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Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
$29.99 $10.00
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Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
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Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Edward K. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/27/2021 18:01:02

Ring Side Report-RPG Review of Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart

Originally posted at, a new idea every day!

Product- Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart System- Cyberpunk Red Producer- R. Talsorian Games Inc. Price- $10.00 here TL; DR- Good appetizer to the whole system! 90%

Basics-Choombatta, it’s time to make some EB! Cyberpunk Red is the latest version of the popular Cyberpunk series, taking place decades after the last edition. Players try to survive in Night City as gangs, governments, and corporations all fight for dominance. What will you do in the dark to make money? Let’s do a breakdown

basics-This is a 1d10 based system. You roll a d10, add an attribute, and a skill and you are done. If that number is better than the difficulty value (DV) or higher then your opponent, you win. That’s it. Hacking, fighting, seducing, it's all 1d10+stat+skill. Slick and simple.

combat-Combat is the same as above with 1d10 + stat for initiative and each round you get a move and an action. Attacking vs defending is again 1d10+stat+skill vs 1d10+stat+skill. You will roll each time for damage and attack. You crit on a 10 and roll another 1d10 to get bonuses to hit. Beat the defender and do damage based on melee, ranged, or how much chrome cyberware you are sporting. Armor protects you but each time you take damage over its protection value, it degrades. When you take enough punishment, you gain penalties to all your rolls. Eventually you get knocked out and you need help ASAP or you die quick! Healing is slow as this is a realistic game where bullets hurt!

hacking- Hacking uses the same basics as above except your net actions are accelerated as you get multiple actions in a round if you have better gear. You also hack in/jack in physically and have to stay close unless you get dumped out and bad things happen. Once you are in, basically all computers operate like buildings with elevators. You investigate a floor and see what’s there. Black ICE and other hackers defend places, so keep your wits about you as you dig for pay data and machine controls to keep yourself alive and paid!

Ok, that's the basics of the box. Now for my thoughts.

Mechanics or Crunch- Cyberpunk is a solid game that is realistic, but maybe a bit slow. The base mechanic of roll dice, add, and done is good, but this is a combat heavy game. I like the speed that regular rolls have, but I feel that rolling to dodge slows down games like this. D & D is as heavy a combat game, but I feel that the static defence value helps with that speed. Otherwise, it's a pretty slick system where you do move quickly getting past obstacles and negotiating the dark underbelly of Night City. 4.5/5

Theme or Fluff- This book does a solid job explaining the world, but I would like a bit more for the included adventure. Night City and the world it is in feels real. You can tell this was written long ago in the long ago past of 1988 (god I am getting old!) as it has the feel of what they thought the future would be back then. The world is well built and I’m glad to see a future where Africa doesn’t take the brunt of the world going to hell. My one minor concern is the adventure that is included. I want a run where I can score money and fame. This one is more an Assault on Precinct 13. Not bad, but I wanted something else. Overall, this box portrays a solid world with only a few issues. 4.5/5

Execution- PDF? YEP! Hyperlinked? Yes! Starting strong! Overall, the layout is good, but I have some issues as some small things are left out or included in areas away from the revelivent text, like how armor degrades. It’s here but it's mentioned in one place and fully explored later. It is a quick, fun read,, but the jumpstart format always leaves a few things on the cutting room floor that are needed. I do enjoy the maps and other pieces, and the book flows well. This is a decently executed book that only has a few minor issues. 4.5/5

Summary-Overall, this is a solid introduction to the world of Cyberpunk. I am left wanting more, but I don’t hate what’s here. I want more adventures and such. The intro one is good, but not the adventure I wanted. The world is well built, and the crunch is solidly designed. I have small issues with game speed and book odds and ends, but those are minor compared to everything else. This was like a solid taster to a good meal. I want more, and I look forward to the whole meal. I like Cyberpunk, and I can’t wait to play and see some more Cyberpunk Red! 90%

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by drew l. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/21/2020 15:07:18

I really want to love this game. I love the genre, I love the setting. I'm excited for the full version of the game.

As a starter set this product has many good qualities, but it is also lacking in many areas. I ran my first session last night, and we had a blast, but I had to do a lot of house ruling to make up for the lack of detail in the rules of the Jumpstart Kit.

Where to start...

Firstly the writing. It is written in a very conversational tone, which makes for enjoyable casual reading, but the downside is that it is not as useful as a rules reference. Sometimes important rules are kind of tucked away in the conversational sentences.

The rules themselves are a bit all over the place and don't always make sense for the world. For example, a "slice and dice", which is described as a highly dangerous monofiliment whip, but it only does 2d6 damage. Most edgerunners are walking around with at least 11 points of armour (damage reduction), so it wouldn't even hurt a typical character. Furthermore, although they are described as being easily able to slice through any organic material, there's nothing mechanically that gives them any kind of special armour penetration to match the fluff. Firearm damage is also highly variable, and there are no pages with costs or ammo counts or anything like that in the book. There is a range chart, and damage values for different types of guns but that's it. There are rules for burst fire, but no rules for full automatic fire. For some reason a character can attack in melee twice as an action but can only shoot once. I'm not sure why attacking with a melee weapon is so much easier than shooting someone with a firearm?

Armour is quite powerful, and for some reason it is assumed that armour covers your entire body, including your head even if you are just wearing an armoured jacket. A light armoured jacket has a 11 stopping power, and a heavy pistol does 3d6 damage, so a character with a light armour jacket will only rarely be injured by a heavy pistol. A heavy armour jacket has 15 stopping power, so even an assualt rifle, which does 5d6 damage won't hurt that much. One thing I do like is that if the armour does take damage it degrades by a point, so over time it gets weaker and eventually the character will take damage and armour will need to be repaired or replaced.

I should also mention that there are no prices to be found for ANY gear in this book. The cyberware selection is highly limited.

There are also no character creation rules or character advancement rules, so you pretty much are limited to using the pregens, which aren't really even complete because only the special ability of the Netrunner is detailed.

When I ran my game last night, I found myself winging it to make up prices for equipment. I created some house rules for armour pentration, so that some weapons that would otherwise be useless could actually be cool. I also house ruled that armour would only protect the locations it would actually cover (a crazy idea), and I added in a hit location table. All in all, I think these house rules made the game a lot more playable and we had a lot of fun, but that was more a testament to my 30+ years of experience as a GM and having good players than to the rules.

In conclusion, I think this game has a lot of potential, and I hope that the final game delivers on that potential, but I don't think the Jumpstart Kit is really that well done. It is a tease, and and as a GM I found it frustrating to work with because there is so much missing.

