Cyberpunk’s A ‘Sandbox,’ But What Does That Mean?

By Nathan Grayson on October 23rd, 2012 at 9:00 pm.

Sanboxes are tricky things. I mean, the label’s shared by Grand Theft Auto, Skyrim, Just Cause 2, and Mount and Blade – among zillions of others – but it means very different things in all of those cases. I was recently informed that it can also refer to a box full of sand, which isn’t a videogame at all but instead some kind of devilishly effective trap for children. So when CD Projekt Red started throwing the phrase around in relation to the decidedly de-witched Cyberpunk 2077, I couldn’t help but wonder exactly what it meant. Fortunately, CDP detected the fluctuation in my neural implant and acted accordingly. By which I mean it answered my question – and also filled in a few blanks about the magnitude of Cyberpunk’s choices, how close it’ll come to exploring real-life issues, and whether all that snazzy art’s actually indicative of the final product.

“We meant that in terms of open-world, basically,” CD Projekt’s Agnieszka Szostak told RPS. “But we won’t just throw you in the open world and let go of the storytelling. The story and creating the main plot will still be very, very important for us. But the sandbox environment means that actually you won’t be limited to this particular story. You’ll just be able to enjoy the world all around you. Which is really, really challenging, because it’s very difficult to find the proper balance between the very immersive story we try to tell, the world we try to create, and the freedom we want to give gamers.”

“But this is actually something that’s very connected to the whole Cyberpunk universe. If we go 50-plus years from now, you’d want to be able to delve really deeply into some strange and unique places. The challenge for us is to first find a balance and then to create an environment that won’t see you lose the main plot if you decide to leave it for a couple hours.”

By its very nature, that sort of thing could also turn CDP-style choices into a tough nut to crack. After all, The Witcher 2′s defining moment involved a major shift in location. But how do you one-up something of that significance when the player can see all the sights at their leisure? It’s another difficult balancing act, but – while everything’s not nailed down enough to discuss in terms of specifics just yet – CDP doesn’t plan to let choice take a backseat to a shiny, neon-bathed new setting. Or, in short: Sorry, Geralt. The Future scoffs at your silly problems.

“In terms of how difficult they’ll be or what impact they’ll have, I can definitely tell you that we won’t go any lower than The Witcher,” said Szostak. ”We want to go even deeper. We want to make it even more real. In The Witcher, we didn’t have any black and whites. Only gray areas. That’s exactly how life works. And if we’re going to do a game for adult gamers, they can’t feel like, ‘OK, the only decision to make it kill the babies or save the babies.’ It’s way more complex than that.”

Much of this, Szostak noted, stems from the fact that Cyberpunk’s nearish future setting links it pretty closely to social and technological issues we’re beginning to encounter in our day-to-day lives. That, she pointed out, is the result of a very deliberate decision on CDP’s part.

“On one hand, 50-ish years ahead seems like quite a long time,” she admitted. “But at the same time, I’m in my 30s. I might not exactly be able to make it to 2077. But still, lots and lots of large corporations are actually planning for that point. So it’s still a future that you can relate to. You can imagine what it might look like while keeping in mind that 20 years ago, there was no Internet. Ten years ago, there were no smart phones. So we can be very creative with how technology evolves. But again, the challenge is to not push it too far. It still needs to be believable.”

“The whole setting is based on a point where technology is both a blessing and a curse. Since we’re trying to create a game for adult gamers, there will definitely be lots of choices and lots of social problems we’re actually encountering right now in our everyday lives.It’s still a game, but our goal with every project we have is to make it very, very believable. And maybe we don’t have these exact problems right now in 2012, but maybe you can see the beginnings of it right now. And then, 50-or-so years from now, they might actually explode and be brought to the point where they are in Cyberpunk.”

All of which sounds quite promising, but there’s still one thing missing from this whole equation: the, er, game itself. We know a fair deal, but we’ve seen very little. So of course, I asked the most insightful interview question to ever spring forth from the minds of men: “Will it have graphics?”

