Gamers' long wait to finally explore Night City in Cyberpunk 2077 has almost come to an end — even if it just got a little bit longer.
The dystopian role-playing game will arrive before 2020 is up and will let gamers set off on their unique, debaucherous adventures through a vast, crime-riddled city inspired by decades of science fiction literature and cinema.
Cyberpunk 2077 will be developer CD Projekt Red's latest monumental undertaking since the 2015 release of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt and the company isn't cutting any corners when it comes to delivering a next-generation RPG experience. The title will attempt to redefine the genre with a mind-boggling amount of character customization options, countless dialog opportunities that will make every playthrough different, an expansive open-world map, and of course, the inclusion of Keanu Reeves in the supporting cast.
CDPR began work on Cyberpunk 2077 as far back as 2013 but even with a seven-year lead-up, putting the finishing touches on such a gargantuan project has led to a handful of delays, and now a period of "forced crunch" for the development team.
When is the Cyberpunk 2077 release date?
Few games have endured more release date delays than Cyberpunk 2077, and the latest came on October 27 when CD Projekt Red announced that they were delaying the game three weeks from the November 18, 2020 date to December 10, 2020. The announcement — like the previous delays — came as part of a lengthy note published to the game's official Twitter account.
"The biggest challenge right now is shopping the game on current-gen, next-gen, and PC at the same time, which requires us to prepare and test 9 versions of it," the post reads. "Since Cyberpunk 2077 evolved towards almost being a next-gen title somewhere along the way, we need to make sure everything works well and every version runs smoothly."
Despite the fact that the game went "gold" on October 5, meaning that the game was more or less complete, there's still more work to be done. In theory, those three weeks should allow the team to finalize the game via a Day 0 patch.
This is now the third major delay to face the game.
The game was originally slated for release on April 16, but that was delayed to September 17 in January to give the developer more time to fully polish the title. CDPR then announced on June 18 that Cyberpunk 2077 would be pushed back to November 18.
Bloomberg's Jason Schreier reported in September that CDPR developers had been ordered to prepare for 6-day weeks as Cyberpunk 2077 entered its final period of development. Mandatory overtime has become a controversial trend among AAA video game studios as titles become more ambitious and excruciatingly detailed. And on the same day CDPR announced the latest delay, Schreier tweeted that one dev privately revealed they worked a 100-hour workweek on the game.
Studio head Adam Badowski tweeted in response to Schreier's September claims that everyone on the team will be compensated for their overtime (which isn't always guaranteed for salaried employees of other studios) and that the Cyberpunk 2077 team will get an evenly distributed cut of 10 percent of CDPR's annual profit.
The decision to mandate crunch drew criticism across the board since the company had promised employees this wouldn't earlier in the game's development cycle. Cyberpunk 2077 is the latest example of how the game industry is balancing the exorbitant time needed to develop next-gen games and the well-being of their employees.
What is Cyberpunk 2077?
First revealed to the public in 2013, Cyberpunk 2077 is a sprawling science fiction RPG that will be released for PCs and consoles in 2020. Based on the 1988 tabletop game Cyberpunk 2020, the game takes place in a near-future dystopia where body modifications are common and crime runs rampant.
Cyberpunk 2077 takes place in Night City, a crime-ridden city in the Free State of California. Players take control of "V," a mercenary deeply embedded in the underworld of Night City. "V" is customizable to the player's choosing, allowing them to be any gender and have any skin tone. Their backgrounds and combat styles are also up to the player's preference, from brute force strength or crippling the advantage of opponents with advanced hacking.
It was at Xbox’s E3 2019 presentation where CDPR unveiled the game's most prolific cast member: Keanu Reeves. As the mysterious "Johnny Silverhand," a hard rocker for the fictional band SAMURAI, Johnny Silverhand helps V accomplish their quests but has his own agenda as well.
Below is the official synopsis for Cyberpunk 2077 via the game’s website:
“Cyberpunk 2077 is an open-world, action-adventure story set in Night City, a megalopolis obsessed with power, glamour and body modification. You play as V, a mercenary outlaw going after a one-of-a-kind implant that is the key to immortality. You can customize your character’s cyberware, skillset and playstyle, and explore a vast city where the choices you make shape the story and the world around you.”
In an August 2019 "Deep Dive" video on YouTube, the game's creators said: "In the world of Cyberpunk, few things go as planned. Every decision you make will have consequences. Your choices will shape how the world reacts to you and affect your relationships with those around you."
