Cloudpunk Reviews

  • DJ KaboomDJ Kaboom511,445
    11 Jan 2021
    13 0 0
    With all the extreme hype surrounding Cyberpunk's late and shaky launch, it's easy for similarly styled IPs to get much attention, let alone from the double-A world, but Cloudpunk, which launched in April 2020, is worth a look, and maybe a lot more.

    Make no mistake, Cloudpunk's Developer, Ion Lands, minces no words with how much they doused this title in the cyberpunk stylings made famous in the 80s and early 90s. Cloudpunk's look and feel is derivative in every possible way, borrowing heavily from Blade Runner, Tron, Deus Ex, The Neuromancer, and other pop culture influences, but especially Blade Runner, right down to the perma-night/rain setting, the hover car, and the unmistakable Vangelis-esque score backing it all up. The influences are so obvious that it gets away with taking these liberties as something of an homage.

    The story arc is simple enough: you play as Rania, a courier working for a no-questions-asked delivery surface of dubious reputation, with sparse instruction for pickup and delivery -just simple quest markers and occasional banter on the car's radio with your dispatcher and assorted clients. The completion of each delivery provides small advances in the game's narrative, and upgrade paths for your vehicle and apartment, though neither have much measurable impact on the game.

    Though overall a fun game, Cloudpunk suffers from rinse and repeat syndrome from the pickup and dropoff mechanic loop, and though navigating through the city can be a lot of fun, the repetition can be fatiguing in spite of the varying cargo and passengers. Additionally, the voice acting was serviceable at best, and often fell well below that. As scripted, Rania's story was fascinating, but the voice acting often missed its mark. Even worse was Camus, Raina's dog/car A.I.; his banter with Raina could have been so much more engrossing and even touching had the acting been more consistent. In contrast, the grizzled dispatcher, referred to as "Control," was masterfully voiced, and as such he stole every scene.

    Gripes not withstanding, Cloudpunk is a solid feather in Ion Lands cap. Though a bit simplistic and repetitive, the sound design and music create a backdrop for an open world that pulls you in, in a way that even the mighty Cyberpunk struggles with. Give this one a spin.