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Cyberpunk 2077


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http://www.ign.com//articles/2018/06/12/e3-2018-first-cyberpunk-2077-details-game-is-a-first-person-rpg-more

Additional Info:
https://www.resetera.com/threads/cyberpunk-2077-e3-2018.48109/page-86#post-9142148

Quote
  • CD Projekt describes the game as a "first-person RPG."
  • Gameplay is in first a first-person perspective, but switched to third-person during a cutscene.
  • You play a character named V (as in the letter).
  • V can be a man or a woman.
  • The stats you pick at the start include Strength, Constitution, Intelligence, Reflexes, Tech, and Cool.
  • These stats are all pulled from the original tabletop RPG.
  • There are no classes at the start. Instead, you evolve the class you want to be as you play instead of picking a role.

Sounds neat. 

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This is a written description of the behind closed doors walkthough.  Sounds like they gave an hour long demo filled with plenty of content.  The game sounds like Deus Ex meets Witcher 3 on steroids. 

https://www.gameinformer.com/preview/2018/06/12/impressions-and-details-from-50-minutes-of-gameplay

EDIT: Another one

https://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2018-06-13-we-watched-50-minutes-of-uncut-cyberpunk-2077-gameplay-and-interviewed-cd-projekt-about-it

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  • 2 months later...

EDIT:
This image is hidden as a few frames near the end of the video.  The devs are basically saying, "we're still working on it, please don't expect this to be 1:1 what we release" which I totally understand.  There was some decent blowback on the Witcher 3's "downgrade" so that's part of the reason why they didn't want to just release this footage to everyone. 

I'm still very hyped because this looks like a mix of Deus Ex, Prey 2 (the unreleased one) and the Witcher 3.  I'll pre-order this as soon as they announce it, they've earned my trust and respect for putting out incredible games. 

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  • 1 month later...
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There's some various posts around the internet from reviewers that have spent time with the game, almost all of them are overwhelmingly positive.  They mention it's not perfect but it's fantastic.  All the media so far is only talking about the prologue, which I assume is roughly the same as withcer 3's prologue (white orchard) where you have a main quest and maybe 1-2 side quests to get you used to the game before you get thrown into the entire world. 

EDIT:

Some basic info that I found interesting. 

  • 3 different starting backstories (corporate, nomad, street kid) which have a ~30 minute intro (mostly cutscene based) to give you a feel for your character's backstory.
  • The main types of combat are melee, firearms, stealth, and hacking - most people think the gunplay is decent but the melee is meh.  Stealth is fairly basic and hacking was even more basic, but this was only in the prologue.
    • The hacking minigame was described as complicated
  • They're attempting the seamless style gameplay and use cutscenes to mask loading sceens (flying into the bar is a cutscene or limited ability to look around).
  • Most reviewers said you feel like you're dropped in the deep end, could be slightly overwhelming to try and track all the characters/factions at the beginning.
  • The braindance mechanic is a love/hate thing for most people, it's probably better than the witcher 3 following a trail type of quests but I personally think it's a lame mechanic that they probably spent too much time on.
  • Overall impressions were very positive, with some minor gripes about various elements. 

I think people should remember that the witcher 3 was not praised for the combat (I found it basic/mediocre) but for the quests and stories.  I expect the same with cyberpunk2077. 
Some of the initial impressions - HERE

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Double posting because why not. 

Some non-spoiler notes from a few games journalists that had extensive previews of the game:

  • The prologue is very long, between 4-7 hours
  • You can play large portions of the game without combat - not just stealth or non-lethal
    • In most open world games when you travel from point to point there are random combat encounters, because cyberpunk 2077 is set in a city, you can travel most of the city without running into random encounters
    • Conversely, if you want to seek out random combat there are options for doing so
    • Combat is very RPG focused and most enemies will be bullet sponges
  • Several comparisons to Deus Ex (especially the original game)
  • Many people are talking about how the game is slower paced, this ties into the ability to play large sections without combat
  • The UI and quest log is a low point, quests didn't display levels or rewards just a rough "difficulty" setting

Overall the early reviews are extremely positive but they're trying to temper some of the hype. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

No spoilers.

Just a shotgun of impressions after playing for a few hours. All of it was streamed so you can check those recordings on Twitch.

