7 of the Best Books Like Cyberpunk 2077 If the Game Let You Down
So you’re here because you recently bought one of the most anticipated video games in the recent past, Cyberpunk 2077. Then you loaded it on your PS4 to make it act like a PS2 game in the worst of the moment. And now, utterly devastated that you spent $ 60 on a game you can’t play, look for a tech-intensive solution to fix it all again. If that sounds like you, then I’ve got you covered.
If you’re just here for some recommendations and have no idea what I’m talking about when it comes to video games, that’s cool too! Check out our beginner’s guide to the genre here too. Now let’s dive into these cyberpunk worlds (unless they involve our mischievous antihero characters) and forget the travesty of Cyberpunk 2077. There, there.
Remote control from Nnedi Okorafor
This January 2021 release shows what award-winning author Okorafor does best: paint realistic and enchanting images of the future. This is not your typical cyberpunk world. This is the African-futuristic Ghana where a young girl named Fatima is looking for a place to belong after mysterious circumstances have avoided her from everyone else. This slow, meditative experiment about childhood and loneliness has the characteristics of a fairy tale with the backdrop of a cyber-dependent world.
Repo Virtual by Corey J. White
This debut novel, described as a “cyberpunk robbery story”, takes you to the fascinating city of Neo Songdo. Augmented and virtual reality have priority there, a facade that covers a corrupt corporate belly. Talk about cyberpunk tropes! But White revives these archetypes of the genre, juxtaposing an endlessly hilarious robbery job with searing social commentary. In addition, the main character is called Julius Dax. There really couldn’t be better (and more cyberpunk).
Infomocracy by Malka Older
Here is a book for those of you more interested in the political implications of a tech-heavy new world. In the near future of this novel, there is a search engine monopoly called information. After developing a system called microdemocracy, the entire globe will be divided into tiny city-states of around 100,000 inhabitants, each with their own governments. While this may sound great on paper, of course, these microdemocracies are falling victim to a huge majority who want to keep their power regardless of the cost.
Company town of Madeleine Ashby
Company Town follows Hwa, one of the last people in their community to choose not to change their bodies biologically. However, that doesn’t mean she isn’t a powerhouse, and an influential family hires her to train the youngest member of their clan. Also, a killer seems to be at large, who could possibly be from another timeline? Ashby creates a fun environment here and spends valuable time growing characters and building relationships.
Autonomous by Annalee Newitz
Most of all, this novel is just cool. First, the protagonist is a future pharmaceutical Robin Hood pirate who gives medicine to those who cannot afford it. Second, she’s being chased by an emotionally stunted agent and a robot (who might fall in love?). And third, she travels in her own submarine. If that doesn’t convince you, I don’t know what.
Brown Girl in the Ring by Nalo Hopkinson
This is another story that blurs the lines between folklore and science fiction. In dystopian Toronto, the young single mother Ti-Jeanne just wants to take care of her child and ignore the various dramas around her. But the local gang is dealing with the father of their child, and somehow old gods trigger contact with Ti-Jeanne and pull her on a journey she has never asked about. This is a perfect example of how religion and science fiction can be combined in a novel, and Hopkinson’s portrayal of this world of the near future is breathtaking.
Nexus by Ramez name
Last but not least, our list marks the beginning of an exciting trilogy. Its title is derived from the name of a “nano-drug” that can connect the human mind. Of course, this very cool scientific innovation brings with it some problems. Some are trying to make the drug better for the future, while others are aiming to manipulate their powers for evil. Your standard story “This is why we can’t have beautiful things”. Nexus tells a truly global story and moves effortlessly from Shanghai to San Francisco to Bangkok. If you’ve enjoyed books like Michael Crichton’s in the past, be sure to get this one.
I hope these proxy for Cyberpunk 2077 will ease the pain of disappointment a little. And be hopeful knowing that technology is increasing exponentially in our daily lives and the cyberpunk genre is not going anywhere anytime soon.
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