Warning: Spoilers ahead for the three Mass Effect trilogy. You've been warned.
Walk into any given video game store, and you'll doubtlessly see shelves lined with sci-fi games. From Halo, Destiny and Bioshock to No Man's Sky, Dead Space and dozens of Star Wars games, the options are limitless. But in the vast library of space games, the Mass Effect series stands out above the rest. Thankfully, we'll get even more of the sci-fi RPG world thanks to the follow-up Mass Effect: Andromeda.
Get a taste of this sci-fiworld with the trailer for Mass Effect: Andromeda:
BioWare released the first gameplay footage for the upcoming open world adventure, which will bring a whole new flavor to the Mass Effect universe. And while that footage looks amazing, it really reminds us of how the greatness of the original Mass Effect trilogy. The games have a really engaging story, and the amount of lore and world-building is astonishing. You really feel like you're a part of the vast Mass Effect universe. With that in mind, we're gearing up for Mass Effect: Andromeda with a look back at the 10 most unforgettable moments from the Mass Effect trilogy.
10. Creating Your First Shepard
If you play all three games back-to-back, you'll have the opportunity to import your player character from one game to the next. So, building your first Commander Shepard means creating a character that you will lead through an entire trilogy on a quest to save the entire universe. Exciting, isn't it?
Building your own Shepard means more than just choosing a gender and hairstyle. You get to create an entire backstory for your character, almost like Dungeons & Dragons. You choose the basic origins for your Shepard, their reputation from war, and your class. You can choose to be a guns-blazing soldier, a strong-minded biotic adept, or a mix of the two before you delve out into the great void.
9. Liara Meets Her Mother
In the three games, you meet many companions that you can bring with you on your missions. A few of these companions leave as soon as they arrive, but there are a handful of crew members that leave their mark across all three games, such as Dr. Liara T'soni. You meet Liara towards the beginning of the first game, and Shepard's friendship progresses with her to the bitter end.
At a particularly tricky point in the game, you encounter Liara's mother, Matriarch Benezia. Benezia, under the control of the villainous Saren and the Reapers, attacks you. Even once you try to beat some sense into her, she falls back under control of the enemy and you're forced to kill her. This is an even more emotional moment if you have Liara with you, as you'll get to experience an emotional mother/daughter moment firsthand.
8. Killing Kai Leng
In Mass Effect 3, Kai Leng spells a whole heap of trouble for you and your crew. He's an assassin hired by the sinister Illusive Man who attacks you on many occasions. And seeing as he's an assassin, death comes with him, including the deaths of important and beloved characters you've met throughout the trilogy.
When you finally best him for the final time, he gets back on his feet and tries to sneak up on you from behind. Luckily, with a simple quick-time event, you counter his attack and finish him off for good. It felt awesome to eliminate him in such a brutal and epic way after he caused you such trouble.
7. The Normandy Gets A Rude Awakening
The original Mass Effect was probably the hardest of the three games, making it so much more satisfying when you beat it and moved on to the next. Spinning out of the first, Mass Effect 2 has so many possibilities and we as players have so much to look forward to as we further Shepard's story.
After you save the Council and the entire universe in the first game, Mass Effect 2 starts out with your ship, the Normandy, being shot down. You barely have time to evacuate your crew before the Normandy explodes and you're left to die in the vastness of space. Of course, you're resurrected and rebuilt by an organization called Cerberus, but the game literally opening with a bang stands out in the pantheon of memories.
6. The Grand Finale
Not all unforgettable memories have to be happy ones. The ending off Mass Effect 3 was supposed to be a gratifying conclusion to the trilogy, but it ended up being a whole lot of death. After holding off wave after wave of enemies, you and your team make your way to a giant beam. Unfortunately, this means the death of your companions as you limp into the beam alone.
