Counter Monkey – Counter Monkey Punk

The Spoony One | Jan 18 2013 | more notation(s) | 

We take a look at one of my favorite RPGs and its exciting new revival as a game by CD Projekt Red! Cyberpunk 2077!

The teaser announces a new video game (developed by Polish video game company CD Projekt RED) based on Cyberpunk 2020 – an RPG system created by Mike Pondsmith back in the 90’s.

More info at

(Posted under Creative Commons License, Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported)

  • Joe Hall

    Finally! Love the Counter Monkey series Spoony. Keep it up!

  • Okanehira

    Last Starfighter poster! Fuck yeah!

    I was hoping you would talk about this, really curious about the upcoming games origins. Thanks.

  • Silly_Hats

    Ugh, I am pumped for CP2077. I adored Witcher 2, this can only be great.

  • Joshua William Hastings

    I’m excited for Cyberpunk 2077. I suppose Deus Ex: Human Revolution left me wanting more. I’ve been meaning to get back into a Shadowrun Game, since I have the 4th edition manual.

  • Michael Sporzynski

    I was never all that much into CP2020 (although I do like cyberpunk as a genre), but this game? Oh man, this is gonna be great. CD Projekt did an amazing job with both Witcher games – I’m a fan of the original Witcher novels and short stories, and they captured the feel of those perfectly – so I’m certain they won’t screw up with CP2077.

    Plus, I vaguely recall the creator of CP2020 saying he’s satisfied with what they did so far with his creation.

    Unrelatedly: Spoony, you mention the old editions of Deadlands. You could do a Counter Monkey episode about that game (particularly DL:Classic as game mechanics go, but that’s my personal bias). It’s a unique world and I’m pretty sure the game is not THAT popular, so I guess a lot of your fans would learn something new. Speaking of which: have you seen/heard of Deadlands Noir, which is a new era the system has been “translated” to?

    • Stephen Schulze

      Pondsmith isn’t just satisfied, he’s heavily involved with the game’s development.

      This video of him discussing the new game is well worth a look:

      • Michael Sporzynski

        Ah, I stand corrected. Thanks!

  • Jon Buss

    I love this series! Keep it up. Definetly going to look into Shadowrun and Cyberpunk after this. If I could make a suggestion for a future episode; could you compare and contrast the various editions of DnD? Looking at what changed over the years, why everyone hates 4.0, and what they are trying to do with DnD Next. As a role player who is still pretty new, and started with 3.5, I think it would be cool to hear about the roots of DnD and role playing as a whole from someone who has more experience with it. Its one thing to do internet research and a whole different thing to hear storys and opinions from someone who has actually played with each system.

  • Eathanskies

    Cyberpunk gives me the biggest nerd boner. Mix it with Counter Monkey, I think my dick will explode.

  • Dja_Akh

    I like both settings (Shadowrun and Cyberpunk). Shadowrun for the science fantasy (especially in 4th edition) and Cyberpunk for the… well Cyberpunk. Thought, Shadowrun was never half as strong as a Cyberpunk-Rpg.
    As Spooney pointed out, SR4 is… kind of balanced. Sometimes. At least they try to polish their rules once in a while. And technology there is updated to fit present time imagination of the future.

    Does anyone know, if there might be some fan ‘house rules’ or convertions or ANYTHING which tries to fix at least the rule issues of Cyberpunk?

  • Wes Shanks

    One of the things our DM (who was called a referee, I think, although I could be wrong, it has been a couple years since I played CP2020) did for those who put 9’s and 10’s in their skills was use the reputation part of the game. Where at a certain point your skills were known locally, regionally, nationally, etc, depending on how much you put in. Therefore, if you made yourself into one of the best solos out there (10 in combat sense) or put a 10 in Muay Thai Kickboxing, then people would come looking for you to beat you and gain your rep as being one of the best for themselves. Therefore, it GREATLY decreased your survivability ratio to start out as one of the best, with no in-game resources accumulated from runs. Three other things I was surprised you didn’t talk about.

    First, netrunning. That is one of the most convoluted, crazy systems ever made. It was extraordinarily complex (albeit highly useful,) and it was a game-stopper, where the ref had to focus exclusively on that part of the game, while everyone else went to grab food, drinks, a smoke, etc.

    Second, the timeline put into the back of the book. It was always interesting for me to see that the timeline followed decently well with current real-world stuff up until somewhere near 2000, I think. Maybe 1998, but think it mentions possible voter fraud in a election in there somewhere.

    Third, the fact that you could die during character creation. There is enough stuff on the lifepath that, rolling badly, could cause you to die before you start. Mental/Physical illness, Psychosis, etc.

    Honorable mention for a book you didn’t mention has to go out to Blackhands Street Weapons 2020. Was a compilation of every single weapon ever printed in any of the books, along with a couple new ones. Chrome 4, the book you didn’t find, had the easily broken armored clothing in it, as well as a lot of Bioware, and a bunch of the drugs (I think, that may have been chrome 3.) Also mention to the “selling out” part, where you sold yourself to a company and they put bombs in your skull, held family hostage without them knowing it, etc, and the fact that it mentions somewhere that “if your players are acting up and causing you stress, feel free to kill them.” :)

    • Mateusz K.

      Thanks for those. My DM was also pretty strict on putting too many points in skills and class skills – If you had anything more than 6 – it started working against you as well as for you. The main thing also was – your class skill determined how much money you had at the start of the game… and id DM did not let you go over like 3 – you had several thousands of e$ for your starting gear – which was crap. I had a nomad as my first char, but later on I usually went with either cop or the media guy. Most of our games involved cop players (either everybody was a cop or nobody) so we rarely had issues with netrunning, but damn… the netrunners took like a third of the book and it was so confusing – I never got to it. We used netrunners like in jonny mnemonic – just for information digging and hacking. But the best part are the psycho missions – when you are hunting, or rather running from them – the adrenaline was the best. Also, convering your own city into Cyberpunk was oure bliss – Cyberpunked style’d Warsaw in Poland is like the best we ever created in games, and also – universally accepted by almost all gamers in Poland.

  • Daniel Durham
  • Christopher Smith

    Cool! Counter Monkey’s back! I used to borrow the Cyberpunk 2020 rulebook from my local library as a kid. Never got anyone to play it with me but I loved the setting (this was before cyberpunkish stories were re-popularised via the Matrix etc).

  • codename_duck

    CP2070 is getting a bit too much of a hype train. Let’s at least wait for some gameplay footage, because the way I see it neither Wticher 1 nor Witcher 2 had any of the elements that made CP2020 great. It, along with the whole open world thing, is very much new territory for CD Projekt Red.

  • Christopher McMindflayer

    Newest smart Phones cost $600+ by themselves. They cost $200 when you are signing a new contract.

  • Lina Jones

    Well, that was a weird trailer.

    Personally, the magic is what was the most interesting for me with Shadowrun while the tech was less interesting to me. Funnily enough, I only actually started reading Shadowrun with version 4, so while I had an idea about the older tech, I didn’t realize how antiquated the stuff was in previous editions. :P

    If there was one complaint I had about 4e Shadowrun it’s that they had these techno-wizard types who used Resonance to link with computers, and basically the cyborg version of a Mage. And that was kind of the weird part… these Resonance guys were, blow for blow, almost exactly like Mages, just using technology instead of magic, and using the Matrix instead of the Astral World. While I liked the magic more than the tech, I feel like if they were going to include Resonance users based on a whole other power paradigm, they should have just given them a more distinct feel.

    Otherwise, I thought the setting was awesome, especially the various Critters, as animals mutated into beasts resembling the creatures of legend.

  • KOstantinos Piou ELeftheriadis

    i seriously doubt that im the only one who when spoony talked about having a saw-arm didnt think or said….GROOVY

    • Segatron

      Guilty on both charges, You Honor.

  • UmmonTL

    I’m really looking forward to the new game by CD Projekt, I miss the cheesy fun cyberpunk vision of the future. Deus Ex was a good game but man I wish you could be a character that just has fun in that world. They should do a GTA style sandbox city set in a cyberpunk future…

    Anyways, I only played Shadowrun 4thEd though I knew about the older stuff. I just never had a group that played it or had an interest in it. Seems to me like everything Spoony likes about Cyberpunk 2020 is in there and you could just run a campaign without the magic. Character generation rules exist for point buy, karma buy (equal to the way you spend xp later on) and priorities. The positive and negative qualities make for great well defined characters if you spend the time to look over them. And the shopping… oh god the shopping.

