Cyberpunk Games to Play While Waiting on Cyberpunk 2077

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Following eight torturous years since the initial announcement trailer blew everyone's minds, the unthinkable has happened. Cyberpunk 2077 has been delayed, and isn't due to drop for console and PC until September 17, 2020.

That means we've got an extra five months to wait until finally exploring Night City than originally planned. With all that extra time on our hands, why not delve into other takes on the cyberpunk style?

Here we've rounded up the 12 best cyberpunk games covering every genre and platform with a few tabletop options thrown in as well! 

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Observer

Cyberpunk typically comes in a dystopian setting, and while games like Shadowrun and even the titular Cyberpunk itself flirt with the idea, not many games in this genre explore the full horror of what that really means.

That's not the case with Observer, as paranoia and hopelessness are major themes in a world where unchecked corporations (and technology) run amok.

Rutger Hauer stars as the main character in this exceptionally well executed version of the "walking simulator" horror game. Observer puts a twist on that style, melding in sci-fi detective mechanics as you process crime scenes and jack into the memories of the deceased. Some of those memory runs end up like a fever dream of a Black Mirror episode.

Although Hauer has sadly passed away since Observer was released, Bloober Team has recently been posting teaser material indicating a possible second entry may be in the works.

Transistor

While the cyberpunk style tends to be thought of as fairly one note, the differences between Observer and Transistor show that doesn't have to be the case. Despite featuring a totally different color scheme, protagonist, and gameplay style, both are still firmly in the cyberpunk realm.

This is the second main entry from indie darlings Supergiant Games, and sadly many of their later titles haven't been quite as well received as the debut Bastion (the odd football combat mechanics in Pyre didn't do it for me, to be honest).

Transistor still absolutely has the goods though, featuring more options on the combat front, and just as high quality of a soundtrack as its predecessor. Although the sci-fi story is told in a non-traditional (and occasionally obtuse) manner, the journey here is well worth taking from beginning to end.

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Shadowrun Hong Kong

Despite the focus on magic, the Shadowrun series has long exemplified the basic cyberpunk tenets of unrestrained corporate greed and technology merging with human life.

A trilogy of standalone games from Harebrained Schemes kicked off with Shadowrun Returns, and all three of them are worth playing while waiting on Cyberpunk 2077.

While second title Dragonfall probably has the most direct cyberpunk elements, Hong Kong isn't lacking in them and has the best overall gameplay of the three.

Make sure to pick up the missable companion Racter on your playthrough though, and get ready for some mind-blowing discussions on transhumanism and what it means for the species when they merge with robotics. 

Satellite Reign

Focusing more on combat, Satellite Reign is an anomaly in the realm of squad strategy games because it takes place in real time, rather than going turn-based. That can be a big change to overcome if you're switching from Transistor (which uses both styles) or Shadowrun (which is entirely turn based). 

Here your squad will move through typically neon and darkness-shrouded back streets while dealing with the ever present and omnipotent mega corps. There's plenty of different ways to tackle any given scenario based on your squad load out, and the cyberpunk themes are baked right into the gameplay.

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Dex

So far every single game in our list of Cyberpunk 2077 replacements has been of a completely different genre, and we're not going to stop that trend now! Dex is a side scrolling, platformer RPG with some non-linear elements that let you tackle events in different ways.

For a bit of variety, the hacking segments spice things up by switching to a twin stick shooter mini game. If you've got need for a nostalgic trip down '90s game design, Dex is the game to pick, and it has a free demo at Steam if you want to try before you buy.

Snatcher

Even more old school than Dex, the Hideo Kojima-led Snatcher may be one of the very first graphical cyberpunk games to hit consoles. This forgotten gem was released in Japan back in '88 and then eventually hit North America with a Sega CD port in '94.

Snatcher is basically made of classic tropes, but that's because they were still fairly new at the time. The amnesiac investigator on the hunt for androids who look like humans will make you think alternatively of Terminator or Blade Runner.

On the gameplay front, Snatcher sits somewhere between a point 'n click adventure game and a visual novel but good luck finding a working copy at this point! Your best bets are going to be abandonware sites, trying to get a Sega CD emulator up and running, or just watching full Let's Plays over at YouTube.

