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How The Witcher 3 Helped With Cyberpunk 2077's Combat

CD Projekt Red is using the lessons it learned with Witcher's melee combat on its new sci-fi RPG.


Following its acclaimed showings at both E3 and Gamescom, CD Projekt Red has finally released Cyberpunk 2077's gameplay demo video to the public. As such, you can now see almost a full hour of the game in action, which should give you a much better idea of what to expect. That includes a look at combat, which, as we learned back at E3, was influenced by The Witcher 3.

During GameSpot's E3 2018 Stage Show, associate design director Kyle Rowley sat down with us and discussed how the developer is using the lessons it learned from The Witcher 3 on its new sci-fi RPG, particularly with regard to its combat system.

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Now Playing: Cyberpunk 2077 - Official 48 Minute Gameplay Reveal

Cyberpunk 2077 features both ranged and melee combat, and the latter in particular benefited from the developer's work on Witcher. "We learned quite a lot from the combat in Witcher 3, and we're translating that to the lessons we learned in the gameplay about how to do melee and try to transfer that to Cyberpunk," Rowley said. "Obviously it's very different in the fact that we're now doing it from a first-person perspective rather than from a third-person, but the lessons that we learned in Witcher, we can definitely translate."

Rowley also revealed that weapons in Cyberpunk 2077 fall into three general categories: power, tech, and smart. Power weapons were described as more "traditional weapons that you would have nowadays," such as high-impact guns. "When you fire them, we may have, for example, exaggerated hit reactions and staggers to kind of emphasize the hit impacts," Rowley said.

Tech weapons, on the other hand, focus primarily on penetrating through walls, NPCs, and other objects. The final category, smart weapons, can track and follow targets around the games. As Rowley explained, these types of weapons were designed to be accessible to players, regardless of how good they are at shooters:

"Again, because we're a role-playing game and we understand some people aren't necessarily averse to twitch-based combat who like playing role-playing games, we tried to design the smart weapons around being something that people can pick up and play casually without necessarily having to be super-efficient with shooting people in the head or more twitch-based, reaction-based combat, so we're trying to cater to both audiences there with that."

Despite the prevalence of guns and the game's first-person perspective, Rowley asserted that Cyberpunk 2077 is not a shooter, but still very much an RPG. "It's a role-playing game with some shooter elements, rather than a shooter with role-playing laid on top of it. There's very deep progression systems, so all the things you'd expect from a CD Projekt game," he said.

Cyberpunk 2077 still doesn't have a release date, but it's due out for PC, PS4, and Xbox One.

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