Well the Rachni haven’t had any opportunity to showcase their scientific and engineering prowess in the current timeline, nor have they had around three hundred years of isolation to themselves to develop their holdings. We do know, however, that they did produce space age equivalent feats of architecture on their home world of Suen even before they achieved space flight, as a necessity to their planet’s harsh environment, and that they were adept enough to jump to work on the Crucible with no problem.
Sure the Geth might have a higher end capacity once they have established a collective consciousness “as large as a galactic arm” as EDI puts it in ME 2, but the Rachni are far more cost efficient for a start up colonization effort. You can send a single queen down to a planet and within two years she can establish a nest with enough capacity to see her broods being able to see galaxy wide deployment. A single Geth program will be no smarter than a low end VI and until they reach that ‘critical mass’ of networked processing power you won’t see them doing much of anything outside of rudimentary animal intelligence. Even your “mindless” Rachni drones and soldiers possess enough of an intelligence to construct proto-colonies (perfect foundations for AI prefab shelters) as well as engage in hit and run attacks against a modern military armed with nothing but claws and acidic spit (zero cost covert ops forces). With the Geth, unless you are going to bring along an established mini-Consensuses and are willing to devote valuable resources like plastics, metals, and computer hardware (resources needed for your colony ships and structures) to make more of themselves, you won’t be getting much use out of them.
That being said, I completly agree with you last point, and I am really hoping that species like the Rachni and Geth (preferably the ME 2 version) will make the trip to Andromeda. The setting feels so meh without the more alien races to give it depth and diversity.
God no, I want to have a bloody good idea of what sort of civilisation I’m leaping into before I take off on a one way trip to a long time ahead in a galaxy far, far away. You don’t want to leave it to whatever bunch of whackos have enough free time to think up new plans for civilisation once you get there. That would surely lead to the whole thing splintering with fighting, exiles, factions breaking away to set up their own way of living in… oh… never mind, as you were. Story wise I’m sure the half arsed chaotic approach be far more entertaining. Where’s the fun in a tale full of competent people co-operating reasonably.
Imagine, if you would, that as a younger child you and some friends wanted to go and play pretend super heroes, so you all go outside and begin to pick your super powers. One girl wants invisibility, but this other boy says that he has invisibility but somehow better than the girl. Another boy says he wants the ability to control fire, but then that same boy from earlier pipes up and says that he has that power too, but way better than the second. And so on and so forth until this one kid has all the powers and can use each one of them better than anyone else. You also can’t tell this kid off or exclude him from playing because the parents watching you all are ensuring that everyone has to play. Doesn’t sound like much fun does it? That’s basically what it’s like with humanity compared to all the other species and races in these settings.
I’m tired of hearing how great we are at everything, at how no one can match up to our ingenuity or “genetic diversity”, it’s dull and comes across as a poor man’s fanfic involving self gratification. Maybe if the setting was more balanced and humanity wasn’t some innate “God race” I would find them more interesting. As it is now, I find it very hard to see humanity as anything even remotely similar to an underdog. I feel more interest and concern for a continued presence in the universe towards the alien side of things (the actual underdog in these settings) than I ever did for humanity.