Cyberpunk 2077 is pretty fun. Other than the time it corrupted eight hours worth of both manual and autosaves, I’m enjoying it. It’s a solid game (as long as you aren’t playing it on a base console, apparently).
However I would not say that the game lives up to the hype.
To be fair though, how could it? Based solely on the press and fandom hype over the past half a decade, you’d be forgiven for thinking Cyberpunk was going to be a transcendant RPG, an experience the likes of which we’ve never seen before. It wasn’t just going to raise the bar, it was going to take the bar and fuck your girlfriend with it, and you’d be grateful for your proximity to said fucking.
Could it have been that? I don’t know, but I doubt it. That’s the detrimental effect that runaway hype has on video games. It can set expectations, or at least hope, so high that the only place to land is below it, in disappontmentville. Not only that, but the emotional investment that the “fans” make in the game’s potential turns accepting the possibility of anything less into a personal affront.
The Cyberpunk we got is a realistic mess. Some pretty decent, if not inconsistent graphics (again, provided you’re on the right hardware). Night City is fun to travel around, but I wouldn’t say it’s necessarily doing the “open, living world” thing any better than games like GTA. The gunplay is, at best, adequate, and the leveling/loot system is pretty standard fare. The story and dialogue has been great thus far, though there are a lot of weird bugs that do detract from it at times (example: I interrogated some sleazeball regarding the whereabouts of a girl he’d sold, and I acquired the information I needed. Having no further use for him, I decided to kill him just ’cause, and after doing so the game/quest progress re-aligned itself and acted like I’d never talked to him first, simply killed him. It then made me search through his computer to find the exact information I’d already gotten).
I did lose a bunch of progress to something that keeps corrupting save files, but otherwise none of the bugs I’ve encountered have ruined my ability to play the game; just made my time with it occasionally more quirky.
As I said at the outset, overall I’m enjoying my time with Cyberpunk. I have it up there in company with Anthem, Andromeda, and others, and sure, you could argue that some of them are good games, some are bad games, some are bad games that became good, etc. Some of them launched with very real issues, and some were worse than others. But the comic isn’t about whether the game is fun or not, good or not. It’s about whether it could measure up to the hype, and in all of those cases I believe the answer is no. There are very few games that can actually live up to their pre-release hype, for a variety of reasons, yet the publishers all insist on sending them up that mountain only for the nigh inevitable tumble back down to earth. Back to reality.