"Cyberpunk has an insane amount of nonlinearity, but expectations were higher."
There have been many complaints about Cyberpunk 2077 since the day it was released, and while the developers are working hard to attend to them, one thing that fans are still criticizing is the fact that the game is too linear. However, Lead Quest Designer Paweł Sasko doesn't agree, he thinks there is more nonlinearity than meets the eye.
During a recent stream, he said that players think Cyberpunk 2077 doesn't offer many "life-changing" choices just because they expected more because of how The Witcher 3 was built.
"And I think that Cyberpunk has an insane amount of nonlinearity, but, again, I think that expectations were higher."
At this point, if you haven't finished the game, it's probably best to stop reading to avoid potential spoilers.
Sasko also connects the reception to expectations from "big branches":
"For instance, the fact that Takemura can die or not is such a big, gigantic branch that actually influences so many things along the way. And it was so much work to make it work both those ways."
When players learned how to save Takemura, everyone started doing it, so it stopped being a choice in people's minds, in Sasko's opinion. So fans wanted variety in big branches, and smaller ones were just not enough.
"I think Cyberpunk has fucking crazy amount of nonlinearity and openness to it. We as devs interpret non-linearity in a much broader fashion than players do. Players just go down to, ‘Can I make different choices to see completely different content?"
Overall, Sasko thinks what the team did with the story is "fine" but could have been better. Players shouldn't use a strict definition of what is linear and what is not, otherwise, only the biggest branches would matter.
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