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A simulacrum (plural: simulacrums or simulacra) is a robotic entity created using a human mind.

Lore[ | ]

Simulacra are a type of robot created based on a human being. Unlike a robotic entity such as a Spectre or MRVN that is simply a processor and code, simulacra use physical, biological tissue as its processor. As such, simulacra are described as being “somewhere between cyborgs and androids on the spectrum of organic to inorganic life.[1]

The development of simulacra first began in 2400, spearheaded by Hammond Robotics and the Mercenary Syndicate. Codenamed Project: Revenant, their aim was to preserve the mind of Kaleb Cross, one of the Syndicate’s most powerful assassins. They additionally created vast amounts of these chassis, allowing Cross to remain versatile while becoming easily dispensable. Hammond seemed to base their development on the chassis on the Spectre.[1]

During development, various issues arose. Firstly, a simulacrum would devolve into insanity when seeing another active version of itself and learning that it is not human. This issue was solved with the axiom that only one copy of a simulacrum could be active at once. Secondly, there was significant data degradation upon transfer between copies. The developers solved this by keeping Revenant’s “source code,” or his biological remains, as a remote processor. (However, future simulacra have their “source code” contained within them.) The first successful version of Revenant, as well as the first successful simulacrum, powered on in 2420.

To prevent a simulacrum from finding out the truth about their existence, they contain an “ego retention system” that causes them to believe that they are human. This system has a variety of effects. For example, if a simulacrum looks into the mirror, they will see their human face looking back at them. The ego retention system even goes as far as censoring spoken words, causing the simulacrum to hear what will reinforce the belief that they are human. For example, Ash’s ego retention system caused her to hear the word “simulacrum” as “Pilot”.[2] However, the ego retention system is not perfect, and can have defects such as the simulacrum’s human reflection lacking a tongue.[3]

A simulacrum’s ego retention system can be broken, allowing them to access their original personality and memories of their human life. However, this can also have disastrous effects, as they also receive the memories and pain of any deaths of their previous iterations.[4] Some simulacra can repress their old memories and personalities afterward.[2] Older ego retention systems seemed to be based on a physical system, which can be broken if thoroughly damaged.[4] Newer simulacra, however, contain special codes that when inputted or spoken will awaken their past self. Ash was awoken using a 20-digit number, but it is unknown if other simulacra use differing formats or lengths. This can be a dangerous process, however, as it has been described as “cracking an egg with a jackhammer.”[5] Additionally, transference into a simulacrum can be just as traumatic to the original psyche as waking up.[6]

Simulacra seem to be somewhat controversial in the public eye, with protests against Hammond Robotics’ continued development of them breaking out in 2708.[4] Regardless, there are companies that allow for individuals to become simulacra after death. To qualify, one must pass a psychological exam.[7]

Known Simulacra[ | ]

Trivia[ | ]

  • An excerpt from this article can be found at The Pylon on Storm Point.

References[ | ]