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In video games, a bot is a computer-controlled player with some degree of artificial intelligence (AI). In SRB2, bots can only appear in Single Player, and only one bot can be present at a time – most notably, selecting the "Sonic & Tails" option in the character select screen will create a Tails bot who will follow Sonic around the game as he progresses through it. Custom character select entries can be similarly configured to allow a bot of any character to follow another.
By default, bots in SRB2 have very limited intelligence and ability in general: They will jump only when the player is on a floor too high to step up to, and charge a spindash only when the player is charging a spindash as well, but cannot use any double-jump character abilities such as Sonic's thok or Tails' flying. When a bot collects a ring, these will add to the player's own ring total. Bots themselves cannot die except through hazards that would lead to instantaneous death (such as crushers, death pits or drowning). Bots also cannot break monitors, nor trigger various level effects such as linedef executors.
If the bot is too far away from the player in a level, the bot will simply respawn to locate itself by the player again, dropping from the sky above the player (or flying down if the character would normally be able to fly, such as with Tails).
A special bonus for bots in Single Player is that they can be controlled by Player 2 controls – as soon as any of these are touched, the bot will stop using its AI and can be controlled by Player 2 controls as with two-player mode. Note that Player 2 here automatically uses analog controls and shares Player 1's camera. The bot will start using its AI again only after respawning, either by moving too far away from the player, being killed by a hazard or after a map has been loaded.
Prior to their inclusion in SRB2 v2.1, bots were well-known as a feature found in source code modifications such as SRB2JTE and SRB2CB. These bots differ in intelligence to those found in SRB2 itself, and are available in multiplayer gametypes such as Coop and Match.