Cyberpunk 2077 city imagery
Image Source: CD Projekt Red

Cyberpunk 2077 2.0 Skill Progression Explained

Skills to pay the bills.

Update 2.0 introduces plenty of new features, but it mostly serves as a complete remodeling of the game’s underlying systems. That doesn’t mean the changes are boring, though. For example, the overhauled skill progression system is an awesome game-changer. Skills are somewhat hidden in the menus of Cyberpunk 2077, but their function and 2.0 changes are absolutely worth exploring.

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This guide will take you through everything you need to know about Cyberpunk 2077 2.0 skill progression.

Breakdown of Cyberpunk 2077 2.0 Skill Progression

Let’s start off with the basics. First, skills have been divided into five broad categories: Headhunter, Netrunner, Shinobi, Solo, and Engineer.

skill level cap in cyberpunk 2077
Image Source: CD Projekt Red via Twinfinite

Each skill category provides V passive buffs and occasional abilities tied to each theme. For example, leveling up the Headhunter skill rewards V with an enhanced headshot crit rate and longer focus using scopes.

To reap rewards, V must simply perform functions related to each of the themed skills. Hacking stuff grants some experience points to Netrunning, for example. Sound familiar? It’s essentially the ‘use it to level it’ system that Bethesda games like The Elder Scrolls employ.

Each skill has a level cap of 60 and grants rewards every five levels.

New Skill System Versus the Old

In contrast, the skill system prior to update 2.0 seamlessly merged skills and perks. You still earned experience by performing related actions, but that experience all went into unlocking perks within the pertinent skill tree.

In summary, Cyberpunk 2077’s 2.0 skill progression frees up the perks to be less passive and more ability-based. It’s great to have a separation between passive buffs and active buffs/abilities because V can be built more purposefully now. The min-maxer in me is jumping for joy right now.

Speaking of min-max specialization, here’s how to level up each of the five new skill categories.

Leveling Up Headhunter Skill

aiming for headshot headhunter skill
Image Source: CD Projekt Red via Twinfinite

Performing headshots using any weapon of choice grants the most Headhunter experience points. Shooting targets in general will offer points in this skill too, though they’re pennies compared to the exp gained from headshots.

All Headhunter Skill Rewards:

Rank 5: Decreases Visibility to Enemies by 10%.
Rank 10: 10% Headshot Damage and 10% Damage Against Vulnerabilities
Rank 15: +1 Perk Point
Rank 20: No Weapon Sway When Crouched
Rank 25: Decreases Visibility to Enemies by 10%
Rank 30: 15% Headshot Damage and 15% Damage Against Vulnerabilities
Rank 35: Gain a perk point
Rank 40: Optical Camo Is Active While Grappling Enemies
Rank 45: Decreases Recovery Time After a Throw by 30%
Rank 50: 30% Faster When Crouch Walking and Crouch Sprinting
Rank 55: Damage Bonus From Being Undetected Outside of Combat Persist for 3 Seconds After Entering Combat.
Rank 60: 15% Optical Camo Charge when Neutralizing an Enemy in One of the Following Ways: During Focus Mode, During Deadeye Mode, With a Thrown Weapon.

Leveling Up Netrunner Skill

hacking in cyberpunk
Image Source: CD Projekt Red via Twinfinite

Hacking everything you see will grant you oodles of Netrunner skill experience points. Directly quickhacking enemies gives the best exp, but hacking silly objects like vending machines constantly does the job just fine too!

All Netrunner Skill Rewards:

Rank 5: Increases RAM Recovery Rate by 5%
Rank 10: Increases RAM by 1
Rank 15: +1 Perk Point
Rank 20: +20% Lock-On Range With Smart Weapons
Rank 25: Increases RAM Recovery Rate by 5%
Rank 30: Increases RAM by 1
Rank 35: +1 Perk Point
Rank 40: -20% RAM Cost For Quickhacks Used on Devices and Vehicles
Rank 45: +15% Duration For Control and Convert Quickhacks. +5% Damage With Combat Quickhacks.
Rank 50: +40% Duration For Overclock
Rank 55: -10% Health Loss From Using Quickhacks During Overclock.
Rank 60: When Active, Overlock Now Reveals Enemies Within 10 meters and Allows You To Quickhack Non-Netrunner Enemies Through Cover

Leveling Up Shinobi Skill

using katana to level up shinobi skill
Image Source: CD Projekt Red via Twinfinite

Performing acrobatic feats such as sprinting, dodging, and sliding grants Shinobi skill points. Just run around jumping all over the place like a maniac and you’ll slowly level this skill up. The best way to earn Shinobi points is by using katanas and other close-range weaponry.

