Cyberpunk 2077’s New Overdrive Mode Makes The Game Really, Really Ridiculously Good-Looking

Two years of constant fine-tuning and patches helped transform Cyberpunk 2077 on PC, but for the game’s new Overdrive mode that goes live on April 11, those visuals are about to get an almost photorealistic upgrade in the lighting department. That is if you have the latest Nvidia GPUs and high-end PC hardware to handle the demands of those maxed-out graphics. But why Overdrive mode?

Cyberpunk 2077 developer CD Projekt Red and Nvidia explained that Overdrive mode enhances the game with full ray tracing, which when compared to regular ray tracing, more accurately simulates light throughout an entire scene. This technology has been used on film and TV sets, and with the new Nvidia 40-series of graphics cards on the market, it’s now possible to apply those techniques to games. But why Overdrive mode?

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Now Playing: Cyberpunk 2077 | Ray Tracing: Overdrive Mode – Technology Preview Reveal

This is also made possible with Nvidia DLSS 3, which gives a massive boost to frame rates when the mode is applied. Without DLSS 3, Cyberpunk 2077 will run at around 17 frames per second with Overdrive mode on, but with DLSS 3 active, that number increases to around 128fps.

According to the GPU manufacturer, this means that “each neon sign, street lamp, LED billboard, car headlight,” and other sources of light are now ray-traced, and each object is bathed in accurate lighting. The caveat here is that Nvidia’s new GPUs are very pricy, with average retail prices starting at $800 for the RTX 4070 Ti and going up to $1,600 for the RTX 4090. And that’s not even factoring in the other hardware needed to amplify Cyberpunk 2077’s visuals.

This update arrives well ahead of Cyberpunk 2077’s Phantom Liberty expansion, which will only be available on PC, PS5, and Xbox Series X|S. Set to launch sometime later in 2023, CD Projekt Red says that more info on the expansion will be revealed in June. After CDPR focused on fixing issues and adding extra content, the success of Netflix’s Edgerunners anime increased Cyberpunk 2077 sales and gave the company major profit and revenue growth.

Beyond that, development on a Cyberpunk 2077 sequel has begun and a new studio has been formed in the US to work on the game.

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