No science fiction game would be complete without a few robots, so here is an introduction to the subject as handled in FSpace. It begins with a short discourse on the diversity of constructs which fall under the title of 'robot' - fascinating reminder of the range that could be imagined, marred by a very heavy image behind the text that makes it rather hard to read. Robots range from automated factories to human-form constructs given the appearance of sentience by programming, artificial intelligence and downloaded skills. Some are suitable for use as player-characters, and the interesting suggestion is made that a remote-operated robot might be a novel avatar for a character.
Most of the rest of the book consists of the details of a variety of robots to be found in the worlds of FSpace. They range from space construction 'bots to robotic riding animals, surveillance and security and even toys. Other specialised but useful ones include a self-mobile searchlight, a camera capable of professional-standard work, and an android domestic servant. Needless to say the military has been very interested and there's a range of combat and recon models to choose from.
Each one comes with about a page of description, game statistics and an illustration. There are a few slips that a thorough proof-read would have caught. The ideas will be useful whatever game you play, although statistics are, of course, aimed at the FSpace player. Overall this is a fascinating glimpse of the sort of robots likely to be developed by the 22nd century. However a bit more on robot design, both in terms of the alternate reality of the game and in game mechanical rules, would have improved this greatly, but as a catalogue of some common ones it's excellent.
Return to Robot Guide v1.0 page.
Reviewed: 10 January 2009