Robotics Expansion - Mech Update (long)



  • Here’s what I’ve been cooking up for a Robotics expansion, let me know what people think. An expansion, rather than an overhaul, essentially just adds new content instead of replacing stuff. It’s much safer codewise and can be easily removed if people don’t like it. It would not edit any current Robotics code except a minor tweak to the View Stats exosuit page.

    Robotics as it stands would be unchanged, for one. You still build mechs, robots, and require research as usual.

    However, one big change is in how mechs work. Rather than have 3 slots for equipment in each mech, you would instead have either 5 or 6. One item can fit in each body part of the mech, therefore mechs without a head slot (Ripleys) would not be able to fit head items.

    Each slot fits a certain list of mech tools. The existing items are divided up between certain slots, but they would not require being edited due to some code trickery I designed (nobody likes having to go back and edit every single mech item). You build the item, and when you go to normally install the item, you select the body part on the targetting icon (head, arms, torso, legs) and it will install the item in that slot. If it’s already got an item in that slot, you have to remove it first.

    To remove an item from a slot, you would simply do as normal and use the View Stats screen to unequip it to drop it on the floor.

    Head items add either verb toggle or passive abilities. Torso items add verb toggle abilities or mech enhancements. Arm items are mostly functional tools, such as guns and drills, and leg items are all passive improvements. Some tools are restricted to certain mech chassis but most are not.

    Now, here’s a list of items I’ve come up with and mostly coded already so far. Let me know if you have any more suggestions!

    Head Mechparts

    • Chameleon Module (Requires Illegal tech) (toggle)- When uninstalled, click on an object to scan it, can scan up to 3 objects. Installed in mech, allows the verb Activate Chameleon Module, which surrounds your mech in a hologram of it. Drains power significantly when active.
    • LED Flashlight (toggle) - A massive flashlight mounted in the mech’s forehead. Illuminates in a straight line 3 tiles wide in whatever direction the Mech is facing. Very low power drain.
    • Solar Panels (passive) - When in an area of high illumination, adds a very weak power regen. When in SPACE, adds very strong power regen.
    • MMI Module (passive/toggles) - This allows you to insert an MMI in the head slot. If the MMI Module is jettisoned so is the installed brain. When a brain is inside, the driver of the mech can use special verbs to allow or disallow the MMI certain functions of the mech. Ie. movement, turning, shooting, or control over a mech component.
      Note: Installing an MMI without an MMI head module will insert the MMI normally, allowing it full control over the mech and no human pilot.
    • AI Core Module (passive/toggles) (requires very high research/materials) - Allow installation of a carded AI into the mech. From there, the driver can toggle the AI’s wireless and check its laws. The pilot can also allow the AI control over the mech just like an installed MMI Module.
      Note: The way this works is the AI gets a new verb, ‘Pilot Mech’. When piloting the AI cannot use arrow keys to change camera views, and the “AI Core” button will instead zoom to the mech. Essentially works like an admin verb ‘possess’ toggle for the mech vs. normal AI commands.
    • Advanced Health Scanner (passive) - Adds all functionality of the Odysseus on-board health display, but also adds the ability to see living creatures through walls, similar to the Optical Thermals, but does not show cyborgs or dead bodies.
    • Targeting Array (passive) - When a person is clicked on with any arm tools activated, it “locks in” on that target. Damage to that target by mech weapons is improved and certain weapons will home in on them, even around corners (missile launchers mostly).
    • Communications Array (passive) - Functions like a mobile all-in-one comms setup, allowing for radio communication either when comms are down or in areas that do not have comms, such as in deep space.
    • Energy Relay (toggle) - As per the usual. This is one of the few tool items that does not go in the Arm slots.
    • EM Surge Protector (passive) - EM effects do not work on the mech or anything up to 3 tiles around. Very useful for working on the singularity.

