Cyberpunk has become popular again recently. Maybe you don't understand "cyber" and don't listen to "punk", but your social software homepage will definitely have the game "Cyberpunk 2077". Since the establishment of the project in 2012, discussions about this 3A game have never stopped. Its 2018 trailer was played nearly 2 million times on station B, while the 2019 trailer was nearly 5 million. Although this year's expected release time has been postponed three times, the number of online players on Steam quickly exceeded 1 million in less than a day after the official release. In addition to the game's unique "squeezing body" link, "Cyberpunk 2077" It immediately became a hot topic of discussion and ridicule on major social platforms.
In fact, the most attractive part of "Cyberpunk 2077" lies in its cyberpunk worldview setting: a high-tech future society, a ghostly world illuminated by neon lights and advertising screens, cybermen who have undergone biological transformation, dirty and dark small Violence and crime in the alley, a high gap between rich and poor, heaven and hell coexist here.
The unique world view makes it stand out in the 3A game group, and the cyber world seems to be the best container for people's vigorous imagination.
Cyberpunk is not a band and has nothing to do with Versailles. Cyberpunk is a compound noun composed of the prefix cyber- and punk of Cybernetics. The word Punk has been rebellious since its birth, and it makes "swearing" full of positive social meaning. When the two words are combined, a rebellious emotional drama between machines and humans emerges spontaneously. The word cyborg comes from cyborg. This concept comes from the classic book "Cybernetics" written by American mathematician Wiener in 1948. In the book, he equates the feedback mechanism of biological system and machine system, blurring the boundary between machine and human , providing a theoretical basis for bio-mechanized transformation.
To put it simply, cyborgs are human beings who use external forces such as science and technology to improve themselves or improve human body functions. The simple version of cyborgs can be those humans who are equipped with prosthetics, dentures or pacemakers. In the future, as technology With progress, the human body may be replaced by more machines, and when the modification reaches a certain level, it will become the horrifying reinvented person in cyberpunk.
The term punk is related to the punk movement in the 1970s. Punk refers to both punk rock and music fans, as well as derogatory connotations such as hooligans or useless things. The more representative punk bands include Sex Pistols, The Clash, etc. They have strange costumes, have a strong countercultural awareness, and most of them still hold the concept of "anarchism". These concepts have become a corner of the cyberpunk worldview.
Most of their birth backgrounds are based on the combination of low-life and high tech, usually with advanced science and technology, and then compared with a certain degree of collapsed social structure; the story frame is usually that the social order is highly controlled by financial groups or secret organizations, And the main character exploits the loophole in it to make some sort of breakthrough. "Cybernetics" and "Cyborg" laid the foundation for the development of cyberpunk, and they shined brilliantly in the newly born science fiction work "New Wave Movement"!
born in downtown
The creation of the famous American science fiction writer Philip K. Dick began in the "golden age" of science fiction themes, went through the entire "new wave" movement, and directly influenced the "cyberpunk" genre of later generations.
Science fiction writer Philip K. Dick (1928-1982), was born on December 16, 1928 in Chicago, Illinois, USA. He is not only the winner of the Hugo Award and the Campbell Award, but also known as "a science fiction writer among science fiction writers."
In addition to the dozens of books still in print, Philip K. Dick wrote short stories and a handful of works published in open-shelf magazines stateside. At least seven of his novels have been adapted into films. Although the writer was appreciated by well-known science fiction writers such as Stanislaw Lem, Robert Heinlein and Robert Silverberg during his lifetime, he was rarely recognized by the general readers, and it was not gradually recognized until after his death.
Dick's creation became the pioneer of the genre of electric rebels. His works all describe a morally degraded American society in California. His early novels mainly explored social and political topics, while his later works discussed theological topics. These descriptions are actually based on his own life experience, such as "Scheming Scanner" and "VALIS". Alternate universes and simulacra are common plot development tools, where ordinary, working people live in virtual worlds, not the galactic elite. "There are no heroes in Dick's book"
The science fiction novel "Blade Runner" tells that in 2049, when humans and replicants coexist, the conflict between the two races escalates. The new generation of Blade Runner K finds the former Blade Runner who has disappeared for many years, and joins hands to stop it again. The fateful battle between humans and replicants.
