Startrodder Robots

Startrodder Robotic Architecture

Startrodder was, for its time, an innovator. In addition to the first to really mass produce fighters, they were one of the first to pioneer the idea of many robots that we see today. But as is often the case, prototypes are rarely the best.

When they created their original architecture, they focused their security programming on an unwavering devotion for the robot’s master, and a willingness to follow orders no matter what. They also focused on creating a deep devotion to organics in general. The result, when paired with the lower effectiveness of their more primitive neural networks, are robots that come across as gullible and naive. They tend to worship whomever their master is, and tend to believe anything anyone tells them. They will gleefully walk into certain death if ordered to do so, and believe that a planet is flat or that 2+2=5 if they are told it. They have less strict rules about following the law or speaking the truth, because the designers of the neural architecture assume that the dedication to humanity and their master would encourage them to tell the truth or follow the law. In practice, a Startrodder robot will happily lie or break a crime if their master orders them to do so. They tend to lack creativity too, which makes them highly predictable in their behavior: once a startrodder robot has hit upon a solution, they use that solution again and again. Taken together, Startrodder robots come across as very clever “dogs.” They adore their master, trust anything they say, and will happily, stupidly, go to their doom. This often leaves their owners feeling very attached to their robot, even if their robot is, objectively, dumb as a sack of rocks when compared with other robots.

The Redjack “obedient” personality architecture drew a lot of its inspiration from Startrodder’s design, but they placed a greater emphasis on self-reliance, creativity and independence. Most critics agree that Redjack robots are superior to Startrodder robots, and many owners of Startrodder robots remove the Startrodder neural network and replace it with a Redjack neural network. Still, some prefer the slavish devotion of a Startrodder robot, and Startrodder has been rolling out improved neural architecture that makes their robots as smart as other robots, though still not quite as creative as Redjack robots.

Startrodder Programming

-25 points
$5,000

Features: Resilient Traits (Admiration (Master), Selflessness, Sense of Duty (Master)); Limited IQ (8)

Disadvantages: Admiration (Master) [-1]; Hidebound [-5]; Honesty (Alliance Laws, 15 or less) [-5]; Pacifism (Cannot Kill, Alliance-Recognized Sapient Species Only -60%) [-6]; Selflessness (12) [-5]; Sense of Duty (Master) [-2]; Sincere [-1].

Startrodder Personality Programming

Common Advantages: Higher Purpose (Serve Master) [5], Daredevil [15], Fearlessness or Unfazeable [2/level or 15], Single Minded [5], Apply “Only when master is not in mortal peril -10%” limitation to Pacifism [2], Buy off Hidebound [5]

Common Perks: Attribute Substitution (IQ-based skill to Per or Will) [1], Brave [1], Focused (Task) [1], Honest Face, Good with (Children) [1], Good with (Master) [1], Purpose (“Make Master Happy”) [1]

Common Disadvantages: Absent-Mindedness [-15], Charitable [-15*], Chummy or Gregarious [-5 or -10], Clueless [-10], Curious [-5*], Delusion (“I can always trust humans”) [-5 or -10], Guilt Complex [-5], Gullibility [-10*], Impulsiveness [-10], Increase Honesty to 12 or 9 (-5 or -10], Oblivious [-5], Overconfidence [-5*], Sense of Duty (Any) [Varies], Increased Selflessness to 9 or 6 [-2 or -5], Remove the Alliance Recognized Sapient Species limitation from Pacifism [-9], Vow (“Always follow master’s orders, no matter what”) [-15].
Common Quirks: Attentive, Broad-Minded, Congenial, Delusion (“My human loves me”), Determined, Easily Influenced (Credulous), Easily Frustrated, Humble, Idealistic (“Humans know best!”), Inquisitive, Literal-Minded, Loud Voice, Low-Self Image (Only with working with non-Startrodder Tech), Mind-Numbing Magnetism (Enthusiastic or Playful), On the Edge (15; Only when master is in mortal peril) [-1], Preferred Tactic (Any), Record-Keeper (Detailed memories), Responsive, Shyness (only towards attractive or better humans), Soft-Spot (children; friends).

Common Personality Templates

Adoring [-5]: Good with Master [1] Gregarious [-10]; Idealistic (“Humans Know Best!”) [-1]; Higher Purpose (Serve Master) [5]

Clown [-5]: Impulsive (12) [-10], Mind-Numbing Magnetism (Playful) [-1]; Purpose (Make Master Happy) [1]; Not Hidebound [5].

Devoted [-5]: +1 Will [5]; Absent Minded [-15]; Attribute Substitution (Computer Operation on Will) [1]; Literal-Minded [1]; Single-Minded [5];

Foolhardy [-5]: Brave [1]; Daredevil [15]; Fearlessness +1 [2]; Impulsiveness (12) [-10]; Overconfident (12) [-5]; Pacifism (Does not apply when master is in mortal peril) [2];

Loser [-5]: Focused (Maintenance and repair tasks) [1]; Guilt Complex [-5]; one of Easily Frustrated or Low-Self Image (Only when working with non-Strodder Tech) both [-1]

Naive [-5]: Broad-Minded [-1]; Delusion (“I can always trust humans”) [-5]; Gullible (12) [-10]; Honest Face [1]; Unfazeable [15];

Startrodder Upgrades

Energy Reserves

23 points
Hardware Upgrade
Cost: $500

Startrodder robots often come with built in energy redundancies that they can draw on in times of need, allowing them to “redline” without causing nearly as many problems. This allows them to use Extra-Effort in combat, or extra effort while running, jumping, etc.
Drawing on these redundancies often triggers instabilities in their neural network however, or require those instabilities to trigger before the reserves can be tapped. Startrodder robots that draw on their reserves tend to become “highly emotional,” as non-engineers would describe the behavior: an “irritable” robots becomes angry, a sad robot becomes “morose,” an excitable robot becomes “ecstatic” etc. Those who anthropomorphise robots tend to see this as the robot “drawing on its emotions” for that additional burst of power or strength, failing to recognize it for what it really is: a regrettable fault in the neural architecture.

Advantages: Energy Reserve 8 (Fatigue) [24]

Quirk: Choose one of

  • Bad Temper (15 or less; Only when using Extra-Effort) [-1]
  • Guilt Complex (Only when using Extra-Effort) [-1]
  • Impulsiveness (15 or less; Only when using Extra-Effort) [-1]
  • Overconfidence (12 or less; Only when using Extra-Effort) [-1]

Substrate Upgrade

5 points
Hardware Upgrade
Cost: $10,000

Startrodder architecture runs on outdated neural networks, limiting Startrodder robots to IQ 6 or 8. While this is fine for many functions that the robot performs, modern users often expect a baseline intelligence on par with what Redjack or ARC produces. Startrodder has been offering, and creating, robots with superior architecture, but regrettably, it’s more expensive than just starting with a Rejadk architecture to begin with!

Advantages: Not Hidebound [5]

Feature: Replace Limited Trait (IQ 8) with Limited Trait (IQ 10) at no cost.

Startrodder Robot Templates

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