A type of automated, self-replicating cybernetic warship.
Autowars may be of turingrade, superturing or hyperturing toposophy, and have been created by a number of different empires (including Metasoft, the MPA, and others) many times during history (e.g. the Version War, the Successor Wars, the Sagittarius Frontier Wars). Highly destructive, intelligent, adaptable, and capable of extended independent operations, autowars can remain a danger to nearby inhabited systems for centuries, millennia, or even indefinitely. It is estimated that almost 2% of the hinteregions and solward Outer Volumes - an area equivalent to a major archailect empire - have been rendered hazardous to a greater or lesser extent by entrenched autowar and biowar populations, especially along the Cygnus and Sagittarius arcs, with smaller populations found throughout much of the Perseus rift and rimward of the Disarchy. On some occasions, autowars have made ascension and breached one or more singularity barriers (one of the better known examples being the Mother of Machines). Sometimes known simply as War Machine. See also biowar.
Text by Bill White; modified by M. Alan Kazlev
Initially published on 03 November 2001.