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Cyborg

"A handsome young Cyborg named Ace
Wooed women at every base
But once ladies glanced at
His special enhancement
They vanished with nary a trace."
Barracks graffiti, Sparta Command, Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri

The science of grafting mechanical/electronic enhancements on organic creatures, oftentimes by replacing limbs with robotic parts or even mechanical weapons (such as an Arm Cannon), for instance, though often it's only called cybernetics if it's a smidge more complicated.

Cybernetics (from Gratuitous Greek for "piloting", because Everything Sounds Futuristic in Greek) is the study and development of regulated systems; a cyborg would be a human integrated with a control-feedback system.note  For example, a hearing aid sends amplified signal into the ear canal, and can be controlled with a finger on the volume. A pacemaker detects heart rhythms and sends its own impulses to regulate it. A peg leg neither sends nor receives signal, but more sophisticated prosthetics include voluntary control systems, and even some simulated tactile feedback.

As Hollywood Science, cybernetics in fiction often involves replacing an entire body except half a face/chest with mechanical parts and can go as advanced as having a lone brain reside inside a machine, while cybernetics in Real Life presently peaks at ocular implants with low frame-rate and gray-scale vision. If your generic Mad Scientist has a specialty in robotics, or even dabbles in it, you should expect this trope to come up relatively soon. Those who have been subject to cybernetics are called Cyborgs, as opposed to Androids, which are Ridiculously Human Robots. It's somewhat common in media that take place in the "present," and will almost certainly come up in storylines Twenty Minutes into the Future.

There's also the matter of how one starts off. Cyborgs include biological humans with parts replaced with machinery, while machines with biological parts added are instead Wetware Body or Organic Technology (or if put together from scratch, an Artificial Human.) Whether or not this detracts from them being a person depends on the series. Sometimes as long as the brain is organic, in lieu of Brain Uploading, it's a person. Sometimes not even then.

In the original definition of “cybernetics,” it was the study of constructing machines by mimicking real organisms, e.g. building insect robots that process sensory and motion information like insects do. Thus, “cybernetic organism” can refer to such a pure machine. The “super-prosthetic” part came later, but it has overshadowed the earlier definition. “Bionics” is an older term from the design field, where it meant mimicking nature in order to get an elegant, functional product (see Victor Papanek's seminal book, Design For The Real World for multiple examples). It was used much in this manner by Martin Caidin's early 1970s novel Cyborg, to describe mechanical prosthetics designed to look and act like real limbs, but in the adaptation of Cyborg into The Six Million Dollar Man, the "elements of nature" aspect was lost and it became a generic term for the enhancement of people with mechanical parts. Fortunately for those who use it for its original meaning, this definition is seldom seen anymore.

Common things used in cybernetics include the Restraining Bolt, the Arm Cannon and Artificial Limbs. On the highest level of tech we have Nanomachines infusing biological beings. Just be careful not to overdo it, if you're in a setting where Cybernetics Eat Your Soul or where they're treated as Power Upgrading Deformations. Often cybernetics is used as an excuse to bring someone Back from the Dead, even if the brain has been dead a while. One can certainly expect some questions about What Measure Is a Non-Human?, and an attempt to take over or “replace” mundane humanity is not out of the question. Of course, it's also possible most cyborgs be Pro Human Transhumans.

Note that in many cases, a Hollywood Style Cyborg will become super strong or super fast just from replacement of arms and/or legs. Actually, the replacement limbs would require extensive attachments throughout the body, otherwise, the limbs would rip themselves from the body, among other non-optimal outcomes.

See its Super Trope Transhuman for all ways of enhancement. If you're of a transhuman bent, prepare for a dose of I Want My Jetpack.

Subtropes include:

For the DC Comics character, see Cyborg. For the movie, see Cyborg.


Examples:

    open/close all folders 

     Anime & Manga  
  • Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z have Dr. Gero's creations, which are all under the blanket term "androids." However, two of the main four (Nos. 17 and 18; #16 is an android, as is, apparently, #8) in Dragon Ball Z are cyborgs, and it is implied that many of the previous ones were cyborgs as well. It is not revealed exactly how they were modified, only that it was enough for them to forget their previous lives. Eventually, Dr. Gero transplants his brain in a robotic body, becoming a cyborg as well. This is something of a case of Lost in Translation, as the original word would be closer to "Artificial Human" (thus it includes Cell who is wholly organic). note 
    • Androids 17 and 18 were supposed to be full androids at first, but were retconned to cyborg twins when the writers decided to marry 18 to Krillin.
      • The misuse of "android" for 17 and 18 is lampshaded in Dragon Ball Z Abridged. Cell explicitly refers to them as cyborgs and mocks Piccolo for incorrectly calling them androids.
    • Frieza also becomes a cyborg after being defeated by Goku on Namek. Oddly enough, in Hell he isn't allowed to keep his cyborg body while Dr. Gero is.
    • Perhaps it was because he was reverted back to how he was before he suffered the massive body mutilation in his fight with Goku. Gero was revived with a new humanoid body after escaping Hell- which was altered from the human flesh once again.
  • GaoGaiGar's Guy Shishioh is 90% machine, having been caught up in a space accident involving his shuttle, Galeon, and EI-01 — it's actually Galeon who brings him back safe, and Galeon's technology that's used in rebuilding him. First describes himself as "The greatest cyborg in history", and has a valid claim towards it — but subverts it by collapsing after his first battle, as becoming GaoGaiGar puts a lot of strain on him, even without using Hell and Heaven. It turns out that it takes upwards of a week for his body's immune system to adjust to replacement parts, and if not for Mamoru's abilities with G-Stones, he would not have been able to fight in the second episode, nor survive certain events afterwards. After the end of the series, he (and Mikoto) become "Evoluders", something that isn't entirely explained, other than the effect that he can still use the GaoMachines just fine, but looks like a normal human.
  • Ghost in the Shell features "full-body replacement" cyborgs as primary characters, who have been modified to the point where the only thing that's human about them is their brainnote . One of the Tachikomas (insect-like, sentient mecha) successfully passes the Turing Test by claiming to be a full-body replacement when questioned. Kusanagi occasionally angsts about whether the military may have replaced her brain without telling her, presumably uploading her into a robot. As later events show, this is a valid possibility. The manga discusses the Required Secondary Powers: an organic human frame puts limits on how much ability enhancement cybernetics can impart, and thus a fully cybernetic body has much greater capabilities than a person with a largely original organic body and more limited cybernetics. Further, in Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex - Solid State Society a character limited cybernetics adds more. He is told to be careful, since his organic body will be put under further strain by this. The series explores the question of whether Cybernetics Eat Your Soul — a pressing question in this setting because the slope to becoming a full cyborg is slippery indeed.
  • Appleseed, has cybernetics anywhere from a replacement finger to a full-body conversion. Both series being from Shirow Masamune, he goes into detailed explanations as to the limitations of such enhancements, such as how simply having a cybernetic arm doesn't mean that arm would have super-strength, unless it was heavily tied in and firmly attached to the body. Full-body Cyborgs get to keep their reproductive systems too, or get new ones. Not so much in Ghost in the Shell, especially in the first movie where Motoko states she is incapable of birth due to her completely artificial body. In the Appleseed manga, this is made very clear since Deunan Knute (a human) and Briareos Hecatonchires (a full-body replacement) are known to have a physical as well as romantic relationship.
  • Battle Angel Alita also goes the full-conversion route. Toyed-with somewhat in the final stages of the original manga, the residents of Tiphares/Zalem, all of whom thought they were wholly human (distinguishing them from the mongrel cybernetic hordes living below), discover that the network governing Tipharean society routinely takes all citizens upon their reaching maturity, downloads the knowledge from their brains onto small black chips, steals their brains, and leaves them with the chip as a replacement. While (almost) every cyborg in the Scrapyard, no matter how modified, has a human brain the Tiphareans can claim no such thing. This comes as something of a shock.
  • The main characters in Cyborg 009 are all cyborgs.
  • Mazinger Z: All villains -except Big Bad Dr. Hell- were cyborgs: Baron Ashura, Count Brocken, their Mooks... All of them -except by Archduke Gorgon- were created by Hell himself. Usually he fabricated his cyborgs by modifying corpses, replacing damaged parts with artificial limbs or organs and implanting cybernetic components in their brains to create obedient, brainwashed slaves (and there was at least one scene in one of the manga versions where Baron Ashura killed many people off, as gloating they would be transformed into cyborgs and turned into his/her slaves. Now you know what happened to all people who died when a Mechanical Beast attacked). It looked like this. However, in at least one instance he saved the life of the subject -Count Brocken- by turning him into a cyborg. Other cyborg characters were Kenzo Kabuto and in the Gosaku Ota manga Kouji Kabuto himself was turned into one by the end of the series.
  • Naoko Takeuchi once planned to make Ami Mizuno of Sailor Moon a cyborg, to justify her incredible intelligence. She was even planned to have Pinocchio Syndrome and to make a Heroic Sacrifice since she "wasn't human anyways", but instead the cyborg elements were incorporated into Hotaru, who had wired limbs and mechanical parts visible through them (this is due to her father experimenting on her to keep her alive). Hotaru even despairs of her body feeling "bloodless".
  • Fullmetal Alchemist
    • Edward Elric, with his automail limbs. Alphonse is sort of the magical version of this, being a disembodied soul animating a suit of armor.
    • Buccaneer, Panimya and Lan Fan as well.
    • Colonel Archer in the 2003 anime version of was blown up at one point, but came back in a half-robot form.
  • The Lyrical Nanoha franchise features the Combat Cyborgs: Subaru and Ginga Nakajima and the twelve Numbers. The lore mentions that cybernetic prosthetics are readily available thanks to Mid-Childan medicine, but the Combat Cyborgs take it a dozen steps further, having been genetically engineered from before birth to incorporate extensive combat-oriented cybernetic enhancements without their bodies rejecting it all. The series also offers a justification for where all those enhancements draw power from: all Combat Cyborgs are latent mages whose bodies generate mana (essentially the "energy of life" in this setting) and a special implant continuously converts it to electricity to power the circuits.
  • The title Amazon Brigade and Gantai in Koi Koi 7 are cyborgs, though they mostly appear to be normal humans, save for the superpowers. Otome is the most mechanical of the group, having to "feed" herself through an electric cable.
  • Jinno, of Afro Samurai, or at least when he is reintroduced in episodes 3-4. He has certain human parts, like his head, arms, and legs, but has to rely entirely on a mechanical body for his strength, breathing, and possibly his vision.
  • After he got run over by the Sea Train, Franky of One Piece saved himself by replacing just about all his body parts in the front with mechanical parts from his old warships. It should also be noted that Franky built himself. Then there's Bartholemew Kuma of the Seven Warlords of the Sea. Unlike Franky he wasn't built from scraps, and it shows. At this point, it's not clear how much of him is still human, or if he's the equivalent of The Terminator now. As of chapter 560 the Pacifista transformation process (which was done gradually over time) was recently completed, leaving him a mute emotionless machine.
    • After the two year time skip, we find that Franky has "upgraded" himself even more robotic-looking. His shoulders are massive and spherical, and his forearms are cubes attached with giant screws (to list the two most obvious differences). In his own words, he's "completely beyond human understanding now!" Everyone else just finds it cool, though... except for Nami and Robin.
    • There are a few other minor cyborg characters running around the series, such as Kaido's servant Scotch.
  • The manga Eden: It's an Endless World! features cybernetics prominently, from replacement limbs or eyes to full-body cyborgs (particularly useful to soldiers and hackers). The prosthetic parts are extremely common and seemingly available to all but the poorer characters, despite the story being being set barely a century from now. It's nicely justified by the recent body drying plague that crippled half of the world's population and triggered a technological revolution.
  • In Code Geass, Jeremiah Gottwald is outfitted with various cybernetics after being nearly killed by Kallen during the Battle of Narita, and then later rebuilt some more in the second season. He ends up with neural interfaces, built-in arm swords and bulletproof armor, and most importantly a Geass Canceller in his left eye.
  • Vash the Stampede from Trigun. Besides the replacement arm, other parts of his body have apparently been "repaired" with non-organic material.
  • In Gunslinger Girl, the girls are cyberized, and the cybernetics will kill them eventually.
  • In the early '90s OVA 8th Man After, there are two different types of cyborgs, both of whom rely on stimulants to keep their brains' motor functions from conflicting with the cybernetics. Eight Man himself is a total body replacement with a human brain, while the cyborgs he fights, Cyber Junkies, are street punks who cut off and replace limbs with high-powered weapons and abilities. Unfortunately, the Cyber Junkies rely on a crude version of the stimulant that eventually turns their brains to mush and makes them psychotically violent.
  • In InuYasha, Ginkotsu of the Band of Seven is a heavily modified cyborg in feudal Japan.
  • In the manga series Change Hifumi (aka Change 123), the character Col. Ralph Austin (an American soldier) lost his left arm and had it replaced with an advanced prosthetic
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure gives us Rudolf von Stroheim, the Nazi cyborg. Yes. NAZI cyborg. Complete with a chest turret and swastika-shaped eye laser. He's on the protagonist's side.
  • Sasori from Naruto turned himself into this, using magic puppetry instead of hard robotics. His gran did the same thing, but only to one arm.
  • Parodied in Astro Fighter Sunred when Florsheim decide to create a horrible cyborg monster to defeat Sunred by... Fusing a moth monster with a piece of lead pipe. Yeah, they replaced his right forearm with the lead pipe. Sunred is unimpressed.
  • Gatchaman: Condor Joe was brought back for the sequel as a cyborg after having been killed at the end of the first series. Enhanced strength, speed, senses, reflexes and a bomb for Sosai X next to his heart..
  • Super Dimension Fortress Macross: several Zentraedi are shown to have mechanical parts (notably half of Breetai's head). In the movie incarnation of the series, the Big Bad was permanently wired up and connected to his flagship, acting as a sort of living control computer. Macross Frontier shows that humans have begun utilizing cyborg components, and a cyborg pilot proves to be far superior to almost all flesh-and-blood humans, being able to mentally control his machine and withstand far greater G-forces. The Big Bad is the logical conclusion, being an example of Brain Uploading of a large number of people into one mind which controls a robotic, but fully human-looking, body.

