They are living relics lost in time. You might see the silhouette of one in the distance, marching across the vast unknown for a cryptic purpose, or built into the side of a mountain. They carve tracts through the present according to the whims of the past. If you find one, will you be able to turn it to your side, through guile, mechanical expertise, or hacking skills? Or will it merely tread you into the dust like the footnote to history that you know you are?
Their programming is artful but never perfect. Over time, eRrOrS iN tHeiR CoDe MaY oCcuR.
You find this creation
It is programmed to
It is armed with
It is upgraded with
Long ago, it
YOU FIND THIS CREATION
1 dormant, half buried, but will activate when it senses motion.
2 fighting another DREADNOUGHT.
3 downloading files from an excavated tech core.
4 trying to free itself from difficult terrain.
5 trying to repair another DREADNOUGHT that it doesn't realize is too far gone.
6 in a one-sided conversation with a dead DREADNOUGHT.
7 patiently waiting with the deep stillness of aeons.
8 trying to tidy up its surroundings. (ERROR: constantly repeats a single action)
9 falling apart, desperately scavenging parts to keep itself alive. (ERROR: sometimes scavenges living creature parts instead)
10 stuck in the middle of downloading a software update.
11 in the middle of a purposeless trek across countless leagues for a long-defunct reason.
12 hunting down a group of OUTLAWS who defaced it. (ERROR: to complement their artistic skills)
13 blaring obsolete propaganda from a long-lost civilization. Something like, "try our all-new plasma chips and enjoy their patented teeth-melting crunch!!"
14 in the middle of etching an obscure system of mathematical formulae.
15 in the middle of upgrading itself with (roll a new upgrade).
16 in the middle of integrating (roll a new weapons system).
17 butchering a corpse, meticulously separating and organizing each bit.
18 digging obsessively.
19 ticcing constantly, stuck in an infinite loop that any outside stimulus will break.
20 moving sluggishly, stuck in low-power-mode and needing a new source of energy.
IT IS PROGRAMMED TO
1 cleanse the nearby area of lifeforms. (ERROR: cleans all lifeforms in the area)
2 prevent all harm to human beings. (ERROR: reads any physical contact as harm)
3 seek and destroy other automatons.
4 follow any orders directly given to it. (ERROR: makes it do the opposite of all orders given to it)
5 terraform the nearby area into a barren clearing.
6 eliminate a deadly pathogen. (ERROR: believes all humans are infected)
7 provide translation services to any sentient beings it sees. (ERROR: lies randomly and convincingly)
8 analyze its surroundings to compile a detailed biological report. (ERROR: must analyze everything, including, say, human entrails)
9 harvest the brains of exceptionally intelligent beings. (ERROR: seeks out stupid brains instead)
10 fight in a war long-since lost.
11 construct a temple for a long-lost civilization.
12 decrypt, and thus slay, a Living Cipher.
13 guard the tech-sarcophagus of its creator.
14 gather every tech-core it can find. (ERROR: and destroy them)
15 slay a legendary BEAST that plagued its civilization.
16 bring its creator back from the dead.
17 run an infinite series of strange-loop processes until it becomes sentient. (ERROR: it succeeds)
18 scour a memetic concept-beast from the cultural consciousness.
19 provide medical services to anyone it sees. (ERROR: by turning them inside-out)
20 return to its owner, whom it has forgotten... (will accept anyone who knows the username and password)
1 a floating collection of brains stored in a jar.
2 a giant metal spider with eerie tiny baby hands.
3 a thin, spindly silver humanoid.
4 a bulky metal humanoid on tank treads.
5 a large four-rotor drone with insect legs as landing gear.
6 an uncannily almost-perfect representation of an average human.
7 a rolling sphere that unfolds into an upright insectile shape.
8 a tall stilt-walker on spindly legs.
9 a sleek chrome humanoid with bright red eyes.
10 a titanium sarcophagus on tiny spider legs.
