but keep in mind two things: 1) PC component prices drop over time as more powerful successors emerge, and 2) that was likely a very high-resolution, demanding, and most of all unoptizimed version of the game. There's a good chance that Cyberpunk 2077's minimum and even recommended PC specs will be lower than the E3 demo machine.
Cyberpunk 2077 character creation is confirmed
I said "one possible version" before because you'll be able to create your own character as soon as you start playing Cyberpunk 2077. You'll be able to customize V's face and body in the usual cosmetic ways, but you'll also be able to make some choices that influence the story as well: your character's gender will change things a bit, moreso the background you pick for them. And there are no pre-defined classes, but you will be able to allocate your skills and abilities as you prefer. You can continue to refine and customize your character in the game proper by installing Cyberware to do all kinds of things; a few examples include augmentations that boost your reflexes or give you better tactical awareness in combat.
Cyberpunk 2077's setting is Night City
There's no other place like Night City. Located about halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco (where the city of Morro Bay is in real life), its six districts span the socioeconomic spectrum from opulence to abject poverty. At the shining top is City Center, where the biggest corporations compete to make the most showy headquarters possible. At the grimy bottom is Pacifica, a distant part of the city that has been partially abandoned and overrun by gangs. In between are the industrial district of Santo Domingo, the tourist-friendly Westbrook, the affluent suburbs of Heywood, and the dense tangle of life and commerce that is Watson. Each zone will span a decent chunk of horizontal real estate, but CDPR says vertical exploration will be just as important. You'll need to go floor-by-floor if you want to discover every corner of Cyberpunk 2077's world.