     Comic Books  
  • Marvel Comics, particularly Spider-Man's Alistair Smythe and Dr. Octopus.
    • Iron Man is a cyborg, but not from his name-inspiring suit of armor. His heart is kept going with cybernetic parts. Later on in the series he becomes a more traditional cyborg with hollow bones full of nanites and the ability to control technology with his mind. Pepper Potts is also now a cyborg.
    • ROM: Spaceknight. Though he volunteered to be made a cyborg, he loathed it and longed to end his war with the Dire Wraiths and regain his humanity. Eventually, he did! Good for him!
    • Wolverine's adamantium-bonded skeleton may count (which would also include Sabertooth and Bullseye). He definitely counted prior to having his admantium removed, because his claws were explicitly cybernetic implants in mechanical housings. They were later retconned into being a natural part of his skeletal structure, extended and retracted through muscular action.
    • Other Marvel cyborgs include Silvermane, Omega Red, Apocalypse, Cable, Deathlock, Lady Deathstrike, Donald Pierce, Cyber, Garrison Kane, Forge, and many more.
  • DC Comics has Cyborg, obviously, but there are also Metallo, Robotman of the Doom Patrol, and Cyborg Superman, among others.
    • Depending on the version, Blue Beetle's scarab is either separate from its host or integrated into its body.
  • Warren Ellis' Global Frequency deconstructed and subverted this, pointing out the extensive and conspicuous modifications it would take to make a real cyborg. It was so hard, in fact, that most people who underwent the procedure had psychotic breaks, and were intended more as non-nuclear WMDs than foot soldiers.
  • Also from Warren Ellis, the Engineer from The Authority and Wildstorm Storm Watch
  • Archie Comics' short-lived comic based on the MANTECH toy franchise was based around this trope, with heroic cyborgs fighting evil robots. The three dying heroes were made into cyborgs to save their lives, their whole bodies being replaced with boxy robotic bits, gaining superpowers in the process. Aquatech hates what has happened to him, Solartech accepts it as a necessity, and Lasertech loves it.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog has Bunnie Rabbot (now Bunnie D'Coolette), a Mobian that got partly roboticized leaving her with two robotic limbs. She eventually gets these parts upgraded, meaning the process could never be undone. As shown by Sonic Universe's "30 Years Later" storyline, her and Antoine's children, Jacque and Belle D'Coolette, have inherited this trait. In the same series we have The Dark Legion, whose Machine Worship lifestyle dictates that all their members become this. Trademarks include one robotic dreadlock and a chip implanted into their brain at birth that allows them to wipe their own memory, in case of capture or defection. Particularly disturbing as it has been recently revealed that instead of executing prisoners, they forcibly "Legionize" them into cyborg soldiers in public.
  • Last Man Standing has a few of them are running around. The most notable one would be Judge, a zombie Psycho Electro Glass Cannon who used to be a Russian Soldier before his death while working for Armtech. He got better, and now he's looking to lay down a Roaring Rampage of Revenge against the people who left him to die.
  • Lady Mechanika, a Steam Punk cyborg Action Girl.
  • The Castaka Metabarons in The Metabarons.
  • In All Fall Down, Pronto undergoes this treatment to regain his lost powers and attack Siphon on equal footing.
  • Judge Dredd has several of them, known as Mandroids. Most notable are Judge Guthrie and Nate Slaughterhouse.
  • The family from Bazooka Jules are a group of cyborgs developed by White Sleep Technologies. Each of them is a previously deceased mass murderer whose brain and spinal column are fused with a robot body.

    Fanfic 
  • In Tails Of The Old Republic, a crossover/ Fusion Fic between Sonic the Hedgehog and the videogame Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, Tails himself is one, by his own choice. He has reinforced bones, organ function monitors/regulators, nanomachines, and a secondary neural network. Considering the hell he goes through, sometimes it's all that keeps him alive.
  • In Uplifted Joachim Hoch and his son John Hoch. Joachim loses his arm in combat, his son has his replaced to prove a point about his company's ability to augment humans.
  • In Hottie 3: The Best Fan Fic in the World, Carmen Cole get's rebuilt into a cyborg after getting killed in the novel Hottie by Jonathan Bernstein.
  • There was a fad for a brain from another dimension to turn ponies into cyborgs in the Reading Rainbowverse.
  • In Crossover Chaos, Hawkeye Pierce from M*A*S*H is turned into this after getting run over by a car
  • Plan 7 of 9 from Outer Space. In the Zeerust future of Captain Proton, women are getting cybernetic enhancements to compete with Sexbots and Do Anything Robots who are replacing them in the domestic sphere. But these enhanced women have little patience with taking orders from men and so decide to Take Over the World.

