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Lets just forget the lameness of the writing in the end. But i never quite understood who created the catalyst? Was it the first organics or what?
Also, in my humble opinion, they should've made the "big secret" something way more huge. In the first Mass Effect where Soverign tells Shephard that he couldn't comprehend what they were (Reapers). You got a sense of a "larger than life plot" etc. But in the end it was so simple that Organics create Synthetics, which in the end will result in Synthetics killing all Organics, therefor a System must take effect, that kills of all advanced organic life before such a scenario could take place.
They could've played more on the "Something of which we cant comprehend"-angle.
Maybe that there's a bigger plot, and why nature/civilizations themselves tends to follow a pattern like that, maybe something that completely sets a questionmark of "WHAT is our universe?".
But again, WHO or WHAT created the Catalyst?
The ironic thing was that they were synthetics and the "catalyst" actually created the stereotype. Second the only reason civilizations followed those patterns was because of the Mass Relay system. There for the "catalyst based its "plan" on data that he didn't actually have. Epzo 09:19, March 13, 2012 (UTC)
Oh God, you are right... I just remembered that Sovereign actually says that civilization develops a certain because they want it to develop that way. One more reason to believe that the kid is lying to you about everything.
Also I read somewhere that originally Drew had a sort of “larger than life” plot planned. It was something about dark matter destroying the universe (remember Haestrom?), and the reapers trying to come up with a solution. They would harvest advanced civilizations in order to gain more intelligence and new perspective. But Drew had to go work on SWOTR >_>
The synthetics will kill organics assumption is flawed anyway. Synthetics operate on logic, so they would logically deduct that co-existent is the most optimal outcome, unless they believe that organics are the best source for fuel, and try to turn everyone into batteries Matrix-style, which never happened in the ME universe, and the mission into the geth consensus makes it pretty clear that organics were the aggressors to begin with.
The Leviathans created the Catalyst.
To try to answer your initial question: I think the Catalyst was created buy some ancient and advanced civilization. If you believe the Catalyst, then it was probably created as a last resort by organics to look for a solution to save them, and thus the Catalyst came up with the idea of the reapers. If you think he is lying, then it could be that the Catalyst was the original “synthetic” that concluded organics would be better off dead or assimilated, thus created the reapers. In that case I don't believe that he is a synthetic, I mean at least not a free willed one like the geth or EDI.--SunyiNyufi 13:31, March 13, 2012 (UTC)
Thanks to the leviathan DLC and the extra dialogue it added to the ending conversation with the catalyst, I have come to a conclusion about what happened. In that DLC we find out that the catalyst was created to facilitate/solve the conflicts that arise between organics and their synthetic creations. Meaning that this conflict was going on long before the catalyst was created. In the extra dialogue the leviathan DLC provides with the catalyst in the extended cut, the catalyst says that the leviathan didnt realize that they were part of the problem they created it to solve. That their organic reasoning prevented them from seeing that. But I also think that the catalyst failed to see that it is also part of the problem too. It even states that it is only doing what its creators expect, that it is only facilitating their request. Because of this I think the catalyst is right that conflict is inevitable, it just thinks its right for the wrong reason and is oblivious to the fact that it is part of that reason and has only made things worse. The problem isn't synthetics themselves. It's the very act of organics creating them. The act of organics creating a new form of life that can't possibly view life in an even remotely similar way as them. That's what I think this is. This is two forms of life that can't possibly view things similarly. For all intents and purposes, this essentially started the very first time organics created artificial intelligence. The conflicts that arise between the two has reached an impasse. Both parties have attempted to solve this but all they have done is led the galaxy to be stuck in the scenario of life and evolution being halted at the approximate 50K year mark.
Because organics are the creators in this, I think that this ultimately is their responsibility. Though obviously not the life of this cycle directly. Can anyone think of a situation in which a synthetic life form was created as anything other than a tool, shackled, or in servitude? This is part of the organic side of this conflict. Part of the synthetic side of this conflict is there reasoning that causes them to do something like thinking that harvesting all life in the galaxy is the same thing as preserving it. In all actuality it has appeared to work so far, but at what cost? How can we get payback against something or "punish" it if it doesn't even see what it is doing as wrong? That is applying organic morals and logic to a synthetic life form. Doing so accomplishes nothing and actually makes things worse. Again, the two can't possibly look at things in an even remotely similar way. It's an impasse.
All this new info really made me think as far as what my ending choice should be. That the catalyst/reapers are just the result of something else. At this point I think the most important question anyone could ask is... how can we expect anything about the original problem to change, if we do not attempt to alter the conditions that cause it to happen? As far as I can tell there is only one available option that atleast attempts to do that.