Anticipation for the Cyberpunk 2077 release date couldn’t have been higher. CD Projekt Red had kept us waiting for years to find out, so when Keanu Reeves showed up at E3 2019 to reveal it, alongside the fact he’ll be playing Johnny Silverhand, we went somewhat into overdrive.
Alongside that, we got a good peep at more gameplay footage, which builds upon the E3 2018 demo that showed Cyberpunk 2077 is the answer to, perhaps, the biggest game development question of the decade: how do you follow up something like The Witcher 3? Polish RPG powerhouse CD Projekt Red is looking to replicate its successes with Eastern Europe’s beloved fantasy book series by turning its hand to the futuristic world of Cyberpunk 2077.
CD Projekt Red’s videogame is an adaptation of the Cyberpunk 2020 pen-and-paper game. It’s a first-person RPG set in a gritty, vast future metropolis known as Night City. Like The Witcher 3, it’s an adult story, touching on drugs, violence, and social politics. It’s almost certainly going to be the most talked about game when it finally releases next year. Here’s everything we know about Cyberpunk 2077.
Cyberpunk 2077 release date
The official Cyberpunk 2077 release date is September 17, 2020. That means there’s not long left to wait until we’re able to explore the seedy underbelly of Night City.
That comes from CD Projekt Red itself, who reveals the news on their official Twitter account.
Cyberpunk 2077 gameplay
Cyberpunk 2077 gameplay first debuted behind closed doors at E3, and CD Projekt Red showcased the same demo to a select few at Gamescom. Soon after the developers have revealed that footage to the general public. You can view it in full below.
In it we see one of Cyberpunk 2077’s side missions play out, and quite how much the game owes to the pen-and-paper RPGs from which it takes inspiration. Our character, V, is given the task from famed Fixer, Dexter DeShawn to take an expensive spider bot drone, by any means necessary.
The bot, it turns out, is part of a haul stolen from Militech by the Maelstrom gang. The mission sees you play off both groups in either a peaceful or violent way, or an approach somewhere in between. We also get a proper introduction to the seedy underbelly – and overbelly, really – of Night City both on foot and on four wheels, and a visual representation of how weapon and character upgrades work.
According to quest director Mateusz Tomaszkiewicz, however, what we saw was a mere fragment of the overall game and the Cyberpunk 2077 demo has changed a lot since. Speaking to Areajugones (via dsogaming), he says “the demo shown last year was only a small fragment of the actual game,” and that it wasn’t clear from the gameplay video “how the game fits into an open world or how it fits into a larger image of the game. I would say that the game is pretty different to what we [showed] last year.”
CD Projekt Red livestreamed 15 minutes of a gameplay demo for Cyberpunk 2077, including snippets of already seen footage at Gamescom, plus new content, characters, and different play styles you can adopt along the way. The footage is designed to exclude spoilers, but does include new character information and reveals a part of the map, Pacifica. You can watch the full deep dive video below.
While we could admire Geralt’s shock of white hair in the third-person The Witcher 3, Cyberpunk 2077 is a first-person RPG – and we mean 100% first-person. You will have three main types of Cyberpunk 2077 weapons that include melee weapons and high-tech guns, and you will indulge in a bit of Watch-Dogs-style scanning and, with the right Cyberpunk 2077 abilities, plenty of hacking.
While you’ll be flooded with upgrade options for V’s skill tree, that same level of customisation won’t be found in their apartment. According to Polish games magazine PSX Extreme (spotted by DSO Gaming on Reddit), lead quest designer Paweł Sasko says “decorating your apartment doesn’t really go well with the vision of a dark and gritty spirit of the game”.
You also have two types of Cyberpunk 2077 XP: core XP and ‘Street Cred’. The former is earned by completing main missions, but you only build Street Cred by completing side missions. You can then spend your special experience points to access new vendors and Fixers, a special type of quest giver. You can also boost your Street Cred with Cyberpunk 2077 gear, which includes designer clothing that will grant you elemental defense stats.
