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Is Cyberpunk 2077 an RPG?

Is Cyberpunk 2077 an RPG™?


  • Total voters
    197

Gerrard

Arcane
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Nov 5, 2007
Messages
12,193
CDPR doesn't call it an RPG - they correctly call it "an open-world, action-adventure story". So why are we even questioning this, please erase both "yes" options.
Yet they still put it in the RPG category on Steam.
I'm not 100% sure on this, but afaik the tags of a game are mostly decided on by people selecting tags.
Maybe the developer decides initial tags/placement, but after that, it all just becomes a matter of how many people "vote" for which tags.

Not that it matters what the devs themselves call it as long as everyone else calls it an RPG...
Does the "Game Genre" change based on tags? I'm pretty sure it's decided by whoever puts the game in the store.
 

undecaf

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Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2
It doesn’t feel like one to me at all, more like if Witcher had raped Far Cry with GTA filming it.

But if, for some reason, it was one, it certainly is not doing a good job at being one.
 
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MajorMace

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Can't you guys just admit that getting hyped for cyberpunk (lol) was a mistake and let this banal game rest until some definitive edition makes it an ok graphical novel ?
 

undecaf

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Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2
Can't you guys just admit that getting hyped for cyberpunk (lol) was a mistake

Sure, it’s just a tad frustrating that what happened here with Cyberpunk 2020 to 2077 is almost exactly what happened with Fallout 2 to Fallout 3.
 

Pearass

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Can't you guys just admit that getting hyped for cyberpunk (lol) was a mistake

Sure, it’s just a tad frustrating that what happened here with Cyberpunk 2020 to 2077 is almost exactly what happened with Fallout 2 to Fallout 3.

I imagine that old school fans of Cyberpunk 2020 must be pretty let down. I suppose that was inevitable though. For what it's worth, I think the lore is one of the best parts of the game.
 
Possibly Retarded The Real Fanboy
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It's modern crpg, and more the experiment than actual classic crpg, maybe too much action, like in modern Fallouts.
I think of it like modern The Omikron: Nomad Soul game. Overall it is good game and very mediocre crpg.
 

KK1001

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Joined
Mar 30, 2015
Messages
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On a continuum from "RPG" to "Not-RPG," I would say it is an action adventure shooter with RPG elements (borderlands looting, LARPing skill checks, and very amorphous RPG system that smooths out any edges of tabletop or better RPGs). It definitely exceeds more at not being an RPG than it does at using RPG systems.
 

toro

Arcane
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Apr 14, 2009
Messages
14,152
CP2077 is a straight looter shooter designed around MMORPG principles.
 

DalekFlay

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If an RPG is character design and systems over player skill then lol of course not.

If an RPG is player choice impacting the world and story then not really, choices seem 95% flavor dialog in my experience with some minor stuff like Royce/Stout being exceptions.

If an RPG is stat and perk choices that define a playstyle then I'd say yes, more or less, though the limited impact of many of these choices would make it a poor RPG.

If an RPG is leveled enemies and loot then yes.

I wrote this pretty early in the game and after 60+ hours now I'd still say it's pretty spot on.

It's obvious they were aiming for an open world Deus Ex and I think they achieved that in some ways, like having many different ways to get into a building and to the goal. I'm struggling to compare it to Deus Ex when it comes to story choice and consequence though. Deus Ex has those great moments like whether to save Paul or not, and the pilot girl in Human Revolution, but I wouldn't say it has anything in the realm of Witcher 2's alternate second act. Cyberpunk's main quest really feels like a movie with only flavor choices, but I do know there are at least some choices that change things like whether to use Stout's chip or not. There is even a Deus Ex homage later in the game I won't spoil, that seems to have significant impact on the ending. Overall does it compare to Deus Ex in how open it feels though? No it does not. I really wonder how much of that is the game design, 80% of it being checklist work with little story, distracting you from the good moments it does have.
 

potatojohn

Arcane
Joined
Jan 2, 2012
Messages
2,646
Overall does it compare to Deus Ex in how open it feels though? No it does not.
I mean, this sounds like you watched a pretentious youtube video and never played Deus Ex.