    Films — Animated 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Star Wars, particularly Anakin (who loses an arm at first) who then turns into Darth Vader (both legs, the other arm as well as extensive internal organ damage, particularly the lungs) and Luke (right hand) Skywalker, Lobot (Lando Calrissian's assistant, direct brain-link to the city mainframe), and General Grievous (entire body except brain, heart and lungs).
    • Also a possible aversion as the Jedi at least generally experience a decrease in power due to cybernetics. Anakin loses the ability to use Force Lightning, as well as a lot of his lightsaber combat effectiveness. Grievous is the exception (playing the trope straight) as his remaking only seems to enhance his capabilities, but he was never Force-sensitive to begin with. It could also be one of the reasons that if the player cross-classes Bao-Dur in Knights of the Old Republic, he becomes the class with the lowest amount of Force abilities and Force Points.
      • The reason Anakin lost his lightsaber prowess was because his cybernetics were shoddy, third-rate models. It's been implied that Palpatine deliberately equipped him with cybernetics bad enough to keep Anakin under control. While Anakin/Vader is able to make some limited improvements to his artificial limbs over the years, much of his cybernetics are integrated into his life support and thus he would die if he tried to do a more proper upgrade.
    • Whether or not cybernetics interfere with the Force Depends On The Writer, another possible explanation for it is that the loss in Force power is directly tied to the Body Horror aspect of the cybernetics. A simple hand or limb replacement that you can easily accept? Probably not too bad. Being turned into a metal-shelled, horridly scarred monstrosity? That's got to cause some mental issues, which will definitely interfere with Force use. Or it simply creates physical handicaps that even the Force can't fully overcome.
      • What is (mostly) consistent though is that Darth Vader can't use Force Lightning because it would fry the electronics in his armor.
  • RoboCop's body is almost completely mechanical. The only organic parts are his brain, part of his spinal cord, and his face. Murphy's face was peeled off and placed upon a layer of synthetic support as a posthumous honor to the dead cop.
  • Terminators are termed cybernetic organisms, though they can survive without the organic parts. Cameron has said his initial concept had the Terminator would depend on its organic parts, to reflect on how society needs machines. That metaphor didn't make it into the movies. The cyborg terminology is correct in this sense: the flesh is a useful part of the whole stealthed weapon system.
    • The organic parts did, though. While the first three films had Terminators that seemingly lacked any organic part aside from the skin, the fourth one had the infiltration Terminator prototype having substantial wetware including a fully organic heart and a mostly-organic brain.
  • Star Trek:
    • Star Trek: First Contact Data, an android, has organic parts grafted on, to a rather disturbing effect.
    • The Borg, whose name is shortened from Cyborg to Borg. Seven of Nine from Star Trek: Voyager who, though she supposedly had most of her Borg implants removed, always had enough left to solve or create the Crisis of the Week.
    • Geordi LaForge's VISOR and, later, cybernetic replacement eyes.
    • Picard's artificial heart.
    • In one problematic episode of the original series, Spock's brain was stored in a jar and replaced by a remote control receiver.
    • In Deep Space Nine, Vedek Bareil is injured in a shuttlecraft accident and, against Dr. Bashir's advice, has parts of his brain replaced by positronic synapses. They don't work as well as the original. They also can only keep him alive temporarily, as the brain damage was too extensive. The only thing left that could've been tried was replacing all of Bareil's brain with cybernetics, which was rejected for obvious reasons.
  • In Army of Darkness, Ash builds a fully functional artificial hand out of springs and a metal gauntlet. Why? Because he's Ash.
  • Thanks to being blown apart and a Contrived Coincidence or two, Jason Voorhees becomes a cyborg in Jason X.
  • Alice in Resident Evil appears to be this, post-Resident Evil: Apocalypse, at once point in Resident Evil: Extinction being remotely shut down. Nemesis also appears to be some sort of cyborg, with his POV being shown in a blue-tinted robo-vision.
  • In the Ghanaian movie 12:00, a shadowy NGO, in order to develop Ghana, has the plan to turn a part of the Ghanaian population into cyborgs, and then they would act like mobile hospital, sucking out diseases with machines in their abdomens.
  • In I, Robot, Detective Spooner is revealed to be one when he uses what turns out to be an Artificial Limb to fight off one of the evil robots. The cybernetic components include his entire left arm and shoulder.
  • The new Cenobite minions that Pinhead creates in Hellraiser III: Hell On Earth are all fused with modern technology. One shoots CD disks from his mechanical head, another has a projectile camera lodged in his skull, etc.
  • Max DaCosta, the protagonist of Elysium, has an older model Exosuit grafted to his body. Kruger has implants on his body to mount technology to, and facial nodes to interface with tech. Near the end of the film, Kruger mounts a high tech exosuit on his implants.
  • In Godzilla, Mecha-King Ghidorah which a cyborg kaiju from the future sent to the past to fight Godzilla.

