Why Cyberpunk 2077 cannot be compared to GTA V

Why Cyberpunk 2077 cannot be compared to GTA V
We have been waiting for Cyberpunk 2077 for eight long years. Cd Projekt Red over time has accustomed us well, indeed very well, with the games of The Witcher saga, so the hopes placed in this new title were very high. However, either because of the production problems linked to the nefarious Covid-19 pandemic, or because of the excessive ambitions of a capable studio, but which perhaps does not have enough numbers among its ranks, the launch of Cyberpunk 2077 was not the best. .

This despite Cd Projekt Red's declaration of not wanting to settle for just a good game and in spite of the continuous postponements aimed at fixing above all the old gen versions of the title. The result is there for all to see: on new generation machines and, especially on PCs, Cyberpunk is that colossal videogame that everyone expected, but it still needs a cleaning up through some patches, while on older machines the game has so much so many problems, starting from the frame rate, that it can be considered a different title, obviously for the worse.

The situation is so serious that a refund campaign has even been launched. Not only is it possible to perceive a very troubled development behind us, but the inevitable comparison, raised by many, given the at least apparent presence of some elements in common, between Cyberpunk 2077 and that other giant of the videogame industry that is Grand Theft Auto. Obviously, Grand Theft Auto V, the most recent and expensive chapter of the saga, also developed over several years, supported by a very high budget, is taken as a reference point.

Who is without sin cast the first stone

Actually, even before it came out, Cyberpunk 2077 had been eyed by the gamer community as a possible rival to GTA V or even a sixth episode of the Rockstar saga that has not yet come out into the open. The temptation to put GTA V and Cyberpunk 2077 on the same level by comparing them directly is really very strong and honestly it hasn't spared me either. I admit to having proposed on my social channels a head to head between the two titles while specifying at the end that in any case the two games, although apparently similar, have two different souls.

Here instead I want to redeem myself by doing something completely different. I want to proceed in reverse, putting the record straight: Cyberpunk 2077 and GTA V are actually two dissimilar games. It was not at all easy to arrive at this position. I must admit that the development of this article has been troubled just like that of Cyberpunk 2077. So we will not have to do with a simple comparison between the two titles, but with a series of reasons why the two games should be taken each for what. they are: two entities far from each other.

The setting is really different at the start. Although the Rockstar title and Cd Projekt Red share the open world nature, each marries it in their own way: while GTA V can be considered an open world with role-playing elements, Cyberpunk 2077 should be seen rather as an RPG with open elements world. But let's proceed calmly and begin this discussion.

The context

On the one hand we have GTA V which offers a realistic setting that wants to simulate a slice of modern society immersed in a potically incorrect satire . Therefore, a partly credible present time is represented, partly taken to extremes at the level of over-the-top situations and characters which, however, perfectly trace certain existing social realities. In Cyberpunk 2077 instead we have a hypothetical world of the future that falls into the field of science fiction. Of course, it is a futuristic sci-fi, a painting that represents a possible point of arrival for our society, but it is still something imaginative and imaginary.

Although satire and politically incorrect, these elements are contextualized in a more crude and violent way than what is done in GTA V. While in the Rockstar title the realistic and satirical elements are deliberately contrasted with the aim of creating a tragicomic effect, Cyberpunk 2077 takes more seriously by integrating everything into a dystopian vision that wants to depict a moral and behavioral decline of the future society. It must also be said that Cyberpunk 2077 goes to place itself in a parallel universe compared to the real world, even going so far as to change the historical events of the years preceding the gaming events: in other words, 2021 in the world of Cyberpunk is completely different from that of ours. world.

The game map

The structure of the game world is completely different in the two titles: while in GTA V we find a map of considerable size, but more diluted, in Cyberpunk 2077 we have a more restricted setting, but much denser, thicker and full of iconic details capable of defining each area precisely.

Los Santos is also well characterized, but compared to Night City and its surroundings it has the feeling of a flatter environment. This is because GTA V chooses to develop horizontally with large surfaces and extended spaces while Cyberpunk prefers a vertical setting, made up of streets, alleys, multiple city levels that intersect each other and numerous internal spaces that can be explored, articulated and rich in detail. Also for this reason the speed of the cars is different in the two titles: in GTA V the more airy and open spaces allow greater power of the vehicles, while in Cyberpunk 2077 it was necessary to keep the vehicles at bay to allow the player to extricate himself more easily in the urban fabric of Night City.

Interaction with citizens and law enforcement agencies

In GTA V a lot is played on the interaction with the people of Los Santos who it is therefore more reactive and dynamic. The police will leave a certain space for action to the player before eliminating him and indeed, much of the fun revolves around the ever-increasing clash with the police, with the search for the fifth crime star. In Cyberpunk, on the other hand, citizens serve rather to contextualize the city and our actions. With their scripted actions they create the illusion of a lively world, but they are not expected to do more. Their interactions with the player are therefore quite basic.

The police are also different: they are very strong and overwhelming. However much a bit of partying can be done, our excessive actions will be promptly blocked. While GTA, with a liberating attitude, invites the player to do good and bad times with the world that is offered to him, in Cyberpunk 2077 the user is instead invited to enjoy the scenarios and follow the various quests.

