GOATS in the Shell is a 2D-animated Norb Network television program revolving around a group of farm animals on the Verandi Empire planet of Atlantica that are actually Norb secret agents. They have advanced Gyroscopic Organic Algorithmic Tactical Systems - GOATS - embedded in their brains to allow for extremely high levels of thought processing, and pilot humongous mechanical robot war frames referred to as shells. They combat the forces of evil in order to keep the planet safe, while still being back on the farm in time.
GOATS in the Shell has a large cast, with over a dozen primary characters and many more secondary ones. The show deals with two groups of characters that the GOATS encounter - those who they interact with on the farm, and those who they interact with in their role as protectors of Atlantica.
- Haruka Keene: A Verandi girl in her early twenties, she wanted to be a computer engineer, but had to stay home to help her parents run the farm. She adopted the GOATS after a strange man in a truck gave them to her for free.
- Makken Keene: Haruka's father, he is an honest man who works hard to keep the farm running, but is so focused on providing for his family that he tends to ignore them.
- Fiora Keene: Haruka's mother and Makken's wife, she ran a successful ice creamery before it was destroyed by Kaladian terrorists at some point before the series. She is the first human to learn about the GOATS secret when she is kicked by a mule and Rosemary breaks her cover to bring her back to the base to save her.
- Grandpa "Gramps" Stanley: Haruka's grandfather, and Fiora's father. He is convinced that there is something abnormal about the GOATS, but nobody believes him. He is constantly coming up with schemes to catch the GOATS acting out of character, leading to comedic situations.
- Cinnamon (Construct Intended for Nocturnal Nullification, Accurate Mathematics and Online Negotiation): The leader of the GOATS, Cinnamon is a goat who pilots the lead shell. She is Haruka's favorite pet, and the first GOAT to join the farm.
- Bahamat (Biomechanical Artificial Helper Assembled for Repair and Accurate Troubleshooting): A sheep, she is the combat medic and engineer for the squad.
- Basil (Bionic Advanced Sabotage and Incendiary Lifeform): A breeding hog, he specializes in explosives and tactical arson.
- Paprika (Positronic Artificial Person Responsible for Immediate Killing and Assassination): A hen, she is the GOATS stealth and assassination expert.
- Rosemary (Robotic Operational Soldier for Engineering and Maintenance Ability): The mechanic, she is responsible for maintaining the secret base under the farm, as well as the shells. As a dairy cow, she uses the large amounts of grazing time to disappear for most of the day and night, typically only checking in with the humans on the farm for the morning milking, meals, and treats.
- Tarragon (Transforming Artificial Replicant Responsible for Assault Gunfire and Optimized for Nullification): A llama who serves as the squad's heavy weapons expert, and main source of one-liners.
- Zatar (Zeta Astrophysics Tactician for Approximating Reality): The science and strategy specialist, he is a horse who employs extremely advanced algorithms to predict enemy movement and is responsible for assigning missions. He rarely leaves the farm, instead covertly acting as Haruka's bodyguard while serving as mission control.
The GOATS in the Shell franchise has spawned several successful films.
- Goatal Recall
- When her memories are corrupted, Cinnamon goes on a tour of the countryside and Atlantica City.
- GOATS Protocol
The series was received favorably in the Verandi Empire, the novelty of the series and amusement factors have kept it on air consistently. As the program was one of the few in the Known Galaxy to even acknowledge Atlantica's existence, the show became an overnight success on the Breadbasket World. Naming pets after the characters became commonplace, so much that Haruka, a name that had been out of style for the past several decades, experienced a resurge in popularity, and Cinnamon became the most popular name for pet goats after the series began airing on the planet. Lord Atlantica invited the actors to the planet for a feast held in their honor as thanks for "bringing Atlantica onto the galactic stage". A mock-up of the setting where GOATS is supposed to take place in was constructed and remains one of the most visited attractions in the solar system.