Cyberpunk 2077: Big City Dreams Review: Small Scale Tragedy

The feeling left over from Cyberpunk 2077: Big City Dreams recalls a Terry Pratchett quote: "Life was often very expensive; you could get death for free." Cyberpunk 2077: Big City Dreams is a brightly colored, dark, sad story about two citizens (Mirek and Tasha) who get in over their heads. What do you think happens to them?

Cyberpunk 2077: Big City Dreams Review: Small Scale Tragedy
The Cover to Cyberpunk 2077: Big City Dreams

The Cyberpunk 2077 branded setting lets its characters buy dreams via an in-universe technology called braindances, which writer Bartosz Sztybor uses judiciously. There's no awkward tap dancing around literary contrivances to get to a character's inner workings. Dreams come with the setting for free.

What're the dreams? Tasha wants to be Conan. Mirek other wants a calm, quiet life.

The dreams…errr…braindances are drawn by the now Eisner-nominated Filipe Andrade, and the normal setting is drawn by Alessio Fioriniello. Frustratingly, the credits page names two colorists (Krzysztof Ostrowski and Roman Titov) and doesn't mention who colored which artist, so assigning coloring praise is fruitless. Fiorniello's work below is expressive and unrefined, which suits Night City perfectly.

Cyberpunk 2077: Big City Dreams Review: Small Scale Tragedy
A couple of panels from Cyberpunk 2077: Big City Dreams

Letterer Aditya Bidikar does a fine job capturing the exuberance and reticence of the two main characters in their work. Maia Kenney's translation (credited as English Dialogue Adaptation) seems fine. The choice to use either Spanish or Italian for a too-friendly braindance seller was a nice touch.

Lord knows what's happening with the video game these comics tie in to, but Cyberpunk 2077: Big City Dreams stands on its own.

Two scavengers in Night City make a living for themselves stealing cyberware and indulging in parties and braindances. One seeks to become the most famous gangster in the city. The other longs for something more–meaning, belonging, warmth . . . As they chase their dreams, their paths begin to deviate. But one thing they can both agree on, in a place like Night City–you run, you fight, you change, or you die.

Cyberpunk 2077: Big City Dreams

Cyberpunk 2077: Big City Dreams Review: Small Scale Tragedy
Review by James Hepplewhite

6.5/10
The feeling left over from Cyberpunk 2077: Big City Dreams recalls a Terry Pratchett quote: “Life was often very expensive; you could get death for free.”
Credits

Writer
Bartosz Sztybor
Artist
Filipe Andrade
Artist
Alessio Fioriniello
Colorist
Krzysztof Ostrowski
Colorist
Roman Titov
Letterer
Aditya Bidikar
English Dialogue Adaptation
Maia Kenney

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About James Hepplewhite

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