Video game hacking for people who like movie hackers

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Hacking video games that combine realistic hacking gameplay with storytelling and film-style elements, from Midnight Protocol to Hacker Simulator.

There’s real life computer hacking – the trial and error that looks for loopholes in network security and tricked people into giving up their passwords – and then there’s the computer hacking that can be seen in Hollywood movies hacker and video games like Guard dogs 3where “black hat” programmers with trendy clothes and goofy aliases can crack any server or hijack any television screen by typing really fast on their keyboard. Midnight Minutes, Hacknet, and other computer hacker-centric video games incorporate both the reality and fantasy of computer hacking into their gameplay, and generally simplify the principles of real-world computer programming into a more accessible, fun form.


In the real world, computer hacking isn’t visually exciting. Most computer hackers, be they white hat or black hat behavior, spend hours, if not days, digging through lines of computer code looking for glitches, bugs, or security holes that could be broken into on secure networks and server. In other situations, they could use server farms to perform brute force “hacks” like DDOS attacks – which stalled World of Warcrafts Server in early 2021 – or use tools like phishing emails or malware to get hold of people’s private information. All of these realistic forms of hacking are difficult to entertain on television or in video games.

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Some of the following hacking video games attempt to portray the discipline / lifestyle of computer hacking in an authentic, if dramatized, way while others tend to be more inclined to do so Cyberpunk 2077-like pattern puzzles or mini-games in which the player shoots abstract polygons in “cyberspace”. The advantage of these stylized forms of hacking is that players don’t need a degree in computer programming to play these games – just pattern recognition, observation, and a willingness to dig through the digital dirty laundry of digital people.

The Midnight Protocol turns gamers into hacktivists

Midnight Minutes Cover Art

In the hacking game Midnight Minutesthe players slip into the role of a hackitivist, whose personal data is passed on to the police. Determined to discover the identity of their “Doxxer”, the player character plunges into a rabbit hole full of secrets, conspiracies and tough moral decisions. The branching choice narrative of Midnight Minutes is generally delivered to players through fictional emails and text messages, while the corporate / government databases the PC is hacking into are represented by a gameplay mode in which players hop between different nodes on a network and use keyboard commands, around “ICE” barriers in a. to break through turn-based “battle mode”.

Hacknet is a hacking simulator with a puzzle to solve

Hacknet, a hacking simulator game with mysterious elements released by Team Fractal Alligator in 2015, is about a protagonist who receives posthumous emails from a notorious computer hacker and asks the PC to uncover the truth behind his untimely death. The terminal-based game mechanics of Hacknet gradually immerse players in a simplified version of real hacking; A number of mod tools in the Steam Workshop allow fans to design their own “hacking missions”, while an educational version on itch.io has been developed to teach gamers and CompSci students real UNIX commands and cybersecurity principles.

Hacker Simulator gives players a realistic hacking experience

Hacker simulation video games hacker simulator

Hacker simulator, which was recently released on Steam in October, has two game modes. In the first game mode, players use simplified versions of real-world hacking strategies such as looking for exploits, sending phishing messages or using special “brute force” programs to discover passwords through a cascade of random guesses.

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The other game mode of Hacker simulator is a first person crafting game system where players gradually build their own bespoke “hacking den”, buy new hardware, organize their server towers, and constantly switch between new Wi-Fi networks to go undetected.

Nite Team 4: Military Hacking Division

Hacker simulation video games Nite Team 4 Military Hacking Division

Most computer hacking focused games put gamers in the position of lone hackers or Guard dogs 3-Style rebel collectives. Nite team 4: Military hacking department, Conversely, it tells the story of a cybersecurity specialist who was hired by the secret services to track down criminals through surveillance, conduct cyber war operations, and even coordinate military operations and raids. The terminal-focused gameplay of Nite team 4: Military hacking department, currently available on Steam, focuses on entering Kali Linux-inspired commands into terminals, and also has an “Alternative Reality” mode that allows players to achieve in-game goals by visiting websites and phone numbers outside of the game call.

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Sources: Steam – Hacker Simulator, Steam – Nite Team 4: Military Hacking Division, itch.io

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