Deus Ex has a very cool theme, but it's just a completely linear FPS with a few choices to make and even those are completely cosmetic.

The levels are very game-y compared to 2077, and the sequels are even worse.

To say that it "feels" more open than 2077 is just ridiculous.
 

DalekFlay

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I mean, this sounds like you watched a pretentious youtube video and never played Deus Ex...

To say that it "feels" more open than 2077 is just ridiculous.

Deus Ex is in my holy trinity and one of the main reasons I played video games past adolescence. Obviously Deus Ex is not really an open world game, that's not what I meant. I meant open in the sense of the player having options and freedom to play the game their way and define JC's goals and morals. Cyberpunk offers great infiltration gameplay in relatively well designed maps, with a SHIT TON of quality assets and world building. However it doesn't feel as free and open to the player gameplay wise, for a variety of reasons I've already gone into. Lack of reactivity, lack of a satisfying sense of progression outside the main quest, lack of impactful dialog choices, a grindy loot and leveling system that feels like it has minimal impact, etc.
 

gurugeorge

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Strap Yourselves In
Jesus Christ do we really need another thread on this game? (Says he, participating in another thread on the game :) )

As with most man-made things (as opposed to most things of nature) there's no crisp, essentialist definition of "RPG."

However, the closest one can come to crispiness here is to take all games to be simulations, defined by a) their scope (which may be more or less limited) and b) how much they fail to be simulations and are forced into abstraction because of the technological limitations of the day. In terms of that definition, then RPGs are simulations which aim to have the widest possible scope (i.e. they aim to be total simulations).

In that case, then CP77 is an RPG, a fairly poor one in some ways (in terms of some of the gameplay mechanics and the progression system) a very good one in other ways (in terms of art design and graphical versimilitude).

The real clash here is between realtime control and turn-based control. You can have a game with very high degree of versimilitude so long as you represent a lot of it abstractly and sacrifice a) the feeling of realtime control and b) graphics with high versimilitude. Many here on the Codex prefer the type of game where the simulation is bountiful but abstract, and graphics representative only as much as is necessary to support the exercise of imagination in that context; but a sizeable number of people are happy with a game that represents less, but represents it graphically, and with realtime control.

But you can like both. My personal GOTY is Troubleshooter, which is turn-based, and has a truly extraordinary system of simulation at the abstract level in its build/progression system. But despite its flaws and problems I've also enjoyed a lot of CP77. I've spent about 60 hours in it (maybe 100 or so if I count the other chars), so I must have enjoyed something. And I hope that one day it will be finished and polished and become the game it was probably on track to be before they re-jigged it to stuff Keanu in it everywhere. OTOH I've spent about 600 hours on Troubleshooter, so clearly for me it's been a more engaging game, and is more of an RPG. And before that I spent probably a couple of hundred hours on PF:K.

But though I prefer those games, I don't hate CP77, I don't feel like it's trying to take away my toys, I wouldn't utterly deny its right to be called an RPG, and my feeling for it is more wistful melancholy for what could have been.
 

thesheeep

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However, the closest one can come to crispiness here is to take all games to be simulations
You are confusing RPGs with simulations.
There's already a genre for simulations: It is called "simulation". Of which RPGs are not a subset.
Games can be both, though, I'd say they are one of the few genres that don't have to reduce each other's share like e.g. Action and RPG do.

The essential RPG identifier always was and will be: Outcomes of actions are determined not by physical player skills, but by the underlying mechanics, which are influenced by the player's choices. In other words, it's the character(s) that does actions, not the player.
However, these abstractions are not technical limitations or flaws, but willful choices of game design. They are the entire point of the genre: To allow meaningful player choices/agenda through an abstracted system (usually character & combat system).

