Neo Cab is a stylish cyberpunk game about Lina, a human cab driver—possibly the last—living and working in the AI-controlled city of Los Ojos. But it's not a driving sim: Developer Chance Agency described it last year as "an emotional survival game about gig labor, tech disruption and the experience of being a driver-for-hire." That has me interested.
Today the studio announced that the game will debut on Steam on October 3, and revealed a little more about what lies behind your drive for a meager living and five-star ratings: Your friend has gone missing, and with no money or home, your only option is to keep picking up fares, learning their stories, and ultimately discovering the truth about your own.
"What are the merits of personal, human service and why are sterile, automated interactions often presented as a core part of utopia? In Neo Cab, Lina is one of the last human drivers, and so those who get into her cab are in need of the human touch," creative lead Patrick Ewing said.
"Some of her passengers will enjoy having a conversation while they get from Point A to Point B. Others might prefer that automated utopia, and see Lina as just another node in the service mesh of automated capitalism."
If you'd like a little more clarity about all this before you dive in, a demo is now available through Steam. I sunk a little time into it, picked up a few fares, got a feel for the basics of Los Ojos, and came away intrigued. It's a slow-moving affair and there are moments that make me wonder if it's all going to be a little too on the nose, but I want to keep driving.