Cyberpunk 2077 was our favorite demo of E3 2018. There’s a very good probability it will be my favourite demo of E3 2019 as properly—although I’m giving Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2 and Dying Light 2 the advantage of the doubt a minimum of. They’ll have to come back robust although, as CD Projekt has as soon as once more introduced a demo that made me ask “Wow, how did they do that?”

Even having seen Watch Dogs Legion this week, which additionally appears to push current-gen consoles past what I assumed was succesful, I’m nonetheless amazed Cyberpunk 2077 is someway resulting from launch earlier than the next-gen changeover. Last 12 months I mentioned that appeared unimaginable, and but we’re staring down the barrel of an April 2020 launch date. More idiot me.

Of course, we have not performed it but so possibly the constraints are extra apparent exterior a fastidiously choreographed E3 demo. Once once more we crammed right into a darkish room within the Los Angeles Convention Center to observe an hour-long slice of Cyberpunk 2077, with a CD Projekt worker behind the controls.

I’m not lifeless

First up: Your character’s lifeless, however not. Named V, you’ve got been implanted with a chip that (supposedly) holds the key to immortality and everybody needs you dead-dead, not simply sort-of lifeless, to allow them to steal the key for themselves. It’s acceptable Keanu Reeves performs a personality in Cyberpunk 2077, as a result of it certain does sound rather a lot like Johnny Mnemonic.

Even his identify seems like Johnny Mnemonic. You’re additionally haunted by a “digital ghost,” a.okay.a. Keanu Reeves’s character, named Johnny Silverhand. Which, holy hell, what a reputation.

The demo began with character creation. There are a ton of choices—floor wiring, hair, eyeshadow, et cetera—plus the standard stat allocation. “You really think they give a rat’s dick how you look?” says Silverhand whenever you’re completed.

CD Projekt Red

So that is why they name him Johnny Silverhand

We then explored the district of Pacifica, and particularly a “church” of some kind. Once once more, I used to be struck by the identical thought as final 12 months’s demo: “Wow, there are a ton of individuals right here.” We pushed our means via a crowd of dozens, if not a whole bunch, of individuals crammed inside this brutalist constructing. It’s unimaginable, and I’m nonetheless amazed that is apparently a current-gen console recreation. I’ll be curious what compromises CD Projekt must make for that to occur.

I used to be struck by the identical feeling after we walked down the Pacifica boardwalk, smog wafting up from the buildings, with a staggering draw distance that confirmed off skyscrapers, Ferris wheels, and extra stretching into the space. There’s additionally a day/night time cycle, which provides much more complexity, driving down the road at sundown as the varied workplace buildings start to light up.

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