The screen production of the film version of "Blade Runner" is a large project that relies heavily on artificial lighting. There are almost no scenes under sunny sunlight in the entire film, and most of the time is shot in the dark, creating a large number of sharp contrasts between light and dark. shot. It is a milestone work of cyberpunk.
One of the contributions of "Blade Runner" to history is to freeze the visual identity of "cyberpunk" for the future. From text to film, from describing dialogue to lens language. The rapid development of science fiction films has not only promoted the development of the creative industry, but also spawned a rich cyberpunk culture.
In addition to affecting the European and American world, it has taken root among young people.
The cyberpunk craze that developed rapidly in the 1980s also deeply influenced the protagonist of the "core formula" in the future-Japan. In the 1980s and 1990s, Japan’s economy developed rapidly. Super-large enterprises and big chaebols controlled people’s daily necessities. The unemployment rate remained high. There were a large number of Internet refugees in Japan, who lived in Internet cafes with high daily fees. Society, what's more, they have not gone out for 40 years and are immersed in the virtual network world all day long. The "house" culture is wantonly breeding and overflowing among young people.
Journal KEROUAC 1998
The Japanese magazine "KEROUAC" recorded in the 1998 issue the style that emerged on the streets of Japan in the 1990s. In the early 1990s, the economic crisis swept across Japan, and the Japanese economy was in a bad situation. Many young people no longer believed in traditional business values. Overcoming the rules and regulations of the society, some design workers across the fashion field gathered on the streets to develop their own personalities. Therefore, American street style, punk style, and cyber elements began to rise rapidly.
The Y2K style that is being revived by the fashion circle
Y=year 2=2 K=kilo. Y2K is the abbreviation of year2000. Y2K is a popular culture that began to prevail from the mid-to-late 1990s to the early 2000s, with core optimism and technological utopianism. Y2K aesthetics includes retro and future, modern and avant-garde diversified styles.
Y2K was not a trendy style at first, but a technological crisis caused by the year 2000 problem, which caused a large-scale collapse of computers—the Thousand Bugs Problem. Cyberpunk information utopia begins.
Y2K recorded the craziest imagination and beautiful dreams of human beings in that period, making it essentially different from other styles, and Y2K was born in a peaceful fantasy.
Rich, highly saturated colors and a flamboyant personality were the "aesthetic correctness" of that era. Three-dimensional sense of technology, luminous metal material, transparency, candy color, computer data page, and futuristic elements are all components of Y2K. Under contrasting colors, color block splicing and other elements, a very interesting sense of cyber fashion is created. , giving a strong visual impact.
Cyberpunk is contagious and fermenting in the fashion circle
Nick Sullo (also known as xsullo), a film digital artist from California, mainly focuses on cyberpunk style in his personal works. At the beginning of 2000, he came into contact with and was attracted by digital art. Since then, he has started to use the subject matter technology he has mastered to create various creations. Xsullo's personal artwork is full of sci-fi style, showing cool and free and easy. He combines surrealism with techno-dystopian symbols of cyberpunk, all expressed with confident lines and extremely vivid colours.
These works often bring a sense of the future, as well as the vision of the end. It's unsettling and exaggerated and captivating at the same time. He often takes his deeply resonant digital works and brings them into the real world through the use of acrylics and spray paint on canvas. Every piece of work has a strong and suffocating punk style. Young people are easily attracted by the sense of picture.
The world created after the collision of cyber and punk can be simply understood as a dystopian high-tech future world. Judging from literature and film and television works, this world has three very obvious characteristics.
colorful image system
The most distinctive feature of cyberpunk is its strong visual impact, especially in urban settings. Cities in cyberspace are often filled with electronic information, and the facade of any building may become a display screen. There are stereoscopically projected advertisements everywhere. For example, the streets in "Ghost in the Shell" are full of 3D projections visible to the naked eye.
The colors of cyberpunk cities are mainly cool tones such as green, blue, and purple. On the one hand, it conforms to our imagination of a cold high-tech society. On the other hand, mixing these colors can often produce a dazzling neon-like visual impact.