    With the armory you can completely customise any gun, vehicle or drone and I think another book did the same for any wireless communication device. So not only can you customize your character down to the lockpick in your little toe but you can make the Judge Dredd style ammo selection pistol that works only if it recognizes you and has a custom gold plated look. You can design your own drones deciding what sensors, tools and guns it has and you can have a custom-built delivery van with drone launch racks to get them deployed while driving. Also any Vehicle could be used like a drone with the right customization so you can basically have a remote controlled tank or three.

    The big problem I have with Shadowrun 4thEd is that the books are just designed pretty poorly. If you don’t have someone who knows the rules you can never keep them all in your head and you sometimes spend 30+ minutes looking them up while going over three different books. The 20th Anniversary Corebook makes it much better because it has a compiled index for pretty much all the other books but you still end up not knowing which rules apply when and how. When my group tried playing our group ended up fleeing from a Lone Star patrol car. We had a sniper who wanted to shoot out the back of our van at the car and he was minmaxed a little (Like Spoony said, so easy to do) so he had somewhere between 20-30 dice per shot. The patrol car was slightly armored and had tinted windows. So the way we could figure it out he could either shoot at the driver taking the penalty for not seeing the target and adding the cars armor rating to the drivers or he could shoot at the front window creating a hole depending on material and hits he rolls. He ended up just shooting at the car pretty much making it explode in a ball of fire from one shot. And thinking it over we realized, that armor is almost useless because you roll it against damage done but there are lots of ways to just add static damage once you are sure you can hit the target (Special ammo, full auto fire, etc.). A burst from an assault rifle in the hands of a skilled character could almost completely destroy a tank and then that guy can probably shoot 6 times in one combat round. And with hacking, rigging and magic on top of that there are just so many frikking rules you need to know… Even if we ended up getting it wrong it just illustrates what I mean, we spent an hour looking up the rules for this because it wa your get-to-know-the -system first game.

    • CheshireBat

      You’re right about that. They actually toned down the deadliness of uber skilled characters for 4th edition, but what it amounted to was: “You can’t get by with just a pistol anymore.”
      A huge combat pool, a pistol, and you could kill anything in the older games (and would have the benefit of having a very concealable weapon). A lot of older players hated that they now had to lug around assault rifles and the like.

  • Drew Taylor

    Shadowrun 4th edition has been out since 2005, with an updates version called the 25 anniversary edition that came out in 2009. They have also announced a 5th edition coming summer. I think comparing SR and CP2020 is rather interesting, SR generally has a better built system, but Cyberpunk is full on into the glam rock, out there-ness of Cyberpunk. I suppose it generally comes down to a preference of setting and whether you like simple rules (CP2020), or more complex and detailed rules with a bit more balance (SR)

  • Brevon Davis

    Frankly, this episode was boring. You spent an hour essentially reading out of a manual. I mean, it’s probably fun to play, but without a unifying story you’re just talking about technology that we’ve seen 100 times before in fiction.

    • thehivemind33

      I had fun watching it, personally.

  • Lazar Gruev

    Linkara, Spoony! Who’s gonna go beyond thunderdome?

    • Cthulhu07

      But the real question is will they ever get over Macho Grande?

      • Dan Hibiki

        I’ll never get over Macho Grande…

  • Nash Knight

    You look like a Bond villain while stroking Oreo :)

  • Mr. Gordo

    Is this video quieter or is it just me?

  • Emil Petrunov

    Definitely sounds like a fun experience 8)

  • cynic667

    Whoever puts a song from the band archive into their trailers automatically wins. And If it is such a beautiful trailer AND from CD Projekt Red: doublewin.

  • sbkMulletMan

    The first quote for the chainsaw-arm sounded like a weapon description that you would find in Dungeons of Dredmor. That kind of humor always makes me smile!

    And after seeing that skinny robo-bimbo from that animated Tekken movie, it’s good to see chainsaw-arms done *right*. In fact, comparing the blade width to the forearm width was the first thing I checked for. I love it when cyber-tekkie stuff is done in an imaginative, but *convincing* manner.

  • Tor Nordmark

    I personally preferred shadowrun 4th.
    This was mostly due to the simplification of the system so you just roll your skill+ability amount of dies, every 5 and 6 was a success. If you got bonuses you got that many plus in your dices.

    But i want to see how they will do in shadowrun 5th which is in the making right now.

  • Matthew Holon

    So… Spoony got to taste polish beer? No wonder he liked it.

    • doresh

      Europe: We might argue a lot with each other, but we sure know how to make beer ^_^

      • Pétur Ingi Sigbjörnsson

        I need to make a blue T-shirt with 12 yellow pints of beer in a circle with that written under it.

    • Vincent Beaudry

      As a canadian, we have a lot of American beers in store… I never buy them. they taste really bad it feels like drinking stagnant water… Good ol’ Unibroue’s the shit.

      • Atmos_Duality

        I live in Chicago, and even I never, ever touch our domestic mainstays unless it’s a local brewery (I’ve had a few over the last summer that were actually really good).
        But I’d rather have a Coke than anything like Coors, Budwiser, etc.

        • Daedalus

          Alcohol smells like nail polish remover, I’ll stick to soft drinks instead of hard liquor.

      • Silly_Hats

        Are you kidding me? The craft beer scene in America is massive, there’s so many great beers there.

        Rule of thumb is, never ever buy cheap alcohol.

        • Vincent Beaudry

          Craft beer is always great. unfortunatly these brewry don’t have enough funding to expand their market… hell, local brewry around Montreal barely make their way to South Shore’s supermarkets…
          I am comparing industrial VS industrial horse piss… even though Unibroue began as microbrewry, it was bought by Sleeman which was bought by the japanese giant Sapporo. Unibroue is everywhere in Québec and in alot of ”ROC” beer stores. and seriously, why would I buy Budweiser or Wildcat when, for the same price, I can have a ”Best Witbier in the world” Blanche de Chambly…

        • lightice

          There’s barely a country in existence that exports good beer in reasonable quantities. Whenever you buy American/German/Polish/whatever beer abroad, it’s almost always some shitty brand. People like to keep good beer for themselves, it seems.

          • UmmonTL

            The problem is to keep up high quality with high quantity. I’d say it can’t be done because you just can’t get enough ingredients from the same source and with beer you can taste every little difference in the ingredients.

            If a large brand wanted to make good beer available everywhere in a large country like america, the best way would be to buy up some good local breweries, up their production to deliver enough beer for one state and then sell it as “Brandbeer AL”, “Brandbeer AZ” etc. That would even start the sort of positive rivalry you want as PR where people discuss which states brandbeer was the best.

      • Das_Bass

        I would like to thank you Canadians for Blue Moon. Damn I love Blue Moon.

  • Matic Kačič

    Celular “dumb” phones cost somwhere in from 30 or 50 bucks and up, while the smartphones start at about 150 or 200 and easily go above 800 bucks mark. As for the announced game: Mike Pondsmith in involdved in the creation. I think it has a lot of potential, since they are capable of portraying dark and adult settings (both in terms of not bein afraid of US censorship and in terms of portraying comple indidividuals),

  • Al Kusanagi

    They recently announced the 5th edition of Shadowrun, along with a deckbuilding game, miniatures game, and board game. I think it’s all for the game’s 25th anniversary.

  • Ben Lykins

    Great sode spoony but I gotta say this was no toilet pizza toilet pizza

  • James Drover

    their making a new tabletop rpg version to.

  • EvilPoet85

    The massive amount of enthusiasm that leaps off the screen, is what makes this series good. Good job.

  • ORCACommander

    Unlocked cell phones without the contract subsidiary are an easy 300.

  • Christoffer Sandström

    Spoony, just so you know, that Chainsaw arm? Yea it was a Husqvarna. Swedish company that makes chainsaws among other things.

  • Gonçalo Tordo

    Beyond thunderdome count:

    Spoony: 6 Linkara: 2

  • Fixer40000

    Oh damn, Cyberpunk 2020. The reason my name is Fixer by the way.

    Our GM, Jamie, was an absolute stickler for details and ran a serious game.
    We didn’t just have the combat and missions, we had some scary political crap going on.

    When we made an enemy of a Corporation? They did not forget. Pissed off Militech, which in hindsight… was a pretty bad idea. Thing was, we had a chance to make amends by doing a mission for them, but no we had to screw it up and make things worse.

    Then, we figured we’d kidnap the Son of the Executive hounding us, then get him killed by dropping our stolen AV4 on top of his apartment.