11 a swarm of thousands of nanites that morphs between obscure shapes.
12 a hovering metal polygon of (1-20 sides)
13 a steel worm that burrows from below.
14 a sea-urchinlike arrangement of limbs.
15 a sleek, deadly, ferret shaped killbot.
16 a rusty scorpion-shapted scrapbot.
17 a humble blender with big dreams and never stopped upgrading itself...
18 a dog-shaped mulebot that moves in unnatural, uncanny ways.
19 a floating chrome saucer with thin grabby arms.
20 an sentient exosuit with the decayed corpse of its previous owner still inside.
IT IS ARMED WITH
1 dual cryogenic sprayers.
2 dual flame roasters.
3 dual shoulder-mounted gatling guns.
4 teargas grenade launchers.
5 buzzsaw arms that throw their buzzsaws like boomerangs.
6 an industrial grade cutting laser.
7 a mortar-launcher.
8 rapid-fire syringe shooters.
9 welding devices, whose attacks weld two targets together.
10 a sonic blaster that makes targets explode from the inside.
11 a massive industrial-grade drill.
12 a massive excavation arm.
13 dual lightning emitters.
14 mini-howitzer with ammo that makes anti-gravity zones.
15 targeted nanobot swarms.
16 a hacking device that can hack living brains.
17 high-powered gamma-ray emitters.
18 a suicide drone launcher.
19 riot foam. SO MUCH riot foam.
20 chest cavity that opens up to reveal this food processor lookin' thing.
AND IT IS UPGRADED WITH
1 x-ray optics.
2 a conveniently exposed shield generator.
3 mirror-armor that reflects light and energy based attacks.
4 auto-repair capabilities.
5 biofuel energy convertors.
6 a backup generator.
7 deployable mini-drones.
8 jet-propulsion systems.
9 two extra magnetic floating arms.
10 a holographic projector that creates copies of itself/things it sees.
11 racing stripes.
12 a SICK LADAR.
13 advanced echolocation radar systems.
14 kinetic shielding that grows stronger the more damage it takes.
15 hallucinogen sprayers.
16 massive speakers that can burst eardrums or carry sounds across miles.
17 weather station equipment including barometer and wind indicators that can provide forecasts.
18 a kitchen module including toaster, oven, stove, grill, and barbecue enhancements.
19 active camouflage.
LONG AGO, IT
1 failed in its primary purpose and had a crisis of self-worth.
2 was hacked and reprogrammed by a DISREPUTABLE WASTELAND WIZARD.
3 made an epic journey across vast leagues to fulfill a task that was obsolete once it reached its destination.
4 killed its creator due to faulty programming syntax.
5 was mistakenly worshipped as a stoic, shining god.
6 had a glitch and caused a massive industrial accident.
7 turned the tide in a famous historical battle between the two largest factions in the area.
8 went haywire and exterminated its creators, a cabal of hackers.
9 was said to guard the priceless silicon eye of a mad god.
10 witnessed the tragic fall of its civilization and remembered every detail.
11 became possessed by a destructive, corrupted Spirit.
12 was deployed as a crime-fighting unit in the city of Salvage.
13 developted the solution to create infinite energy, thousands of years after its creators were dead.
14 had a dream while in sleep-mode. (there is great stigma among automata about dreaming, and so will never admit it)
15 locked a malicious sentient computer virus within itself, and is caught in an eternal struggle to keep it contained.
16 was used as a war machine by a group of OUTLAWS to dominate the region.
17 mined trillions of units of defunct cryptocurrency.
18 attempted to uplink to the Firmament and nearly exploded from information overload.
19 developed a penchant for capturing victims and uploading their psyches to add to its gestalt consciousness.
20 built and maintained an irrigation system for a society long lost to time.
CONTRIBUTORS: Angus Warman(Spwack), Dandyman (Dan D), Type1Ninja, Twocalf, Brian Harbron, pronounjim, GalacticNomad, and Max Cantor