    Literature 
  • The Alterien series by Adam R. Brown features a few cyborgs. The technology they're created with can have dangerous consequences for anyone, including Alteriens. Oberon went up against two cyborgs on two different occasions, nearly getting killed both times.
  • Spare Parts by Australian Author, Sally Rogers Davison, is about a girl selling her young healthy human body so she can be implanted in a "cyberform".
  • There's a rather nice example of a more realistic cyborg in Segregationist, a short story by Isaac Asimov. It involves a doctor replacing the heart of his patient. He tries to persuade the patient that an organic prosthetic is the way to go, only for the patient to decide that he doesn't trust it and wants to go with a mechanical heart. We discover at the end that the doctor is actually a robot, one of the few who has not chosen to become more human by surgery while the humans have all been becoming more and more robotic. The implication is that eventually, they'll all slowly morph into one cyborg species.
  • In Daniel Keys Moran's Tales of the Continuing Time,
    • The Peaceforcer Elites are cyborged super soldiers. Gi'Suei'Obodi'Sedon, a purely organic Super Soldier, considers the Elites to be horribly maimed (not to mention, not all that elite).
    • Trent Castanaveras is also modified, in that he had the Tytan NN-II, a "nerve net that's designed to sit in high memory and model what's happening in your brain. It has nearly half a million processors, and makes a discrete connection somewhere inside your brain for every one of them. Once it is installed between your skull and the outer surface of your brain, it doesn't come out."
  • Just like in the rest of Star Wars, the Star Wars Expanded Universe really likes the Artificial Limbs trope. It's not usually explicitly mentioned whether or not they make people stronger, and the prejudice against cyborgs is lessened when they have convincing synthetic flesh covering them, but Ton Phanan feels that his Cybernetics Ate His Future. Interestingly, though he's mentioned as having synthflesh on his limbs, which are once seen to be twitching eerily when malfunctioning, there's none on his face.
  • In the classic short story "Scanners Live in Vain" by Cordwainer Smith, humans are unable to cope with the "Great Pain of Space" and rely on cold sleep ships crewed by habermans whose brain has been severed from all sensory input except the eyes, and whose body therefore has to be regulated by implanted instruments.
  • Alastair Reynolds' is in love with this trope. The Revelation Space universe has the Ultranauts, which are the crews of the slower-than-light interstellar freighters, who use extreme cybernetic replacements to counter the effects of age and help with ship maintenance. Revelation Space novella Diamond Dogs has the main character being slowly, voluntarily being turned from a human into a cybernetic dog like creature with a skull full of computer bits. Unfortunately the doctor who did this took himself apart so he wouldn't have to undo his 'greatest work'. There's also a cyborg in the Steam Punk area of his novel Terminal World, a man whose lungs were crippled in a war; he's linked up to a furnace which powers a pump that replaces most of his chest.
  • Possibly the earliest example of a full-body-replacement cyborg in modern literature is the Tin Woodsman from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz — once a perfectly ordinary human being, he had progressively more parts of his body replaced with tin prosthetics as they were chopped off by a cursed axe — until essentially all that was left was a mind in a tin shell. note 
  • In Soon I Will Be Invincible, by Austin Grossman, the heroine Fatale agrees to have her legs - and right arm - replaced after an accident. The scientists have to modify most of the rest of her body in order to make those parts work. After the experiment she weighs hundreds of pounds because of all of her cybernetic parts. The corporation that funded her reconstruction promptly vanishes, leaving her to pay for the regiment of antibiotics necessary to prevent infection caused by her new parts.
  • Non-humanoid example: The Rat Things in Snow Crash are basically cyborg dogs.
  • Cyborg by Martin Caidin. Later made into The Six Million Dollar Man.
  • Anne McCaffrey's Brainships in the Brainship series are cybernetics carried about as far as possible, with human brains implanted into and in complete control of entire space ships and space stations. It's implied that the human body is still there, but only as a life-support system for the brain.
  • Molly Millions in Neuromancer has retractable razors beneath her fingernails and can see the time by pressing her tongue against a tooth. Most impressively, though, her eyes sockets have been sealed with mirrors and her tear ducts rerouted to her mouth so that, when she cries, she spits.
  • The Star Trek: The Next Generation novel Q Squared featured an inversion of the usual form of this trope. An alternate universe version of Data consisted of a positronic brain in a cloned human body.
  • From Animorphs there's Taylor, a former Alpha Bitch turned Quisling who's been rebuilt with Yeerk technology in exchange for voluntary infestation. One of her arms is a prosthesis capable of deploying various types of deadly gases and possibly a Ray Gun.
  • Harry Potter: Mad-Eye Moody could be a "magical cyborg" given that he replaced a lost eye with a magical one that gives him enhanced abilities. He also has a prosthetic leg, but this isn't described as giving him any extra abilities and is more often than not a hindrance.
  • Lila Amanda Black, the protagonist in Justina Robson's Quantum Gravity series begins as a fairly standard (if fusion-powered) cyborg of the We Can Rebuild Him variety. It all eventually gets subverted and the experimental prototype first-of-your-kind thing gets pulled to tiny little bits.
    • Subverted in the first book, as the cybernetic parts are actually more physically powerful than her body can withstand. Her Super Mode simply involves turning off the governor units that prevent this and flooding her body with painkillers. The first time this is shown in the book, she manages to break her own spine. Fortunately for her, she's back at base when this happens, and spends a while in a regeneration tank instead of a body bag.
  • The Cobra Trilogy by Timothy Zahn feature as their protagonists members of the elite Cobra guerrilla commandos, who receive surgically-implanted skeletal laminations (to make their bones effectively unbreakable), servomotors (to give them superhuman strength), hidden weapons (two small antipersonnel lasers in their fingers, one anti-armor laser in the calf and foot of one leg, an "arc thrower" that shoots an electric current down the ionized trail of one of the finger lasers to fry electronics, sonic projectors, and an emergency self-destruct mechanism), optical and auditory enhancements, a tiny supercomputer to control it all (as well as giving them pre-programmed combat reflexes), and a tiny fusion power plant to power all that. Quite an impressive load-out, especially considering they can still pass for normal civilians, which is necessary because they work in sabotage and subversion in cities captured by their enemies. After the war is over, they find it difficult to re-assimilate into regular civilian life, and most go on to move to a group of new colony planets where they prove themselves equally adept at surviving the ridiculously dangerous local fauna. It should be noted that the Trofts (the enemies in the war) actually believe the Cobras to be unkillable. They're just that good.
    • That said, there are major side effects, including early-onset arthritis.
  • Max Barry's Machine Man has Dr. Charles Neumann spend time as an exceptionally powerful one along with the Security Guard Carl, before ending up just Brain Uploading.
  • Empire from the Ashes: the Fourth Imperium used "biotechnic" enhancement to give it's military personnel Super Strength, Super Speed, Super Senses, and a lot of other things. The main character gets improved versions of the implants.
  • In Roger Zelazny's Creatures of Light and Darkness, blends of man and machine are common on the human worlds. We have the Pleasure-Comps—oracles which are human from the waist down—and one of the ultimate examples, the Steel General, who still wears a ring of his original flesh on his pinky.
  • Mr. Sellars in Tad Williams' Otherland novels is a moderate version; he implanted computer hardware into his own body in order to allow him to connect to the Net without his captors noticing; by the time of the main story he's practically half computer. Treated fairly realistically in that it doesn't make him any stronger; quite the opposite, in fact.
  • Tried and largely rejected in the Noon Universe. It turned out that few people had required psychic plasticity to accept the changes that happened to them, and those that did slowly turned cold and indifferent observers.
  • Same thing happened in Stanislaw Lem's Observation On The Spot, only Turned Up to Eleven. People of Lusania turned to replacing each cell in their bodies by Nanomachines in attempt to reach immortality only to run into the "Who Wants to Live Forever?" wall at full speed. Most of the experimental subjects quickly became obsessed with death, trying to kill themselves at all costs—which, given the nature of their new bodies, became nigh impossible, though most persevered. There was one survivor of the experiment, a philosopher who never had any illusions about the whole experiment to begin with.
  • The Rings of Saturn: Cyborgs, in the future, are typically feared by mundane people because they make for dangerous competition in the job market. On the other hand, the cyborgs seem to frequently think themselves superior to humans, to the point of establishing crime organizations and pulling off acts of terrorism.
  • Incarceron has many people living inside the gigantic, living prison, and a lot of them aren't pure human, but also part robot. This is because nothing is allowed to come into or escape the prison, and as the prison is running out of bodies to use to make new people with, it instead uses metal. An odd case where some of these people have no metal on the outside of their body, so they are impossible to distinguish from normal humans, as the metal is all inside their bodies.
  • In SA Swann's Hostile Takeover series Dominic Magnus/Jonah Dacham has been extensively rebuilt, including a replacement arm and leg, as well as complete skin replacement and facial reconstruction.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Babylon 5 :
    • Shadows use machine-fused humans as Wetware CPUs of their ships. Said humans also are capable of taking over common human tech, which was successfully exploited by protagonists in the series.
    • One of the series features a piece of Organic Technology, capable to fuse with a human and transforming into battle cyborg.
    • White Stars, ships, utilizing both Minbari AND Vorlon tech may be speculated to be this, though in this case both 'living' and 'cybernetic' parts are artificial.
  • Lexx features some, though given its surrealistic setting all examples are questionable to some degree.
    • Common robots in the first season are electronic heads on presumably organic bodies (bodies vanishes after strike of weapons that said to get rid only of organics.)
    • Kai is a mix of decarbonized (i.e. transformed into silicon-based equivalent) flash and rarely seen mechanical parts (located in groin and usually hidden under his trousers).
    • Mantrid, the Big Bad of the second season, was this, firstly being human remnants, supported by advanced tech, and later transloaded into Insect's brain, again, fused with advanced tech.
    • While not being Cyborg per se, Zev is artificially modified.
  • Doctor Who:
    • The Cybermen. The extent to which they're cybernetic varies from story to story; in earlier stories, the Cybermen's biological hands are visible, while in the revived series they're simply human brains transplanted into robot bodies.
    • Similarly we have the Daleks, who are usually assumed at first glance to be robots of some kind, but in actuality the Dalek itself is a small, squidlike creature piloting the famous mechanical exterior. It's not quite clear how integrated Daleks are into their "suits", so whether they're true cyborgs or simply machine operators is up for debate.
      • Footage and descriptions by other characters imply that the Daleks are most likely somewhere between Mechas and cyborgs. The creature proper could exist outside the mechanical shell, but is very small and weak and must be augmented by the mechanical components. In their introduction, Ian Chesterton was able to "drive" a Dalek shell after discarding the creature. The expanded universe indicates that the Dalek creatures are so biologically degenerate that they have no functional digestive system, no vocal cords and even have difficulty breathing on their own; being implanted in their casings is vital for them to survive for any great length of time, and their nervous and circulatory systems are tied directly into the casing's systems. The Dalek voice is harsh and grating because it is entirely artificial.
      • The "New Paradigm" Daleks introduced in Victory of the Daleks have an organic eye visible at the end of their eyestalks. Apparently this is the eye of the internal creature, with its optic nerve extruded down a metal pipe.
    • Davros. Right from his first appearance it's apparent that his chair is also a life support system and he will die within minutes without it. Since the chair can move without Davros needing to use a joystick or other controls it's safe to say it's tied into his nervous system in some way, and of course Davros also has an artificial eye embedded in his forehead. By "The Stolen Earth"/"Journey's End", his one functioning hand had been replaced with a mechanical one capable of shooting electricity from its fingertips.
      • Although Davros is clearly a cyborg, why does he have to have a neural inteface in his earlier appearances? One of his legs could work just well enough to be operating a foot control.
    • The fish-people in "The Underwater Menace", humans fitted with 'plastic gills' and artificial eyes that allow them to see better underwater.
    • "Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS" reveals a character who believed he was an android was in fact a cyborg whose memories had been messed around with by the other crewmembers, apparently out of boredom.
    • The Master had been turned into one by the Doctor in "Scream of the Shalka".
  • The Six Million Dollar Man and his Distaff Counterpart The Bionic Woman.
  • Adam in Season 4 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer takes this to the next level - he is part human, part machine, and part demon.
  • Most if not all Cylons in Battlestar Galactica (Reimagined) are cyborgs. The raiders are almost entirely organic on the inside, and the human-forms are ambiguous. On the one hand, they are extremely difficult to tell from humans. On the other, Sharon once accomplished something useful by cutting her hand open and jamming a fiber-optic cable inside. In a later episode it is stated that the human-form Cylons have some sort of organic optical data port in their hands, which is how they control and receive data from the basestars. Presumably Sharon was inserting the fiber so that she could make a good connection to the Galactica's less advanced hardware. On a Basestar, they just stick their hands in the literal datastream. The Centurions are in fact the only ones who are entirely mechanical.
  • Kamen Rider. It's been a while since this was anything like standard, but the old-school Riders were either (a) kidnapped by bad guys and put through Unwilling Roboticisation to serve them, escaped brainwashing, and kicked Monster of the Week butt (literally. RIDER KIIIIIICK!) or (b) were upgraded by good guys to fight the rising evil organization, usually after losing a friend or family member (or several!) to the bad guys. If Kamen Rider G doesn't count, the last such Rider was Kotaro Minami of Kamen Rider Black and Kamen Rider Black RX, in 1988-89, although Kamen Rider Double's Philip is a person made of data who was used by the bad guys to create the Gaia Memories, which is this trope in spirit.
  • Colonel "Iron Man" Torres is a 19th century version of this in "The Night of the Steel Assassin" from The Wild Wild West.
  • Professor Monster, from the Japanese Spider-Man.
  • Continuum has several cyborgs though they use less technology than most.
    • Kiera Cameron has cybernetic implants in her eyes that give her telescopic, infrared, and night vision capabilities, a "Cellular Memory Review" chip for recording and evaluating information implanted in her brain, and a communications link able to upload and download large amounts of information. When Kiera's CMR is hacked the hackers are even able to take control of her actions. The rest of her abilities come from her suit (which integrates wirelessly with her implants to dramatically improve their overall functionality), her gun, and her multi-tool.
    • Travis Verta, Chen, and Jaworski are all part of the super soldier program with implanted technology similar to Kiera's. Presumably there are some distinctions since her implants are the "police model" and their implants are the "military model" but this is never really explored in detail the series. (For example, Travis' CMR seemed to generate a slightly different set of capabilities when it was integrated with a CPS suit than Kiera's did -when he wore the suit it generated a shield around his head that could protect him from a point blank head shot while her suit was able to generate a wider, weaker field that deflected bullets in a wider area so that she could protect civilians around her). At the start of the series all of the super soldiers have had their implants turned off. Jaworski and Chen are killed before theirs are turned back on but Travis has his reactivated and seems to have at least limited access to some of the abilities of his implants. The super soldiers are also extremely strong, fast, and recover quickly but this seems to be based upon biological modifications and the use of special hormones rather than technology.
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.:
    • Aquila Amador from the episode "Eye Spy" has a cybernetic eye.
    • Mike Peterson becomes Deathlok after being blown up by Centipede, gaining, among others, a cybernetic eye and a bionic leg.
    • Agent Garrett turns out to be a Deathlok prototype.