    Then, we had to worry about each other, because Militech was trying to make deals behind our backs. We had to ice our netrunner when he tried to lure us into a trap. Turned out Militech had been looking into our backgrounds, and didn’t just promise us exactly what he wanted, but got hold of the people they cared about.

    My own character, A Techie called Stripe, was killed in a case of friendly fire. You see, after a couple of ripperdoc visits to dig out the bullets in his ass, he decided putting himself on the front line when he a serious amount of cash to hand was pretty damn stupid. I put together a full body replacement cyborg copy and made a complete duplicate of myself which I controlled with custom cyberware from a link in a nearby armoured van.

    This way, if anyone else in the party betrayed me, I’d be okay and get revenge. Awesome plan.

    What i didn’t account for was the paranoia of the other party members. The GM had informed one of them about this mysterious van that always seemed to be following the party around. Obviously it was a threat, so the solo threw a backpack of C6 under it and blew it to kingdom come. The cyber-stripe falling dead mid conversation while he was chatting to the others.

    Then they found out Stripe was a robot and wondered what the fuck was going on.

    This presented them a real problem, since Stripe was their contact for most of their deals. So in order to escape this latest disaster, they had to put the solo with zero technical skills into the inexplicable cyber body of the techie and try to fake having technical knowledge to run a tech heist in exchange for keeping their names of the grid so that Militech wouldn’t immediately find where they were and have them all murdered.

    Good times.

    • Mateusz K.

      This sounds exatcly like some of our best campaigns in Cyberpunk… ah, the nostalgia… now I wish I could play Cyberpunk again…

  • Valthek

    I’d like to point out that the 4th edition shadowrun books do feature a priority character creation system. Admitedly, they only added it afterwards (in the Runner’s Companion book).
    Other than that: Cyberpunk game: SQUEEEEEEE

  • HaakonKL

    Cell phone prices for the US:
    Also, cloud computing is an old way of doing computing. It was the way you did things in the sixties.
    And a tape player today can hold around 40tb worth of data. If you have to download much data…

    As for the voice recorder, it probably has a directional high-quality microphone, etc.

    • Matic Kačič

      Cloud comuting has origins in 50’s according to wikipedia, but hardrdly anybody knew about it, much less used it. And it was basicaly nothing like modern cloud computing, but the term itself was probably coined after 1990 (witch is the publish year of the sourcebook).
      Tape player can’t hold any data (Spoony didn’t read the description so it doesen’t say what kind of tape player it is, but it probably doesen’t refer to a walkman), however [data] Storage Tapes still have a lot of dissadvantages, that makes them useless for anything but storage device of backups – most obvious one: sequential read&write. Less obvious: must bee kept in dry and dustless place.
      As for voicerecorders: dictaphone even back then were small and relatively cheap.

      • HaakonKL

        Hardly anybody used computers in the fifties either. The term cloud computing just refer to nonlocal storage/computation. Originally, it was meant to refer to off-network such, but today, it’s just anything that’s done off your computer. That btw, is precisely how Unix computers used to be used: You got dumb boxes that could speak to the Unix machine, and then you told it what it should do, it did it, and sent the results back.

        And cheap dictaphones have crap microphones. So it stands to reason that the better ones were more expensive, since microphones of good quality cost money.

        As for tapes, it’s in the future, so obviously, they’ve fixed the dry and dustless
        problem. I mean, it’s 2012. Although strictly speaking you could argue that tapes are being faced out in favour of multiple redundant HDDs in several geographic locations as the favoured backup media, and have been since forever.

        HDDs are being faced out as the local storage medium of choice with a combination of networked storage (dropbox, par example), and SSDs.

        But I can still see the value of tape reader equipment. Imagine if you break into some corporation to steal their data. You can either use hours downloading everything into HDDs, or you can just bust open the safe and steal the backup tapes.

        And if you have to send a lot of data, it’s interestingly enough much cheaper and faster to dump tarballs to disk and then mail the HDDs then to publish an ftp directory or similarly transfer over the Internet. The Mail service has a hell of a bandwith (as many HDDs as you can safely cram into a package). So offline storage like tapes and HDDs are likely to still be around. Especially considering that it’s harder to snoop on an hdd in a letter than on an Internet server.

  • doresh

    Who wants Wolverine claws if you can have Barraka blades XD ?!

    Eye-build targeting systems are REALLY cool if you also have a Predator-like mini-turret somewhere on your body. Keeps your hands free, and you can always shoot at anything you’re currently looking at.

  • Vincent Beaudry

    Is 300 bucks for a day in Hospital expensive? or is it cheap?!? I dunno here it’s free..

  • Maria White

    HOLY *censored* God*censored* My *Censored* sweet *censored* Jesus!
    That preview is just pure and utter win. I am dead serious. I don’t usually ever get hyped for trailers, they lack so much of things that draw me in. But being serious here…
    I am going to buy that game. I just hope that it will be on a system I have and if not, sorry brother of mine, but I’m gonna borrow your 360. Even the song, (rap I guess?) had me rocking out to it. The design of the game looked fantastic.
    It just hooked into me like pinheads fish hook chain things. I’m gonna be there, this is gonna be the game I am going to buy. I don’t care if I have to sell small children to do so, I am THERE.

  • Sanny Folkesson

    At worst they make cyberpunk like witcher cyber vers, at best its a semi open world with vast variables on problem solving and character creations, either way is a win for me

  • Norrikan

    Unless I am massivly mistaken, SR3rd still had the prioritiy system.
    In terms of flavor the 2nd edition SR beats all the other by a mile, though 3rd will always hold a special place in my heart for having an amazing ruleset (once you got used to it, that is). Though I dislked it severly for doing away with the fluffy shadowtalk, which, thankfully, the german edition re-introduced for a time.
    Never played Cyberpunk, but we just adaped the ChromeBooks for Shadowrun, because they were so cool.
    As an aside, I dislike 4th ed SR, but I never managed to figure out the reason for this.

    • UmmonTL

      I only played SR4 so can’t really compare the system itself to the older versions. It has the Runner’s Companion book which gives rules for priorities and karma-buy systems. (The latter being the same as how you spend karma later in the game but otherwise like point-buy).

      As for what bothers me abouth 4thEd, while the modernization with wireless was necessary to keep up with the times, I think it hurt the game. Every piece of hardware you use is sending out signals that can be traced and potentially hacked. It seems cool at first but you always need to be aware of this.
      Also the there needs to be a really good rules compilation book. Looking up some of the rules means going over three differen books, finding several different possible answers and then just choosing one because you want to get on with the game.

  • Atmos_Duality

    Shadowrun remains my absolute favorite tabletop (I’m still running an SR3 game).

    Still haven’t found a decent copy of Cyberpunk 2020, though I do know most of that book’s stuff was converted into SR3 equivalents at some point (essentially all the non-redundant cyberware).

    So, random comments:

    (There is a program called NSRCG3, that helps create Shadowrun 3rd edition characters fairly comprehensibly. It’s still quite rough around the edges and is buggy, but it’s just so damn fun to play with.)

    Shadowrun 3rd edition was essentially an update to 2nd Edition, and still by far my favorite iteration of the game. (though it has flaw)
    It has several generation systems, and was the first to introduce Point-Buy officially, but the main generation system was still Priorities (Race, Magic, Resources, Attributes, Skills. A-E).

    Most of the core rules between SR2 and SR3 are directly interchangeable, with adjustments
    made to balance certain aspects of the game (especially Magic;
    Initiation was removed and then redone in Magic in the Shadows. It’s
    still fairly easy to min-max, but breaking the game outright required
    far more Karma than before).

    Also, due to some of the changes, “Face” characters (negotiators and interrogators) are much much more important in SR3 than SR2, and several of the mission-books supported that.

    Shadowrun 4th edition uses Point-Buy as its main system, but I think some other supplemental book re-added the Priority System (it wasn’t very good). I don’t like some of the things 4th Edition changed, and unfortunately those were fairly major changes:

    -The removal of Deckers and introduction of the all-wireless Matrix (which is ten kinds of stupid if you know how networks are actually built and secured. I have no problems at all with Augmented Reality; Shadowrun basically had the primitive form of that in “Trideo”. I do have problems with just how easy it is to abuse, and how it removes more of the element of Proximity from the game)

    -Cybermancers (which along with their predecessors in Otaku, which I also hated) completely betrays the whole “Magic vs Tech/Rational vs Irrational” theme in the entire series. Cybermancers also render most other archetypes thematically and practically obsolete.

