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The best Cyberware upgrades to get first in Cyberpunk 2077

Cyberpunk 2077 gives you various ways to upgrade your character, thanks to multiple skill categories and multiple skill trees within those categories. Even with all the upgrade systems, the Cyberware system is the most interesting. Just like the tabletop RPG, you can install Cyberware mods to augment your character in Cyberpunk 2077, boosting your stats, giving you new abilities, and more.

Like everything in Night City, though, Cyberware is regulated by the almighty eurodollar. Cyberware is an investment in Cyberpunk 2077, with some pieces running tens of thousands of eddies. To get you started on the right path — and hopefully save you some eddies — here are the best Cyberware enhancements you should pick up first in Cyberpunk 2077. 

Further reading

Breaking down Cyberware in Cyberpunk 2077

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Cyberpunk 2077 is more concerned with its story and world than its mechanics, especially in the early game. That includes explaining what Cyberware does and how you can use it.

Cyberware augments different parts of your body, from giving you some extra strength for carrying more equipment to installing retractile blades into your arms. Although Cyberware uses a different name, they’re essentially just skills. Like skills in most action RPGs, there is active, passive, and triggered Cyberware, and most Cyberware is tailored toward a specific play style.

To install Cyberware, you need to visit a Ripperdoc. There are various Ripperdocs around Night City, noted by a forceps icon, and each of them carries slightly different inventory. In addition to Cyberware, Ripperdocs sells crafting specs for Cyberware mods, and they are willing to trade, so you can sell off some extra inventory to them.

You’ll probably need to sell off some of your inventory, too. Cyberware is very expensive in Cyberpunk 2077, with even the cheapest pieces running over 1,000 eurodollars. Many pieces of Cyberware have other requirements, too, including Street Cred and other upgradeable stats.

If you don’t want to pay, you can find Cyberware hidden around the open-world occasionally, and sometimes as a quest reward. Regardless of where you get the Cyberware, you’ll need to visit a Ripperdoc to install it.

Biodyne Mk.1

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Before picking up any other upgrades, you’ll want to upgrade your operating system. The Biodyne Mk.1 is a great choice for that. It’s cheap as far as Cyberware enhancements go, and it will give you a lot more room to expand your Cyberware. It’s identical to the Militech Paraline OS you get early in the game but comes with six base RAM as opposed to two, a buffer size of five, and three mod slots.

It’s not an exciting upgrade, but the extra RAM afforded by the Biodyne Mk.1 will allow you to use more abilities while hacking early, and it gives you a few extra slots to experiment with mods. For most builds, the Biodyne Mk.1 is the first OS upgrade you should purchase. If you prefer a stealthier approach, however, check out the Seocho Electronics Mk.1, too. In addition to more device hacks, the Seocho Electonics OS also gives you a one-RAM discount on covert hacks, though it comes with less RAM than the Biodyne overall.

Biomonitor

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There are a handful of mods for the circulatory system, a few focused on stamina and a few more focused on health. We recommend skipping over the stamina Cyberware unless you’re particularly fond of hand-to-hand combat in Cyberpunk 2077. Instead, pick up the Biomonitor. It’s a health mod that will instantly restore 40% of your health whenever you drop to 15% health or lower.

You have a very generous stamina bar in Cyberpunk 2077, but you can lose health quickly. A few bullets are enough to put you in the red, unlike stamina, which you can pretty freely use without concern that it will run out. Biomonitor buys you a little extra health, but more importantly, it buys you time. You should be stocked with healing items a few hours into Cyberpunk 2077. Biomonitor simply gives you a little extra health to escape to safety and actually use those healing items.

Kerenzikov

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Kerenzikov is Cyberware for the nervous system, and there are four different versions of it available at different rarites (and different prices). They all accomplish the same goal, however: Slowing time while you’re sliding or dodging for a brief second. The uncommon variant pictured above slows time by 60% for 1.8 seconds while you’re sliding or dodging, while the legendary version — which costs six times as much — slows time by 90% for 3.5 seconds.

If you’re playing aggressively, Kerenzikov is a must-own. Sliding in Cyberpunk 2077 certainly isn’t the same as sliding in Apex Legends. With Kerenzikov, however, you can still line up your shots if you’re sliding around a battle area. Plus, you can invest in Nanorelays later on — also in the nervous system — which will increase the effect of Kerenzikov by two seconds. If you’re more of a stealth player, consider the Synaptic Accelerator in this spot instead.

Smart Link

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Smart Link is an essential piece of Cyberware. All it does is allow you to use Smart weapons in Cyberpunk 2077. Smart weapons connect to the user, through their hand, allowing them to use the smart-targeting systems in Smart weapons. Instead of aiming, you can target an enemy and have your projectiles follow them. Smart Link also provides some vital information on your display, including how much remaining ammo you have.

We actually don’t recommend buying Smart Link, however, because you can get it for free. Unless you have some eddies burning a hole in your pocket, wait until Act 2 to finish “The Gig” side job. You’ll get this side job in Act 1 automatically, with vague instructions about waiting for lockdown to end. In Act 2, the instructions are simply to collect a reward.

That reward is the Tyger Claws Dermal Imprint tattoo, which does the exact same thing as Smart Link, except it’s free.

Titanium Bones

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Cyberpunk 2077 uses a weight mechanic for managing inventory, and if you scrounge for healing items, weapons, mods, and attachments, you’ll become overburdened quickly. Titanium Bones simply increases your carrying capacity, allowing you to stock up on items during main or side jobs without your movement speed slowing to a crawl.

The common version of Titanium bones increases carrying capacity by 20% at the cost of 1,000 eurodollars. We’d recommend springing for the uncommon version, which doubles carrying capacity (bringing the total increase to 40%) at the cost of 500 more eurodollars.

Gorilla Arms

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There are a few pieces of arm Cyberware, but they all do essentially the same thing: Increase damage. They’re all very expensive, so choosing the arm mod you want to pick up first is essential. The Mantis Blades are awesome, and the Projectile Launch System is helpful for dealing with large groups of enemies, but we’re going to recommend Gorilla Arms instead.

Gorilla Arms gives you bonus damage in hand-to-hand combat, and it adds a chance to inflict your enemies with the bleeding status effect. We’re recommending it, however, because Gorilla Arms has some utility outside of combat. In addition to the bonus damage, Gorilla Arms also lets you force open locked doors and rip turrets from their bases. The other arm mods are flashier, and if you prefer a lot of combat, you should pick them up. However, Gorilla Arms provides a lot more utility, especially when eddies are tight in the early game.

Reinforced Tendons

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Although we didn’t order this list, there’s a reason Reinforced Tendons is last. It’s a great piece of Cyberware, simply allowing you to perform a double jump. At 45,000 eurodollars, however, it’s one of most expensive mods available in Cyberpunk 2077 (nearly twice the price of Gorilla Arms, even). Reinforced Tendons should be the last first piece of Cyberware you pick up in Cyberpunk 2077. 

The mods above will serve you well in the early game, and they’re cheap, so you can install a few between jobs. You’ll need to save up for Reinforced Tendons, but the price is worth it. Double-jumping makes traversing the world of Night City a lot easier, and it opens up different avenues for reaching your destination. You’ll just want to make sure you have plenty of eddies lined up before getting it installed.

Editors' Recommendations

Jacob Roach
Senior Staff Writer, Computing
Jacob Roach is a writer covering computing and gaming at Digital Trends. After realizing Crysis wouldn't run on a laptop, he…
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