Cyberpunk 2077 – A postmortem of 2021's biggest game

After years of uncontrolled hype public opinion has now turn to hate but is Cyberpunk 2077 as bad as people say?

Introduction – 0:00
Part One: Spider Swarms – 09:14
Part Two: Of RPGs and Witchers – 16:57
Part Three: One game to rule them all – 43:06
Part Four: Looking for a story to save me – 1:13:58
Conclusion – 1:38:13

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Cyberpunk 2077 – A postmortem of 2021's biggest game

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Comment (42)

  1. i have to really disagree with you in the story department. cyberpunk 2077 lacks any form of substance that makes a game or story entertaining let alone something that takes place in the cyberpunk genre. it may be cyberpunk in looks but not in the story. it’s a power fantasy in a genre that doesn’t facilitate that type of narrative and regardless of how “cool” it is, it misses the point of its source material. cyberpunk is a more personal narrative in a setting that’s meant to consume the individual whole. essentially it’s man living against the world he was born in to. so when v walks in and is just the coolest guy around who kills thousands of dangerous gang members and topples a megacorp, it completely goes against the core themes of the genre. granted many books, films and games in the genre take different routes and do things differently but the feel of the world and themes are largely the same. yet no amount of suspension of disbelief can prop up the illusion that this game is cyberpunk in narrative, and not just an action movie from the 80s. hell even those had some enjoyable camp to them. 2077 lacks even a basic schlock entertainment value. it’s not like it has to be the next neuromancer or deus ex but it can certainly be more than a shallow roller coaster ride through the cyberpunk tropes webpage.

  2. On that complaint you had about the loot game. There's a perk that disassembles LL of the junk you pick up for you to be used for crafting. Then with the whole number game with wearable loot. 👏🏼MAKE👏🏼USE👏🏼OF👏🏼CRAFTING👏🏼 and set a self imposed rule to only put on new gear if you like the look of it then disassemble all the rest of the gear your not wearing to be used to upgrade your gear! The system ain't broken, you just aren't engaging with it in a meaning ful way 😁

    Also doing this makes the game a bit more challenging if your breezing through it

  3. A really old quote from the legend, Sid Meier: I call it the "Covert Action Rule". Don't try to do too many games in one package. And that's actually done me a lot of good. You can look at the games I've done since Civilization, and there's always opportunities to throw in more stuff. When two units get together in Civilization and have a battle, why don't we drop out to a war game and spend ten minutes or so in duking out this battle? Well, the Covert Action Rule. Focus on what the game is.

  4. Funny how one can replace almost every single "hype" u say with "lies" in this videos…

    Jokes aside, is a bit naive to think that the developers tried to do what gamers wanned or hoped(the one game) for this game; a GDD(the equivalent to a movie pre-production) is done way before a project undergoes production or marketing; the only games that can bend to the will of the players are the ones that are undergoing production like early-access or live services. The point here is that no matter the hype or the expectations people had for this game, most of the criticism its getting about lacking features were either confirmed, promised or shown by the developers in early stages of the game therefore its all on their backs not the hype.(i know my english sucks, not first langague)

  5. But is even Witcher 3 actually an RPG? I''d say it's a story-driven open world action adventure, but the genre RPG in Video Games is so loose that it's hard to say.
    In all seriousness though, I think the whole "It's not an RPG" is just a very simplified and knee-jerk reaction that actually means "It's not the RPG they said for years it would be". They sold us an idea way closer to New Vegas than Witcher, and didn't actually deliver that idea, so I think the disappointment with the RPG aspect of the game comes mostly from that (For people that actually played the game, and actually care at all about that). "Deep triple A RPGs are dead"… We mostly know that, and for many I believe the fact that CDPR sold the idea that they would bring them back, all the way up to release, is what actually made us hopeful only to be disappointed.

  6. Funnily, enough, this reminds me of the Assassin's Creed Unity fiasco a couple years ago : a game with many qualities, which had a rushed release to come out before Christmas, was rightfully criticized for being riddled with bugs, but will still end up being played in a few years long after most of the bugs have been fixed and the outcry has died down.

