Robots have been in Stellaris since its release. In the beginning, you could only make use of robot pops by building them. The release of the Synthetic Dawn DLC changed that. Players could, at last, create their own machine empires to go forth and conquer the galaxy with.
Robots, whether created or part of a machine empire; are quite similar to regular pops. They do not consume food, have no climate preference, and are immune to the happiness mechanic. They still need upkeep, require housing, and have traits, just like biological pops.
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Robot traits are different from biological ones. There are 24 base traits to choose from, and picking the best robot traits can be confusing for new players. This guide will list the eight best traits in no particular order. The goal of this guide is to help you make the best possible decisions when constructing your robot pops.
The best robot traits in Stellaris, in no particular order, are; Efficient Processors, Repurposed Hardware, Logic Engines, Mass-produced, Power Drills, Superconductive, High Bandwidth, and Propaganda Machines.
Table of Contents
- The Best Robot traits in Stellaris
- Bonus Traits
The Best Robot traits in Stellaris
The best thing about robot traits is that it is much easier to edit during a play-through. You need little to no research, nor do you have to unlock ascension perks.
For those that love micromanagement, you can customize pops by planet to maximize pop production.
Trait points for robots are only unlocked through research. This means you don’t need to worry about creating the perfect robot pops yet. You can treat creating the perfect robot as a long-term goal for your empire to achieve.
The following headings discuss the best traits you can pick for your robot pops. The list is in no particular order and consists of both positive and negative traits.
Starting off strong, we have Efficient Processors. This costs a whopping 3 trait points to install on your robot pops, but the price is worth the cost. The trait will increase all job production by five percent.
A five percent bonus for three trait points may seem a lot, but over time this will pay for itself many times over. This is also for every job the pop could be doing.
Most production bonuses only benefit one job in particular. This trait will reduce the need for micromanaging pop traits for maximum efficiency.
Due to this trait costing three points, you will need to pair this with negative traits to be able to use it. This is not as bad as it seems. This guide will explain why taking negative traits can be a good thing.
Later in the game, though, you can unlock enough trait points to use this trait with no negative modifiers.
The first negative in this guide is; repurposed hardware. It may seem counterintuitive to have a trait that makes your pops weaker in a best traits guide. Let me explain how some negative traits are actually very good.
Machine empires only get one trait to spend in empire creation. So, taking negative traits is the only way to obtain the more expensive ones at the beginning of the game. Negative traits give negative modifiers but provide extra trait points to spend.
Repurposed hardware will give you one extra trait point to spend. The cost for this extra trait point is a 25 percent penalty to leader experience gain.
What makes this so good is the fact that robot leaders are immortal. Your immortal leaders will outlive this penalty, so take this for, more or less, a free extra trait point to spend.
Spending two trait points will let you install the logic engines trait on your robot pops.
I have said it before, and I will say it again. Research is king in Stellaris. Anything you can do to improve research should be a top priority for any empire.
Research is everything. It unlocks the best buildings, provides production buffs, makes leaders stronger, pops grow faster, new ships, and a whole host of other upgrades.
You could make a case for this being the best robot trait you could put on your pops. I am tempted to agree with that because research powers are the key to an easy game.
The problem with this trait is; if the pop does a job that does not involve research. That means a robot that is a minor has a two-cost robot trait on them for no benefit whatsoever. Regardless, this is still a strong and powerful trait that is no doubt high in the meta.
Research may be king in Stellaris, but what does research need? Pops to fill those research jobs.
The more pops you have, the greater your empire’s production capacity becomes. This is where the cheap and powerful trait mass-produced comes in.
Mass-produced improves pop assembly speed by 15 percent. This trait is independent of what job the pop has, and as a result, is always useful to every pop you own.
Not only that; it costs only one trait point, making this an absolute steal.
This trait is a great example of where the customizable nature of robot pops can shine.
With it being so cheap, you can create a vast and powerful empire that no longer needs to rush pop production. Then swapping this out for another will be no problem at all, allowing you to invest trait points elsewhere.
Power drills is the first of three resource production buffs this guide will discuss.
