In my defense, I didn't notice the potato head halflings until after I purchased the book.Because... potato head halflings?
No, it's not that. The economy just doesn't make sense when it comes to the price of goods. A 50 round drum magazine for your rifle costs 500 eurodollars. A cyber leg also costs 500 eurodollars. A drum magazine for a rifle is something a halfway competent machinest could make in their garage with some sheet metal and basic tools whereas a cybernetic leg requires sophisticated manufacturing infrastructure including a well educated workforce and a robust supply chain. But they're both 500 eurodollars?So, they don't have loans in the future?
The game takes place more than twenty years after the 4th Corporate War which disrupted a lot of the infrastructure meaning it's still difficult to manfucature things. So a crummy sub-compact car, the equivalent of a Yugo, costs about $20,000 euros, and is outside the reach of almost everyone. This doesn't explain why a sophisticated piece of equipment like a cybernetic leg costs the same amount as a drum magazine.
Some people might like the setting, but I don't. I don't like the idea that group of cyberpunks have to take the bus to their next mission because nobody can afford a Yugo let alone a van. I don't like the fact that the special ability of one of the character roles, the Nomad, is that they have access to a car. Their special ability is to be the group's ride? It's just incredibly lame. Combine the bad setting with lackluster combat rules and uninspiring cybernetics and it's just not a worthy successor to Cyberpunk 2020. Cyberpunk Red isn't the worst RPG I've ever played, but it's one of the most disappointing. And I feel bad saying this because I have a lot of love for Mike Pondsmith. Even after 30 years, the stuff he made for Cyberpunk 2020 is still good.