First look at Cyberpunk 2077’s new expansion

CD Projekt Red are a publicly listed company and thus not a true indie outfit, but they make and publish their own games themselves and that’s indie enough for us. What’s more, a teaser trailer for Cyberpunk 2077’s first expansion ‘Phantom Liberty’ has just been released;

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The New United States of America is an exciting faction that’ll be fascinating to get to grips with. In universe NUSA is a husk of what the USA is today as it publicly pours most of its financial resources into Militech while having sold off virtually all of its public services to various other corporations. Lead by Rosalind Myers (the character we can assume V pledges her allegiance to in the trailer) and coming off the back of a vicious civil war with the rebellious ‘Free States’ that ends 7 years before the events of the game, NUSA tucked their tails and ran from Night City after Arasaka invaded by parking a supercarrier packing state of the art military hardware on their lawn. By 2077 the Free States and NUSA are back at each other’s throats, teetering on the brink of all out war again. Could Myers be hiring V to assassinate key people from the Free States who are in town to stock up on Arasaka hardware? Or maybe she’s got V doing some groundwork as the prelude to a re-invasion of Night City? Either way, Johnny clearly doesn’t like what’s going down, and he’s got a pretty good nose for trouble by now.

Cyberpunk 2077's Game
Image Credit: CD Projekt Red

There’s further questions for us to raise here too – will Phantom Liberty will be a standalone, modular addition to the game in a new area or whether it will be grafted into existing areas of Night City? Its also not yet clear where the expansion fits into the story – if V is still alive and Johnny Silverhand is still in your head, then the events could occur before the main questline’s conclusion and might possibly hint at the inclusion of New Game + for returning players with built out characters ready to go.

There’s also the matter of cut content being reintroduced, following a trend of some of it cropping up in previous patches. For example; the optical camo cyberware upgrade that was added in Patch 1.3, or the additional apartments V could own in Patch 1.5. Things that could potentially be coming could include making use of the Orbital Air Space Center on Del Coronado Bay, a working train system, being able to shoot while driving motorcycles and cars, or being able to use the Mantis Blades to climb on vertical surfaces. We live in hope.

Cyberpunk 2077's Game
Image Credit: CD Projekt Red

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Whatever happens one thing is for sure – last gen consoles aren’t getting the update. CD Projekt Red’s very damaging and public problems with the last gen version of the game are being left behind for good which, frankly, is relieving news. The fact that those versions of the game were made at all after the studio’s bold and ultimately right decision to abandon the Xbox 360 and PS3 for the Xbox One and PS4 while developing the Witcher 3 is still, and will remain a mystery. Finally letting go of those hardware limitations might be exactly what the game needs to stage a cross-generational comeback and restore some much needed polish to both CP2077 and CD Projekt Red’s tarnished reputation.

Cyberpunk 2077's Game
Image credit: CD Projekt Red

Finishing on a personal note – after sinking over 80 hours into CP2077 when it first released in 2019 and enjoying a largely bug free playthrough of the main story that Mike Pondsmith did an incredible job of helping to craft, I’ve been hungry for a proper storied expansion to the game outside of the trickle of bug fixes and tweaks, and can’t wait to learn more as we closer to the eventual release date in 2023. Stick with us, we’ll be reporting on this alongside as many stories as we possibly can in the meantime.