When the long, long wait for the much-anticipated and frequently delayed RPG Cyberpunk 2077 is over, fans may end up bereft on some level, lacking something to look forward to in the indeterminate future. But luckily, the developers have something else in the pipeline – an anime adaptation, Cyberpunk: Edgerunners, is in development for Netflix and scheduled for a 2022 release.
The announcement stated that Edgerunners “tells a standalone, 10-episode story about a street kid trying to survive in a technology and body modification-obsessed city of the future. Having everything to lose, he chooses to stay alive by becoming an edgerunner—a mercenary outlaw also known as a cyberpunk.” The anime will take place in the same setting as its videogame basis, the futuristic and corrupt Night City, but focusing on an entirely different raft of characters.
CD Projekt Red are producing the series, with Studio Trigger providing the animation. Hiroyuki Imaishi, founder of Studio Trigger and known for his work on well-regarded animes like Gurren Lagann, Kill la Kill, and Promare, is attached as director.
Adam Badowski, the game director of Cyberpunk 2077 and head of studio at CD Projeckt Red, said “We are so excited to finally reveal that we are working on an anime in the Cyberpunk world…we’ve devoured just about all the cyberpunk fiction there is to watch, read, and play; it’s a genre that leaves so much room for creativity, and has had such a strong influence on us. Cyberpunk: Edgerunners is our love letter to cyberpunk as a whole, and to stories told in animated form.”
Masahiko Otsuka, the CEO of Studio Trigger, added: “We at TRIGGER are thrilled to work with CD Projekt Red to create a brand-new story set in the world of the highly anticipated Cyberpunk 2077. It’s a huge challenge to adapt this universe into an anime, but we are eager to face it head-on. I’ve always loved cyberpunk as a genre, but always found it difficult to create as an original work. This is why I’m very excited to be working with CD Projekt Red on this project. It won’t be easy to please both game and anime fans, but I love a challenge, and I’m looking forward to the production. We’ll do our best to meet and exceed expectations.”
CD Projekt Red has been working on this new series since 2018, but it was only officially announced as part of a recent Cyberpunk 2077 press release. Adapting video games for the screen has a distinctly spotty history, although there was a particularly promising detail in that the score will be created by Akira Yamaoka, best known for being composer of the Silent Hill game series. Silent Hill is iconic for a number of reasons, but the score was always recognised as a particularly strong aspect of the games, and possibly the only strong aspect of the film adaptations – suggesting that Cyberpunk: Edgerunners has a good idea of what can and can’t be effectively transferred from game to anime.
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