[2 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Ivan R. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/13/2020 16:09:52

I think this is my favorite trad game. I love the setting and the lore presented and it was clear for a table who had never played an RPG. I'm much more of the GMless or PbtA-like games but I'll gladly play and GM Cyberpunk Red when it finally releases

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Ryan S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/05/2020 22:01:12

I played the previous version of Cyberpunk, and I am a fan. This version is the "Jump Start" version has limited version of the rules (hence the Jump Start), so you cannot make a character. That disapointed me more than anything; in most quick start version of games they give you more options and give you a little insight into how characters are made. I am assuming it is similar to the previous version, but I don't have any idea how to make a character based on this version, which is less than a lot of free versions in other game systems; kind of stingy.

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the cut outs and maps included in this edition. It is great for online games or even games at the table. It has some maps appropriate to the setting at included, but it doesn't have anwhere to go from there. It seems a bit pricy for what it is (maybe if you had two more scenarios included with some character advancement or gear offered it would be worth it?), but the maps and tokens definately add to the value.

[3 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Jason S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/12/2020 19:24:02

I am really sad having to give this product 2 stars. I bought it several months ago, and was super excited to run it for my group in a one shot adventure. Now, don't get me wrong, the artwork is absolutely amazing, the setting is great, the rules are easy enough to understand, and combat can flow quite easily.

It is true though, that the JumpStart Kit does not hold your hand, or offer much replayability, but I kind of saw this as a sort of "Early Access" play test. Now, I ran this for my group last night, and we quickly realized a few things that felt off about the product. I will cover each area seperately.

Combat: 3 round bursts are broken. Simple as that. We don't know for certain in this kit how much ammo a gun holds, but even if we gave real world averages, a three round burst has the potential of murdering an average character in 1 turn, and that wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing, but it is TOO EASY TO HIT WITH. At short range with an assault rifle, difficulty 12 to hit with a three round burst. For each +1 over 12, an extra bullet hits. My goon rolls... 15. 15 is not really a hard roll, so all 3 bullets connect and almost instantly murder the player character. I feel that if that was to become more balanced, it needs to either require a higher incriment between each bullet that hits, or at least just make the 3 round burst difficulties require the same difficulties as the single shot ranges, but at a +X difficulty. Also, punching people in the face apparently is far more effective then stabbing them with a knife, as long as you are built like a refrigerator. If I have to choose between 1d6 damage (knife) and 4d6 damage (fist), why would I ever stab? Shouldn't your melee weapons get some sort of damage bonus according to your Body maybe? Maybe that is just me, but it feels unbalanced.

The Characters: Pregenerated characters. Ok, I like the fact that they added a little wiggle room to see what stats you end up with, but the stats are super varied in usefulness, where some rows are just simply worse then others, making you feel super ripped off if that d6 roll gives you the worst row (which 2 of my players got). I did like the extra flavor of the lifepath system (I bought Cyberpunk 2020 to see how it was in that edition, and am super enthusiastic about how that was done too. This one version seems a little more streamlined, but thats ok, its also just a starter kit). Now lets talk about balance. My Netrunner Player felt absolutely useless in the scenario. They were expecting to be able to access and hack alot more different things, what was offered. It seems there arent enough things that have nodes, and having to get so close to hack becomes a detriment. Now I know they changed it so that Netrunners become a real member of a team, and have to go WITH a group to get to a node to make their hacks now, but the pregenerated character does not have the survivability to do so. With only a bare minimum to actually do with her netrunning skills, the Netrunner ended up hiding when bullets started flying, because they already took one wound earlier, and could not risk getting murdered in a straight up fight while being useless. I feel this could be fixed by maybe adding smaller nodes for smaller things that could be hacked, and maybe hacked a slightly bigger distance. Like say "Oh look, auto turrets! Sure each has a node, and you could try to hack one at 20 squares and take over and try ot use it to help the group!". I dunno, minor things, maybe with higher difficulty because of range? I understand the Netrunner had to change so that we didn't send the rest of the group home the moment they jacked into the net, but now it's like sending the Netrunner home whenever the group wants to get serious.


The Scenario: Ok, let's talk about the scenario, shall we? I am really on the fence about it being the best "starting point" for any Cyberpunk game. I like the idea of a kind of house warming party and getting the characters to know eachother and neighbors, as it is a different way of groups meeting that are less cliché? But you are giving starter characters alot of power and riches that they normally wouldn't have when one of them suddenly inherits an entire apartment building that adds to their income. Ok the idea of a Corp wanting to take the place and use for a comm tower, also not too bad. The execution of this scenario? More then a little sloppy. After introducing about 8 to 9 NPCS that are at least a little more memorable then the walking faceless meat zombies that are the rest of the buildings tennants, we are told by the scenario about how someone might notice the car outside and the suspicious behavior. Fine. Once that is investigated, the players get information or not, fine. When they get back, and things get really dangerous? Thats when things fall apart. You have several different possible approaches from the CORP at your disposal, and all of them seem silly when you look at what is REALLY in that building. I feel a Corp would do their homework better if they found out that a building has potentially 2 Solos (one PC and one NPC, if a player chose a Solo), a Rockerboy, a Nomad, a Netrunner... you get the drift, the player characters alone would get them to think "we should re-evaluate this", but now the NPCs add an entire BOOSTER GANG to the mix that could defend the building (The Handersons) along with the previously mentioned NPC Solo, and possibly even the Local Fixer getting involved if he is nearby. Apparently, every single NPC in this scenario will take up arms when the building is attacked, making the whole 5 strike force members that the scenario offers to throw against the building feel silly and lackluster. Sure, the scenario offers to throw more then one possible outcome at them... what happens then? An all out royal smackdown of dicerolling that would get a potentially new group and GM absolutely frustrated, for the amount of NPCs needing to be run in combat, that are probably doing most of the potential heavy lifting. All the while, the Netrunner only has something to do if you choose ONE of the outcomes. Considering my Netrunner almost got murdered by going out onto the street and trying to see what those people were up to, I kind of went with another outcome, because with them down to almost half their health, if they had to go up against another NPC Netrunner that was using the SAME STATS AS THE PREGENERATED NET RUNNER PC, then they would have been obliterated. With absolutely NOTHING else for a Netrunner to do in the building while her allies are having a grindfest, they end up just sitting there, possibly flickering lights on and off.... at best. I think that GMs need to adapt the scenario ALOT in order for it to be more fun for a group. Maybe install another level or two into the Net with "Cameras" or "Door Locks" or something... ANYTHING that could make the Netrunner actually feel like they could contribute to the session more then turning sprinklers on and off.


End Result: Maybe fans of Cyberpunk will be better at running this then me. Maybe I failed as a GM. Maybe I am not familiar enough with the setting, or the rules. But, look at it this way. If a GM new to the setting has all of these concerns, it might be concerns that other new players or GMs have. I know this is supposed to be a gritty world that tosses characters into a constant meat grinder... but if that is the case, we should make sure they are somewhat equiped for it, no? As the system is right now, I sadly cannot quite recommend it. I feel some of the combat system, and the "classes" need some work, in specific, the Netrunner.