    Torso Items

    • Armor Booster Module (ranged, melee) - As per the usual items.
    • Repair Droid (toggle) - As per usual
    • Plasma Converter (passive) - As per usual
    • ExoNuclear Generator (passive) - see above
    • Nav Jets (toggle) - A set of small navigational thrusters set into the mech’s back. Functions like a fire extinguisher for mechs in space; allows you to change direction basically. Requires power on each use. When toggled on, click a turf, and it will fire and then auto-untoggle.
    • Stealth Module (toggle, requires Illegal tech) - Allows the mech to shroud itself. Drains significant power when activated.
    • Reactive Armor Module (passive) - When hit by lasers, tasers, or electrical attacks, deals 0 damage to your mech and instead restores power to your battery.
    • Engine Parts Upgrade (passive) - Replaces engine parts with high-end components. Battery drains faster, but movement speed is dramatically increased.
    • Portable Syphon (toggle) - When activated, begins to drain air from the room exactly like a portable syphon. Gasses are stored in a small air tank which can be detached later.

    Arms Tools

    • All the usual mech equipment not listed on here already is used in arms. Guns, mech tools, portable sleepers, etc are all for Arms. Since there are 2 arm slots, that means you can equip up to 2 tools. Each is restricted as usual per mech chassis.
      Plus, new equipment:
    • Mech Flamethrower (Ripley, combat mechs only): Drains both battery power and internal air tank O2. Note that most mechs do not have particularly great heat resistance.
    • Mining Laser (Ripley): Fires a laser that hits squares in up to 4 turfs ahead of you that hits every tile. Does significant damage to people and objects but does not affect walls or doors. Cuts through asteroid walls instantly. High energy cost.
    • Sonic Emitter (Ripley): Emits a pulse of sound in all adjacent squares from the mech. Knocks back + brute damages living creatures (NOT knockdown), instantly cuts through all asteroid walls in adjacent squares. Moderate energy cost.
    • Mech Shield Emitter: Activates an industrial-sized Energy Shield that protects the mech from attacks in the same way. Drains energy while active, but has excellent protective capabilities. If you click on a person while this is active, it will instead generate a personal shield around them for a short duration.
    • Mech Energy Axe (combat): As might be expected, it is an e-axe for mechs. Drains energy while active. Can cut through normal walls.
    • Mech Energy Sword (combat): As above, but does a bit less damage.
    • AGL-9 Incendiary Launcher (combat): An upgrade to the Grenade Launcher. Fires incendiary rounds that burst in small clouds of napalm.
    • MRM-12 Missile Pod (combat): An upgrade to the Missile Launcher. Fires short-range heatseeking missiles that home in on the nearest target. With a Targetting Array installed in head, they will instead home in on the designated target. Fires very quickly.
    • X-19 Blast Mortar (combat): An experimental heavy artillery upgrade. Fires the equivalent of small bombs. Can destroy tiles in a 2-3 tile radius.
    • Ramming Arm (any): Can ram open closed doors (not bolted ones), smashes through window + grille + window in one hit, can hit people to do massive brute damage + knock them back up to 4 tiles away.
    • AC 44 Heavy Rail Cannon (combat): An upgrade to the AC2 autocannon and AC10 scattershot. Functionally similar to a L6 SAW.
    • Manipulator Arm (any): Allows the mech to pick up and drop one object without the pilot getting out. In addition, allows you to press wall buttons and fire alarm buttons, and grab/strangle people.
    • NCE-4 Grappling Hook (any): Fires a grappling line to a nearby object, turf, or person. If its a turf or the object is immobile, drags the mech towards it once the line has launched; otherwise pulls the targetted thing towards the mech. Long reload time.

    Leg Items

    • Reinforced Leg Armor (any): Slows the mech down, but greatly increases its defensive strength across the entire mech as well as increases its fire resistance.
    • Tool Compartments (any, special): Each Tool Compartment allows the mech to carry 2 unused mech tool parts. Using a panel that appears when you use the Tool Compartment verb, you can swap out any currently equipped mech item for a stored one. Drains power on each swap and has a long reload.
    • Hover Pod (any): When used on a single leg, this increases its speed slightly. However, when both legs have Hover Pods installed, allows the mech to move at extremely quick speeds and in space. Requires significantly more energy on each turf moved, and the mech can be dragged by people. In addition, if the pilot with harm intent on  “punches” someone who is already on the ground, it will instead fire the jets at them and incinerate them.
    • Electroceramic Magnets (any, toggle): Functions similar to Magboots. However, when in space the mech can not move beyond 1 tile away from structures or turfs. Ie. it is impossible to move away from walls and cast yourself adrift. Makes the mech immune to all pulls, including the sing. If both legs are installed with magnets, when activated they drag in nearby metal items, similar to Magnetitis disease.
    • Improved Hydraulics (any): Improves the movement speed of the mech, but not to the extent of Hover Pods. Does not drain extra power.

