The Assault Rifle build has a pure guns blazing focused playstyle in Cyberpunk 2077. Despite having its base in a specific weapon type, it is pretty flexible with secondary weapon options and can be tailored toward a specific playstyle. You can deal excellent front-loaded damage with little to no downtime and clear most of the content even at higher difficulties.
With the 2.0 Update, the biggest changes were seen in the Cyberware and Perks departments. The new perks cater more toward specialized weapons and the Reflexes tree now includes massive boosts for Assault Rifles. The Kerenzikov Cyberware is now limited to ranged weapons only, thankfully having no problems for the ARs.
Additionally, you can now only obtain Armor from your Cyberware which does give you freedom with styling options but now costs Cyberware slots. If you don’t have enough Cyberware you will have to pick up health regen from Body perks for sustainability.
If you are not one to shy away from fighting head-on and are not a fan of gameplay gimmicks, then we have covered with this 2.0 Assault Rifle build in Cyberpunk 2077.
Required Attribute Points
Reflexes form the core of this build and it is not only for the maneuverability it provides. You can also grab perks that increase your weapon proficiency with Assault Rifles and SMGs which make it an irreplaceable choice. This is why we recommend maxing it out to 20 first.
The 2.0 Assault Rifle build is not possible without great Cyberware investment and there is no better place to improve this than investing in Technical Ability. It is a late-game skill tree so you can invest somewhere else and then reset your attributes to grab the perks here. For maximum benefits, you should allocate 20 Attribute points towards it.
The Body is one of the best starting attributes and adds the necessary sustainability to your build with its Health and regen efficiency perks. We recommend at least investing 15 points here.
Cool and Intelligence are dump stats here and you can invest the remaining points wherever you like. If Hacking is your thing then invest in Intelligence and if you want to go undercover with pistols then go with Cool.
The Phantom Liberty DLC provides you with 10 additional Attribute points so you will have even more freedom with which perks you can grab.
Recommended Perks and Relics
The Reflexes tree has the best perks for your Assault Rifle build in Cyberpunk 2077 but it does not make all of the build. Body and Technical Ability help glue and polish the skills to bring the whole build together.
Best Perks: Sharpshooter, Salt in the Wound, Air Dash, Aerial Combat, Can’t Touch This
This tree is related to Assault Rifles and SMGs, their Crit hits, stamina and recoil reduction, and their Damage, range, and accuracy improvements. You will need it to make your Assault build in Cyberpunk 2077 pack some punch.
This tree makes agile with more flexible maneuvering. You get Dash and Air Dash with the ability to perform various actions like reloading and shooting during the animation. You also get Damage Mitigation for added security in your movements.
This tree is all about Blade upgrades so if you are planning to bring out your best Katanas for a spin, then this is the place to go.
Best Perks: License To Chrome, Edgerunner, Cyborg, Extended Warranty, Driver Update
The first Tree enhances the range, damage, radius, and recharging speed of your explosives. Grenades pair exceptionally well with the 2.0 Assault Rifle build so we recommend grabbing a few if you have points to spare.
This tree takes your Cyberware to the next level with cooldown reductions, status modifiers, increased capacity, and Cyberware effects. This is the place to start if you are a beginner.
It is all about Tech weapon upgrades by adding new additional skills to them like chain lightning that can bounce between enemies.
Best Perks: Adrenaline Rush, Pain Killer, Unstoppable Force, Calm Mind, Speed Junkie
This tree makes your shotguns and LMGs a force to be reckoned with. You can get great damage boosts, recoil and reload speed reductions and even immunity to movement speed penalties.
The middle Tree is all about Health, increasing your Max HP, and improving the efficiency, rate, and amount of Health regenerated. You can also get immunity to non-damaging status effects like Knockback and Blinding.
Unless you are planning to use a Blunt Weapon with your Assault Rifle build, you can ignore this tree.
Best Relics: Vulnerability Analytics with Machine Learning
The best Relic for your Assault Rifle 2.0 build in Cyberpunk 2077 is Vulnerability Analytics with Machine Learning. Vulnerability Analytics exposes weak points in enemies’ Cyberware and armor called Vulnerabilities. Hitting these Vulnerabilities, provides a 100% Crit Chance, Armor Penetration, weakspot damage bonuses, and releases a 3m ranged EMP blast.
The Machine Learning relic skill further incentivizes these Vulnerabilities by increasing the Crit Damage that can stack up to 5 times. Once these 5 stacks are reached, all effects related to Vulnerabilities are doubled. It also increases the rate and frequency of Vulnerabilities appearing.
The Relic Skill Tree is only accessible with the Phantom Liberty DLC.
Recommended Cyberware Mods
Cyberware forms the foundation of the Assault Rifle build in Cyberpunk 2077 gameplay. Shooting a gun is not enough to survive in the streets of Night City, you will need some useful Cyberware to fight back. Here are the best Cyberware mods you can grab to ensure you make it out alive and victorious.
