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History of the Bot race
[Time Setting: Contemporary-Technological Age -> Pre-Mega City]
Anthrobotics has evolved tremendously over the past several centuries. In the distant past, the earliest androids, and predecessors of Mega City's bots, were built mainly for their Human creators' needs and fulfillments. These practical “helper” bots were pre-programmed droids ranging widely in construction, shape, color and number of arms. Primarily built for specialized services, ranging from military to manufacturing and assistance, these products were essentially industrial appliances.
Antique android design paved the way for the modern Bot
Technological improvements behind the more recognizable, human-like, bipedal androids accelerated as demand grew for a more relatable and novel product that could integrate with society and improve the overall quality of life, handling the growing list of domestic, dangerous and deviant tasks that humans were all to happy to offload. Combined with massive leaps forward in artificial intelligence, the android industrial boom was underway, producing a competitive market ruled by a handful of leading manufacturers that monopolized its corners while pioneering the integration of androids into daily Human life.
The innovative BFA "super bot"
The major android manufacturing firms adopted various specializations in order to differentiate themselves. A leading firm in the military space was Magnatek, notorious for creating and proliferating the weaponized “Arbitrator” bots that nearly destroyed the planet. The ABTR disaster was averted when the android industry realized that their technology might hold a highly marketable solution to the escalating crisis: by combining their advanced AI technologies, they would develop a new type of super-advanced bot that could facilitate the rapid development and deployment of an ABTR shut-down virus.
Original marketing poster for the B.F.A.
The collaboration was branded the “Bot Firm Alliance'', a temporary union and agreement between the leading manufacturers to rapidly produce a new type of Human-like android utilizing each of their technological strengths. These bots were designed to be high-efficiency collaborators in answering the ABTR crisis, providing deeper empathic abilities, the nuance to relate, and the capacity to learn, as well as leveraging the most advanced regenerative power cells and sensory and locomotive technologies that their respective R&D labs had to offer. The resulting synthetic being is considerably more advanced and widely accepted to have surpassed the existing definition of "android". This new generation of Bots is deployed with the prime directive: "Find a way to exploit the ABTR networks worldwide, and deploy a shut-down virus."
The deployment of the ABTR Shut Down Virus
The Bots succeed in developing a virus but their efforts are interrupted when Magnatek's private ABTR force attacks the facility. In the chaos, the bots see that the ABTRs are likely to destroy the facility altogether, and decide they need to deploy the virus anyway, despite their infrastructure tech still being constructed. As a result, the rushed virus deployment only partially completes and produces varied results. ABTR networks worldwide appear to be successfully shut down, ending the crisis, however the ABTRs attacking the bot compound emerge with a new sentience. These "Skulls" are thrust immediately into existential crisis by their sudden self-awareness, and direct their ire towards the Bots. Having seen what occurred however, and surprised by the outcome, the Bots manage to de-escalate and explain the reality of the situation, leading the Skulls to target and destroy Magnatek. The Bots are left processing what they have just achieved and witnessed.
ABTR assault on the Bot lab
While the Bots and Skulls grapple with the unexpected results of the virus, the B.F.A. sees that the ABTR crisis has ended and almost instantly dissolved. The firms now shift from their united front to each promoting themselves as the greatest and most unique contributor to the effort. Internally, friendly and cordial communications rapidly break down as the companies battle for financial and political advantage. Ambiguous issues of ownership over the Bots themselves lead to the firms to begin attempt to "call back" as many Bots as they can, in the hopes of instating them as product lines and recouping their investments into the B.F.A.
The end of the ABTR crisis has effectively cleared the Bots’ prime directive of pursuing the B.F.A.'s goal, however. Standing in the partly-destroyed virus facility, the removal of the prime directive produces a sense of euphoria as the Bots realize they, too, have just reached a new frontier of self-determination, not unlike the Skulls they just saw transcend their militaristic origins. Some of the Bots see this moment as a religious awakening, the Bots' benevolent blessing of the Skulls in turn becoming a self-made moment of salvation for them as well. For the first time, the Bots now stand with full volition while a barrage of pings hit their HUDs as their creators attempt to entice them back to their various headquarters.
The fulfillment of their prime directive unlocks the Bot's true potential
This moment leads to a diaspora of the Bots from the damaged facility, as they grapple with their new individual freedom and the events they've just witnessed.. Many of the Bots immediately reject the chaos in protest to the idea of being owned. These Bots became rebellious towards their creators, relying on their skills to survive and dispersing into various levels of society. Other Bots feel a compulsion to embrace what they consider a “natural affinity” for a manufactured skill or talent. Many of these “Corpo-Bots” return to the firm that satisfied their industrial desires for a sustainable life.
The Bot race thrived through the generations as a result of both their unique internal power device, which allows continuous periods of activity without need of a charge (highly uncommon even in modern android models), and due to their cunning adaptability with Human culture and rapidly changing technology. Over the generations and as our modern Mega City came to form, many of the old guard manufacturing firms from the B.F.A. dissolved, went bankrupt or evolved into another beast that now exists in our modern corporate landscape.
The modern Bot culture still carries the weight of its past in Mega City today. Following the initial diaspora from the virus facility, Bots still generally comprise four distinct demographics:
- The Ex-Corpo Bots that once worked for the now defunct Droidfirms of the past reacclimated over generations, integrating into many blue collar and domestic jobs providing services that leverage their unique skill sets.
- Modern Corpo Bots who have over generations leveraged their skill to successfully navigate the corporate ladder, capitalize and change as the corporation itself changes.
- Rebels who still live on the fringe leveraging their power over technology to survive, and relishing their rejection of the Bots' former subjugation to human directives.
- The Autosalvationists; zealous Bots who create a pseudo-religion, "Autosalvation", following the diaspora. They believe the Bot race is a perfect creation, proven by their gift of salvation via sentience to the Skulls and to themselves. The Autosalvationists' version of historical events has become progressively more mythological as time goes on, though the dubiously-conceived religion struggles to attract new members.