Full disclosure. I wrote this over on my Giant Bomb account first. Link here.
I’m a Mass Effect superfan. Before I even owned an Xbox 360, I had been following this game. I dreamed of the day my poor college-attending ass would be able to play it. I thought about buying the game to play on my buddy’s 360. Yes, I wanted my hands on it this bad. The only other game I thought about doing this for was Metal Gear Solid 3, alas I still have yet to play that one. Mass Effect, on the other hand, was one of the first games I purchased when I came into a large sum of money after finishing college. Putting over 7 playthroughs and 200+ hours into Mass Effect, you could say I was somewhat excited for the sequel. You could also say I was squealing like a schoolgirl weeks before its release in January of 2010. I digress.
A post over on the Giant Bomb Mass Effect 3 forum gave me the idea for this blog. The premise was which characters I wanted to see return in Mass Effect 3. I gave a response, but I wanted to go a little more in depth with my answers. One, because I love talking Mass Effect with anyone and everyone, and two, I like to ramble on about stuff I love. Drinking makes this evident. If you listen to my Podcast, you will soon find out we drink and ramble about games. Most of the time when we listen back to it, we find ourselves yelling at our iPhones, PCs or iPods to “shut the fuck up, you drunk!”. True story. Anywho, as I sip my glass of Canadian Club Reserve, I present to you The Hero’s Return – A Mass Effect (3) blog. (Yes, that’s a Pink Floyd reference. I like to reference awesome when I blog. 😀 )
**NOTICE:** The following will contain spoilers for PS3 owners. If you have yet to play it, you might want to steer clear.
With the release of Mass Effect 3 technically under a year away, if you believe that it will make it out by December which I’m pretty confident it won’t, we have to imagine what will be the main plot. Ok, maybe we don’t have the imagine. The Reapers are coming and Shepard is the only person who can stop them. I saw another post in the forums about what Giant Bomb user DriveupLife had a theory on. His theory is about uniting the factions, which you can find here. I’ll be getting into why I like this theory and how I see it going down in a bit.
One thing I want from Mass Effect 3 is the possibility of space combat. A little something more advanced from the Kotor mini game Bioware did. Maybe a little more Halo: Reach-ish. Full control of the Normandy in a combat situation OR taking control of a one-maned fighter from a Capital Ship or from a Space Station or Installation.
The Normandy is docked at a station on the edge of The Terminus and it comes under Reaper attack, maybe Rogue Geth, maybe pirate attack. Shepard learns of the station’s fighter compliment. He orders the Normandy to battlestations and detach from dock. He and his two current companions along with the station’s fighter pilots launch their craft to defend the station. To cover if his companions can pilot the fighters or not, let’s say they either stay behind to help with the relief effort on board the station or he orders them back to the Normandy before she detaches. Why is there one extra fighter for Shepard? One of the pilots dies in an explosion before they launch for drama or the station has extra fighters in case of technical issues for practicality. Either way, both are probable instances for the story to move from there. Maybe Shepard gets hit near the end of combat and he gets captured before the Normandy can rescue him? Then we get a little action with Shepard on his own, stuck on an unknown ship trying to send an SOS to his companions informing them of his location.
See, I told you I like to ramble. With that part of a potential Mass Effect fantasy out of the way, I’ll move on to the support cast. Who I want to return as Shepard’s team. This doesn’t include the ship’s crew, for example, Kelly Chambers or Joker. Also this is where I’ll add my two cents about the factions being united. Keep in mind as I write this, my first Shepard was male soldier who chose Ashley then Miranda as his bed companions. So if I go on about things you didn’t experience, note this was my first experience.
Garrus Vakarian aka Archangel
The Turian. The Legend.
Garrus has become as big a part of Mass Effect as Shepard has. He will be in Mass Effect 3, he has to be. He is my favorite character in the franchise and I’ve always treated him as my Second-in-Command. Miranda may have the title, but he is the actual. He is my Shepard’s tactician and confident. He is my Turian Liaison and he probably has contacts within the Turian military. The Turians might be the hardest to convince of the Reapers existence, so he may be key to getting the ball rolling with his people, when he provides them with solid evidence of the true Reaper threat.
Ashley Williams/ Kaidan Alenko
Former lover makes a return.
For this part, I will be writing with Ashley in mind. For the most part, the same can be said for Kaidan.
Ashely was my Soldier Shepard’s love interest in Mass Effect and through my choices in Mass Effect 2, I believe I may have jeopardized my relationship with her. I chose to peruse relations with Miranda with my Soldier Shep and I had no idea that if you choose not to pursue a new relationship, Shepard would look at Ashley’s picture and smile on the journey through the Omega Relay. This blew my mind. It made me realize that there was a huge possibility of having Ashley make a return.
Be that as it may, having her return makes her a liaison to the Alliance. With a friend on the counsel with Anderson and Ashley on board, she will be able to keep tabs on Shepard and makes sure he’s telling the truth and truly no longer working with Cerberus. Having her back also opens up the romantic aspect of Shepard’s life. Does having her back make Shepard thing twice about his new relationship? Did he choose to stay faithful and now she’s back by his side? Maybe she has a new lover and you have to reprove yourself to her by saving this new man in her life. I want to see aspects of the original Mass Effect come full circle into the final chapter. I believe this is a good way to include some of that original story.
Tali’Zorah vas Normandy
The adorable engineer.
