Cyberpunk 2077, I Want My Knives Back
Everyone’s talking about the bugs, but what about the knife mechanics?
A knife to the eye doesn’t make the world blind. But it sure does hurt. It’s no surprise that video games have often relied on the edge of a blade to let players drop a world of hurt on their foes. From Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2’s roaring finale to Assassin’s Creed titles employing a wide arsenal of throwing knives, it’s a given that the (arguably) biggest title of the year grants you the ability to shred foes from afar.
I’m not going to go into the bugs that need to be fixed and quality-of-life improvement demands that have the Cyberpunk 2077 subreddit up in arms. It is by no means a perfect game but I’ve still had a great time so far in its immersive world, clocking a few dozen hours in neon-dripping Night City alone. Eager to test out the effects of my cybernetic puberty, I decided to slot a point into the Dagger Dealer skill. Big mistake.
The target was ready. So was my blade. An unfortunate gang member had to contend with being blinded by both a quickhack and an epic-rarity Chef’s Knife. If that isn’t the best dystopian chef’s kiss of an encounter, I don’t know what is. It was going great until I tried dislodging the blade from the fallen Maelstrom gangster. Alas, the icing on the cake turned out to be futuristic shaving cream. I couldn't find the bloody knife.
Sure, some Assassin’s Creed games also have the issue of not allowing thrown knives to be picked up. But in those games, it’s ridiculously easy to grab some gear, either from vendors or straight-up looting. In Cyberpunk 2077, they can cost thousands of eddies each. Getting a knife from an unlucky mobster you mowed down doesn’t happen often enough to make knife throwing viable. And as melee weapons, they preach violence pretty well which makes this omission stand out even more. And don’t get me started on equipping knives from the inventory screen, one at a time.
In a game that relies heavily on character progression, losing a point in a pointless skill is rather irksome. What’s worse is that there is another skill that lets you deal more damage with throwing knives. If you’re willing to throw money at your foes to silence them, be my guest. Games have been getting knives right for ages so Cyberpunk 2077’s bizarre implementation isn’t exactly exempt from complaints.
I still see the problem as something that an update can resolve. Just adding a satchel with a couple of disposable knives would work too. They could have different rarities and effects that spice up the experience. Flaming knives would be wild. But until then, I’m going to stick with an older save. Time travel has its perks. I suppose I’ll stick to using knives only when I’m violating social distancing protocol.