  7. I said CP 2077 is not an RPG. I neither bought or played any of the Witcher games because I knew they aren't RPG's either. I have been playing games on computers since the 80's and most of the text based adventures of that era are better RPG's than these new games. Quite boring being text only, but at least you had real choices and did not have to play out a prewritten story. I find it offensive that a Corpo V, who once was engaging in espionage with Arasoka gets excited by a gig offered by Dexter Deshawn. And the whole crying for Vic to save him is the only option. Why can't I be streetkid tough and say hope I get a chance to make the most of what I have left? Nope, only option is cry and whimper to Vic. Or the many times my only choice in a start up dialog with a new NPC was "whoa, whoa, whoa, hold on there". How about let me say "who the F do you think you are?" to this new NPC. More than half the choices lead to the same exact dialogs with the same exact outcomes. All of this is not to say that CP 2077 doesn't have potential. I just think people that think it is good as it is are fing nuts and are the reason the bar is so damned low. People need to stop calling semi-interactive storybooks RPG's. I did like the characters in CP 2077. It felt semi immersive the first time playing it. But I had to accept that the character I was "role playing" was always going to be the same character to "role play" and that I did not have a choice in how to "role play" it. For reference the game to me was a xmas gift. I had some fun with it but will set it down now and hope in maybe 6 months to a year it'll be worth trying again.

  8. Dude c'mon now. Of course The Witcher was a shallow RPG. It's literally based on a pre-written character in a book series. They're limited on how much freedom it's allowed based on that alone. Cyberpunk is based on a TABLETOP RPG with limitless customization and role playing options. Saying we shouldn't be surprised it's shallow is ignorant. Blame the studio for making false promises. This is a weak analysis and I don't even like the game.

  9. Glad someone brings up the disconnect between the core narrative's urgency and the side content, and I would argue this was a major problem in Witcher 3 too. When is the side content justifiably narratively sound? It could be done before the failed heist, but then Jackie is sat at the bottom of V's building eating noodles, it would be rude to leave him hanging while you clear the map of side content. Witcher had the same problem, why would Geralt be killing monsters and exploring while his 'daughter' is in dire need of his help? CDPR create viable side content for the character, be that monster hunting, or merc work, but then diffuse that with the urgency they set in the core narrative. Compare this to AC: Odyssey for example, Kassandra/Alexios is rarely given specific time limits and is usually told to meet someone when they get the chance, meaning the merc work that can be carried out feels appropriate as there is little to no urgency in the core narrative. This creates its own issues with the main story being often too segmented, but it works better in a role-playing sense. Cyberpunk and Witcher 3 seem to have linear designed main narratives in a open-world setting, which is problematic.

    PS: I also thought about side content after completing the main story, but V is still dying and having become a legend, why would V be doing low-grade merc work? There too there is a disconnect. Likewise, Geralt is supposed to 'retire', so him going of to do full-time monster hunting makes little sense too.

  10. So, what I think you are missing, or haven't gotten to yet, is the reason why people say this isn't an RPG/is a lesser RPG is because of "seemingly" meaningful dialogue options. Not that the game fails as an RPG in gameplay, but in story. People are used to options that at least seem like they mean something in the end. Mass Effect, The Witcher, Dragon Age, and maybe even Skyrim. There are many different outcomes for smaller missions and in some, the smaller missions can change how the ending is perceived. But not so in this game. It really feels like the only options worth a damn in Cyberpunk are the options that change the ending which basically happen all at the end. That majority of you golden/orange options in 77 feel like they don't really mean much. Maybe that isn't true, maybe it is. But it does FEEL like they mean less in this game.

  11. Regarding performance:
    The game obviously targets 30fps like any other RPG in the last 2 decades. That people play it as a twitch shooter and then complain that their crap pc doesn't handle it in 60fps – I don't think it's valid.
    The last gen consoles are three generations of CPUs behind at this point – so the developers chose to allow the CPU to lag way behind to not impede frame rates – obviously that's a system that is easy to break. Like driving into a body that only spawns seconds later in the physics process.
    I think the game was never meant to run on current/last gen consoles on release, but the corpos wanted so.
    On the bright side – unreal 5 inherently takes care of many of the pain points of making a game like this, so we will see more spectacular games soon.

