The time has come for the most anticipated review of 2020! Cyberpunk 2077 was finally released in the open arms of us gamers! But has CD Project Red managed to live up to the expectations of gamers? Or did they make mistakes? Is it worth it for you to buy this game? Well, let’s say it’s a complicated answer. But we will do our best to help you with that decision. Buckle up, fellow RPG / Action fans.
We played Cyberpunk 2077 for 23 hours on Xbox series X and PC!
What we liked!
- Next-gen: This must be the most significant point. Cyberpunk is not officially a next-gen product. It does undoubtedly perform that way on next-gen. Al from non-existing loading times to immense detail everywhere you look. The game feels made for this type of hardware! And there won’t be a single gamer who will argue with that. Most of the review will be written from a player’s standpoint on an Xbox series X, but we will talk about my PC experience as well.
- Storyline: The first thing you will notice while playing Cyberpunk, no matter the life path you choose, is that the story is dense. You get thrown into the life of V and experience his/her life, starting from a certain point. And (spoiler warning) it will be a whole roller coaster, to be fair! You will even experience being killed but magically revive—an experience like no other.
- Personal movie: To further enhance the last point, the story is brought in a way that feels like watching an interactive movie brought with intense care. Each action you take influences the further progression of your own personal film. You don’t even have to finish the movie! Hence you can actually complete the game without following the main storyline!
- Graphics: The graphics are extraordinary. Everywhere you look, you will notice unexpected details. But it feels as if most of the graphical performance was put in the game’s early stages. Not saying it gets worse at all, but NPC’s you meet later in the game have less finished lip-syncing. If you do look past that, though, it’s just one big eye candy. Jackie looks like a friend I could meet in a dream. The ripper doc even made me shiver from fear! It is actually surprising that a game like this could be made today. But the people at CD Project Red want to show us that the future is here today.
- Actual fight scenes: Once you get to the part where you can wield your mighty weapons whenever you wish to, then you are set for life! And I am not joking about that. If you bought Cyberpunk and expected to have a heap load of amazing fighting? Then you were right. (eventually, but more on that later, though). Gun handling feels excellent. Aiming is responsive, looks realistic, and has a satisfying feeling to it. And I must say, Cyberpunk is one of the few shooter games where I found myself holding katanas as a backup weapon, just for enjoyment. Not because it is OP, but only because this is the feeling I was looking for in other games: Charging at your enemy, and slicing them up, and winning. But if you are not the biggest fan of “bringing a knife to a gunfight,” Cyberpunk got you covered too.
- Regular patches: One thing that showed the devotion of CD Project Red even more than the actual release is the patches. The team faced insanely harsh feedback and obstacles but push through with this Huge gem. As with many games, many bugs are found that could negatively impact player experience, and this isn’t any different here. The game has received countless bug fixes in less than a month. And I must say I am just genuinely impressed by this.
- Choose your style: Probably an underrated part about the game is that you can play it how YOU like it. People could classify me as reckless, and my girlfriend even calls me a bit too YOLO. I tend to overstep my limits and see how far I can go. So I choose to be a melee master and wield my Katana with pride. And you can do that! Not the whole time (at least not at the start), since you will need to swap between weapons to clear a larger group of enemies. Also, the people that enjoy stealth can rest assured that there are many options for them in the game. You can hack cameras, visors, enemies, … close to everything actually. And if you point enough points into this, you can complete entire scenes without shooting or slicing! It really makes you feel free and unrestricted.
- Build-up speed: We were promised an action-packed game. And I must say, I almost quit the game if I weren’t reviewing it. The first few hours are really filled with story and dialogue. You will barely get to shoot a gun or drive a car at all. But once you get past that, shit hits the fan, and you get action galore! But knowing that you can only refund a game if you haven’t played it for X amount of hours makes this a slightly dangerous move.
What we disliked
- Loading bugs: One of my biggest disappointments about Cyberpunk is that I had issues with loading sequences. No, it’s not that it broke the game, but I kept running onto these issues that were the following: Walk towards a certain point to trigger the next steps in your story. But I was skipping dialogues from time to time or sprinting, and nothing starts. I eighter had to wait for the other NPC, which took 1 minute or had to walk around a few times, walk out of the area, and back in, to trigger a dialogue. It didn’t happen often, but it happened enough to bother me. While playing, if you think you are in the right location, nothing is happening, walk back a few meters, and try again. True IT fashion.
- Performance on older hardware + Sony’s actions: This is where it’s at. If you have an older setup that isn’t from 2019 or later, you should not buy this game. It will run, but it won’t be a fairy tale. If you are willing to buckle up with the possible bugs, then you can. But Cyberpunk should have been released as a Next-Gen exclusive only. People felt so freaking ripped off, and so did I while trying it on my computer (it ran decently well, though on my GTX1080). Since my Xbox series X was just crushing the result of my PC. There is something with these newer cards that makes it run so much better. But to take the Sony approach and remove Cyberpunk from their whole store was a bit too harsh. The developers must be heartbroken by this because it clearly got pushed due to investors.
- Driving: When I saw my dope car for V, I couldn’t wait to push the button to enter that gorgeous vehicle. But the man was displeased with the feeling that driving brings. It just does not feel rewarding or cool. I tried first person, close camera, and far, and must say, I just used far, and tried to think about something else. If I compare it to driving around in GTA, this is an overseen part of the enjoyment. I enjoy car-focused trips but disliked every travel with them. They look fantastic, though, but don’t handle them in a way that I enjoy.
- Weapon ammunition: Last remark, but actually a significant mention. What the heck is up with the ammo system. If I have a submachine gun and pick up the exact same machine gun but lower specs, I would expect it to be converted into ammunition? But it doesn’t. I have to pause multiple times mid-fight to swap guns in my inventory to still have ammo. They could have made a system where your ammo will transfer over if you keep the same gun glass. It could function like “primary ammo” and “special ammo” for shotguns—just as in Destiny 2. But no, there isn’t a system like this. It is a real frustrating mechanic and tends to take me away from the flow of the game.
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