Despite a hectic launch at the end of 2020, Cyberpunk 2077 is a deep game steeped in rich lore and a story spanning many different themes and plot threads. Moving away from the third-person hack-and-slash gameplay of the Witcher series in favor of a tight first-person shooter and rarely leaving gameplay for cutscenes meant that Cyberpunk 2077 turned out to be a much more personal and in-depth experience. Combined with the ever-evolving relationship between the two protagonists and the urgency the story hammered home every time a Relic malfunction occurred, Cyberpunk 2077 tells a unique, personal and intimate story.
Players take on the character of V in Cyberpunk 2077, a mercenary from one of three different backgrounds trying to make a name for himself in the bustling dystopian metropolis of Night City. After carving out a place for himself in the mercenary scene, V is asked to steal The Relic, a prototype piece of technology that can supposedly save someone’s soul like any software. The relic is currently owned by Arasaka Corporation, one of the largest megacorporations in the world. If V can steal the chip and get away, not only would they be rich beyond belief, but they’d go down in history as a legend of Night City.
When preparing the Cyberpunk 2077V’s first big heist, V is introduced to a variety of characters. They are supported by Jackie Wells: a close friend and fellow mercenary, Dexter DeShawn: a notorious local repairman and legend in his own right, and Evelyn Parker: the mysterious client entangled with Arasaka who wants the chip for unknown reasons. V is introduced to more allies during Cyberpunk 2077, including a sensitive vending machine; Goro Takemura, bodyguard of the head of the Arasaka company; Alt Cunningham, an AI version of the greatest netrunner of all time; and, of course, the game’s mascot, Johnny Silverhand, rocker legend and digital ghost.
Both V and Jackie are killed at the end of Cyberpunk 2077’s first act
Even the best laid out plains fall awry, and Cyberpunk 2077The Relic Heist does this in spectacular fashion. The heist is first derailed when Saburo Arasaka, the reclusive leader of the Arasaka Society, is killed by his son Saburo while V and Jackie watch from hiding. Yorinobu then puts the building under lock and key, telling Takemura (Saburo’s bodyguard) that Saburo had been poisoned. Before long, V and Jackie are forced to jump from the penthouse window and land somewhere in the building below, seriously injuring them both. The landing also damages the relic’s casing, forcing Jackie to insert it into her brain to keep it stable.
After taking one of the many paths through Cyberpunk 2077‘s Konpeki Plaza, he later passes it to V shortly before bleeding into the getaway car. Despite having the relic and having momentarily escaped Arasaka, Dexter DeShawn decides it is safer to cut the details. At the climax of the mission and Act I of the game, Dexter ambushes V and shoots them in the head, killing them. Death is not the end for V, however, as the relic repairs the damage to his brain and begins crushing him to make room for his current occupant, Johnny Silverhand.
Johnny Silverhand was killed by Soulkiller, an advanced AI designed to copy a person’s psyche into data
Johnny Silverhand’s engram, or a copy of his psyche, ended up on the relic after he was captured and killed during his attack on Arasaka Tower. 10 years earlier, Arasaka had kidnapped Alt Cunningham – a brilliant netrunner and author of Soulkiller – to take control of it. Prove why Johnny Silverhand is so convincing in Cyberpunk 2077, he tried and failed to save her, only succeeding in sealing his engram in Arasaka’s computer system outside of her body. He spent the next 10 years gathering resources for an attack on Arasaka, and in 2023 he returned to the tower to free Alt and destroy it.
Johnny was successful on both fronts, causing more property damage than Cyberpunk 2077 cost to do, but not without being captured by Arasaka. He was then taken to a remote location and interrogated by agents of Arasaka before being subjected to Soulkiller and having his engram stored on the relic. He will remain there until the events of Cyberpunk 2077 happen and put Johnny back in V’s head.
Cyberpunk 2077 – V will die unless relic is removed or canceled
V passes the majority of Cyberpunk 2077The long history of trying to find a way to postpone or reverse their impending death at the hands of the relic. The chip is designed to take over a non-functioning brain and allow the psyche stored inside to take over the body. The Relic’s creators never considered caring for a non-brain-dead host, and as such, V’s subconscious is slowly being overwritten by Johnny Silverhand’s.
While initially okay with this, Johnny quickly changes his mind and tries to help V save his life. There are several paths V takes to pursue this goal, each dealing with a specific part of the design of the Relic or the heist itself. During Cyberpunk 2077 V tracks down the mysterious puppeteers behind the Relic’s heist, the Relic’s chief engineer, and even Empire heir Arasaka in an effort to save their lives. V may also take some time to pursue some of the Cyberpunk 2077Extended romances if they need companionship.
Evelyn Parker wanted the Voodoo Boys relic in Cyberpunk 2077
Evelyn Parker, the woman who originally contracted the Relic heist, was doing so under orders from the Voodoo Boys, Cyberpunk 2077The Pacifica gang of netrunners are based in the ruined yachting town of Pacifica. They are in a perpetual turf war with the rest of Night City, and outsiders are expressly not welcome in their territory. However, V is able to find an in thanks to the local repairman, Mr. Hands.
V discovers that the Voodoo Boys knew Silverhand’s consciousness was on the relic and wanted to use it to try to contact the A.I. version of Alt Cunningham that Johnny had freed from Arasaka Tower years before. V eventually tries to work with Cyberpunk 2077‘s feared the Voodoo Boys gang, believing they could help remove the relic without being killed in the process. After a conversation with Alt deep in the Net, V discovers that the Voodoo Boys are unable to help with the chip.
Cyberpunk 2077 Spoilers – Relic Chief Engineer Can’t Help V
Mid Road Cyberpunk 2077, after a daring kidnapping involving shooting down a hovercraft and chasing after the survivors of the crash, V is able to sit and talk with Anders Hellman, the chief engineer of the version of the relic in their head . After talking with Hellman, it is revealed that not only is it impossible to remove the relic without killing V, but that the process of crushing V’s personality may have already begun and be irreversible. He talks about the process of imprinting an engram (which some consider to be Cyberpunk 2077 and black mirror making the same mistake), and finally concludes that V and Silverhand may already be a single entity. After retrieving the schematics and documentation for the project from Hellman, V leaves him with Takemura and sets out to find another possible lead to keep himself alive.
Cyberpunk 2077 Spoilers – V Can’t Be Saved, But Johnny Can
After following all the leads in Cyberpunk 2077 and choosing from his available endings, it is revealed that regardless of the outcome, the damage done to V’s system was too severe to heal. Their brains have been overwritten by the chip to make it more inhabitable for Johnny, and as such is now uninhabitable by V. If V chooses to be separated from Johnny in one of the endgame missions, he will not will remain only a few weeks before dying. brain damage suffered by the relic. If V decides to let Johnny have his body in one of the Cyberpunk 2077‘s many endings, then Johnny will be able to live but V will remain a ghost on the Net. Although some ending paths hint that there may be more to V’s condition, the implication is that V was doomed at the time Dex shot them.
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