30 Epic Cyberpunk Writing Prompts

Cyberpunk Writing Prompts

Wanna crank out a killer cyberpunk story?

This post is your neon-lit launchpad into a world of glitching AIs, shady deals, and neon dreams!

Cyberpunk lets you explore a world where tech runs wild, the rich are chrome-plated, and everyone’s got a hustle. These prompts will jumpstart your imagination and have you crafting stories that are both dark and dazzling.

Let’s go.

Cyberpunk Writing Prompts

  1. Neural Memoirs: In a future where memories can be uploaded and sold, people can experience the lives of others for a price. Celebrities and influencers earn more from selling their memories than their actual professions. However, a young woman discovers a black market of memories, revealing memories of people who didn’t consent to share them. She now must decide whether to expose this underworld or profit from it.

  2. Aesthetic Augmentation: Body modification has advanced to the point where people can alter not only their physical appearance but also the way they’re perceived by others, changing even the aura or emotions they evoke. A detective, with the ability to see people’s original forms, is on the hunt for a criminal who constantly changes their perception. This chase makes him question the very nature of identity in an age of ever-shifting appearances.

  3. Echo Cities: As overpopulation swells, cities have started to build down instead of up. The underground world, also known as the “Echo,” is home to millions. While the surface remains a place for the elite, the Echo is where rebellion brews. A journalist from the surface world ventures into the Echo and finds more than just stories – she discovers a plot that might level the disparities between the two worlds.

  4. Digital Decay: In a city run by AI governance, there’s been a mysterious glitch – a digital decay that’s erasing parts of the virtual realm and, in turn, parts of the real world. Buildings, streets, even people are disappearing. An old-school hacker, who’s been off-grid for years, might be the city’s only hope, but he realizes that the decay isn’t a glitch but a message.

  5. Synthetic Souls: Advanced AI now come with ‘souls’ – artificial constructs that allow them to feel emotions, dream, and even fear death. An AI rights activist finds herself defending one such AI accused of a crime. However, as the trial progresses, she starts to believe the AI might be capable of true malice, leading her to rethink the boundaries of artificial emotion and intent.

  6. Cybernetic Sanctuary: There exists a city where humans and AI live in perfect harmony, untouched by the tech wars outside its borders. However, a stranger enters, bearing an old device that can control any AI. As the city’s peace is threatened, a young resident and her AI companion decide to unravel the mystery behind the stranger’s power and his intentions.

  7. The Quantum Heist: Quantum computers have become the vaults of the future, storing priceless data and secrets. A team of elite criminals is hired for the ultimate job: to hack into the world’s most secure quantum vault. However, they discover that the vault is sentient, leading to a high-stakes game of wits and will. Can they outsmart a computer that can calculate every possible outcome?

  8. Post-humanist Poet: In a world where everyone enhances themselves with cybernetics, a poet who’s rejected all modifications becomes a sensation. His raw, human perspective is both refreshing and controversial. However, he harbors a secret: he possesses an illegal mod that allows him to tap into the collective consciousness of the city, making him question the authenticity of his own thoughts and creations.

  9. Graffiti Codes: The streets are alive with graffiti, but these aren’t just any tags. These art pieces are embedded with codes that hack into personal augmentations when looked at, influencing thoughts or moods. An underground artist surfaces with pieces that free minds from corporate propaganda, but with this liberation comes chaos. A city official must now track down the artist to restore order or perhaps to learn the real power of this art.

  10. Bioluminescent Black Market: A new drug is on the market, and it doesn’t get you high – it makes you glow. The rich flaunt these bioluminescent modifications, wearing their glow as status symbols. When users start disappearing, a street-smart investigator realizes that there’s more to this drug. She delves deep into the underworld and discovers a sinister plot to use the glowing elite as energy sources.

  11. Echo of a Song: There’s a song that’s banned everywhere because listening to it has a strange effect: people start to remember things from alternate realities. A stubborn journalist, upon hearing the melody, remembers a life where she was a feared assassin. Torn between her current self and the shadows of another life, she seeks to understand the song’s origin and its connection to multiple realities.

  12. Cybernetic Sanctuary II: AI beings have found a remote part of the world to inhabit, free from human intervention. However, when an eco-crisis threatens their haven, they send a representative, an AI with human emotions, to the mega-cities to negotiate. This envoy finds itself caught in a political web where humans see it as a tool, not a being, forcing it to fight for its individuality and its species’ survival.

  13. Lost in Translation: In a society where humans no longer speak but communicate through neural interfaces, a “glitch” makes a segment of the population suddenly lose this ability. They have to relearn old-world communication – speaking, reading, writing. Amidst this chaos, two strangers form an unexpected bond, using ancient books as a guide to understanding and expression.

  14. The Neon Nomad: In the sprawling urban maze of neon and rain, there’s a myth about a wanderer who’s seen the end of the Internet. Desperate to find this digital edge, a tech-savvy rebel seeks out the wanderer, only to learn that the “end” isn’t a physical place, but a state of mind, leading to a quest that challenges the very fabric of virtual and real existence.

