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The Sequel to Cyberpunk 2077 Could Be Caught Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Cyberpunk 2077's positive reception and redemption arc set a high standard that the sequel, which is now under development, will have to meet.

Cyberpunk 2077 has done more to overcome its critical backlash than other games. With Cyberpunk 2077’s original goal finally realised with the release of the Phantom Liberty DLC expansion in 2023 and the highly ambitious 2.1 upgrade in 2023, CD Projekt Red has spared no effort since the game’s bumpy launch. The game now has an admirable average of around 60,000 continuous Steam players and is consistently included at or near the top of bestseller lists on digital marketplaces. Thanks to its efforts to get Cyberpunk 2077 into its intended shipping state, CD Projekt Red has won back fans’ goodwill, but it has also raised the bar for the sequel, which is currently in development.

Codenamed “Project Orion” since its announcement in October 2022, the sequel to Cyberpunk 2077 is one of the games currently under development at CD Projekt Red. Director Gabe Amatangelo, who was responsible for Phantom Liberty, will be directing the actual sequel to Cyberpunk 2077; aside from that, not much is known about the project at the moment. Project Orion has a lot of narrative and gameplay expectations to meet after the phenomenal reception of Phantom Liberty and the 2.1 release.

Between the main game and Phantom Liberty, CD Project Red has covered almost every typical cyberpunk ground for future games. You may find all the main ideas of cyberpunk science fiction in the top quests from Cyberpunk 2077. Cyberpunk 2077’s versatile life-path system allows for in-depth exploration of a wide range of topics, including the nature of man-machine relationships, the consequences of blurring boundaries, the interplay of power between governments and corporations, and the blending of different social classes and cultural backgrounds.

Not that Project Orion’s creators and director won’t find methods to shock audiences; it’s just that they might have to go to uncharted terrain to pull it off. The next Cyberpunk game could dig further into the psychological and physiological problems that emerge when the machine parts fused with organic tissue start to betray the bodies they’re supposed to improve, which is an area that’s ripe for additional exploration: body horror.

While themes of body horror are hinted at in Cyberpunk 2077 and Phantom Liberty, they could be central to the plot of the whole sequel.In terms of gameplay, there are certainly several avenues that Project Orion might take to make it better than its predecessor. One of the most prominent is a revamped and enlarged version of the role-playing game’s advancement systems. CD Project Red has spared no effort in revamping Cyberpunk 2077’s clumsy RPG progression. The newest iteration of these systems is far more user-friendly and incorporates Cyberpunk-inspired bonuses and stats that have a noticeable effect on characters’ fighting abilities.

With the 2.1 Cyberpunk 2077 Update, which drastically changes the main experience, and the additions to the base game that have come with constant patches, Cyberpunk 2077 is now closer than ever before to fulfilling the promise of its first presentation. The initial hysteria around Cyberpunk 2077 had a mixed effect on the game as it went through its redemption arc, contributing both good and bad reviews. Project Orion faces a formidable challenge in avoiding the same early mistakes and successfully completing the landing phase, similar to CD Project Red.

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