In Drugs & Wires by Mary Safro (A.K.A. Cryo) and Io Black, readers are given a glimpse of a alternate history 1995, where cranial-implant VR users enhance their experiences using drug cocktails even as the streets are ravaged by packs of wild dogs.
With all of the debauchery you’ve come to expect from dystopian cyberpunk, Drugs & Wires will not be for everyone, but for readers looking for a well-developed and sprawling story with incredible world building, you’ll want to give the comic a look!
Dosing for the Dreamspace
As explained by the webcomic’s Wirepedia (that’s right, the webcomic has its own on-site wiki – I wasn’t messing around when I said “world building”), the Dreamspace is a commercialized software that allows users to entered a shared VR space.
A “mindtripper” is a person who uses Dreamspace, and an “operator” is someone who creates content for other mindtrippers to enjoy (which can be recorded or interactive).
But here’s where the drugs come into play: for a variety of reasons, including technological limitation and bad network connections, what is envisioned by the operator and what is experienced by the mindtripper. In order to compensate for this discrepancy, operators take drug cocktails to heighten their sensations (and by extension, create better Dreamspace content).
And this is just the tip of the world building iceberg. There’s also Wirepedia pages on licenses for body modification, the implants necessary for entering the Dreamspace, and a whole backstory comic about Dreamspace (which you can read here, although do be forewarned that it does have some flashing animation).
Uploading Drug & Wires now…
With several years worth of stories already uploaded (including multiple distinct chapters), now is the perfect time to get into Drugs & Wires. You can support the comic directly through the Patreon page, and if you’d prefer to read the comic on its own website rather than via Tapas, you can do so here.
Will you be checking out Drugs & Wires? Let The Beat know, either on social media @comicsbeat or in the comment section!