What’s up, chooms? Get yourselves ready for the very best in dystopian delight. These games represent the “Hall of Fame” in cyberpunk gaming. From classic retro-future to modern futuristic, these cyberpunk games are all must-plays. Time to get jacked in and download this preem ranking!
10. The Ascent
Kicking off our countdown of the best cyberpunk games is The Ascent, released in 2021.
In a futuristic dystopian world known as Veles, all is controlled by a powerful megacorporation called “The Ascent Group.” You take on the role of a worker enslaved by the company. You embark on a mission to navigate a sprawling, vertical cityscape. The environment is filled with mercenaries and mega-corporations. Everywhere, mysteries waiting to be unraveled.
What makes the play unique is its twin-stick shooter, the ability to aim both high and low on enemy targets. You and your co-op companions will have to blast through hordes of enemies.
The Ascent has received high praise for its towering arcology. It’s admired for its gorgeous cyberpunk visuals. The soundtrack is a standout. Players love its deep character customization. What makes it fun to play is the thrill of cooperative mayhem in a visually stunning world.
9. Mirror’s Edge
Although not the traditional cyberpunk fare, Mirror’s Edge (2008), has garnered passionate fans because of its unique style. We definitely think it’s cyberpunk-adjacent enough to make our list.
You assume the role of Faith Connors. The futuristic city with comfortable living and nearly nonexistent crime isn’t what it seems. An oppressive regime controls citizens and the media. You’re part of an underground crew of parkour couriers, called Runners, who deliver covert messages. The play involves first-person parkour and platforming. The focus is on fluid movement and momentum.
The unique take of Mirror’s Edge sets it apart from the typical cyberpunk aesthetic. The play, with its exhilarating sense of speed and seamless blend of acrobatics, is downright addictive. There is also plenty of combat in a world dominated by surveillance.
8. RoboCop: Rogue City
A newcomer among the classics on our list is RoboCop: Rogue City, released in 2023. Nonetheless, it’s already earned its place in cyberpunk gaming history.
You’ll step into the metal boots of the iconic cyborg law enforcer, becoming RoboCop (played once again by Peter Weller!). In a dystopian future near Detroit, your task is to clear the city of criminals. On the crime-ridden streets, you’ll use a combination of firepower and justice. The gameplay is filled with third-person action. The emphasis centers on intense gunfights and the use of RoboCop’s iconic arsenal.
Players love this top-notch homage to the classic film franchise. And who can resist the power trip of being RoboCop? The game delivers a totally satisfying cathartic experience from dispensing justice to the criminal underbelly.
Soar through the skies of the sprawling city of Nivalis in Cloudpunk, first released in 2020.
You play as Rania, a new driver for the “semi-legal” delivery company Cloudpunk. Nivalis sits above the sea, built on tall vertical structures. Transportation and transport occur in flying cars. Your job is to deliver packages, but your goal is to uncover the secrets hidden within the towering skyscrapers. The play combines exploration in a flying vehicle. The narrative is driven by decision-making as you uncover the city’s mysteries.
What makes this a hidden gem? Its visually stunning cyberpunk aesthetic is a sight to behold. The atmospheric soundtrack is a perfect companion. The narrative that weaves a tale of intrigue and morality. It’s hard to resist becoming immersed in this neon-soaked underbelly of a city in the clouds.
6. Shadowrun (Sega Genesis)
A gem of the 16-bit era, Shadowrun, released in 1994 for the Sega Genesis, was adapted from the cyberpunk game of the same name by FASA. Thankfully, this has a more open-ended style of gameplay than its forgettable 1993 Super NES counterpart (you won’t find that game on our ranking).
You play as Joshua in the Shadowrun universe, in the 2050s. You can choose to be a street samurai, a decker, or a gator shaman. You’ll participate in Shadowruns, illegal jobs for pseudo-anonymous contractors. The gameplay involves battles in real-time, exploration, and a branching narrative.
This game made history with its pioneering blend of RPG and cyberpunk elements. It’s noted for its immersive world. Impactful choices shape the fate of your character in a world where magic and technology collide.
