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February 11, 2002

More on the Master Chief and the Marathon cyborg. Keep it coming.

Gustav SondÈn ( writes:

I just happened to notice a small quote from Fall of Reach: "He displays an odd sort of attitude for a creation of the military: he does not glorify his actions, he merely does what he has to do. He does not hate his enemy; he kills them because he knows it is his duty to kill them. "It wasn't [the Chief's] job to make things suffer - he was just here to win battles. Whatever it took."

This is hardly breaking news i know, but thats state of mind is very similar to that of the cyborg in Marathon. He never objects to the orders either of the AI's give , even though he know they work against each other some times. That always seemed a bit odd to me, the side swapping. I was wondering, could this be something the cyborgs have been programed to do? Maybe an implant that suppress any moral objections if the order is given from an authorized source(such as Marathon AI's).

It would hardly be surprising if this is the case. You wouldn't want your battleroid having second thoughts. The real reason i'm sending this is because in that quote it sounds as if it was in the Chief's nature to follow orders no matter the consequences. I don't think that's the case. I think he's been programmed to do so. Or more correctly, i think the cyborg in marathon has and i also think they are of the same kind.

I think it's important to note that while the Chief always follows orders, he isn't always happy about it; after his Spartans nuke Cote D'Az?r to the bedrock, he spends much time devoted to the moral quandries caused by such an event. Also, after the fall of Reach, the Master Chief goes into a sort of regession, having lost all of his Spartans. The Master Chief tries to win, in the most glorious, pyrric sort of way, but he certainly harbors moral discontentment afterwards.

That said, note that the Master Chief never seems to feel sorry for his enemies. He kills the Covenant and thinks not much of it, just as the Marathon cyborg waded through the ranks of Pfhor garrisons, never batting an eyelash at the fact that he was a mass murderer. Or, perhaps he did. The Electric Sheep levels, anyone? If that's not the closest thing to the cyborg's nightmares, I don't know what is.

Such are the dreams of machines....

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