Cyberpunk: Edgerunners Review: An Amazing Videogame Anime Adaptation.

Like many people, I was highly anticipating Cyberpunk 2077 before it was released.
I think it is fair to say that it was one of the most anticipated video games of all time, what with how hyped up the marketing was.
This made it all the more crushing when the game released practically broken at launch, especially on consoles.
I reviewed Cyberpunk 2077 shortly after release and I gave it a positive review, despite admitting that it caused my PlayStation to crash five times on my first play through.
Looking back, I think I was too lenient.
However, at the same time, I can also see why I gave the game a positive review because of how much the story, characters and world building gripped me.
Such features made me excited when it was announced that Studio Trigger would be releasing their own anime set in the Cyberpunk 2077 universe, Cyberpunk: Edgerunners. 

Despite the game’s many many faults, the anime had the chance to be something special.

You may have heard the buzz surrounding this anime as one of the best of the year and, after watching all ten episodes, I can add my voice to this buzz.
Directed by Hiroyuki Imaishi, Cyberpunk: Edgerunners is set in Night City, a corporation-run hell hole, where the only way to make a name for yourself is to cybernetically enhance your body, often to the point of cyberpsychosis.
It is this bleak city where we meet our main character David Martinez (Kenn) who, after a tragic turn of events, decides to have a military grade piece of technology, known as the Sandevistan, implanted into his body.
This leads to David meeting a netrunner named Lucy (Aoi Yuki), introducing him to the world of Edgerunners, which he excels in, due to his new implant.
The growing bond between David and Lucy is great to see play out as they have such excellent chemistry. 

David and Lucy work well togethor right from the start.

It is not only them, though, because the other wacky characters among the Edgerunners are also very compelling.
There is the tough as nails leader Maine (Hiroki Toshi), his also tough as nails girlfriend Dorio (Michiki Kaiden), experienced netrunner Kiwi (Takako Honda), getaway driver Falco (Yasuyuki Kase), and, of course, Rebecca (Tomoyo Kurosawa).
I saved Rebecca for last because she was definitely my favourite character in the show.
She is crazy and wild but also extremely loyal to those she cares for, creating a complex character who was entertaining to watch.

Every scene with Rebecca is a blast.

With so many great characters, it is made all the more tragic when some of them bite the dust.
This is Night City, after all, where happy endings are rare and bloody endings are all too common.
Speaking of blood, wow, was this show gory.
Studio Trigger really committed to the violence of the game. 

People explode into bloody messes a lot in this anime.

Along with this, the animation for the action scenes and the soundtrack in these moments are stellar.
Such features all come together to create a spectacular anime that has convinced many people to replay Cyberpunk 2077, or play it for the first time.
For these new players, they will see a few familiar faces from Edgerunners, as some characters from the game are incorporated here, mostly as cameos.
However, there is one character from the game who has a big role.
I will not spoil who it is but, in my opinion, this character was portrayed much better in Edgerunners than in Cyberpunk 2077.          
I would be open to see more characters from the game pop up in the Cyberpunk Universe, if Studio Trigger wants to continue this series, maybe as an anthology where we focus on different Night City characters each season. 

We can see how new characters from Night City are “remembered” if this show continues.

This is how much I enjoyed this anime.
I liked it so much that I am now wishing for a second season that we probably will not get.
If Cyberpunk: Edgerunners is a one time thing, however, then it is certainly worth it.
Studio Trigger delivered a fantastic anime here.
Along with other amazing video game adaptations, like Arcane, Cyberpunk: Edgerunners makes it seem like animated series are the way to go for such adaptations. 

Cyberpunk 2077 Review: A Fun, Buggy, Hot Mess.