  12. Geralt feels more like a custom character than V does IMO. Sure, your only options are options that Geralt would do but they are so varied and different. So many things just seem set in stone with V no matter what options you pick. Geralt's journey ends pretty differently depending on how you play it. With V it doesn't matter. There is one final outcome V can't avoid. He can accept it now or in six months. Kinda feels like the majority of the endings don't matter at that point.

  13. I have to admit. I played the Witcher Wild Hunt in PS4 and it felt terrible and totally outdated. Never thought about it as beeing realy good. So i did not believe the hype for CP. But anyway i was upset that i could Not play it due to the broken quest system. Main Story was not working for me till Update 1.6. The World mechanics are super bad technically and as a programmer myself i am disapointed of that stupid way to set things up in 2020. There must have been just a minor group of programmers and a hundret people making animations and graphic. Totally missbalanced. The core game is from 2005.

  14. Nah, my basic complaint (and this has been going on for long now, to the point that it tired me) is.. why just 1st person view? why cant player have choice for 3rd person view, when you can even select the size of your dong?. Is that request obnoxious? You tell me.. nice analysis though.

  15. I would be very interested in your opinions on first two Gothic games and the first Guild Wars game. Seems to me you could produce amazing videos on them given how you approach things.

  16. I thought Cyberpunk 2077 was an amazing game within just the 1st 20 hours of gaming; granted, I was playing on a high end PC. That being said, I am sure we all think that CDPR advertising the game on consoles was a BIG MISTAKE and they payed for it quit dearly as everyone can see; and that is part of the reason it is getting hated (along side the false promises ofc). I also think that investors and stock holders created a propaganda (search that word up if you are not sure what it means) to decrease the value of CDPR and buy its stocks when it is low. It is pretty smart if you think about it since they could easily quadruple their investment in no time at all.

  17. This was a really weird and cherry picked review. Especially the comparisons with Witcher 3, which were all designed to be "gotcha" moments where you attempted to reveal some hypocrisy within the viewers for not liking Cyberpunk as much as Witcher 3. The whole comparison revolves around which one is a deeper rpg even though Witcher 3 never claims to be a deep rpg. You admit at multiple points that Cyberpunk wins some points by your definition of the round even though the execution is poor. You are talking about extremely subjective topics but then using a method of tallying points which portrays your arguments as objective.

    The whole story section barely touches the main character of the game and instead focuses on Johhny Silverhand, who you claim to be incredibly unique in gaming, even though CDPR literally used the same concept with Vlodimir in Hearts of Stone. The comparisons to Witcher 3 only happens where you know Cyberpunk will have the upper hand by your own metrics and never happens when it would be a massive blowout against Cyberpunk. The entire section about the shallowness of the world had no comparisons to Wticher 3's world, which was incredibly lived in and full of details, conversations, npcs with life cycles, fantastic design and atmosphere. You also somehow managed to frame the Bloody Baron having redeeming qualities to be a downside in comparison to Johhny Silverhand.

    Negatives of the game were sprinkled into few sentences and distributed throughout the review. They were often framed as superficial and unimportant, not worthy of spending time in the review. Your review portrays the game to have many minor flaws that will be ironed out over time even though there are many core issues with the gameplay that would require complete overhauls of many of it's systems. People's expectations were shaped by the company that made and marketed the game. Your picks of random "fan comments" to prove points and win arguments were cheap and had no substance.

  18. I don't think reducing the question of whether it's enough of an RPG to a handful of arbitrary categories and comparing it just to The Witcher 3 is particularly fair or convincing. You admit that the life path options are disappointing and add virtually nothing to the experience, but because The Witcher 3 doesn't have something directly comparable and better you award equal credit for that as the degree to which all the actual quest content in the game offers meaningful player choice. For me, that single 'category' (which you correctly award to TW3) is actually the primary thing I care about when discussing whether a game lives up to its billing as an RPG.

    Given that a lot of the traditional RPG progression and itemization systems have become nearly universal across all genres at this point (even most multiplayer FPSes feature extensive character loadouts and some form of grindy level-up system or similar progression mechanic these days), I think what makes a game a "good role playing game" these days is that it allows you to play the role of a compelling character who gets to make meaningful choices that impact the story and setting of the game. You seem to agree that Cyberpunk not only fails to stack up to The Witcher in those regards, but that it just doesn't do those things terribly well. V does not have an interesting predefined backstory and personality like Geralt, and you aren't offered many opportunities to craft one of your own. Only a few missions even have significant choices in how to complete them and virtually none of those choices have any lasting impact beyond a few minor dialog changes later on. If having lots of perks and item slots is enough to outweigh those things for you, fair enough I guess, but it seems more than a little disingenuous to say complaints about the degree to which the game feels like an RPG are just a meme born out of unreasonable expectations.