    It’s completely bonkers what you can do to break the game as a Cybermancer. Hilarious the first time, really obnoxious after that.

    But I do like how much cleaner the mechanics are: It’s much easier to calculate most tests.

  • Ian Fay

    Aw c’mon.

    You can’t talk about the ridiculous/awesome cyberware in CP2020 without showing/mentioning the Mr Studd/Lady Midnight.

    Yes, you too can have a cyberwang (or cyber vajajay)!

    • Mateusz K.

      Yes! All night, every night! The Mr. Studd cyber implant is the future!

      • Pétur Ingi Sigbjörnsson

        The Mr. Studd cyber implant is last years mode my friend, it is time for a upgrade.

        • Christopher Wynn

          Don’t forget the Midnight Lady implant. No more faking it for you!

  • Pétur Ingi Sigbjörnsson

    Text in trailer at 2:14:

    “Do you like our latest creation? We certainly hope so! :) You may
    remember that we sometimes send you guys secret messages like this.
    it’s a great way for us to speak right to you instead of burying
    ourselves in corporate mumbo-jumbo. So let’s begin!

    First of all—have you noticed all the details in our teaser (yes,
    it’s a teaser, we’ll make a proper trailer in the future)? If you know
    the Cyberpunk setting, there are some things you can spot, like
    implants—look for the weapon hands and the real skin—corporate emblems
    that should look familiar, and more. Happy hunting!

    You’re probably curious about the release date. It’s currently
    scheduled a way off, in 2015, but in truth, the delivery date is more
    like, “when it’s done.” We will release Cyberpunk to you when we’re
    convinced it is nothing but pure, refined, unadulterated awesome. we
    want it to be the most kick ass futuristic RPG ever—ok, maybe this
    sounds pretty bully, but it is our actual goal! You judge if we deliver

    Ok—and you may wonder why we announced our game so early before
    the release. The reason is that we’re still building our dev team. So if
    you are a talented dude or dudette, willing to work in a really
    different company (gamers rule & boring corporate stuff drools!) on a
    super ambitious project, send us your application right now:

    So, you want to know what kind of game Cyberpunk 2077 will be?
    The short description is that it will be a story-heavy, nonlinear, open
    world RPG based on the well known Cyberpunk pen & paper system and
    setting. Building open world games is something we are mastering right
    now, and we believe that properly joining nonlinear gameplay with
    excellent story telling will bring a totally new quality. Hmm. We’ll
    tell some more about it soon!

    And that’s not all that’s new. We are about to reveal our other
    project, which is much closer to being completed. And yes, it will also
    be a fully open-world game with an intense story. You can probably guess
    the game we’re talking about. ;-) On the 5th of February it will all be

    So stay tuned, as we will have quite a lot to show and tell you soon!

    We are waiting for you on our newly created forum called Afterlife—what other name could we have chosen for it? :)

    CD Projekt RED Team”

    • Rémi Maloney

      Thanks for sharing!

      • Pétur Ingi Sigbjörnsson

        There is sometimes a message to the audience in open books, text or on TV and computer screens in teasers like this.

        Still I have not seen a message like this for a long time.

        • Rémi Maloney

          You still have to be on the lookout for it. And try to find the perfect half-second to freeze the video. Kudos sir

  • LeoMoon

    Dude in 1990 I was just born…

  • Mateusz K.

    I knew Spoony would talk about Cyberpunk. Interesting fact. In Poland (CD Projekt Red is a Polish company) it was the Cyberpunk which was one of the most popular RPG systems. Shadowrun came out many years later and was generally considered another version (by some even called a blatant ripoff) of the Cyberpunk so not many people actually played it. I played a lot of Cyberpunk and only years later had some experience with the Shadowrun – to me, it was an interesting concept, but it was always Cyberpunk as the best “cyberpunk” system out there.
    CD Projekt Red Guys are probably around my age and if so – they spent their teen years playing Cyberpunk like me. That is why they chose Cyberpunk as the next logical step in their awesome nostalgia trip for their games. The biggest systems in Poland around that time were: Cyberpunk, Warhammer (already a game) and AD&D (already a bunch of games and outdated by todays standards) and for some of the most hardcore gamers their were the Time Crystals (not sure if correct translation of the title) – our own, Polish system, which came way back before others came on the mainstream market – this system was like pure math – stats and equasionts for every aspect of the game – but people who played it a lot are even older than me.
    So, for the CD Projekt (and mad props to Spoony for pronouncing their name correctly) could only take up Cyberpunk as their “next big things”.
    Still, I have to correct Spoony on something… untill the Witcher, CD Projekt was only (but still the largest one) a distributor for games in Poland – they have localized over 200 games, mostly major brands, but the Witcher and Witcher 2 are so far their only games which they created themselves. Still… considered some of the best games out there.

  • Drak

    Just a heads up but there’s actually a message hidden in the static of the trailer. Gives a bit more info about the game and their other game in the works.

  • Andreas Lidström

    LoL! Husqvarna is a swedish manufacturer of lawnmowers and chainsaws.

  • Liezl Bohnen

    You’ve sold me. I wanna play this game now. I’m a SUCKER of 80s – 90s “Futuristic” settings.
    I need to try and find this game here in the ass-crack of the world and then find people to play with me!

  • Niveon

    Hey Spoony, what’s your opinion on Anarchy Online, as it was claimed by the developers to be heavily inspired by Cyberpunk?

  • MrRuse

    So Bioware was about implants, not the company? “No glands, replaced by tech. No digestive system, replaced by tech. No soul, replaced by tech.” and all that jazz?

    Sure you’re not talking about the company who had its mind and soul replaced by the inhuman machines of EA?

    • Pétur Ingi Sigbjörnsson

      Yes I’m sure, this Bioware has a more agreeable EULA.

  • doresh

    Stars Without Numbers (a Traveller-ish sci-fi game based on oldschool d20) has a cyberpunk expansion. I think I have to read it that one again…

  • Tristan Elliston


  • Wyatt

    God I’m excited for Cyber Punk 2077, I’ve been waiting for a game like it ever since I first played Beneath a Steel Sky back in ’95.

    • CheshireBat

      You could have played CyberMage: Darklight Awakening, which came out in ’95.

      A very advanced game for the time. Vehicles; jumpjets; realistic corpses; a bunch of weapons that could be found, stolen, or bought; gambling; excellent character movement; solid soundtrack; good writing; user-friendly features (such as logged conversations and such). Strategy was required, but there were usually several approaches to every situation.

      Although not exceptional by today’s standards, it was an excellent game that was ahead of its time. Unfortunately Quake and Duke 3D came out some months later, in ’96, and it never received much attention, a fate it shared with System Shock.

      • Wyatt

        I own CyberMage and it is a damn good game, and a very underrated game at that, but it wasn’t really as open ended as I wanted it to be, yeah you could drive vehicles and do what you want, but like Deus Ex Human Revolution, it was limited to small, confined areas, and I’ve always wanted to see a game like CyberMage, that works like an RPG, but plays like a sandbox game.

        • CheshireBat

          You and me both. I’m not sure how sandboxy it will really end up to be, considering their earlier games (all good in their own right, mind). Still, hope springs eternal.

          • professorb

            Holy crap, and here I thought I was the only person who played CyberMage! Glad to see other people recognize that game was awesome.

          • Ivan Filipe Stefani

            I don’t know why, but CD Projekt reminds me Troika Games, which made Vampire Bloodlines. And the Elder Scrolls are sandbox too…

        • Guest

          Regarding Sandbox RPG, I thought Vampire Bloodlines were pretty good. Deux Ex HR had a lot of indoor buildings accessible, so the concept of “confined” is more a matter of perspective. Someone might feel more trapped in GTA, for example, since you can only enter on certain buildings, and the world fell kinda dead, don’t you think?

  • Hong Meiling 門門
  • Kyle Rybski

    If you like Cyberpunk 2020 for its setting, play Eclipse Phase some time. Or just read it. Totally worth it.

    • CheshireBat

      Eclipse Phase is a transhumanist setting (done far, far better than V3), which could be considered “cyberpunk all grown up” but it does have a quite different mood.

      Cyberpunk 2020 (and 2013) was about rebellion, tearing down the machine, living a short and brutal (but REAL, man) life while converting your body into a psychotic machine. Your dream would likely be to become a martyr and a legend.

