Long before David Cage set about exploring the depths of what it means to be human and the struggle between the individual and the government, society at large, the supernatural and/or the self in games like Heavy Rain, Beyond: Two Souls and Detroit: Become Human, he may have predicted an element of the coronavirus. David Bowie was apparently part of the revelation, too!
At least, that’s what the internet believes amid the spread of the COVID-19 Omicron variant. The reason — back in 1999, Cage’s Quantic Dream studio burst onto the video gaming scene with its first title, which was called Omikron: The Nomad Soul in North America.
The original PC release of Omikron scored well with critics; IGN gave it an overall score of 8.5 out of 10. It was later ported to the Sega Dreamcast. Now, in 2021, it’s making waves as both a meme and fodder for the conspiracy theory crowd.
Not only is the title a soundalike for the Omicron variant that — as of this writing — has been deen detected in 12 U.S. states, per the New York Times, it also features the following speech from Bowie’s character, which has struck a chord with people who have become fed up with their governments in the wake of mask and vaccine mandates, lockdowns and overall pandemic exhaustion.
“Wake up, people of Omikron!” he declares. “Reshev and his corrupt government are lulling you to sleep in order to control you better. They have transformed you into puppets that are manipulated by Ix and the demons. Join the awakened ones and rise up to fight for your freedom. Together, we can win!”
The video has gone viral in recent days, with some going so far as to claim that it hints at the future, world-altering plans of one Bill Gates. Some tweeters have incorrectly attributed the game to Microsoft — it was released on Windows at the time, but The Nomad Soul is very much Cage’s brainchild.
In a 2011 piece for MCV, Cage revealed that he began writing the game’s script way back in 1994. Gates/Microsoft weren’t involved in any way, however:
Omikron: The Nomad Soul continues to be available on Steam for the low price of $9.99. If you think that tenner is going to unlock the secrets of COVID-19, the new world order and/or Joe Biden tracking your movements via nanobots injected into your bloodstream by way of the Pfizer vaccine, you’re probably going to be disappointed.
You will get some David Bowie, though, and that’s always a good thing.