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Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty's New Abilities Look Like Mortal Kombat Fatalities

CD Projekt Red gave one last look at the free update before it's released

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A mercenary on a red motorcycle catches gunfire from a car.
Image: CD Projekt Red

Cyberpunk 2077's Phantom Liberty expansion will deliver an entirely new storyline featuring actor Idris Elba when it arrives on September 26. Just as exciting, however, are all the overhauled systems, mechanics, and features of the world arriving alongside it in a free version 2.0 update. CD Projekt Red showed some of them in action in the DLC’s latest trailer.

Shown during the 2023 Gamescom Opening Night showcase, the aptly titled “New Ways to Play” teaser previewed redesigned skill trees, improved police chases, and vehicle combat. Whether players buy the $30 Phantom Liberty expansion or not, everyone who owns Cyberpunk 2077 will get to access these new features as long as they’re playing on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, or PC (the 2.0 update is only for “next-gen” consoles).

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Here’s a look at the trailer:

Near the beginning it shows protagonist V jumping off a motorcycle into a group of enemies and hitting them with a shockwave that erupts as a giant hammer smashes the concrete. A bunch of brand-new perks include “finisher” for decapitating someone, “bullet deflect” to bat away incoming enemy fire, “opportunist” for lethal takedowns, and a dash ability to close in on distant opponents. There’s also a whole set of Relic perks, including a blink ability called “spatial mapping,” and a “limiter removal” that shows V punching a guy until his body explodes. It’s all got the feel of a sci-fi Dishonored mixed with Mortal Kombat.

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Gif: CD Projekt Red / Kotaku

The new police chases and vehicle combat are eqaully impressive looking. V can shoot out the windows with her firearm or hack enemy vehicles to send them spiraling out of control or make them blow up altogether. Police, meanwhile, try to run her off the road, set up barricades, and eventually surround her, only for her to unleash built-in Gatling guns and spin around in a grisly circle of carnage. It’s the Cyberpunk fans had hoped for from the original trailers years ago, but which didn’t materialize in the broken game that launched in 2020.

That game has already markedly improved, and is arguably in a great spot now, even if the underlying story, structure, and vision can still be underwhelming. Phantom Liberty and the free 2.0 update look like they could radically transform the game once again into something closer to the cyberpunk Grand Theft Auto that players dreamed about.