  19. Excellent view point. I agree with most points you make. Combat in a none turn based RPG is always dodgy at the start where weapons don't work properly (headshots with guns, sharp swords etc) so I didn't expect Far Cry type gun-fare, but about level 5+ it starts to feel good, whatever build you go for. I did have much lower expectations though, as I hoped just for a better Fallout 4 with cars and no nukes… and it is much better than that!
    Bug wise, I'm on a 1080ti PC and I've had one hard crash and a few irritating times like where I can't draw weapons or sometimes even move, keyboard or pad, but a quick reload later and it's all fine.

    The game itself is plain old unfinished, as I see lots of place makers in text of many objects in the world, for example, scan a door and it doesn't say "door" but have some _game world hash code (happens sometimes in the inventory too, with code appearing instead of item names) and various other obviously not finished things, like no glass breaking SFX, or a noise when you craft something, etc. Or the horrible bug with clothes shops and legendary specs (don't go to any clothes shops, even to browse, unless you intend to buy, and even then, save spam before you go in, so you can at least buy the 5 L/specs each shop should sell, cuz they will never sell them again in that playthrough, apart from the first time you visit), or the fact that if you want the best gear, DON'T pick it up/craft any of it until you are at a comfy level as pick ups level with you, regardless of quality (pick up a legendary gun at level 10 and you find the same rare variant at level 30, the rare one will be better, sans mods), Yes you can upgrade, but only so much and it's definitely not cost effective, although this is just bad design.

    Also yes, it's badly paced, based on the simple fact that the in game story gives you a time limit that it no way enforces, and the starting 6 month montage should have been 3-5 mini missions (It was the 3rd partial playthrough before I realised who Jackie's mum was… or that I'd even met Padre, or anyone for that matter ffs). TW3 I feel actually does this right, or at least better, as you're not looking for Ciri at the start, you looking for Yen, so there isn't that much at stake until the BB, and even then, afterward there is a break in the narrative so you can go off and do side quest 'n stuff. But this I feel is a problem with game narratives in general. Your character is always "The Dragon Born", where as I would like that part of the game revealed later. If I have to compare it to R*, RDR 2 works narratively because there aren't any real stakes until quite late. There are urgent missions, but there is also a lot of down time, something I think this game could have benefited from. Same stakes as it has, just remove the false time limit.

    Other than that, I quite like it. I would advise all players to start on hard though.

  20. The looting thing is absurd. The enemies you kill have extraordinary sophisticated technology you could pill for but instead you're picking up ashtrays. The player behaves like a scavenger in a post-apocalypse, not some cool merc in a high-tech dystopia.

  21. Also, what is weird “people have chosen this game to be the Messiah” angle that you keep pushing? It was a product that was marketed a certain way. Go back and take a look through all these Night City Wires, various dev interviews, puff pieces and so on. It’s very easy to see how CDPR intentionally made people believe that this game would have absolutely everything in it, and it would be the best at everything — I mean, shit, there are literally devs and employees on record boasting about their amazing AI, hand-crafted amazing world with garbage placed in bins by hand, and so on. Putting the blame on consumers and not on CDPR for misrepresenting their game — again, intentionally, just as they did with banning own review footage, withholding the game until just a couple of days pre-launch, and deliberately hiding the truth about console issues — is just a legitimately weird take. It really seems like you’re trying to take on some RPG-misunderstanding, all-wanting, never-satisfied “gamer” strawman that you have created in your head and ignoring the very simple truth (although you did happen to mention this in your prologue): CDPR, despite all its inflated valuations, is still just a small-time studio that was utterly incapable of handling a proper AAA game. And when they found out that they shit the bed (and this was likely long before release date), they started lying and covering it up, promising the moon to sell those preorders and hype up their stock (one of the founders dumped it right before release — I’m sure many senior devs and PMs did the same).


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