By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)
Despite CD Projekt RED‘s video game Cyberpunk 2077 being constantly delayed, thankfully publishing partner, Dark Horse Comics is not late on releasing The World of Cyberpunk 2077. Fans of the role playing game turned video game will need time to read through the voluminous tome, and by the time they’re done, they’ll be up to speed. The latest date slated for the game is Dec 10th.
This product offers everything newcomers need to know about life, the gangs and tech available in Night City. It’s less about the making of the game with concept art but more on what to expect from it narrative-wise. Not everyone will be interested in the Deluxe Edition. The slick binder makes it almost worth it, but to get one in pristine condition means scouring the book stores.
This book is “an extensive examination of the rich lore of Cyberpunk 2077.” It covers everything a newcomer needs to know for not only this game but also the pen and paper product. Knowing who some of Night City’s smooth operators can help me navigate through the tougher sides of this neon jungle. Life for a normal human isn’t easy.
“The Technology of Tomorrow” is an important chapter to know for players who wish to hack into the system. This hardcover does its best to explain the details to which the video game will not necessarily expound upon. The netrunning gear is explained with enough detail to get started. As for how it sends one’s consciousness to a digital realm–the interface involves hooking your own neural network into it–that’s a neuroscience nobody can explain yet . This aspect of the game is why this genre is beloved and “jacking in” is not exactly like the movies, The Matrix or Ready Player One.
The artwork offered is wide and varied. From its humble pen and ink drawings from the first edition to fully realized paintings in Red, this latest take elevates the art to the stratosphere! It’s patenting a colour scheme the book (RPG and video game) is famous for. In an interview with VG24/7, Marthe Jonkers, senior concept artist at CD Projekt RED said the visual identity of Cyberpunk 2077 comprises “four distinct eras: Entropism, Kitsch, Neo-Militarism, and Neo-Kitsch.”
The tongue-in-cheek fake ads in this encyclopedia of wonder are a sweet touch; it recalls how the role playing game books were laid out. Next to the comic book, Cyberpunk 2077 Trauma Team, this work is the only new material offered to sate my appetite before the digital product finally comes out.