“It will have its own unique look,” said Szostak. “It’s not The Witcher. It’s a different setting, so we’re taking a completely different approach in terms of the artistic concept. We’re lucky enough to have a really talented art director. That means we have a really precise vision of the game from the beginning. So it’s not just like, ‘OK, let’s post this random art [online] because it’s cool. We’ll never, ever use it in the game. It’s just a marketing asset.’ That’s totally not us. We really know exactly what we want to achieve and how the game should look.”

“This particular art will have references within the game. We’ll be revealing more assets and art, and eventually renders going further into the development process. But you’ll be able to say you saw this art several years before [the game came out], and it has its place in the game.”

So I’m going to take that as a “yes,” then.

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112 Comments »

  1. Paul says:

    The only thing preventing me from preordering this is the fact that it cannot be preordered yet.

    • x1501 says:

      The only thing preventing me from preordering this is the fact that, apart from the usual marketing claims (“Deeper! Bigger! Best Thing Ever!”), I don’t really know a single objective fact about the game. It certainly seems promising, but will it deliver?

    • saginatio says:

      It could have been a kickstarter project. Now we would be pledging for a “customisable artificial limbs for your pet cat” stretch goal.

  2. Zarx says:

    Can’t wait to get my hands on this game!

  3. Yosharian says:

    SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY

  4. phelix says:

    Sandbox is indeed a somewhat-too broad concept, especially when thrown around in marketing blurbs.

    • kanalin94 says:

      Oh! Really cool! Be sure to take a look! You need! http://chilp.it/f36ebd

    • wodin says:

      Sandbox..Open World = Countless side quests\missions that are more or less the same as the last one ala Skyrim…

      • Tuco says:

        That sounds more like a poorly designed open world game.
        Some of us remember games like Ultima or Gothic and know that having a large, non-linear world doesn’t mean you have to rely on fetch quests, autoscaling and random loot.

    • Josh W says:

      I’m not sure that’s right, the word sandbox will always refer to different things in that it refers to different games, but between each of them they have many constants:

      Level design focused on two way enterance/exits, rather than halo-esque drop down cliffs (used strongly in borderlands for example to give linear quest lines within more open environments). Level transitions are mostly about adding to the game world, rather than taking trips through new loops that take you back to the central zone.

      Next, the game assumes that you will spend a significant amount of your time doing nothing in particular, and often both tries to fold quests into that (random occurrences/ai triggered quests) and make it so that there are general systems that run play that you can interact with.
      Lots of emergent and probably quite silly fun, mucking around with physics engines, automated police reactions, bandits and diseases.

      As a design ideal, it’s that if you make the basic mechanics fun enough and make a place interesting enough, players will make their own amazing stories from it.

  5. Low Life says:

    I haven’t played Cyberpunk so I have no idea how those games tend to turn out, but I hope this game’s not just about one guy killing hundreds of other guys.

    • belgand says:

      Cyberpunk was actually known for it’s ridiculously deadly and rather well-researched combat system: Friday Night Firefight. Very much of the “one shot can easily kill you” real-world variety and without much in the way of usable armor or any way to mitigate this other than not getting hit.

      • Sardukar says:

        We-eeell..that depends. Yes, FNFF could be very deadly. Until you pile on the Skinweave and CB4 armored high-fashion clothing…
        Not to mention Full Body Conversions, of course. Har.

        So it’ll really depend on how CDPR prefers the combat – inherently lethal regardless of gear, less or minimally lethal with good gear or set by difficulty level.

        I would like to see your “default” Cpunk setting of street punk vs 9mm = major wound, bleeding and potential death save.

        • FunkyBadger3 says:

          WELCOME TO MORTAL0!

          Good times.

        • Stromko says:

          It would be weird if game designers went truly realistic with damage in combat. You’d have a game where you can be shot thirty times center-mass and still keep fighting, just because you’re hopped up on adrenaline and none of the shots hit your spine dead-on, but (and here’s where it plays different from Modern Shooter 5) a few minutes later you’re going to be dead no matter what anyone does.

          • Sardukar says:

            FNFF DOES THIS! If you keep making your Death Saves ( at increasing negatives) you can keep on living, waaaay past the point of death for everyone around you that died one or two saves in.