  • The size of the world map is huge.
  • The aesthetic of the game and world map is very good and very much in line with "traditional cyberpunk".
  • Lots of things small events happening all over the city that you can choose to get involved in although most of them are pretty simple.
  • The skill tree feels really big and (based on the perk descriptions) seems like it is very impactful. I'm not sure if maxing everything is reasonable possible.
  • Something about the mouse input feels off. Laggy. Not raw. I'm not sure if it's just related to FPS or not but it just makes aiming feel much harder than it should be. I really hole this is fixable.
  • The light and shadows system is disappointing. Even on high settings there is a lack of dynamic light and shadow. Maybe that is limited to ultra settings but lots of other games do not require that.
  • FPS on high settings with my GTX1080 @ 1440p was just barely playable. I ended up going down to medium to get more comfortable FPS. This does not really match up with the system requirements the devs provided. I have not even bothered trying ultra.
  • Bugs. Nothing like what I saw some people reporting but I have run into a few already. People walking through doors. Items being unequipped for no reason. Nothing game breaking yet.
  • I can't tell if some of the special dialogue options (not just the extra ones) are impactful or just there for "flavor". Need to play more to find out but I hope some of my dialogue options make a difference later.
  • Kind of overwhelming amount of controls. Maybe I will get more comfortable with this over time.
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  • Performance doesn't scale worth shit
    • I've tweaked some settings and without RTX I can get a decent average of 90fps with 60 lows - same settings with RTX is down in the 48fps average range - on higher settings I was getting roughly the same RTX performance
    • I've noticed restarting the game after changing major settings is probably a good idea
  • The skill tree is indeed multifaceted and confusing, it's a mix of elder scrolls and traditional skill trees
    • It's neat that some stuff is just leveled up by using it, ala elder scrolls - I'm actually ok with that
    • The skill trees do have some requirements and cool stuff, but there's also plenty of +10% of X type of traits that take 1-3 points of investment, I wish more devs were willing to cut the size of skill trees but make them more impactful
  • I've actually only run into 2 visual bugs, one was jackie eating food and having some floating chopsticks in front of him, another was 2 NPCs spawned on top of each other
  • I actually dislike how they handle conversations, the fact you need to scroll through options with Q/E instead of them being listed 1-5 or something is kinda odd
  • Some of the hacking controls are likewise rather strange, not sure if that's me being derpy but scrolling through options feels incredibly unintuitive
  • Visuals are still really good even on mostly medium settings - I know some people are comparing this to crysis and I have a feeling some people will use this as a benchmark for many years to come - although I preferred some of the raytracing and DLSS options in Control
  • I did run into one side job that was probably way over my level.  I managed to beat it by circle stugging around the melee enemy and dumping bullets into them - the AI in this game isn't going to win any prizes
    • Why is there another boxing quest cdprojekt.... and why do I feel compelled to do it...

Overall I'm definitely enjoying myself, I'm still not sure what playstyle I want to try for.  I might try out a few things before I find my groove. 

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You mentioned the AI which is something I forgot in my last post. The aggro system seems weird to me. While sprinting did you bump into a gang member? Too bad. Now all the fellow gang members in the area (even out of line of site) have aggroed on you. This basically means you have to leave the whole area now or gun them all down. Did you step behind the counter at the bar? Not even a warning. Instant full aggro. Leave the area or fight. I am assuming there is some kind of logic to this but I don't know what it is yet.

 

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If you get too close to "aggressive" NPCs they go to the alerted state and might even shoot at you.  I've also had times where simply scanning an NPC that was in vision set them to aggro me. 
The stealth is especially janky, most stealth games I've seen have had 2 states, suspicious and alerted, this game seems to have those states but the UI shows hostile NPCs jumping straight to the red/alerted mode if they spot you. 

I know some people are halfway joking when they say the game should really have been delayed another year, but there are absolutely some systems that need fixing and bugs that need squashing. 

I expect that the game will play much better in 3-6 months when we've seen several major patches.  They've already mentioned they're going to make DLC for the game, so they have a vested interest in improving it. 

I still haven't even touched the crafting/upgrade system.  The complexity in this game is even higher than the witcher 3 and that's a bit intimidating.  I suspect I need a few more hours of play to really get a handle on all the various game systems. 

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More random thoughts after some additional time with the game. 