5. Deus Ex
Deus Ex, released in 2000, descends into the conspiratorial depths of a dystopian world set in the year 2050.
The game follows the footsteps of JC Denton, an agent of the fictional agency United Nations Anti-Terrorist Coalition (UNATCO). JC has superhuman abilities thanks to nanotechnology. His mission is to combat hostile forces in a world that’s been ravaged by a deadly plague. Humanity is struggling with inequality and on the brink of collapse, blending stealth. The play involves hacking and brutal combat as you attempt to unravel a global conspiracy. There are first-person action RPG elements. Players can augment their character with cybernetic enhancements.
What makes this Hall of Fame game? The gritty cyberpunk atmosphere of this game laid the groundwork for the genre. The stellar storytelling delivers an unforgettable adventure. Repeated plays remain fresh thanks to the branching narrative.
4. Shadowrun Dragonfall
Released in 2014, Shadowrun Dragonfall was easily the best Shadowrun game since the 1994 Genesis game mentioned earlier in the ranking..
You take on the role of a Shadowrunner, a stealthy mercenary-for-hire. You’ve recently arrived in the anarchic free state of Berlin to join a team headed by a colleague. After all, there’s no better place for a quick payday… or so you think.
The narrative revolves around a deadly conspiracy and is filled with moral dilemmas and corporate intrigue. There’s lots of interaction with other characters and team-based collaboration. The gameplay is loaded with fun tactical, turn-based combat.
Why do fans love it? For the freedom to shape your character’s skills and personality in a world where every decision matters. The story is rich and filled with intrigue. The dynamic mix of magic and technology makes this a must-play.
3. System Shock 2
System Shock 2, originally released in 1999, takes you on a terrifying journey aboard a derelict spaceship overrun by rogue AI and mutated horrors.
You assume the role of a soldier trying to stem the outbreak of a genetic infection. The game takes place on a starship in the year 2114, where you’ll have to survive the onslaught of grotesque enemies while you uncover the mysteries of the ship. The play is centered around survival horror and RPG elements. There’s also an emphasis on resource management and strategic combat. Along the way, you’ll develop skills and traits to help you survive.
What sets it apart? The atmospheric tension holds you in its grip. The innovative fusion of RPG and survival horror mechanics really makes this a winner. The storyline that blurs the line between man and machine earns this game its place in cyberpunk history.
Released in 2022, Stray is centered around a stray cat who falls into a walled city. This compound is populated by robots and machines. And even worse, by mutant bacteria.
You play as the “Stray,” seeing through the eyes of a cat equipped with a tiny backpack. You’ll embark on a journey to return to the surface, along with the help of a drone companion named “B-12.”
The gameplay involves climbing up obstacles and leaping across platforms and interact with the environment to open new paths. Your companion, B-12 can help hack into the technology of a world dominated by artificial intelligence to solve puzzles. You must stay alive by avoiding the Zurks and Sentinels that are out to kill you and your companion.
What makes this game a cyberpunk classic? Its whimsical take on the cyberpunk genre adds a unique perspective and feline charm to the futuristic setting. Its captivating art style is one-of-a-kind.
1. Cyberpunk 2077
Cyberpunk 2077 was released in 2020 and has seen a fantastic DLC release plus tons of patches and gameplay updates. So if you had decided to hold off on playing because you heard the game was a buggy mess, then it’s finally time to jack in.
You’ll walk in the shoes of “V,” a mercenary (played by Gavin Drea/Cherami Leigh). You’re in a fictional California city known as “Night City.” The game kicks off with a heist gone wrong and the narrative goes from there. I won’t spoil anything — I’ll just say that it’s easily one of the most immersive and engaging narratives I’ve ever played… Not just in the cyberpunk genre.
Why did it steal the cyberpunk crown? The breathtaking open-world design is mesmerizing. The sheer depth of customization is outstanding. Anyway, what’s better than the magnetic allure of Keanu Reeves as the enigmatic Johnny Silverhand? The game’s immersive world-building truly makes it a must-play in the cyberpunk canon.