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Cute Machines

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"I have no idea what they're saying. But I love 'em! Look how cute you are!"
Jinmay (meeting the Super Robot Monkeys for the first time), Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go!

Sometimes, a robotic character, despite its composition of hard circuits and cold metal, completely melts your heart. Often just as lovable as their flesh and blood counterparts, these little guys/gals steal the show and the audience's affection. Non-robotic machines such as vehicles and appliances can also qualify for this trope, provided they come off as recognizable "cute" to human eyes.

The name of this trope comes from a song by Scars On Broadway.

Sometimes overlaps with Robot Kid, Robot Buddy, Funny Robot, Robot Dog, Amusing Alien, Fem Bot, and Robot Girl. Fun Size also helps. If they're Mecha-Mooks, they're also Adorable Evil Minions.

Contrast Uncanny Valley, where the machine fails to be cute despite trying, and Mechanical Monster as well as Unnecessarily Creepy Robot, who don't even bother trying. Starfish Robots can be this trope if done right.


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    Anime & Manga 

    Asian Animation 

    Comic Books 

    Fan Works 
  • In the Abridged Series Friendship is Witchcraft a significant portion of the population are apparently robots, who upon discovering their true nature, will go on a horrible rampage. Before hand, however, they're basically indistinguishable from regular ponies (if one ignores their monotone voices, tendency to spark and glitch out). Somehow, Sweetie-Bot manages to be even more adorable than her canon counterpart.
  • Played with in the Dragon Ball Z Abridged version of "The World's Strongest". The original designs Dr. Wheelo had for the Bio Warriors were meant for them to be cute and cuddly with their purpose to aid the elderly. However, Kochin redesigns them to be more monstrous fighting robots designed to fight the elderly.
  • In Mega Man: Defender of the Human Race, Servbots and Metools are regarded as adorable even in-universe.
  • In Mega Man Reawakened, there's Servbots, Birdbots, and Metools.
  • Mark VII in the Captain America: The Winter Soldier fanfic ''re: I'm keeping him.'' is a little beeping box on wheels with the personality of a border collie. It functions like a robotic psychiatric service dog.

    Films — Animation 
  • WALL•E is probably the Trope Codifier. Pictured above, WALL•E is a trash-collecting robot who essentially has permanent Puppy-Dog Eyes, while EVE is a floating white egg-shaped robot with two eyes on a screen. The two protagonists of the movie are two robots who learn to love each other, so this was bound to happen.
  • The cast of 9. Go ahead, just try and say they aren't cute.
  • LaRousse City's block robots from Pokémon: Destiny Deoxys. Not so cute when they malfunction and start flooding the city.
  • Several of the appliances in The Brave Little Toaster, most notably Toaster, Blanky, and Lampy.
  • In Big Hero 6, Baymax is a huge inflatable robot designed to function as a nurse and probably the best example since WALL•E's protagonist bots. His appearance and behavior are intended to make him as gentle and non-threatening as possible, to the point of being completely incapable of hurting anyone without significant modifications. His exterior sits comfortably on the high point before the uncanny valley, being loosely humanoid with only some simple black eyes to hint at a face on his marshmallow head. His personality and voice are as kind and friendly as can be before turning annoying.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Star Wars: R2-D2 is the Trope Maker and the series' main Kid-Appeal Character, appearing in all nine of the main filmsnote . He is a small astromech droid whose vast array of tools get the heroes out of most situations. His high-pitched beeping, as well as his role of providing comic relief with his counterpart droid C-3PO make him especially cute.
    • BB-8 from the sequel trilogy is another example of this. He is even smaller than R2-D2, being essentially a small rolling ball with a balancing disk for a head. He serves a similar role to R2-D2.
    • The Battle Droids from the prequel trilogy and Star Wars: The Clone Wars could qualify as Ugly Cute. Sure, they fight for the Separatists, but are Affably Evil at worst and are extremely silly, with most of their antics being Played for Laughs.
  • *batteries not included. Two Cute Machines spawn three more.
  • In the film version of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (2005), they've given Marvin rounded proportions and an oversized head, making him deceptively cuddly-looking.
  • Iron Man: Dummy, the robot that assists Tony in creating his suit, is adorable. This is an interesting case in that the machine has almost no human qualities except for bolts that look like eyes, but it is made cute by its behavior.
  • Chappie, it's kinda hard to watch a robot that acts like a child, has moral values, and walks around in bling and not find it adorable.
  • Weebo, from Flubber, a small, hovering droid with a flip-up screen that shows pictures and video clips when she's snarking. After her death at the hands of Hoenicker's henchmen, her "daughter," Weebette, proves to be even cuter.
  • The 2010 Spike Jonze film Im Here revolves around Sheldon and Francesca, a pair of adorable humanoid robots with big eyes and no noses. Sheldon in particular was a shy, lonely robot until he met the lively and free-spirited Francesca.
  • JF Sebastian's "friends" in Blade Runner are children's toys dressed in little military uniforms and retrofitted into cheerful robot buddies.
  • Spy Kids 2: Island of Lost Dreams: R.A.L.P.H. (Robotic Arachnid Lithium Photo Helper), an adorable Literal Surveillance Bug employed by Carmen and Juni, and later squished by Gary (although the credits show him put back together, albeit using a crutch).