After a brief scene with the Illusive Man and Anderson, you end up on a space station where you converse with a small holographic child who tells you how to destroy the evil Reapers. However, destroying the Reapers also means destroying the Mass Effect relays, which were responsible for the bulk of space travel. Sadly, you had to give your own life as Commander Shepard dies with the Reapers. It's a sad and tragic ending, putting a melancholy cap on the trilogy.
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5. The Battle With Saren
As I mentioned before, the original Mass Effect is a tough one, and much of that is due to the final battle with Saren. You have to fight him a several times throughout the game, but after you defeat him in the Citadel, it seems like the final time. That is, until the Reapers reanimate his corpse into a synthetic super-Saren.
This battle isn't just memorable because it's the end of the first game. It really sticks with you because of how enraging it is. This super-Saren is much faster than the original, and he has several laser beams to overheat your weapons and inflict massive damage. And if you don't provide constant fire, his defensive shields reactivate. You have to perfectly balance your strategy between hiding and shooting to defeat him. The sheer amount of time that takes makes that particular battle stand out.
4. The Genophage Cure
You have to make a lot of tough decisions throughout Mass Effect 3, but one of the toughest lies in the Genophage mission. The Genophage was a disease meant to control the population of the war-loving Krogan race, but in order to obtain Krogan support against the Reapers, they make you cure the disease.
You're also informed of a sabotage implemented in the cure to trick them and keep their population in check, but your companion Mordin Solas also learns of the sabotage. He feels great regret for his part in creating the Genophage, so he wants only to deactivate the sabotage. That leaves with two choices: shoot your friend to prevent him from curing the warlords, or let him sacrifice himself to cure the Genophage. Either way, you're saying goodbye to a dear friend that has been by your side since the second game.
3. Shepard Faces The Reaper
There are so many great battles in all three games, but none feel quite as epic as the one-on-one fight against the Reaper in Mass Effect 3. You encounter other Reapers before in the game, but you use various environmental or military aids to take it down.
Towards the end of the game, you face a Reaper head-on. Armed with only a scanning-device to signal airborne assistance to fire, you have to avoid its devastating laser as the foe draws closer and closer. The games always make Commander Shepard out to be a legend, and this moment made me seem more legendary as a player than any other moment. This moment is so unforgettable that I look forward to this brief battle every time I go back to start a new playthrough.
2. A Life Or Death Decision
One of the most captivating elements of the Mass Effect trilogy is the way your choices alter the games's stories. Other games, such as Until Dawn, have built games around choices, but Mass Effect has utilized decision-making in a major way. You can literally decide the existence of entire races based on which dialogue options you choose.
One of the first times that you see the gravity of your choices is at the end of the first Mass Effect. Two crew members that have been with you since the beginning, Kaidan and Ashley, are busy setting explosives and fending off enemy reinforcements. In one crucial moment, you have to choose which one you save. You're choosing which of your friends to save, and who to leave to their deaths. This decision even carries on to the sequels if you import your character, so choose wisely.
Though let's be honest. Didn't we all save Ashley?
1. The Suicide Mission
Speaking of choices, Mass Effect 2 is full of choices that you don't even realize are important. The game has a main storyline as you take steps toward finding and destroying the evil Collectors. That path ultimately ends in the finale, a suicide mission to decide the fate of the universe. The odd part is that the success of your mission hinges on your effort on side missions.
Optional ship upgrades and crew member loyalty missions are crucial to the survival of your party members. You could choose the impatient path like I did, but that will result in the death of your crew. And if too many of them die, Shepard will be forced to give his/her life in order to complete the mission. All of the effort you put into resource management and side missions make this ultimate mission the most unforgettable moment in the entire Mass Effect franchise.
Relive the adventure of Mass Effect 3 with this trailer:
With Mass Effect: Andromeda swiftly approaching, we're in for even more great moments and more than a few tough decisions. After all the classic moments in the Mass Effect trilogy, a new installment in the franchise is sure to provide us with an unforgettable experience.