Cyberpunk 2077 does offer a very open system for creating your character build: there are no classes, so everything depends on how you distribute your Attribute Points and Perk Points. Meanwhile, you will be leveling your Skills by directly using them. Your Skills will be at the heart of your character build planning, since you will most likely be leveling the aspects of your character that you use the most. This guide will focus on the Character Skills in Cyberpunk 2077, how you level these Skills up, and what benefits you unlock by doing so.
Warning: This guide is based on the in-progress information available before the official release of the game. The guide will be updated as more information becomes available.
Skills are but a part of your Character’s build. They are regulated by Attributes: you can’t level a Skill higher than your Attribute level, and the maximum level of both will be 10. Meanwhile, special abilities and enhancements to these Skills are unlocked with Perks. Both of those require their own strategy to level, but unlike Skills they deal mostly with point investment and not direct use.
While some people (trainers) will be able to speed up this process by teaching you one of the Skills, some of them can be enhanced through Cyberware. Some Skills can come in useful during dialog, offering responses you wouldn’t be able to pick otherwise.
As an expression of your Attributes and a gateway to your Perks, Skills are very important to level as you distribute your Street Cred and Level XP. At the same time, you don’t want to waste too much time using a Skill that you can’t level up any further because of your Attribute score. So, how do you plan ahead? Knowing what each Skill does for you is an important part of it, but be mindful of the fact that knowing what a particular Skill does and using that Skill are very different things. Likewise, your experience with a particular Skill tree can change dramatically based on its level and the rest of your build.
With that being said, let’s go through each of the Skills individually.
This category of weapons will most likely include katanas.
Serves as a deadly whip-like melee weapon outside of Hacking, but otherwise can allow the player to breach an enemy’s personal connection to the local network from a short distance.
Before you are able to use your hacking abilities to their maximum, you will have to gain control of the local network through an access point. An example would be scanning a surveillance camera, locating a line that leads to an access point, and then clear your way to it.
Depending on what installation you hack into, the process (the mini-game) will be different. For example, a level 2 network (requires Hacking Skill of 2) will unlock basic access through simple command input and additional access when you encode a string of commands to match those of the programs and network on the dashboard. Time limit might become of concern for more difficult infiltrations.
Once you gain control of the local network through an access point, you will be able to perform Quickhacks on the technical equipment in a facility.
Here are some examples we know of so far:
Costs 2 Energy
- You will be able to turn off the security systems, such as the surveillance cameras.
- You will be able to upload a Daemon “Lead_Jammer” into your enemies’ Cyberware in the field.
Costs 3 Energy
- You will be able to upload a Daemon “Overseer” with your ID into the security system to avoid triggering alarms.
- You will be able to override safety on the training robots to deal lethal damage to unsuspecting trainees.
- You will be able to override weights of a bench press to crush the enemy underneath.
- You will be able to upload a Daemon “JackPot” to overload the vending machine’s dispenser mechanism and create a distraction.
Costs 5 Energy
- You will be able to upload a Daemon “Hard_Shutdown” into your enemies’ Cyberware in the field, compromising their ability to fight back.
- You will be able to upload a Daemon “Pinpuller” into your enemies’ Cyberware in the field, causing them to detonate their own grenades.
Costs 6 Energy
- You will be able to remotely take over the security systems, such as the surveillance cameras (allowing you to look around with it).
Available time for Hacking can be increased with the use of consumables that slow down time around you (i.e., they boost your speed).
Strip Off: With an Athletics Skill of Level 2 you can strip an enemy turret of its Rifle gun to immediately use it in the field.
Force Open: With an Athletics Skill of Level 4 and Gorilla Arms you can force open closed doors.
Chokehold: You will be able to sneak behind your target to surprise them with a tight chokehold. From there, you will be able to take them down with a non-lethal option. You can likewise keep holding on to your victim to use them as a meatshield under open fire.
Certain difficult conditions in the battlefield give you a boost to damage.
This Skill will allow you to craft some basic Cyberware, control robots (such as the “Flathead” spiderbot) to help you manipulate enemies or the environment, and override technology in your surroundings alike enemy turrets.
Override: With an Engineering Skill of Level 2 you can override an enemy turret.