Given what’s most likely going to be a gargantuan world, you’re going to need a way to get around. Usefully, then, we have plenty of Cyberpunk 2077 vehicles such as armoured-plated cars and motorbikes to better explore the world, and action-packed car chases. Unfortunately, you will not be able control any of the flying vehicles in the world, but you will be able to steal cars to rapidly get around Night City. CD Projekt Red also say that there will be no loading screens to get in the way of your exploration of this handcrafted game world.
In terms of Cyberpunk 2077 combat, we can expect everything from numbers popping out of enemies to a full destruction system to crop up during gun battles. There are weapons with smart-tracking bullets, weapons that can shoot through walls, and abilities that can hack enemies brains to mush, so you will have a variety of ways to take on every fight. A lot of your combat potential will be decided by which implants and augmentations you have equipped, but be wary of installing too many implants as you can develop Cyberpsychoses in Cyberpunk 2077.
Night City is a seedy spot where criminal gangs often rule the roost, so how will you let your hair down after shooting up a gang hideout? Well, we know that there will be Cyberpunk 2077 romance options that allow you to flirt with NPCs and have one night stands with them. That the game has “full-frontal nudity” shouldn’t surprise Witcher 3 fans; Geralt did get around the block a few times. In fact, CDPR has even said that romances will unfurl like they did in the Witcher 3, and will have their own plot lines. On a totally unrelated note, CDPR is supposedly “planning” a Cyberpunk 2077 photo mode.
Regarding quest design, you can expect to complete some of them in three to five different ways. That comes from senior quest designer Philip Weber, who delved into Cyberpunk 2077’s mission design on a Reddit thread. Weber explains that Cyberpunk 2077’s class system has impacted the ways players can interact with the game’s missions. Weber then goes on to say that using the skills from these class systems “gives you more (as an example, three to five in some cases) ways how to solve a quest or challenges within a quest. This naturally makes quest designs more complex in some areas, but it’s honestly great fun to do.” It’s also worth adding that there will not be any procedurally generated quests in Cyberpunk 2077.
There are multiple ways you can start the game, too. Speaking to VG247, Sasko explains that your created character can start as a Nomad, Corpo, or a Street Kid, and that it influences how the story unfurls – while also changing where you start the game.
The Cyberpunk 2077 game over screen will only roll if your character dies, too – meaning that even if you’re tasked with escorting an individual, and that person dies, the world goes on the same. If you’re thinking that could lead to some silly hi-jinks, then you’ll likely find CD Projekt in agreement. In an interview with German outlet GameStar (translated on Reddit), Philipp Webser explains that quest designers asked themselves at every turn what the stupidest thing a player could do in that given moment – with missions then being built around that.
“We tried. We were thinking about VR but, yeah, we’re not doing anything with VR. We got the VR dev kits but….” Mamais says to OnMSFT. “Some things would work in VR but, I think, it’s not really viable yet. You’re not making a lot of money in VR yet. It’s very experimental and niche, yeah. I would like to. I like VR but we’re not doing anything with it yet.”
Cyberpunk 2077 trailer
All of Cyberpunk 2077’s intense hype started with this title reveal four years ago. How time flies when you’re waiting for a sprawling RPG to play.
The second teaser trailer gave us our first look at the world, with bulletproof cheeks, bladed arms, and future police trying to bring down this cybernetically enhanced criminal.
Cyberpunk 2077 story
Cyberpunk 2077 takes place in, you guessed it, the year 2077. In a sprawling metropolis called Night City, you take on the role of a fully-voiced, streetwise young man or woman – you can play as either gender in Cyberpunk 2077 – raised in the gutter and wants to improve their life. The street gangs and megacorps will do all they can to keep people down.
The streets of Cyberpunk 2077 will be filthy, drug infested, poverty-stricken hellholes, with the rich presiding over it all in their ivory towers. V describes it as “the worst place in America.” As well as coping with rampaging madmen, many of the poor are addicted to a new drug called the braindance, which allows them to experience the emotions and stimuli of another person. For just a few hours, you can be rich, successful, and popular with your preferred gender. Because braindances aren’t livestreamed, viewers can experience any moment in another person’s life, living it as if it were real.