The game environment is not the goal of our actions, but rather a container of the events that we will carry on. It occurs to me that the structure of Cyberpunk 2077 can be more easily compared to that of a Headhunter, a classic game for Dreamcast, where the phases of city exploration served more to connect the various missions than to create a separate playability.

The importance of the plot

In the two titles the plot has a different relevance. In GTA V, beyond the excellent characterization of the characters and the presence of intriguing situations, sometimes it seems that the story is more of an excuse to carry on the game actions. Instead in Cyberpunk 2077 there is a completely different feeling: it is perceived how the game actions are deeply determined by the narrative.

GTA V presents events and protagonists useful to entertain the player with a good dose of black humor and irreverence which are however only the outline of numerous well-structured missions. Instead Cyberpunk first of all has to tell a series of very well written and curated stories, then around us it builds interesting missions that connect the various events. This is true for both the main and secondary quests. GTA almost seems to be in a hurry to close the cutscenes to leave room for action, instead Cyberpunk takes its time by immersing the player in stories made up of looks, expressions and colored lights. As if that were not enough, in the game by Cd Projekt Red there are also long written insights useful to further contextualize the narrative universe in which the events take place.

The importance of dialogues

In GTA, the events are suffered in a passive way: from time to time the game is interrupted by non-interactive cinematic sequences that tell us what we need to know to advance in the next mission. Instead in Cyberpunk we are the protagonists. Through the eyes of our anti-hero we will face every dialogue and event with the possibility of choosing among the most disparate attitudes to be held based on the situations and characters.

We can be diplomatic or aggressive, altruistic or devoted to vile money, careless or empathic, we can flirt or snub, in short, we can shape the protagonist of the game according to our will by following the logic that each choice corresponds to a consequence. In the title of Cd Projekt we will even be able to choose the background of our character, which will determine a series of substantial changes in situations and dialogues. In GTA all this does not exist and does not even want to exist. The approach of the Rockstar title is lighter and more light-hearted: the extras and situations are given, they must be accepted as they are. There are no crossroads or bifurcations, but solid tracks to follow to carry the whole machine forward.

Character development

Also in GTA there is the possibility to evolve your own character , but it is a secondary and essentially automatic aspect: the more you do something, the more you improve in that activity. For example, the more you drive, the better you become behind the wheel, the more you run, the more athletic you become. But the matter ends here. In Cyberpunk 2077, however, the attention paid to the development of the protagonist is essential. All gameplay revolves around the character's abilities that can be upgraded and unlocked with experience points, just as you would expect from an RPG.

In GTA, you can do it all right away. You can take the car you want from whoever you want and, with the right weapons, you can take on anyone. In Cyberpunk, on the other hand, a lot depends on the characteristics of your character. Stealing a vehicle requires burglar skills or some physical strength. Fights if you don't have the right armor, adequate healing and sufficient characteristics can even be impossible. In short, you cannot throw yourself into the fray with your head down, the character must be properly prepared.

The different approach to gameplay and visuals

GTA is basically a title born in the third person to which a first view has been added over the years. Cyberpunk instead was born directly as a first person game also equipped with a third mode designed for driving. The first person of GTA is full of animations and details, but it will be used above all to aim better, also due to a certain heaviness in the management of the movements. Cyberpunk, on the other hand, was conceived to be played with a functional and fluid fps view.

This choice certainly rewards the efforts made by CD Projekt Red on a visual level and allows you to admire the detail and variety more closely exaggerated characters and various assets. From this perspective, the approach to gameplay also changes a lot, which never allows you to have total control of the situation and also favors stealth dynamics. In this regard it must be said that even the Rockstar title sometimes offers a more silent resolution of the missions, but it is noted that in Cyberpunk 2077 the possibility of alternatively having an aggressive approach made of weapons leveled weapons or purely stealth rooted in silent movements is better delineated. , rear assaults and remote hacking.

Code stability

Cyberpunk 2077 has been heavily criticized for bugs and issues encountered upon its release, especially on old guard consoles. However, it should be considered that the launch of GTA V was different: first it was released for old gen and then, only in a later period, for next gen platforms.

The fact that Cyberpunk 2077 was scheduled to be released on numerous machines simultaneously may have certainly created some problems. The Rockstar team was also certainly more proportionate to the goal to be achieved than that of CD Projekt Red and at the time of the development of GTA V there was no ongoing Covid-19 pandemic to complicate matters. Fortunately, however, the Polish developer has reconfirmed its commitment to fix the game through constant corrective patches, so despite everything, Cyberpunk 2077 will also be able to reach its optimal form.

In Conclusion

Stando from the considerations just made it emerges that it is not possible to carry out a real direct comparison between the two titles. It could only be done by considering both simply as free roaming games, but that would be an understatement. In Cyberpunk 2077, as I have already said, there is a whole component relating to the choices, the dialogues and the development of the character that make the production Cd Projekt Red strongly different from the Rockstar one. Then it must be said that in terms of content and quality, the Polish developer is certainly working hard to add content and make improvements. The next gen upgrade and the online component must also arrive.

It is as if we were facing two fighters who practice different disciplines. As much as the wrestlers may resemble each other, it is necessary to consider that everyone follows their own personal philosophy. Each one excels in his own discipline and it is impossible to determine who is the strongest since a direct confrontation in the ring, given the numerous differences between one fighting style and the other, would be something impossible.

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