Like most great fiction genres, Cyberpunk has its roots in novels and short stories. But there’s also a whole range of games with a Cyberpunk feel, a lot of them with rich worlds and storytelling on par with the best Gibson novels.
Here’s our favourite tabletop and video games with a Cyberpunk theme.
The Best Cyberpunk Games
Shadowrun is a turn based RPG with squad tactics set in a Cyberpunk world that mixes hackers with magic, close and long range combat. Available on multiple platforms, including your phone, it’s a tidy game with a great art style, and there’s nothing white like role playing an ogre with a chainsaw and a direct line to the matrix.
System Shock 1&2
System Shock (1994) and System Shock 2 (1999) are first person PC shooting games that include elements of role playing and survival horror. Set a hundred years in the future, the System Shock world incorporates bionics, cyber tech and alien worlds.
Award winning titles, System Shock has a dark, claustrophobic mood that epitomises the feel of 90s Cyberpunk.
Deus Ex 1 – 4
The original Deus Ex was a groundbreaking first person shooter with a focus on variety of style of play. Players could solve problems through violence, hacking, stealth, or through the use of enhancements. Deus Ex invests heavily in story and set pieces and was considered a groundbreaking game.
While the sequel failed to achieve the critical success of it’s original, Deux Ex 3: Human Revolution saw a positive return to form. Set as a prequel to Deus Ex 1, it modernises the gameplay and added a new aesthetic and colour palette. Blending thematic storytelling, Human Revolution evokes the story of Icarus to examine what happens when we hand over control of our bodies to profit centered corporations. Deus Ex 4 will continue the story when it is released.
A fast paced action shooter for Android. Single player campaign and multiplayer death match. A wide variety of weapons and classic FPS shooter feel.
Part Johnny Mnemonic, part extreme parkour, Mirror’s Edge takes place in a corporate dystopian future where players control Faith, a runner that couriers sensitive information between clients while hiding from government watchdogs. A sequel, Mirror’s Edge Catalyst, is in the works.
There’s a lot of anticipation around Cyberpunk 2077. However developers CD Projekt RED (who are responsible for the fantastic Witcher series) have indicated that there won’t be much press about this great looking title until 2017.
Developed by Michael Pondsmith Cyberpunk 2020 is a role playing tabletop game similar to fantasy classics like Dungeons and Dragons. Set in a ‘high tech low life’ world or corporate bureaucracy. One of CP2020’s most interesting mechanics is that you’re character’s health remains static, meaning even if you’re the best gunman out, you’re still gonna bite the dust with a gunshot wound to the head.
Cyberpunk 2020 has spawned multiple guidebooks, new scenarios and is played around the world.
Shadowrun 4th Edition
The 4th edition of Shadowrun streamlines the mechanics of earlier editions and updates the world in line with the modern technologies. While some prefer the aesthetic of the earlier editions, 20 years since its inception Shadowrun is still alive and kicking.
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