Long-awaited game “Cyberpunk 2077” hits store shelves


Courtesy of indianexpress.com

Announced back in 2012, the highly anticipated title finally released today after a year filled with delays.

The CD Projekt Red game, releasing on both current and next-gen consoles as well as of course on PC, was originally scheduled for release on April 16. Since that announcement at E3 2019, “Cyberpunk 2077” has been delayed three more times, at first from April to September, then to November, and finally settling on today, Dec. 10.

The aforementioned studio behind the game is probably best known for its acclaimed “The Witcher” series, the third installment of which was the recipient of many Game of the Year awards and still stands as a favorite among all kinds of gamers along the spectrum—a rare point of agreement in what is otherwise a deeply opinionated, and some may say divided, subculture.

Even I, a fan of largely story-based, stealth games, consider “The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt” as one of my top ten games of all time.

If the studio’s prior works aren’t enough to garner confidence in what may be, given a couple days’ play time, universally considered another innovative masterpiece, then their history of consumer-friendly business practices will. Free add-ons, DLC priced at under $20 with a full game’s worth of content and a physically packed game box are all aspects of CD Projekt’s proven quality.

The casting of Hollywood darling Keanu Reeves is also a choice sure to draw attention to what’s promised to be a deep Role-Playing Game experience, a genre that may otherwise appeal to a smaller, more hardcore audience. The actor’s appearance at E3 last year launched his status as Internet legend, or perhaps just strengthened it, with the now oft-quoted “you’re breathtaking” line a bona fide meme.

This monumental moment in gaming, as I’m sure it will be seen regardless of “Cyberpunk 2077’s” reception, did come at some cost, though, and I’m not talking about the MSRP. Allegations of crunch culture have been levied like a torrent for a few years now, with studios like Rockstar (“Grand Theft Auto” and “Red Dead Redemption” series) and Naughty Dog (“Uncharted” and “The Last of Us” series) coming under much-publicized fire for their exploitation of labor. CD Projekt Red is among the most recent purveyors of this troubling practice, and it’s truly a shame that the studio’s respect for gamers doesn’t extend to its workforce too.

Despite this—or possibly, uncomfortably, due to—this culture of crunch, “Cyberpunk 2077” promises to be a fun, deep and polished experience, with other adjectives including complex, expansive and long describing the game as well. Of course, the same was said about “The Last of Us: Part 2” prior to its release, and widely acclaimed it was not.

I for one am very much looking forward to tearing through Night City and discovering what’s assuredly going to be the most talked about game of the year, especially since its enormity in the industry has pushed much of its potential competition into 2021. No matter the reviews that will be released later in the week, or have already come out due to the game’s embargo date of Dec. 7, I look forward to being a part of such a significant occasion as this.