    Manhwa 
  • Namu of Dorothy of Oz initially believes he is an android (a robot that merely looks human), but it turns out he's actually a cyborg and thus half human. This turns out to be the reason behind his unwillingness to let anyone get killed while he's in the vicinity, which is, of course, a good thing for everyone involved.

    Music 
  • Jonathan Coulton:
    • "The Future Soon" is a song about a jilted schoolkid who daydreams of becoming, among other things, a cyberneticist and then "engineering away" things about him that make him "weak and strange".
    • "Better" is about a man breaking up with his girlfriend because he can't cope with her extensive robotic enhancements.
  • The music video for Broken Bell's "The Ghost Inside" features a cyborg girl. Or maybe she's a gynoid?

    Pinball 
  • The women of Iron Maiden are implied to be this, using thick metal cables and connectors in their hips to interface with a gigantic metal structure.
  • The main character in Data East's RoboCop, of course.

    Radio 
  • Spoofed with the Kenny Everett character Captain Kremmen who has bionic veins and a bionic left foot with a detachable big toe that converts into a space cannon.

    Roleplaying Games 
  • Dino Attack RPG has a player character named Dr. Cyborg, and the Non-Primary Characters General and Frozeen. There is also a cybernetic Mutant T-Rex named Cyrista's Bane.

     Tabletop Games  
  • Cyber Punk gaming is also rife with heavily cybered characters, such as the Street Samurai from Shadowrun and the Solos from Cyberpunk 2020.
    • Cyberspace (Iron Crown Enterprises), Cyberhero (Hero System), GURPS Cyberpunk, Cyborg Commando (New Infinities Productions), Amazing Engine: Kromosome (TSR)...
  • Rifts splits them into several classifications: Cybernetics are basically mechanical prosthetics (which come in fully mechanical or organic Bio-Systems), while Bionics actually augment the user to combat-capable levels, and include weapons. Cyborgs come in three levels: Minor cybernetic/bionic enhancements, Partial Conversion (all limbs and some torso reinforcement) and Full Conversion (Entire body except for the brain and spinal column).
  • Cybernetics factor heavily into the fluff in Warhammer 40,000:
    • The most prevalent example is the Adeptus Mechanicus (and their Chaotic counterparts, the Dark Mechanicus). Mechanicus dogma shuns the weakness of the flesh and encourages its members to increasingly replace their organic parts with cybernetics to become closer to the Omnissiah, to the point that it's almost impossible to tell if there's anything organic left.
    • Servitors, cybernetic automatons used in all aspects of Imperial function, from scribes to maintenance workers to gun platforms. Their personalities and higher mental functions are completely wiped and their bodies are cybernetically rebuilt to whatever function they are meant for. They are usually vat-grown, but criminals, heretics, and failed Space Marine candidates can also face servitor conversion. The Imperium considers fully artificial AI heresy of the highest order, and requires all robotic lackeys of relatively high sophistication to be biologically human, supplemented by cybernetic augmentation. This taboo on A.I. (which stands for "Abominable Intelligence") stems from the Robot War that helped bring in the Age of Strife tens of thousands of years in the past.
    • Space Marines handle this in a number of different ways:
      • The Black Carapace implant, universal to all Space Marines, is a subdermal plastic sheath that neurally interfaces a Marine with his armor.
      • Space Marines commonly get cybernetic replacements for limbs, eyes, organs, etc. that are lost in battle.
      • Dreadnoughts, heavily-armed bipedal mecha which house Marines too physically broken for baseline combat but too strong-spirited to die, secured inside a life-support sarcophagus which is hooked up to the Dreadnought body's motive systems.
      • The Space Wolves make use of animals such as ravens and giant wolves, partly cyborged for better results.
      • The Iron Hands chapter shares the Mechanicus' belief in the superority of cybernetics. Initiates replace one hand with a bionic and continue to add parts as they go.
    • The Necrons appear fully robotic at first glance, but are actually full-body cyborgs created from a long-extinct alien race.
    • Eldar Wraith technology is somewhat similar to the Necron example in that once-living souls are grafted into completely artificial bodies.
    • Orks make extensive use of cybernetics, appropriately enough called cyborks. Due to their extremely tough physiology they can survive having extremely crude and improbable cybernetics added (and in one instance, replacing a large portion of their brain). Also, some Ork tribes make use of gigantic boars, some of which are cybernetically modified into, you guessed it, cyboars.
  • Magic: The Gathering:
    • The denizens of Phyrexia. Upon birth, they are immediately gutted with most of their body parts replaced with mechanical ones. Even the robots they build themselves are borderline cybernetic. Someone dissecting one of their artifact creatures pointed out: "its as though someone started out with a living thing, and then replaced bits piecemeal until there was nothing of the original left."
    • The denizens of the Esper shard of the Alara plane use a metallic substance with numerous useful properties called etherium in making themselves human/mechanical hybrids.
  • The Fading Suns setting similarly has the option to outfit characters with cybernetic parts. What makes it interesting is that the available enhancements run the full technological spectrum, from simple metal and ceramic limb replacements, to synthetic flesh, to nanobots.
  • Dead Lands: Hell On Earth subverts, inverts, reverts, and blipverts the trope. Basically, in the universe it's impossible to make enough room in a human body to insert any relevant cybernetics. However, there is plenty of room in an undead body since the undead don't need any bits other than the brain anyway. This has the added advantage that with a bit of Mad Science jiggery-pokery you can run the machine parts on the spiritual energies used to create the undead.
  • Mage: The Ascension from the Old World of Darkness included Iteration X, "mages" who could do impossible things with cybernetics and robotics. Besides generally being cyborgs themselves, they frequently made use of HIT Marks against their enemies. Occasionally other science-focused mages, even in the Traditions, also created cyborgs. The degree to which Cybernetics Ate Your Soul varied with the amount of replacement and the manner in which your storyteller enforced the Resonance and Paradox rules. As a nice nod to reality, people with any kind of cybernetic enhancements have to get a full-body reinforcement.
  • In Paranoia, humans in the robot-loving Corpore Metal secret society often get cybernetic replacements. Inverted by Corporganic, whose robotic members sometimes get organic replacements ("orgcybing").
  • Exalted has these in the Alchemicals sourcebook. Any Alchemical with an Obvious charm qualifies, as well as many that don't.
  • New Horizon has the Prometheans.
    • Oddly, the cybernetic enhancements are stated to be tailor-made to an individual's biochemistry, preventing both interchangeable prosthetics and cybernetic enhancement to the genetically altered Medeans. Hmm.
  • The d20 Modern supplement d20 Future has some coverage of this topic and Cyberscape expands on it.
    • Cyberscape also adds alternate cybernetics, including Golemtech and Necrotic Implants (Golem and Necromancy based cybernetics respectively), for a Magitek twist on the cyborg.
  • The Word of Blake in BattleTech have plenty of these in their ranks.
  • Basically everyone in Eclipse Phase, apart from the comparatively few flats in the Jovian Republic, has some sort of cybernetic enhancement, even if it's only a basic mesh insert
  • The Yu-Gi-Oh! card game has quite a few monsters that qualify, the most obvious being Cyborg Doctor. Others include Nanobreaker (who is based on Jake, the protagonist of a Konami video game with the same name as the card), Battle Footballer (as seen by its card text), and maybe D.D. Warrior Lady, who seems to have at least a bionic arm, and maybe a few other cybernetics.

