|“||Once you were just a Cyberpunk. Now you're an Edgerunner||„|
— Cyberpunk v3.0
The setting has been heavily updated from the event from the Firestorm Series, which covered the opening of the Fourth Corporate War. The aftermath of the Fourth Corporate War has resulted in widespread corruption of the Net and major losses of hardcopied data, to the point that all data is intangible and recent recorded history is in doubt. An example that pops up in Pondsmith's demos at conventions, releases on the Internet, and in the finished game is that history has become so corrupted that many people in the world now believe Richard Nixon, instead of resigning over Watergate, committed suicide on camera and that memes such as the moon landing being hoaxed become prevalent. The war has also led to the collapse of nations, the world economy, and many of the staple megacorporations. This civil upheaval leads to the rise of the "altcults", alternative cultures similar in vein to the "phyles" from Neal Stephenson's The Diamond Age.
Many fans expressed their disappointment with the third edition, citing the drastic change of setting and style as well as the use of action figures in place of more traditional art work. Author Mike Pondsmith used 1:6 scale action figures, of which he was a collector of at the time, in lieu of the hand drawn artwork seen in the previous editions. Players also took fault in the shift in setting, the introduction of the alt-cults and the DataKrash, destroying virtually every piece of paper on the planet.
As a result of Cyberpunk 2077, Mike Pondsmith has said that V3.0 has since been retired and many elements may be recycled in Cyberpunk Red. While the specifics have not been made clear, it is implied that Johnny Silverhand survived and the Arasaka Nuke was not detonated.
- Beyond the Edge: Inside the Edgerunner Altcult
PONDSMITH, M. Cyberpunk v3.0, 1st ed. Berkeley CA; R.Talsorian Games, 2005