Fans have wanted to know just how far Cyberpunk 2077‘s character creator goes ever since the game was announced. After a lengthy hands-on session with the game, I can tell you: it’s pretty damn deep — and, yes, you can customise your junk.
The press and public has had access to the game’s first two acts so far. The first preview contained the game’s character creator and the entire opening chapter, which the second round of previews included about ten hours of gameplay after that point.
There’s plenty to say about the game itself, but for those who are just wondering what you’ll have access to in terms of options, here’s what you need to know.
This post has been updated with new options that can now be revealed following the lift of Cyberpunk 2077’s embargo.
Cyberpunk 2077: Character Customisation
The character creator is pretty extensive, much like you’d see in a Fallout game or a suitably large open-world RPG, and there’s a ton of options to play around with. You start by choosing one of three life paths, Nomad, Street Kid and Corpo. These don’t affect your attributes or perks, but each of the life classes will have a different prologue — the Nomad starts in the Badlands, while the Corpo starts by throwing up in a bathroom in Arasaka’s HQ.
Other options like Netrunner or Solo, roles from the original Cyberpunk 2020 class book and referenced in the Cyberpunk 2077 deep dive, aren’t featured in the character creator. You will hear them referenced at various points throughout the game in major and minor missions, but in Cyberpunk 2077 this is more of an indication towards a character’s build preference than an out-and-out class.
A key difference with the lifepaths is the impact on your dialogue choices later on. In an early mission to recover a prototype Militech bot, you have the choice of meeting up with a Militech agent. You don’t have to meet her; you don’t have to work with her either. But if you have a corpo background, you’re given another option to resolve your conversation: you understand how problematic her position is, and that if it’s not resolved, her bosses will likely be done with her real fast.
It’s a useful argument to make when there’s a gun pointed at your face, basically.
After grappling with that choice, it’s down to the body and appearance. The visual look doesn’t have the brown tinge of the screenshot above, and there’s no colours for the skin tone or eye colours any more. On the right is a set of numbered options for each of the various customisations, your character in the middle that can be fully rotated, a set of three presets on the left, as well as a random character generator.
For those who want to see every option, there’s a lot:
- 12 different skin tones (male/female)
- 5 skin types
- 38 types of hair, including bald, with 24 types of hair colour
- 21 types of eyes (this affects the size and placement of the eyes)
- 18 eye colours, as well as 21 cyberised options (see image above)
- 8 eyebrow options, plus off, and 8 eyebrow colours
- 21 noses
- 21 mouth types
- 21 jaw options
- 21 types of ears
- 8 types of cyberware (plus none)
- 9 types of facial scars (plus none)
- 11 facial tattoos (plus none)
- 14 types of piercings (plus none) and 7 piercing colours for females, 16 piercings for men
- 12 beards (plus none) and 7 beard styles
- 24 beard colours
- 5 different types of teeth
- 8 types of eye makeup (plus none), with 9 colours
- 7 types of lip makeup (plus none), with 9 colours
- 3 types of blemishes, 6 types of blemish colours
- 3 types of nipples for females, on/off for males
- 5 body tattoos
- 2 body scars
- 3 chest size options (small, default, big)
- Circumcised and uncircumcised penis, or a vagina
- Options for penis length
- 5 pubic hair styles for both genders
- 5 pubic hair colours
If you want to see the genitalia — and how that works with the game’s sex scenes — there’s a NSFW article covering all of that here.
Your gender is also not tied to your character model. You start by picking a female or male-presenting version of V, but your character’s pronouns and how other characters talk to your V is determined by the voice you choose.
And as for the nudity, it’s disabled by default. If you want it hanging out there, then have at it. But what’s nice is that the game will at least honour your choice, if you then want to randomise your character. I cycled through the randomised character generator for about two minutes straight, and it never actively changed the genitalia preferences (mine were disabled).
And that’s about how long it took the character generator’s randomisation would spit out similar models. Everything else until that point was genuinely distinct. Even just flipping between the random models looks nice. The whole character changes, but there’s this extra little transition as the lips contract or tighten, the eye-sockets expand or recede. It’s slick.
There’s plenty of mirrors, ray-traced reflections, ray-traced shadows and ray-traced lighting. (The review version of the game supplied to Kotaku Australia also supported ray tracing on AMD cards, but due to restrictions around Denuvo’s DRM, this couldn’t be tested prior to launch. The AMD support was also removed before the game’s release, but will be added back in a future update.)
Cyberpunk 2077 also supports the latest version of Nvidia’s AI-powered DLSS, which leverages neural networks to upscale an image from a lower resolution to improve performance. AMD’s FidelityFX dynamic resolution technology is also supported.
Either way, you’ll have plenty of opportunity to see your avatar in the flesh. And what’s neat is that the game recognises your character’s choices. If you choose to play V as a male, one of the perks in the game appears as Demolition Man. If your character identifies as a female — and this doesn’t lock out how you want to customise your character’s appearance either – the perk changes to Demolition Femme instead.
Other bits of language change too. Some of these aren’t gender related, but more specific to the character class you chose. In a later scene from the opening hours, V finds themselves in a chair going through a braindance. It’s basically a Ghost in the Shell-esque sequence where you relive an external memory, but like Remember Me or Life is Strange, the player has the ability to pause, rewind, and analyse the surroundings from where the memory was taken.
In the braindance sequence, a thug attempts to rob a store before being shot in the head. In the playthrough from footage supplied to press by CD Projekt Red, V talks about how reliving the experience:
That was … too much. Felt … could feel the guy’s … pain, his stress, his … hope? Hope wrapped up in somethin’ else…
In my preview playthrough, V — who had a corporate background with Arasaka — was accompanied by a second character. Judy didn’t approach the braindance chair where V is sitting, and instead, V complains about not getting enough warning:
“Coulda warned me how much it hurts to die.”
Attributes are your main other choice during the character creator screen, but this is less of an important choice than you might initially think. You start with five skills all at 3 points: Body, Intelligence, Reflexes, Technical Ability and Cool. You’re given 7 points in the creator to alter your stats, although you can only max out skills to 6.
After you’ve picked your preferred skills and locked in your avatar, it’s time for Cyberpunk 2077‘s opening. And if you want to know how the game plays from there — without spoilers — then check our full impressions right here.