Character Types

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Character Types Colonists Animals Mechanoids Prisoners Raiders Visitors

Throughout your play of Rimworld you will come across several different types of characters. Some of these characters will be friendly such as drifters who just wander through your colony and other hostile, such as the mechanoids, looking to destroy you.


For the skill of the same name, see Skills.
For a complete search, see List of animals.

Wild animals occasionally spawn on the map according to the biome and from random events. These wild animals and tamed animals will wander and graze on vegetation, including player-grown plants, regardless of type. Growing food outdoors can sometimes attract animals to your base perimeter. Animals are an important source of food by the meat they provide once hunted and butchered.

Raiders will target tamed animals as often as colonists.

Animal trainers receive 90 XP per training or taming attempt. When animals nuzzle a colonist, it counts as a social interaction and is logged in the social tab of both the colonist and animal.


Colonists are the living inhabitants of each RimWorld colony. Each colonist has specific skills, positive and negative traits, and a character backstory. In general, every human is a colonist except for raiders/travelers/prisoners. The colonists come in various outfits based on their background, which can be seen by looking at the 'Character' tab in game.


Mechanoids are deadly autonomously intelligent robots, most commonly encountered as hostiles in raids, ancient shrines and the ancient ship crash event.


Prisoners are people, usually raiders, hostile tribals, or your own colonists undergoing a mental break, who have been taken captive. They are unable to leave their prison barracks and can only use facilities (such as a food dispenser or shelf) on their own if they are placed inside the prison barracks.

Colonists generally will not take food from prisoners' cells. However, colonists experiencing a "food binge" mental break may steal food from anywhere they can reach, including forbidden areas.

Animals that are allowed to venture into prison cells will occasionally eat food left for prisoners.


Raiders are enemies who attack in groups when the storyteller's threat cycle is active (or any time, for Randy Random). The group size and strength of a raiding party is determined by 'points', which will be explained in-depth further down this article.


Occasionally an event is triggered that spawns a group visitors from a friendly faction at the edge of the map that comes and mills about the colony. Sometimes one member of the group has items to trade, indicated by a question mark over the pawn. To initiate trade, select a colonist and right-click the trader.
A visiting group's arrival could prove advantageous if the colony is assaulted by a mutual enemy while they are present. See Events - Visitors.

When leaving, visitors will carry away wounded members of their faction.

Version history

As of Alpha 14 (July 15th, 2016), traders, visitors, raiders, kidnappers, animals, etc. will now escape if surrounded by walls with no way out.

As of Alpha 16 (December 20th, 2016), rescued people (especially space refugees etc.) should sometimes join the colony. If the environment isn't survivable (e.g. bad temperature, toxic fallout) they should always join the colony.