Grobots - Documentation - Hardware

Each line of a type's hardware section consists of the name of a piece of hardware followed by some numerical or symbolic arguments. A mass of "standard" means standard mass, which is 0.02 times the cost of the hardware. A constant * "standard" means that hardware is heavier or lighter than average. For example, a piece of hardware that costs 400 with a mass of "2 * standard" has a mass of 400 * 2 * 0.02 = 16.

Quick Reference

We rarely remember to update the costs and masses in this table. When in doubt, consult the Types view.

Hardware elementCostMassUse cost
processor instructions-per-frame [memory] 2 * instructions-per-frame + 0.05 * memory half standard 0.0005 * instructions-executed
engine max-power 800 * max-power standard actual power
constructor max-power 100 * max-power standard actual power
energy max initial max / 10 + initial max / 500 na
solar-cells power 2000 * power 1.8 * standard -power
eater max-power 100 * max-power standard - (up to max-power)
syphon max-power [range] max-power * (16 + 4 * range) standard between +/- max-power depending on setting and target
enemy-syphon max-power [range] max-power * (30 + 10 * range) standard between +/- max-power depending on setting and target
robot-sensor range [numResults] range2 * 0.25 + range + numResults * 1 0.375 * standard range2 * 0.005
food-sensor range [numResults]
shot-sensor range [numResults]
armor amount amount 1.5 * standard na
repair-rate max-power 400 * max-power standard 2 * actual-rate
shield max-power 500 * max-power 0.5 * standard actual-power
blaster damage range reload-time damage * (1/reload-time + 1/100) * (120 + range * 8) damage * (1/reload-time + 1/100) * (3.75 + range * 0.18) damage * (0.18 + range * 0.012)
grenades strength range reload-time strength * (1/reload-time + 1/200) * (110 + range * 8) strength * (1/reload-time + 1/200) * (3.2 + range * 1) strength * (0.132 + range * 0.0096)
force-field power range power * (800 + range * 80) standard actual-power
bomb damage 0.25 * damage 1.5 * standard na

Masses are roughly proportional to cost. Most hardware weighs about 1 mass unit per 50 cost. Electronic hardware like processor or shields is lighter, and armor and solar cells are heavier. There is an overhead per robot of cost 20 and mass 0.5, to discourage the creation of very small robots.

What the hardware does

Some details of the hardware are documented in the physics page.

Determines how fast the robot can think, in instructions per frame, and how much local memory it has.
Determines how fast the robot can move.
Makes more robots. Specifically, it determines how fast you can turn energy into babies.
Radio (obsolete)
Communication used to require special hardware, but no longer does. You may still see radios in old sides, but they cost nothing and have no effect.


Energy storage (battery)
Stores energy so you can use it later.
Solar cells
Supplies a small constant amount of energy per frame.
Collects food you run over, at a limited rate.
Transfers energy to or from another robot. This is useful for sharing energy within a side. Setting the syphon to a positive value steals energy, negative gives energy.


Sensors see one class of things (food, robots, or shots) at a limited range. You can fire a sensor as often as you like, but long-range sensors take a lot of energy to fire. You can control whether sensors see friendly robots and shots.


How much damage the robot can take without dying.
Damaged armor can be repaired, slowly.
Shield (mostly obsolete)
A shield consumes lots of energy, but reduces damage. However, a robot can't fire or reproduce while shielded. Shields are slow to raise and lower.


The simplest weapon. Fires a shot that hits the first thing in its path.
Grenade launcher
Grenades travel a specified distance, then explode. Grenade launchers are heavier than blasters.
Force fields
A force field pushes robots and food in a specified direction.
Enemy syphon
Like a regular syphon, but also works on enemies, so you can steal their energy.
Increase size of death explosion when the robot dies. Used for missiles.


Moved to the hardware interface page.

Grobots by Devon Schudy ( and Warren Schudy (