|“||Nobody ever leaves Night City. Except in a body bag||„|
— Bes Isis, Cyberpunk 2020
Night City is a city in the Free State of Northern California. It is located in the west coast of the United States in the Del Coronado Bay. As of the year 2020 it is said to have around five million inhabitants across its many boroughs, and in 2077 was voted "the worst place to live in America". It is the central location in the pen and paper RPG series Cyberpunk 2013, 2020 and V 3.0 and the upcoming Cyberpunk 2077 video game.
Night City was the brainchild of businessman Richard Night, who became dissatisfied with his experiences in managing corporate construction projects as part of his company Halsey, Ferris and Night. This led him to break off and form his own company Night International, with the end goal of creating the ideal city.
Situated in the Del Coronado bay, the city was originally going to be known as Coronado City and Richard Night envisioned it as a utopia, in which cities across the country could look up to as the gold standard. After the collapse many of the megacorps also looked at creating such a space, in which crime and poverty were non-existent, as well as the laws that impeded their sometimes unethical work. By 1992 megacorps Arasaka, EBM and Petrochem had all invested heavily in Coronado City. Night purchased many of the rights as well as large swaths of land surrounding the Del Coronado bay from Petrochem to secure the land for the new city.
By 1993 the construction for the city was well under way, and the bay had been dredged and the upper peninsula had been extended. The existing residents of Del Coronado had been relocated to a new area known as Old Downtown and the central hub of the city, where the corporations were based would be the new downtown area.
The Mob Wars
After Richard Night's death in 1998, the city was renamed Night City in his memory, after which several different groups vied for control. Local mob figures battled with the Corporations resulting in anarchy in several sectors and the police force became ineffective against such groups. By 2005 the mob had control of the city's infrastructure and the corporations - who had no desire to govern - retreated back to their corporate strongholds and the suburbs.
The period between 2009 and 2011 was known as the mob wars. Night City had grown to be incredibly violent, with murder and gang activity at an all time high. It is unclear whether the corporations attempted to deal with the mob, but it is known that the Mob was bad business for the megacorps. The conflict came to an end when heavily armored Arasaka paramilitaries took to the streets in a show of force, overwhelming the Mob forces and leaving them effectively defeated.
The Corporations installed puppets in the local government and began the process of cleaning up the war-torn city. Night City's homeless problem grew out of control when new laws stated that anyone without the finances to renovate their home would be removed. Almost all of the city's affordable housing was occupied by the corps troops, resulting in the displacement of hundreds of residents. By the year 2020 the mob wars were a distant memory and Night City had become a relativity peaceful place, with the downtown area being policed at all times. However many dangers still remain, and the scars of previous conflicts have not yet healed. Weapons are commonplace in everyone's day to day lives and it would not be out of the ordinary to see a gun next to a briefcase on the sidewalk.
Location in Cyberpunk 2077
According to Mike Pondsmith: "Night City was created on the "bones" of Morro Bay, a town I often drove through on my various road trips. I liked the place and in one of those flights of fancy young designers have, I wondered what it would take to buy the whole thing. The basic structure is still there in the Night City map, if one allows for an impressive amount of fill required to build out the upper area around the "Rock." (this is not unthinkable--a large amount of downtown Seattle and San Francisco were both built on fill ). I actually have a map that shows how the whole thing goes together geologically; one day I'll have to post it."
Zones of Night City
The Night City metropolis is built up on dozens of small zones, and is surrounded by larger suburban zones. Zones A through C make up the downtown area, Zone D is the violent crime-ridden hell hole known as the Combat Zone, and Zones E through J are the wider suburban area.
- Corp Center
- Bank Block
- Medical Center
- Old Downtown
- New Harbor Area
- Night University
- Lake Park
- Eastpark and Japantown
- Little China
- Studio City
- Charter Hill
- Combat Zone
Zone E - South Night City
- Municipal Sewage Plant
- San Morro Bay Cargo and Container Port
- Petrochem Refinery Terminal
Zone F - Westbrook
- Executive Estates
Zone G - Pacifica
- Westwynd Estates
- Playland by the Sea
- Pacifica Archology
Zone H - Northoak
- The Oaks
- NORPAC Naval HQ
- NORCAL Airforce HQ
- NORCAL Army HQ
Zone I - Rancho Coronado
Zone J - Heywood
- Arasaka Weapons Facility
- Biotechnica Research Station
- EBM Remote Assembly Factory
- Militech Training Facility
Cyberpunk 2077 districts
Cyberpunk 2077 shares some districts in common with the traditional layout of Night City, with some exceptions. The Badlands on the outskirts of the city are explorable. Each district will have a dominant gang. The city is divided into six districts, each with their own environment and denizens:
- City Center: commercial district, containing tall skyscrapers, home to many of the game's corporations.
- Watson District: Asian-influenced, run-down buildings once owned by corporations, home to immigrants
- Westbrook District: Japantown, home to wealthy elites
- Heywood: growing gangs, largely Latino, but also a wealthy district
- Pacifica: slums, full of gangs
- Santo Domingo: industrial district
FISK, C. Night City Sourcebook. 1st ed. Berkeley CA: R.Talsorian Games, 1991