Who Can Legally Manufacture Androids?


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Ring_of_Gyges wrote:
Egyptoid wrote:
Please describe how this is unfair and unscrupulous.

Species without a sense of obligation to their children don't survive, so given time you end up with species that tend to care for their young. There are exceptions, but humans aren't one of them.

Humans without a sense of obligation to their children strike normal humans as monstrous. The idea that I owe nothing to a helpless, intelligent, living, thing I created is pretty psychologically aberrant.

That obligation turns around once they're old enough to work in the fields or the sweat shops, though.


Losobal wrote:

I don't think anyone in their right mind would manufacture an android, given the headaches. Especially with the hippie talk of "obligation? what obligation?! I didn't ask to be born, DAD."

I mean, who would bother? Better to make a robot that doesn't piss and moan about rights and have to worry about terrorists coming to mess you up because Android-Lives-Matter.

Well, hippie or not, bringing a sentient being to life to then give him the choice between starvation or doing work for you isn't what i'd call fair.

Although, you are right, if you want to get free labor, building a robot would probably be way more cost effective than having to deal with all the legal fuss that ''birthing'' an android imply.

Thing is, people can still have child for other reasons than having mini-slave, there's a lot of reasons, good and bad, for having a child and i don't feel like listing them, but i suspect people could create androids for, more or less, the same reason they have children.

I think it could even be a good alternative for parents who don't feel like raising someone from 0 to 18, but still have someone they can teach and lend their legacies to.


Losobal wrote:

I don't think anyone in their right mind would manufacture an android, given the headaches. Especially with the hippie talk of "obligation? what obligation?! I didn't ask to be born, DAD."

I mean, who would bother? Better to make a robot that doesn't piss and moan about rights and have to worry about terrorists coming to mess you up because Android-Lives-Matter.

I believe that is why most corps outside of Aballon have stopped the legal manufacture of androids. Also why there is so much illegal manufacture of androids. And why there is the AAF who advocate all the reasons that enslaving a sentient life form is in no way fair or an acceptable life form. They may blow up your corporate headquarters if you fail to see reason.

I would take all this as multiple points for injecting drama and good conflict story points into your campaign.


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Maybe we should be discussing what are good reasons that corporations WOULD be manufacturing androids, now that they are treated as citizens?

Here are some of mine:

1 - Aballon corps that want to make more citizens that can interface well with the humanoid population of the Pact Worlds.

2 - A colony that needs a quick influx of skilled people.

3 - A corporation that specializes in creating "children" of biologically incompatible races. Your dwarf/elf love child.

4 - Android groups to increase the visibility and numbers of their species.

5 - Deep space exploration ships to keep the crew numbers constant.


Losobal wrote:

I don't think anyone in their right mind would manufacture an android, given the headaches. Especially with the hippie talk of "obligation? what obligation?! I didn't ask to be born, DAD."

I mean, who would bother? Better to make a robot that doesn't piss and moan about rights and have to worry about terrorists coming to mess you up because Android-Lives-Matter.

Robots are probably a safer route but if it is an overly complex robot it could end up attracting a soul regardless. Then you've got an SRO to deal with.


I agree that anacites or deep-space Android exploration groups may be the only group capable of ethically making new androids. Anacites seem motivated purely by a desire to improve construct civilization, and for androids it would simply be another form of procreation.

Second Seekers (Jadnura)

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

Dunno if this has been brought up already, but there's got to be some kind of limitation on this, if for no other reason than Pact Worlds states that the number of representatives a planet (or protectorate) gets in the Pact Worlds Council is proportional to the number of sentients it houses. If there weren't some kind of restriction or regulation, there'd be a huge incentive for one planet to mass produce a few billion new sentients to bump up its representation and win every vote it cares about. And of course once one does it, everyone does, creating some kind of weird "vote rush" mass production scenario whereby every planet wants as many souls in as many sentients as possible, all the time.
I'm sure the Pharasmins would LOVE that scenario.