All Shinobi Skill Rewards:

Rank 5: Increases Movement Speed by 5%
Rank 10: -5% Stamina Cost From Dodging and Dashing
Rank 15: +1 Perk Point
Rank 20: Better accuracy after dodging or dashing
Rank 25: Increased Accuracy For a Short Time After Dodging and Dashing
Rank 30: Decreased stamina cost for dodging and dashing
Rank 35: +1 Perk Point
Rank 40: Increased Mitigation Chance The Faster You Move
Rank 45: +25 Damage With Fast Attacks
Rank 50: Air Dashing and Sliding Automatically Reload 20% of Your Equipped Weapon
Rank 55: When Attacking From Midair or While Time Is Slowed, Low Stamina Does Not Affect Ranged Accuracy or Melee Attack Speed
Rank 60: When Sandevistan is Active: +40 Crit Chance and No Stamina Cost For Any Type of Movement

Leveling Up Solo Skill

punching to level up solo skill
Image Source: CD Projekt Red via Twinfinite

Solo is the other close-range skill V can focus on. Rather than take the sharp and deadly approach, Solos use brawn and sheer power. Heavy weaponry like shotguns and LMGs are key to leveling up Solo. In addition, V can go full-on monk using fists. Blunt melee weapons and Gorilla Arms are fantastic ways to earn Solo experience points.

All Solo Skill Rewards:

Rank 5: Increases Carrying Capacity by 50
Rank 10: Increases Health by 10
Rank 15: +1 Perk Point
Rank 20: Fists and Gorilla Arms Have: +20% Damage and +20% Attack Speed. Fists also have a Chance to Apply Bleeding.
Rank 25: Increases Carrying Capacity by 100
Rank 30: Increases Health by 15
Rank 35: +1 Perk Point
Rank 40: +10% Crit Chance Against Enemies Within 5 meters
Rank 45: +25% Damage With Strong Attacks and Quick Melee Attacks
Rank 50: +25 Health After Performing a Finisher
Rank 55: When Adrenaline Rush is Active, Adrenaline Decays 50% Slower and Cannot Decay Below 10%
Rank 60: When Berserk Is Active: +30% Enemy Health Threshold to Perform Finishers, +50% Health From Performing Finishers, and +30% Bersker Duration

Leveling Up Engineering Skill

crafting a quickhack in cyberpunk
Image Source: CD Projekt Red via Twinfinite

Here’s something for the pacifists in Night City. Engineering experience points are cool because you don’t even need to fight to level it up. Crafting grants good exp gains in Engineering. The best engineering method for most players will be using smart weapons, ricochet shots, elemental damage, and grenades.

All Engineering Skill Rewards

Rank 5: Increases Armor by 15
Rank 10: Increases Cyberware Capacity by 5
Rank 15: +1 Perk Point
Rank 20: +10 Grenade Damage and Explosion Radius
Rank 25: Increases Armor by 25
Rank 30: Increases Cyberware Capacity by 10
Rank 35: +1 Perk Point
Rank 40: Increased Shock Chance From Charging a Tech Weapon or Electric Baton
Rank 45: +15% Item Health Effectiveness
Rank 50: +30% To All Cyberware Stat Modifiers
Rank 55: 10% Damage With Bolt Shots and +40% Burn Chance With Bolt Shots. Chain Lightning Now Sets Enemies on Fire.
Rank 60: When Fury is Active, You Occasionally Release an EMP Blast

So, that’s all the fundamentals regarding Cyberpunk 2077 2.0 skill progression. Cyberpunk 2077 is even more fun when one understands the underlying systems behind its madness. And thanks to Update 2.0, these systems are more engaging and rewarding than ever before. Check out Twinfinite’s extensive Cyberpunk 2077 coverage, including the expansion Phantom Liberty.


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Author
Matthew Carmosino
Matthew Carmosino is a freelance writer for Twinfinite. He started gaming in the mid-90s where his love for SquareSoft RPGs like Chrono Trigger changed him forever. Matthew has been working in the game industry for two years covering everything from story-rich RPGs to puzzle-platformers. Listening to piano music on a rainy day is his idea of a really good time, which probably explains his unnatural tolerance for level-grinding.