In a simulation, you could very much have the player determine all the actions through physical skill.
Imagine, e.g. a racing sim via steering wheel setup. It would clearly be a simulation, but could never be considered an RPG.
If, however, you didn't directly control the character's actions but only issued indirect commands and an underlying system determined the outcome (say, a racing driver character system), you could have a probably very unfun racing RPG on your hands. Which would now be both a simulation and an RPG.
If you now took all the simulation aspects away (simulated movement of cars, physics, etc.) but kept the indirect command issuing & character system - it would no longer be a simulation, but still an RPG. And a probably terrible game, but that's besides the point.
 

502

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yes.png
 

gurugeorge

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Strap Yourselves In
The essential RPG identifier always was and will be: Outcomes of actions are determined not by physical player skills, but by the underlying mechanics, which are influenced by the player's choices. In other words, it's the character(s) that does actions, not the player.
However, these abstractions are not technical limitations or flaws, but willful choices of game design. They are the entire point of the genre: To allow meaningful player choices/agenda through an abstracted system (usually character & combat system).

And the abstracted system represents what?

I understand that you're using traditional definitions of "simulation" and "RPG" here, but to me (though I can happily talk in those terms too) those are artifacts of the evolution of game design.

When I look at what the ancient developers of yore said about what they were doing, about 90% of the time it's clear that they were trying to simulate a virtual world and a virtual character interacting with that world, controlled (and/or given its qualities, as you say) by the player. Whatever "systems" they came up with as "gameplay" were just compromises in struggling with the technology of the time. But we fell in love with those systems because they captivated us when we were young, and so we measure everything in terms of them. But they were just an artifact of limitation.

IOW, because developers can't yet fully simulate a virtual world whose "rules" are completely transparent and work like the real world (but plus magic, dragons or spaceships or whatever), they are FORCED to turn interactions into the abstracted toy problems with tightly bounded rules that we call "gameplay." And as young nerds growing up with these games, we got used to the language of these various forms of "gameplay." But that's precisely what annoys normies when they encounter videogames ("but why can't I just ...?"): whatever simulationist aspect most obviously exists (usually in terms of graphics) leads them to expect that the game rules will be like real world rules; but they're not, they're tightly circumscribed by whatever the "game logic" is. As gamers we're used to that, but it's quite jarring for normies, because they tend to think that games are much more sophisticated than they really are, especially if there's a lot of versimilitude in the graphics.

However, at the same time one must note that, at a certain point, developers (and players) can become interested in those toy problems for their own sake, and develop (and play) games as toy problems without much reference to simulation, or with only the most vestigial reference to simulation, so you got a certain type of game style like puzzle games, or Tetris or that kind of thing, and it becomes a genre of its own. (And that ties back to earlier developments of games as pastimes. Yet if you look at the history there, there's usually some simulationist concept there too, limited by much more primitive technology.)

It all comes down to this: we know (from psychology studies) that the "secret of happiness" is actually quite simple: you try and achieve something that's just on the border of your capabilities, that pushes you a bit, and then if you "win" you get a jag of happiness. So games are simulations that create a miniature world, a virtual world, in which success is somewhat easier to find than in real life, so they make you happy more frequently than the real world does.
 

thesheeep

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And the abstracted system represents what?
Whatever the designer intents to represent.
What kind of weird question is that?

However, at the same time one must note that, at a certain point, developers (and players) can become interested in those toy problems for their own sake, and develop (and play) games as toy problems without much reference to simulation, or with only the most vestigial reference to simulation, so you got a certain type of game style like puzzle games, or Tetris or that kind of thing, and it becomes a genre of its own.
And in exactly this way the genre of RPGs came to be. From the original table top RPGs (defined by the abstraction layer between player and character) to the digital platform.
It is defined by the common attributes between all games that have been in this genre when it first came to be.
And these common attributes are fairly few and haven't changed an inch since then - because they are still perfectly valid and applicable.

but to me those are artifacts of the evolution of game design.
That's just theorycrafting for the sake of theorycrafting.
Genre definitions are strict and measurable, or they are useless.

People develop RPGs with the intent of developing RPGs, not with the intent of developing a simulation that falls short of their goals.
That might be what some developers have tried initially (definitely not all of them), and were limited by the tech at the time, but thankfully intent doesn't matter here, only results do.

