Cool, I really like the mood very good scene and work on it! Only criticism is that yes, it is a bit dark or rather not lit in a way to emphasise what’s important in the scene. So my eyes were just moving about the image and not recognizing anything, so they frantically looked around and didnt settle on anything. In a scene you need at least one focus point, usually marked by light and also message/idea. So maybe you can play around with some highlights, and even if it’s still dark, make it look clear what the viewer should look at. Guide your viewers with your render. What do you want them to see first? What mood do you want to convey? What do you want to tell them? How do you want to make them feel? Once you answer these, you can play with light (maybe some object re-arrangement) and you can achieve what you need That’s what I have as tips for you from my own experience and collaboration with other artists from the industry. Good luck! Your scene has a lot of potential!
I’d also like to add that, the first focal point (after looking at the first render again) was the light slightly above the computer. I don’t think that’s an interesting focal point. The second one is the screen but it doesn’t speak much to me besides the blender logo (so far I don’t feel the Blade runner-esque mood). The problem I see further is that the surfaces are very dark, literally pitch-black so you’re losing a lot of detail and information. I don’t see the contact between the objects (which relays sense of depth and space). And honestly, the third render, I still look at it and am not sure what I see. A pipe?
Anyway, the right-hand side of the scene is dark, with no contact shadows/visible contact, highlight on surfaces (barely two or three, but minimal), so your scene gets lost like that, including all the work you put into it.
Looking at the improved render with added light from the window does make it look more recognizable.
I hope you don’t find my comment mean, because that’s not my intention. You put a lot of work, it’s clear, so I think your final effort should be the light. And trust me, lighting is pretty hard, although we all think we get it. I’m also a photographer with 10+ years of experience and have been learning a lot about the properties of light and the importance of correct lighting. In fact, light can pop-up or ruin a scene. The scene itself is neutral. The light gives the scene its true mood.
Sorry for the super long post I truly hope I am of help with it Seriously, great work and keep it up!!!