When I saw "levels are gone" I got excited, because I thought maybe it meant CDPR was taking some of our feedback into account.
https://www.ign.com/articles/2019/06/11/cyberpunk-2077-new-gameplay-details-from-the-e3-2019-demoAs we sneak by guards, they all have "18" next to their names – most likely a level indicator.
You can use perk points earned on level-ups to upgrade a number of categories: blades, rifles, handguns, assassination, cold-blood, sniper rifles, engineering, hacking, shotgun melee, two-handed, and maybe one more I didn't have time to write down. The level-up skill tree is a branching thing that looks like a motherboard almost, with cables going out from the center.
A loading screen was shown just for fast travel.
So, levels are still there (together with bullet sponges in case of higher levels, since that's how levels have always worked in any videogame), you unlock skills when levelling up (and not only via cyberware), fast travel is very classic (loading screen and that's it), I just need the confirmation that gear is level gated and contextual animations haven't been added since the old demo and all my biggest fears are reality (= none of my feedback was close to CDPR's ideas, which is fair): high suspension of disbelief is requied to play the game, immersion my ass.
We can assume that level cap will be around 35-40 like in TW3, if level 18 is mid game.
Referred to my last 10 months on the forum, just to be clear