△ "Cyberpunk 2077" in-game scene
In order to express the futuristic sense of high technology, cyberpunk cities are often densely packed with high-rise buildings, and the facades are always cold glass or metal.
Cities such as New York, Tokyo, Hong Kong, and Chongqing often become "sacred places" for cyberpunk fans because of their visual elements.
At the same time, due to the dystopian color of cyberpunk itself, the city will also have a decadent street scene like a slum in contrast to the tall buildings, and the streets are dark and dirty. These are the places where secret transactions in cyberpunk fiction often take place.
△The slums in the movie "Ready Player One"
Cybermen and Robots
With the development of information technology, biotechnology, gene technology, and artificial intelligence, the cyberspace of the future will often be populated by a large number of modified humans and robots, even without physical AI. And due to the high degree of globalization and the disintegration of countries, the world has become diverse, and the mixture of different races, robots and humans has become the norm in every city.
△ "Cyberpunk 2077"
Many people imagine cyberpunk as an unreachable future, but if we pay attention to the current technological development, we will find that cyberpunk is an imagination of the near future. In a sense, our life has begun to "cyborgize".
What will the cyber culture industry look like?
Since the birth of the cyberpunk style, it has been used as the subject matter of a large number of literary works and film and television works. Driven by them, people began to accept and even admire this worldview and aesthetic style, and a large number of cyberpunk style products came into being.
One category is electronic products full of futuristic sense of technology. For example, this customized version of "Cyberpad" launched by Russian luxury manufacturer Caviar
There are also some headphones and keyboards designed to look cyberpunk.
Another category of cyberpunk-influenced products is clothing. Many big fashion brands have added cyberpunk elements to fashion design.
The pursuit of cyberpunk gave birth to its derivatives - "techwear". "Techwear" clothing, like the cyberman's modified body, pursues functionality and technological beauty. They have high-quality technical enhancement designs that are also avant-garde and modern.
Representative brand ACRONYM
However, most of the products on the market only borrow the concept or visual characteristics of cyberpunk, and are not considered real cyberpunk, and the development of technology and society is far from the stage of the cyberpunk world. Therefore, it is difficult to accurately judge what form the cultural industry will take at that time. However, based on the current level of technology, the development trend of the Internet, and some literature and film and television imaginations, we can infer several characteristics of future cultural products.
All cyberpunk works will create a virtualized world, where humans can act in the digital world as virtual identities by accessing the Internet. Perhaps most of future cultural products will be presented in the form of virtualization, such as through some wearable devices to achieve the effect of augmented reality (AR).
In addition, virtual idols may also become mainstream. Future idols may be generated according to everyone's needs, they can better satisfy the cultural creativity of fans and bring more pleasure in chasing stars. At present, this trend is already very obvious.
△Movie "Blade Runner 2049"
At that time, cultural products will not only stay in the visual or auditory sense, but will enter the immersive mode of multi-sensory linkage. The continuous upgrading of VR technology will continue to change the existing entertainment methods, and the virtual world of "Ready Player One" may become a reality.
The cultural industry has always been criticized by cultural scholars for its mass production methods, but in the future society, artificial intelligence, 3D printing technology, and virtual reality technology will develop to a certain level, and after the manufacturing industry is greatly upgraded, cultural products and content will be completely It may gradually shift from standardization and mass production to personalized and diversified production. Cultural consumption will generally become a personalized and customized consumption mode, and cultural products, especially virtual products, will also be customized according to consumers' preferences or needs.
Although this article has made many entertaining interpretations of cyberpunk, just like the dark corners of cybercity, cyberpunk itself is pessimistic and gloomy. "High tech, low life" is the core concept of cyberpunk. Here, instead of improving the quality of human living space, it has become dilapidated. Humans in the cyber world paralyze themselves through biological transformation, and escape reality by entering the virtual world. All in all, cyberpunk is dystopian, a technological nightmare where matter devours the mind.
However, the cyberpunk world is not the only destination for technological development. Perhaps we should always be vigilant, but we can also remain optimistic. Cyberpunk aesthetics have once again swept the fashion circle in recent years. It pays homage to the classics while also looking to the future. The collision of classic nostalgic sense of time and future magic, good expectations for the future and fantasy of advanced technology. Styles come and go, but artistic talent remains forever.