Cyberpunk 2077 is the upcoming first-person RPG from CD Projekt Red. I know that most people reading this will know literally everything I’m gonna write in this first paragraph, so apologies. The futuristic role playing game features a bunch of gameplay features, and will likely star the various qualities we all love The Witcher 3 for. However, perhaps the coolest, at least in my opinion, is the ability to choose your origin. There are three to choose from. Nomad, Street Kid, and my personal choice – Corpo.
Today’s article is dedicated to why I (hi, I’m Zack) will be choosing Corpo! If you somehow don’t know what Cyberpunk 2077 is then I’m curious about how comfortable that rock you’re living under is.
“Cyberpunk is going one step further…”
For everyone else, you’re obviously aware that Cyperpunk 2077 will allow you to customise your character, including strange things like your genitals. If you’re curious. Now, many RPGs allow you to give your character some backstory. Mass Effect let you decide Shepard’s military career for instance. Cyberpunk is going one step further though, and actually having it affect where you start in the game.
Example, picking “Nomad” will have you starting the game outside of the walls of Night City, in the “Badlands”. “Street Kid” will have you playing as a person who’s grown up and gotten comfortable with the various criminal elements of Night City. Each has a different set of surrounding characters and a different childhood.
The subject of today’s article, Corpo, has you starting as a character embedded in the world of the suits and business transactions of the corporations of Night City, specifically the Arasaka Corporation. Not to mention their shady dealings with other companies.
“Corpo offers a path less trodden by most games.”
When I first saw these origin choices, I gravitated toward Street Kid. This is because the idea of already being “in” with the less than above board characters and factions sounded like fun. However, I’ve since realised that Corpo offers a path less trodden by most games.
RPGs rarely give you the opportunity to start at the top. The common theme for role playing games is that you start at the bottom, build your character, overcome great odds, and eventually end up on the top of the pile. Mass Effect has you starting as a fairly low-key military hero, albeit a famous one. Dragon Age: Inquisition has you starting as a nobody in the grand scheme of things. In The Witcher series you’re a pretty well known Witcher, but with no real interest in social or political power. Disco Elysium grants you the persona of a depressed cop, who happens to be an alcoholic.
Corpo instead gives the player the pleasure of already being part of the big dogs. There’s not a LOT of info regarding each starting point, but it is fairly clear that all origins will eventually merge at the same point in terms of story. Quite how long each origin remains unique for is undetermined.
But the idea of starting somewhere at the top of the metaphorical food chain is something of acute interest to me. For a variety of reasons, I can see Nomads and Street Kids being somewhat… similar. Capable of holding their own, not comfortable in upper class arenas, looked down upon by the corporations and other higher up factions.
“Corpo seems the most unique or fresh take on an RPG starting point.”
I could be waaay off base but, for now, Corpo seems the most unique or fresh take on an RPG starting point. All we really know regarding the player character in this scenario is that you’re a “fixer” of sorts. You’re not RIGHT at the top, granted, but you answer to the people who are. Technically, you’re Arisaka “Counter Intel”, which means you help keep the people at the top, stay at the top.
Definitely stole that last line from the trailer. #NoRagrets.
Most people are used to having to struggle in RPGs. Start with nothing, end with everything. The idea of starting Cyberpunk 2077 in a high end job, for a high end company, with high end stakes? Colour me extremely intrigued.
There’s a bunch of interesting ideas that could play into it as well. The nature of a high profile job like Corpo is that mistakes aren’t tolerated. You’re constantly living on a precipice, one disaster away from screwing up everything you’ve worked for. This is showcased in the trailer as well, showing your character V throwing up in what looks to be a work bathroom, in close proximity to a spent pill pot. All while talking to himself, I think, about the stresses of his job.
The other two character’s “Lifepaths” might feature challenges like rival gangs, friendships, getting arrested, and other such “ordinary” stuff.
Whereas I can see Corpo being a little more “subterfugey” if that makes sense. Trying to do your job without ending up dead. Coping with the stresses of your illegal (probably) work, while also trying to not be absolutely dobbed in by your paranoid bosses.
“…if we know CD Projekt Red at all, we know they don’t do things by halves.”
I could be expecting too much from Cyberpunk 2077, and maybe after a few hours every character hits the same point and we go from there. But if we know CD Projekt Red at all, we know they don’t do things by halves. So I’m going in with strong hopes that these origin stories have lasting effects on the gameplay and your personal story.
There’s also gameplay to think of. While I can picture Nomads being really good with their hands and at driving, I can see a Corpo being good at overcoming conversational barriers. But maybe not as good as Street Kid, who might better hold a conversation with the shady underworld.
“…you’ve finally been asked to “zero” someone,”
I can’t imagine a guy in a suit will be particularly fantastic with his hands, and will prefer to use guns. Your role as a “fixer” isn’t well described, but I also can’t imagine that you’ll be used to handling dirty work. In fact, in the trailer it’s referenced that you’ve finally been asked to “zero” someone, which I assume is slang for murder. It’s not clear if it’s your first time, but I can also see Corpo’s combat being far less reliant on huge gunfights, and instead on assassinations and quiet psychotic murder.
Maybe your social standing will help open doors, or your bank account will help keep people quiet.
I don’t necessarily know the depths that these “lifepaths” will take you in Cyberpunk 2077. A lot of what I’ve speculated about today is based purely on how I interpret the lifestyles and motivations behind each of the V characters you can pick. For me, Corpo sounds like a highly strung and more nuanced version of Cyberpunk 2077, and that’s the version that interests me the most.
What life path will YOU be picking when Cyberpunk 2077 launches on 19th November? Let us know in the comments!
I’ve been playing video games in some form or another for nearly two decades. My favourite campaign of all time is Halo: Combat Evolved and my favourite multiplayer of all time is Overwatch, with a dash of Halo 3. Huge lover of everything gaming, no matter the platform or source, and I enjoy a story driven campaign like nothing else!