Players will be suiting up as V in Cyberpunk 2077, but can CD Projekt Red's game be played in third-person?
The time is finally here as Cyberpunk 2077 is taking a leap to the future and dropping into the neon-splashed world of Night City for more blood, breasts, and bullets than you can shake a cybernetic arm at.
To say there's been a growing fanbase for Cyberpunk 2077 ahead of its release would be an understatement, and as CD Projekt Red finally lets us explore, there are still plenty of questions. With a sprawling open world and a game that will take tens of hours (if not hundreds) to complete, you'd better get used to exploring this warped landscape.
As modern games flip between first and third-person perspectives, players are dying to know how the sci-fi RPG will be played. There's a lot of work that's gone into character customisation, but with an emphasis on up-close combat, can you play Cyberpunk 2077 in third-person?
Will Cyberpunk 2077 be third-person?
When it comes to your day-to-day traversing of Night City, you'll be locked into first-person. There's been a rise of popularity in first-person shooters as everything from Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War to VALORANT and Doom Eternal have adopted these practices. Then again, there are those who prefer Fortnite and Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales' point of view where you get to see your character and their customisable wardrobe.
Cyberpunk 2077 will stick to first-person unless you're driving a vehicle. Putting it simply, it would be a lot harder to motor around Night City when you're stuck in the driver's seat view. Also, it would take away from all those years (yes years) of work that designers have put into creating the city's imaginative backdrop.
There's been some backlash against a largely third-person story. Let's remember that CD Projekt Red is known as the studio behind The Witcher games, which have let you explore their own open world in all their third-person glory. Thankfully, the studio is trying to make sure everyone is happy.
Speaking to Wccftech, UI Coordinator Alvin Liu expanded on this as he told potential players, "With the first-person perspective, we are able to do a lot of new stuff, we can do much more immersive dialogue for example compared to the last game (The Witcher 3) where it was kind of obvious when you were going into combat because you saw the black bars, the camera would move.
"But in this game, since it's first-person, literally you can shoot someone within a second. You pull the gun, and you're immediately shooting people. That to us is really important and really immersive because it feels like danger. It was one of the big reasons why we actually switched from third-person".
Why isn't Cyberpunk 2077 third-person?
The issue surrounding the techy title's third-person perspective (or lack of) has been explained by the developers. In 2018, Lead Level Designer Peter Gelencser defended the decision to stick with first-person and told IGN, "First and foremost, I really enjoy all the attention the subject is getting, because it's important.
"This has been an educated decision. The first-person point of view is there so you can see things happening up close, and so you can really interact with things in a visceral manner with the game world".
Even if it's not the outcome everyone was hoping for, at least there's plenty of time to explore Night City and its six distinct districts from behind the wheels of a car. Vehicles are a big part of Cyberpunk 2077, and as the E3 2019 demo showed, the transition between first and third-person was pretty seamless.
There's no escaping the popularity of first-person shooters right now, and yes, it will provide a more immersive version of Cyberpunk 2077. We'll have to wait and see just how accessible these perspective options are, but for the time being, you'll have to get used to taking out enemies through the crosshairs of V's impressive arsenal instead of looking at their backside for the entirety of Cyberpunk 2077's epic runtime.
Images via CD Projekt Red