‘Cyberpunk Edgerunners’ review. The trigger and CD PROJEKT RED collide and spark. A work that caused a unique chemical change

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Cyberpunk 2077 was the highest quality storytelling open-world RPG. By thoroughly incorporating non-linear gameplay into the established beginnings, turns, and conclusions, we realized role-playing as if we were living life.

The derivative works of such masterpieces will be distributed as animations. I wonder if a one-way anime based on a game that sells non-linear is exciting. Does it make you feel like watching someone else play the game? To be honest, I was skeptical. However, I would like to report that my worries were unfounded. “Cyberpunk Edgerunners” was a derivative work of “Cyberpunk 2077” that boasted excellent quality. It is not a replay of someone else but an animation that brings an unforgettable impression as a part of the history of Night City.

“Cyberpunk Edgerunners” is an animation work of all ten episodes distributed on Netflix from September 13, 2022. It is co-produced by CD PROJEKT RED and animation studio Trigger Co., Ltd. The director is Hiroyuki Imaishi, known for ‘Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann,’ ‘Kill la Kill,’ and ‘Promare.’

The feature is that it is based on “Cyberpunk 2077”. The main character, David Martinez, who suddenly lost all of himself, draws a story about becoming a cyberpunk edge runner when he obtains cyberwar that realizes fantastic acceleration of the human body. By the way, the time series of the work corresponds to the past time from the game.

This article was written after listening to all ten episodes provided by Netflix.

Trigger and CD PROJEKT RED hit and spark.

In a nutshell, “Cyberpunk Edgerunners” is an animation work that boasts a high degree of perfection as fiction based on “Cyberpunk 2077”. While reproducing the atmosphere of the game like a cocktail of blood, semen, vomit, and love juice, unlike the game, it is not non-linear, and the expression of animation is realized in a highly original form.

The overall style is quite similar to that of Japan’s late-night anime, perhaps due to the influence of Trigger. A splattering gore depiction that explodes to the fullest, next to sexual activity, starting with boy meets girl, the background that the main character is a student, a teacher and a pleasant teammate, the growth and love of young people, etc. It is familiar in domestic animation works. The royal road juvenile fiction that combines the elements is developed at a good tempo (this work is R-18).

The main character, David Martinez, is a bad student who doesn’t have a specific dream, is active and intelligent, but doesn’t fit in with his surroundings at school. However, he is a kind person who genuinely cares about others. Although the plot of “ordinary people rising in the underworld” is standard, by thoroughly contrasting the social norms in “Cyberpunk 2077” with the hero’s character image until the end, “Young people without dreams, It raises the themes of how to live in a city where people die for their goals, and what it means to think of others in a world where prioritizing oneself over others is common sense.

This has something in common with “Cyberpunk 2077”, which depicts the life of “V.” Due to these factors, this work is established as a splendid derivative work, not a typical work that borrows the setting from the game. Perhaps because of the features described later, in a good way, it is not the “usual trigger work.”

“DEAD LEAVES” is a directorial work by Mr. Hiroyuki Imaishi, whose primary focus is gore depiction and dirty jokes. Influenced by the existence and the intense drama between humans, the emphasis is placed on realistic expressions as much as possible. In addition, by positioning the time series of the work in the past of the game version, it feels uncomfortable even if this work is set as a derivative work of “Cyberpunk 2077”, which is characterized by non-linear role-playing, as “an event that has already ended.” Nevertheless, it’s unique that it doesn’t look like it.

A significant feature of this work is the clash between the Trigger production team and CD PROJEKT RED throughout the production. Collision, not fusion. Hiroyuki Imaishi, well-known for his dynamism, Trigger, and CD PROJEKT RED, who has a reputation for his slow and bitter narrative, alternately repeats their fierce claims on the screen. Trigger roared wildly, saying, “This is our promise,” and just when he was tired and fell asleep, CD PROJEKT RED stood up and quietly whispered his thoughts. Mt.Fuji is showing an explosive eruption. Kilauea pours out boiling magma. Because they both have the same amount of heat, they are strangely well-balanced. And occasionally, the two collide and spark. There is a moment when Trigger and CD PROJEKT RED cause a chemical reaction, creating a unique expression that simultaneously incorporates the strengths of each. This phenomenon, which can be seen around the turning points in the story, is guaranteed to burn the viewer’s brain directly.

