Morph Trait: Uncanny Valley

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Bonus: 10 CP

There is a point where synthetic human looks become uncannily realistic and human-seeming, but they remain just different enough that their looks seem creepy or even repulsive—a phenomenon called the “uncanny valley.” Morphs whose looks fall into this range suffer a –10 modifier on social skill tests when dealing with humans. This modifier does not apply to interactions with xenomorphs or those with the infolife or uplift backgrounds.



Uncanny valley refers to a theory in robotics whereby if you were to have a continuum of "realism" with industrial robots on one end and completely realistic "humanoid" robots on the other end, the more realistic a robot is, the more positive and empathetic our reaction to it becomes. So you would treat a welding robot like a mindless robot, but a perfect replica of a human being like, well, a human being, with increasingly positive reactions throughout the whole continuum. The exception to this is the "uncanny valley" where robots are too realistic to appear fully mechanical, yet not realistic enough to be completely accepted as "humanoid". Robots that fall within this valley tend to, if I may borrow the scientific term, skeez people right the fuck out. They're just creepy and corpse-like. Compare your reaction to this: Video 01 and this: Video 02 If you're like most people, you probably thought the first vid was pretty harmless, but the second one was creepy as all hell. So yeah, that's not what that means…