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Why does cyberpunk refuse to move on?

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13 minutes ago, Matt_E said:

ATTENTION, ALL PLANETS OF THE SOLAR FEDERATION:

WE HAVE ASSUMED CONTROL.

 

there is a setting begging to be written.

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18 hours ago, ChalkLine said:

Some would say that cyberpunk is the doomed rebellion you know will not succeed but is better than submitting to the process of dehumanisation

Interesting argument, in light of many of the rebels giving up significant portions of their humanity by replacing it with chrome - and not just functional parts, like those former military / corporate security cyborgs or prosthetics.

Cyberpunk scratches on transhumanism, but in a hopeless way. You're able to make a statement, but won't be able to affect any changes.

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I always thought that Cyberpunk reflects the alienation of certain sectors of society - The very poor, the misfits, the people who cannot hold down a proper job or don't want to and those who The Man has hurt in the past. Cyber Enhancement can be seen as a way to get rich quick, which never really works, or a way to further emphasise the alienation.

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19 hours ago, Raleel said:

I might argue that it's less about being tricky and deceiving and more about being outside of, and likely against, conventional societal norms

I agree with this. A few years back I was in a conversation on a certain fantasy author's web site, and we all got to comparing themes and noticed how the traditional Sword & Sorcery genre (as in Howard and Leiber, not really Vance or Moorcock), Cyberpunk, Noir, and even Westerns all shared themes of alienation and "the outsider". It made a lot of sense to me as I like those genres about equally, and more than any others.

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Yes, I agree:  Alienation (from a mainstream society that is nonetheless degenerate and awful) and dehumanization are the key tropes of cyberpunk, I would say, aside from advanced technology.  As has been hinted, though, the only thing worse than this alienation would be assimilation...  Attempts to break the system may or may not be totally hopeless; that depends on the particular writer, I think.

That's an interesting point about S&S and the other genres being similar here.  I hadn't thought of that.  Maybe this explains the mindset that, back in the First Wave of OSR FRPGs, led to the "murder hobo" nature of so many characters:  The players were expressing something they had subconsciously internalized from the S&S lit.  Hmm.

Edited by Matt_E

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On 2/24/2019 at 12:34 PM, Matt_E said:

That's an interesting point about S&S and the other genres being similar here.  I hadn't thought of that.  Maybe this explains the mindset that, back in the First Wave of OSR FRPGs, led to the "murder hobo" nature of so many characters:  The players were expressing something they had subconsciously internalized from the S&S lit.  Hmm.

Honestly, I see the wargaming roots here.  Early Gygax was Tolkien-izing & Leiber'izing the team-A / team-B wargames, where the "referee" was a neutral arbiter of rules-arguments.  Magic replaced guns/artillery/&c; dragons replaced aircraft and bombs &c.  Etc.

Then came the twin notions of grabbing the "interesting commander-unit" out of the squad/platoon/company/brigade/whatever, and just running the ONE PERSON as a "unit" and have "team B" be the Ref.

The focus of the game remained the wargaming focus -- combat; adding in small-unit purposes like "scouting" (exploration) and some tropes from the literature like traps&puzzles...  (edit:  and huge piles of treasure!)

Edited by g33k
for the gold!

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5 hours ago, g33k said:

Honestly, I see the wargaming roots here.  Early Gygax was Tolkien-izing & Leiber'izing the team-A / team-B wargames, where the "referee" was a neutral arbiter of rules-arguments.  Magic replaced guns/artillery/&c; dragons replaced aircraft and bombs &c.  Etc.

Then came the twin notions of grabbing the "interesting commander-unit" out of the squad/platoon/company/brigade/whatever, and just running the ONE PERSON as a "unit" and have "team B" be the Ref.

The focus of the game remained the wargaming focus -- combat; adding in small-unit purposes like "scouting" (exploration) and some tropes from the literature like traps&puzzles...  (edit:  and huge piles of treasure!)

AKA... Chainmail

SDLeary

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19 hours ago, g33k said:

Honestly, I see the wargaming roots here.  Early Gygax was Tolkien-izing & Leiber'izing the team-A / team-B wargames, where the "referee" was a neutral arbiter of rules-arguments.  Magic replaced guns/artillery/&c; dragons replaced aircraft and bombs &c.  Etc.

Then came the twin notions of grabbing the "interesting commander-unit" out of the squad/platoon/company/brigade/whatever, and just running the ONE PERSON as a "unit" and have "team B" be the Ref.

The focus of the game remained the wargaming focus -- combat; adding in small-unit purposes like "scouting" (exploration) and some tropes from the literature like traps&puzzles...  (edit:  and huge piles of treasure!)

Yes, to me the wargaming roots are clear and well-documented.  I was more wondering about the subconscious stuff that might have been part of the zeitgeist back then.

 

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