  • I understand the stealth system more, but it's still busted.  Specifically enemies seem to 50/50 on if they can discover bodies, including through walls behind cover etc.  Basically if a body isn't dumped in a fridge/crate within about 5 seconds there's a good chance enemies will go into the alert state.
    • The stealth system doesn't work the way most other stealth games function.  If you're in an unrestricted area and an enemy spots you they go to yellow, they draw weapons and might even get mad enough at you to shoot if you go aggressive.  If you're in a restricted area they skip yellow alert and go red if you're discovered, launching straight into combat. 
      This system makes some sense except for the poor AI and the aforementioned issue of discovered bodies putting enemies into the yellow/searching state.
    • I actually really like what they did with suppressors, they drop raw damage output by some % but they add a 200%+ modifier on headshots - this means you can pop heads out of stealth but you suffer a damage penalty if you're running/gunning. 
  • My build is very jack of all trades at the moment, which seems to be working.  I haven't struggled with content so far, I'm not sure rushing any skill to 20 is the correct play. 
  • Under Cool, the perk cold blood is absolutely a 1 point wonder, it levels up naturally and just feeds extra bonuses and perk points, totally worth it. 

I've seen some people suggest the quest writing isn't as good as the witcher 3, and while I'm still very early on I'm not sure I agree with that assessment.  People point to the bloody barron questline in witcher 3 as some sort of gold standard, but that quest didn't actually grab me as much as the main quests for both DLCs.  I think a large portion of cyberpunk side quests and gigs are more about the background of the city and give you a taste of what a dystopian nightmare it is - where witcher 3 was far more focused on geralt trying to help make the world a less awful place. 

Spoilers for the quest "The Heist" aka the main quest up to the title screen and slightly past it

Spoiler

While I thought this mission was very combat light, it felt incredibly cinematic.  It actually reminded me a bit of gillied up from modern warfare.  It served as a really good setpiece to thrust you into something far bigger than your character and was way more effective than when Geralt meets the emperor of nilfgaard at the beginning of witcher 3. 

The interlude section where you play a flashback from Johnny Silverhand works super well, but I have to give even more credit to the developers because that sequence actually lines up with the original tabletop game.  I think without knowing that it just seems like a kinda cool flashback to give some background on johnny, but it really adds a level of detail and fanservice to those that know a bit about the cyberpunk RPG. 

I'd heard some people say that Keanu's performance was a bit stiff and while I haven't seen much of it, so far I agree.  It's not immersion breaking but it's not nearly as good as other celebrity voice work I've seen in games - Martin Sheen as the illusive man comes to mind as an example of a good celebrity character. 

 

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I'm pretty willing right now to label this game as an "unfinished masterpiece". I feel like I know exactly what they were going for and the end product would have been amazing but since it has just so many rough edges all over the place it just doesn't quite win 1st place.

Spoiler

The Heist was a perfect example of this. So many parts of it felt really good (dialog, cinematics, tense moments, options, etc.) but it was also marred by many little issues (stealth weirdness, strange hacking behavior, etc.) that just took the shine off of the experience.

 

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I think that's a fair assessment.  There's serious issues with stealth and enemies finding bodies, police just spawn on top of you.  There are straight up broken balance issues, physics problems, visual glitches, quest's not completing properly, dialogue being out of order etc. 

In spite of all those issues, the game is still enjoyable and still manages to capture the feeling of a sci-fi megacity.  Night city is absolutely the standard that many open world cities will be measured against.  And the graphics are very good. 

When the game is running well, and all the mechanics are behaving properly, it is a fantastic game.  Sadly there are plenty of issues getting in the way of a wonderful experience. 

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I know the popular narrative right now is focused on the continued bugs (which I do still run into), the newly announced refunds, delisting, etc. but I am still thoroughly enjoying myself.

Taking it slow. Spending most of my time doing gigs and side missions. 15-ish hours in I think? Still find myself often stopping to just enjoy the scenery. The world map is just so nuts and the fact that you have little stories, including voice acting, for many/most of the side missions really helps.

I have seen a few people say that they feel like the main story does not have a lot of "weight", that it feels kind of empty in terms of impact. I think I can kind of see that but I think I need to progress a bit farther first before I can really comment on this.

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I've been thoroughly enjoying myself.  I have a few gigs and side missions that refuse to complete, and I've run into a couple issues regarding subtitles that stay on screen (easy fix just toggle subtitles on/off).  Other than that the game has been running and playing well.  I did have to relent and turn off RTX, I would love to keep it on but it's just a bit too much of a resource hog to be worth it for moment to moment gameplay. 

The world is still fantastic.  There are times I prefer to walk or drive instead of fast travel because taking in the scenery is really enjoyable.  The witcher series never quite managed that, although there were cool one off moments that came very close. 

I'm following in the tradition of the skyrim memes about stealth archer builds and sticking pretty seriously to a stealth pistol build.  I've also put some serious points into net-running, but I do think the hacking mini-game is kinda meh.  I might try doing a full respec into blades or something silly once I've sunk some more time with the game.

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