Most of these experiences are tailored by megacorporations, with braindances sold to the populace as a form of entertainment. There are also braindances created on the black market, obtained illicitly, that offer much darker dreams, such as feeling the bloodlust of a serial killer. It’s going to be dark as hell, basically.
Related: Hone your shooting skills in the best FPS games on PC
There will be multiple Cyberpunk 2077 endings, too. GameSpot spots that the game’s Quest Director Mateusz Tomaszkiewicz recently told YouTuber YongYea in an interview that Cyberpunk 2077 will feature more than one ending. In the interview, around 15 minutes in, Tomaszkiewicz simply answers “yes” to the question of whether there are multiple endings. There wasn’t any elaboration beyond that, however.
We also know that Cyberpunk 2077 will exist in the same timeline as the Cyberpunk 2020 board game that it takes its inspiration from. Cyberpunk 2020 creator Mike Pondsmith took to Reddit to clear up some misinformation on the subject, as another interview suggest the two games would be separate.
“There’s still an incorrect interview floating around the interwebs that states that Cyberpunk 2077 and Cyberpunk 2020 are separate timelines,” he says. “To clear this up, I am posting right here and now that the timeline is unified, with the path moving from Cyberpunk 2013 through Cyberpunk 2020, then through Cyberpunk RED and up to Cyberpunk 2077.”
Cyberpunk 2077 classes
There are three playable Cyberpunk 2077 classes: Netrunner, Techie, and Solo. You will not have to pick one of the three – you can either focus on one or mix abilities and play styles from all three class types. If you’re unfamiliar with Cyberpunk lore, Netrunners are hackers, Techies are crafting specialists, and Solos are lone mercenaries.
All three of these classes come straight from the tabletop RPG, but are only three of many classes in Cyberpunk 2020 – other classes like Rockerboys, Nomads, and Journalists will be present in certain Cyberpunk 2077 NPCs.
We’ve already made up our mind on what class we’re starting with, and it’s the Cyberpunk 2077 Netrunner class. As well as classes, you’ll also be able to customise your character, as shown in the 2018 demo, along with your backstory. Character customisation includes your appearance, gender, and voice. You’ll also have stats such as strength, intelligence, and reflexes which will influence the play style.
Cyberpunk 2077 characters
We have details on five Cyberpunk 2077 characters who featured prominently in the E3 2018 demo. Firstly, there’s Jackie Welles, a mercenary who takes on bounties and operates on the fringes of the big league. Dexter DeShawn is the next face we run into – Dexter is a Fixer, someone who handles odd jobs ranging from kidnappings to assassinations provided the price is right. Fixers effectively liaise between mercenaries and clients, organising dirty work. Night City is full of Fixers, and Dexter DeShawn is among the most sought after.
Royce is the boss of Maelstrom, a Watson-based gang who specialise in raiding mega corporations to steal tech. He’s cold, calculating, and untrustworthy. In the demo we also meet ripperdoc Doctor Victor, as skilled with a scalpel as he is with a screwdriver. Victor can heal you, repair broken cyberware, and install new implants and tech fresh from the black market. Finally, there’s Meredith Stout, an agent for the Militech corporation – she’s an egomaniac and despises anyone from the lower classes.
Keanu Reeves will grace our monitors as Johnny Silverhand, a beloved character from the original tabletop game, but he won’t be joined by the Fame Monster Lady Gaga despite rumours to the contrary that she would appear as an NPC. Speaking to Wccftech, UI co-ordinator Alvin Liu says that, while she is “pretty cyberpunk”, that she will not be apart of Cyberpunk 2077. We guess she wouldn’t pick up her telephone.
Cyberpunk 2077 map
Cyberpunk 2077 is going to be sizeable, if you hadn’t guessed. In fact, even level design coordinator Peter Gelenscer doesn’t know how big it is because Cyberpunk is much more vertical than The Witcher 3. At E3 2018, Gelenscer was cagey about an exact Cyberpunk 2077 map size but he did say “it shouldn’t be big, it should be enough.”
