There are a lot of ways to play Cyberpunk 2077. Players can build V a whole bunch of different ways, with tons of Perks, weapons, or combat styles to choose from.
But, funnily enough, the build that so many people are building for, in a game about futuristic weaponry/technology, is a melee build where they punch people or hit them with sticks. So, to help people out, here are some great tips for getting any variety of melee builds done and ready to go.
Pick A Path Early
First and foremost, before buying any items, investing in any attributes, or picking up a single perk, players should figure out if they’re going Blunt Weapons or Blades. The builds for Street Brawlers or Blade Users are incredibly different, so it’s sort of an immediate “pick a path” scenario.
Find The Arm Cyberware Of Choice
Let’s be fair, V can get through the entire game as a melee character without even touching the Arm Cyberware, but what fun is there in that? To be honest, the Arm modifications are the best part of the whole Cyberware system, simply because they’re all broken in their own ways. The Monowire and Projectile Launch system are great (even overpowered, with some exploits), but Gorilla Arms or Mantis Blades are obviously the way to go for melee builds. And, luckily, there are some Mantis Blades that can be found insanely early!
Collect Some Support Cyberware
Equally as important to the Mantis Blades/Gorilla Arms are the support Cyberware, pieces of tech that will help V survive the onslaught of bullets coming their way while they run up and punch/slash their opponents face off. Here’s a quick list of a few parts people should be on the lookout for:
- Subdermal Armor: Dr. Chrome, the Ripperdoc in Watson, has the Legendary variant
- Leg Cyberware: Whether it’s the Fortified Ankles or the Reinforced Tendons, these are great for closing the distance to enemies quicker.
- Threat Detector Mod: This is a Mod for the Optics Slot, and it’s insanely useful primarily because it makes all weapons non-lethal, which inadvertently will disable all those kill animations that V gets stuck in while slicing people to bits.
- Synaptic Accelerator or Kerenzikov: Time dilation Cyberware, useful for getting multiple hits/slices in while the enemy slowly pulls the trigger.
And that’s just to name a few of the more obvious support modifications, there are tons more to discover and explore within Cyberpunk 2077.
Either Go For Armor Or Go For Evasion
There are certain keywords to look out for in each build. For Blunt Weapons players should really grab any mod or Perk that affects Stun/Burn damage, while Bladed Weapons are all about Bleeding, Critical, or Chemical Damage. There are plenty of skills in the Cold Blood, Stealth, Athletics, Blades, or Street Brawler trees that deal with these keywords as well, so look out for those.
Build Up Skill Points, Or Put Some Eddies Away For A Respec
The way Cyberpunk’s Perk & Attribute system is built makes it seem like it’s intended for respecs. Yet, players can’t change their attribute point allocation at any point in the game, and the Skill Point respec costs a whopping 100,000 eddies. But, believe us, there are some skills that players will grab early in the Street Brawler or Blades trees that won’t be nearly as useful late game. So, players should prepare early on and dedicate themselves to saving up their Perk Points for the most important Perks need them, or save up 100,000 Eddies in advance so they can respec when it seems most appropriate.
Pick An Elemental Type, Preferably Thermal Or Chemical
Using a bat might seem like enough for a melee build, and in some cases, it’s a bit too much. But, players who want to maximize their damage potential with a melee build should absolutely look into investing in Perks that buff Burn or Poison damage, such as Burn Baby Burn or Neurotoxin. The DoT from Burn ticks especially quickly so it’ll help take an opponent down in between punches, while Poison is non-lethal and can inflict debuffs on the opponent when they’re afflicted with it if V gets the right Perks. Both Gorilla Arms and Mantis Blades have mods that change their default damage type, so it’s easy enough to build with these elements in mind.
Berserk May Seem Tailored For Melee, But Quickhacks Are More Convenient
From the way it works mechanically, it might seem obvious that the Berserk Cyberware is better for Melee builds. And, to be fair, it is pretty good for them. But, what’s actually much more useful is a Cyberdeck loaded up with Crowd Control Quickhacks such as Reboot Optics, Weapon Glitch, or even just Whistle. It takes a few levels and items for a Melee Build to actually become usable in Cyberpunk, so being able to disable enemies from afar is crucially important in the early game especially.
Grenades Are Your Friend
Along the same line of thinking as the Quickhack advice, build up a steady collection of non-damaging utility grenades like the X-22 Flashbangs or the Recon Grenades. Anything that gives V more info to work with or stops the enemy from running around and peppering V with bullets will be handy for a melee build, and these grenades do exactly that. Simply chuck one into a room, then sprint on in there & knock everyone out before they recover.
Grab The Speed Demon Perk
Speed Demon is a very fun Perk, not just because it has a cool name, but because it rewards players for going fast. Basically, the faster V is, the more damage they’ll do. It’s not like V is running around at full spring while throwing punches or slashing around, but they are usually moving around a bit rather than standing still like they would be shooting a gun.
So, no matter what, players will get some extra damage from this Perk, and it becomes even better with Cyberware like the Synaptic Accelerator or Kerenzikov, as these basically turn V into Dio from JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure and lets them decimate enemies within the frozen time.
Make Use Of All Those Weapon Slots
As a last piece of advice, don’t go 100% into melee. That might seem like odd advice for a guide that’s trying to help people achieve their perfect Melee build, but it’s true. Some games allow the player to fully commit to one source of damage, while other games only allow it up to a certain extent. Cyberpunk 2077 is the second example, letting players use whatever weapons they want, but forcing them to use guns during chase scenes or by throwing enemies at them that fly around out of melee range. So, a good rule of thumb for the three equip slots V has but won’t be using in a melee build, is to use 1 for a Melee Weapon backup to the Arm Cyberware, 1 for ranged damage against faraway enemies, and 1 for a stealth weapon (just as a precaution).
NEXT: Cyberpunk 2077: 5 Ways The Game Reminds Us Of The Witcher (& 5 Ways It’s Totally Unique)
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