Androids are machines fitted with an Artificial Intelligence Core in order to give them independent thoughts and personalities. Though frame design differs, Androids are typically human in appearance with features designed to help distinguish them as machines, the most prominent of which is the pair of data horns that extend from each side of their head.
An Assault Android is a Droid fitted with a special Assault frame, granting them armor, durability and in some cases built in weapons. All Androids in the game are fitted with a Light Assault frame, which offers them a balance of mobility and defense not found in other, heavier frames. While some had the frame installed for dedicated combat purposes (eg. Shiitake, Liquorice, Cactus), others wear it to afford themselves superior flexibility and protection while they work in the industrial areas of the Genki Star. (eg. Holly, Lemon) Peanut is an oddity among the crew in that she wears one only as a replacement for her own frame (Satyr) and just has not found the time to go back to her original frame. 
Combat Mode is a setting inside of the Assault Frame that allows Androids to be combat effective, boosting their reflexes and abilities while also draining their battery to the point that they constantly need to recharge it.
"Combat Mode increases perception, reflexes and strength but most importantly maintains a damage dispersing field. Without it, plasma bullets would punch holes through them and lasers would saw them in half."
List of all playable androids
|Cactus||Unlocked by default|
|Holly||Unlocked by default|
|Lemon||Unlocked by default|
|Coral||Unlocked by default|
Comparing weapon DPS between the androids
Obviously damage and DPS are not the entire picture (especially for secondary weapons), but it's still interesting to examine.
Based on these approximate empirical findings. Follow the link to see how the measurements were taken.
Player ranking statistics
Some analysis on the appearances of each Android in the Top 10 score rankings, as of January 2017.
Based on these findings:
- Cactus does really well in bosses, but extremely poorly in regular levels. Embryo is her strongest stage.
- Holly does okay in regular levels, but extremely poorly in bosses. Heat is her strongest stage.
- Lemon is very poorly represented overall, only appearing in Vespula and Assembly.
- Coral is extremely well represented across levels and bosses. Her strongest level is Capacitor, which she utterly dominates.
- Starch is decently represented in bosses, and very well represented in levels. Her strongest level is Convection.
- Aubergine sees modest representation in levels, and poor representation in bosses. Her strongest level is Control.
- Shiitake has extremely poor representation in bosses, but her dominance in levels is so strong that she's most represented overall. Her strongest levels are Checkpoint and Collider, which she utterly dominates.
- Peanut is decently represented for bosses, but poorly in levels. Her strongest level is Vespula.
- Liquorice is well-represented for bosses, but poorly in levels. Her strongest level is Venom.
Note that there are plenty of holes in this analysis:
- This is only taking the top 10 from each level, top 100 would be better. Since Steam's leaderboard API doesn't include android selection, all data has to be collected manually from the in-game leaderboard.
- This doesn't weight a #1 rank more than a #10 rank.
- This is a measure of android popularity, not just android effectiveness. If an android is more popular it's going to have more players, more attempts, and hence more shots at a top score.
- This doesn't (and indeed, can't) account for top players having a slightly worse score with a different android than their best.
|Androids Assemble||Play as 8 Androids||Requires beating Venom in order to unlock Peanut. From there, just play an entire level once for every android once (excluding Liquorice), and you have the achievement.|
- "Legally they're considered somewhere between animals and luxury goods - there's laws against causing an Android unnecessary pain and suffering, but destroying one is considered property damage. Typically every Android is owned - either outright (like Shiitake, Aubergine and Starch) or by the facility that built them, who grant them semi-autonomy in exchange for a portion of wages earned. Even when Androids end up owning deeds to themselves, they're still expected to have a sponsor."
- "The forerunner to the modern Android design (the Angelica line) occurred when an Earth based Core production company collaborated with a renowned doll maker to create a humanoid frame of high build quality and aesthetic design. Not only were they commercially successful and instrumental to mainstream acceptance of Androids, they established many of the conventions. There are male (and fully androgynous) Androids, but they are uncommon, and public perception is Androids are female unless stated otherwise."
- "Android Cores can be Terran, Martian or Jovian and each has associations and stereotypes, such as Lunar Cores being high grade / authentic or Phobos Cores being cheap and reliable. Europa's Cores (and by extension, Satyr Androids) seem mysterious because of Jupiter region's isolation, with rumours that their Core manufacturing process diverged or that Androids personalities are affected by deep space. People on Earth and Mars rarely meet them and coupled with the obvious physical differences, there can be trepidation when people (or other Androids) spot the horns."
- "Androids generally don't need fluids unless they're having trouble digesting. (like a cat eating grass). Some have picked it as a habit though, including Androids that drink coffee and alcohol and experience the effects, but it's assumed they're mimicking humans since there's no biological explanation."