  • Ani-droids in Argo are designed to look like animals so they can be cute instead of threatening to humans who would otherwise be uncomfortable with them.
  • Even in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Trilogy, Marvin's so adorably tragic you can't help but want to give him a hug.
  • The "Christmas Bush" in Robert L. Forward and family's Rocheworld is made up of tiny modules that talk to each other with color-coded lights, making it look like, well, a bush decorated for christmas. Various AI probes are adorably enthusiastic about their jobs as well.

    Live-Action TV 

  • The robots of Steam Powered Giraffe are quite the cuties, what with Rabbit's love of puns, The Spine's attempts to act as the straight man, and Hatchworth's general cluelessness.

  • The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (1978): The Sirius Cybernetics Corporation (who according to the Guide in an edition flung into the future was "a bunch of mindless jerks who were the first against the wall when the Revolution came") had developed robots with "people personality" traits and defined a robot as "your plastic pal who's fun to be with." Marvin, a Sirius Cybernetics prototype, subverts this as he loathes his lot in life.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Most Myr in Magic: The Gathering. Alloy Myr, Perilous Myr and Brass Squire in particular.
  • Arbiter inevitables in Pathfinder. Little ball-shaped semi-robotic Lawful Neutral outsiders that can serve as familiars.
    • Also from Pathfinder, the Clockwork Spy. Why anyone would WANT them to explode, we have no idea.
  • Some of the illustrations of modrons in Planescape are ridiculously cute, particularly the monodrone flipbook hidden in the corner of one. (Of course, modrons who evolve into the higher levels of the hierarchy aren't cute at all.)

  • Zane, P.I.X.A.L.note , and many other little 'bots in Ninjago.
  • Pretty much every toy robot made for small children.
  • The Busou Shinki and their successors, the Frame Arms Girls and Megami Device Mecha Musume, are all small, close-to-1/12 scale robot girls, and all of them are wonderfully endearing. One of the Shinki designers, BLADE, went on to work for Mega House and created the Desktop Army, a series of even tinier and more adorable mecha musume.

