As we reported last year, Cyberpunk 2077 will be one of the few triple-A games that will support real-time Ray Tracing effects at launch. At that time, we knew that CD Projekt RED would be using Ray Tracing for ambient occlusion and diffused illumination. However, NVIDIA has recently revealed all of the Ray Tracing effects that Cyberpunk 2077 will feature.
According to the green team, Cyberpunk 2077 will support Ray-Traced Diffuse Illumination, Ray-Traced Reflections, Ray-Traced Ambient Occlusion and Ray-Traced Shadows.
My guess is that Cyberpunk 2077 will be an RTX showcase when it comes out. From the looks of it, it will be just as good as Control and Metro Exodus.
Now obviously performance will take a big hit when enabling all these Ray Tracing effects. Thankfully, the game will also take advantage of DLSS 2.0. Thus, NVIDIA owners will be able to enable it and enjoy higher framerates without major image losses.
Cyberpunk 2077 Ray Tracing Features
- Ray-Traced Diffuse Illumination. This captures sky radiance as well as emissive lighting from various surfaces, which is difficult to achieve with traditional rendering techniques. When enabled, billboards and other illuminated surfaces and objects will brighten their surroundings with naturally colored lighting. The sun and moon will also realistically illuminate Night City.
- Ray-Traced Reflections. In Cyberpunk 2077, ray-traced reflections are used on all surfaces. These reflections can trace ranges for up to several kilometers, enabling realistic reflections across vast view distances. They are present on both opaque and transparent objects and surfaces to simulate the way light reflects from glossy and metal surfaces by tracing a single bounce of reflection rays against the scene.
- Ray-Traced Ambient Occlusion. Ambient occlusion is a shading and rendering technique used to calculate how exposed each point in a scene is to ambient lighting. This results in the rendering of new AO shadows that ground objects and naturally darken surfaces, objects, and other game elements. In Cyberpunk 2077, ray-traced ambient occlusion can be used with local lights to approximate local shadowing effects where shadows are missing, greatly improving the quality of the ambient occlusion effect.
- Ray-Traced Shadows. Ray tracing enables developers to bring pixel-perfect shadows to games, free from the compromises and limitations of shadow maps. In Cyberpunk 2077, directional shadows from sun and moon light are added to the game, based on the strength of light, scattering of light through clouds, and other factors.
In order to showcase these Ray Tracing effects, NVIDIA released the following screenshots. For bandwidth purposes, we’ve resized them to 1080p. Still, you can find their full 4K versions on NVIDIA’s website.