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Remember Me

Another blast from the past, Remember Me doesn't require going nearly as far back to enjoy as Snatcher. This one originally hit the Xbox 360 and PS3, although in cyberpunk tech terms, that's basically an eternity.

Although it was sort of panned at launch due to a few issues with repetitive combat, Remember Me has essentially become one of those sleeper hits that's thought of fondly long after its time has past.

The action combat and cyberpunk world on display here is rather surprising considering Remember Me was released by Dontnod before the development team started working on Life Is Strange!

If you don't feel like pulling out and hooking up your old 360, Remember Me is available on Steam now, and its up for grabs super cheap!

StarCrawlers

We aren't done on our whirlwind tour of wildly different genres in the cyberpunk style, as StarCrawlers offers something you don't typically see. This one takes the classic Wizardy or Dungeon Master style of first person dungeon crawler and converts it into a sic-fi cyberpunk setting!

Rather than plundering those underground dungeons filled with kobolds and slimes, instead your crew is committing corporate sabotage and completing bounties for the amoral megacorps.

If you've played Legend Of Grimrock or Might And Magic X into the ground, StarCrawlers is a great palette cleanser by offering similar gameplay in a  totally different setting.

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Mindnight

Here we go with another radical gameplay shift to show just how versatile the concept of "cyberpunk" can become. Mindnight is a social interaction game of guessing who is for and against you.

Essentially, this is the exact same gameplay as the One Night Ultimate Werewolf card game, except that its online and features hackers instead of werewolves.

While you can jump into multiplayer sessions with randos, Mindnight is signification more fun to play with people you know due to the mechanics of guessing who is doing what.

Infinity: The Roleplaying Game

We've covered a huge range of game styles on the digital front, but there's still more ways to experience the cyberpunk style, especially if you like a community aspect to your gaming.

Infinity is a cyberpunk-heavy 2d20 pen and paper RPG from Modiphius. Even if you aren't an avid roleplayer you might be familiar with the name already, as Modiphius has tabletop versions of Fallout, Conan, Mutant Year Zero, and other franchises.

This one actually goes a bit beyond the bounds of typical cyberpunk, as its inspired by a tabletop skirmish game. That means you get sci-fi traditional warfare, electronic info warfare, and social psychological warfare all in one game and the book is absolutely huge to make room for all those rules!

Obviously the hardcover book is on the expensive side, but you can grab a PDF copy through places like DriveThruRPG for half the price.

Cyberpunk Red

In a look at games to play while waiting on Cyberpunk 2077, we couldn't leave out the grandaddy of tabletop RPGs that inspired CD Projekt Red's video game in the first place!

There have been a few different editions of this franchise over the years, and the latest is Cyberpunk Red. If you want to know what to expect from Night City and delve deep into the lore and style before 2077 sees official release, this is the tabletop game to pick.

Reality's Edge

We couldn't resist just one more genre hop before wrapping up! If your gaming group is more into the combat side than the roleplaying side, then take a look at Reality's Edge.

What you get here is a setting-independent cyberpunk tabletop skirmish ruleset that lets you use whatever minis you want. That makes Reality's Edge much less of a money investment than jumping into a full blown tabletop war game with its own miniature line.

What other cyberpunk themed games did we forget about that should have made the list of games to play while impatiently waiting on Cyberpunk 2077? 

Sound off with your top picks below so we have something to do while twiddling our thumbs after the latest release date delay.

In the mean time, we'll just be gawking at the Keanu Reeves guitar-shredding figurines and line of Cyberpunk 2077 Funko Pop figures while dreaming of the day that Cyberpunk 2077 actually hits PC and consoles.

Published Feb. 13th 2020

Featured Contributor

Ty splits his time between writing horror fiction and writing about video games. After 25 years of gaming, Ty can firmly say that gaming peaked with Planescape Torment, but that doesn't mean he doesn't have a soft spot for games like Baldur's Gate, Fallout: New Vegas, Bioshock Infinite, and Horizon: Zero Dawn. He has previously written for GamerU and MetalUnderground. He also writes for PortalMonkey covering gaming laptops and peripherals.

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