I wrote this review with a heavy heart, because I really wanted to love this game. I mean the rules are far more refined (in my opinion) then Shadowrun.... now if we could fix some ballance issues, I am sure I could potentially LOVE this game.

[2 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Roger L. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 02/19/2020 01:30:11

Cyberpunk-Fans weltweit erwarten sehnlich das Release von Cyberpunk 2077. Der Rollenspiel-Shooter schreibt die Geschichte des Rollenspiel-Klassikers Cyberpunk 2020 fort, spielt allerdings satte 57 Jahre später. Mit Cyberpunk Red schlägt R. Talsorian die Brücke zwischen dem alten Cyberpunk-Lore und dem kommenden Videospiel und versucht sich zugleich an einem neuen, zeitgemäßen Cyberpunk-Regelwerk.

Mit Cyberpunk Red unternimmt R. Talsorian Games den Versuch, dem 90er-Jahre-System neues Leben einzuhauchen und zugleich sein Lore weiterzuentwickeln – denn immerhin klafft zwischen Cyberpunk 2020, dessen Metaplot im Jahr 2022 endete, und Cyberpunk 2077 eine Story-Lücke von rund 55 Jahren. Cyberpunk RED, dessen Handlung im Jahr 2045 angesiedelt ist, füllt diese Lücke zumindest teilweise und knüpft dabei unmittelbar da an, wo Cyberpunk 2020 endete. Die Spin-Offs CyberGeneration und Cyberpunk V3.0 bleiben alternative Settings ohne Einfluss auf den Kanon.

Die Spielwelt Das Jahr 2045: Der Vierte Konzernkrieg ist vorbei. Ein Vierteljahrhundert, nachdem die Megakonzerne Arasaka und Militech in Firestorm, der Abschlusskampagne zu Cyberpunk 2020, den Globus verwüstet haben, kehrt die Welt immer noch die Scherben zusammen.

Cyberpunk trifft Postapokalypse Auf 28 Seiten beschreibt das Worldbook des Jumpstart Kits in groben Zügen die Spielwelt und Cyberpunks alternative Geschichtsschreibung von 1990 bis 2045. Die Entwicklungen seit dem Konzernkrieg stehen dabei im Mittelpunkt. Auch der Name der Nachkriegs-Ära, der „Time of the Red“, und sogar der Titel Cyberpunk Red führt sich darauf zurück: Eine taktische Atombombe hat 2022 die Innenstadt der ikonischen Cyberpunk-Modellmetropole Night City (vergleichbar etwa mit Seattle im Shadowrun-Universum) dem Erdboden gleichgemacht. Die dabei in die Atmosphäre geschleuderten Partikel sorgen noch 2045 für intensiv rote Sonnenauf- und Untergänge.

Night City ist 2045 übrigens weitgehend wiederaufgebaut, hat mit der Stadt von damals aber nur noch entfernte Ähnlichkeit. Diese Metamorphose ist symptomatisch für die gesamte Welt von Cyberpunk Red, das beim klassischen Cyberpunk-Setting einen Gang herunterschaltet und stattdessen eine ordentliche Portion Wildwest-Flair und Postapokalypse untermischt.

Infolge des Konzernkriegs steht die globalisierte Welt am Abgrund. Internationale Warenströme sind versiegt und das weltumspannende NET wurde von einem Supervirus nahezu vollständig und irreparabel zerstört. Die Megakonzerne sind entweder untergegangen oder haben sich in etliche national operierende „Corpos“ aufgespalten – ohne quasi-staatliche Privilegien, Privatarmeen und uneinnehmbare Firmen-Festungen. Auch viele Staaten sind kollabiert, darunter die USA, deren mehr oder weniger heil gebliebene Überreste an der Ostküste, nun faktisch eine Militärdiktatur, die Kontrolle über den gesetzlosen „wilden Westen“ weitgehend verloren haben.

Power to the Punks Die Intention dahinter ist deutlich und wurde von Mike Pondsmith so auch formuliert: Cyberpunk Red soll klarere Verhältnisse und einen übersichtlicheren Rahmen schaffen. Dabei soll es eine Spielwelt bieten, die mehr Fokus auf lokale Ereignisse und Akteure legt und mehr Freiräume für die eigentlichen Stars des Systems schafft: Die „Edgerunner“ und Cyberpunks, Söldner und Revolverhelden, Nomaden, Rockerboys und Guerilla-Reporter, kurzum die ikonischen Rebellentypen des Cyberpunk-Genres. Die „Time of the Red“ schafft für diese Untergrund-Antihelden deutlich mehr Freiheiten, mehr Spielräume, mehr jagen und weniger gejagt werden.

Dem Durchschnitts-Bürger geht es angesichts des allgemeinen Zerfalls sogar besser als in den 20er-Jahren, dank im Dachgarten gezogenem Gemüse, geklauten Solarkollektoren und irgendwo geplündertem Vorkriegs-Tech. Moderne Kommunikationsgeräte, Waffen, Munition, Cybertech und Fahrzeuge gibt es aber nach wie vor – auf der Straße oder dem Schwarzmarkt, denn reguläre Geschäfte kennt die „Time of the Red“ praktisch nicht mehr.

Wie genau die Spielwelt den Spagat zwischen Untergang und Fortschritt schafft, bleibt unkonkret. Die USA und die restliche Welt werden jeweils nur auf etwas mehr als einer Seite in groben Zügen beschrieben, dazu kommen noch ein paar Seiten Weltgeschichte und ein wenig Fluff, der das Alltagsleben im Jahr 2045 grob umreißt. Vermutlich wird man, um die „Time of the Red“ wirklich verstehen zu können, auf das Grundregelwerk warten müssen.

Die Regeln Wie an mehreren Stellen in den Büchern betont wird, ist das Jumpstart Kit gewissermaßen eine Demo für das kommende Grundregelwerk, vereinfacht und gekürzt, um leichter in das System einsteigen zu können. Allerdings entsteht beim Lesen schnell die Frage, wie hilfreich das Jumpstart Kit für den Einstieg ins eigentliche Cyberpunk Red sein wird, denn an einigen Stellen erwecken Formulierungen den Eindruck, dass bestimmte Regeln womöglich im Grundregelwerk anders funktionieren werden. Es wird aber nicht wirklich transparent gemacht, welche Regeln das sind und wie weitreichend die möglichen Abweichungen sind.

Das Interlock-System Cyberpunk Red verwendet, wie schon Cyberpunk 2020 und auch das The Witcher TRPG, das Interlock-System, das allerdings grundlegend überarbeitet, angepasst und gestrafft wurde. Charaktere basieren auf neun Attributen und einer Reihe von Skills, jeweils mit einem Wert zwischen 0 und 10. Bei Proben werden Attribut und zugehöriger Skill summiert, ein W10 addiert und die Summe mit einem festgelegten Zielwert verglichen. In Konfliktsituationen wird stattdessen direkt vergleichend gewürfelt, der höhere Wurf setzt sich durch.

