It has officially been a year since one of the most notoriously expensive video games to produce hit shelves and disappointed fans with its broken functionality everywhere. I am talking, of course, about Cyberpunk 2077.
Cyberpunk takes place in Night City, a fictionalized cyber dystopia in the future of the United States, and was advertised with so much hype it was destined to fail when it came out.
But in one area it certainly did please fans.
Having sex with a Keanu Reeves avatar in-game. And you know who is absolutely thrilled about that?
The modding of the game to switch Reeves' avatar with one of the in-game sex-workers became so widespread and popular it was forced to an end by developer CD Projekt due to legal concerns.
"When making fan content, creators have to make sure they've got permission from all the concerned parties (which might be people other than CD Projekt Red)" they said, in an explanation last January as to why they removed the mod.
"For the characters we've invented for the game, we broadly permit you to tweak the game at will and just have fun."
"When it comes to models of real people whom we've asked to participate in the game, we kindly ask you to refrain from using them in any situation that might be found offensive if you don't have their explicit permission."
Though Reeves may not have direct influence over whether players can continue modding him into the game to have sex, he certainly made a compelling case for it.
“Think of how much money is in porn, right? So you could not even have to be there and people could have digital sex with your digital avatar."
“What’s it called right now, For Members Only? [OnlyFans]… You could do a whole thing. Oh my god, then you get the suit that’s probably made in Sweden or some German thing, then you’ve got the VR thing."
"Then they’ve got the data on you with your arousal metrics…”
Meanwhile, in the year that has passed, Cyberpunk 2077 has definitely fixed some of its broken functionality, but is under scrutiny for several social faux pas—including transphobia.
And if Reeves' version of a digital-avatar-sex industry does come about, it seems unlikely Cyberpunk 2077 will be its genesis.