CD Projekt Red’s tech dystopia FPS Cyberpunk 2077 is expected out later this year. Ye olde marketing machine seems to be getting its gears turning again and CDPR have today posted about one of the gangs that you’ll find in Night City. The Mox are a group that CDPR say “protect working girls and guys from violence and abuse,” specifically sex workers like their in-game inspiration Elizabeth Borden.
CDPR’s tweet gives just a quick blurb about The Mox and their goals:
“Formed in 2076 after the death of Elizabeth “Lizzie” Borden, a strip club owner & ex-prostitute who treated her workers fairly and defended them from violent clients, The Mox refer to themselves as ‘those who protect working girls and guys’ from violence and abuse.”
Sounds like an interesting premise, to be sure. The idea of a grassroots movement that defends folks who most need it from the big bad system seems pretty punk to me. I only wonder if CDPR can actually handle the subject matter in a way that does more good than harm.
Of course, a single tweet can’t divulge all the nuance of CDPR’s intentions for The Mox, nor I’m sure would any of us want the entire plot laid out in marketing-speak some several months before the game is out. (One thing that’s interesting is that the character of Lizzie Borden is presumably named after the real person suspected though ultimately acquitted of double murder.)
But still, interesting though the Mox may be, CDPR don’t exactly have a track record that inspires trust where issues of representation are concerned. We’ve had a lot of reasons to be skeptical, between Cyberpunk 2077’s seemingly transphobic in-game marketing, and a tasteless transphobic joke on CDPR’s Twitter account.
That’s not to say that CDPR mean harm, or that they can’t do better. They can and may. For starters, CDPR have, since last year’s E3, indicated that they plan to have their character creator allow players to mash up their voice, face, and physical traits for gender representation that isn’t strictly binary. The Mox may be a wonderful addition to the game. I hope so.
We’ll likely be hearing more about Cyberpunk 2077 and Night City’s other gangs as we head into the summer season. It’s currently planned for a September 16th release date (which CDPR still plan to hit) and you can find it on Steam until then.