Kishmo wrote:

Dunno if this has been brought up already, but there's got to be some kind of limitation on this, if for no other reason than Pact Worlds states that the number of representatives a planet (or protectorate) gets in the Pact Worlds Council is proportional to the number of sentients it houses. If there weren't some kind of restriction or regulation, there'd be a huge incentive for one planet to mass produce a few billion new sentients to bump up its representation and win every vote it cares about. And of course once one does it, everyone does, creating some kind of weird "vote rush" mass production scenario whereby every planet wants as many souls in as many sentients as possible, all the time.

I'm sure the Pharasmins would LOVE that scenario.

No one would do that. You'd be trading marginal collective planetary gains over Pact Worlds policy (which is strictly limited in scope) to dilute your own racial votes over domestic policy (which isn't).

"The androids voted to raise taxes on all other species on Akiton by 50%."

"Yeah, but we forced every other Pact World to spend 5% less on defense. Woo hoo!"

Second Seekers (Jadnura)

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber
Xenocrat wrote:

"The androids voted to raise taxes on all other species on Akiton by 50%."

"Yeah, but we forced every other Pact World to spend 5% less on defense. Woo hoo!"

That's a pretty uninspired example. Think bigger - there is SO much potential for interplanetary political shenanigans.

"Political and Computer Learning Analysts are still struggling to understand how the voting population of Aballonian natives, SROs, and Androids increased by 100,000% just one week before the Absalom Pact Council voted on Proposition 101-X9 ("Should The Sun and all of its energy output be ceded as official property of Aballon?") occured. While answers are still forthcoming, one thing's for sure - there's going to be a lot less solar radiation for every other planet, very soon.
Full story at 11.

Coming up next: wait until you see what those rascally Eoxians are doing with mayonnaise now!"


And yet the potential abundance of xheap labor is...tempting.


Xenocrat wrote:
Kishmo wrote:

Dunno if this has been brought up already, but there's got to be some kind of limitation on this, if for no other reason than Pact Worlds states that the number of representatives a planet (or protectorate) gets in the Pact Worlds Council is proportional to the number of sentients it houses. If there weren't some kind of restriction or regulation, there'd be a huge incentive for one planet to mass produce a few billion new sentients to bump up its representation and win every vote it cares about. And of course once one does it, everyone does, creating some kind of weird "vote rush" mass production scenario whereby every planet wants as many souls in as many sentients as possible, all the time.

I'm sure the Pharasmins would LOVE that scenario.

No one would do that. You'd be trading marginal collective planetary gains over Pact Worlds policy (which is strictly limited in scope) to dilute your own racial votes over domestic policy (which isn't).

"The androids voted to raise taxes on all other species on Akiton by 50%."

"Yeah, but we forced every other Pact World to spend 5% less on defense. Woo hoo!"

I read this and assumed you were going to list the very, very big counterpoint of how much disease, hunger, and energy costs would increase and quality of life would go down by exploding your population just to influence voting on issue that don't affect your world most of the time.


If you're building an android, and the android will be capable of speaking and otherwise being an adult right afterward - presumably that gives you much better control than the process of raising a child, yes?

So if you're making an android, why would you not make one that starts out heavily biased toward loyalty to you? A son or daughter (or other gender, as appropriate) who begins life loving you as a parent and wishing to take care of you for the rest of your life. (Unless and until you earn the android's disrespect, such as by treating your "child" as a slave or worse - which is just as problematic as when it happens with same-species parents and children.)


Winged Cat wrote:

If you're building an android, and the android will be capable of speaking and otherwise being an adult right afterward - presumably that gives you much better control than the process of raising a child, yes?

So if you're making an android, why would you not make one that starts out heavily biased toward loyalty to you? A son or daughter (or other gender, as appropriate) who begins life loving you as a parent and wishing to take care of you for the rest of your life. (Unless and until you earn the android's disrespect, such as by treating your "child" as a slave or worse - which is just as problematic as when it happens with same-species parents and children.)

"No, officer, you see, this android isnt my slave. I just put a chip in their brain that makes them WANT to work for me!"