Newton Module and Axolotl greatly reduce the cooldown of all Cyberware after you neutralize an enemy.
Mechatronic Core increases damage against machines like drones, robots, and mechs
Arms Cyberware is not required with Assault Rifle build but if you do want something, any of the ones available in Cyberpunk 2077 will work.
Spring Joints increase Mitigation Strength.
Para Bellum increases your Armor by a certain percentage
Bionic Joint also increases your Armor but by a flat number.
Alternatively, you can also use Epimorphic Skeleton with your 2.0 Assault Rifle build if you don’t have any of the aforementioned cyberwares.
Neofiber greatly increases your Damage Mitigation Strength and Chance.
Kerenzikov dilates time and allows you to deal with ranged attacks while dodging, sliding, or dashing.
Proxishield increases Armor and reduces the damage taken in a 6m radius.
Painducer converts a large portion of incoming damage into damage-over-time
Shock-In-Awe gives you a chance of electroshock that deals massive damage when you take damage.
Militech “Apogee” Sandevistan can be activated and deactivated but has a transitioning delay. Upon activation, it slows down time by 85% and increases Headshot Damage Multiplier, Crit Chance, and Crit Damage. If you neutralize an enemy while it is active, it increases your Stamina and its own duration.
Kiroshi “The Oracle” Optics highlight enemies, cameras, traps, and turrets within a certain radius while scanning. It also bumps zoom levels to 10x.
If you have the Phantom Liberty DLC, you should pick Kiroshi “The Cockatrice” Optics for your 2.0 Assault Rifle build as it increases Crit Chance, a stat difficult to find in Cyberpunk 2077.
Shock Absorber greatly reduces recoil and increases headshot and weakspot damage.
Ballistic Coprocessor is a great alternative if you are using weapons with ricocheting bullets.
Blood Pump heals a great percentage of your Health instantly with small periodic heals over the next 6 seconds
Threatevac increases your movement speed when you fall below half health.
Bio monitor and Heal-on-Kill are excellent Threatevac alternatives.
Reinforced Tendons allow you to perform a second jump mid-air.
The Assault Rifle build is centered around, well, Assault Rifles but with so many options available in Cyberpunk 2077 it is not easy to make a decision. This is why we have listed a few of the best weapons you can grab in both the base game and Phantom Liberty DLC.
In Phantom Liberty
Hawk is a Power Assault Rifle with ricocheting bullets, amazing handling, and fast reload speed. It has the ability to mark enemies which makes them slower and take increased damage. With its 175% Headshot Damage Multiplier and 25% Armor Penetration, it takes out enemies in a few seconds.
Carmen is a Power Assault Rifle that has one of the best weapon handling in the game. You also get increased damage based on your movement speed with a chance to inflict Bleed onto enemies. The high damage output, 100% Headshot Damage Multiplier, and 50% Armor Penetration make it an excellent fit for your Assault Rifle build.
Hercules 3AX is a Smart Assault Rifle with a 90-round magazine that releases explosive rounds while hip-firing. Along with its high damage output, it has a chance to apply poison to enemies. Poisoned enemies take increased damage and explode when neutralized, leaving an AoE acid puddle on the floor which poisons enemies when they step in it.
In the base game
Moron Labe is a Power Assault Rifle with bullets that can ricochet off surfaces. It has excellent damage output with a high chance of dismembering enemies. When you do so, it increases its own Crit Chance.
Masamune is a Power Assault Rifle that shoots three rounds of ricocheting bullets. These rounds certainly pack a punch with its 125% Headshot Damage Multiplier and 25% Armor Penetration.
Psalm 11:6 is a Power Assault Rifle that can shoot Thermal bullets with its modifier. These Thermal bullets can ricochet and apply the Burn effect to enemies.
SMGs share the same perk tree as the Assault Rifles and pairing them together will help reduce perk points required for upgrades.
How to play the Assault Rifle Build in Cyberpunk 2077
The Assault Rifle build does not have a complicated playstyle like the Netrunner or Stealth builds in Cyberpunk 2077. It is, however, more than just a shooting FPS so here are a few tips to help you master this build.
Activating Sandevistan and Adrenaline Rush before entering combat. The time dilation will allow you to take more accurate shots while the Adrenaline Rush will increase your survivability and damage. This comes in pretty handy if you are about to deal with groups or elite enemies.
Speaking of Sandevistan, we highly recommend going for headshots only while the time is slowed. This is because most of the Assault Rifles have massive Headshot Damage Multipliers which can even one-shot enemies. Neutralizing enemies increases the duration of slowed time, giving you more time to take your shots.
If you do not have your Sandevistan active, use your Kerenzikov by sliding, dodging, or dashing. It is a quicker method and is a lifesaver when you are in a pinch.
Be as aggressive as you can since your Body perks and the circulatory Cyberware like Blood Pump will make sure you stay alive. This does not grant you immunity against death but comes pretty close.