            Then, of course, you fail one and it’s over. OR IS IT. Welcome to Death State 1! As long as they resuscitate you before you hit Dead 10 ( five minutes ) you’re still around! Mostly. Perhaps a little brain damaged.

            Anyway, yes. You, normal guy you, can take hilarious trauma before dying if you keep making those rolls.
            Now, staying upright after taking that damage…that’s a lot tougher.

          • 0over0 says:

            That would be movie “realism”–not real life realism.

  6. Mr. Mister says:

    Maybe it means that cats (aka Reddit) are gonna wet themselves upon contact?

  7. belgand says:

    No Internet 20 years ago? Not even close. Even if we’re just looking at the web alone it was developed just about 20 years ago and it started to become much more popular and accessible once Mosaic came out in ’93, just a hair over 20 years ago. The Palm Treo line came out almost exactly 20 years ago and if you really want to go back you had much of the same functionality with the earlier Palm models that could connect to the Internet with a cellular modem, such as the Palm VII.

    What this really means is that the next big thing is just peeking it’s head out of the ground right now. It’s here already, albeit in an early, unpopular or embryonic form. I don’t want to say it’s the Oculus Rift, per se, but that’s about the same level as what we’re looking at here.

    • crinkles esq. says:

      Agreed, methinks Nathan is a bit on the young side if he thinks the Internet didn’t exist 20 years ago.

      I’d disagree with the CDProjekt rep about corps planning for 50 years ahead. Most just react to quarterly earnings reports and have no real long-term strategy. However, China plans 50 years ahead. You’re seeing this long-term view unraveling a bit as they shift towards more dependence on a free market economy.

      • MrNash says:

        Yeah, I saw the 50 years ahead thing too, and had to try and quell my cynicism a bit there. :p

    • Arglebargle says:

      I want to say one word to you. Just one word….
      Nanotech

    • melnificent says:

      No smartphones 10 years ago… really? Kyocera smartphone is 11 years old, and blackberry had just released their smartphone.
      I was using a rebranded HTC Canary (Orange SPV), which was running windows smartphone 2002.

      • x1501 says:

        Lies. Everyone knows that it was Apple that invented smartphones in June 2009.

    • Lagwolf says:

      Dude I was online in 1982… it wasn’t called the internet but we were online via our dial-ups modems.

      On this game… I will be peeved if I can’t get into the beta. A great cyberpunk game is what we really need.

    • sinister agent says:

      Oh come on, the meaning was clear. As far as 99.999% of the world’s population were concerned, she’s absolutely right. No doubt she’s well aware that there was an internet back then, and probably smart phones older than we expect too, but they were such niche items, and so simple and unusual compared to today, that it’s little but a point of pedantry to say otherwise in casual conversation.

    • Feferuco says:

      When I see claims like this I just assume the person is still using 2000-as-reference mindset. I do it all the time. I assume we’re all on the year 2000 and say “20 years ago” as really meaning “early 80s”. So although the Internet is actually older than that, back then it really wasn’t the Internet we all came to know and love.

  8. Choca says:

    It means that it’s a box, with sand in it.

  9. EvilHungarian says:

    “But you’ll be able to say you saw this art several years before [the game came out], and it has its place in the game.”
    That hurts a bit…

    • Sardukar says:

      Yes, I too winced when I saw this. Years. Sigh. Years of waiting for 30 hours of gameplay. Why, oh, why can’t the ratio be somewhat reversed.

      • Aedrill says:

        Do you really want to have games taking years to finish be released every three days? That sounds like hell to me. Vatican should use it to discourage gamers from playing violent games.

        • The Random One says:

          I’d take games just being announced three days before they’re ready to be shipped.

          • Aedrill says:

            Nah, I love The Wait (Copyright by Rab Florence). Sure, it’s horrible to wait for years, but last few months are amazing. I was waiting for about two years for The Witcher 1, preordered it, and loved/hated every moment of wait. It’s weird but this mix of excitement and anxiety can be a part of the fun. At least for me.

  10. Trent Hawkins says:

    It’s all about loading your Super Soaker with DMSO

    http://spoonyexperiment.com/2011/10/08/shadowrun-the-squirt-gun-wars/

  11. Dariune says:

    So far CDP havent failed to deliver and I dont think they are quite ready to sell out yet.