Winged Cat wrote:
So if you're making an android, why would you not make one that starts out heavily biased toward loyalty to you? A son or daughter (or other gender, as appropriate) who begins life loving you as a parent and wishing to take care of you for the rest of your life. (Unless and until you earn the android's disrespect, such as by treating your "child" as a slave or worse - which is just as problematic as when it happens with same-species parents and children.)

Well if you make sure to fullfill and satisfy it's need freely until it's ready to stand on it's own two feet, then it should love you like a child loves it's parents, minus the possible biological factors that may or may not count. ( I have no ideas if such biological factors exist)

Now if you speak about building someone to inconditionnaly love you, in a world where free will is possible and where said androids are considered freewilled then i don't think it would be right to do so. In the pact world that would most certainly be considered a form of slavery and thus be illegal.


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Pathfinder Pawns, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Big Lemon wrote:
"No, officer, you see, this android isnt my slave. I just put a chip in their brain that makes them WANT to work for me!"

Reminds me of...

The Restaurant at the End of the Universe by Douglas Adams wrote:

[The restaurateur bids the dinner guests welcome, offers to give them a chance to "meet the meat" then promptly fetches the main course for introductions.]

“Good evening," it lowed and sat back heavily on its haunches, "I am the main Dish of the Day. May I interest you in parts of my body? It harrumphed and gurgled a bit, wriggled its hind quarters into a more comfortable position and gazed peacefully at them.

...

"Something off the shoulder perhaps?" suggested the animal. "Braised in a white wine sauce?"

...

"Or the rump is very good," murmured the animal. "I've been exercising it and eating plenty of grain, so there's a lot of good meat there." It gave a mellow grunt, gurgled again and started to chew the cud. It swallowed the cud again.

"Or a casserole of me perhaps?" it added.

...

"May I urge you to consider my liver?" asked the animal, "it must be very rich and tender by now, I've been force-feeding myself for months."

"...it was eventually decided to cut through the whole tangled problem and breed an animal that actually wanted to be eaten and was capable of saying so clearly and distinctly. And here I am."

It managed a very slight bow.

[The dinner guests complete their respective orders]

"A very wise choice, sir, if I may say so. Very good," it said. "I'll just nip off and shoot myself."

:D :D :D


Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

Is it stated somewhere that all androids are 'born' as babies? I envision some basically grown as bodies until adulthood, then a consciousness is put in them, along with some memories/training. So, the android is then 'born' (becomes conscious) as an adult. In that scenario, they could just leave, but they might choose an option where they work as an 'intern' with the manufacturer for a few years to get more training and skills.


Jim H wrote:
Is it stated somewhere that all androids are 'born' as babies? I envision some basically grown as bodies until adulthood, then a consciousness is put in them, along with some memories/training. So, the android is then 'born' (becomes conscious) as an adult. In that scenario, they could just leave, but they might choose an option where they work as an 'intern' with the manufacturer for a few years to get more training and skills.

In Pathfinder Androids are explicitly created as functional adults with basic common sense, motor skills, languages etc. All in place. I don't think Starfinder has said the same but if they were created as babies and had to grow unti "usefulness" I doubt anyone would have bothered to manufacture them as slave labor. The problem is the ethics of creating a fully independent entity in a society that has no capital or means of providing for itself; basically creating a large homeless population and then saying you will provide food and shelter if they work for you for life.


Jim H wrote:
Is it stated somewhere that all androids are 'born' as babies? I envision some basically grown as bodies until adulthood, then a consciousness is put in them, along with some memories/training. So, the android is then 'born' (becomes conscious) as an adult. In that scenario, they could just leave, but they might choose an option where they work as an 'intern' with the manufacturer for a few years to get more training and skills.

In the core rulebook it is stated that they start as adults.

The problem we were discussing was how could someone legally and moraly manifacture androids. As many said, myself included, manifacturing and android with the intent to coerced into labor wouldn't be right. And we were also arguing that giving it the false choice between working for you and starving on the streets.

