The Map Isn’t as Big as The Witcher 3’s, But It’s More Dense
I have fond memories of trawling across The Continent with Geralt and Roach in The Witcher 3, often spending more time riding around exploring than actually completing quests. This time around, though, in CDPR’s latest action-RPG, the rolling green pastures have been replaced by the neon-soaked streets of Cyberpunk 2077’s Night City, as well as its barren desert surroundings, The Badlands.
In terms of sheer size, Night City and The Badlands don’t match up to the total area of The Witcher 3’s landmass. Instead, CD Projekt Red has focused on cramming more detail into a smaller map, with towering buildings and all manner of urban nooks and crannies to explore.
These towering buildings add a sense of verticality and huge indoor sections that make up the lack of sprawling fields and varied outdoor areas that The Witcher 3 brings to the table. There are also more buildings you can simply go inside, rather than having buildings with impenetrable doors.
Each of Night City’s six districts has a ‘Fixer’ that players will be contacted by about available Gigs in the area. These are essentially side quests, but you’ll also have NCPD Scanner Hustles which see you taking on all kinds of different criminal-busting activities for the police. The perfect side quest for a mercenary like V.
Additionally, you can take on bounties, bringing in wanted citizens of Night City dead or alive for a reward, or pick up ‘Shards’ which are lore-based collectibles telling tales of Night City’s history or other random short stories.
Ultimately, Night City’s condensed content makes for a more immersive experience that comes to life when seeing and doing all of it from a first-person perspective. Throw in the various NPCs going about their daily lives, and the many Gangs of Night City causing chaos on a daily basis and you’ve got a city that feels like a truly living, breathing open-world.
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