     Video Games  
  • The Grekim, a race of giant alien squid from the game Achron, have done this to their entire species. They now need the same resources that humans use for building factories in order to reproduce.
    • The Vecgir also seem to have been greatly 'enhanced'. At the very least they were implanted with neural implants that enslaved them.
  • The Master Chief and the rest of the SPARTAN-II Super Soldiers in the Halo universe have a neural interface implanted in their brains to allow them to properly control their Powered Armor, as well as reinforced skeletons. The rank-and-file members of the human military also receive neural implants, but they're not as advanced as the SPARTAN's.
  • Ditto Halo's Spiritual Predecessor Marathon, where the skeleton, musculature, and nervous systems of dead soldiers were augmented with various technology (possibly including some Lost Technology from Sufficiently Advanced Aliens that had previously originated an ancient race of Uplifted Animals) to create the Mjolnir battleroids. They can pass so well for normal, even they aren't always aware of their true nature prior to “activation.”
    • Also, Durandal's BoB army are equipped standard with implanted Electronic Eyes.
    • For that matter, the entire S'pht race are cyborgs. Somehow, their mechanical parts reproduce themselves along with the organic ones when new S'pht are created. Indeed, they are even unsure whether or not they'd even be sentient without their mechanical parts.
      • The Pfhor use a kind of soldier called a cyborg as well: this one looks like a giant, deformed human torso stuck on top of some tank treads.
  • Raiden started out in Metal Gear Solid 2 as a human but in Metal Gear Solid 4, he showed up as a cyborg ninja. Gray Fox also became a cyborg ninja in MGS.
  • Cybernetics have become more widespread and advanced by the time of Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance. Many of the enemies Raiden faces are fellow cyborgs. The most extreme example is Senator Armstrong, who has so many nanomachines in his body that he's a cyborg on the cellular level.
  • All of the pirates in Black Market seem to be enthusiastic about cybernetics, much to everyone else's disgust.
  • In the Command & Conquer Tiberium series the Brotherhood of Nod make use of cybernetics for their elite forces, first seen during the events of Command & Conquer: Renegade and later much more prominently in Command & Conquer: Tiberian Sun. During the Firestorm expansion, however, Nod's combat AI goes rogue and takes the cyborgs with him, so when Tiberium Wars rolls around cyborg forces are conspicuously absent. The Kane's Wrath expansion brings them back in the form of the Marked of Kane, made up of Nod's fallen soldiers resurrected through technology and linked to the new LEGION AI.
    • One of Red Alert's expansions featured a cyborg commando named Volkov and his cybernetic dog Chitzkoi, the former capable of surviving a shootout with an Allied cruiser and the latter able to leap all over the battlefield to tear out the throats of enemy infantry.
      • In Zero Hour's Contra mod, General Algrin "A.I" Ironhand has cyborgs instead of rangers as his basic infantry.
  • Dr. Curien's most powerful experiments in House of the Dead (the video games, not the movie; curse you, Uwe Boll!) involve using electronics as well as scientific necromancy. Note The Magician and The Wheel of Fate.
  • See also Dr. Tokentäkker in the sideshow spoof Carn Evil, who is Curien in a pun-filled circus of mayhem. You'd think someone on the HOTD team would have thought to buy the rights to distribute and plunked it as download content or a limited edition disc with some of the HOTD games.
  • In Resistance Resistance: Fall Of Man, the Chimera have heat sinks implanted in their backs to keep them from cooking themselves in the middle of battle, thanks to their hyperactive metabolism. This is why the Chimera change London's weather to freezing winter in the first game. The Grey Jack enemies are stock Hybrids who have lived so long their heat sinks have broken down, and their bodies are breaking down because of it.
  • The Terrans in Starcraft do so slightly for their Marines, and heavily for their Ghosts, who not only have inhibitors, but also other enhancements to increase their effectiveness including ocular implants. The Protoss, on the other hand, have Dragoons, which are fallen comrades brought back in robotic bodies. Dragoons are especially revered among their people for their dedication and bravery. Starcraft II will feature the Dark Templar equivalent, Warp Stalkers, as well as the new breed of Dragoon, the Immortals.
  • In Team Fortress 2 one of the unlockable weapons, the Gunslinger, is a mechanical hand, designed by Radigan Conagher, the grandfather of one of the playable characters, some time around the turn of the 20th century. The arm is capable of holding a pistol and a shotgun, makes punches hurt the enemy as much as a wrench hit, and from a gameplay standpoint, gives +20% MAX HP and lets the Engineer deploy Mini-Sentries instead of the normal Sentries. The Gunslinger is designed to be mounted on an arm stump, replacing the hand. The Engineer didn't meet the requirement of not having a hand. At first.
  • A common costume part in City of Heroes and City of Villains. All Freakshow have metal parts replacing some or all of their limbs, as have many Arachnos troopers. Nemesis, and the Malta Titans, are essentially brains in robotic bodies. One interesting version is the Vahzilok, cyborgized zombies.
  • Ziggy in Xenosaga was revived and turned into a cyborg roughly one hundred years after committing suicide. Interestingly, cyborgs are actually considered obsolete by the time the series takes place. Also, T-elos, a cyborg created from the (surprisingly well-preserved) corpse of Mary Magdalene.
  • In Deus Ex, Gunther and Anna are the classic mechanical cyborgs, showing all the nifty dermal plates and robotic appendages that come with the territory. JC Denton and his brother Paul appear to be a highly advanced model based on a nanotech platform with fluid upgrade capabilities and ability to pass completely for human, except that their eyes glow.
    • Adam Jensen from Deus Ex: Human Revolution is a sleeker version of Anna and Gunther from twenty years earlier. Replacements (due to heavy damage and being shot in the head) include prosthetic arms, legs, eyes, part of the head and most of the torso. It's heavily implied, but not confirmed until later, that Jensen is now more machine than man: his arms, legs, and large portions of his chest have been replaced with augmentations, and his cranium is at least 25% mechanical.
      • Jensen also has the ability to unlock new features in his existing augmentations (justified as a process of naturalization: the longer he spends with his augmentations, the more he gets used to them, and the more his brain can naturally reach the many features to "turn them on"). These include the ability to run silently, jump higher, see through walls, fall from any height without injury, and launch explosive ball-bearing sized munitions from his arms in a 360 degree arc.
      • Jensen is far from the only example. Many people in the game can be seen with mechanical limbs, including Adam's boss David Sarif who replaced one of his arms with an augment to improve his baseball performance. Adam also is not the most heavily augmented character seen, though he's pretty close — one villain has apparently replaced his entire body from the neck down and even his head seems to be mostly mechanical. Jensen is unique in that thanks to gene therapy experiments performed on him as a baby, his body can accept augmentation without relying on the drug that every other augmented person needs to avoid rejection syndrome.
  • In Quake IV, your character gets "Stroggified" and rescued literally the moment before he gets brainwashed. Before that, his legs were cut off and replacements stuck on, and something was done to his hands and chest, and he got a translator chip stuck in his head. See it here! Result? He runs and jumps faster and understands Strogg. Of course, other humans are distrustful of him, but he never protests.
  • The main character of Bionic Commando is an early example of this.
  • Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri features the "Bioenhancement Center" base facility, which increases the morale (i.e. experience level) of all units built at a base by 2. The "Cyborg Factory" Secret Project, the movie for which provides the page quote, places a Bioenhancement Center in each one of your bases for free. In addition, several technologies have to do with varying levels of cyborgdom, most notably "Neural Grafting" (which enables Bioenhancement Centers), "Mind/Machine Interface" (which enables The Cyborg Factory and for some reason allows you to build helicopters) and "Homo Superior" (which is explained in-game as creating cyborg Ubermenschen—complete with a quote from Friedrich Nietzsche).
    • And lest we forget: The Cybernetic Consciousness faction, composed entirely of humans merged with AIs, making them cyborgs of a different sort (rather than human brain in a mechanical body, organic and silicon minds fused together in a body of any kind). That they are a faction also makes them a Robot Republic.
  • Kanon of Wild ARMs 2, who replaced most of her body with mechanical parts to become a demon hunter after a demon attack on her village left her mostly crippled.
  • Wild ARMs 4 has the chainsaw-wielding Balgaine, which explains his immense strength as well as his weakness to Jude's Short Circuit technique.
  • In Alien Vs Predator Capcom, the two Human characters are said to be Cyborgs. Dutch is obviously so, while Linn's cybernetics are only apparent by the fact that she can fight on even terms with a Predator or Xenomorph bare-handed.
    • The first PC Aliens Vs Predator FPS gave us the Xenoborg. Yes, Weyland-Yutani thought putting armor and a lethal laser weapon system on a Xenomorph was a good idea. Yes, the things go berserk and start killing people.
  • The protagonist of Iji, as well as every single alien, is augmented with nanomachines that make her stronger, sturdier, and allow her to command her Nanogun.
  • The Agent in Crackdown, is essentially a living Evolving Weapon.
  • The human race in the Mega Man ZX series is co-evolving with Reploids into something else. There was also Dr. Light, who was strongly implied to be an infomorph, and Hub Hikari/Megaman.EXE, who definitely was.
  • Mother 3 contains several cyborg-style animals along with Mix-and-Match Critters, as well as the Masked Man, a human cyborg. And then there's New Fassad and Miracle Fassad.
  • Cyborgs are commonplace in Mass Effect, ranging from chips in the fingertips to use holographic keybords, artifical arms and organs, electronic eyes, memory chips inside the brain, etc. Cybernetics are so advanced that the President of the United North American States was able to remain in office by transferring most of his neural functions into a computer. Then there are biotics, individuals capable of telekinses and other feats; they require a "bio-amp" attached to the brainstem in order to actually use them.
    • Actually there are two types of cybernetics that human biotics need: "Implants" which allows biotic power to be used ranging from L2 to L5.n and L5.x, and "amps" which, well, amplify biotic power to non-uselessness. The difference between the two is that amps are detachable without causing damage to the user.
  • In Mass Effect 2, Commander Shepard is brought back from the dead, and is not entirely human anymore. While Shepard could've been brought back wholly human, that process would have taken more time than Cerberus had. As a result, the Commander is mostly human, albeit with a number of modifications, usually beneficial ones (the ability to survive a poisoning that would have killed anyone else, for example).
    • Calling Shepard "mostly human" is somewhat misleading; after the surgery, his/her combat capabilities are considerably advanced. You can even buy upgrades for his/her body, making his/her skin capable of withstanding considerable gunfire and increasing strength to point of being able to win fistfights with creatures two or three times the average human's size. And even without those upgrades, s/he can use weaponry that has kickback so forceful they are physically impossible for even the genetically modified soldiers of the day to use without being seriously wounded.
      • The "upgrades" for Shepard are said in the item descriptions to not be upgrades to Shepard's cybernetic components, but are a type of genetic engineering/cybernetics in and of themselves.
    • Overlord showed off some of the deepest extensions of Shepard's cybernetics. S/he actually gets hacked near the end of the story, allowing him/her to view the memories of the Overlord subject.
    • In Mass Effect 3, Shepard has a discussion with EDI where they discuss whether this means they are technically "Transhuman", given that there has been apparently a lot of discussion amongst the Council races over the legal ramifications of Transhumanism. EDI proceeds to claim that Shepard is not one, though it should be noted that an earlier conversation had her mention that she's learnt to lie, implying that she might have done so for Shepard's benefit.
    • In one of the endings of ME3, every living being in the galaxy becomes cyborgified.
  • Kurtis from Disgaea was rebuilt as one after surviving an explosion.
  • The Cyborg class in Ghouls Vs Humans. He actually looks indistinguishable from a robot. He had to be made into a half-man half-machine after barely surviving an attack by a ghoul, and is now going on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge to avenge his family. But at least he's got a bitchin' plasma cannon and a jetpack.
  • Genesect from Pokémon Black and White, which resembles a prehistoric insect that was revived and had its missing body parts lost during its fossilization replaced with cybernetic ones.
  • Fallout
    • In the Fallout: New Vegas add-on "Old World Blues," The Courier is abducted by sentient brains who replace your brain, spine and heart with advanced Tesla coils that grant you immunity to poison, resistance to damage as well as enhanced strength and other benefits. Even after completing the main quest and (possibly) restoring said body parts, some advanced technology still remains in the Courier's body.
    • Plus the seven SPECIAL implant (one for each attribute), the regeneration implant, the sub dermal armor (these 9 ones are in the vanilla game). "Old World Blues" also adds an implant which increases damage output against cazadores by 10%, another that increases crouch speed, another which filters drinking radiation, and a last one for getting action points and more health from food, plus the level 30 perk Implant GRX (a Turbo Implant). When you get all these, the Courier is more machine than man at this point.
    • Additionally, there's Rex (the pet dog of the head member of the Kings), who has robotic legs and hindquarters.
    • Fallout 3 has no implants but does have Cyborg as a perk, and a cyborg follower, Star Paladin Cross.
    • Fallout 2 allows the Chosen One to strip the plates from a set of combat armor and implant them under his/her skin. There are also special "memory modules" which enhance some of the SPECIAL statistics.
  • Cyborg enemies and cyborg augmentations feature prominently in Space Siege. Ever more heavily augmented cyborg enemies take up much of the second and third acts, replacing the Scary Dogmatic Aliens from act 1 completely by act 3.
  • The name Shatterhand is not only the name of the game, but the code name given to the hero after he gets bionic fists.
  • From Skullgirls comes Peacock, a cyborg on the more fantastic side of the spectrum. Her arms are clearly mechanical, made of sections of metal with three large eyes attached to each arm. Concept sketches of her (her outfit is not very revealing) show that her legs and other parts of her body appear mechanical as well. It's unclear just how much of Peacock's original body is left, if anything but her brain and her face.
    • It's possible that Painwheel from the same game could be considered one as well with the large pinwheel-like blade coming out of her spine. These two are both products of the Anti-Skullgirl Labs, so it's likely that other cyborgs are present in the story as well.
    • Big Band follows along the same lines, fused together with an iron lung and an assortment of various musical instruments after suffering a brutal beatdown at the hands of dirty cops.
  • Many of the monsters in Parasite Eve 2 have some sort of cybernetic implant on their bodies. Most are implied to be some sort of life support. There are also the Golems, twelve-foot tall ape-man cyborgs armed with everything from grenade launchers to flaming machetes. No.9 in particular makes Vader-esque ventilator noises when he breathes.
  • XCOM: the Floater in both versions of the game falls in into this catagory-his core organs have been removed and replaced with a cybernetic life support system including a flight unit (in either antigravity or jetpack flavors, depending on version). The Lobsterman in Terror From The Deep either qualifies or is a combat android with some organic components.
    • In XCOM: Enemy Within the X-COM troopers can have their limbs cut off and replaced with massive robotic arms and legs. However they can remove the massive limbs are swap them out with normal sized limbs for when they are milling around the base.
  • In Marvel vs. Capcom: Clash of the Superheroes, we got Shadow Lady, a non-canon variation of Chun-Li, turned into a cyborg by Shadow, who is another non-canon variation of a Street Fighter character, this time Street Fighter Alpha's Charlie. She looks like Chun-Li, but she ends up shooting missiles from her back, thrusting forward with a drill, and one of her super attacks is a energy blast.
  • BioForge is about a secret facility turning kidnapped people into relentless, killing cyborgs with a host of enhancements, including a concealed Arm Cannon.
  • BioShock Infinite has the Handymen, giant mechanical brutes with gorilla like builds. They are made from people who were terminally ill, or dying(or not) people who are converted into robotic enforcers, the only parts they have that are still human are the head and heart.
  • Mortal Kombat has Cyrax and Sektor, who debuted in Mortal Kombat 3. Highly trained assassins of a Chinese guild, they are subjected to a cybernization process that strips them of their humanity and free will but allows them to retain their skills and knowledge while also beefing up their physical abilities. Cyrax was not willing but Sektor believed this was the evolution of the clan. In the original canon, Smoke is also subjected to the procedure but in the new canon started by Mortal Kombat 9, Sub-Zero VI takes his place.
  • Sergeant Rex "Power" Colt is a Mark IV cyborg and the main protagonist of Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon. Fellow soldiers Spider and Sloan are also cyborgs, as is the army of Mark V cyborgs Rex mercilessly slaughters while making cheesy puns.
  • Robopon has Dr. Zero, who has a robotic arm and possibly other body parts, if his metal shoes are anything to go by. After Prince Tail's father defeated him, he repaired his body with the latest robotics engineering.