    That’s about all I can think of off the top of my head.

    This set allows for much more versatile and variable mechs, I think. For example, let’s say you wanted to make a Search & Rescue specialized Odysseus, you would probably add:
    Head: Advanced Health Scanner
    Torso: Nav jets
    Arms: Portable Sleeper, NCE-4 Grappling Hook
    Legs: Tool Compartment, Improved Hydraulics

    In addition someone also suggested what I’ve called a Personal Exosuit: In effect, it is a hardsuit that is worn on the body that you build in the Robotics Fabricator. It comes with a single arm slot for equipment, and when worn, replaces the item in one of your free hands with that tool. However, unlike regular body armor it also requires a power cell and can run out fairly quickly; if it runs out you must remove the suit or you are immobile.



  • Here’s what I’ve been cooking up for a Robotics expansion, let me know what people think. An expansion, rather than an overhaul, essentially just adds new content instead of replacing stuff. It’s much safer codewise and can be easily removed if people don’t like it. It would not edit any current Robotics code except a minor tweak to the View Stats exosuit page.

    Robotics as it stands would be unchanged, for one. You still build mechs, robots, and require research as usual.

    However, one big change is in how mechs work. Rather than have 3 slots for equipment in each mech, you would instead have either 5 or 6. One item can fit in each body part of the mech, therefore mechs without a head slot (Ripleys) would not be able to fit head items.

    Each slot fits a certain list of mech tools. The existing items are divided up between certain slots, but they would not require being edited due to some code trickery I designed (nobody likes having to go back and edit every single mech item). You build the item, and when you go to normally install the item, you select the body part on the targetting icon (head, arms, torso, legs) and it will install the item in that slot. If it’s already got an item in that slot, you have to remove it first.

    To remove an item from a slot, you would simply do as normal and use the View Stats screen to unequip it to drop it on the floor.

    Head items add either verb toggle or passive abilities. Torso items add verb toggle abilities or mech enhancements. Arm items are mostly functional tools, such as guns and drills, and leg items are all passive improvements. Some tools are restricted to certain mech chassis but most are not.

    Now, here’s a list of items I’ve come up with and mostly coded already so far. Let me know if you have any more suggestions!

    Head Mechparts

    • Chameleon Module (Requires Illegal tech) (toggle)- When uninstalled, click on an object to scan it, can scan up to 3 objects. Installed in mech, allows the verb Activate Chameleon Module, which surrounds your mech in a hologram of it. Drains power significantly when active.
    • LED Flashlight (toggle) - A massive flashlight mounted in the mech’s forehead. Illuminates in a straight line 3 tiles wide in whatever direction the Mech is facing. Very low power drain.
    • Solar Panels (passive) - When in an area of high illumination, adds a very weak power regen. When in SPACE, adds very strong power regen.
    • MMI Module (passive/toggles) - This allows you to insert an MMI in the head slot. If the MMI Module is jettisoned so is the installed brain. When a brain is inside, the driver of the mech can use special verbs to allow or disallow the MMI certain functions of the mech. Ie. movement, turning, shooting, or control over a mech component.
      Note: Installing an MMI without an MMI head module will insert the MMI normally, allowing it full control over the mech and no human pilot.
    • AI Core Module (passive/toggles) (requires very high research/materials) - Allow installation of a carded AI into the mech. From there, the driver can toggle the AI’s wireless and check its laws. The pilot can also allow the AI control over the mech just like an installed MMI Module.
      Note: The way this works is the AI gets a new verb, ‘Pilot Mech’. When piloting the AI cannot use arrow keys to change camera views, and the “AI Core” button will instead zoom to the mech. Essentially works like an admin verb ‘possess’ toggle for the mech vs. normal AI commands.
    • Advanced Health Scanner (passive) - Adds all functionality of the Odysseus on-board health display, but also adds the ability to see living creatures through walls, similar to the Optical Thermals, but does not show cyborgs or dead bodies.
    • Targeting Array (passive) - When a person is clicked on with any arm tools activated, it “locks in” on that target. Damage to that target by mech weapons is improved and certain weapons will home in on them, even around corners (missile launchers mostly).
    • Communications Array (passive) - Functions like a mobile all-in-one comms setup, allowing for radio communication either when comms are down or in areas that do not have comms, such as in deep space.
    • Energy Relay (toggle) - As per the usual. This is one of the few tool items that does not go in the Arm slots.
    • EM Surge Protector (passive) - EM effects do not work on the mech or anything up to 3 tiles around. Very useful for working on the singularity.