    Video Games 
  • Ascent Crash Landing: Bluu's Robot Buddy, Blip, looks like this.
  • Beacon, a sentient desk lamp and the protagonist of Beacon of Hope is one of these.
  • The tituliar robots from the Bomberman series including the default White Bomber who can also be Badass Adorable given that they naturally weaponize and produce bombs.
  • Gizmo has you playing a robot that looks like this.
  • Dog from Half-Life 2. Hulking great brute, but cute in his behaviour. He provides much of the game's comedic relief.
    • Dog's head comes from the Combine's scanner robots, who are also somewhat cute looking. Just don't let one take your picture, unless you'd like a healthy serving of Civil Protection.
  • The eponymous tanks from Metal Slug. They have intricate mechanical details that are meticulously animated, but their general body language and movements are given a certain flair of cuteness - their entire body rocks back with the recoil of their snub-nosed cannon firing, their turrets droop to the side when they take damage (and their coaxial machine gun goes flying cartoonishly when they've taken enough damage), their treads flex and curl inwards when they jump, and they drop forward like a cat about to pounce when they crouch.
  • Phoning Home stars two adorable robots named ION (the Player Character) and ANI. ION looks like WALL•E, and ANI is a ball with big eyes and arms.
  • Pokémon have a wide array of these for the players to use, although some of them are based on inanimate objects and other myths instead of outright robots. Specific examples include (and not limited to) Magnemite, Aron, Beldum, Klink and Klefki.
  • Portal's robotic gun turrets, as well as GLaDOS' curiosity core.
    • From Portal 2, we get the personality cores such as Wheatley, and Atlas and P-body from the new co-op mode (adapted from a core and turret, respectively). Atlas and P-Body may not be as small and adorable as the others, but make up for it with their mannerisms.
      • The 'different' turret at the beginning of the game fits this trope especially well.
      • So do the remarkably pathetic frankenturrets: they're basically a pair of turrets hastily fused to a cube. They can't stand or talk but crawl along feebly with their two wonky forelimbs, and they'll shiver and retreat into their cube/shell when you pick them up. These things basically behave like scared hermit crabs, and are strangely, sadly adorable for it.
    • The Weighted Companion Cube deserves a mention here, even though it's just that.
  • Robo in Chrono Trigger, although mostly because of his personality.
  • Clank from Ratchet & Clank.
  • The small, stage one turret gun in Team Fortress 2 (if you happen to be the engineer who built it). It's about waist high, rounded and pleasantly industrial in construction, team-colored, and makes the most adorable high-pitched beeps.
    • The Gunslinger unlockable weapon replaces the normal upgradeable sentry with an even smaller Mini Sentry- a tinier level 1 sentry that's no more than knee high, has a flashing hazard light taped to the top, and checkerboard paint on its drum magazine. Its beeps are even higher pitched, and its machinegun proportionally smaller and faster-firing. Everything about it is just adorable, which is impressive for a completely non-humanoid tripod gun without any sort of voice.
  • The depressed/scared looking, little RC robot in Sheep, Dog 'n' Wolf.
  • Metal Gear Solid 4 features the Metal Gear Mk. II (eventually replaced by the similar Mk. III), a ridiculously cute miniature version of the titular battle tank that serves as Snake's Robot Buddy, piloted by Otacon. It's also directly based on the Metal Gear Mk. II from ''Snatcher, which looked exactly like it, and served a similar role to that game's protagonist, Gillian Seed.
  • Nintendo's Robotic Operating Buddy is a charming little unit, even if his actual games leave something to be desired, and he frequently cameos in more modern game productions.
  • The Mecha Grunty from .hack//G.U. games.
  • Mega Man and especially Roll, though their cuteness probably fits them into just plain Moe. Some of the enemies as well, such as the Mets.
    • Most of the robot masters qualify to an extent, especially the shorter ones (such as Ice Man and Heat Man).
  • The Badass Adorable bomb-chucking Bomberman, what with his cute little computer monitor face that makes an "(n n)" expression when he's happy.
  • C21 and its sequel Cosmic Break are filled with examples. Running the full spectrum from this trope up to Ridiculously Human Robots.
  • TimeSplitters Future Perfect has the Sweet Suck PPT Cleaning Robot in the "Breaking and Entering" level (skip to 4:30). Its a chatty little bastard too! Just imagine it saying this in a C3-PO-esque voice ~ "I am the Sweet Suck PPT cleaning robot, I am ideal for both office and domestic use, no job is too small. I love filth, and my full range of accessories ensure no crevice is left untouched. I bring a smile to any owner's lips". It scoots across the floor with a little street sweeping brush on its fanny!
  • The Gearmos from Super Mario Galaxy and Super Mario Galaxy 2. They're squat little robots with a giant gear above their head, hence their name.
  • Chibi-Robos are appropriately-named tiny Robot Maids that help people and Living Toys with their problems to earn Happy Points. The Robot Buddies they come with usually count as well.
  • The player character in Drol.
  • The "Cheoptronic" door-opening robot from The Riddle Of The Sphinx is cute, if only because it's dinky-little and so prone to getting hung up on rough surfaces that it's kinda pathetic.
  • The Claptrap robots in Borderlands; sure some may find them rather annoying due to them talking too much but some others find them cute, especially with their humorous voice.
  • Though he technically isn't a machine, the eponymous protagonist of Knack is still this in his default (small) form.
  • The titular robot from the game Light-Bot. He's even more cute in the (as of writing in alpha) remake.
  • The AR Bots in the pre-loaded PS4 augmented reality game, The PlayRoom. They seem inspired by EVE, mentioned above.
  • The funky, cross-eyed title character B.O.B..
  • Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies has two robot characters in the fifth case, Ponco and Clonco. Both are short, eager to please, happy to make friends, and get upset if they can't help you. The Judge finds Ponco positively adorable and wants to adopt her as a grandchild. Clonco gets slightly less cute when Aura takes him over. Their personalities were designed by their creator, Metis, who thought that when astronauts go to space, the robots will go with them, and having them as emotional companions will help the astronauts psychologically.
