And it has shed a lot of new light on what we can expect from the titular game April 2020, specifically, playstyle.
Some things we have learned:
We got our first look at the Pacifica district, a failed tourist destination where funding was pulled and the migrant workforce fend for themselves. Motorcycle, armored car. Sections of the city unlock as you explore. Night markets rampant in Pacifica. There’s also Imperial Mall, an abandoned mall that houses the juiced up gang called the Animals. Their rivals, the Voodoo Boys, need your help. The Voodoo Boys are the most skilled Netrunners in the district. You get to choose whether to help the Voodoo boys or not. Another cool thing we can see is that subtitles are translated in real time when people speak another language.
Character creation: Choose your backstory from one of three character stories:
- Nomad (Roaming badlands, grew up in Nomad clan. Honesty, integrity, a love of freedom.)
- Street Kid (gangs, fixers, small time pushers, dolls, you were raised by them all. The weak serve the strong.)
- Corporate (Bent the rules, exploited secrets, weaponized information. There are only winners and losers.)
Character creator: Define basic physical attributes of your avatar, but also surface wiring.
There will also be an extensive skill tree, allowing for hybrid and specialized builds. There were two different types shown in an example: A powerful solo (guns and melee) and a netrunner (technology who hacks battlefield).
- The powerful solo build can use enhanced strength to rip off guns from turrets or pry open doors. You can also use enemies as meat shields. Players can also choose no-kill playthroughs
- Netrunners use subterfuge and sabotage, striking from the shadows. You use your cyberdeck to hack access points with a mini-game. In a world where everything is connected, anything can be hacked (to kill or distract) with varying levels of creativity and amusement (see the video). Nanowire can also hack at a distance.
Cyberspace is a place you can visit by jacking in.
The space used to be lawless and vast, but after an attack, Blackwall was created. The virtual wall cordons off most of the net, and the Voodoo boys want to break through it. Netwatch is the government organization that wants to stop them. You can choose which side you decide to be on.
The gameplay footage ends with the digital ghost of Johnny Silverhand, the revolutionary turned musician who somehow lives inside your head and is your companion through the game. However, even he could become your enemy, depending on your choices. Keanu Reeves/John Wick/Neo is definitely NOT someone I would want to have as my enemy. Although I literally laughed out loud when Silverhand spoke his line at the end of the gameplay trailer. It’s a sign of good things to come.
Personally, I could not be more excited for this game to come out. I’ve learned the hard way through playing Deus Ex and Dishonored that I much prefer tactical shooting to stealth action, so I will be going with Powerful Solo on my first playthrough and then Netrunner on my second once I know Night City better. I also really like the description of a Nomad, it’s someone who’s from everywhere and nowhere and works with what is given him but keeps his integrity intact. Playing as a corporate might be fun on the second playthrough, though.
So which backstory will you decide on? Which type of build would you prefer, a powerful solo or a netrunner? Let me know in the comments below!