Mike Pondsmith says Cyberpunk “a warning, not an aspiration”

Cyberpunk Red creator Mike Pondsmith has spoken out in support of the anti-racism movement, asserting that “Cyberpunk was a warning, not an aspiration.”

In a new post by R. Talsorian Games, the publisher of the Cyberpunk pen-and-paper RPG franchise, Pondsmith’s credentials were first highlighted.

“Mike Pondsmith, as many of you might know, is black. RTG is, to our knowledge, the first major roleplaying company founded by a black man,” the post begins. “It remains, in our opinion, one of the most prominent black-owned and operated tabletop game companies. Until just last year he was the only black person in the Origins Hall of Fame. And he’s aware of how public the upcoming Cyberpunk 2077 video game has made his profile.”

The post continues to say that Pondsmith himself is taking time to ponder his thoughts before a formal statement, but condemns racism and supports the Black Lives Matter movement in the meantime.

“We don’t just condemn racism. We despise it,” the publisher’s statement continues. “People, no matter the color of their skin, their gender identity, their sexual preference, their ethnicity, their physical and mental differences, their age, or their religion have a right to live their lives without worrying about being harassed or beaten or killed by others, especially others with power and authority.

“When power is abused, people have the right and, in fact, the duty to stand up, protest that abuse, and demand accountability.”

Quoting Pondsmith, the post concludes by stating, “Cyberpunk was a warning, not an aspiration,” alongside confirmation the publisher has donated $2,000 USD to The Bail Project, an organisation that provides bail assistance to protestors currently engaging in anti-racist demonstrations.

Cyberpunk Red is available now. CD Projekt Red’s Cyberpunk 2077 is scheduled for a 17 September release on Windows PC, Xbox One and PS4. A Stadia release will follow where available in 2020; a next-gen release on Xbox Series X and PS5 is planned for 2021.

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About the author

Steve Wright

Steve's the owner of this very site and an active games journalist for the past ten years. He's a Canadian-Australian gay gaming geek, ice hockey player and fan. Husband to Matt and cat dad to Wally and Quinn.

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