Benevolent Computers

Recommendations by Kinetic Mouse Car

Sometimes it is the AI characters who leave the strongest impression whether they are the villain or your closest friend. This list will focus on the latter.

This is a mix of AI PCs and NPCs. You either play as an AI with a noble purpose or interact with an AI who has always got your back.

This list does not refer to individual robot characters who move around independently. Red Radish Robotics, Pantomime, and Planetfall (I could go on and on. Maybe I should make a list for that…) are cool but do not qualify here.

These are well-meaning computers who run an entire spaceship or facility. A mainframe. I would make a list for ones that are not-so-nice but those tend to be spoilers.

For each game I will use the following structure: AI name (context) PC or NPC

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1. Absence of Law
by mathbrush
Average member rating: (44 ratings)

Kinetic Mouse Car says:

DaleosOS (research facility) NPC
Play as a stand-in for Dr. Law, a director who has mysteriously disappeared. Daleos assists in helping you review three eccentric research teams that compete with the goal of creating projects that achieve immortality. Catch: Daleos is convinced you are Dr. Law. An outstanding game with a wide variety of puzzles. Great choice for humor. Inform.

2. Andromeda Apocalypse — Extended Edition
by Marco Innocenti
Average member rating: (29 ratings)

Kinetic Mouse Car says:

Logan (starship) NPC
You are one of the last living creatures in the Andromeda galaxy which is being consumed by mysterious objects called hypertropes. As you flee you stumble across a derelict ship run by an AI named Logan. With nothing else to do, Logan gladly helps you escape and even shares the history of the beings that once occupied the ship’s walls. Won first place in IFComp 2012. Inform.

3. Changes, by David Given (2012)
Average member rating: (17 ratings)
Kinetic Mouse Car says:

The Concerto (starship) NPC
The Concerto is a research vessel run by a computer of the same name. The story is mostly told through cutscenes, but they are vividly written. The protagonist teams up with the Concerto in a desperate scramble to investigate a planet's telepathic abilities before colonization. Give the puzzles a chance. A personal favorite. Inform.

4. Fall of the Achilles
by davidesky2
Average member rating: (1 rating)

Kinetic Mouse Car says:

Sahil (spaceship) NPC
You play as a smuggler seeking to loot a formerly missing spaceship called the Achilles in hopes of finding the "big haul." Your own ship, the Corvus, is run by an AI named Sahil who communicates with you remotely as you explore. Sahil may not have the same prominent, bubbly personality as the other computers on this list, but he is polite, helpful, and gets the job done. Twine.

5. Plasmorphosis
by Agnieszka Trzaska
Average member rating: (5 ratings)

Kinetic Mouse Car says:

Daphne (starship) NPC
You play as a research rover named Rovie while Daphne is the spaceship AI. Unfortunately, the ship crash landed on your destination planet. While you study the planet Daphne repairs the ship. Because Rovie does not speak English, Daphne also has to translate for the player. A puzzle-oriented game suitable for younger audiences. Twine.

6. Seedship
by John Ayliff
Average member rating: (48 ratings)

Kinetic Mouse Car says:

Simply called “the Seedship” (starship) PC
As benevolent as they come, this computer is tasked with finding a new home for humanity after escaping a failing Earth. With only 1000 cryogenically frozen colonists left the computer must make challenging decisions to maximize success and preserve the human race. I especially liked the game's portrayal of space travel. Told in third person and surprisingly thoughtful. Twine.

7. Skybreak!
by William Dooling
Average member rating: (15 ratings)

Kinetic Mouse Car says:

The player chooses the name (starship) NPC
Explore entire galaxies and worlds in this sci-fi/fantasy game where your ship narrates the story (and in fact, your souls are tied together). This computer is 110% benevolent, believe me. Great choice if you are looking for a long game with customizable character details. ADRIFT.

8. The Axolotl Project
by Samantha Vick
Average member rating: (42 ratings)

Kinetic Mouse Car says:

ToM (research facility) NPC
This game takes place on a research base on the moon where you play as an intern who studies mysterious alien-like salamanders. ToM is a lively AI who assists in uncovering secrets about the base’s staff and top-secret research. Twine (Highly recommended if you are looking for a Twine game with parser-like feel).

9. Traveler
by Caelyn Sandel
Average member rating: (7 ratings)

Kinetic Mouse Car says:

Unnamed (deep space probe) PC
Play as a space exploration probe with amnesia. Your original mission was to scout new planets for humanity. That is, until you lost contact with ground control. Now, you must figure out the next stage of your existence, contemplating whether to continue your mission to the best of your ability or try something new. I’m not sure if this game is still available. Twine.

10. Trigaea
by Adam Ipsen (RynGM)
Average member rating: (9 ratings)

Kinetic Mouse Car says:

Esra (specialized lab) NPC
I’d say the most benevolent AI here. Esra becomes an extension of protagonist. I have never seen an AI NPC so heavily invested in the gameplay and your own wellbeing. Esra runs a high-tech lab that makes genetic modifications and regenerates your body when you die. It is an epic story about regaining your memories on an alien planet. Highly recommend. Twine.

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