    I honestly think, whatever they do with this concept, they are going to do it well.

    And I am really looking forward to seeing what they pull out of the bag.

  12. Nameless1 says:

    A sanbox like it was on Bloodlines would be perfectly fine for me.

    • Maldomel says:

      I would be fine with this type of sandboxing too. And knowing CDP, they could totally pull it off, or do better than that.

  13. FunkyBadger3 says:

    Really hoping they junk the “cannon” characters.

    Apart from Adam Smasher. Obv.

    • Sardukar says:

      Really? Adam Smasher seemed like a Saturday Morning cartoon, shallow and stereotypical. Big guy, lots of cyberware, sneers at non-cyborgs, likes to shoot with big guns. I think I’ve played him a few times, in a few other games.

      I like Morgan Blackhand fine, or Ripperjack, who is kind of amusingly nuts.

      Johnny Silverhand, well. Well. Rockerboys, right?

      • FunkyBadger3 says:

        Smasher was a cyber-psycho before they ripped his brain out of its body and put it into a dragoon unit (and before they put that into a PA suit)… he certainly aint subtle.

        Blackhand’s alright, I suppose. Spider Murphy as well – all the rest of them can go and hang. Well, apart from Saburo, of course.

        • Sardukar says:

          I found Smasher pretty uninteresting is all. Even before Arasaka “improved” him. Nothing really…neat..about him. There was a cyberpsycho NPC who ran the Lords of Pain out of NYC who was similar, but at least his knives fetish made him a little tastier.

          Saburo is really neat as much because of his history as his position. A man around since before the Rising Sun lost its militaristic ambitions, now running one of -the- corporations of the future. Very cool.

  14. biz says:

    I think a large part of the The Witcher’s brilliance is the way it integrates side-quests into the main storyline. It goes beyond world-building or influencing some character stats. Half the time I didn’t even know whether or not it was a side-quest.

    But I never heard it called a sandbox.

  15. Arglebargle says:

    I hope this game is set far far in the future — at a time when games are released with an invertable mouse command, and with a wide range of screen resolutions.

  16. perfectheat says:

    Hope it looks like this and this and…

  17. ukpanik says:

    Witcher 2 environment was awful for wandering about..very closed off if you strayed from path.

    • Aedrill says:

      Nobody ever said The Witcher 2 was a sandbox. It’s a new territory for them, and they’re not trying to hide it.

  18. Phenomen says:

    Paradise Cracked = cyberpank sandbox.
    awesome RPG customization with great story, kinda open world, deep and funny dialogs..
    too bad English localization was horrible and western world didn’t notice this gem.

  19. dE says:

    The Sega Genesis Shadowrun had a semi-open world as well. You could spent hours doing randomly generated missions, hacking into computers in what actually WASN’T a minigame, breaking into buildings, and all sorts of nonsense. The entire game was built around that idea. True, it was quite limited from todays point of view, but it really worked out back then. And the hacking is still leagues better than anything we’ve got in todays games.
    So from experience: Cyberpunk Sandbox can work really well.

  20. Runs With Foxes says:

    Surely a sandbox implies a large degree of freedom of play. It sounds like Cyberpunk will have a bunch of obvious story choices and I guess some sidequests. That’s not a sandbox.

  21. MistyMike says:

    So the concept artworks are starting to pour in… what’s that, a girl wearing knickers and a tank top with mechanichal blades attached to her arms? How tasteful. I’m waiting for the full Playboy pictorial of digital cyber-nudies. Don’t ever change, CD-Project.

    • Jackablade says:

      Triss Merrigold appeared in Polish Playboy, so that scenario probably isn’t all that far-feched.

    • Aedrill says:

      So you’re saying that you’ve never been in contact with classic Cyberpunk? That’s fine, I guess. Just try to hold your judgement to yourself, if you don’t understand the context, that would be better for all of us.

      • MistyMike says:

        Classic Cyberpunk is a pen and paper role playing game. How sexist is it depends solely on the GM and the players, so your argument falls apart right there.

