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LISTS: 10 Best Characters From Mass Effect

by Jason MoquinMay 1, 2012

What are the best characters to run around the galaxy in the Mass Effect franchise?

Now that the Mass Effect trilogy is over we thought it was fitting to list the 10 best characters from the series. The only stipulation is that they must either be controlled by the player or go out with the player on missions. That means we won’t be seeing Captain Anderson or Dr. Chakwas but we will be seeing…

NUMBER 10: Urdnot Wrex

Why he adds to the story: Over the span of the trilogy Wrex goes from a merc for hire to savior of the Krogan race for helping solve the genophage. He’s brash, overzealous and short tempered but he’s also a loyal ally. His stories of his merc days plus his personality make him a worthwhile squad member.

Why he adds to the gameplay: He’s a tank. His Krogan genes make him a giant bullet sponge and his assault rifles and shotguns let him mow down anything that moves. If that wasn’t enough, his mixture of warp, barrier, stasis and throw make him perfect for leveling a small army or one boss character. There’s an old joke about Krogan.

Q: What do you call an angry Krogan?
A: No one’s ever survived to find out.

NUMBER 9: Jack

Why she adds to the story: Jack has issues from being held against her will since childhood in order to create the perfect biotic killing machine. She doesn’t trust anyone and she’s not one for mercy. Her cynical viewpoint works well when played off of the other characters in your squad. The chance for a romantic encounter with Shepard and seeing her rise through the ranks gives a touch of humanity to her character.

Why she adds to the gameplay: She’s the most powerful human biotic. She comes armed with heavy pistols and shotguns equipped with warp ammo for up close combat and then shockwave and pull allows her to work crowd control during combat. Near or far she’s deadly.

NUMBER 8: Tali’Zorah nar Rayya

Why she adds to the story: Tali has been with us from game 1 and she’s grown from a naive upstart on a pilgrimage, to an Admiral in her people’s fleet. She is a cautious character that doesn’t take much for granted and her interactions with the other characters show how guarded she is. Her mistrust of the Geth is something that evolves very nicely over the span of all three games.

Why she adds to the gameplay: She’s all tech and shotguns. Her technical expertise is invaluable and over the 3 games she’s had powers all over the chart. She has everything from combat and defensive drones to hacking and decryption. She’s really the pocketknife of the Mass Effect series and an asset in almost every sort of mission.

NUMBER 7: Legion

Why he adds to the story: He’s the evolution of the Geth that brings them from a mindless hive to actual feeling creatures with their own personality and thoughts. He comes clad in some of Shepard’s style armor and joins Shepard’s fight as his own. Over the course of the games he shows the other squad members what weight synthetic life has and eventually becomes the savior of all Geth in the universe.

Why he adds to the gameplay: Armed with assault and sniper rifles he’s the perfect squad mate for individual kills or to thin a crowd. His powers allow him to take multiple hits with his Geth shield. His hacking and combat drones help nullify any mechanical resistance along the way.

NUMBER 6: Javik

Why he adds to the story: Javik is the last Prothean and the closest thing to “Planet of the Apes” in the series. Trying to stop the Reapers in his own time he was set in suspended animation and woke up 50,000 years later with all the different species that were nothing more then animals in his time now ruling the universe. He’s arrogant, close minded and standoffish which leads to interesting conversation chains between Javik and the other characters in your party.

Why he adds to the gameplay: He can use heavy pistols and assault rifles but where he shines is his ability to use Dark Channel and Lift Grenade to wear down groups of enemies and then slam and lift to finish off the stragglers. His mix of assault weapons and biotic powers makes him the most powerful party member you can have in the series, if only he wasn’t such a jerk….

NUMBER 5: Dr. Liara T’Soni

Why she adds to the story: Liara is another one that’s been there since day one. After being rescued from her archaeological dig she’s been a valuable ally either alongside Shepard in a firefight or working behind the scenes as the Shadow Broker. She’s an optional romantic interest for Shepard and her research of the Prothean civilization helps give insight to the series.

Why she adds to the gameplay: She’s a biotic powerhouse that helps out her squad with warp, stasis, and singularity. Her ability to wear down barriers and armor and freeze threats in place makes her a must have on missions. Add in her warp ammo for heavy pistols and submachine guns and you have a squad member that makes missions a lot easier.

NUMBER 4: Mordin Solus

Why he adds to the story: Mordin is at the head when it comes to the genephage and he still defends it to this day even if it also bothers him that it had to come to that. He’s very literal and exact but also has glimpses of a true “humanity” under it all. Out of all the characters he’s the most fleshed out as a character and his interactions with the rest of the squad are too good to pass on.

Why he adds to the gameplay: While he only offers heavy pistols and submachine guns his real asset to the team comes from his incinerate, cryo blast, and neural shock powers. He can freeze the areas around soldiers, burn through their armor, and impair their accuracy. He’s a potent ally that can help out in almost any situation.

NUMBER 3: Jeff “Joker” Moreau

Why he adds to the story: Joker is the ace pilot of the Normandy and also provides humor in dire situations. He’s disabled with a condition that makes his bones brittle and fragile yet without his skill and expertise flying, the team would have been pushing up daisies long ago. His humor is one of the best parts of the series and it’s worth visiting him as often as you can for the newest quip.

Why he adds to the gameplay: Even though his bones may be brittle his melee attack is…….no, he’s not an asset in any way as a playable character. What he does provide is a look at the Mass Effect universe through someone that’s not a well trained killing machine. His limitations enhance how powerful your heroes really are.

NUMBER 2: Commander Shepard

Why he or she adds to the story: This is YOUR story! YOU’RE the hero and depending on what YOUR background, race and sex are this is the universe made for YOU. Remember that time on Citadel? When YOU were named a Spectre? Remember Noveria? Remember getting the squad back together? TWICE? There’s no story better then the one YOU created.

Why he or she adds to the gameplay: What did you pick? Adept? Sentinel? Soldier? Something else? Your powers are awesome and if you don’t have powers then those guns are fantastic!

Number 1: The Normandy (1 or 2)

Why it adds to the story: This is the main set piece of the entire universe. Remember all the memorable things that happened on the Normandy? Remember meeting Nihlus? Taking over for Captain Anderson? Watching it being blown to pieces by the Collector’s ship? The models in your cabin? The talks on the lower decks? The Normandy is the home to everything and everyone who is important in the Mass Effect trilogy.

Why it adds to the gameplay: How else are you going to get around the galaxy…….walk?

Jason Moquin
Oh this is where I get to say something about myself like I was captain of the debate team or that I was once king of Prussia. Well games, let's throw games in there, and I like sports, and comics, and animated things, mostly Japanese giant robots, oh and pasta, big fan of pasta. You know all shapes taste different? Each one has a distinctive bite and holds the sauce differently. A lot of people are like "PASTA IS PASTA" and I say "STOP YELLING AT ME".

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