While there’s no shortage of Cyberpunk 2077 mods out there, many of that game’s early mods were dedicated to addressing the base experience’s many problems. Now that Cyberpunk 2077 is (mostly) fixed, though, modders are allowing themselves to get a little more creative. In fact, one of Cyberpunk 2077‘s best mods lets you recreate one of the coolest features from Netflix’s Edgerunners anime series: the ability to succumb to Cyberpsychosis.
For those who don’t know, Cyberpsychosis is a kind of mental disease triggered by the cybernetic augmentations found throughout the Cyberpunk universe. The nature of the disease is fairly complicated, but the basic idea is that someone can gradually lose their mind (and humanity) by installing too many augmentations. The speed at which that disease takes over can vary based on the individual’s mental state and the nature of the augmentations themselves, but the end result is usually the same: the victim begins to gradually “forget” their humanity. Some simply forget how to survive at that point, while others turn their sudden lack of moral boundaries into an excuse to go on rampages and crime sprees. So far as that last part goes, you have to remember that the Cyberpsychosis victim is now geared to the teeth with high-tech augmentations. They are, to say the least, quite dangerous.
Anyone who watched Netflix’s Cyberpunk: Edgerunners anime series will certainly be able to tell you how deeply someone can succumb to the effects of Cyberpsychosis. Without diving too deep into spoilers, we watch a major character on that show demonstrate how bad Cyberpsychosis can be for both the victim and those who are unfortunate enough to get in their way. In that particular instance, the victim’s belief that they were immune to (or above) the effects of the disease made their condition that much worse.
Of course, Edgerunners didn’t invent the concept of Cyberpsychosis. Versions of the Cyberpunk tabletop RPG required players to consider the consequences of Cyberpsychosis at all times, which is a big part of the reason why Cyberpunk 2077 players were disappointed to learn that the base game didn’t include a similar feature. Augmentations without consequences may result in hilariously broken character builds, but consequence-free augmentations water down the twisted morality at the heart of the Cyberpunk experience.
Well, modder DJ_Kovrik’s “Wannabe Edgerunner” mod looks to address that design oversight. As noted above, it adds a simple Cyberpsychosis mechanic to Cyberpunk 2077. That mechanic comes with a “Humanity” meter that gradually drops as you install more and more augmentations (or simply more intense augmentations). Killing innocents and performing other immoral actions can also make that meter drop. Anyone familiar with morality systems in other video games will recognize some of the basics of the Cyberpsychosis mechanic, but this mod takes that classic concept in some fascinating new directions unique to the Cyberpunk 2077 experience.
For instance, your character’s appearance doesn’t simply change as you lose your humanity. Instead, they’ll start seeing “glitches” in the world that aren’t really there. They’ll also notice that some of their key stats (such as their critical strike chance) are being altered outside of their control. Those early stages of Cyberpsychosis can be “cured” by resting and keeping your humanity in check, but anyone who chooses to dive deeper into the disease will watch their condition gradually become worse. Players who choose to succumb to late-stage Cyberpsychosis will start seeing glitches everywhere and will even be relentlessly pursued by law enforcement. However, they will also receive massive buffs to some of their key combat stats that will turn them into the machine they always wanted to be.
The addition of that mechanic is undeniably impressive, but what really makes this mod stand out is the thought that went into how even a basic Cyberpsychosis mechanic would affect the rest of the Cyberpunk 2077 experience. After all, installing augmentations with no threat of the disease is kind of boring, but so is choosing to not install any augmentations out of fear of the same disease. That’s why more expensive augmentations in Cyberpunk 2077 carry a lower risk of Cyberpsychosis, whereas budget mods from back alley dealers are generally more dangerous. Players can also temporarily offset the Cyberpsychosis effect by utilizing neuroblocker injections that at least temporarily stall the effects of the disease.
I highly recommend this mod to anyone playing Cyberpunk 2077 on the PC. While some kind of Cyberpsychosis mechanic really should have been in the game in the first place (add it to that list of the game’s missing features), this mod at least lets you get a taste of how that mechanic results in more complicated and generally more interesting role-playing experience. It’s also a must-have mod for anyone looking to play Cyberpunk 2077 like they’re one of their favorite Edgerunners characters.