¡Mira! Hermana, por favor, carajo, pobrecita, guau, estoy lleno, sopa de fideo. Those are but a few of the Spanish words thrown about to make sure you feel welcome in Cyberpunk 2077’s Heywood right off the bat — that is, if you decide to go for the Streetkid faction.
You still meet up with your Spanish-speaking buddy, Jackie Welles, regardless of which faction you choose at the beginning but Streetkid starts you off in what you could consider more of a “cholo” neighborhood in Heywood — and neighboring Santo Domingo district.
Of course, Cyberpunk 2077 doesn’t necessarily break the mold completely when it comes to featuring Spanish. Like is common practice in most other media, words from the language are usually sprinkled in for “effect” or emphasis, but…I’m not necessarily mad it.
CD Projekt Red at least shows some nuance within the environments and even with some of the slang being used. Being a Spanish-English interpreter, as my day job, I can appreciate the use of little refrains like “nos van a meter al bote.” In English: “they’re going to throw us in the can/jail.”
One storefront showing “Captain Caliente” is nice and understandable for many English speakers but my favorite so far is seeing “La Huesuda” which literally is “bony” or “big-boned,” but in context is also slang for “death” and fits perfectly within the vibe and world-building Cyberpunk 2077 is trying to build.
There’s also other landmarks that make use of the language, as well. For one, you start off at the bar “El Coyote Cojo,” or Lame Coyote — which can also be a double entendre unto itself — as reggaetón is blasting in the background. And quickly, you meet and drive around with Padre whose government name is Sebastian Ibarra. Those double r’s in the last name? Nicely rolled off the tongue of my cybernetically modified femme fatale character “V.”
There’s, of course, more to see and explore in Night City, but I’m liking what I’m seeing from Cyberpunk 2077 so far and look forward to more adventures with my Spanish-speaking partner-in-crime Jackie Welles as he sprinkles in some more colorful words like “no mames,” “pendejos,” or “chingada madre” as we gun-tote about the city.
Definitely not words to use around the dinner table, kids.