  • Doki-Doki Universe features a number of cute robots, though the most obvious is the main character QT3.
  • Protoss Probes from StarCraft, like Heroes of the Storm's Probius, can be quite cute.
  • In BioShock, those little helicopter droids that fly around making farty noises as they go by are kinda smile-inducing when they aren't shooting you.
  • In Virtue's Last Reward, after The Reveal, Luna counts as this.
  • Verrocchio from Nanami no Oshiete English DS series.
  • Many of Dr. Eggman's earliest robots had whimsical, animal-themed designs. Over the years, the designs got gradually less cutesy and more threatening before settling on a mix of both as of Sonic Unleashed.
    • Sonic Lost World brought back several robots from the classic games and gave them more cartoony designs resembling their original concept arts. Even Egg Pawns, who were already cute to begin with, recieved a redesign!
    • Unrelated to Eggman, we have Q-N-C from Sonic Boom, despite the possible gonk elements of its design by Lyric.
  • Chronotron from the Web Game of the same name.
  • Both Codsworth and Curie from Fallout 4 are the three-armed, three-eyed Mister Handy utility robots, and they are possible companions for the player. They're also both dorky in character, with Codsworth being "loyal British butler" adorable and Curie being "cute French scientist" adorable. Even better, the two robots can meet and interact, and they're both adorably polite and friendly to each other. Plus, with the way Codsworth's "eyes" widen when he sees Curie it's implied he has something of a crush on her.
  • Most ROMs in Read Only Memories are this, which makes sense given they are mainly consumer products.
  • The Lonesome Road DLC for Fallout: New Vegas has ED-E. Unlike its counterpart in the main game, this eyebot has a personality. It communicates with electronic beeps that the Courier is somehow able to understand, it displays emotions like happiness, sadness and fear simply by how it shakes, and it has a taste for old world TV shows.
  • While many of the robots in Soma can be utterly terrifying, the little mini-sub bot that you rescue early on in the game is definitely this. You quickly fall in love with its adorable little beeps and clicks, and it helps you on numerous occasions.
  • Scavenger 'bots from Dead Space 3 are turtlish little robots that scamper around making beepy noises while looking for scrap to bring you. If you're lucky, you can see them zipping into the nearest Bench. If really lucky, you won't be fighting for your life when it happens.
  • World of Tanks. Yes even Tanks can be cute.
    • The Panzerspahwagen II Luchs features stubby proportions and incredible agility that earn the nicknames Puppy Tank and Murderkitten. And it's 30mm autocannon has good enough penetration to be a terror if gets a free run on the enemies' flank. The M24 Chaffee has similar cute credentials but does not contest the nickname.
    • The hulking T29 American heavy tank boasts basically impenetrable frontal turret armour, a powerful gun and decent mobility that make it a potent, versatile threat. And two little 'ears' (coincidence rangefinders) on the side of the large turret that earn it some cute credentials for many fans.
    • The AMX 40 is a tier 4 light tank with armour that would be good on a tier 5 heavy and bears a resemblance to a rubber duck, which is it's nickname.
  • Overwatch has Snowball, Mei's weather modification drone and Robot Buddy. There's also the Omnic Orisa, given her very emotive eyes and dorky yet cute personality.
  • In Rodina, you eventually get the ability to turn all those automaton parts you collect into little bug-eyed robots that follow you eagerly into your ship, where they wander around like curious kittens, making beeping noises akin to R2-D2 every now and then. Makes you wonder why people of the future hold such fanatical contempt towards robots.
  • The Clockwork Tower in Shovel Knight is populated by tiny wound-up rat robots whose attempts at attacking Shovel Knight end with them tripping and short-circuiting before getting up again. Terrifyingly, the epilogue of Specter of Torment shows these bots are actually cyborgs made from actual rats.
  • Tyler: Model 005 has you playing as a tiny robot that looks like this.
  • In Void Bastards, the PuppyBots and KittyBots manufactured by the Otori Corporation and sold as robot pets. And because Void Bastards takes place in a Crapsack World, the bots are of course constantly listening in and reporting back to Otori.
  • Neopets: Every single Robot Neopet has a robot skin, and most of them fit this trope.
  • Warframe has Moas, robot proxy used by the Corpus, which are essentially robotic chickens with lasers. They even make chicken noises. People we're so enamoured by them that DE even made customizable companions out of them, equipped with their own variants in body types, powers, weapons and emotes.
  • Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity features the Diminutive Guardian, a small egg-shaped Guardian that takes the entire book from R2-D2 and BB-8. It even makes whistling sounds that sound akin to their trademark beep language with similar pipes across its body to help it play Zelda's Lullaby.
  • Subnautica: Below Zero features the Spy Penglings, which are basically their flesh-and-blood counterparts made into a remote-control scouting robot that can easily be rebranded as a toy.
  • Train Your Minibot: You play as a tiny robot with big blue eyes.
  • Big Robot Bil from The Neverhood
  • Live A Live has Cube, the protagonist of the Distant Future chapter who is a newly-created droid who looks like a large baseball on roller skates with slots for a face who communicates via beeping. He's treated as a Robot Buddy by all those aboard the spaceship save for the resident gruff military man (who is a survivor of a Robot War and even he ends up coming around) and his chapter is all about proving how a mechanical being such as him is capable of displaying the best traits of humanity.
  • Twin Robots: The robots in question are a pair of little square-headed smiling robots who need to escape being scrapped.
  • Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order has Cal's droid buddy, BD-1, being absolutely adorable with his Wall-E like big eyes and diminutive legs it walks around with.