    Torso Items

    • Armor Booster Module (ranged, melee) - As per the usual items.
    • Repair Droid (toggle) - As per usual
    • Plasma Converter (passive) - As per usual
    • ExoNuclear Generator (passive) - see above
    • Nav Jets (toggle) - A set of small navigational thrusters set into the mech’s back. Functions like a fire extinguisher for mechs in space; allows you to change direction basically. Requires power on each use. When toggled on, click a turf, and it will fire and then auto-untoggle.
    • Stealth Module (toggle, requires Illegal tech) - Allows the mech to shroud itself. Drains significant power when activated.
    • Reactive Armor Module (passive) - When hit by lasers, tasers, or electrical attacks, deals 0 damage to your mech and instead restores power to your battery.
    • Engine Parts Upgrade (passive) - Replaces engine parts with high-end components. Battery drains faster, but movement speed is dramatically increased.
    • Portable Syphon (toggle) - When activated, begins to drain air from the room exactly like a portable syphon. Gasses are stored in a small air tank which can be detached later.

    Arms Tools

    • All the usual mech equipment not listed on here already is used in arms. Guns, mech tools, portable sleepers, etc are all for Arms. Since there are 2 arm slots, that means you can equip up to 2 tools. Each is restricted as usual per mech chassis.
      Plus, new equipment:
    • Mech Flamethrower (Ripley, combat mechs only): Drains both battery power and internal air tank O2. Note that most mechs do not have particularly great heat resistance.
    • Mining Laser (Ripley): Fires a laser that hits squares in up to 4 turfs ahead of you that hits every tile. Does significant damage to people and objects but does not affect walls or doors. Cuts through asteroid walls instantly. High energy cost.
    • Sonic Emitter (Ripley): Emits a pulse of sound in all adjacent squares from the mech. Knocks back + brute damages living creatures (NOT knockdown), instantly cuts through all asteroid walls in adjacent squares. Moderate energy cost.
    • Mech Shield Emitter: Activates an industrial-sized Energy Shield that protects the mech from attacks in the same way. Drains energy while active, but has excellent protective capabilities. If you click on a person while this is active, it will instead generate a personal shield around them for a short duration.
    • Mech Energy Axe (combat): As might be expected, it is an e-axe for mechs. Drains energy while active. Can cut through normal walls.
    • Mech Energy Sword (combat): As above, but does a bit less damage.
    • AGL-9 Incendiary Launcher (combat): An upgrade to the Grenade Launcher. Fires incendiary rounds that burst in small clouds of napalm.
    • MRM-12 Missile Pod (combat): An upgrade to the Missile Launcher. Fires short-range heatseeking missiles that home in on the nearest target. With a Targetting Array installed in head, they will instead home in on the designated target. Fires very quickly.
    • X-19 Blast Mortar (combat): An experimental heavy artillery upgrade. Fires the equivalent of small bombs. Can destroy tiles in a 2-3 tile radius.
    • Ramming Arm (any): Can ram open closed doors (not bolted ones), smashes through window + grille + window in one hit, can hit people to do massive brute damage + knock them back up to 4 tiles away.
    • AC 44 Heavy Rail Cannon (combat): An upgrade to the AC2 autocannon and AC10 scattershot. Functionally similar to a L6 SAW.
    • Manipulator Arm (any): Allows the mech to pick up and drop one object without the pilot getting out. In addition, allows you to press wall buttons and fire alarm buttons, and grab/strangle people.
    • NCE-4 Grappling Hook (any): Fires a grappling line to a nearby object, turf, or person. If its a turf or the object is immobile, drags the mech towards it once the line has launched; otherwise pulls the targetted thing towards the mech. Long reload time.

