How Cyberpunk 2077 will be different to The Witcher 3

. 2 years ago
V and Geralt in Cyberpunk 2077
CD Projekt Red

Cyberpunk 2077 is being spearheaded by the team behind the legendary 2015 title, The Witcher 3. CD Projekt Red has had Cyberpunk 2077 in their sights for a whopping 8 years now, but what’s going to be different about the two? 

It’s sometimes easy to forget, amidst the hype, that CD Projekt Red is responsible for arguably the game of the generation. The Witcher 3 broke new ground in terms of overall game development. It encompassed everything about what a true role-playing game should do. Incredible storytelling, memorable characters, gripping quests, many customization options, and much more.

But many people that enjoyed the adventures of Geralt of Rivia are blissfully unaware that ‘V’ is CDPR’s new creation. The new main character for Cyberpunk 2077 may not be as iconic at this moment, but they could be. So we’re here today to make everyone aware of Cyberpunk 2077 and how it’s different from The Witcher 3.

Let’s jump right into it.

Character creation

character creation in cyberpunk 2077
CD Projekt
Who will you make in Cyberpunk 2077?

Now, in The Witcher 3, many people were more than content at leaving Geralt the way he was. Keep in mind, this was the third appearance of the Butcher Of Blaviken.

People were familiar with him and he was immediately identifiable. So whilst the customization options weren’t bad in The Witcher 3 – they were certainly limited. You could tinker with a limited amount of hairstyles, you slightly change his facial scruff, and that was it really.

Whereas in Cyberpunk 2077, these are the changes you can make to V:

  • Pick your literal genitalia
  • Choose your voice
  • Make your face
  • Select your hair
  • Create your body type
  • Assign your modifications
  • Choose your character’s background

As you can see, CDPR is providing a solid platform for you to mold V however you see fit.


lifepaths in cyberpunk 2077
CD Projekt Red
3 choices, only 1 answer.

Speaking of choosing your background, that segues nicely to Lifepaths.

The Witcher 3 has a somewhat non-linear storyline in that there are different ways the story can go. But lots of the overall details are largely the same with few differences. You are Geralt, you start off with Vesemir, and you’re on a quest to find Ciri.

But the opening 30 minutes in Cyberpunk 2077 will effectively shape how your version of V will be going forward. Choosing one of the game’s Lifepaths will determine your starting location and how your character interacts with certain people and gangs.

Here are the different Lifepaths:

  • Nomad – You start in the Badlands District. You seek to create a life in Night City having moved around in squalor for years.
  • Corporate – You start in the City Centre District. You aim to leave behind the greedy, luxurious life to find something less stuck-up and repulsive.
  • Street Kid – You start in the Heywood District. You look to survive Night City having grown up in an area of constant crime, some of which you’ve committed.

Now, Cyberpunk 2077’s devs have remained tight-lipped on how many endings the game will have. But given the options at hand, we can expect to see a few variations.

A futuristic Night City replaces the sprawling kingdom of Redania

Nighty City in Cyberpunk 2077
CD Projekt Red
There’s a whole lot of neon to explore.

The setting for the two games couldn’t be more polar opposites if they tried.

The Witcher 3 is a fabulous, rich world full of gorgeous scenery that pulses through the furious winds and torrential rain. Its worst aspects are usually shrouded by disruptive mists and dull, dank, darkness.

Whereas Night City is one half eye-popping energy and spectacle, and one half abject desolation. Night City’s comparable tree feature would be neon – copious amounts of neon. Nighty City is a dense, tightly-packed City (outside of the Badlands) pumped full of detail, tall buildings, and shanty towns.

Redania was immensely pleasing on the eye and danger was generally only where you went looking for it. Night City is defined by its danger.

Cyberpunk 2077 is a brand new IP

Keanu Reeves in Cyberpunk 2077
CD Projekt Red
New IP, new, familiar faces.

What started out as a harmless board game, has now become a fully-fledged video game. Cyberpunk 2077 focuses less on die, and more on…DIE.

Gone are rule books and dice. In their place, dangerous weapons and fast, drivable cars.

The Witcher 3 released in 2015 off the back of two other video games in Andrzej Sapkowski’s popular series. So it had already had accumulated a fanbase and earned a reputation. Conversely, Cyberpunk 2077 comes off a few board games in the Cyberpunk universe that date back to 1990. So this is the first real outing, as a video game, for Cyberpunk.

Enemies are a whole different breed

An enemy in cyberpunk 2077
CD Projekt Red
Just another day.

There’s potentially nothing scarier than someone who seems normal but is warped by Cyberpsychosis.

It’s true that The Witcher 3 was full of deadly creatures from drowners to mythical Griffins. But in one sense, they are more predictable because you know what to expect with wild creatures interrupted in their habitat.

A city where all civilians are allowed to carry firearms because it’s that dangerous is another proposition. Humans/mentally deficient robots are completely unpredictable and it means that Cyberpunk will have danger lurking around every corner.

Facing an army of soldiers wielding swords and shields pales in comparison to a gang firing state-of-the-art guns.

Vehicles and combat

Sports cars in Cyberpunk 2077
CD Projekt Red
Ride in style.

Never again will you have to complain about the ineptitude of Geralt’s trusty steed – Roach.

One of the famous aspects of The Witcher 3 is Roach’s inability to function as adequate transport. Roach would frequently become enamored with trees and suddenly become stuck, despite riding at full speed. She also struggled with small jumps and various other issues.

Furthermore, whilst the mixture of Geralt’s natural combat abilities, potions, and signs were fun – guns are more fun.

Cyberpunk 2077 is a complete u-turn in terms of the technology available. Roach is replaced by vehicles we can’t wait to drive, and Igni has been replaced by fully automatic weapons. The game’s assisted firearms are more mystical in some ways than Geralt’s magic. Needless to say, Cyberpunk greatly differs in this regard.

Can complete the game without killing anyone

body bags in cyberpunk 2077
CD Projekt Red
It’s up to you to decide if you want to be the one responsible for this.

The choice is yours. How’s your conscience?

A staple of modern-day gaming is the developer’s desire to impose freedom on the player. A few games have taken this pacifist mindset and run with it. Games like Deus Ex and Undertale have revelled in offering the player this challenge. Cyberpunk 2077 is no different.

It seems a mean feat to accomplish, given that anyone can take umbrage with you at any given moment. But it’s another way in which CDPR wants to give the player that sense of freedom and liberty.

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