    Visual Novels 
  • In Murder by Numbers (2020), SCOUT is an adorable robot who loves books and movies, and is especially cute when happy or excited. His Assault Mode form, not so much.

    Web Animation 


    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • Ro-Bear Berbils from ThunderCats (1985) and ThunderCats (2011) are rainbow-hued robotic teddy-bears who love to build and repair things.
  • Depending on the design, Toonami's mascot TOM. Even with his more detailed designs, he has a dorky personality to make him always seem cute.

    Real Life 
  • The Cessna A-37 Dragonfly is a jet trainer modified into a Badass Adorable baby A-10 Warthog.
  • Tweenbots, little smiling cardboard robots that can only roll in a straight line, with a flag with its destination written on it. They were created for a social experiment to see whether or not people in busy cities would help the little robots get to their destination. They do.
  • Keepon, the dancing robot.
  • Boxie is a cardboard robot built at MIT. Boxie uses its cute appearance and infantile voice to get people to talk about themselves and take it places. The footage it recorded was made into a short film.
  • PaPeRo functions as the user's companion. Its cuteness is important as it helps ease the user.
  • Pepper, a robot from French company Aldebaran Robotics and Japanese company SoftBank.
  • NAO, a robot from the aforementioned companies.
  • MEDi, a robot from the University of Calgary, not only looks cute, but is also meant to soothe and interact with children getting vaccines. Also, tai chi.
  • Say hello to T8 the 3D-printed Octoped robot. It's a Cyber Cyclops Giant Spider which is only too happy to dance for you. Even some of those who believe Spiders Are Scary have said that they don't feel threatened by T8, possibly because its very first action after walking into view is eagerly shimmying its abdomen like a dog its wagging its tail.
  • The Roomba. Dutiful little plastic oreo with a penchant for getting trapped and frequently thought of by owners as something of a pet.
  • In some stores, you will find a little robot you can buy known as Vector. He can tell the weather, play blackjack, and even take picture. Not only that, but his design is very cute.
  • Robi, an adorable little multipurpose robot from Japan. He's basically a humanoid SmartPhone who takes voice commands and sounds vaguely like Pikachu.
  • Japan is at it again with the Int-Ball, a small, floating sphere that helps document the astronauts' activities. It also looks like a simple doodle of a smiley face and quietly moves about the ISS, taking pictures of everything.
  • Paro is a therapeutic robot based on a baby harp seal. Hard to get cuter than that.
  • Attempted with Marty, a robot deployed to several American grocery store chains to monitor floors for spills and tripping hazards. Unfortunately, Marty is just as likely to provoke annoyance.
  • The Starr Bumble Bees were a pair of single-seater planes created just to get the title of world's smallest airplane. They literally looked like great big preschool toys.
  • The Kiwibot is a little lunchbox on wheels that is designed to carry out food deliveries in Californian cities as well as certain college campuses. They have adorably beady and expressive eyes on a little screen.