I don't give a damn what "normies" think about games or genres - they either know their shit or they don't. That most don't is the entire problem behind everything being called "RPG" by people nowadays for absolutely no reason beyond literal interpretation of the word "role play", aka "you play a role". Some go a step further and call anything an RPG if any kind of stat appears on the screen at any point - still falls short, but at least there was some thinking involved.

Truly, how wonderful it would be if the genre was not called something that can be so easily misinterpreted and has been so commonly dragged through the mud, but unfortunately this term is what we have.
Maybe we need something latin-sounding.

It all comes down to this: we know (from psychology studies) that the "secret of happiness" is actually quite simple: you try and achieve something that's just on the border of your capabilities, that pushes you a bit, and then if you "win" you get a jag of happiness. So games are simulations that create a miniature world, a virtual world, in which success is somewhat easier to find than in real life, so they make you happy more frequently than the real world does.
You should go out more often.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Sep 25, 2013
Messages
651
However, the closest one can come to crispiness here is to take all games to be simulations
You are confusing RPGs with simulations.
There's already a genre for simulations: It is called "simulation". Of which RPGs are not a subset.
Games can be both, though, I'd say they are one of the few genres that don't have to reduce each other's share like e.g. Action and RPG do.

The essential RPG identifier always was and will be: Outcomes of actions are determined not by physical player skills, but by the underlying mechanics, which are influenced by the player's choices. In other words, it's the character(s) that does actions, not the player.
However, these abstractions are not technical limitations or flaws, but willful choices of game design. They are the entire point of the genre: To allow meaningful player choices/agenda through an abstracted system (usually character & combat system).

In a simulation, you could very much have the player determine all the actions through physical skill.
Imagine, e.g. a racing sim via steering wheel setup. It would clearly be a simulation, but could never be considered an RPG.
If, however, you didn't directly control the character's actions but only issued indirect commands and an underlying system determined the outcome (say, a racing driver character system), you could have a probably very unfun racing RPG on your hands. Which would now be both a simulation and an RPG.
If you now took all the simulation aspects away (simulated movement of cars, physics, etc.) but kept the indirect command issuing & character system - it would no longer be a simulation, but still an RPG. And a probably terrible game, but that's besides the point.
By strictly applying the principles you outlined, Football Manager is indeed an RPG.
 

thesheeep

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However, the closest one can come to crispiness here is to take all games to be simulations
You are confusing RPGs with simulations.
There's already a genre for simulations: It is called "simulation". Of which RPGs are not a subset.
Games can be both, though, I'd say they are one of the few genres that don't have to reduce each other's share like e.g. Action and RPG do.

The essential RPG identifier always was and will be: Outcomes of actions are determined not by physical player skills, but by the underlying mechanics, which are influenced by the player's choices. In other words, it's the character(s) that does actions, not the player.
However, these abstractions are not technical limitations or flaws, but willful choices of game design. They are the entire point of the genre: To allow meaningful player choices/agenda through an abstracted system (usually character & combat system).

In a simulation, you could very much have the player determine all the actions through physical skill.
Imagine, e.g. a racing sim via steering wheel setup. It would clearly be a simulation, but could never be considered an RPG.
If, however, you didn't directly control the character's actions but only issued indirect commands and an underlying system determined the outcome (say, a racing driver character system), you could have a probably very unfun racing RPG on your hands. Which would now be both a simulation and an RPG.
If you now took all the simulation aspects away (simulated movement of cars, physics, etc.) but kept the indirect command issuing & character system - it would no longer be a simulation, but still an RPG. And a probably terrible game, but that's besides the point.
By strictly applying the principles you outlined, Football Manager is indeed an RPG.
Thankfully, I didn't say that the essential identifier I mentioned is the only one.
Obviously, you don't really play any tangible roles in these games (or XCOM, for that matter) so they are not RPGs.

Having your "avatar" as a tangible entity within the game is another criteria - but one I consider so obvious I didn't even mention. My mistake, I guess.

Honestly, though, at this rate I'm just waiting for some official IGN review to call some Airport Tycoon game a "pilot RPG".
 

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