        • Aedrill says:

          Have you ever had a CP rulebook in your hands? Have you ever read a description of this world? Seriously, you’re so far from the point, it hurts. Just because it’s PnP RPG, doesn’t mean it’s completely unspecified until someone plays it. It’s a book, not Shroedinger’s Cat!

          • MistyMike says:

            Then the whole point you’re making is that it is equally sexist as the original inspiration, which is obviously still bad for any sensible person.

            Hey, aren’t you an employee of CDP? Because how you try to attack critics here while accusing them of being members of ‘western culture’ raises that suspicion.

          • Aedrill says:

            No, I’m not a member of CDPR and you just proved you simply don’t know anything about CP2020, and your knee-jerk reaction is really not worth my time. Thank you, and good bye.

            EDIT: Also, I’m not attacking people (for example, I’m not implying that they’re acting unethically and are guided by some agenda. Like, you know, “Are you an employee of XYZ?”), I’m discussing with them. If I say that their reaction is immature is because I really find their reaction immature. What’s important is that I’m not calling them names, I’m not saying they’re immature. Learn the difference.

          • MistyMike says:

            So you’re just a fanboy then? Okay.
            Dude, you are right that I don’t know much about the source material and I also don’t care. I am only interested in Cyberpunk the video game as a standalone product. For your information, the game is not only meant of fans of the original and should stand on its own merits. Some aspects of the visual design we’ve seen so far cannot be counted as ‘merits’ though.

          • Aedrill says:

            Blockiddy-block.

          • MistyMike says:

            Fine, block me. You’re the one who attacked me and called me ignorant just for expressing my opinion. All the better for me not to be responded to by your kind of folks.

          • Aedrill says:

            I unblocked you for a second to read this discussion to my mate, and I noticed this funny note. I have never called you an ignorant, I just suggested that you’ve never read CP2020 book and therefore you don’t understand the context. Which you confirmed. I did not go into name calling in this, or any other discussions at all. Until now, you troll.

          • MistyMike says:

            I suggested that a single concept graphic was somewhat tasteless, to which you idiotically responded that I don’t know the subject matter AS IF IT MADE IT ANY LESS TASTELESS. It’s a big non-sequitur. And you insist I’m the troll here?

  22. The Random One says:

    Gotta love CDProject. They give this huge talk about making mature games for mature gamers and there’s a pic of half-naked chick with spider roboarms in the middle of the article. Yes, I know sex isn’t automatically immature and while I hate fantasy too much to play the Witcher games second-hand reports suggest it handled the theme rather sensibly, but even if it isn’t pandering, it looks like it and I find it funny.

    • biz says:

      the maturity comes from the morality issues and how the choices are more sophisticated than good vs. evil

      the sex is completely unrelated to that and a very small fraction of the games

    • Aedrill says:

      So you do realize that sex does not automatically equals immature but seeing woman’s pants makes you think it actually does?

      You’re either from USA or you’re under heavy influence of this weird, pseudo-moral western culture. You’re looking at a picture of a woman in a shirt and pants, there’s no cleavage, she’s not in a provocative pose, there’s nothing seductive or particularly sexy about her. She’s attractive and her looks are in contrast with big ass blades coming from her arms. If it was a bloke, you probably wouldn’t mind, this conversation would never happen, the word “sex” would never be used.

      EDIT: OK, there is some cleavage but it’s hardly provocative/objectifying.

      • elderman says:

        Is there a word choice disconnect here? It’s not ‘sexy’ in the sense of being intentionally arousing, (and I don’t have a problem with the image) but I’m surprised you don’t see that picture as sexualised. She’s in a strapless, fitted chemise and a thong, coiffed and made up and she’s got her legs spread. Plus her nipples are perking. And there’s blood everywhere. If that image isn’t provocative it’s not for lack of trying.

        It’s funny to think of a man in the same pose. I trying to remember if I’ve ever seen a sci-fi illustration of a man in a thong, crotch facing out. Maybe some old John Carter of Mars covers. Those aren’t eroticised to you?

        • kament says:

          So what if the pic is actually “sexualized”? What exactly is the problem with that? Last time I checked we have organisations like PEGI and ESRB, which very much agree sex doesn’t mean immature. Quite the opposite, actually.