     Web Comics  
  • Daisy Archanis from Last Res0rt has a potent prosthetic leg... that's detachable (presumably for upgrades). It helps her about as often as it hurts her.
  • Sluggy Freelance:
    • Shows up as part of a Borg parody. Riff and Torg actually become cyborgs for a couple strips, but have all their cybernetic implants taken away when they get kicked out of the Collective.
    • The Mecha Easter Bunny is created partly based on the original Easter Bunny's DNA, but is only organic on the surface, much like a Terminator.
    • Dr. Crabtree hasn't got any specific part replaced with cybernetics but is so full of integrated nanites (microscopic robots) throughout that she is capable of things impossible for humans but would go splat if exposed to an EMP.
  • Michelle Flammel from Monsterful, she can transform into a PHC (Psychotic Homunculus Cyborg) by fusing with her guardian golem Ourox, Gaining tons of gadgets, from the classic Arm Cannon, to Jetpacks and more.
  • In Harkovast Shogun has a mechanical hand that can crush metal. How this was constructed using the medieval technology levels of Harkovast has yet to be explained.
  • In The Inexplicable Adventures of Bob!, the giantess Djali ("Jolly") is given cybernetic parts to help her move and respirate at a size that would otherwise run up against the Square/Cube Law. Since the Nemesites explicitly have technology to reduce an object's mass and to manipulate gravity, this isn't too unreasonable.
  • Bob and George: Mike has half his body replaced with robotic parts. Typically, he wonders whether he's robotic or a freeloader.
  • The lunar ambassador's bodyguard in Chapter 2 of The Water Phoenix King has both arms replaced with densely-folded ribbons of razor-edged, thought-controlled metal. It's explicitly described as Magitek and other artifacts of the same sort exist.
  • After Tavros from Homestuck was confined to a wheelchair due to Killer Game Master Vriska, Kanaya sawed off his legs while he was sleeping so Equius could fit him with newly-built robot legs instead.
    • Vriska gets a robotic arm (also made by Equius) after her original one gets blown off. Aradia may be an additional case, as she spends a good part of the plot as a ghost-sprite inhabiting a realistic robot (again, made by Equius).
  • In Impure Blood, one of Roan's opponents in the Gladiator Games.
  • Several characters in Schlock Mercenary. Company chef Ch'vorthq after sacrificing his own limbs got cybernetic replacements that were originally being used by Der Trihs, Elf was going in oversized, armoured 'Odin Boots' when her legs got blown off before eventually getting them regrown and one of the background members of the company was a member of a species who had one mind occupying two bodies connected by an organic radio link who for a hypercomm node installed to extend his range allowing him to pilot two tanks at once. The most stand out example would be DoytHaban, a mercenary who had an extensive upgrade system, including the Haban AI.
    • Haban II is an... odd example. Originally just a gate clone of DoytHaban he got shot in the head, killing Doyt but leaving the Haban AI unaffected. Medical technology allowed the missing brain tissue to be regrown but as a blank slate, allowing Haban to... move in.
    • Also, "common" soldier boosts got some parts interfaced to the user's brain.
    Kathryn: That's terrifying.
    Ennesby: It's awesome! It makes you meat-sacks a lot more like me.
    Kathryn: That's what I just said.
  • In Cwynhild's Loom, Cwynhild is a cybernetically enhanced human, though her enhancements are mostly internal and not visible to the naked eye.
  • In A Beginner's Guide to the End of the Universe, the Everyman's two companions, Snuffy the pooch and Chairman Jack the giant sparrow, are gradually upgraded by him (with his Reality Warper powers) into more and more powerful cyborgs.
  • In Commander Kitty, we have Nin Wah, a red panda with a cybernetic arm that can convert into an Arm Cannon.
  • In Not A Villain, The Dude refers to Kleya as one. When we see her in Reality, she does appear to have metal implants in her spine and the back of her hands.
  • Among The Chosen has secondary cyborg characters Tantek and Xand, as well as a host of minor ones, though it tends to blur the line between this and Bio-Augmentation.
  • Kimiko Ross from Dresden Codak cyborgified herself after having received very severe injuries during the Hob Story Arc.