Das Jumpstart Kit listet insgesamt 22 Skills auf, das Grundregelwerk wird aber deutlich mehr Skills enthalten. Alle Charaktere erhalten bei der Erschaffung Gratis-Ränge in verschiedenen Skills, beispielsweise in „Wahrnehmung“, „Allgemeinbildung“, „Athletik“ und „Waffenloser Kampf“. Für das Jumpstart Kit spielt das aber eigentlich keine Rolle, denn es gibt keine Regeln zur Charaktererschaffung.


Cyberpunk Red behält das Klassensystem von Cyberpunk 2020 bei und umfasst neun Charakterklassen, von denen aber nur sechs im Jumpstart Kit spielbar sind: Rockerboy (Musiker und andere Entertainer), Solo (Söldner, Profikiller und andere Kämpfer), Tech (Mechaniker, Bastler und Mediziner), Nomad (Profi-Fahrer und Straßenkrieger à la Mad Max), Fixer (Info-Broker, Hehler und Schmuggler) und Netrunner (Hacker). Im Grundregelwerk wird jede Klasse einen exklusiven Spezial-Skill haben, diese kommen im Jumpstart Kit aber nicht zum Einsatz – mit Ausnahme des Netrunners, dessen Klassenskill ihm das Hacken überhaupt erst ermöglicht.

Zu jeder Charakterklasse enthält das Jumpstart Kit einen fertig ausgearbeiteten Archetypen. Skills, Ausrüstung und Cyberware stehen fest, Einfluss nehmen kann der Spieler auf die Attribute und auf die Persönlichkeit und Vita seines Charakters. Jeder Charakterbogen kommt mit sechs unterschiedlichen Attributs-Blöcken, der Spieler kann sich einen Block aussuchen oder auswürfeln.

Charakterbogen Der vorgefertigte Charakterbogen des Solo-Archetypen mit verschiedenen Attributs-Blöcken und freien Feldern für den Charakterhintergrund.

Mit dem „Lifepath“-Modul kann sich der Spieler außerdem eine Persönlichkeit und eine Lebensgeschichte für seinen Charakter entweder aussuchen oder erwürfeln. Spieltechnische Auswirkungen hat das Modul nicht.

Die Kampfregeln Für Kämpfe verwendet Cyberpunk Red eine weiterentwickelte und deutlich abgespeckte Version des Kampfsystems von Cyberpunk 2020. Vor allem die Regeln zu Automatikfeuer wurden stark vereinfacht und entschärft – pro Angriff treffen in Cyberpunk Red maximal eine Handvoll Kugeln das Ziel. Angriffe laufen ab wie alle anderen Skill-Proben auch der Zielwert von der verwendeten Waffe und der Entfernung zum Ziel ab. Nur Charaktere mit sehr hohem Reflex-Attribut können im Fernkampf aktiv ausweichen, dann wird aus dem Angriffswurf eine vergleichende Probe. Im Nahkampf wird grundsätzlich vergleichend gewürfelt.

CyborgEs gibt zwei Trefferzonen: Kopf und Körper. Kopftreffer sind schwieriger, richten aber mehr Schaden an. Beide Trefferzonen können individuell gepanzert werden. Die Panzerung zählt als passiver Bonus und wird vom erlittenen Waffenschaden abgezogen. Überzähliger Schaden reduziert dann die Lebenspunkte des Charakters. Charaktere, deren Lebenspunkte auf 0 sinken, sterben früher oder später, wenn sie keine Erste Hilfe erhalten.

Die Waffen werden in Klassen eingeteilt, die sich in Schaden, Reichweite und dem Feuermodus unterscheiden. Waffen selbst bleiben abstrakte Platzhalter; spezifische Modelle mit Bild oder Beschreibung stehen nicht zur Wahl.

Cyberware Die vorgefertigten Charaktere (und auch verschiedene NSC) verfügen jeweils über eine Handvoll Cyberware-Implantate, die jeweils bestimmte spieltechnische Boni liefern oder als Waffe eingesetzt werden können. Zu jedem Implantat gibt es eine knappe Beschreibung.

Diese Implantate sind festgelegt: Sich weiter vercybern zu lassen ist im Einsteiger-Regelwerk keine Option.

Netrunning Das weltweite NET ist in der „Time of the Red“ ebenso Geschichte wie der Cyberspace, in dem man gedankenschnell und körperlos herumfliegen konnte. Öffentliche Netzwerke sind beschränkt auf regionale Informationsplattformen auf dem technischen Niveau des heutigen Internets. Das „echte“ NET, in das sich Netrunner mental einstöpseln können, existiert nur noch in Form lokaler Netzwerke.

Wortwörtlich einstöpseln muss sich aber niemand mehr, denn das neue NET ist eine kabellose Augmented-Reality-Umgebung, die der Netrunner durch eine Datenbrille sieht. Eine WiFi-Welt analog zu Shadowrun, in der sich nahezu alles hacken lässt, ist das kabellose NET aber nicht; Hacking bleibt auf Systeme wie Firmennetzwerke beschränkt. Zugangspunkte zu solchen Systemen haben in der Regel eine Reichweite von lediglich sechs Metern. Für die Netrunner heißt das: Keine Hacks mehr vom heimischen Sofa aus, sondern raus an die Front.

Hacken funktioniert nach dem „Fahrstuhl“-System: Computersysteme staffeln sich in übereinander liegende Level, die der Netrunner der Reihe nach von oben nach unten erkundet. Auf jedem Level können dann Dateien und der Zugriff auf Sicherheitssysteme und Ähnliches liegen, aber auch Passwortsperren oder „Black ICE“ (aggressive und potentiell tödliche Verteidigungsprogramme).

Abenteuer Das Jumpstart Kit enthält ein längeres, viereinhalbseitiges Abenteuerszenario sowie als Zugabe drei kürzere Szenarien auf jeweils etwa einer Seite zuzüglich Fluff-Text, die der SL als Grundlage für weitere Abenteuer verwenden kann. R. Talsorian verspricht vorgefertigte Abenteuer, die sich „out of the box“ spielen lassen. Falls man darunter Abenteuer versteht, die so umfassend ausgearbeitet und durchstrukturiert sind, dass sie ohne nennenswerte Vorbereitung und zusätzliche Ausgestaltung spielbar sind, dann ist das eindeutig nicht der Fall. Fehlende Details und Hintergrundinformationen fordern dem Spielleiter viel Improvisationstalent und/oder gründliche Vorarbeit ab – das genaue Gegenteil von „out of the box“. Dass der eigentliche Plot auf Schienen läuft und oft Handlungen der Spieler voraussetzt oder gleich vorwegnimmt, macht es für einen unerfahrenen Spielleiter nicht leichter.