          On the other hand we have some homebred esthetes, who for whatever perverted reasons perceive sex and the slightest hint at it as something which is only acceptable if you’re like 13-year old. And when you hit your twenties, you mature so you’re either not interested anymore or just have too much on your plate as it is. Oh come on.

          They talk about sex as a sell (like it’s a bad thing; is it? really?), but when the industry is selling mostly violence, it’s just irrelevant. Because the latter is way more exploitative.

          • elderman says:

            Yeah, we’re talking about the same genre as Neuromancer, Ghost in the Shell, and Altered Carbon. Sexy, violent women are common tropes, as are bodies showing the seams between flesh and machine. I think it’s a pretty cool take on a razor girl. If I were art directing it, I might prefer something even a little spookier, but both the first and the third image look spot-on Cyberpunk to me.

            Not sure I’ve met anyone who thought sex ended with puberty and I don’t care much what PEGI and ESRB think ‘mature’ means, but I’m more or less with you on the rest of it.

          • kament says:

            It was an exaggeration, of course… oh, to hell with that, it wasn’t. I mean, there are people in this very thread who see picture of a girl covered in blood, armed with, err, arm-blades and wearing very little from her waist down—and all of a sudden the latter becomes a big deal for them. They go like: “What kind of a mature game is that?”

            I can only assume they believe sex is not for adults. I really can’t come up with any other explanation.

          • Yosharian says:

            Everything is a trope if you all you see is Tropes. Tropes aren’t necessarily bad things, either. All this fucking bitching over a piece of concept art.

      • njursten says:

        The problem with comparing with the probable reactions for a male version is that this kind of pose is not the norm for male subjects. Of course it isn’t as much of a problem then.

        • elderman says:

          That’s an interesting point. For what kind of pictures of women is this pose the norm? I was going to guess lingerie and bathing suit ads. After looking around casually, I see similar poses in glamour photography, straight-up erotica, and pictures of athletes, especially martial artists. My web search turns up similar pictures of both men and women, more women than men.

          However, there’s nothing exactly like it. I think it’s actually a fairly original pic in the details: a woman with an unarched back, seen from below, looking left, with weapons. Just talking about overall effect, the scene reminds me of some covers of X-23 comics.

          Have to say again, for me there’s no problem with the pic at all.

    • elderman says:

      Sex sells.

      Plus, Agnieszka Szostak talks about the target demographic, saying the game is for adult gamers, references contemporary events, and talks about morally ambiguous choices. There’s no claim there that the imagery wont be exploitative, that the stories wont be lurid pulp. That’s part of the genre. Deadly, sexual women (razor girls) have been a part of cyberpunk since Molly Millions.

      Relatedly, I found a cool feminist literary critique of razor girls linked from the Molly Millions wikipedia article. It talks about how their cyborg bodies combined with a grab bag of gendered behaviours make entertainment out of thinking about unexpected gender identities for women (my summary).

      What do you think the odds are that just linking to that article and using the word ‘feminist’ on a gaming site is going to start a flame war?

    • Big Daddy Dugger says:

      That picture isn’t really sexual in any way other than whatever you’re imagining. It almost seems like calling a mannequin with no clothing on it sexual.

      • jrodman says:

        How amazingly desensitized you are.

        • Aedrill says:

          How amazingly patronizing you are. If you disagree, you back it up with some arguments, you don’t go insulting people you disagree with.

          • njursten says:

            Come on, don’t you find BDD’s comment ridiculous? She’s showing lots of skin and has nothing but panties on on her lower body. It’s rather hard to take him seriously.

            Hopefully there will be some more well-clothed girls in later concept art images shown.

          • Aedrill says:

            Oh fuck. Why do you think that a girl without trousers is automatically sexualised and we need to sharpen our pitchforks? Seriously, the amount of immature reactions in this thread is overwhelming. When you see someone showing skin, you don’t need to raise the alarm, we’re not in danger, people won’t die from watching skin. We’re adults, FFS, we’ve seen it before, we’ve seen more than just that. It’s not exciting, it’s not horrible, it’s not WRONG. It’s none of the big words, it’s natural.

