Cyberpunk 2077

You should definitely play through the game a second time if you haven’t yet.

So, I really, really love this game.

I initially played this game on release. I didn't quite rush to the end, but I felt like I had seen and done enough of the content to go past the point of no return on my stealthy blade Nomad V, especially because I didn't want to see spoilers on the internet. I played the game on PC and while my initial experience was still very buggy, I was still playing a version of the game much closer to the intended experience compared to consoles. The constant bugs were bearable but would always break immersion.

I played my first game and finished it up with about 40 hours. I walked away feeling pretty disappointed overall. I didn't like the crafting systems at all, there was no car customization, barber/chop shop/transmogrification, your cybernetic enhancements didn't really show on your character aside from your arms, and any sort of crime/police system was functionally absent (this is still mainly true today). I was disappointed with the removal of wallrunning, but the interiors in this game are so varied I can't imagine how it would've worked consistently at all. There was a comment that resonated with me that said Cyberpunk 2077 was a good game, but everyone wanted it to be a great game.

I decided recently to play the game a second time. I rolled a quickhacking Corpo Fem V, and this time I maxed out my street cred, collected some cars and did most of the side missions. I took more of my time to read lore shards as well.

Holy shit.

When I did my first playthrough I didn't realize the much wider pool of characters will follow-up with more missions later. I got a more varied spread of of really awesome missions compared to my first playthrough – I never finished missions for River or the Peralezes and I was really blown away by the overall presentation the second time around.

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The game's graphics and environments consistently great and varied. The differences in architecture, interiors and even the advertisements in different districts really make Night City feel like a real place with history. The interiors range from grimy/dilapidated to ultra-pristine. One restaurant I found this playthrough was just a line of like eight vending machines with no people managing it. The lower SES areas look like they were mass-produced cheap by megacorpos, and the experience really is greater than the sum of its parts here. Sometimes I like to just walk down the streets and look around at the scenery, but other times I resent how weirdly washed-out certain areas look. This game also has some of the best facial animations I've ever seen and it really helps to empathize with characters, especially when there aren't people randomly crouching in fear behind them as consistently.

The story is mostly good. It's a little flat sometimes, but I generally like the characters and there are enough twists to keep you interested.

I've clocked a little over 110 hours now after my second playthrough. This time I did the>! Johnny Silverhand!< ending where you give him control. Both the endings I played to the game felt like they were the natural/"true" endings to my character's playthrough, and I was actually shocked to see how different they both were. I also really loved playing with the band. I didn't do all the prerequisites for the secret ending, but I'm going to do that on my third character. I was able to play the game very differently from my first playthrough with different people being alive/dead, which is pretty neat.

I didn't want to make this crazy long, but I do have criticism that I definitely want to put forward.

  • The crime/police system is more serviceable than it was, but the game really needs to stop spawning police next to you. There aren't really any crimes to commit I guess, but the game shows you the police force/Maxtac several times in cars and floating carriers. It would make sense for them to use tire strips or hack your vehicle or something. I'm guessing these systems just weren't fully implemented due to time. It would also be cool after taking out local gang activity if they sent men after you in retaliation every once in a while; it would make the districts feel a little more alive.
  • There are still plenty of bugs, even though I got way fewer of them. The worst bugs for me were when people would talk over each other, or I'm talking to a character and somebody calls me and it automatically answers the phone. It just sucks.
  • This game outside of a few specific boss fights is never challenging. It's either too easy and you rip through groups of people with stealth/combat, or you are just not high enough level to approach the content. It rarely feels like there is a middle ground, which is a shame because the core combat of the game is pretty fun depending on how you build. It just all ends up feeling samey because you don't ever really need to mix it up too much. I really loved the fight with Oda though.
  • The lack of all the customization options I mentioned in the second paragraph.
  • All of V's corpo dialogue options are awesome and made my character feel like her backstory mattered.
  • Keanu's voice performance is very inconsistent. It has high highs and low lows, but his biggest scenes at his grave and apologizing to Alt were very solid.
  • Please keep working to improve the crowd AI. Sometimes I see loads of them and other times the streets are basically empty, but every time I see them their pathfinding and animations are bad if their AI isn't broken altogether. I loved what I saw from the initial reveals of the game and I can see what they are going for, but it also really breaks immersion.
  • Some perks are boring/useless and could use another look.
  • No fast travel/Excelsior package for Delamain's car? He also barely greets you if you drive the vehicle around.
  • Gimmethetram Gimmethetram Gimmethetram
  • NG+?
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Honestly, besides that I think it's absolutely a really great game, and it's worth the full $60. If you can get it on sale then you definitely should imo. The game needs a little more work, but it's also got a great foundation under the hood for more content. It just sucks that it was clearly released too early. I understand a lot of the criticism that the developers got, I'm just hopeful they are able to keep working on it because I've had a great experience with it.


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