Eins haben die Szenarien im Jumpstart Kit alle gemein: Es sind Schießbuden. Eigentlich in jedem Fall läuft nach kurzer, linearer Einleitung die Lösung auf einen oder mehrere Kämpfe hinaus. Andere Optionen werden oft gar nicht erst erwähnt oder sogar durch das festgeschriebene Verhalten der NSC aktiv ausgeschlossen. Unter diesem Licht betrachtet ist es dann auch nicht verwunderlich, dass ausnahmslos alle vorgefertigten Charaktere vom Rockerboy bis zum Tech schwer bewaffnet und von Kopf bis Fuß solide gepanzert sind.

Erscheinungsbild Umfang Eine Anmerkung vorweg: Die Druckversion des Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit präsentiert sich als Box mit Softcover-Heften, Broschüren und losen Blättern. In der digitalen Version sind die einzelnen Dokumente stattdessen jeweils als separate PDFs enthalten. Da wir für diese Rezension nur die digitale Version vorliegen hatten, können wir zur Qualität der gedruckten Produkte keine Aussagen treffen.

Das Jumpstart Kit umfasst zwei Bücher: Das Worldbook liefert auf 53 Seiten einen Überblick über die Hintergrundwelt von Cyberpunk Red, die Geschichte, ein Profil der Stadt Night City sowie Tipps zum Spielleiten. Außerdem sind hier das Start-Abenteuer und die weiteren Szenarien enthalten. Das 45-Seitige Rulebook enthält die Spielregeln inklusive Kampf- und Netrunning-System sowie einige weitere Erklärungen zur Cyberpunk-Spielwelt. Hinzu kommen die sechs vorgefertigten Charaktere, jeweils mit einer Seite Fluff-Text und Bild und einer Seite Charakterbogen, ein doppelseitiges Handout mit Regel-Kurzübersicht für Spieler und ein vierseitiges Heft für den SL mit Regelübersicht und anderen hilfreichen Tabellen. Alle Dokumente kommen in DIN A4; lediglich das Kartenpaket, mit dem das das Paket abgerundet wird, kommt im A3-Format und enthält vier Bodenpläne: eine generische Straßenecke, ein Stück staubiger Highway, eine Bar und ein Bürogebäude.


Das gesamte Jumpstart Kit präsentiert sich in Farbe. Das Layout ist klar und nüchtern, aber wenig aufregend. Rot und weiß dominieren das Seitenbild mit hin und wieder eingestreuten Info-Kästen, Zitaten (von denen so einige dem Cyberpunk 2020-Grundregelwerk entnommen sind) oder Illustrationen. Nennenswerte Layout-Schnitzer sind nicht aufgefallen, wohl aber einige Wort-Doppelungen oder Tippfehler.

Die Bebilderung wirkt durch die Bank solide, die Bildqualität ist gut. Die Illustrationen stammen von verschiedenen Künstlern mit ganz unterschiedlichen Stilen, die gezeigten Motive erinnern an Vorlagen von Ghost in the Shell über Elysium und Blade Runner bis hin zu Mad Max.

Sowohl Worldbook als auch Rulebook haben ein Inhaltsverzeichnis, aber keinen Index. Die Regel-Tabellen der Übersichts-Handouts enthalten keine Seitenverweise zum Regelbuch, was dem schnellen Nachschlagen am Spieltisch sicher gutgetan hätte.

Bonus/Downloadcontent Kürzlich ist auf R. Talsorians Homepage das Download-Kurzabenteuer Red Chrome Cargo für das Jumpstart Kit erschienen. Außerdem gibt es auf der Homepage die Developer‘s Logs mit Einblicken in die Entwicklung von Cyberpunk und den Q&A-Podcast Listen Up!, in dem Mike und Cody Pondsmith unter anderem über Fragen zu Cyberpunk Red diskutieren.

Fazit Das Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit ist eine kostenpflichtige Demo – nicht mehr, nicht weniger. Es liefert in aller Kürze einen Einblick in die Spielregeln, die das kommende Grundregelwerk enthalten wird, macht aber keinen Hehl daraus, dass der Großteil eben erst mit diesem Buch erscheinen wird. Das reduzierte Interlock-System ist unkompliziert und dürfte auch für absolute Einsteiger leicht zu erlernen sein. Der Überblick über die Spielwelt hingegen fällt ziemlich grob aus, gerade bei Einsteigern ohne Cyberpunk-Vorerfahrung dürften viele Fragen offen bleiben.

Die im Worldbook enthaltenen Abenteuer-Szenarien machen einen durchaus spielbaren Eindruck, sind aber sehr auf Kampf zugespitzt und nur rudimentär ausgearbeitet – Einsteigerrunden dürften hier schnell überfordert sein. Die enthaltenen Regeln ermöglichen durchaus, auch eigene Szenarien zu spielen, das Regelwerk schränkt die Möglichkeiten aber deutlich ein. Eine längere Kampagne abwechslungsreich zu gestalten dürfte deshalb schwierig werden, auch mangels Ausbau- und Entwicklungsmöglichkeiten für die Charaktere.

Für die ersten Schritte und eine grobe Orientierung in der neuen „Time of the Red“ und der nächsten Edition des Cyberpunk-Rollenspiels ist das Jumpstart Kit aber allemal geeignet und es macht neugierig auf das kommende Grundregelwerk. Ein Spielwert über einige Spielabende hinaus ist aber eher nicht in Sicht, zumal die Box mit dem Erscheinen des Grundregelwerks weitgehend obsolet werden dürfte. Den Preis von knapp 30 US-Dollar erscheint daran gemessen ziemlich hoch. Bei der PDF-Version, die es auf unabsehbare Zeit für knapp 10 US-Dollar gibt, stimmt das Preis-Leistungs-Verhältnis schon eher.

Die Endwertung fällt deshalb alles in allem durchwachsen aus. Das Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit ist vor allem ein Produkt für alte Cyberpunk-Fans, die wissen wollen, wie die Geschichte weitergeht, und für alle, die sich mental schon mal auf Cyberpunk 2077 einstimmen und mehr über R. Talsorians Cyberpunk-Welt erfahren wollen. Für Einsteiger, die einfach neugierig auf das Cyberpunk-Genre insgesamt sind, ist das Jumpstart Kit definitiv eine Option, aber nicht unbedingt der Geheimtipp des Jahres.

[3 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 02/03/2020 12:04:29

An review

This review is based primarily on the massive boxed set of the Cyberpunk RED jumpstart kit; I have also consulted the electronic version; this review was moved up in my reviewing queue due to me receiving a physical copy of the boxed set for the purpose of a fair and unbiased review.

Okay, that out of the way, let us start!