      Eclipse Phase is well past that, the hangover, and the realization that things aren’t quite hopeless. Plenty of corruption and horror around, but there’s a sense that you can do something about it.

      The specifics tend to contrast too. Take drugs. CP2020 was well known for having a stance on drugs as complicated as “drugs are bad, mmkay.” The drugs were designed to screw you over, and the players would soon avoid them like the plague. This was even more noticeable in Cybergeneration, where Pondsmith flat out wrote that the characters didn’t do drugs, because they had seen what it did to the older generation.

      In Eclipse Phase, drugs aren’t automatically the enemy. There’s a potential for abuse, but nootropic drugs are very real, and can be extreme useful in the short term.

      CP2020 was very keen on the idea of selling your soul (well, humanity) for power. Your cybernetics would cause you to become emotionally dead, or — pushed far enough — turn you into a psychotic killing machine.

      In Eclipse Phase, cybernetics and bioware are your friends.The concept of humanity is deliberately left to the individual.

      I could go on and on, but I’ve ranted long enough. I love both settings, Eclipse Phase being hands down my favorite RPG, but they’re far from the same thing. They do feature some of the same subjects, but deal with them very differently. I heartily recommend for anyone to try out Eclipse Phase, but not while expecting to get Cyberpunk 2020.

      • Kyle Rybski

        All well said. I’d like to think that’s largely the comment that I was too tired/lazy to write.

        I am guilty of wanting to pimp Eclipse Phase anywhere it’s remotely relevant, but really, it seemed to me that the aspects of Cyberpunk that Noah was specifically geeking out over are all also prominently featured in Eclipse Phase. If I got the impression that he was more into it for its high school brand of nihilism, I’m sure I wouldn’t have drawn the connection.

        • CheshireBat

          “…the atmosphere, the way it was put together. It was kind of the mix of heavy metal and cyberpunk. Very dark, very grim. Everything was very intense.”
          He noted that he liked the idea of cyberpsychosis. Additionally, Eclipse Phase doesn’t have catalogs of gear. I mean, it encourages the GM to make varieties of the base equipment and implants, and there’s plenty of opportunity for the GM and players to come up with neat things on their own. But leafing through book after book of neatly arranged items? None of that.
          That said, it does have SUCH a cool setting, has excellent balance (the revised editions more than 1st), and excels in a number of ways. I wholly understand your desire to pimp Eclipse Phase, and I believe I’ve posted about the game for other Counter Monkey videos too.
          I’m probably being pedantic beyond reason, but I’m always a bit wary of burning people on a game they might have enjoyed, had they but looked into it with different expectations.

  • Valérie Dicaire

    Wow sounds very promising!!! What song plays during the trailer?? Well you’ve definitely sold me on the game! Played The Witcher (I am yet to play the second game though) and you can see all the attention to details and the sheer amount of love put into it… I expect no less from future releases from them and especially this title.

  • Robert Carriere

    Needle fingers were AWESOME! Buddy doesn’t want to get on the boat like the rest of us (Spoony is correct on the “don’t get on the boat” front, but if that’s where the DM is taking you, not much you can do about it)? Just pat the guy on the back, say “It’s ok, you don’t have to get on the boat.”, and then you jab a finger into his next and drug him like Mr T before a flight!
    Pro-tip – keep track of which fingers you loaded with what – the DM may call you on it, and you may have just killed him. :D

    • Segatron

      Okay, tell me which finger you just used… “consults sheet” You have just injected a 200 pound mohawked man with Cow’s Milk. Roll for initiative.

  • Segatron

    Just think President Obama might have a copy of Cyberpunk given to him at a press conference.

    I think people should get those books just because they are good reference for the cyberpunk /cyberspace mindset. I’ll get it just for Ideas, even if I never get a single game going.

  • Game Master

    Hey Spoony, 3rd edition Shadowrun still defaults to the Priority system (which I also love), but there’s an optional point based method in the Shadowrun Companion. 4th edition is reversed, it defaults to Point Buy but the Companion has a Priority method. Pardon the “Game Master” name, it’s annoying and I keep forgetting to change it.

  • GunsmithKitten

    Awww yea, CP2020. The zenith of my GM’ing and playing gaming experiences. Five year long campaign detailing Arasaka and Militech trading world wide blows with the PC’s as the fists, usually working for the black dragon of the east, though one stark turnabout had them switching sides as dupes in suicide missions. Like Spoony, I flat out dug the action movie/anime/noir mix that CP2020 brought to the table, and we ran with the soap opera possibilities as surely as the tactical bloodshed. Plenty of hard drinking, hard lovin (and equally hard break ups), and bacchanalian sub plots dotted between the battles, as well it should be.

  • GunsmithKitten

    Also, there were other settings. I spent half of the campaign we did in the UK, just because the Rough Guide to the UK was one of the most entertaining game supplements I ever read. Hell, just reading the “where to eat and drink” section was worth the price of the book alone. That it also had the best pound for pound handgun in the game didn’t hurt either.

  • saibot216

    I actually played my first game of Shadowrun with a friend of mine, it was very tedious, but it made sense. It was still really fun.

  • Anyone00

    I just got around to watching a video Mike Pondsmith talking about CyberPunk 2020/2077: in addition to being the creator of the setting he also has an awesome voice. Hopefully some of his visits to Poland will include a few sessions in the recording booth.

    Here’s looking forward to 2015.

  • likalaruku

    I saw that trailer on The Escapist. Since I don’t associate guns or modern clothing with RPGs, I assumed it was an FPS game. Well, you know what they say about assuming….

  • Philip Royse

    I may not be into cyber punk that much…so excuse me when I say this trailer rubbed me the wrong way.

    ok so what do we see, a bunch of annoying slow motion with beautiful CG that tells us absolutely nothing about the gameplay….with a woman in her underwear on her knees and having blades coming out of her arms, so there’s your pandering to the male demographic….ok that last bit was mean, I admit…but surely I am not the only one who was bugged by this trailer.

    Remember, if the trailer has little to no gameplay, what do they NOT want to show us?

    • Valérie Dicaire

      It’s a TEASER trailer of a game that’s extremely early in it’s developpement stage. It doesn’t even have a full team of developper assembled yet, so it’s very doubtful they would have any gameplay at all to show off… It’s only meant to get you mouth watering and excited about one of their upcoming title based on a PnP rpg, and giving hints of what to expect: the cyberpunk setting, the atmosphere, the architecture, and so on. Not to mention a few reference to the original game with some names (MAX TAC, Dynalar, Kiroshi) and some subtle touchs (the poster of the woman on the cyberware store window is an actual picture from one of the books).

    • Shay

      Not really into cyber punk myself; but I think the trailer is interesting. Yeah, when I saw the girl, I was a little put off at first and the slow motion seemed kinda cliche, but it stopped bothering me after watching the trailer a few more times (though, that’s only because the song is seriously awesome. And yeah, Valerie already said it. Game is in the early stages, so no gameplay).

    • lightice

      The woman comes straight from one of the game’s sourcebooks. The whole thing was one huge homage to the fans of the PnP RPG where just about everything was lifted from various illustrations of the game books.

      I was bugged by this trailer, but my reason was the one above: it didn’t show any evolution of the franchise, just rehashing the old. Ofcourse the point was probably to invoke a sense of nostalgia in the viewers, so it was probably deliberate.

  • draxo

    hah, cyberpunk.. I hated it due to the d6 system and how horribly it meshed with the fumble system it also had. so 1 in 6 attacks fumbled and could mess you up. My guy was an engineer and had a rocket launcher arm. first attack rolled a 1. Dead.

    Great system right there!

    • CheshireBat

      CP2020 used D10s, except for certain damage rolls and whatnot.

  • Arwijn

    Cyberpunk 2020:
    Hurray! I was looking forward to seeing more Armored Police posing to execute
    good looking women, because we don’t have enough police state propaganda
    crap around as it is!

  • Peter Paizs

    Extra kudos for using The Bard’s Song :)
    Also, it’s really strange seeing you with a ponytail, I got kind of used to seeing you with your hair let out. Not bad, just weird =)

  • Casey Williamson

    For the ridiculous pics of cyberpunk dolls…

    Go here…

    • Louis Deschênes

      Well personally I have to admit they DID put a lot of effort with the dolls… But there dolls.

  • Corey Mcintyre

    Please make a Vlog with your opinion on The Witcher games Spoony!

  • Gerry Lassaline

    I don’t know what it is but neither videos are loading first I get the commercial and then it just keeps loading all the other videos seem to work just find but these two I can’t seem to get going. Is it just me or are others having this problem?