     Web Original  
  • The Kung from Pay Me, Bug! are "known for three things: their skill at robotics, their enthusiastic embrace of slavery as a commercial venture, and their tendency to replace parts of their body with machinery."
  • Several of the heroes and villains in the Global Guardians PBEM Universe qualify in one way or another. Robotman is a Brain in a Jar, while La Constructeuse gets her powers from various mechanical and electronic implants.
  • Present in Orion's Arm, and very diverse, ranging all over the scale of biology-vs-technology.
  • There are plenty of them in the Whateley Universe. At the Whateley Academy there's She-Bot. One of the Powers Lab teachers has a couple robotic limbs, probably from when he used to be a superhero (although that's just guessed by one of the protagonists). And the dreaded supervillain Deathlist is all robot except for his brain and his face.
  • The protagonist of Robo Girl.
  • Cybernetics is a growing industry in Nexus Gate.
  • Quirky Misadventures Of Soldine The Cyborg
  • After her assimilation was broken and she turned human again in To Boldly Flee, The Nostalgia Chick still maintained robotic abilities.
  • SCP-191
  • A number of characters in Worm have cybernetics. Defiant/Armsmaster upgrades himself with robotic limbs and a number of other augmentations after suffering severe injuries, Mannequin sealed himself into a puppetlike body, and Bonesaw has given herself a prehensile spine, among other things.

     Western Animation  
  • Gargoyles has two recurring villains, Jackal and Hyena, become cyborgs in order to gain new, more deadly abilities. Coldstone is a cyborg as well: a character for whom robotic parts (and magic) were used to join three fragmented Gargoyle corpses (and minds).
  • The Irkens in Invader Zim takes this one step further; they are implanted with back-mounted devices known as 'paks' immediately following decanting. The pak contains the actual mind of the Irken; their body is essentially only meat used by the pak to interact with its surroundings (a good analogy would be to compare the pak with the hard drive of a computer; the irken's brain is the processor). We also have the more classical mechanical-limbs-and-eye Sergeant Hobo in the Hobo 13 episode, and the Irken Tak, who also sports a cable implanted in her head (which may be the source of her neural suggestion power.
  • Inspector Gadget
  • Transformers Generation 1 episode Autobot Spike has Spike's mind being transferred to a mechanical body while his human body underwent risky surgery. Also, nearly every Transformer from the Beast era, which were the opposites of the typical cyborg, being robots who had living tissue grafted onto them.
    • Doctor Arkeville in Transformers Generation 1 too. At first he has just a mechanical right hand as well as the upper part of his skull. In the episode Countdown to Extinction, after he attempts to double cross Starscream in Cybertron he gets inconscious due to an electric discharge and awakens with half of his body cyborgized and strapped to a mechanical wheelchair

    • Also seen in the technorganic Blackarachnia, Waspinator and Sari Sumdac in Transformers Animated.
    • As well as all the Headmaster, Powermaster, and Triggermaster characters in both the cartoon and comic books, as the Transformers themselves were now partly organic, but the human or Nebulan character they'd bonded to underwent extensive cybernetic implants as part of the bonding process.
  • The heroes in Robotix were aliens who got their minds transferred into Humongous Mecha without their consent.
  • The title characters from Challenge Of The Go Bots are cyborgs of the Brain in a Jar variety, being organic brains installed in Transforming Mecha bodies.
  • Godzilla: The Series has Cyber-Godzilla, the resurrected form of GINO.
  • Doc Terror and Hacker from Centurions, as well as some of their Evil Minions.
  • Technically, all of the lead characters in Adventures of the Galaxy Rangers, as they have an experimental cybernetic implant that acts as an Amplifier Artifact. Team leader Zachary Foxx is a more extreme case, having undergone an Emergency Transformation after being gunned down in the pilot episode. Over half his body is replaced by cyberware, including having an Arm Cannon installed.
  • The SilverHawks, as the Theme Song is fond of reminding us, are partly metal, partly real!
  • The Platyborg from Phineas and Ferb The Movie. An evil, brainwashed cyborg Perry from another dimension.
  • In American Dad! Stan becomes one in the future.
  • The villainous Bioborgs of Skysurfer Strike Force, except for possibly the main villains daughter.
  • Who else?—Cyborg from Teen Titans.
  • The Mighty Ducks: Dr. Droid (AKA Otto Maton) had most of his body replaced with mechanical parts (Not because he was in an accident, but because he "got a kick out of it").
  • Grojband: Trina Riffin gets turned into one for a good chunk of "Ahead of our Own Tone" after she was the first guinea pig - er... "Lucky Customer" to try out the new Blab Tab in-brain Implant, which caused her to undergo an Evil Makeover upon getting her brain implanted.

    Real Life 
  • Pacemakers. Cochlear implants. Hearing aids. Bionic eyes. Artifical arms. Dentures. The age of cyborgs is already upon us! Repent!
    • Bone-anchored hearing aids have existed for decades now, too, although they're quite expensive, a bit exotic compared to ordinary hearing aids and cochlear implants, and come with a few (usually easily mitigated) complications. Essentially, a titanium implant is surgically affixed to part of the bone that comprises the human skull and linked to an abutment embedded in the soft skin tissue; the whole arrangement is strategically placed, such that an electronic device that posts to the abutment picks up sound and transmits it through the implant and the bone directly to the inner ear organs — which makes it possible for people deaf in at least one ear (due to either conductive, congenital, or unilateral hearing loss) to hear sound on that side.
    • Glasses/Corrective lenses and contacts lenses
    • If we included purely mechanical aids, this trope is Older Than Feudalism, if not Older Than Dirt.
    • In the broadest sense, even clothes probably qualify, as artificial "skin" that improves upon our own flimsy human integument. And artificial hands too, if they have pockets.
  • The Hybrot: one thousand rat neurons on a circuitboard remotely controlling a small robot. Now that's good biology. Warhammer 40,000 here we come.
  • Stephen Hawking and Kevin Warwick. The former depends on cybernetics to move and communicate because of his disease. The latter is a cybernetics researcher who interfaced his nervous system with computers to remotely control his home, operate a robotic arm, and telepathically communicate with his wife just to demonstrate the technology's Potential Applications (and probably also For the Lulz).
  • Meet Rob Spence, The Eyeborg. after an accident with a shotgun that resulted in his right eye being completely destroyed, he had said eye replaced with a camera that can actually track his vision and transmit video to a handheld receiver. He was actually hired by Square Enix to host a promotional documentary for Deus Ex: Human Revolution, showcasing several real-life people with advanced prosthetics, as well as talking about their future development.
    • Which was the second offer that he got with because of that. The first was that Intelligence and Documentary services wanted him to go to the Middle East as he would have a camera that no one could spot and so could film things that no one else could.
  • North Carolina State University have created and demonstrated cyborg cockroaches. The roaches are remote controlled through a lightweight wireless receiver attached to the roach's antennae and cerci, sending signals that trick the roach into thinking it is avoiding an obsctacle or a predator, in essence "herding" it with a surprising degree of accuracy. The planned applications include using them to find disaster survivors trapped in rubble or damaged structures.
  • If we widen the definition, bicycle-riders count.
  • The CIA once attempted to deploy a cat rigged with a surgically-implanted bugging device to listen in on Soviet diplomats' park bench conversations. The project failed when the world's only cyborg spy-cat was hit by a car on its first "mission".


Cybernetics Eat Your SoulRobot Roll CallLiving Ship
Cuckoo NestMedical HorrorDeadly Doctor
Combo Platter PowersStock SuperpowersDetect Evil
Brain UploadingCyberpunk TropesDesigner Babies
Eldritch AbominationSliding Scale of AnthropomorphismRidiculously Human Robots
Cybernetics Eat Your SoulTranshumanDesigner Babies
SCP FoundationUsefulNotes/World War IDastardly and Muttley in Their Flying Machines
RoboCop (1987)ImageSource/Live-Action FilmsOne-Way Visor
Cybernetics Eat Your SoulSpeculative Fiction TropesCyborg Helmsman

alternative title(s): Hollywood Cyborg; Cyber Augmentation
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