In the archive of the electronic version, there is a two-page standee-pdf for paper minis…and much to my pleasant surprise, the R. Talsorian crew has not simply put a sheet of paper in the box – instead, the standees in the box are part of a THICK, sturdy cardboard. A single little press made them seamlessly pop out of it. Kudos for going the extra mile with a material that actually withstands the rigors of play. Moreover, 12 plastic feet for the standees are included –assembling of the paper-minis was easy-peasy: Put the standee in the foot, done.

It should also be noted that the physical boxed set includes two custom d10s, and four custom d6s, using the Cyberpunk RED icon as the maximum number, with each number sporting red circuitry. The dice are black with red numbers, and unlike many comparable dice, the red circuitry elements so far haven’t worn off, so once again, the R. Talsorian crew did not cut corners here. Kudos.

Now, one glimpse at the archive will net you a 12-page pdf of pregens: The front side of these sports a high-quality artwork alongside a background story, with the fully filled-out stats on the back in an already ready-to-play filled out sheet. In the physical box, these pregens are printed on glossy, high-quality paper – thicker, and obviously made to be handed out and used. Speaking of which: The boxed set also includes 4 full-color maps, all of which come with grids and plenty of details. One map depicts a street-corner, another a dust-choked street, the third an apartment complex, and the fourth a bar. In their physical iterations, these are also glossy paper, with each map the size of 2 regular pages, so tabloid format.

Speaking of which: The box contains a EZ Reference tabloid – 4 pages. 2 pages are the basic rules, 1 page is all about the netrunning rules, and the final page contains 3 NPC stats. In the electronic iteration, two versions are provided: A 4-page iteration for regular printers, and a 2-page version for printers capable of printing tabloid-size. Yep, all rules fit on two pages. (And in case you were wondering, this booklet is actually enough to run the game if you’ve understood it once. Two pages. That’s super-promising for the final game.

Final game? Yeah, this is not a full-blown iteration of Cyberpunk RED; instead, this is a starter kit, and I’ll rate it as such – much like e.g. Pathfinder’s Beginner’s Box or the LITE-version of the Witcher RPG, this box is all about providing the tools you require to dive into the game in every way. However, this book does not provide the tools for you to make your own, fully-realized characters. It is a starter’s kit. That being said, as far as I could tell, this is not, and that is important, a dumbed-down version of the game – which is a good thing. I am not a fan of learning a dumbed-down version of a game, only to have to unlearn it later, so kudos for this decision.

Okay, this out of the way, the system employed is an evolution of the Interlock system, and veterans of Cyberpunk should have an easy time getting into the game’s rules. The rules book included in this set clocks in at 43 pages (already minus cover, editorial, etc.), and in the physical iteration, is a nice, perfect-bound softcover with glossy, thick paper. But didn’t I say that the rules fit on 2 pages? Yeah, well, the rule book? It’s not just dry rules – it is not only a brief introduction of roleplaying games, it also explains the crucial aesthetics of cyberpunk. This is in so far important, as Cyberpunk 2020 was firmly routed in the 80s and their vision of the future; it was a vocalization of hopes and fears of that age…and now that we have arrived in 2020, rehashing these would have, at best, resulted in feeling, well…quaint.

This game does not do “quaint.” The game moves the timeline ahead to 2045, after the fourth corporate war, which saw a small tactical nuke go off in the center of Night City at its conclusion. The power-dynamics of the world have been thoroughly shaken by this catastrophe, and while some might assume a somewhat post-apocalyptic tint, I’d actually not subscribe to that. First of all, tech and construction can negate radiation; the detonation has catapulted dust into the air, tinting dawn and dusk in crimson shades. Hence the RED. This is a strong angle – why? Because Night City is inhabited, Because the mega-corps have fragmented, emphasizing a dog-eat-dog struggle to come out on top, a notion of the urban jungle. If anything, this reminded me of the fantastic dub-step-y metal-song Red Sun from Metal Gear Revengeance (btw.: That OST is the perfect Cyberpunk soundtrack…):

“Golden rays of the glorious sunshine Setting down, such a blood-red light Now the animals slowly retreat To the shadows – out of sight

Arid breeze blows across the mountains Giving flight to the birds of prey In the distance machines come To transform Eden – day by day“

Those lines perfectly encompass for me the feeling of Cyberpunk Red. More so than the original book, the notion of the city as a jungle, as popularized in post 2000s weird fiction, can be considered to be the proper leitmotif for the game – and in such a world, everyone has an angle, and style is just as important as everything else. Not only is Cool an ability score, social combat/intimidation provides a massive debuff to those you beat. Cyberpunk is a mindset, and one that is conveyed as much via mindset, as via aesthetics.

Attributes are btw. Intelligence, Willpower, Cool, Empathy, Technique, Reflexes, Luck, Body, Dexterity, Movement. The final book will have three ways to construct characters; Hit Points are derived from Body, with wound threshold and death save as further derived stats.

The basic resolution mechanic used by Cyberpunk Red, is to add a Stat, the associated skill, and roll 1d10, then compare that with the DV (Difficulty Value) – if you BEAT the DV, you succeed. Combat is essentially opposed skill check. This, of course, results in an emphasis on ABILITY. If you are good at something, you might not even need to roll; if you suck at something, you’re vulnerable in that regard. Much like the Witcher RPG, this means that the RPG a) can be pretty deadly, and b) that your abilities matter more than in e.g. d20-based games. I can’t provide detailed analysis on the rules of the jumpstart kit, primarily because the rules here are intended for the pregens, etc. Netrunning is also covered, and before you ask, there are proper reasons for the by now quaint notions introduced back in Cyberpunk 2020 to now longer apply – as noted, this does not cater to quaintness, it knows no sacred cows. The tweaks made to the combat engine in particular are, as far as I could judge with the material presented and the playtesting frame I had, rock-solid, though judging such a system without access to the totality is an exercise in speculation – for now, it looks better than the 2020.

As a long-time Shadowrun fan, this should not exactly make me happy, considering how SR hasn’t exactly handled sweeping changes particularly well. And this is where Cyberpunk Red is genuinely superior, at least in my book.

You see, beyond the basics in the rules book (which btw. includes full explanations of slang), the box contains a second such book – the world book, which explains in a rather in-depth view how the world changed from the Cyberpunk 2020 status; this world book contains 50 pages, and is also a glossy softcover.

The world book is an example of the most efficient world-building I have seen so far in RPGs, period. In these few pages, the book not only presents an overview of how the world changed. It also includes the information how you stay out of trouble; how communication works, the weaponry you’re packing, stats for vehicles and their details, how you’ll score jobs, and the like. From food to media, this covers all. As a comparison: FAITH’s Tiantang is more than TWICE the size of this book, covers only one location, and failed utterly in answering ANY of these questions. I can see this new Night City. I can SMELL it. I love it.