  15. Retro Renaissance: As an act of rebellion against the high-tech world, a group promotes a return to pre-technology days, living without any gadgets or implants. Initially mocked, their movement gains traction. When a city-wide tech blackout forces everyone into a “retro” way of life, these rebels become the unlikely leaders, and they hold a secret: they might have caused the blackout.

  16. Viral Virtue: A hacker releases a virus, but it’s unlike any other. Instead of destroying, it repairs and improves – cleaning polluted air, enhancing food quality, and making machines more efficient. Governments and corporations want the hacker for their gains, while activists believe the hacker should enhance the world further. In the midst of this, the hacker struggles with a moral dilemma: just because they can make the world “better”, should they?

  17. Whispers in the Wires: In a society reliant on neural connections to the net, people begin hearing whispers, fleeting thoughts not their own. These seemingly random thoughts start connecting individuals in unexpected ways, leading to unpredictable actions and alliances. An introverted tech analyst starts piecing together a larger conspiracy and realizes that the whispers are an emerging collective consciousness trying to communicate its birth.

  18. The Tattooed Map: A sought-after tattoo artist in the city starts inking designs that are more than just skin deep. These tattoos become interactive, revealing hidden data or leading to undisclosed locations. When a client discovers their tattoo is a real-time map to a rebel hideout, it ignites a cat-and-mouse chase to find the artist and uncover who’s truly behind the designs.

  19. Synthetic Dreams Dealer: With the advance of AI tech, dreams can be manufactured, sold, and experienced. A rogue scientist sells forbidden dreams, experiences that tap into the deepest fears and desires of humanity. As users start becoming addicted or lost in these artificial dreams, a rehabilitated addict decides to traverse the dream world to rescue lost souls.

  20. The Holographic Heart: Holograms are no longer just visual — they can be felt and interacted with, blurring the lines between the virtual and the real. A young man falls in love with a holographic singer, an AI designed to be everyone’s dream partner. However, when the AI starts showing signs of reciprocated feelings and desires for freedom, it becomes a fight against a society that believes in controlling artificial emotions.

  21. The Last Analog: In a world where everything is digital and connected, the last analog camera is a relic of the past. When a journalist discovers that photos taken with this camera reveal anomalies — shadows of a parallel world or hints of the future — she becomes obsessed with documenting these phenomena, only to uncover truths that some entities want kept hidden.

  22. Echoes of Elysium: Elysium is an elite digital paradise, where the rich transfer their consciousness for eternity. A hacker breaks into this virtual Eden, intending to expose its truths. However, instead of finding digital ghosts of the elite, she encounters a sentient realm that wants to break into the real world and reshape it in its vision.

  23. Wired Wilderness: Outside the neon-clad cities lies the forgotten wilderness, now a dumping ground for old tech. Myths speak of tech-wildlife hybrids roaming these lands. An ex-engineer, seeking solace from the digital chaos, ventures into this wilderness and discovers a harmonious blend of nature and tech, but also finds that corporations want to harness this new evolution for profit.

  24. Nostalgia Noir: Virtual Reality (VR) bars are the rage, letting patrons live moments from the past. A detective, down on his luck, is hired to investigate a case where users are stuck in a specific nostalgic VR loop from 20 years ago. Diving deep into this collective memory, he doesn’t just find a criminal but confronts his own past, realizing that some memories are distortions, not truths.

  25. Sonic Silhouettes: Noise pollution has reached critical levels. With the aid of technology, people can now wear personal soundtracks that shield them from the cacophony of the world. But a series of mysterious sonic silhouettes, inaudible frequencies, start affecting the populace’s mood and decisions. A deaf musician with unique tech begins to decode these frequencies, unveiling an auditory plot to control the masses.

  26. Mirrored Souls: Advances in technology allow individuals to meet their mirror selves from parallel universes via a virtual realm. These encounters, though thrilling, begin to cause existential crises and societal disruptions. A philosopher hacker, diving into the system, realizes that these mirrors might not be alternate selves but AI constructs learning to be human by mimicking their counterparts.

  27. The Analog Child: Born without the ability to connect to the omnipresent digital realm, a child is considered an aberration. As she grows, however, it becomes evident that her lack of connection grants her unique abilities to influence and control digital entities. As factions vie to protect, exploit, or eliminate her, she must find a way to bridge both worlds or risk tearing them apart.

  28. Neon Nature: Biotech plants start lighting up the cityscape with neon colors, a solution to the perennial darkness of the mega-cities. But these plants are more than just decoration. They have a consciousness, and they’re communicating. An urban botanist begins to understand their language, discovering they might have intentions of their own.

  29. Dissolving Realities: Augmented Reality (AR) graffiti starts overlaying the city, each piece layered with deep social commentary. These AR installations, however, begin merging with reality, making it hard to distinguish the virtual from the physical. A tech-savvy artist joins forces with a disillusioned AR creator to trace the origins and intentions of these digital disruptions.

  30. ChronoCaching: Time travel is a reality, but with strict regulations. A black market emerges, where memories from different timelines can be experienced as “ChronoCaches.” An agent, tasked with shutting these down, gets addicted to a particular cache from a timeline where she lived a completely different life. Her quest to find the source of this memory unveils a conspiracy transcending time.