  • Stone_Monkey

    First comment here. Just to correct Spoony on a few things…

    Cyberpunk 2020 was actually the 2nd Edition of the game. As I’m probably about 10 years older than him I played a LOT of Cyberpunk 2013 (ironically), which was released in about ’87 iirc. This had an insanely dangerous combat system, which was toned down a lot for 2020 – so much so that my gaming group were absolutely terrified of going into combat – shit got real in a hurry.

    There were other settings; 2 iirc. One was the world of Walter Jon Williams “Hardwired” (the sourcebook was even written by him) and the other was the world of George Alec Effinger’s Budayeen books (“When Gravity Fails” etc. a really interesting future Near and Middle East setting).

    The Outer Space stuff was quite interesting too. Quite realistically dangerous. They had some truly mental zero-g combat rules.

  • Andreas Törnqvist

    I actualyl started laughing out loud when I read “Husqvarna Chainripp” – Husqvarna is a Swedish tools/weapons manufacturer etc which is very old and established here. Apparently also in America. That was fun for a Scandinavian to see.

  • Remus

    Music: Bullets by Archive

  • Robert Cousineau

    What Spoony is mentioning in 25:30 is Cyberpunk V3. I own it, as well as a few sourcebooks for it. Its TERRIBLE. There are several “Alt Cults”, one of which every character belongs to. Including a disneyland style Atlantis themepark with bio engineered monsters. In addition to the barbie doll art in the main book there are several sourcebooks and almost all of the art is a mix of terrible 3D or the aforementioned dolls with the rare picture of Mike Pondsmith in a wig. To be fair though, one of the V3 sourcebooks about npc gangs is actually a fairly entertaining read.

    All of the Altcults were retarded and impossible to take seriously, the art and rule direction Mr. Pondsmith went is ridiculous. Reading the Foreward of V3 makes Mr. Pondsmith look like a complete nutbar. Thankfully, he seems to be doing much better now and I am stoked for 2070

    • CheshireBat

      Indeed. Pondsmith seemed to reject CP2020 somewhat with Cybergeneration, but he really went all out on that with V3.
      Personally, I like transhumanism, but V3 was just…. it was bad. It was very, very bad. It failed on just about all fronts, which was quite an accomplishment.

  • Jegsimmons

    do people remember the ShadowRun game that came out?
    i thought it was fun.

  • SunOvaGun

    Holy crap that trailer was awesome I’m with Spoony I sqweed at this. Awesome Counter Monkey as always Spoony.

    • Pétur Ingi Sigbjörnsson

      Well I think that was the most awesome job advertisement ever.

  • Denderfurger

    god i just love cyberpunk and Shadowrun!

  • disqus_sADH3c9675

    This is probably gonna be buried, but here’s the creator of Cyberpunk 2020 talking about 2077 and working with CD Projekt.

  • Ernesto Nanez Porras

    I’ve seen several of the Lets Play ripper videos as well as the Ultima reviews on youtube recently uploaded and this Counter Monkey. Just curious: is there a particular reason why you seem to be going back to youtube now Noah?

    • doresh

      Because SpringBoard is horrible for longer videos? At least for me, I always have to find the sweet spot when buffering the videos, because loading for to long (or basically doing ANYTHING besides staring at the video) causes SpringBoard to clear the entire buffer for some reason Oo

  • Disthron

    About the cell phones, they still charge you by the minute. Also, if you buy an iPhone outright it will cost you around $500, an iPad is $600 ($599.95). I remember the Experia Play (the PSP phone) was $900 to buy outright when it first came out, and that wasn’t that long ago! It was $79 per month on a 12 month plan.

    I’m the kind of guy who doesn’t like to deal with credit, I prefer to buy a phone outright rather than go on a plan for 24 months or whatever. So I looked into this. Although, these are “smart phones” you can get a bear basic phone for like $40 that dose nothing but make calls and maybe play a crappy Java game or 2.

    I have to say, when I first hurd about this, I imediatly rejected the idea of people going crazy becouse they had too much cyber-tech in them. Perticularly the explanation of the mechanical parts “rebelling” against the human parts. If anything, it would be the human parts that would reject the foreign objects and even then you wouldn’t go crazy you would just get sick and die.

    I could accept that people who had computer interfaces in them could be hacked or get a virus or go crazy for some other reason (people have identity crises now without cyber-tech and most of them don’t go on killing sprees). But just having cyber-tech in you? come on.

    • Lina Jones

      I imagine that stuff could start to chafe, like a permanent wedgie. That would drive anyone crazy after a while.

  • Dragon Nexus

    I was completely neutral on CD Projekt Red while I played The Witcher. I enjoyed the game a lot, but it wasn’t blowing me away or anything.

    But the opening two weeks of Wither 2’s release made me fall in love with them. They learned that the DRM program installed with the game was hindering the game’s performance. They found a select few had 70% worse performance with the DRM installed. This was a basic DRM designed to prevent pirates from stealing their game.
    They released a patch in the first week that uninstalled it. Completely. Right down to the CD key screen on installation. Oh sure the CD key screen shows up, but if it updated the installation files as you went it just requires you to type *something* in the box and it’ll allow you in. They risked getting sued because providing their fans with a solid gameplay experience free from DRM was more important to them.

    A week later they released a crap ton of DLC that had previously been store exclusive all for free. All the DLC and updates they’ve released for The Witcher 2 since then have all been free.

    The guys there are clearly gamers and fantasy nerds before they’re anything else, just happy to get their work out there and enjoyed by as many people as possible.

  • Aiddon

    all I had to wonder about that trailer was why the FUCK they didn’t just give the woman some past. I mean, holy SHIT guys I thought the Witcher games came off as sexist at times, but this is kinda grimy and sleazy.

    Anyway, I’m glad cyberpunk is getting back into prominence. I’m really looking forward to the new Shadowrun

    • Valérie Dicaire

      I don’t get the outrage over the woman in her underwear at all. (and this is coming from a woman) Ok sure, we get no explanation or reason why she’s so underdressed, but it’s really not bothering me, mainly because I’ve always imagined cyperpunk settings to BE extremely grim and sleazy. It’s a possible future in which vices are overbearingly predominant: black markets, drugs, crimes, prostitution, pornography is rampant, to the point of being considered normality. So I guess what I’m saying is, if the setting calls for it then it’s tolerable. It kinda was the same with The Witcher – that game was one helluva grim and dirty world, so it didn’t feel out of place (and besides nothing was forcing the player to play a womanizer banging everything that moved). What WAS out of place was the stupid collecting cards, ugh! Anyway, I’m far FAR more annoyed with games that have chainmail bikini gladed women in a very tamed or neutral sort of setting because not only is it incredibly unpratical (though I can turn a blind over that point), but oversexualization in such a setting is uncalled for.

  • Agrippa911

    I played the hell outa Cyberpunk back in the early nineties. Never liked the idea of Shadowrun, I didn’t want elves and orcs in my cyberpunk thank you very much.

    Most of these cyberpunk type games probably dated themselves incredibly, we’re shite at predicting the future. Tell someone from the 40’s about home computers and they’ll laugh at you. You’ll get the same reaction if you were to tell someone in 1990 about smart phones.

    Loved the game trailer even featured some art work from the original V1 of the game. Nice nod.

    • Robert Cousineau

      The funny part is the “grandfathers of Cyberpunk” hate Shadowrun too.

  • Dan Schuett

    I actually just recently got asked to join a Cyberpunk 2020 game. Buddy of mine said he was starting one up, asked if I knew anything about it, gave me the book and I am so in right now. Spoony’s right it hasn’t aged particularly well in many respects but the background and the world it creates are just so interesting.

    Things I’ve learned from reading the book; if you’re in a firefight and the other guys call for an ambulance RUN! If you’re in a firefight and want to call an ambulance DON’T! If you happen upon an ambulance, turn around, walk away, and once you’re out of sight RUN! Seriously I peeked at some of the suggested encounters for various locations and times of day and the only people more heavily armed than the ambulances are the professional corporate kill squads, and they have a 70% chance of deciding you’re the reason they were called and opening fire, whether you or a friend called for them or not.

    Also Cyberpunk videogame by the guys who made the Witcher. SQUEEEEEEEE!

    • Wes Shanks

      Actually, calling Trauma Team is one of the easiest ways to clear a area, due to the dual-mounted mini-guns and the assault team that ride in them for the EMT’s own protection.