I also love the commitment to “realism” - yes, you can do amazing things with cyber-prosthetics, but there are limits. This is grounded, where Shadowrun, for a while now, has moved ever more towards the edges of science-fantasy, and the system supports and mirrors the playstyle – Cyberpunk RED provides a more pronounced unity of theme and rules. And that is coming from a long-term, die-hard Shadowrun fan.

The world book also contains one adventure, as well as several encounter outlines/mini-quests, supplemented by screamsheets, essentially tabloid-like headline articles that serve as great handouts. These encounters, and the adventure (which is, funnily enough, about keeping your apartment complex!), were surprisingly fun, but also represent the only aspect of this set that imho is not as newbie-friendly as it should be. There is no read-aloud text, and the material is pretty text-block-y. An experienced GM will have no issues here, but novices might have a harder time.

Conclusion: Editing and formatting are very good on a formal level – the sequence of the rules-presentation, to the extent they are relevant here, is precise, didactically valid, and does a great job teaching the system. On a formal level, I noticed a few minor typos (it’s instead of its, etc.). Layout is a HUGE improvement over e.g. the Witcher RPG – these books look slick, stylish, and awesome. The level of quality of the cover artwork is also retained in all of the copious interior artworks. These books are gorgeous. As noted, the production values of the box are fantastic. The pdfs comes with detailed, nested bookmarks that make navigation simple and smooth as well. The cartography is full-color and neat.

Okay, in context: The Witcher RPG, when I read it, felt like a mess; it was only when I played it, after having digested the somewhat labyrinthine structure, when I really got to enjoy it. Cyberpunk RED not only has superior production values, it also has superior precision regarding its rules, a smarter, more streamlined presentation – it is genuinely one of the most easy-to-get into games that is not rules-lite that I’ve ever seen. This is not only smooth in how it teaches the rules, it is smooth in how it teaches the aesthetics and adapts them for a new age, writing an aesthetic that is still indebted to classic Cyberpunk, and yet radically novel in its transition of the concepts to a new age, in its reframing of what cyberpunk means in this new era. Mike Pondsmith, Cody Pondsmith, David Ackerman, J Gray and James Hutt have achieved a remarkable feat here, and I am not engaging in hyperbole when I’m saying that I want this game right now. I want to play the finished game. I want a whole ton of books for that world. I am truly excited about this, and if the final book can maintain this quality, we might be looking at a #1 Top Ten spot. My final verdict will clock in at 5 stars + seal of approval.

One caveat, though: As noted above, this is the jumpstart kit; whether the final book can live up to this awesomeness remains to be seen. For a long-term game, this lacks the customization options and transparency regarding some rules details, obviously.

Endzeitgeist out.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Mark H. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/29/2019 15:20:35

Wonderful art and well put together. For a jumpstart "preview" kit of the upcommin RED edition - this is a wonderful product for the price.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Matthew S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/20/2019 15:55:28

Cyberpunk Red promises to be a return to 2020 form after less successful iterations of the setting, and improves upon a lot of what went before.

Style High points: The graphics and artwork surpass any previous version of the game, while still being evocative. The layout is a stark red and black outline around the page, with a few callouts rendered as grafitti. The artwork is full-color, competently rendered art, depicting Edgerunners and their equipment in dismal environments. No Nagel knock-offs or Prepper Barbies to be found.

Low Points: The physical version of the books are in a square format, and the PDF version suffers. While the body of the text is in a two-column format, each chapter header uses a page-width column instead, forcing to you to pan or squint. The Screamsheets at the back of the World Book look like they're out of the 2020 edition, with no nod to the 25 years of page layout software evolution in or out of the game.

Substance The setting has advanced 25 years, to 2045. Night City has been destroyed and rebuilt, and no one's in control any more. Corporations, gangs, and Nomad packs are the powers that be, seizing territory and keeping what little peace is to be had. The NET is broken, and its treasures are now hidden in off-grid systems Runners essentially have to walk to. Cyberware has stalled, at least locally, and Night Citizens are keeping up with a DIY aesthetic.

High points: It's cool to see the setting take a hammer to its sacred cows. Corps aren't the enemy they used to be, and come off as more human than monolithic. The NET has had a functional revision that, while a little contrived, makes running fast and puts it directly in combat time, and is easily going to be the most significant change to gameplay.

Low points: It's a jumpstart, there's not a lot of crunch for a crunch-heavy system. All the toys are listed on the pregens, and that's all you get, despite about four adventure's worth of GM material. Notably missing is what makes each Role unique: only the Netrunner gets any Role-specific rules provided. Setting-wise, there's been almost 3 decades' worth of technosocial change in the real world that makes a once edgy setting feel like retro-futurism. This is probably unavoidable, and difficult to balance between a new edition, a videogame license that takes things ahead another 30 years, and 30 years' divergence from the real world.

Attitude is Everything It's a promising update, though I'm going to recommend buying the physical box over digital. It doesn't yet feel new. I'm hoping, in particular, for changes to the rules that recognize queerness, disability, and mental health have dimensions that older rulesets were not respectful of. Won't know until we get closer to the release date.

[4 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Ehn J. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/16/2019 23:29:25

I was gifted this product for review purposes.

That out of the way, I went into this with absolutely no idea what to expect. I'd read shadowrun 5e and a bit of other stuff that could possibly relate, but this was my first foray into the world of cyberpunk. And what I saw did a lot to separate itself out from the rest of the crowd in its worldbuilding. But I'm getting ahead of myself; I'd like to start with the mechanics.

The first thing I'd like to touch on is the new combat system (which is as the book labels it "Thursday Night Throwdown", or TNTD), which is very player friendly. There's no attempt to make a completely realistic combat system which completely grinds the game to a halt in order to make for a slower experience. Instead, the gunplay is presented in a way that can be gotten across quick and easily, making for a more frantic and fun experience. Combat allows both offensive and defensive contributions, and while the base system may feel a bit too basic for those wanting a tactical masterpiece, I believe that the flow of combat is enhanced by what's being done here. Efforts were made to make melee combat viable despite the prevelance of guns, something I appreciate (something that's a bad option isn't an option to me), although there are patches here that I think could be abused by a savvy team (such as suppressing fire). Regardless, you won't be leafing through 500+ pages to find out how to shoot your gun, leading to more time getting to feel like a free wheeling badass.

The social mechanics as well as the stat system also follows this rule of simplicity, with 10 stats you can have along with very clear ways of determining success and failue through simple checks with reasonable levels of ease. Doing anything in Cyberpunk RED should be quite easy, which is nice as there could have been a lot of needless complication. I'm sure the finished product will add more complexity, but for a demo, this is quite nice and will help a lot in getting me into the vibe of setting up a proper game for even the newest of players.

