Green alien characters on a black background stream down the screen (aka The Matrix code).

S3E5 Cyberpunk Inspiration

As we build momentum toward our Cyberpunk RED campaign, we take a moment to reflect on the cyberpunk movies, books, games, and other media that inspires our take on the subgenre.

We also talk National Novel Writing Month, hockey (yes, hockey), virtual gaming via NVIDIA GeForce Now, and the TaleSpire virtual table top.

Show Notes

Hockey Rink

  • Who knew the Lair had one?
  • Ken’s back to minor league hockey with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms.
  • And College Hockey via ESPN+ (so he can watch my daughter’s college compete without actually being there).

Virtual Game Room

The Writing Den

  • David’s doing National Novel Writing Month. aka NaNoWriMo.
  • What is it?
    • Starting November 1st you are challenged to write a 50,000 word short novel
    • The goal isn’t to get published, the goal is to do it and finish 50,000 words so you know you can do it
    • David’s written in the past, but always with someone else. Writing solo has always been intimidating.
  • David’s using this NaNoWriMo as a way to write badly but actually write.
  • As of this episode, David has written 1,384 words.

Main Topic: Cyberpunk Inspiration

  • What is cyberpunk, definition-wise?
    • Oxford Languages / Google says:
      • a genre of science fiction set in a lawless subculture of an oppressive society dominated by computer technology.
    • Wikipedia says:
      • Cyberpunk is a subgenre of science fiction in a dystopian futuristic setting that tends to focus on a “combination of lowlife and high tech”, featuring futuristic technological and scientific achievements, such as artificial intelligence and cybernetics, juxtaposed with societal collapse, dystopia or decay.
      • Much of cyberpunk is rooted in the New Wave science fiction movement of the 1960s and 1970s, when writers like Philip K. Dick, Michael Moorcock, Roger Zelazny, John Brunner, J. G. Ballard, Philip José Farmer and Harlan Ellison examined the impact of drug culture, technology, and the sexual revolution while avoiding the utopian tendencies of earlier science fiction.
  • What are our classic literary and cinematic touch points?
    • Novels
      • Hardwired by Walter Jon Williams
        • Inspiration for Cyberpunk RPG … but Ken never read it.
      • Neuromancer by William Gibson
      • Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson
      • The Diamond Age by Neal Stephenson
        • Is that Cyberpunk?
      • Altered Carbon by Richard Morgan
      • More cyberpunk books @ Nerd Much
    • Movies
      • The Matrix
      • Johnny Mnemonic
      • Max Headroom
      • Akira
      • Bubblegum Crisis
      • Ready Player One?
      • Tron and Tron Legacy?
    • Cyberpunk adjacent
      • Where does Bladerunner fit in?
      • Dredd?
        • 2300AD comics
        • Both movies
      • Robocop (original)?
    • What are our current touch points?
      • Cyberpunk Edgerunners
      • The Peripheral
      • Love Death + Robots
    • What about other generations?
      • What inspires you if you didn’t read Neuromancer? Or are just starting with the genre now?
    • Stuff we should watch
      • Ghost in the Shell
      • Black Mirror
    • What are our RPG touch points?
      • Shadowrun
    • Cyberpunk RPGs we haven’t played
      • Interface Zero (Savage Worlds)
    • What are our video game touch points?
      • Cyberpunk 2077
      • Shadowrun?


Thanks for listening. If you have feedback, we love feedback!. You can send it to us at or via Twitter @lairofsecrets. We stream this live on Twitch if you want to get your fix of things early and unedited. We are lairofsecrets, one word, over there. You can also visit and leave us some feedback, topic ideas, or your own thoughts on what we’ve talked about.

Featured Image Meta

The Matrix Code as seen in the now-vintage cyberpunk movie, The Matrix. Credit: Warner Bros.

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