Imo, if you bring an being into the world no matter how old it starts, you should make sure it gets the neccessary training to do what he feels like doing and you should covers his needs while he's doing so.


Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

I guess my thought is kind of a "happy medium." They're adults and have basic skills so that they can reasonably function as adults. If an android does that, it's probably a loss for the company. However, if the android is willing to work for free for a year or two in exchange for food, lodging, more training, and maybe transportation, then the company might make up the cost.

In part the company may also hope for later profits if the android needs "repairs" or upgrades that the company offers -- guaranteed compatible with your DNA.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

A potential angle that solves certain problems and simplifies things: What if a "new born" android has a natural 'biological' tendency to socially imprint on those around it right after its 'birth' ( nascence? )? So, if you create a new android, you don't need to specifically program or coerce it to stick around, because part of android development is "learn how to actually android", and they instinctively tend to do this from the people around its creation.

So, if a company creates androids, it could reasonably expect that almost all of them would stick around for at least a couple years, because they imprint on their circumstances and use those as a way to mature their social skills. After this nascence is over, they may grow restless and move on, but by then you've already paid off your expenses; plus, not all would wish to leave, and not all would stay gone.

This would allow you to have corporations create androids without automatically triggering catastrophic ethical dilemmas. It also helps verisimilitude, IMO.


Jim H wrote:
I guess my thought is kind of a "happy medium."

I get what you mean and i see how a companies doing that might try to justify themselves with such reasoning. Beside in a business mindset it would make absolute non-sense to create Android if that wouldn't profit them.

Jim H wrote:
In part the company may also hope for later profits if the android needs "repairs" or upgrades that the company offers -- guaranteed compatible with your DNA.

Now that's a really good motive for comapanies to create Androids, and a could way to avoids legal trouble for ''coercing'' androids into slavery. What if companies would create a couple of androids ''freely'' without any condition on them to make publicity for their products? Just like when companies gives money to charity avoid taxes and get some low-cost publicity.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Variation: build androids as a loss leader for a colony or habitat, where you otherwise sell merchandise of some kind. Androids aren't new workers. . . they are new *customers*.


I've come to this lively discussion late, and just finished reading through all of the posts. One question I have that I haven't seen addressed, and can't recall seeing in any of the published sources I'm familiar with, is how quickly can androids be created? I know that they are created in "forges," the technology for which originally entered the Pact Worlds via an ancient Androffan ship that crash landed on Golarion some 12,000 years ago. But I cannot recall reading how quickly these forges can produce new androids.

Examples from other sci-fi sources range from Star Trek (hand-built creations manufactured one at a time over long periods) to Blade Runner (mass produced replicants -- although not technically androids -- that could be created easily by the thousands).

If this question is left to the GM's discretion, then the answer to it could be used as a regulator for how you want "android proliferation" to occur in your campaign. For my part, I favor the ideas shared by those who see the passage of the act to recognize androids as citizens as a significant deterrent to continued android production, to the extent that the creation of new androids has all but ended in my campaign, leaving only those who "recycle" and those who seek freedom from the Azlanti Star Empire to represent the android population.

The question of Azlanti androids is significant. In my campaign, the Android Abolitionist Front operates a liberation network smuggling escaped androids from the Azlanti Star Empire into the Pact Worlds. This is going to have some kind of implication for the events in my campaign when I eventually get around to running the upcoming Against the Aeon Throne adventure path.


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Pathfinder Pawns, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Seems like a good way for the Azlanti Empire to get spies into our midst.


A question: can anyone transfer their intellect into an android shell? If so how many do? Because I would in a second irl


Nothing supported in the rules, it seems to be based more on souls than just memories too, it would probably take powerful magic to accomplish and even then it is a tricky area since the shell would have another soul already in it or on it's way towards it.

... But transferring your mind and soul to a robot seems like a good way to justify being an SRO.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

The Reincarnate spell can produce an Android, so transferring a soul into an android body should totally be possible. It'd just be difficult and expensive.


I could work it out.

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