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CDPR Quest Designer Talks Inspiration, Questlines, and DLC in Interview

  • Author: Daniel Downey
  • Date: November 8, 2020

Senior Quest Designer Patrick Mills was recently interviewed by Collider.com, and the interview had quite a few interesting tidbits about the (hopefully) soon to be released Cyberpunk 2077. Mills shared where a lot of the inspiration for CP2077 came from, and spoke about the challenges of creating the kind of story-driven experience they are aiming for. Mills also spoke about player choice, and on CDPR’s DLC plans for CP2077.

Night City Inspo

The ambiance of Cyberpunk 2077‘s Night City is arguably one of the game’s biggest selling points, and the game’s creators have drawn from a wide variety of source material in recreating the TTRPG’s dangerous dystopian metropolis. Some were fairly obvious cyberpunk classics, but others may surprise you. Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner was mentioned first and foremost in the interview, but Mills gave the little-known “noir-musical” Streets of Fire even more credit for influencing the original Cyberpunk 2020 TTRPG. We checked out the trailer for Streets, and it looks like something worth putting on your watch list — assuming 50’s rock-and-roll, Willem Dafoe, and noir are your thing.

Streets Of Fire Willem DaFoe Cyberpunk 2077 inspiration
Willem Dafoe’s character in Streets of Fire wouldn’t look too out of place in Night City CREDIT: Streets of Fire, Universal Pictures

In the interview, Mills actually credits noir in general as a bigger influence on the development of Cyberpunk 2077 than Science Fiction, which isn’t too surprising when you consider the overall vibe of Night City; the game may be set in the future, but Cyberpunk 2077 is ultimately a dark, gritty crime game before it is a Sci-Fi game.

Anyone who’s seen the 1970 film The Warriors probably find Night City’s gangs, with their propensity for dressing alike and spray painting their name everywhere, to be familiar. The gangs from the novel Neuromancer and the ’95 film Johnny Mnemonic are also credited as sources of inspiration. Additional unsurprising inspirations include the Japanese animated films Akira and Ghost in the Shell, with one set piece in Cyberpunk 2077 even being an explicit reference to Ghost in the Shell 2: Innocence.

The Warriors Night City gang cyberpunk 2077 inspiration
Rocking no cyberware, a bold choice CREDIT: The Warriors, Paramount Pictures

Mills was quick to give credit where it was due, however, and pointed out that the pen-and-paper role-playing game Cyberpunk 2020 — first released in 1988 — was the main source of material for CP2077.

Quests and Player Choice in Cyberpunk 2077

We’ve learned in previous interviews that the way you end missions, even sidequests, can have a dramatic impact on the main storyline. Patrick Mills confirmed this in the interview, and talked a bit about what sets CD Projekt Red games apart from other open-world games:

 …we aim to give the player a deep, personal story with extremely high quality while combining that with a compelling open world and believable activities that don’t spoil the narrative content or waste the player’s time.

A lofty goal, but considering that the mini-game Gwent turned into its own full fledged game, CDPR has proven they can make deep, meaningful content outside the main narrative. Mills admitted that doing so was “complex and difficult”, but here at Nightcity.gg we have faith that they’ll pull it off.

Those of you who never fast traveled in Skyrim should be pleased to learn that the player can ignore the main quest indefinitely, and will be able to level their character simply by exploring Night City, participating in side quests and other activities.

Cyberpunk 2077 — Gangs Of Night City 3 14 Screenshot
There’s probably at least 2 side-quests just in this screenshot

Cyberpunk 2077 DLC Confirmed

The Witcher 3‘s Blood and Wine DLC has been lauded as one of the greatest DLCs ever made, and Mills told the Collider staff that we can expect something similar for Cyberpunk 2077. With the game’s release pushed back once more, any DLC feels a long way away, but it is still exciting news. Considering the sheer size of Night City, it is easy to imagine that there’s lots of Night City that will potentially be left unexplored by the main game. There’s also the possibility that CP2077‘s DLC doesn’t take place in Night City at all.

Cyberpunk 2077 interview inspiration night city

For better or for worse, CD Projekt Red continues to be transparent and open with their work on Cyberpunk 2077, and the interview with Senior Quest Designer Patrick Mills was no expectation. Learning where designers get their ideas is always interesting, and it’s also a great way to find something new to read or watch. While you wait for December 10th, you could kill some time by checking out some of the books and movies that inspired the CDPR developers!

How are you going to handle the wait until December 10th? Let us know in the comments!

About the Author
Daniel Downey
An avid reader of sci-fi, fantasy, and history. Believes disagreement should mean discourse, not flame wars. Still searching for that next game that grabs him the way (those mimics in) Dark Souls did.
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