Cyberpunk 2077 Phantom Liberty Firestarter guide: Should you side with Reed or Songbird
During the Firestarter mission of Cyberpunk 2077, you have two choices: Side with Reed or Songbird. Making this choice irrevocably changes the game - unless you have a save state from before this point in the game, at any rate. You’ll be locked into a new path, each one with its own missions, choices, and endings.
Thankfully, even if you have already agreed to side with Songbird or Reed in earlier parts of Cyberpunk 2077 Phantom Liberty, you can change your mind at this moment. Once you do, though, there’s no going back.
What happens if you side with Reed instead of Songbird in Cyberpunk 2077 Phantom Liberty?
If you choose Solomon Reed instead of Songbird in Cyberpunk 2077, Alex loses her life. Kurt Hansen gets alerted to your ruse, and Song So Mi handles you. While that happens, Kurt kills Alex, and you have to escape the stadium alone.
You’ll also have to battle Kurt Hansen, but the positive side there is you can unlock a trio of iconic weapons as a result: Bald Eagle (Power Revolver), Wild Dog (Power Submachine Gun), and Fang (Knife).
After escaping the Stadium, you and Reed will take off in his car, only to watch Songbird get taken away. This leads to two more missions:
- Black Steel in the House of Chaos
- Somewhat Damaged
These missions are much harder than the ones you do for Songbird. In particular, Somewhat Damaged has a powerful robot hunting you, and if it tracks you down, it’s instant death. You can also find an amazing iconic weapon (Erebus) and an incredibly powerful quickhack (Blackwall) in this Cyberpunk 2077 route.
Your endings will involve giving Song So Mi the one thing she needs and wants - peace. Without going into too many spoilers, this is where two of the ending trophies come from. It’s an incredibly sad ending to the game, like most of them in this expansion.
However, if you choose to save Songbird, you will still get a chance to get the "cure" ending. It's only if you save Songbird; otherwise, the president will renege on her deal.
What happens if you side with Songbird in Cyberpunk 2077 Phantom Liberty?
While playing through Cyberpunk 2077 Phantom Liberty for guide and review purposes, all three writers chose the same path: Song So Mi. Choosing this route unlocks three of the ending achievements and arguably the most poignant ending in the game.
Going this route means you betray Solomon Reed, and Kurt Hansen is immediately killed in the confusion.
You and Songbird flee the Stadium together, but Solomon Reed is furious. He points out he’ll do anything to retrieve Song So Mi, and he means it.
This route is interesting in that you can still betray Songbird (at the very end). You have one final mission, The Killing Moon.
Songbird wants to go to the moon, and you can get her there. You’ll sneak through a Spaceport and likely wind up getting into intense gunfights.
In the end, Solomon shows up and is ready to kill you to get Song So Mi. If you choose to kill him, you send the netrunner to space. She doesn’t cure you, and you’re back where you started. After all, she even lied to you all this time.
If you let Solomon have her, you get a chance to be cured of the Relic forever. Doing this completely ends the game and also kills off Silverhand. Otherwise, you can resume playing the game, choose not to take the route with Reed, and stick by Silverhand’s side while you two try to find another way to resolve the issue.
Which side should you choose?
Frankly, the Songbird endings have more interesting choices. You can pick up some truly remarkable gear by going the Solomon route in Cyberpunk 2077, though. We only found the “New life” ending by siding with Songbird and then betraying her at the very end.
Both routes offer you a leap right back into the main story seamlessly. Your decision depends heavily on what you want out of Cyberpunk 2077. What makes it interesting is that each route also has its own choices to make.
- Solomon Route: Save So Mi, Kill So Mi
- Song So Mi Route: Betray So Mi, Send So Mi to space
The Solomon route will let you have the cure, but only if Song So Mi is saved. Otherwise, there's no chance. Both routes allow for the option, however. If you value finding more powerful gear and finding your own way to a potential cure that won’t cost people their lives, that can be done by betraying Songbird.
If you want the most poetic ending, betray Song So Mi in either route and get the cure. It’s sad, but it’s also a hopeful visual. It’s one that all players should experience at least once.
Ultimately, the choice is up to you. Either way, it will lead to a powerful conclusion, which, depending on your choices, puts you right back where you left off in the regular game’s main story.