What consoles will Cyberpunk 2077 be available on?
The game will launch on PC, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and on the Google game streaming platform, Stadia.
Microsoft announced that Cyberpunk 2077 will also be playable on the Xbox Series X on the console’s release date sometime in November. This is thanks to the Series X’s Smart Delivery feature that lets gamers seamlessly play specific games they’ve purchased on the Xbox One on the Series X. But Cyberpunk’s relationship with the PS5 is a bit murkier.
Sony unveiled what the PS5 will look like and showcase an early roster of exclusive games for the next-generation console, but Cyberpunk 2077 was never mentioned. Eurogamer reported that Sony has told its developers that any game submitted to launch on the PS4 by July 13 must also be compatible on the PS5. Since Cyberpunk 2077’s release date is now in September, this would apply to CDRP.
But with no confirmation from the developer or Sony, Keanu Reeves’ future on the PS5 is up in the air.
What are the Cyberpunk 2077 PC minimum system requirements?
Here are two breakdowns of the PC rig you'll need to simple run the Cypberpunk 2077 and another one that CD Projekt Red recommends to get the most out of the upcoming title.
Minimum System Requirements:
- OS: 64-Bit Windows 7 or 64-Bit 10
- DirectX Version: DirectX 12
- Processor: Intel Core i5-3570K or AMD FX-8310
- Memory: 8 GB RAM
- Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 or AMD Radeon RX 470
- Storage: 70 GB HDD (SSD recommended)
Recommended System Requirements:
- OS: 64-Bit Windows 10
- DirectX Version: DirectX 12
- Processor: Intel Core i7-4790 or AMD Ryzen 3 3200G
- Memory: 12 GB RAM
- Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 or AMD Radeon R9 Fury
- Storage: 70 GB SSD
What regions of Cyberpunk 2077 can I explore?
There are several regions in Night City you can explore as you continue through the game. Those regions are:
- Westbrook: A tourist-oriented Japantown, Westbrook is for the wealthy who like to play as hard as they work.
- Heywood: A massive suburban district. To live here means you've made it, but that doesn't mean you've escaped the darkness that lurks in Night City.
- Pacifica: Abandoned, crumbling, and overrun with gang activity, Pacifica is the textbook definition of impoverished. It was once primed to be a lavish tourist center, but as corporations pulled out, the neighborhood was left unfinished. Towering, incomplete skyscrapers are now home to all sorts of nefarious activity.
- Santo Domingo: All of Night City is powered from here, with its power plants and industrial factories.
- Watson: A uniquely Asian-centered location, cultures mix here with markets, bazaars, and plenty of alleyways to get lost in.
- City Center: Where it all happens in Night City. This is where all of the corporations are located and there’s plenty of neon and luxury to lure you in.
- The Badlands: Venture beyond Night City and you’ll find yourself in the Badlands, where the remnants of the past lie buried in dirt. Beware the Nomads who roam in dangerous vehicles across the Badlands.
What are the gangs of Night City in Cyberpunk 2077?
On Twitter, CDRP introduced the gangs and factions of Night City in a series of tweets. The lot of them are characterized by specific ethnicities and use of specific enhancements. Thus far, a handful have been revealed and with more likely on the way.
- Tyger Claws: A Japanese gang who are "ruthless and violent in practice, and intimidating in appearance. Katanas, street bikes, and luminous tattoos are their trademarks."
- Kang-Tao: A Chinese corporation "specializing in smart-gun technology and security services." One of the few gangs to have government backing.
- Valentinos: One of Night City's largest, Valentinos are characterized by "a strong moral code and century-old traditions." They control predominantly Latinx areas of Heywood.
- Animals: An "aggressive" street fighter gang in Pacifica that choose natural, animal supplements over cyberware. "They’re animalistic at heart, and dangerously proud of who they are."
CDRP hosted a Night City Wire showcase on September 18 where it gave gamers a details look at each of the game's factions and the work that went into designing them. Watch the update below.
Where can I watch the Cyberpunk 2077 trailer?
Several trailers for the game are available to watch online.
One is a video titled “Deep Dive,” a 14-minute exploration of a single mission players can complete in the game. CDPR warns the video contains light spoilers. You can watch it below.
A year later at E3 2019, CDPR released a new trailer emphasizing the game's story. The end of the trailer revealed Keanu Reeves as Johnny, who acts as the player's guide — and possible enemy — and exists only in V's brain chips.
What will Cyberpunk 2077 gameplay be like?
