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Fanfic / Reverse Engineering for Fun and Profit

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Reverse Engineering For Fun and Profit is the third major Planetary Annihilation Self-Insert fic. It is being written by TikiTau.

Line Commander Gamma-44268 of the Legio Indominus gets a worm containing the personality of Spacebattles member TikiTau. And then gets knocked into a planet hard enough to sleep through a few geological ages. Once awake, the story begins.

Spacebattles thread,Sufficient Velocity Thread.


  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot: Averted with most of the Artificial Intelligences created by Gamma, who are rather decent people. This is also averted by Gamma himself, who is definitely a good guy.
    • Down Played in regards to the Plasma Bats: while they are extreme pyromaniacs, they aren't really evil, and their insanity isn't normally a problem for Gamma.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Nova lost a few limbs when Gamma's forces rescued her. Luckily, Gamma made her prosthetics that work just as well as the old ones.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Gamma is on his way there, but he hasn't quite reached it yet.
    • Unlike most Planetary Annihilation fics, Gamma lacks the numbers and technology advantage to roll over most enemies. His prefered tactic to disable enemy forces is cracking their computer systems.
    • We do see a curb-stomp against the Zerg on Char, done with orbital support and plenty of artillery.
    • Gamma is unlikely to have as significant a curbstomp against other forces as other Commanders because of the Legion's lack of supermaterials and their simple unit designs. From Tiki, in response to a question about Legion Diamondbacks getting taken out by Heratic Geth:
    Sure, they can make elite super units with ridiculously advanced materials and abilities, and do so (Nova's Yacht, Arkships and Warships, Leeroy Gibbs' prototype CMC Armor, Commander Gamma's v2 body that has DIGITS and can turn into a flying gunbrick, for example)...buuuut the Legion's R&D Flotilla does recall that they do work for a Commander, so part of their thing is Maximum Utility for Minimum Cost.
  • Fix Fic:
    • In the StarCraft universe, Gamma outright prevents Kerrigan's capture and infestation on Tarsonis, makes peace between the Terrans and the Protoss, and kills Narud, ensuring that Amon's plans will not come to pass (at least for now).
      • Gamma also goes out of his way to rescue Nova, preventing her from becoming a ghost.
    • In the Mass Effect universe, Gamma is currently working to get the Quarians back to their homeworld without destroying the Geth.
  • Grew Beyond Their Programming: One of the fic's big selling points: Gamma's initial robots are based on adjutants and are given the ability to adapt to tactics, unintentionally giving them a veterancy system, where older bots will survive longer because they have more simulations to draw upon. This ends up causing several of the bots to become sentient, with several of the more advanced machines being created sentient.
    • As a side effect, this means the story has quite a few major characters besides the Self-Insert.
  • Lower-Deck Episode: Several of the chapters feature scenes involving Sergeant Leeroy Gibbs, a Confederate Sergeant who ends up involved with A LOT of the legion's activities. Eventually, he ends up goingon his own journey across the multiverse. Unfortunately, it starts with him teleporting onto the USG Ishimura.
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  • Unnecessarily Large Vessel: The Arkships that Gamma reverse engineered from the Protoss.
  • Ramming Always Works: Done with a modified Terran Battlecruiser. Performing close-air support against a Tal'drim Colossus. After being hastily filled with a binary explosive. It's very effective, and also freaks out the Terrans.
  • Southern-Fried Private: Gibbs.
  • Stop Helping Me!: Vergil's introduction.
  • Too Dumb to Fool: Sergeant Leeroy Gibbs, who twigs onto the fact that the Gamma Legion is a bunch of disguised robots.
  • Wham Episode: Chapter 15: During the assault on Tarsonis, it's revealed that Mengsk has access to Psi-Emitters, despite Gamma's efforts to prevent this. Furthermore, it turns out that Narud has caught onto Gamma and has sicked the Tal'Darim on the Tarsonis. Combined with the Protoss, this leads to a four way battle for control of the planet.
  • You Have Researched Breathing: The fic's other main selling point: ROB gutted Gamma's list of schematics from vanilla Planetary Annihilation, as well as his ability to design new units from scratch, meaning he has to scan-in existing units from any faction he comes across to ensure that he has an army.

Example of: