When Cyberpunk: Edgerunners launched on Netflix, it made a huge plot point out of cyberpsychosis. In the world of Cyberpunk, this is the idea that as a person augments their body with cybernetics, they will eventually affect their sanity and ability to function.
Because it was so prominent in the anime, it retroactively became very apparent that Cyberpunk 2077 doesn’t engage with this on a mechanical level. There are some quests that involve the condition narratively, like a number of cyberpsycho minibosses you’re effectively contracted to take down, but the condition can’t impact you, no matter how much tech you augment yourself with. That’s set to change a bit, however, with September’s Phantom Liberty expansion. While it doesn’t sound like protagonist V will be at risk for full-blown cyberpsychosis, the expansion will introduce some potential—albeit optional—drawbacks to your cybernetics.
Speaking with VGC, Cyberpunk 2077 quest director Pawel Sasko explained that a new cyberware capacity perk will allow you to overhaul your cyberware enhancements so that they’re more powerful, but at the expense of some downsides. The example given is enhanced combat capability at the expense of your health. Protagonist V might not start hallucinating and shooting at people who aren’t there the way characters in the anime do, but there’s some acknowledgement of the lore here.
“It’s all about this balance between risk and reward,” Sasko explained. “We are not going as far as the introduction of cyberpsychosis though, have that in mind.”
This change comes as part of a sweeping rework of Cyberpunk 2077’s base systems, including retooled skill trees and new car chase mechanics. It’s pretty substantial, and having played through a chunk of it, I’m already a little sad Phantom Liberty is going to be the only expansion we’ll get. If you want to try out some of these changes yourself but aren’t sure if you want to throw down the $30 for the expansion, a lot of the systemic changes are coming to the main game free of charge.