            The question we should be asking ourselves is “Why did CDProjekt release such picture?” to which the answer is – because it’s Cyberpunk, and this picture presents all that CP stands for – fascination with pop culture and loss of humanity. You might disagree with their statement, you may dislike the art style of the picture but there is not a single reason to release a righteous, prude fury because of it. It’s art, discuss it, that’s what it’s for.

          • njursten says:

            The thing is, most people criticizing the image aren’t doing so because they’re prudes. At least I’m not. The problem is that this is more or less the norm when depicting females in games.

            You touch upon another problem: what if a fairly unclothed female is very fitting thematically? Sadly, I think the image should still be criticized. Until there’s a more sane balance reached, you can’t afford to let it slip by, because it will still be help cement the old views. You can’t be talking about making exceptions when the norm is still messed up.

            Also, before demonizing CDP I think we should wait and see how their other concept art images look. They could’ve picked a better image to start with, though…

          • Aedrill says:

            I disagree completely. Firstly, people here are acting like prudes. Worse, they’re acting like teenagers. They get overexcited when they see a woman in knickers and they’re all “above that”. What she’s wearing could be, and often is, used as pajamas. People are getting rage-boners when looking at a girl in pajamas. They’re not necessarily prude because of religious reasons but it makes absolutely no difference.

            “Sadly, I think the image should still be criticized.”
            Now this is the part where I couldn’t believe, what I see. Of course it shouldn’t! Think of, say A Game of Thrones with lots and lots of female characters entrapped in patriarchal system so much that they can’t help but think exactly what men would like them to think. George Martin is criticising this system, and saying that he should wait with this until we “grow up” is just stupid. It’s not gonna work. CP is only a RPG game/system. You don’t expect any serious depth from it, sure. But if you think about it, CP is about what could happen, if we keep making certain mistakes. It’s about world gone bad, so pretty much everything in there is a part of criticism of our times.

            Another example – Fight Club. Gosh, this film is amazing. It talks about stuff I wrote about in different thread. The way men are perceived in pop culture, the way they’re forced by society to live generates huge amounts of stress and grief. The film (as well as the book) deals with it by going nuts. It says “you want me to be always alpha, always successful, always in control? OK, I’ll do this this for you and let’s see if you’ll like it.”. Fight Club is a collage of visualisations of men that can be found in media in general. It’s XX/XXI century’s equivalent of pin-up girls. Of course there are people who miss the point and think this film is about beating the living shit out of other men. They think that it’s about being tough, and strong, and being in control, and treating women like trash like all real men do. But just because those knuckleheads can’t understand such a simple message, it doesn’t mean we should criticise the film itself. We will always have stupid people who don’t understand what’s being said to them, and we can’t afford becoming hostages to their little, sad minds.

          • njursten says:

            OK. Yes, that’s rather stupid of them. Not that many of them have specified their problem with the image though, they might have issues similar to mine. But your, and a lot of other people’s, defense that there is nothing sexual about the picture isn’t really helping you. Better stick to calling them prudes. Stuff like Pilouuuu below suggesting that they want everyone to wear burkas… is really a balance too much to ask for?

            Heh, I guessed that part would be hard to swallow. To clarify: criticize, but don’t go batshit insane about. Even buy the game! Just make clear that you wouldn’t like this if it wasn’t a thematic part. Again, balance! Every now and then is fine, but not almost all the time.

            I don’t know about G R R Martin, he might be criticizing medieval society, but he’s written some rather daft things too. I quite like his stuff though. And about CDP not going for a deep game, that’s not really needed. They don’t have to criticize the current state of society, they can try to just not join in with “what everyone is doing”. Though if we assumed Cyberpunk is not supposed to be a deep game, then a comparison with Fight Club and G R R Martin is not really proper, is it?

      • Josh W says:

        Pin ups have certain poses. There are cliches of that genre. That image includes them!

        A robot could probably describe that as a sexualised image more easily than it could distinguish a picture of a pack of biscuits, they are that constrained in possibilities.

    • pilouuuu says:

      Well, If I saw a girl like that I’d hardly be turned on because I’d be too busy being scared of her.

      But seriously, what’s the big deal? Are you implying that every woman in a videogame should wear a burka? I lost track about what’s sexist and what’s not, because I think some women would be offended if you said that they are not allowed to dress sexy and/or they should avoid being sexualized as we all human beings are.