Tali is another one of those characters who have become a huge part of the Mass Effect franchise. Being a huge fan of the franchise, I love all aspects of the universe and don’t associate it with any one or two characters. When it comes to gamers less Mass Effect crazy who’ve played it, I can’t help but imagine the names Shepard, Garrus, Liara and Tali come to mind. She one of the faces of the franchise. Not only an expert in the field of Engineering, her demeanor is like none other among Shepard and Co. She’s kind-hearted, brave, brilliant, loyal and innocent . Innocent to the point when a romantic dialog opens up with her, she becomes fluttered and he responses are adorable.
Aside from being just an amazing character, she is Shepard’s only link to the Quarian. A race who excels in technology. They created the Geth. An self-aware AI capable of learning vast amounts of information and absorbing technology with ease. With help from Tali, Shepard could very well recruit the Quarians in Galaxy’s final hour. Of course, she was a possible love interest, so seeing her story arch with Shepard unfold would be a delight.
"Back off man, I'm a scientist."
SHADOW BROKER SPOILERS AHEAD!
You can stick whoever you want on the poster for Mass Effect, but Liara is one of the “poster child” characters of the franchise. Going from the sweet and innocent scientist from Mass Effect to the ruthless information broker we met in Mass Effect 2. Liara is close to Shepard, love interest or not. She would do anything for him. In her new position as Shadow Broker, she can help getting any and all information on anything he may need. Having her by his side will make the link to the Shadow Network even more valuable. Getting real time information on enemies, installations, etc. Feron could stay behind at HQ while she’s away. Plus, having access to Shadow Network agents would be resourceful in the coming events as well as unfolding any romance options Shepard may have pursued with her.
SHADOW BROKER SPOILERS END!
Last of the Battlemasters. Leader of the Krogan Clans.
Wrex has never been one to stand idly by while Shepard was in need. Yes, in Mass Effect 2, he couldn’t join you as his people needed him there, but with the coming threat of the Reapers, I think Wrex will join Shepard once more. He is the leader of his people and they will follow him into battle. With the Korgan behind Shepard, the Reapers will have their war. Grunt was fine and could be liaison to the Krogans, but Wrex is the original badass and won’t sit this one out. He can’t. His warrior blood wouldn’t allow it. That is, if he survived his time during Mass Effect, which in my experience, he most certainly did.
"Organics fear us. We wish to understand, not to incite."
Legion is the enemy. Correction, he was the enemy. Legion just wants what’s best for his people. The Geth are in civil war. The “Heretics” are under control of the Reapers, where as the rest of the Geth are apathetic toward organics. He was designed to interact with organics, specifically Shepard himself. Legion is the only liaison to the Geth Shepard has. In my experience, I helped with with a virus that would convert the Heretics into rejoining the other, good Geth. This, I believe, will be a huge impact in the third outing for Shepard. With the Geth fighting for organics, the armed force will be increased ten fold. Legion will become an important part of Mass Effect 3. It just seems like his storyline was the perfect setup for it.
Cerberus Officer. Genetically enhanced.
Miranda is, or should I say was, a loyal Cerberus Officer before the final moments of Mass Effect 2 in my experience. She is my Shepard’s current love interest and although an efficient soldier and biotic user, she most likely still has contacts within the Cerberus organization, maker her an asset in brining Cerberus resources to Shepard’s side in aid against the Reapers. Cerberus technology would be infinitely useful in combating the Reapers. She has given her full loyalty to Shepard and in turn makes her a powerful ally.
Back off man, I'm a...Oh...I used that one all ready. : \
Mordin is again, one of those team members that would be a good liaison to his people. The Salarians. In fact, he used to be a member of the Special Tasks Group. With contacts he, most likely, still has within the military and Shepard’s name among the STG from his deeds in Mass Effect in good form, they would be able to work their way at not only having the STG join the fight, but the Salarian military as well. On the plus, Mordin is an expert in scientific tech and some of his work would be a great help in fighting the Reapers.
On Death's door.
I like Thane, I really do. I’m not sure how much of a Military the Drell have, unless he has some friends who are also assassins, but I wasn’t sure what he could bring to the table. The main reason Thane is on this list, is because he’s kinda awesome. Besides that, I want to see where is story leads. Can we find a cure for his illness? Will he die before Earth’s final hour? Either way, I want Thane back for Mass Effect 3. If he’s to die, I want it to be an honorable one.
Rebel with a cause.
I surprised myself with this one. I don’t really like Zaeed. Never did. The fact he was the former leader of the Blue Suns mercenaries makes me think he might be a big asset in the fight to come. If he could regain command of the Blue Suns, he might be able to unite the merc groups under one flag. This would be a huge help for Shepard and with Zaeed’s loyalty, it might stay like that. I fear that if he were to gain that much power, he might not know how to handle it for the good of the galaxy. When the fight is over, it might have not been the best idea to give him that much power.
Look, we already have an Asari, sorry doll face. The reason she gets an honorable mention is because Samara probably has a lot more pull with the Asari government than Liara has, but other than that, I’m not sure she would be a huge help other than on a personal level, fighting by Shepard’s side. Unless she can recruit the Justicars, but I think that would just fall under the Asari Military. They can definitely bring her back to be the Asari liaison, since Liara kind of has her hands full with previously mention tasks. I think Samara is a super badass, so I’d love to have her for another round in the third outing.
There you have it! The character I want to return and my thoughts on the Uniting the Factions theory. Let me know what you think! Post you’re own theories or tell me I’m crazy! Come one, come all!
-Your friendly neighborhood SharpShotApollo