Speaking to MCV back in 2015, visual effects artist Jose Teixeira said: “Cyberpunk is far bigger than anything else that CD Projekt Red has done before. Far, far bigger.
“We’re really stepping into the unknown in terms of complexity and size and problems we encounter,” he said. He also went on to explain how The Witcher 3 was a learning experience, and the studio is confident they can do even better next time. Considering the jump between The Witcher 2 and The Witcher 3, we’re inclined to believe it.
CD Projekt Red has doubled in size to meet this goal. Studio head Adam Badowski said The Witcher 3 raised the bar, meaning Cyberpunk 2077 needs to be “even better, even bigger, even more revolutionary” than originally planned.
The map will be split into six Cyberpunk 2077 districts: City Center, Watson, Westbrook, Heybrook, Pacifica, and Santo Domingo. Naturally, City Center is the city’s beating heart and is luxurious owing to the number of corporations present there. Watson boasts a blend of Asian cultures who inhabit the buildings of an old corporate giant. Next up is Westbrook, a tourist hub with sites like Japantown that cater to those who like to let loose a little. Heywood is the Latino district of Night City, a sprawling suburban area populated by those at the higher rungs of the social ladder – but there is a hidden gang problem.
Outside of the main city you’ll find the poorest and most dangerous district is Pacifica, cut off from much of Night City and plagued with gang violence from rival gangs the Animals and the Voodoo Boys. Finally, Santo Domingo represents Night City’s power and industrial area.
Cyberpunk 2077 multiplayer
CD Projekt Red said back in 2013 that Cyberpunk 2077 would have “multiplayer features” but we know from E3 2018 that Cyberpunk 2077 multiplayer will not be available at launch. CD Projekt’s upcoming RPG will launch single-player only, but multiplayer is currently in R&D, according to quest designer Patrick Mills in an interview with Eurogamer.
The Cyberpunk 2077 multiplayer is being worked on by a Canadian studio called Digital Scapes. The studio is made up of developers from BioWare, Relic, and Radical, and has also worked with Dying Light developers Techland. Considering Digital Scapes helped with the PvP invasion mechanic present in Dying Light, there’s the slimmest chance that Cyberpunk 2077 will boast a proper multiplayer system.
Read more: Keep yourself busy with the best cyberpunk games
If we are lucky enough to enjoy an online component in Cyberpunk 2077 we would expect a co-op system similar to the one in Dark Souls, but we’d also be happy to destroy our real-life dystopian rivals in a good car chase through Night City.
Cyberpunk 2077 steam
CD Projekt Red’s next game is, indeed, up for grabs on Steam, and you can grab your Steam pre-order now. In fact, it’s already topping the Steam wishlists chart. If you’d rather buy your games elsewhere, though, then Cyberpunk 2077 will also pop up on the Epic Store and, of course, GOG.
WILL CYBERPUNK 2077 HAVE MICROTRANSACTIONS?
The good news is Cyberpunk 2077 won’t have any microtransactions CD Projekt Red confirm saying, they don’t want to “lose the goodwill of our customers”. The head of the Krakow office even went as far to say that he thinks microtransactions are a “bad idea”. So you can sleep easy knowing Cyberpunk 2077 will arrive free of microtransactions this September.
Cyberpunk 2077 system requirements
Of course it’s far too early for any final Cyberpunk 2077 system requirements, but the rig that powered the E3 2019 demo, according to SpielTimes, involves an Intel i7-8700K CPU, 32GB of RAM and the NVIDIA Titan RTX Graphics card. That’s all accompanied by a 512 GB Samsung 960 SSD, a 600W Corsair PSU, and an ASUS Motherboard.
Sound expensive? That’s because it is. Ali had a quick look around and came to a £3,362 ($4,233) price tag, roughly. That’s high-end, for sure, but we can take some solace that this build is merely here to show off Cyberpunk 2077 at it’s glittery best. Over the coming months the game is sure to be optimised, which means our PCs may live to see another day.
If you’re excited for the Cyberpunk 2077 release date this September, check out other open-world games you could be playing in the meantime.