Cyberpunk 2077 slang is a confusing but vitally important element to the game. For players not familiar with the future slang of Cyberpunk, it can be alienating. And even within the cyberpunk genre, there is some contention as to what certain words mean.
Created by Mike Pondsmith and published by R. Talsorian Games, the Cyberpunk tabletop role-playing game is a wellspring of 1980s futurism. Much of the slang in Cyberpunk 2077 comes from the original tabletop RPG but draws from other sources as well. Films and anime like Bladerunner and Bubblegum Crisis, as well as the Walter Jon Williams 1986 novel Hardwired, all served as inspiration for the role-playing game.
While some of the Cyberpunk 2077 slang is pretty straight forward, much of it is fairly high science fiction. With this guide, players won’t feel like a gonk while trying to understand the slang. The world of Cyberpunk 2077 includes a huge amount of slang, so this list is not comprehensive, covering the words that are most relevant to players.
The lowdown on Cyberpunk 2077 slang
- Air hypo – A compressed air hypodermic injector, used to administer a wide range of drugs.
- Alien – Derogatory term for people who live in outer space.
- Apogee – The best. Comes from the Highriders, people who are born or live primarily in space.
- Benji – A cybernetic dog.
- Borg – A cyborg, someone who has gone under cybernetic enhancements. Often used as a derogatory term.
- Bourgie/Bourgy – Someone who is of low social standing. Used as a derogatory term based on the word “bourgeois”, which means someone who is middle class.
- Braindance – An immersive virtual reality simulation based on the real experiences of an individual.
- Chippin’ in – The act of installing cyberwear, often used for the first time someone does so. Also happens to be the name of a song by Johnny Silverhand.
- Chombatta/Choomba/Choom – Neo-African American term for a friend or family member.
- Corpo – Corporate employee as well as a lifepath option for players at the start of the game. Often used as a derogatory term for people who sell out to corporations.
- Dirty – Derogatory term for something low-tech or outdated, or not connected to the Net.
- Dorph – Synthetic endorphins, used as designer drugs to the user’s body. Often used to recreationally enhance performance.
- Dorpher/Dorphead – Drug addicts who have become dependent on Dorph. Also refers to gangs of individuals addicted to or sell Dorph.
- Edge – Related to something not commonly socially accepted, the fringes of society.
- Edgerunner – A person who is on the Edge. Someone whose lifestyle may be outside social norms or illegal.
- Eddies – Slang for Eurodollars, the most widely accepted currency in Night City. Established in the Treaty of 1992 with the formation of the European Economic Community. Also referred to as EDs.
- Gato – A cool person. Originates from the Spanish word for Cat.
- Gonk – An idiot.
- Kibble – Processed food that provides all the daily necessary proteins, vitamins, and minerals in the human diet. First created by a dog food manufacturer.
- Net – A term used to describe the vast telecommunications network of the future. Similar to the internet, the Net is more integrated into everyday life. Users can access the Net with cybermodems for an immersive, 3D experience.
- Netrunner – An ultimate hacker of the Net. Nethackers possess cybernetic enhancements that let them directly interface with the Net.
- Nomad – People who live in the Badlands outside Night City. Often nomads are former corpos who have been fired from their corporate jobs and have been left to travel in caravans of vehicles. A lifepath in Cyberpunk 2077.
- Ripperdoc – Medical practitioners who specialize in cybernetic implants. The slang specifically refers to doctors who operate outside the law and commonly accepted medical practices.
- Samurai – A corporate assassin or mercenary, often employed to protect corporate property. Also the name of Johnny Silverhand’s band.
- Screamsheets – The street term for digital newspapers.
- Vidiot – A person who is addicted to video games or virtual reality.
- Zeroed – To die or be killed.
With all the diverse and intricate lore in Cyberpunk 2077, it is easy to see how important the slang in the game is to giving Night City life. Make sure to check out our Cyberpunk 2077 ending guide for all the possible conclusions to V’s story.