CD Projekt Red promised to take RPGs to a new level with Cyberpunk 2077 when they released their first trailer years ago. Since then, players have eagerly awaited what the world of Night City had in store for them.
Leading up to launch, CDPR gave plenty of snippets of what the game has to offer; Each quest and sub-quests would take the player down a different path, with many iterations of play-throughs available. Even though there is a primary storyline, the overall game depends heavily on player choice. You can build your V however you want, with the option of tweaking skills and attributes that they want. Every NPC interaction leads down a different path depending on your choices.
Even gamers who tend to play through a game only once can play Cyberpunk 2077 multiple times to have a unique experience every time. Senior designer Miles Tost during a podcast stated that the Lifepath chosen at the start would influence the game as a whole, just the Prologue. But has that been the case?
Here is all you need to know about choosing a Lifepath and how important we think it may be.
What are Lifepaths in Cyberpunk 2077?
At the beginning of the game, you choose your Lifepath, essentially V’s backstory for Cyberpunk 2077. Once you choose the Lifepath, you will get to play the Prologue with a storyline unique to the character you have chosen that gives you a brief handle on the game’s dialogue and UI. They also present players with unique dialogue options are certain junctures of the game.
What are the different Lifepath options?
When selecting the Lifepath of your character you will be given three different choices.
The Nomad backstory starts the character off outside Night City in the Badlands. In the Prologue of the game, it is revealed that Nomad V was a part of the Bakker clan of Nomads before they had a falling out. This makes V a newbie coming to Night City for the first time. For players who like to work alone, the Nomad is the outcast they want to step into the shoes of.
The Street Kid
Street Kid V grew up in Night City and knows how to get around pretty well. The Prologue for this version of V begins with them being tasked with stealing a car should they choose to save their friend from a loan shark. Players who want to jump right into the jarring world of Night City should pick Street Kid.
This V is a cog in the corporate machinery. Players can start from the top by being a part of Arasaka corporate world, a corporation integral to the overarching narrative. This gives players some insight into Night City’s brutal corporate culture. As Corpo V, players know all-too-well the ways of the corpo, but lack the street smarts of the Street Kid.
What does your chosen Lifepath influence in Cyberpunk 2077?
Now that you know what the Lifepath choices are at the start of the game you can make your choice. Your choice of Lifepath will firstly influence the Prologue of the game. In the Prologue, different Lifepaths have different objectives. Nomad V has to find their way into Night City from the Badlands while getting to learn the ropes of the game. Street Kid V is tasked with saving their friend by stealing a vehicle. While Corp V is faced with the immense pressure of coping with the cold corporate life before being unceremoniously kicked out of it.
Once the Prologue is over, players continue Act 1 and Act 2 of the game. The two acts are mostly the same irrespective of the background of your character. Players can get a few unique side quests.
When interacting with different NPCs the player may get different dialogues and choices based on their background. So, some may say that the Lifepath chosen is quite important.
However, players noted that irrespective of the Lifepaths, all characters ended up on a level playing field after the Prologue. Jackie gives the same introduction to the city to all characters even if you are supposed to be a Street Kid who had grown up there. Players pointed out that neither of the Lifepaths really enhanced or boosted any skills. Aside from some unique dialogue options, Lifepath has no direct impact on your ending — with choices made throughout the game having all the bearing on what ends up of V.
Players cannot choose to change their Lifepath once they make the choice at the beginning of the game as well. So, players have to complete or restart the game to get a glimpse of the other Lifepaths.
There has been a mixed response from players of the game regarding the Lifepath angle.
According to one player, changing their Lifepath completely changed their gaming experience.
Played #Cyberpunk2077 for 8 hours last night, but wasn’t feeling my character. It took me that long to work out my play style and how the traits and perks affect it. Started a new game today with a different LifePath and speccing. Almost immediately, everything felt 300% better.
— Dead Player (@DrewMTaylor) December 11, 2020
Many players are still discussing which Lifepath they have chosen and why.
WHAT LIFEPATH DID YOU CHOOSE, V? #Cyberpunk2077
— Chaos EC🎄@ NIGHT CITY (@ChaosEC) December 10, 2020
Then there are the disillusioned players who have realized that all Lifepaths essentially lead to the same banquet of different endings.
— Claudia (@IonMagus) December 10, 2020
Some players were utterly disappointed that irrespective of the three apparent choices the game took players down pretty much the same path:
How important is your Lifepath in Cyberpunk 2077?
So, is your Lifepath choice important when playing Cyberpunk 2077?
Our conclusion is that Lifepath is not that important. We appreciate the work on them but there is nothing to fret a lot about choosing one. You will still play the same story with nearly the same options. After all, it’s still one character, not three.
Players are given a bit of a choice here which is good, but this basically ends with an uneventful introduction to the backstory of the character. Irrespective of the dialogue options and side quests the road taken by all three Lifepaths is too similar for it to have any big impact.
The choices you make in the game are pretty similar for all the backstories. There is no unique storyline for the character in the rest of the game for you to put enough stress on your Lifepath.
At the same time, we are not invalidating those who feel that their Lifepath has impacted their game. How the game starts does set a tone for the rest of the gameplay. There are certain character traits that one may relate to. So, even though all Lifepaths essentially will lead you to a similar experience, you should go with the backstory that speaks to you the most.
What do you think about the Lifepaths offered by Cyberpunk? Do you think CB Projekt Red could improve the Lifepath choices? Which Lifepath did you choose? Let us know your thoughts.