If cinematics and lore aren't enough for you, don't worry.
CDPR released two new gameplay trailers on June 25. The first is titled "The Gig," which showcases some of Cyperpunk 2077's prologue that revealed the opening scenes of the game will feature V (players' custom character) wrapped up in a heist for a bio-chip that doesn't exactly go according to plan.
The second is a much lengthier gameplay snippet that shows off "braindance" gameplay. This futuristic technology lets players jack into other characters' memories and analyze their past actions to gather clues and insights on other inhabitants of Night City.
CDPR hasn't confirmed anything yet, but there's a hint in the trailer that suggests players will be able to braindance into Keanu Reeves' head.
During E3 2018, CDPR debuted a 48-minute gameplay demo, which you can watch below. This was still early days for the game so it has likely undergone significant changes from its premiere nearly two years ago, but it is the longest single look at the game at the moment.
What kind of customization should I expect in Cyberpunk 2077?
Cyberpunk 2077 will offer players a level of customization never before seen in other RPGs. Certain game publications and content creators have received hands-on time with the early hours of CDPR's upcoming title and have confirmed that the introductory character customization menu comes with an endless array of options.
Kotaku listed out all of the body and face customizations that will be available to gamers:
- 6 skin types
- 35 hairstyles
- 17 eye types
- 8 eyebrows, 17 mouths
- 17 jaws
- 17 ears
- 8 bits of "cyberware" and the option to not dawn any
- 8 types of scars
- 6 types of face tattoos
- 11 piercings
- 5 types of teeth
- 8 eye make up options
- 5 lip makeup options
- 3 blemishes
- 3 types of nipples
- 5 types of body tattoos
- 2 types of body scars
But that's not all. Players will even be able to customize the size, shape, and hairiness of their genitals.
There will be 2 types of penises with varying size options, 1 vagina option, and 5 types of pubic hair to choose from.
What other features can I expect in Cyberpunk 2077?
Cyberpunk 2077 is all about freedom of choice afforded to players. From the making of V to the branching narrative that unfolds based on specific choices, the world of Cyberpunk 2077 is a techno-oyster.
In addition to V's appearance, players can tweak V’s personality and abilities. Because it's based on a tabletop RPG game, players are able to improve stats such as Strength, Constitution, Intelligence, Reflexes, Tech, and Cool. Changing these aspects of V will change how NPCs (non-playable characters) react towards V.
There will also be an option for getting V in romantic relationships. Quest designer Patrick Mills had this to say about CDPR’s approach to letting V fall in love during an interview with Game Informer:
“You’re defining your own character here, which means defining their sexuality any way you want. With Geralt [in The Witcher], you had a character whose sexuality was very well defined by the novels and the short stories and the previous games. But in this one, it’s up to you to decide. We’ve got NPCs that are gay, we’ve got NPCs that are bi, we’ve got NPCs that are straight, because we want them to feel real and that they have preferences as well.”
What is the Cyberpunk 2077 rating?
CDPR has never shied away from making its games as horny, grizzly, and crass as humanity possible with titles like The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, and Cyberpunk 2077 is proving to be no different.
It narrowly dodged the dreaded "AO for Adult Only" rating from the ESRB and was instead was rated "M for Mature" in May. But don't worry, it won't be lacking any explicit scenes.
In Brazil, the country's game rating board classified the game as "18+," with a laundry list of things that gave the game such a rating. The rating included items like "Description of consume of illicit drugs," "Foul language," "Description of illicit drug consumption or trafficking," "Sexual exploitation," "Nudity," "Prostitution," "Mutilation," "Intense sexual relation," "Cruelty," and of course, "Blood." And there's still more. All in all, sounds like a good time!
In response, the game's lead quest designer Pawel Sasko tweeted, "You surprised? We don't fuck around."
What's the significance of music in Cyberpunk 2077?
Music plays a significant part of the Cyberpunk 2077 experience. Real-world musicians Run the Jewels, Grimes, A$AP Rocky, Ilan Rubin, Deadly Hunta, Gazelle Twin, Tina Guo, Rat Boy, Refused, and more all contribute original music that create the sonic world of Night City.
At the 2019 Game Awards, Grimes debuted her song "4ÆM," made exclusive for Cyberpunk 2077. Like Reeves, Grimes also plays a character in Cyberpunk 2077 as a pop star who died and came back to "life" as a cyborg.
Cyberpunk 2077 will be released November 18, 2020 for Xbox One, PS4, PC, and Google Stadia.