Has Bioware secretly listened to Nevermore?

OK, for those of you who don’t know Nevermore, it is (or maybe rather was) a Thrash/Prog Metal band from Seattle with a unique sound.
However, the history of Nevermore is not that important now – although Rabidgames recommends to check the band out anyway.

The reason Rabidgames mentions Nevermore in connection to his blog is that there are undeniable similarities between two of Nevermore‘s songs and one of the core plots of the Mass Effect series:
Artificial Intelligence gaining consciousness.

First of all, please let Rabidgames present the two songs in question:

The first one is The Learning from the album The Politics of Ecstasy and deals with an AI gaining self-awareness:

The second song is Sentient 6 from This Godless Endeavor (according to the band, this song is officially a sequel to The Learning):

If you pay attention to the lyrics, both songs deal with the very same questions the Mass Effect series also deals: What would happen if machines actually gain consciousness?
Surprise, surprise: In both cases, it is bound to end in misery, in the eradication of organic life forms.

The Learning describes which effect such an event could have on both sides. Let’s have a look at the Geth: They gained consciousness and just wanted to exist. This raised a question the Quarians weren’t prepared to deal with (the lyrics are from The Learning):

“When man and machine become one,
innocence is lost, a new age begun
This raises a question of philosophy
Should machines be considered a conscious entity?”

Now, we know what happened to the Quarians and the Geth (it might not be the same to all of us though) …

While the Geth are presented as a rather defensive AI (except for the Heretics at least), the creators of the Reapers thought organics would eventually build powerful, sentient machines which would eradicate them.
Now guess what happens in Sentient 6?

The machine eventually sees mankind’s imperfection and starts a process of eradication. The reasons are also explained in Nevermore’s Sentient 6:

Trained I see imperfection in your race
Lying in wait, blind I suffer knowing I’ll never reach your heaven
It’s unattaintable, please teach me how to dream
I long to be more than a machine

We don’t know if the creators of the Reapers (or the Bioware writers) feared exactly this development. However, we do know they feared that any advanced civilisation would irrevocably build the means to its own annihilation. Or, as Nevermore stated (in a hidden backwards message at the end of Sentient 6):

“I am bringer of the end, fear me.
I am the beast, that is technology.”

Rabidgames wonders: Could all this just be coincidence? Yes. But maybe some writers draw some inspiration from Nevermore’s songs about sentient machines …it’s certainly not a crime to like this band.

Rabidgames’ side note:
Bioware would certainly not be the first company to get some inspiration from Metal bands. Obvious instance such as soundtracks ör Brütal Legend aside, there are many hints you only get if you know a bit about this style: All achievements of Mercenaries 2 are tributes to famous songs, Arena champions in Oblivion can choose to be called “Man o’War” (male) or “Iron Maiden” (female), and in Fallout 3‘s Broken Steel DLC, there are some Strapping Young Lad lyrics hidden in a computer somewhere in the tunnels …


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