How does Alice work?- Detroit: Become Human

Right off the bat, there will be spoilers for Detroit: Become Human, more specifically Kara’s story. If you haven’t played it, go ahead and do that first! It’s a very good game, and that’s saying something because I am picky about games.

Alice is a character in Detroit: Become Human that is a major part of Kara’s story. She is a little girl that Kara looks after. At the start of Kara’s story, you learn that Alice was the one to give Kara her name and that one of Kara’s jobs is to look after Alice. After finding out (and witnessing) Alice was being abused by her father, Kara and Alice leave the house (or die trying). From then on, Kara’s completely responsible for keeping Alice safe. It seems like her main wish is to give the little girl the life that she deserves.

This post will focus on Alice. More specifically, it will focus on whether or not Alice is deviant and if so, when does she become deviant. The idea came about after reading in the game that her model is programmed differently to other androids. So, let’s get into it!

So, in Detroit: Become Human, all three main characters (Kara, Markus and Connor) have the potential to become deviant. Throughout the game, the characters also meet other deviants who help them along the way. The thing that tends to give deviants away is the expression of free will or emotion.

As I mentioned before, Alice is a huge part of Kara’s story. How you play the game differs but in general, the aim is to get Kara and Alice past the Canadian border so that they have a chance to live freely. Kara becomes deviant while protecting Alice from Todd, her father. The majority of Kara’s story is about protecting Alice, doing stuff for Alice, making sure Alice is okay. Near the end of the game, when Kara and Alice (and Luther, if he is still alive and with them) get to Jericho and after Kara talks to Markus, she walks downstairs to find Alice… only, it’s not Alice. It’s an android who looks exactly like Alice. So, we discover that Alice has actually been an android this whole time. Of course, this does not stop Kara from loving her and it just means that she gets to be a little girl forever so no more worrying about the effect all the bad stuff will have on her when she becomes an adult.

But I couldn’t help but wonder if Alice was deviant. She expresses human emotion such as fear and love. She clearly has a strong moral compass, as shown when Kara has a chance to steal the clothes from the washing machine. She acts human throughout the game. She is so different from the other deviants that are seen throughout the game. She just wants to live life like a normal girl, which is something that is shown often with deviants throughout the game.

The main thing keeping me from saying outright that Alice is deviant is that she is a child, and children are meant to be loving and innocent. In my mind, there is a chance that Alice was actually programmed differently to adult androids like Kara, Markus and Connor. She was programmed to have emotion and to be loyal and child-like. She was programmed to have all the qualities that adults tend to want in children; otherwise, they wouldn’t sell. We know that YK-500 models (Alice’s model) were a commercial success when it launched in 2033, and it has been credited by sociologists for the decline of birth rates. In the same section, we can find out that these models are programmed to act child-like, with needs and can replicate illnesses that children commonly go through. So, does that mean that YK-500 models cannot become deviant? As technically they can already feel human emotion, replicate illness etc. They can basically do everything a human can because that is how they were programmed.

But in my opinion, whether or not Alice is deviant comes down to one thing: loyalty. Technically speaking, she is an android owned by Todd, there to replicate a child (to replace his daughter). Alice should therefore act as such, and be loyal to Todd. The main issue here is that, quite frankly, she is not. If Alice was loyal to Todd, she would not have left. Even when her life is in danger (which it is, as shown in the ending where Todd kills her if they do not get away), she would stay there. That is what she was programmed to do. Or, was it? Because she is programmed to replicate emotions, such as fear. But would a non-deviant android fear for her life? Or the life of another android, as shown with Kara? No. In my opinion, at least, an android would not care about their own life or the life of another android unless it was deviant, as shown with Connor when he has the choice of whether or not to shoot Chloe. Therefore, I believe that there is enough evidence present to state that Alice is deviant. The main question is, when did she become deviant and, more importantly, why?

It is important to mention that there could be many points throughout the game where Alice could deviate, primarily in Stormy Night, as her life is in danger. But before looking at that, we need to look at what we know about androids and deviants. We learn quite a lot about this subject throughout the game, especially through Connor’s storyline. Connor’s storyline is the first few times we actually get to see deviants, and it is established early on that androids often become deviants due to emotional shock. This is seen with Carlos Ortiz’s android, who went deviant after two years of abuse, as he felt like Carlos was going to kill him. It is established that the android’s owner didn’t even give him a name as he felt like his android was not alive, which indicates that the android also went through a lot of emotional abuse, as well as physical (such as the cigarette burns). Now, the main thing that I want to point out with Carlos Ortiz’s android is that he stayed in the house because he didn’t have anywhere else to go. He tells Connor that it was the first time that he didn’t have anyone to tell him what to do. This is what, in my opinion, links to Alice the most.

I believe that Alice went deviant when Todd broke Kara, either the time that puts her in the store at the start of the game or the time before that. My theory is that they tried to leave like they successfully did in Stormy Night but Todd broke Kara out of anger, which eventually calmed him down. He then took Kara to the shop to get fixed. In the meantime, Alice did not have anywhere to go. She acted normally, which was not a huge deal because of how she was programmed while waiting for Kara to get back. Upon realising that Kara’s memory had to be reset, she was upset, likely thinking that Kara would not be able to leave with her, therefore she would not be able to leave. Kara is much more to Alice than a mother figure. Kara was her way out of the abusive household she was bought into. All Alice wanted was a normal life, and if she was able to get out of Todd’s house, that may be possible. Alice put a lot of trust and faith into Kara, therefore seeing her get destroyed (likely knowing that Todd could easily do the same thing to her, or that he could have already done it and she wouldn’t know as she would have had to have her memory wiped too) would have likely have been enough of an emotional shock to make her deviate. Whether that be because of the heartbreak of losing Kara or fear for her life.

And that, gamers, is my theory as to whether or not Alice is deviant in Detroit: Become Human. Leave your thoughts in the comments (I love this game so it’s fine if it’s not just about this!), and don’t forget to like and follow this blog for more gaming content! If you want, drop some suggestions in the comments. See you next time!

Published by eleanorreeswriting

Hi, I am an autistic gamer in my 20's who loves to share my experiences and thoughts about games, characters and everything about gaming.

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