7 Great References in Cyberpunk That You Probably Missed

Films, anime, books, music, video games, in Cyberpunk 2077 you can find references to so many things that it would almost be impossible to list them all.

It is well known, that the tabletop game Cyberpunk 2020 by Mike Pondsmith is the main inspiration for 2077. Among other works, the developers often quote as general inspiration:

  • Blade Runner
  • The Matrix trilogy
  • System Shock
  • Deus Ex
  • Japanese cyberpunk

For our list, we found some more specific details from the game (weapons, technology, ideas, etc) that are less known or that you might have missed.

Here’s Our List of Cyberpunk 2077 References

Johnny Mnemonic’s Laser Whip & Monowire

Monowire is one of the most popular implants and, especially after patch 1.5, the base of many builds for V. It seems safe to assume that the idea behind this implant comes from the Laser Whip used by the Yakuza assassin Shinji in the movie Johnny Mnemonic.

Strange Days’ SQUID technology & Braindance

Strange Days is a film that did not receive the praises it deserved but it’s slowly being reevaluated. The central point of the movie is the SQUID technology something that Cyberpunk 2077 fans know very well: reliving someone else’s memory in POV, experiencing his/her physical and mental sensations. Basically, a braindance.

Ghost in the Shell: Johnny Inside V’s Body

Ghost in the Shell influenced Cyberpunk 2077 on many factors but one that is not often considered is the core of both the anime and the game: a person (brain or construct) inside an alien body.

Ghost in the Shell is one of the main sources of inspiration for Cyberpunk 2077
Ghost in the Shell is one of the main sources of inspiration for Cyberpunk 2077

The Fifth Element & Over-the-top clothing

For many players, style is one of the most important aspects of Cyberpunk 2077. The flashy fashion style we found in and around Night City is not too different from Paul Gaultier’s design for The Fifth Element: punching colors, extreme lines, and just plain weird outfits. Also, the first special outfit we have in the game is a set of bandages which looks like a little homage to Leeloo’s first outfit.

Leeloo's first outfit
Leeloo’s first outfit

Akira’s Iconic Bike & Yaiba Kusanagi CT-3X

This Japanese cyberpunk classic has been hugely influential. The most obvious quote we can find in Cyberpunk 2077 is the design of the Yaiba Kusanagi CT-3X bike which resembles Akira’s iconic bike.

Akira's Iconic Bike
Akira’s Iconic Bike

Mad Max & the Aldecaldos

Though their cars are not so over-the-top, the Aldecaldos are very similar to Mad Max’s mentality and lifestyle. They are road warriors living in a wasteland, pushed by self-preservation but with a weakness to helping those in worse conditions than them.

Mad Max and the Wasteland
Mad Max and the Wasteland

Shadowrun Returns’ Cyberware Doctors & Ripperdocs

Cyberware is one of the bases of any cyberpunk work, however, there’s a striking resemblance with how the mechanics work in both games as well as the interface to install new parts. Though both games are heavily influenced by Deus Ex, Shadowrun and Cyberpunk 2077 share similar terminology and the fact that doctors take care of installing cyberwar.

Shadowrun Returns' Cyberware Installation Panel
Shadowrun Returns’ Cyberware Installation Panel

Do you want to discover more cyberpunk movies? Check our article about some of the most iconic cyberpunk movies.


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