This is an animation work based on a game, so I would like to focus on creating the images. “Cyberpunk 2077”, set in Night City, a nightless steel castle, emphasized visual expression with an emphasis on natural beauty.

The world depicted with an overwhelming amount of material and tremendous detail has reached the point where you can create a scene like a road movie just by randomly driving your favorite car. But, of course, “Cyberpunk Edgerunners” is an animation work, so the realistic expression full of texture that emphasizes a lot of line drawing like a game is limited.

A big part of that is the colorful background beauty. However, when it appears at the right moment, it leaves a strong impression on the viewer, combined with the potent composition and unique color effects that make extensive use of green, blue, orange, yellow, pink, and purple in the genealogy of “Blade Runner.” leave. Among them, the most fantastic thing is the cyberware transformation gimmick that Trigger is good at. The mechanism that moves smoothly and dynamically has a coolness that makes you feel like you’re watching a robot battle anime, and it’s just breathtaking.

On the other hand, there is no time to enumerate the appeal of animation-like animation. The picture moves in such a way that what is happening with this character’s body? Sometimes comical, sometimes like a live-action movie. Some expressions sway the entire screen, and some “hold down” by minimizing the moving parts. Yet, the speed of movement is also exquisite. It’s like the Trigger is right here.

The performances of the actors who go with it are also excellent. In particular, Mr. KENN, who plays the main character, has a beautiful voice that changes with time. Aoi Yuki, who played the role of the heroine Lucy, also has a mysterious atmosphere with fragility and desperation to live.

The BGM with lyrics in the play not only serves to liven up the climax but also has the effect of creating a sense of everyday life, assuming the existence of the radio in the game.

Speaking of image creation, there are many homages to science fiction works such as “Cyberpunk 2077”. From the time the PV was announced before the broadcast, there was an homage to “A Clockwork Orange.” Still, for example, the main character David, who has a built-in accelerator, has a backbone similar to Shimamura Joe from “Cyborg 009”. It also pays homage to the performance of acceleration. Some cuts image one scene of the game. The production team’s love for science fiction and games is directly conveyed, and it’s fun to try out various things on your own.

So far, we have discussed the evaluation points, but this is not to say that there are no concerns. That is, the goodness of this work is that it is an animation work that boasts a high degree of perfection as a derivative work of “Cyberpunk 2077”. Although the composition of the work itself is content that can be established even if you have not played the game, it is undeniable that prior knowledge is necessary to enjoy the job thoroughly. Suppose you haven’t played “Cyberpunk 2077”.

In that case, you can understand the premise and enjoy the story, such as “Why is this world’s ethics collapsed, conflicts between companies are taking place, and why is it full of sexual entertainment?” However, it seems complicated to feel a sense of convincing about the contrasting structure of the critical hero and other characters’ action philosophies.

This is to prevent the discomfort caused by explaining the local common sense to the locals again, but it is a trade-off in securing a wide range of viewers. However, I am very much in favor of making this work an introductory material for playing games. Scenes from the anime are waiting for you in the game.

Overall, CYBERPUNK EDGERUNNERS is a work of outstanding quality that was born when Trigger and CD PROJEKT RED, two creative groups with overly strong personalities, collided with each other with all their might. Although it is the royal road of domestic animation, it has a fragrant aroma full of exoticism.

The destructive power of the dynamic triggers and the deep taste of CD PROJEKT RED clash creates a chemical reaction that creates a one-of-a-kind charm that evokes nostalgia for Night City in the viewer and a lasting impression. It will be engraved in your heart. This is a book I would recommend to those who used to be cyberpunk, those who admire cyberpunk, and active edge runners.

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