Cyberpunk 2077 Maelstrom Scene Side-by-Side Shows Massive Visual Improvements

A user on Reddit put together a video comparing Cyberpunk’s TGS gameplay with the same scene from 2018, and the improvements are impressive

Cyberpunk 2077 has had some major graphical work done, according to a side-by-side comparison of two of the game’s demo scenes.

We first got a look at protagonist V’s interaction with the Maelstrom gang, one of the many groups of criminals roaming Night City, back in 2018, and it was impressive. Fast forward two years to 2020 though, and that gameplay demo admittedly looks a bit aged, especially when it’s played right next to footage of the same scene from this year’s Tokyo Game Show.

Side by side comparison to the New Japanese footage and the 2018 demo from r/cyberpunkgame

Put together by Reddit user u/rustyspear11, there’s clearly a lot that’s changed about this scene, visually and gameplay-wise. From the first frames, we can already see some key differences in the game’s UI, notably the additions of a mini-map in the top right corner and some quick-select items in the bottom left.

The entire scene also plays out in a much less cinematic fashion. With this scene being one of the first instances of gameplay we saw of Cyberpunk 2077, it was fair to assume that much of it was scripted. This time around, camera movements aren’t as fluid and don’t slowly pan around the entire area. Instead, the movements are more realistic, more like what someone casually playing the game would do.

But even without looking into every nook and cranny of the room, there are several notable visual improvements. Starting off, there are some serious improvements to the game’s lighting. Light sources reflect their respective colors, and those colors bounce off of objects, further spreading that color in a much more realistic fashion. You can mostly see this on the couches V and Jackie sit on, as they reflect a much more intense red light off of the small seating area.

The models of the Maelstrom gang members have also changed, becoming more detailed to fit with their augment-heavy lifestyles. Dum Dum, the gang member that takes V through their purchase of a highly-advanced drone, seems to have had a lot of work done. He and the other Maelstrom gang members are more augmented than before, and the glowing red lights in their heads have been turned down from their original “tail lights at midnight on a country road” setting to something more like a stoplight.

With all that out of the way, there is still the glaring issue of clipping, or one model passing through another. This issue is at its clearest when V taps Jackie on the shoulder, telling him to sit down. I would give developer CD Projekt Red a pass on this one though – games of this size with so many different models are bound to have some clipping issues.

Cyberpunk 2077 is set to release November 19 for PS4, Xbox One and PC, with next-gen and Stadia releases yet to be announced.

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