      • Dan Schuett

        Oh no doubt, like I said aside from corporate kill squads they’re packing the most heat out of anyone, the problem is that 70% chance they’ll decide you are part of the problem.

        • doresh

          Well, I sure hope the player characters know how to hide.

        • CheshireBat

          I’m not entirely sure where you get those numbers? Kinda curious.

          The best way to summon Trauma Team was to break your TT card. That let them determine who the paying customer is, and lets them deal with anyone still firing (you’re probably fine, but your friends might be screwed).

          Standard procedure (according to the core book — it might have been revised elsewhere) is to get to the client first, then pacify the area. A common tactic was to land next to the client, blocking enemy fire, and then blow them away before, during, or after getting the client into the ambulance, depending on the situation.

          Of course, even if they killed you, they could probably bring you back.

  • Xandermorph

    Is anyone else having trouble making this video play? I know I have everything up-to-date that I’d need, but this video will just play the commercial bumper and then sit there spinning its wheel and never load.
    Anyone else experiencing this? I’ve also noticed it happening at Cinemassacre a little bit.

  • Vaughan MacDonald

    “They’re not $800!”
    Oh yes they are.

  • Jared Michael Anjewierden

    I haven’t seen much of Cyberpunk or Shadowrun, but an amazing setting (system is middling to good) is Eclipse Phase – everyone is backed up to a computer ‘cortical stack’ at the base of their spine, and can be backed up off site as well, so death is cheap. (New bodies a bit less so) In a nut shell, couple decades back technology singularity hit, the defense AI’s went nuts, (and became truly sentient) desolated earth and forcibly stole the cortical stacks of about 90% of humanity… and then just disappeared. Humanity lives in a bunch of small habitats throughout the solar system, animals have been uplifted, and countless millions still exist as info-refugees, unable to get even a robot body to ‘sleeve’ into.

    You can play as an octopus, a Cortana like character, (even one housed in a clone body) have your mind sleeved in a sex doll or change genders on the fly, a combat model, whatever.

    • CheshireBat

      A quick way to summarize the system would be “a percentile version of 4th edition Shadowrun.” Which is exactly what it is. The basic system was created by the same guy, mainly due to his friendship with the developers. It’s a nice, clean system that’s usually pretty balanced.

      Eclipse Phase provides an excellent setting, and Jared here is just touching on its coolness.

      I will say that while it has plenty of outre concepts, it tries to ground them in reality to some degree. Aside from the technology created by those rogue AI, which remains beyond human comprehension and which often seemingly violates physics, it tends to give you a fair idea of how it could work in real life. Cutting edge materials, such as aerogel, are pretty commonplace too.

      It’s not hard SF, but it’s certainly not Rifts or such either.

  • doresh

    That’s quite likely. I also think there’s a slight problem of having so many foreign objects in your body. Who know what kind of drugs you have to take to get this all to work.

  • CheshireBat

    The problem with that is that it’s all about the reasons for the enhancements, as well as the attitude concerning it. Sort of like how some people have a healthy attitude about the cosmetic surgery they might get, while others… really, really don’t.

    The concept is a bit iffy, but there are naturally some factors that help make it slightly more plausible.
    Phantom pains, for example. Your metal leg just itches and hurts all the time, and you can’t make it stop.
    Your new boosterware makes you move like greased lightning, react almost before the other guy has acted, but you find it hard to interact with a world that seems to move in slow motion.
    Since you bought that chainsaw arm (which you were totally only going to use to carve wooden sculptures), you haven’t had a normal conversation with anyone. People react with fear and avoidance, or intense aggression. You’re getting isolated and paranoid.

    The idea with extreme enhancements is naturally being that stranger in a strange land, so some emotional deadening or other issues would seem plausible, but cyberpsychosis remains iffy.

  • Disthron

    But that’s not what it says Dude. It says that no matter how benign, necessary or sensible the cyberware is, it’s all evil. And I call bullshit on that.

  • Christopher Wynn

    Odd that with Cyberpunk 2077 coming out MAYBE as early as 2015 (MAYBE), …that we also have TWO Shadowrun games coming. Both are sandbox games, with one being a solo stand-alone for the PC, and the other a F2P MMO. They already have gameplay videos, while CP2077 only has a movie.

    • Matic Kačič

      Obviously those 2 games must have been in development a lot longer than this game (MMOs generaly have a lot longer development circle). 2077 doesen’t even have a full crew (the Teaser was outsourced).

      • Christopher Wynn

        Not sure when they started, but they were both announced in 2012. CP2077 says it won’t have anything playable til AT LEAST 2015…while both Shadowrun games says they will have betas ready to go by 2013.

        Considering how long it took the craptastic V3 to pop…and that Pondsmith is a bit of a loon these days…I think Shadowrun will be up and running LONG before we even see closed betas, and the quality of CP2077 is in question.

  • IHeart28

    Another awesome Counter Monkey, can’t help but really enjoy this series. Cyberpunk is always awesome though, it has a way of giving so much creative ideas. The trailer also looked pretty cool too! And oreo’s cute as always

  • Valérie Dicaire

    I already stated that I loved the teaser trailer but there’s a thing
    or 2 that keeps nagging me, minor things, but I’m just too obsessive to
    just let it rest. NITPICK MODE: ENGAGED.

    – Why are the cops
    shooting at a suspects that’s already subduded by one of their one? In a
    few early shots you can catch a glimpse of the cop behind her: his
    boots and leg, his gun. So we know he’s there from the start even though
    he is yet to be revealed. Why take the risk of gunning down one of your
    own man…? Seems odd!

    – The angle at which the bullets are
    coming from keeps changing! The first bullet comes in a straight angle
    and only ricochets because of the shape of the woman’s face. Same goes
    for the bullets hitting her on the shoulder and abdomen, they don’t even
    ricochet at all, they instead get obliterated instantly meaning they
    were coming at a flat angle. So this makes it makes look as though the
    woman is slightly turned to face the gunners, but in the VERY NEXT SHOT
    you see flying bullets coming in a completely different angle from her,
    they look as though they’re coming toward us instead! At that angle, the
    bullets should’ve hit her on the back side of her arm and shoulder, and
    on the OTHER side of her face. And in the shot that shows the entire
    scene, you see the cops were indeed slightly behind her… How did that
    work…? xD

    NITPICK MODE: DISENGAGED. But it’s still so pretty to watch… :3

    • doresh

      I’m actually more concerned that the government is arming their law enforcement with styrofoam bullets oO

      • Matic Kačič

        I don’t really know how subdermal armor is supposed to work (or rather look like) in Cyberpunk2077, but I think she had it. It’s why the bulets were obliterated on contact with her, not becouse they were made of styrofoam.

        • doresh

          That was just me joking about the fact they equip their law enforcement with bullets they KNOW are useless against any serious threat.

    • Jesse Kennedy

      Watch the whole trailer and you’ll see at the end that both the cyborg and the cop holding the gun know each other. It’s implied that he was the one who (indirectly) caused the rampage. The entire trailer (and the attached music) has a theme of how easily life can go pear-shaped in the setting. The cop literally was taking personal responsibility for what he caused by putting her down himself..

  • Kane Bunce

    They did have cellphones back then. They were basically those brick phones, but worse… they were brick phones in suitcases. There is an episode of Cheers from 1989 or something like that where Frasier had one.

    • CheshireBat

      I’ve used one in the past. Ridiculously expensive, high upkeep, and it had a battery that allowed about 30 minutes of call time.

  • Carlos Alexandre

    Pfft. Celes is overrated.

  • Trenin Bayless

    While you were discussing Cyberpunk as a genre, I have to bring up whether or not you have heard of a relatively recent game that has come out called Eclipse Phase. The books are free to download as documents from the following URL:

    or as a .pdf from other websites:

    The company willingly put copies online, so relax about copyright law.

    I just bring this up, because in the same way that Cyberpunk, as a genre, is based on our expectations of what the future would be in the 1980’s Eclipse phase is our current expectations of what the future will be.

    The game itself is fascinating (the lore, i haven’t dug into the mechanics yet, but it seems solid). Because this is a new game, I understand not many people have not read it. But i would love to see an episode of counter-monkey which mentions this as i’d love to hear your take on this game in concept.

    The setting is post-human, post-cyberpunk in a pretty fundamental way, but it still has a fantastic way of relating to a lot of the things you seem to discuss in this video.

    Any way, thanks for the video.

