According to the Blade Runner's press kit, replicants were "A genetically engineered creature composed entirely of organic substance."

If they're not robots, why are they not capable of emotions (obviously shown in the idea of the Voight Kampff test)? Did they make them without emotions on purpose, and if so why, or is there a reason a "genetically engineered creature" can't have emotions?

  • 6
    Why would you need to include emotions for something that's essentially an ephemeral robot worker?
    – Paulie_D
    Sep 30, 2019 at 10:43
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    Um, what makes you think replicants don’t have emotions? Clearly Roy Batty does. Pris and Zora seem to feel fear. And Leon has an attachment to his photos, as well as some kind of feeling about Zora’s death. And of course Rachael has emotions. Oct 1, 2019 at 2:35

1 Answer 1


Replicants certainly do have emotions - Roy Batty exhibits anger and ultimately sadness; several of them exhibit fear at being discovered and retired.

However, they are relatively underdeveloped, emotionally speaking. Replicants are physically matured and "born" at full adult growth - they don't go through a childhood to socially and emotionally mature like regular humans. The VK test is not aimed at detecting a lack of emotion - it is designed to detect inappropriate response to emotionally stimulating scenarios.

It seems that this emotionally stunting is known to be a problem - one of the reasons for the programmed short life-spans of the Nexus-6 models is because they become more "emotionally erratic" - Roy, Pris, Leon, and Zora are all close to the end of their life.

Tyrell Corporation were working on improving this - by programming in childhood memories - thereby providing some emotional maturity to the fresh new replicant.

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