3 and a half stars
I remember the first time I saw the 48 minute gameplay reveal for Cyberpunk 2077.
It blew my socks off with its quality and I became incredibly excited for its release.
Years passed and each tease got me more and more excited, especially the reveal that Keanu Reeves would play a big part in the game’s story, playing Johnny Silverhand.
My hype for the game was to the point that I was almost as excited for it as I was for The Last of Us Part 2.
However, going in, I knew I had to temper my expectations because it had been hyped up to levels I was sure even it could not surpass.
Yet, I was still confident that CD PROJEKT RED would deliver a complete and finished product.
Then, news came out that they were restricting those who reviewed the PC version, so they could only use footage from the trailers.
Even more suspicious was them completely banning any reviews for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox versions.
At the time, I reasoned that they were just trying to hide the bugs that would be fixed with the day one patch and the game would run fine on my PlayStation 4.
Oh, how wrong I was.
I’m not saying anything new by going over how incredibly buggy the console versions were upon release and, honestly, still are.
I just completed my first playthrough of the game and lost count of how many bugs I encountered.
My game crashed a total of five times, seven if you count the two times I had to quit because a bug made it literally unplayable.
There were a litany of other glitches I experienced, like characters speeding up like they were the flash, the frame rate dropping when driving, characters calling me in the middle of a mission when I’m already talking to another character.

There are numerous bugs in the world of Cyberpunk 2077. Too many to count, in fact.

Not only this but Cyberpunk 2077 is also lacking features that have been in open world games for almost two decades.
The most prominent example of this is the police system, which is 100% broken, as police officers spawn right in front of you and give up chasing you after you get a block away from them.
Driving is also a pain because of how difficult cars are to drive, the already stated low frame rate, and the mini map being way too small.
At least I found driving around on motorcycles to be pretty fun.
However, despite all of these numerous problems, I still found myself having fun with Cyberpunk 2077.
Yes, it definitely should not have been released in this state, but I still found myself enjoying the story, its characters, and gameplay.
You play as V (Gavin Drea for male, and Cherami Leigh for female), a mercenary living in the dystopian Night City, who is hired to steal a biochip from a corpo.
Of course, this heist goes completely wrong and V has to place the biochip in their head to save it.
Unfortunately, after a near death experience, the biochip begins to kill V and replace them with the digitized soul of Johnny Silverhand. 

Keanu Reeves does a great job as Silverhand, although I do find it a bit hard to imagine him as a rockstar with his voice.

And so, V and Johnny have to work together to find a way to remove the biochip, without killing V, encountering a large cast of colorful characters along the way.
Takemura (Rome Kanda), Judy (Karla Tassara), Panam (Emily Woo Zeller), River (Robbie Daymond), Kerry (Mathew Yang King), Jackie (Jason Hightower), I came to care about so many of these great characters, to the point that, when one of them died in a mission, I actually looked up how to save them, then went back and did just that because I liked them so much.
The growing bond between V and Johnny is also great to see, as it grows across the game and Johnny continuously gives you advice on what to do in many compelling missions.
Of these numerous fun quests, I would have to say that my favorite is actually a side quest called Sinnerman.
The opening to that mission is just so intriguing and, as it goes on, it raises some really interesting moral questions about belief, forgiveness and corporate exploitation.
Along with the great quests, there are also some intense gameplay mechanics, with different play styles offered to the different builds you use.
I focused on my stealth and turned my V into a Cyberpunk ninja, occasionally using Mantis Blades to slice up my enemies.
This action went along great with the score, which is absolutely phenomenal in every way.
I can easily see myself listening to this game’s music for years to come.
These great elements of story, character and gameplay combine into the endings, of which there are numerous.
Unfortunately, these endings are mostly based on what you choose right at the end rather than across the game, but they all offer different perspectives for the story, and different conclusions for each of the characters, delivering a satisfying experience.

How the game ends, and who stays in control of V’s body by the end, is entirely up to the player’s actions.

It’s just a shame that this satisfaction is watered down by the extremely buggy nature of the game, and the shady business practices that went towards hiding this from players.
I may have not enjoyed The Last of Us Part 2’s story to the point that it made me personally find playing it to be a negative experience, but at least Naughty Dog didn’t screw with players by releasing a buggy mess.
Once again, I know I’m not the only person pointing out the hypocrisy of a game preaching against corporations when said game falls victim to corporate greed, but it’s still quite depressing.
Cyberpunk 2077 could have been one of the best games of 2020 that delivered a worthwhile experience, even if it could never live up to all the hype.
Instead, it will most likely be remembered for its buggy launch and practicing the very corporate actions it speaks against.
Still a fun game overall but one with a corporate shadow leaning over it.