    • doresh

      I heard about this before. Didn’t know they were giving it away for free, though.

      • Trenin Bayless

        They have an online srd like pathfinder and i think they put it on pirate bay on principal, considering the style of the game and its contents, it’d be difficult for them not-to and not-be horrible hypocrites…

  • Omnikus Schlotter

    Husqvarna Chainsaw Arm? Lol, that’s a real company. Like, in real life. Do they know about this ^^?

    • Strelnikov

      They tried to make one.

      The have a statue in their corporate courtyard to all the techs who were sliced to pieces.

      • Omnikus Schlotter


  • Justin Alexander

    I was part of a gaming group at one time that wanted to do a Cyberpunk 2020 game, but the exact words they used were “Let’s base it off Cyberpunk 2020, but use the Shadowrun 20th Anniversary rules because that game was fucking insane.”

    Also. Spoony. Spoony Deadlands. Let’s play Deadlands Spoony.

  • Xcom107

    This idea of augmentation sounds really cool. Could somone tell me what other cybertech augmentations you can get and what they do? Thank you

    • CheshireBat

      Dude, there were 4 chrome books, 1 Maximum Metal, the stuff in the core book, and some stuff scattered about in the other books. Even with extremely brief descriptions, I don’t think it can be done in less than 1000 words.

  • Thomas Johansson

    I’m surprised no one has mentioned Shadowrun Returns that was kickstarted by Jordan Weisman and his crew. From the updates it seems it’s coming along nicely and it’ll probably be really nice to play when it gets done.

  • JT Cano

    I love the Counter Monkey series but this isn’t fucking watchable due to Spring board and its now “Youtube bug”! I can’t even go fucking full screen without it resetting. Just like in a fucking Youtube video. But at least there, it would only happen once. Here, it happens every fucking time you go full screen!!?!!??!!??!!?!?!??!?! Is it just me? Am I a fucking retard?! Am I doing something wrong? I fucking doubt it. Spring Board is a pile of shit. There is always at least one annoying as fuck bug. Whether it be if I pause it for to long the loading would reset or it would just stop loading and end. Now I can’t even go full screen! At least with the pausing bug, if my internet was nice that day, I didn’t need to pause it! Here I just can’t fucking watch it! What is it with people and conversing with youtube? I do not understand it? It is a horrible web site with the worst kind of people. The media player sucks and the majority of the videos are random stupid shit that only moronic ass-hat’s would be entertained by! “Thank you for jiggling keys in my face!” Yet we still always go back to it. Youtube the fucking Jesus of videos. No, try the fucking Hitler of videos. This is no offense to Spoony, but to Spring Board and Youtube. Fuck both of them. Spoony, keep doing what your doing but it would be cool to watch it.

    • doresh

      I have no issues with Youtube so far. Springboard’s weird, though (thanks to it not liking to be paused for too long).

    • Ivan Filipe Stefani

      Yes, it’s frustrating sometimes. Good thing about YouTube and Blip is that they already have specific clients for mobile. One thing that really pisses me off is that Blip and Springboard don’t even load on PS3 browser. I’m a web software developer, and if I tell the client “The browser of the PS3 sucks, you can’t use it, you can only run the system on a PC machine running IE”, I would lose the client. In the case, we are “clients” of Springboard or Blip. And they are not doing a great fucking job…

    • Ivan Filipe Stefani

      BTW, JT Can, is your real name Tony Montana? :)

  • San Shinobi

    Here’s to Steampunk 1877 ^_^

  • professorb

    Hah, Counter Monkey Punk. I see what you did there. Speaking of cyberpunk games though, one that seriously deserves a mention here, and also deserves a remake (or at least a port to XBox Live Arcade and PSN) would be Snatcher. It’ll never happen, but it’s something I always wished Konami would do.

    • Segatron

      Snatcher and Policenauts, with the original Digital comic styiling and none of the weird CG cutscenes from the Playstation version. That would be fine thing, indeed!

  • Timo Takalo

    Chainsaw arm? That brings back warm memories of Ghost Rider 2099.

  • Dane Corle

    Question, Spoony. Are you aware of Shadowrun Returns coming out this summer for PC?

  • Alexandria White

    That is always the problem with a lot of sci-fi/future ideas. Either the year comes and we haven’t achieved it or we achieved it years before because we used the sci-fi as a reference point.

  • Brennan DiMarzo

    We use a similar “Life Path” called Central Casting – Heroes of Legend, primarily for fantasy games though. We got some rather silly combinations using it, and they’re always enjoyable for the not-so-serious game.

  • Christer Jonsson

    Ha, the chainsaw arm was made by Husqvarna?An honest to god Swedish company, known among other things for high quality chainsaws? Who’d thunk it.

  • Colin Mengel

    Spooney, i almost never see you do video edits, so i assume you hate doing them for some reason, but in these counter monkey videos you often REALLY want to find something in a book somewhere, but you feel rushed because you know we’re just sitting here waiting for you to scan the book for the spot, so you end up just forgetting about it. That would be an idea time to just do a video edit. Don’t worry about sitting there spending 5 minutes looking for something, just cut out the 5 minutes of nothing.

  • Thiefofhearts

    Interestingly enough, Cyberpunk already beat out Shadowrun in the mid 90s for “Augmented Reality” in its spin off rpg CyberGeneration. It was a 7 year gap, and offered “V-Trodes”, devices you’d just put to your skin next to your temples, and would be able to see holograms, effects in clothing, signs and special effects as well as being able to connect to the net without a cyberdeck. There were glasses editions that didn’t offer audio on its own. CyGen was a fun game and it could be pitched as “Little Brother meets X-men meets Ghost in the Shell”.

  • Sylex Mauro da Silva

    When you spoke about the chainsaw arm a certain game came to my mind.
    Seriously. The book could see the future game of Sega!
    Also the song was stuck in my head too xD

  • Christian Karlsson

    I have music on chips for my portable audio devices, thou today we call them memory cards, flash cards or SD’s… Still, it’s a chip with music ;)

  • Steven Shaw

    Wonder if Spoony also knows there is a new Shadowrun game too? Revealed in the latest Game Informer. Only for PC too. Possibly Mac.

  • Amber

    I am also quite excited about this coming out as a Video game. When preorder starts, I’ll be there.

  • angela

    Cyberpunk has always been difficult for me to grasp. Usually it brings to mind men in bronze, metal tophats to me, but that’s just because my mind is a “little unwell”.

    But I do remember Shadowrun. My ex tried to get me to play a few rounds of it. I never was that good at it, though.

    • Strelnikov

      Think “Blade Runner” – grimy cities, people with computers grafted on to them, giant corporations run by assholes, a world where the real is expensive and the fake dirt-cheap.

  • Roberto Filho

    hey the you listen to the blind guardians that incledible

  • iEatWoofers

    Did they use real companies for everything? Husqvarna is a real company… they actually make gardening tools.

    • Strelnikov

      It grounds the game/movie in reality, which is why “Blade Runner” has logos for real companies.

  • josh mackenize

    has anyone else played the super NES version of shadowrun?

  • Yarrik

    Spoony! You’re awesome, and so is this video, but you’ve forced me to nitpick at you in ONE respect, and I’m sorry if someone already mentioned it, BUT…

    Shadowrun’s Priority System was phased out in 4E, not 3E. I love my 3E book, and it’s most definitely Priority, and I love it for that. Also for Karma.

  • Daniel Tilson

    A really good smartphone these days, without the contract discount will cost you more than a decent computer. 400 to 800 bucks.

  • Felipe Sarabia

    Basic fourth edition Shadowrun has a point buy, however the “Runner’s Companion” book had two other ways to create a character: Priority and Karma. Priority is the easier method for new player, at least in my opinion, however I prefer the finesse the other methods give you.
    Fifth edition uses the priority as the basic system again, the other two supposedly appearing in another book.

  • Green Dragon

    Oh, CP2020 did have other settings besides Night City. There were three for Nomads, Land of the Free box set, Home of the Brave box set, and Neo-Tribes (which is one of the best books for the setting). PacRim covers the far east and Australia. And there were two Europe books, EuroSource, and EuroSource Plus. I own the second, and it is a much more stylish version of CP. The European Administration isn’t the lawless chaos of America. So people don’t carry automatic rifles openly. Think Freejack. Remember the Solo protecting Rene Russo? Wearing a suit and carrying a monokatana, rather than looking like someone out of Mad Max. You can still use all the toys, but only in the “right way”. Not looking uncool is important.

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