Cyberpunk 2077's open world will include around 75 "street stories"

By Heidi Nicholas,
It's fair to say that Cyberpunk 2077 is one of the most highly-anticipated games to release this year. Anything coming from CD Projekt Red would draw attention, after the phenomenal success of The Witcher 3, but Cyberpunk 2077 has garnered more than enough attention in its own right. Every bit of new information seems to add to the hype, and that'll surely be the case with the newest detail about the level of engagement with the game's open world: alongside main and side quests, Cybperunk 2077 will have "around 75 street stories", as well as some minor activities.

Cyberpunk 2077 bike

This comes from studio head John Mamais, in an interview with ONMFST. "There’s a couple of layers," he says when asked about the open world of Cyberpunk 2077. "There’s a passive layer, which is the vendors, then there’s the STSs, which are the street stories. I think there’s around 75 street stories. Then there’s minor activities as well." It seems that these street stories are entirely their own thing; "little quests" that are presumably smaller than side quests, but also more customised than randomly generated encounters. "There’s story but there’s not, like, advanced cinematic storytelling sequences so much. They’re a way to explore the world and level-up your character." Mamais says that "They’re all custom done", not "automatically generated. There are set templates that the guys can use but each one is customized to make them feel unique. The world’s going to be filled with that stuff. It should feel really good." Each street quest, then, should actually feel like a different experience, separate from each other, and like a real piece of the in-game world. Smaller and randomly generated quests can feel a little superficial, and sometimes a little grindy, so it's good to hear that CD Projekt Red have seemingly gone beyond this. There's apparently way more people working on open-world aspects of the game; around 15, as opposed to the two or three for the Witcher 3, so it stands to reason that the smaller additional quests will be even more immersive and full of content than CDPR's previous games.

Cyberpunk 2077

Mamais is very careful not to be drawn into giving too many details. He won't elaborate on what the post-launch content for the game could look like, but mentions again that "The Witcher model kind of worked for us". Aside from additional cosmetics and content, The Witcher 3 had two major expansions; Blood and Wine, and Hearts of Stone. Both were very highly rated for their complexity and the sheer amount of content they offered; Blood and Wine in particular was like another smaller game all in itself. When questioned about whether he means the Witcher's story packs, Mamais responds, "I’m not allowed to say what it will be but it’ll probably be something like The Witcher. I wish I could talk about it more because, for us, it’s very interesting. But we can’t." It would be unlikely, though, after spending so much time on a game which apparently has such depth and richness of story as Cyberpunk 2077, for CDPR not to then expand that world in further DLCs.

Mamais gives a few details on other aspects of the game. He mentions that CDPR have taken precautions to avoid players experiencing motion sickness while playing from a first-person perspective. The depth of field can be changed, the head-bobbing can be reduced, and "some other stuff" has been planned to avoid problems. He also adds that a third-person perspective is available, but "just in the vehicles". Fans of the original roleplaying game will, he says, recognise a lot in Cyberpunk 2077: the factions and districts of Night City, along with the city itself, the names of the corporations and of certain items, the class system and skill system, and "a lot of the lore". Witcher fans, meanwhile, can rest easy knowing that according to Mamais, "the main difference" between the two games will mostly be "the combat element." "It kind of feels similar I think because, at its heart, it’s still a RPG", Mamais says, when asked about the difference between the two. We recently learned that CDPR's other mystery AAA title was actually the multiplayer component for Cyberpunk 2077, and some fans were worried about what this meant for the game, but Mamais clarifies that they're "not mixing the two things. Totally focusing on single-player."

Cyberpunk 2077

Another cause for concern amongst fans was whether the game's delay until September would change CDPR's focus, since it would be so close to the release of Microsoft's next-gen console, Xbox Series X. Mamais addresses this too, saying that "Most AAA developers have that stuff [Xbox Series X dev tools] but we’re not focusing on that yet. We’re focusing on current gen." He does reiterate how great the game will apparently look, though. When asked about factors of the game which might have been overlooked, he's enthusiastic about the sound and the lighting, recommending a Dolby Atmos sound system and a "good TV" to appreciate both aspects. "Our director keeps talking about the real-time global illumination system", he says, "which we haven’t really seen in its full beauty yet. No one in the public has seen how it’s finally going to look. It’s going to look more breathtaking than we’ve seen so far... Also, the sound... If I were a rich gamer, I’d definitely go out and buy a Dolby Atmos system to listen to this game. It’s going to be very immersive, deep, and beautiful-sounding... It’s going to look and sound great." Despite this, he's not confident about the game's future with VR. "We tried. We were thinking about VR but, yeah, we’re not doing anything with VR. We got the VR dev kits but… Some things would work in VR but, I think, it’s not really viable yet. You’re not making a lot of money in VR yet. It’s very experimental and niche, yeah. I would like to", he says, clarifying, "I like VR but we’re not doing anything with it." He's also got good things to say about the studio's relationship with Microsoft, commenting, "We’ve had a long relationship with Microsoft. We had the Witcher 3 announcement at E3 at the Microsoft conference, so I think, given that existing relationship, it’s been easier for us to move forward with those guys."

Cyberpunk 2077 fans still have a bit of a wait ahead of them, as the game doesn't release now until September 17th. At least, if Mamais's interview is anything to go by, we should get some more information to keep us going until then. We'll keep you updated.
Heidi Nicholas
Written by Heidi Nicholas
Hey, I'm Heidi! I've just finished studying a Masters in English Literature, but I've been obsessed with gaming since long before then. I began on the PS2 with Spyro, before graduating to the Xbox 360 and disappearing into Skyrim. I'm now a loyal RPG fan, but I still like to explore other genres — when I'm not playing Assassin's Creed Odyssey, or being lured back into Red Dead Redemption 2 or The Witcher 3!