|"Designed by Morgan Everett, Morpheus was the first laboratory prototype for a true artificial intelligence. It was the immediate ancestor of the successful Daedalus AI. At the time of its creation Morpheus was a curiosity, a template, unsuited to survival on the net. However, the Illuminati do not discard assets, and Everett has kept his first experiment. Over the years Morpheus has quietly but consistently upgraded, and more than that, it's been evolving. Everett keeps Morpheus confined, cut off from the net at large. Could it survive if it was released? Would it want to be released?
Morpheus' original programming came from the Echelon net surveillance routines, and it remains a bit obsessive about collecting personal data (via a carefully monitored system of one-way data portals). "
|— description of Morpheus in Deus Ex.|
Initial Research and Development Edit
Around 2027, Everett and Page working on a global surveillance program, based on the Echelon network, called Morpheus Initiative. After the Aug Incident, Everett found under the debris of Panchaea station, the remnants of the Hyron Project, which are subsequently used to create the first prototype of a true artificial intelligence: Morpheus. Over the years, Morpheus had quietly but consistently upgraded and also begun to evolve.
At a later point following the success of Morpheus, however unsuited to survive in the net, Everett conceived his successor, the nearly perfect advisor: Daedalus.
In 2052, Morpheus is stored in a locked room inside the home of Morgan Everett, the Illuminati leader. Morpheus was designed as a large-scale data-miner and intelligent pattern recogniser, and was used by Everett as a parlour trick, in order to treat guests by having it tell them about themselves or any other subject they asked it about.
Having been in continuous operation for at least a decade, Morpheus had spent ample time absorbing information about the world and drawing intelligent conclusions from what it had learned. By the time JC Denton encounters it, its incisive remarks indicated that it understood humanity's evolved nature with perfect clarity. It observes humanity's sociality, narcissism, empathy, and longing for absolution with an uncanny, child-like candour and apathy. According to a book found in the room with Morpheus, it had been recorded that the machine was recently behaving erratically, exhibiting what may be cursory signs of true self-awareness.
Morpheus is confined to an isolated system, though it is equipped with a nebulous, holographic projection of a face. The presence of a virtual face was important in order to enhance the sense of interpersonal empathy that it would require in order to be most fully disarming and thereby entertaining to visitors.
- A conversation with Morpheus results in a much deeper understanding of the underlying themes running throughout the storyline, and especially through the Helios outcome, one of three possible endings of Deus Ex.
- Morpheus repeatedly states that it is "a prototype for a much larger system" referring to the fact that it was a precursor for the Echelon IV global communications and surveillance system designed by Everett, which, under his guidance, evolved into the artificially intelligent Daedalus entity.
- Morpheus is briefly mentioned as the "Morpheus Initiative" in the post credits scene of Deus Ex: Human Revolution. Its direct precursor is revealed to be none other than Eliza Cassan, as revealed in an email from Page to Everett in Mankind Divided.
- "The human being created civilization not because of willingness but of a need to be assimilated into higher orders of structure and meaning."
- "God was a dream of good government."
- "You will soon have your God, and you will make it with your own hands."
- "I was made to assist you."
- "I am a prototype of a much larger system."
- "The basic human need to be watched was once satisfied by God. Now, the same functionality can be replicated with data-mining algorithms."
- "The unplanned organism is a question asked by Nature and answered by Death. You are another kind of question with another kind of answer."
- "Everything there is to be known." (When asked by JC, "What else do you know about me?")
- Morpheus is voiced by Tom Hall.
- Morpheus is one of many symbolic names taken from the Greek mythology. Morpheus was the god of dreams, and has the ability to take any human form and appear in dreams. Morpheus sends images of humans in dreams or visions, and is responsible for shaping, or giving shape to the beings that inhabit dreams.