Roaming The Streets And Wide Open Spaces Of Cyberpunk 2077

March marks a whole year since this pandemic started. At this point almost everyone is feeling fatigued and frustrated with being stuck at home in an effort to curb the virus. Even self-proclaimed introverts and homebodies are longing for those days when we can gather with our friends and family, or simply enjoy a meal at a restaurant without fretting about following COVID-19 guidelines.

What I miss the most is traveling. Though the vaccines are slowly rolling out in countries all over the world, we’re currently no where near done with this pandemic just yet. What can a person who has serious wanderlust do? Fortunately, there’s video games and Cyberpunk 2077 has been one of the ones that has made me appreciate the art of savoring the places you’re in.

Ignoring all the never-ending woes CD Projekt Red and the game are tangled up in, I doggedly continue my journey through Night City. I’m about 50 hours into the game and playing a lot of the side quests that are available. Between the NCPD side quests and the gigs given by fixers, not including the side missions tied to the main story, there’s a lot of ground to cover. I’ve done so many NCPD side quests and gigs that I’ve already maxed out my Street Cred level, but continue to level up my V.

In my pursuit for easy eddies and to make my V the baddest bitch to ever walk Night City, I find myself traveling from one job to the next by hopping on my bike and speeding down the highways.

There are plenty of fast travel terminals you can walk up to as V to transport you at or near the area you want to go to start your next mission or quest. In other games I’ve played I’m practically combing the maps for a fast travel point to get me to my destination as quickly as possible. What I discovered while playing Cyberpunk 2077 is I actually want to take the scenic route to my next location.

V going wherever the job takes her.

As horrible as I’ll always be at driving to places in video games, the motorcycles in Cyberpunk 2077 has made it super easy to control the vehicle and get around Night City and beyond without wanting to use the fast travel terminals. Whether I’m cruising through the swanky Westbrook district of Night City or speeding down the dusty, desert landscapes of the Badlands, each area of Cyberpunk 2077 is more distinct than the last place you rode through.

Taking the longer way to get to my next mission has allowed me to appreciate every detail that went into building the world of Cyberpunk 2077, from the flashing neon signs to the graffiti walls tucked inside the back alleys of the city. I would have missed all of this if I opted to fast travel my way through Night City.

I know taking the scenic route means it’ll be several months, maybe a year, before I’ll be done with this game. The longer it takes me to get V to her next destination, the longer it’ll take me to complete the missions that matter to me. And yet, it doesn’t bother me at all. Being largely travel deprived at the moment has quenched my thirst for exploring new and unfamiliar places.

When I was able to hop on a plane to go to London or Seattle I always took in every sight, sound, smell, and taste of the city or country I was in. I wanted to soak everything in because I was never sure if I would get the chance to revisit these places again. My mom taught me to slow down and really enjoy where you were because each moment could be your only chance.

It’s kind of like how I’ve been approaching my playthrough of Cyberpunk 2077. Not that I can’t revisit Night City whenever I want. It’s not like I need to get on a plane to get there. It’s more like I want to enjoy the world in the same way I would appreciate my visit to Tokyo or Honolulu. Every city and country in the world will have differences and similarities, and nothing beats the thrill you get when you step onto a place for the very first time.

The joy of travel is discovery, and Cyberpunk 2077 has reminded me to cherish that feeling. I can’t wait until I’m able to explore a real place and not a fictional one again. Until then, I’ll hop on my bike as V and ride like the wind.

Are you a gamer who happens to love to travel? Which open world games have helped you cope during the pandemic until it’s safe and possible to travel once more?


5 thoughts on “Roaming The Streets And Wide Open Spaces Of Cyberpunk 2077

  1. I know its a little close to home, in fact, it really is just the city I live in but Watch Dogs Legion has solved a lot of anxiety when I’ve been stuck at home missing walking the streets of Westminster taking snaps.

    1. I heard Watch Dogs Legion did a fantastic job of replicating London in the game. I have it in my pile as to be played, but I’m sure I’m going to feel that same nostalgia for the city when I get around to playing it. Makes you glad to have games sometimes stand-in for the places you visited or simulate the feeling of touring a place you’ve never been to before, fictional or real.

  2. I’m also looking forward to traveling again once all this is over! Until then, I have to admit that of all games, I’ve found Fallout 76 to be the most “vacation-like.” The game’s a mess, and it’s setting (West Virginia) isn’t exotic, but boy, Bethesda really did well with it’s environments. Much to their credit, the game’s map is expansive, and it contains several different regions – traveling to each one feels like a new experience, and there are so many secrets to find and uncover. Like in any Fallout game, travel is all done on foot, and I’ve spent so many sessions just exploring and wandering without any direction. At times, it’s honestly been so relaxing that I’m able to drift off and dream about taking a real walk in the woods…until a horde of enemies shows up to ruin my day, ha!

    1. I agree! Having games that simply allows you to explore, and maybe sometimes take a detour from actually getting to the story or missions, is really relaxing. Obviously this hinges greatly on how well the world was designed, but if a studio achieves that, despite how buggy the game is, there’s nothing that’s going to stop me from spending a lot of time in it. Breath of the Wild is another “vacation-like” game which I need to return to at some point. I do love collecting horses and cooking in that game. 🙂

  3. I am also someone who love to travel but during this pandemic, gaming has become my main hobby which has really helped me to spend some quality time while having to stay at home for most of the time. I have also played cyberpunk 2077 and there is surely a lot of explore in amazing world of Night City. You seem to be taking the right approach by getting a good experience of all the places of Night City which really helps to know get the fair idea of what a particular has to offer in this amazing game.

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