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A brain implant that stimulates the brain's pleasure centers. While it dramatically improves a user's mood, the blanket of happiness makes it hard to concentrate on anything real. Joywires are illegal on many worlds, and are known for destroying whole cultures.

Base Stats

Medical ItemsBody Parts
Tech Level
Market Value
220 Silver [Note]
0.2 kg


Crafted At
Machining table
Required Research
Brain wiringTechprint
Skill Required
Crafting 5
Work To Make
15,000 ticks (4.17 mins)
Resources to make
Steel 20 + Component 4

The joywire is a brain implant that grants a permanent but substantial mood boost in return for a permanent but substantial consciousness penalty. After implantation, it cannot be removed.


In the base game, the joywires cannot be crafted. Instead they can only be obtained via trade or found in ancient shrines.

With the Royalty DLC, joywires can be crafted at a Machining table once the Brain wiring research project has been completed. They require Steel 20 Steel, Component 4 Components, 15,000 ticks (4.17 mins) of work, and a Crafting skill of 5.


The joywire provides a permanent +30 Joywire mood buff at the cost of a −20% Consciousness malus. Note that this malus is subtractive, not multiplicative. This consciousness penalty in turn negatively affects almost every task a pawn can perform, as it directly affects the Eating, Manipulation, Moving, Talking capacities, and these in turn affect most stats. See those pages for details.


Installing the part requires 2,500 ticks (41.67 secs) of work, 2x medicine of Herbal quality or better, and a Medical skill of 5.

It cannot be removed traditionally once installed. For non-traditional methods, see the Analysis section.

If the operation fails, the part is always destroyed.

Installing a joywire onto a guest is not considered a harmful operation.


Joywires are most useful when a pawn's productivity simply does not matter. For example, a lategame colony can use a joywire and psychic harmonizerContent added by the Royalty DLC to spread a mood buff to other colonists. This works best if the colonist is already disabled, and even better if comatose - see the Psychic harmonizer page for details. A joywire can also be installed into Royal quest guestsContent added by the Royalty DLC without penalty. Conceited nobles will not do work, and the implant keeps them happy even if you neglect some of their royal needs.

Otherwise, implanting a joywire on a colonist is generally a bad idea. The debuff is hefty; even cleaning, hauling, and walking are performed −20% slower. In combat, joywires reduce accuracy and increases the chance to die from consciousness loss. While the +30 mood buff is substantial, increasing mood can be done with many other ways, such as a social drug policy, fine or lavish meals, and beautiful rooms. Joywires could be useful for less useful colonists with Depressive or other traits that will cause mental breaks. But, if the other means of mood management aren't sufficient, it may be wiser to just abandon them.

Luciferium can offset the stat penalty, bringing Consciousness to 95%. While it's still −20% Consciousness compared to an ordinary luciferium addict, note that certain stats (like Moving) only scale up to 100% Consciousness. Therefore, the penalty is somewhat smaller compared to a non-drugged pawn gaining a joywire. Of course, you should have some means of obtaining luciferium, like a reliable Outlander trade faction. A neural superchargerContent added by the Ideology DLC is analogous as a stat increase, though doesn't have the same costs as luciferium.


While you cannot traditionally remove the joywire, it is possible to remove it indirectly by destroying the head of the implanted pawn and then resurrecting the pawn using a resurrector mech serum.

This is not without issues however. First, consistently destroying the head can be difficult. With the Ideology DLC, extracting the skull from a dead pawn will do this reliably and safely, but without it, the best way is allow colonists or animals to eat sections of the corpse, at the risk of consuming the entire body and permanently losing the pawn. Furthermore, no matter how successful the head removal, there the risks normally associated with resurrection remain, including dementia, blindness, and resurrection psychosis.


The implant cannot be removed in the game, but according to the Joywire Addict and Addiction Counsel backstories and the fact the backstories appear on pawns without a joywire installed, this is not the case on other, probably more advanced, worlds.

Version history[edit]