    Leg Items

    • Reinforced Leg Armor (any): Slows the mech down, but greatly increases its defensive strength across the entire mech as well as increases its fire resistance.
    • Tool Compartments (any, special): Each Tool Compartment allows the mech to carry 2 unused mech tool parts. Using a panel that appears when you use the Tool Compartment verb, you can swap out any currently equipped mech item for a stored one. Drains power on each swap and has a long reload.
    • Hover Pod (any): When used on a single leg, this increases its speed slightly. However, when both legs have Hover Pods installed, allows the mech to move at extremely quick speeds and in space. Requires significantly more energy on each turf moved, and the mech can be dragged by people. In addition, if the pilot with harm intent on  “punches” someone who is already on the ground, it will instead fire the jets at them and incinerate them.
    • Electroceramic Magnets (any, toggle): Functions similar to Magboots. However, when in space the mech can not move beyond 1 tile away from structures or turfs. Ie. it is impossible to move away from walls and cast yourself adrift. Makes the mech immune to all pulls, including the sing. If both legs are installed with magnets, when activated they drag in nearby metal items, similar to Magnetitis disease.
    • Improved Hydraulics (any): Improves the movement speed of the mech, but not to the extent of Hover Pods. Does not drain extra power.

    That’s about all I can think of off the top of my head.

    This set allows for much more versatile and variable mechs, I think. For example, let’s say you wanted to make a Search & Rescue specialized Odysseus, you would probably add:
    Head: Advanced Health Scanner
    Torso: Nav jets
    Arms: Portable Sleeper, NCE-4 Grappling Hook
    Legs: Tool Compartment, Improved Hydraulics

    In addition someone also suggested what I’ve called a Personal Exosuit: In effect, it is a hardsuit that is worn on the body that you build in the Robotics Fabricator. It comes with a single arm slot for equipment, and when worn, replaces the item in one of your free hands with that tool. However, unlike regular body armor it also requires a power cell and can run out fairly quickly; if it runs out you must remove the suit or you are immobile.



  • Pretty cool.



  • Looks interesting.



  • Very cool and everything, but I fear its a wasted effort. Unless you somehow get the miners and scientists to do their job.
    At least on your average round i doubt you manage even to start building the parts before the shuttle has already left the station.

    Most of the time the round is over even before the robotics manage to get even a ripley built.
    I think you should have to address these issues somehow as well.

    Maybe give robotists a research room access as well, and make a new “special” ripley for mining.
    The “special” ripley is at the mining asteroid and cannot be DNA locked or transferred to the station, thus making it useless for people who just want an easy mech to robust things.



  • @Pyko:

    Very cool and everything, but I fear its a wasted effort. Unless you somehow get the miners and scientists to do their job.
    At least on your average round i doubt you manage even to start building the parts before the shuttle has already left the station.

    Most of the time the round is over even before the robotics manage to get even a ripley built.
    I think you should have to address these issues somehow as well.

    Maybe give robotists a research room access as well, and make a new “special” ripley for mining.
    The “special” ripley is at the mining asteroid and cannot be DNA locked or transferred to the station, thus making it useless for people who just want an easy mech to robust things.

    See, I don’t think that’s true at all. With the ability to buy sheets from cargo bay and the amount R&D + Robotics starts with it’s possible to build some very nice mechs. In addition, Roboticists can do their own research to get the required parts very quickly even without R&D doing anything. If I play Roboticist I can usually research, build, and complete a Gygax with energy drain, laser cannon, and repair module in about 15-20 minutes without any outside assistance whatsoever (and with only some minor B&E).



  • All well and good, but where’s the H.U.S.H. alternate mime mech variant for the H.O.N.K. like how you can turn the Ripley into a firefighter?



  • All this is nice and such, but things that require increased cooperation don’t generally do well. That and robotics isn’t necessarily in to terrible of a state. Also I imagine this would take a lot of programming and as is there are tons of things that could use total redo’s in order for people to even want to do base jobs I imagine that should be ahead of this. With current rates the time spent on that is super valuable.

    Things I would like to primarily see done before this is
    -Fix Guns

    -Make mining fun

    -Give Chaplin a medical hud and a spell system of some sort even if it generates points from healing others and randomly just picks items would be awesome.

    -Make researching in RD fun so someone wants to do it(Reduce interdependence also)

    -Your idea

    -Do anything with librarian


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