For two trait points, you can outfit your robot pops with specialist drills that improve mineral production from jobs by 15 percent. A generous buff all on its own, its only weakness being that only miner pops can make use of it.
Minerals are a powerful resource in the game. Without them, you cannot produce alloys; which are the lifeblood of fleets in Stellaris. The more minerals you have access to, the greater your alloy production can become.
Creating a specialized planet that only has mining districts is a popular tactic with this trait.
After establishing the mining world, you can upgrade the pops on the planet with power drills.
If you have ten pops on that planet working mining jobs, then you install this trait on them. Mineral production on that planet would explode by 150 percent.
Power drills’ cooler cousin is the superconductive trait. This trait costs two trait points and will improve energy credit production, from jobs, by 15 percent.
In terms of power level, this is the superior pick between power drill and superconductive.
Robot pops do not use food for upkeep. They instead use energy credits. Not taking into account other factors, a technician pop produces 8 energy and costs 1 energy per tick.
With the superconductive trait, that production increases to 9.2. This trait makes the pop pay for itself and then a bit more, making pop upkeep free.
Over hundreds of technician jobs, this trait has the power to make robot upkeep a nonissue. Energy credits have a lot of applicable uses as well.
Market purchases, terraforming, clearing tile blockers, upkeep of buildings; to name a few, all cost energy.
Machines have to deal with all the energy costs a regular empire does, as well as the energy cost of their pops. Anything you can do to level that playing field will give you a strong advantage over your biological rivals.
High bandwidth is another negative trait, which is also very strong. This trait will increase your empire size production from pops by 15 percent.
Taking this negative modifier on the chin will net your empire two extra trait points to spend.
For me, I would not build a machine empire without this trait. It is far too good to pass up on.
You cannot outrun empire size in Stellaris anymore, and as a result, its penalties are not as bad as they used to be. Two trait points is nothing to scoff at, and taking other traits offsets any penalty caused by empire size.
If taking negative traits feels strange to you, please believe me. They are worth it.
Your play style will evolve during the course of your run, so don’t forget, you can unlock extra robot trait points. These extra points can be spent on removing these negative modifiers instead of adding extra positive traits.
The last of the best robot traits is propaganda machines. Like superconductive and power drills; this trait improves unity production from jobs by 15 percent.
Where it differs from these two traits, is that it will only cost you one trait point to put on your pops.
Unity production is an area where robots suffer. They lack a lot of the other options biological pops enjoy. They cannot use ethics, spiritualist jobs, and have no access to the faction’s system for farming extra unity.
This trait is a cheap, and reliable way to boost robot empires’ lackluster unity production.
Without effective unity production, your empire will fall behind in adopting traditions.
That means other empires, and potentially your enemies, will be unlocking the strongest bonuses in the game before you. This trait is the most effective way to offset that penalty and is cheap to boot.
I want to finish this guide to talk about two more traits that robot pops have. They are not on the list of strongest traits because, you could argue, that they are not traits at all. However, the game lists them as traits, and as such, you should be aware of the benefits they provide you.
The two traits I am talking about are the machine and mechanical traits. Every robot pop will have one of these two traits; they cannot be removed, and they cost zero trait points.
The machine trait is for machine empires, and the mechanical pop is for robot pops created by biological empires.
They both provide the same benefits. The first is making the pops unaffected by the happiness mechanic, thus making your pops production potential much more predictable.
Second is a 200 percent increase in habitability. This bonus makes habitability a non-factor for machine pops. They can live wherever they want, with no penalty.
Last but not least is that leaders with one of these traits are immortal. Leaders can still die by accident or in battle but will not die of old age.
These traits are what make robot pops unique from their biological counterparts.
All the traits previously discussed have their own biological equivalent. Machine and mechanical do not have a biological equivalent, making them special.
Not only that, the bonuses these traits provide are very strong and alter the game’s core mechanics in fun and interesting ways.
This is everything you need to know about which robot traits are the best.
If you have any questions or suggestions for this guide, please let us know in the comments section below. As always, have fun building robots in Stellaris.