There is an issue here with the netrunning system. It's comprehensive, but that's the problem. Of anything presented here, it has the most options by far, and tries to cram a lot of information into the same amount of space that similar concepts that are less complex are given. The ideas behind it feel more scattered in how they're presented, and I find it difficult to recommend including netrunners in a first run of this. Where everything else just feels like a teaser, the netrunner rules feel like a fully fleshed out subsystem. Let me say though that the netrunning does NOT take the player out of combat and cause a party split, but it will cause the GM to have to have different encounters set up for both netrunners and 'meatspace' players, so those who want to incude netrunning may want to consider having more players who can interact with this aspect of the game to validate the effort of including it in their game more properly unless you're okay prepping what amounts to a second encounter for situations where players want to involve themselves in this subsystem.

Enough about the mechanics though, it's time to talk about the worldbuilding. And let me tell you, I was not expecting nearly this much detail about the world in this product. There's about 40 pages given to this topic, which helps give you a sense of what's going on. From what I can tell, it's 25 years past CP2020, and there's been quite a few changes. It feels as though there's been a scaling down of widespread tech in a way that I wasn't expecting, with communication and conflict being on a smaller scale. This isn't a bad thing, and personally I think it helps push things into a new direction that's different from what one would expect. The world feels even more gritty than I would have expected, with permanance being a rarity in all facets of life.

A lot of the worldbuilding took me by surprise, and while a solid amount of the book is dedicated to the well known location known as Night City, there's plenty that's just about the world surrounding it. While there's enough detail to be daunting here, I think that it hits the high points of the world well enough where you have a strong understanding of the setting, even if you wanted to run the game in other places. The book itself is interspersed with quotes from what I assume to be important NPCs from the world which help to give a bit more color to things, mostly setting the mood and letting you know that things are going to be bad. And might I add that the line about what does and doesn't apply to cyber psychosis was well appreciated by quite a few friends of mine.

As a small aside, the slang that typically comes from books like this feels very natural. I have an issue when RPGs have their own slang to include while playing that makes it feel very stiff and robotic and breaks immersion, but the CPR slang has a very natural feel to it which makes it seem like something that you could reasonably say without feeling silly. It's a small but important detail to worldbuilding that I think helps the strength of the overall product, and something that definitely makes me feel like I could integrate it into my games and lexicon.

The sample adventure as well as a lot of other things made sure that you'll have groups who are prepared to 'rock out' properly once the dice hit the table, and while the gear and other such things are quite barebones (especially compared to the comprehensive netrunning section), this is absolutely enough to give people a taste of things to come before the full release is at our doorstep. Any issues I have can easily be chalked up to 'it's just a demo', and if I kept saying "I wish it had X thing in it", by the end of it I'd be complaining that a demo kit wasn't the full CRB. The only thing I'd like to see in the full release is for netrunning to be portrayed in a cleaner fashion, but that's something editing could clear up, and isn't a big fear of mine for this product

For my first foray into the gritty world of cyberwear and circuitry, I would say I'm definitely intrigued. There's a real style to the book that feels like there's more to come, that I've only seen the tip of the iceberg as far as this system is concerned, and it's got me hooked.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by James S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/12/2019 11:05:14

I am a longtime Cyberpunk fan, starting with CP2013. I ran a 7 year campaign in the 90s. I was...disappointed with CPv3 for many reasons not least of which that it seemed to be a completely unrelated take on the genre and ignored what was great about the game. Cyberpunk Red seems to be the sequel to CP2020 that I had wished for. I cannot wait to see the full game.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Haden H. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/12/2019 00:30:42

Long time Shadowrun fan. The 'new' holder of the IP - Catalyst Game Lab is doing a horrid job in the new 6th Edition of Shadowrun. The Starterbox was full of errors, and just poorly produced. Cyberware is worthless, and there is no punk feel felt anywhere in the universe anymore. Magicrun it has truthfully become.

I jumped ship to Cyberpunk RED. Opening up the Jumpstart Kit I was amazed at the production value and well editied information that grabbed my love for Cyberpunk. The art, the feel of the world. Dripping cyberpunk style with some Mad Max tossed in. I can't wait until the core book comes out.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Kazuli K. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/10/2019 09:35:32

As a Cyberpunk 2020 aficionado, I can safely say I will only be using the Cyberpunk Red rules from now on. The importance of having streamlined rules cannot be underestimated, particularly for those with a busy work schedule. As a product, the Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit from R. Talsorian Games, delivers on its goal to introduce new people to the hobby and the Cyberpunk universe, so it is worth giving it a try. I also believe veteran players will benefit from using the updated ruleset in their 2020 games. For a more indepth look: Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit Review

[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Derrick L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/06/2019 14:53:47

I got a hold of my phyical copy of the JumpStart Kit while at GenCon this year, and I was pleasently surprised how nice this set was. RTalsorian has REALLY upped their production on the box set and on the interior art, with the entire two book set being full color with tabletop maps, standees The artwork is really top notch. While I haven't played this new iternation of Cyberpunk yet, the rules seem really smooth with some much needed modern tweeking. It is also clear there is much more to come when the full version of Cyberpunk RED is eventually released. It's especially nice to have RTalsorian putting so much effort into this new generation of CP RPGing.

Great to have Cyberpunk back!


[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games Inc.
by Bryan B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/04/2019 07:01:08

I haven't played 2020 for (coincidentally) well over twenty years. I've been chomping at the bit for a modern edition of it ever since Cyberpunk 2077 and Cyberpunk Red were announced.

Finally, I get a taste of what Mike and team are putting together for the modern era of Cyberpunk, and though I've only skimmed it, I (mostly) love it so far.

It's a peculiar mix of old school and modern RPG sensibilities that streamlines what my corroded memory recalls of 2020. It seems like they've gone to some lengths to pair down some of the unnecessary chaff from 2020's era into something sleeker and simpler (and yet, still crunchy enough to avoid blandness) without losing the flavor of that grand old game.

That said, the production values themselves are sleek, flashy yet somehow understated, and also consistent with the flavor of the past.

I'm eager to put this on the table and see how it all shakes out. Provisionally, it's a 4/5.

But if it plays as fluid as it looks, it will be love. {{Edit}} But not a pure love as I'm not entirely sold on the somewhat post-apocalyptic setting they are going for with the current timeline. It seems to me like they are trying to dial back a bit too much of what I love about the genre to make it more gritty when there was already plenty of room for that. They are, to me, narratively trying to scuff and tarnish the chrome a bit too much. I suspect were I to run this, I'd kick the timeline forward into a new chrome-age rather than the wastebasket Night City is in The Red.

However, I've missed this, and until I got a look at this, I didn't realize how much. We've (my friends and I) done a lot of Shadowrun in our years, but I never quite groked how much I missed the unique taste of Cyberpunk.

Hit the streets choomba. There's a city to burn...once it's been rebuilt so we can tear it all down again.

[4 of 5 Stars!]
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