CD Projekt Red’s upcoming sci-fi epic Cyberpunk 2077 was one of the standout games of the E3 2019 conference, even if you forget about Keanu Reeve’s fantastic cameo. And yet, a post-E3 conference Cyberpunk announcement has only gone and elevated hype to the next level – just as long as you’re a PC gamer.
Nvidia and CD Projekt Red simultaneously announced that Cyberpunk 2077 will support real-time ray tracing when played with an RTX graphics card. This will add even more realism to the already stunning futuristic metropolis, with screenshots showing brightly lit neon adverts reflected on the floor for a jaw-dropping effect.
Don’t know what real-time ray tracing is? This is a revolutionary graphics technique that sees lighting effects displayed more realistically, resulting in dazzling reflections on shiny surfaces, mirrors and bodies of water.
Related: What is ray tracing?
Head of Studio at CD Projekt Red, Adam Badowski, said, “Ray tracing allows us to realistically portray how light behaves in a crowded urban environment.”
“Thanks to this technology, we can add another layer of depth and verticality to the already impressive megacity the game takes place in.”
There are other graphics cards that can also technically capable of real-time ray tracing, including Nvidia’s own GTX series, but since they lack the required Tensor Cores, the visuals will look so poor that the performance hit you get when activating the DXR feature won’t be worth the sacrifice. It’s RTX or nothing as long as we’re concerned.
Related: Cyberpunk 2077
Console fans shouldn’t despair too much though, as since the PS5 and Xbox 2 (aka Project Scarlett) are both confirmed to support real-time ray tracing, we’re banking on CD Projekt Red eventually releasing a version of Cyberpunk 2077 that will be optimised for the next-gen hardware.
PC gamers will no doubt be treated to the technology sooner though. That said, there’s no confirmation that real-time ray tracing will be available right from launch, although we are hopeful considering Cyberpunk doesn’t release until 16 April 2020.
Will you be buying Cyberpunk on PC to make use of ray tracing? Let us know @TrustedReviews on Twitter