      In all fairness I think CD Project should include sexy men too for the girl gamers out there and for men that enjoy seeing handsome men. Bioware is quite an expert at that and I think their games are more inclusive because of that. Now, anything that Bioware do, CD Project as we know, can do better, so I expect that the game is not about sexy people shooting each other, but if sexy people eventually show up in the game and if they are in some sexy activities wearing no clothes… Is it something really that awful if all that is included in a game with a mature story? I think it would be realistic, except characters would be slightly more sexy than most people in real life.

      For me it’s not a big deal and in fact it makes the game more fun, which is what all games should be about.

      By the way, no one mentioned the guy in the first picture and his clothes showing his manly chest and his overall sexy looks. Why doesn’t anyone consider his looks offensive or unrealistic? Now that’s what I call double standards.

      • Turkey says:

        Because the dude is presented as in control and powerful while the girl is shown as weak and vulnerable.

        • kament says:

          Looks to me guy is scared out of his clothes and probably dead in the next minute at best. He even forgot about his gun, apparently. I know I would be scared watching that hulking death machine or whatever.

          • Turkey says:

            Maybe, but he’s not on his knees in a thong begging for mercy.

          • kament says:

            Well, I see now how it could be perceived like that, but I think she looks more like “What have I done”. Or maybe she’s just exhausted of murdering around. She’s covered in blood, evidently someone else’s blood, her posture is too open and doesn’t suggest submission, and then there are her arm-blades (gulps).

          • Mut says:

            Yeah, looks to me like she just sliced some poor schmuck’s face off. While the image may indeed be sexualized, she certainly doesn’t appear weak.

          • Harlander says:

            The best thing to come out of this line of discussion is the term “murdering around”.

            “What have you been up to?”
            “Oh, you know, just murdering around.”

          • Aedrill says:

            This is just stupid. Sorry, but it is. CDPR are assuming that when adults see a picture of half naked woman, they don’t go “Ohmigod, I think I saw a nipple!” but instead they try to figure why it is what it is. This girl? Of course she’s on her knees looking like she’s begging for mercy. That’s because she’s got huge razors sticking out of her arms. They’re showing you a contrast, which is exactly what CP is about – a mix of exaggerated pop culture and big guns and improbable, dehumanazing (is that even a word?) implants. At this point of development all they can show you is concept art. That’s all they can do to give you some basic idea about what the game is and how it “feels”.

            One more thing – we’re always so eager to assume that vulnerable = bad and powerful = good. Well, it’s not that simple. The fact that men are always shown in a position of power and control is actually quite damaging to us as individuals and society. Maybe we’re not affected by the same problems as women are, but have you ever heard about war? It’s just dick waving on a big scale. The fact that we always have to feel in control and alpha to be manly enough causes us to do sometimes terrible things to fellow men. So no, I don’t think we should compare pictures of vulnerable women with pictures of vulnerable men, we need to look for pictures of powerful men in control, whose only purpose is to fight, and protect and make snappy comments about their opponents because it’s a valid analogy.

    • Prime says:

      Oh Judas Priest…do we’s gotta have this argument every time a CD Projekt game is talked about? You realise it makes us look like WE have the bizarre issues with sex, don’t you?

  23. Feferuco says:

    Gosh darned I’ve been aching to have just an open world cyberpunk city to explore since forever. If they deliver just that I’ll be happy enough.

  24. mattymc1984 says:

    Looks interesting, except the name is ridiculous. ‘Cyberpunk’ is a genre. This is like calling a COD game “first person army shooter” or maybe Skyrim… “Fantasy Roleplaying game”.

    • Aedrill says:

      What’s this, I don’t even… It’s based on the PnP RPG system, called Cyberpunk 2020, how else should they call it? It’s aimed mostly at fans of said system so they didn’t really have much choice here, did they?

  25. SturmovikDrakon says:

    Reading this with the Blade Runner theme in the background

    #edit I JUST SIGNED UP WHY IS THIS SHARK MY AVATAR?

  26. Whisperduke says:

    Universally Sandbox means no class system.