Why read cyberpunk? • .net

Why read cyberpunk?

Oh, the warning story, obviously. The story of cyberpunk is dark and terrifying, where corporate power, overpopulation, and mass surveillance form a dark and soulless society, where individuals mean nothing and those under their control care only about profits. Shows the world. They are warnings and something that scares us from the right decisions.

No, wait, obviously it’s about transhumanism and the constantly blurry line between humans and machines. Technology enhancements, changes and enhancements. A story that pushes our definition of what humanity means and where science takes us in our own lives.

You idiot, because they are the purest expression of revolutionary enthusiasm!cyber-punk,remember? They are the call to drive us to rebel against the corporate overlord! They show us that one can always make a difference! They prove the importance of free communication and the vast systems that surround us are unaffected by change as we stand and resist!

I think it’s a silly question. All stories have different purposes, even within the same genre, but in the past few months alone, we’ve consumed about 12 cyberpunk books, movies, games, and comics, but questions still remain. I will. Good way.

Because there are all the answers above? Even so in theory, I don’t know if I’m actually looking at them. Something is wrong. Something has been lost. I don’t feel the spark anymore. Cyberpunk I’m sorry, it’s me, not you.

Or wait, maybe it’s you! One of the books I recently worked on was Alfred Bester’s The Stars My Destination. “was. This is definitely a 1956 sci-fi classic that started the whole genre (no, it wasn’t Gibson or Philip K. Dick, as we all remember). And even though it came 25 years earlier, it’s clearly a form of proto-punk. “PyrE”, a giant company that dominates a terrifying vertical society, a hero who is worse than Flash Gordon, and a highly destructive doodad that every power person wants to get. Additional cyber points for ridiculous spells.

I’m joking, but if the weekend comes, TSMD is a decent reading. Vester knows how to write a solid setup, even if some of its attitudes are quite outdated, and he weaves a great hook: five centuries from now, humanity colonizes the solar system. It’s just a unique telepathy that everyone has learned how to use and teleport. Different people have mastered it to varying degrees, and no one has yet considered how to “get away” between planets, but it has changed our way of thinking and the functioning of society. Not only that, the main character, Gary Foil, is basically Edmond Dantès, with lots of tattoos, and I all agree. Foil is left behind by a spaceship destroyed in a book introduction, and after the passing ship has lived in an isolated location in deep space for six months, apparently ignoring the distress signal causes him to lose his head in anger. Foil succeeded in repairing his ship and returning it to civilization, launching a revenge campaign against the ship’s crew and owners that spurred him, but far more than he thought. I realized that was happening behind the scenes. .. And he was able to get stuck in the midst of a large conspiracy.

As I said, it’s worth a blow, because a good premise is more than enough to push the occasional deadlock execution (Vester has a pace problem and Foil is the best to use the whole book. Not a simple hero). Still, it’s a bit strange that stories written in the 1950s somehow feel more imaginative than the other genres that follow … but that’s a word. It may be a problem.

The most interesting thing I’ve been trying out about cyberpunk lately is what it’s doing.It’s not Traditional cyberpunk. The Stars My Destination, The Stars My Destination! The best parts of are teleport gimmicks and those in outer space. Electric Sheep is investigating changes in social attitudes and priorities after being damaged by a nuclear war. Shadowrun is a magical angle that combines sci-fi and fantasy elements to create something new and relatively fresh.

Cyber ​​1

The worst thing that happened to cyberpunk was that it became a recognized genre. There are metaphors in genres, and metaphors are predictable.The power of cyberpunk is all in the position of counterculture and presents us with plausible dystopia caused by the very problems that exist in our society. just now.. There should be a meaningful punch. But somewhere, I really forgot that this neon view of hell was supposed to be scary. It became something fun and then normal. And suddenly it didn’t make any sense.

It’s not hard to see the impact of the genre metaphor that hurt it. The usual aesthetics of cyberpunk are often clearly visible, even though they are seemingly set in the future … well, the late 70’s / 80’s. Blade Runner and Neuromancer left their mark, and suddenly all the visions of the future we have appear to be the Warriors mashed with Robot Wars.

It’s fair enough, but it was an image of the future inferred from the topical issues of the time. Beyond some tweaks about fashion details and what technology looks like at the superficial level, there have been no meaningful changes. Why doesn’t it evolve? Society has changed. Our priorities have changed. The struggles we face and how to deal with them are certainly changing. Cyberpunk doesn’t maintain as much punchy relevance as it needs to, or at least not that way. Yes, clearly There are individual stories that go against trends and prove their value in different ways, but at this point they are often exceptions to the rules.

So where does this genre go from here? I think we can afford to lose the idea of ​​what cyberpunk looks like in the first place. Mohawk thugs with bionic arms, smog-suffocated saturated neon streets, and spit out corporate holograms: these look naive and almost cute. No, now our future is a huge warehouse full of branded cardboard boxes, a wealthy coastal city leaving other countries, and obscuring or distorting information at all levels rather than safely distributing it. Looks like a useful internet. Big companies are clearly still a threat, which hasn’t changed, but now they’re working with democratically elected right-wing governments to grow unlimitedly for a strong economy and wealth in their pockets. Promoting.

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Cyberpunk 2077-Official Gameplay Trailer.

It’s not a lot of fun, but it’s exactly what science fiction should do at this point. Assuming cyberpunk really wants to be sci-fi, it’s not a complacent noir fiction with computer hacking and roborim to explain the complexities. I know some cyberpunk games are coming soon (I can’t believe no one picked them up), but they don’t look particularly bold and positive when it comes to the story. .. Now, it’s literally named after its own genre. Sure, it’s acceptable for 80’s pen and paper RPGs, but 40 years later it’s not that exciting. When Keanu Reeves removes the rocker shade while telling him to burn the city, the genre feels like it’s been boiled down to the median average. Glody!

2077 hasn’t been released yet and may surprise me-really, really hope it will-but in a strange and terrible way, Watch Dogs Legion is actually a modern cyber in 2020. The game claims to be carrying an AAA torch for punk … well, storytelling and theme mess. The corps is certainly more topical, and throughout Brexit, its technology is (to some extent) more reflective of modern society, and even the presentation of youthful rebellions is not so outdated.Quite old, yes, but not So date. “Focus grouped 2015” rather than “Manga exaggerated 1982”.And Ubisoft is desperate to convince people that it is nothing The political of their game about overthrowing oppressive right-wing surveillance as a result of real-world semi-election events … well, the overall concept is still a bit less than the general “bad corporate” ideology. It looks like you’re aiming for something high.

Cyberpunk (same genre as games) should aim for more than predictable. It should shock you, provoke you, tear you out of your complacency, and push you to fight the very future it is showing you. This genre is flared and die So that we can go back and evolve from generation to generation. Until then, I’ll ask myself … Why read cyberpunk?


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