* ActorAllusion:
** When Tali gets drunk, she complains that Shepard saying "Aah!" makes him/her sound just like a vorcha. Mark Meer, Male Shepard's voice actor, also voices all of the vorcha characters encountered throughout the games.
** During the "energetic" party at the end of the Citadel DLC, [[spoiler:Grunt can be found drunk on the shower floor mumbling a bunch of nonsense to himself. One of the things he says is "Who's a [[CowboyBebop space cowboy?]] [[SteveBlum Me!]]"]]
*** Earlier in the game, [[spoiler: if he survives the rachni caves]], the first thing a weary Grunt asks Shepard is [[DigimonTamers "Can we get something to eat?"]].
* AscendedFanon: Among the other fandom nods in the Citadel DLC, Traynor makes some of the "[[http://savegameonline.com/c3-features/save-games-mass-effect-squadmate-cocktails-the-best-drinks-this-side-of-the-citadel squadmate cocktails]]" drawn up here, referring to the "Shadowbrokertini" and "Full Biotic Kick" by name.
* AuthorExistenceFailure: Creator/RobinSachs, the voice actor for Zaeed Massani, passed away after the release of the game but before all of the DownloadableContent was released. His lines for ''Citadel'' were recorded before his death.
* {{Defictionalization}}: Oddly {{inverted}}. In ''Mass Effect'', Shepard wore the iconic ''N7'' armor, which was [[TheMerch merchandized as a hoodie]]. But now, ''Mass Effect 3'''s [[LimitedSpecialCollectorsUltimateEdition Collector's Edition]] will let Shepard, in the game itself, ''wear that very same hoodie''.
* FandomNod: Silversun Strip in the ''Citadel'' [[DownloadableContent DLC]] has several pairs of off-duty mercenaries and regular troops you can overhear conversations from. Virtually all of them gripe about annoyances and issues in the multiplayer.
** In the Castle Arcade, a turian sentinel and salarian infiltrator discuss weapon and equipment selection for dealing with foes. The turian is rather...[[WhenAllYouHaveIsAHammer enthusiastic]] about detonating his Tech Armor, while the salarian argues for more [[TacticalRockPaperScissors diversity of tactics]]. The two talk about numerous enemy types faced in the game and what to do about them, and it sounds like [[StopHavingFunGuys a forum argument about how to optimize multiplayer characters]].
** An asari adept and an asari vanguard complain about other biotic-capable races. This includes the drell, pointing out how one of them seems to kick the air for no reason and steals grenades all the time, and humans, who toss singularities way too often.
** A human infiltrator complains to a vorcha soldier about how her squad was unavailable and she was called to a mission immediately, and [[PickUpGroup thus had to hook up with the nearest N7 forces whom she never worked with before]]. She wanted a nice, smooth mission but their unfamiliarity turned it into a train wreck. The rest of the group stood in the open at the top of a ramp, the ex-Cerberus vanguard kept [[LeeroyJenkins racing forward to disable indoctrination devices]] instead of [[InvisibilityCloak letting the infiltrator do it]], etc.
** An N7 Fury talks with an Alliance requisition officer, discussing the new gear she's supposed to get. The officer ends up delivering a Graal Spike Thrower VII, thermal clip packs, and strength enhancers - all useless to a light biotic class such as hers. Turns out the RandomNumberGod-nature of the store is just a hilariously inept bureaucracy managing the supply chains.
--->'''Fury''': You are the reason we are losing this war!
** A 'veteran' Alliance soldier and engineer go on a nostalgia trip (reflecting the nature of the game back at release) and consequently complain about how all their allies have shiny new equipment and rather improbable combat tactics (which is what the game has become after a year). Their points of discussion include two N7 characters, the new Armiger Legion turians, and biotic volus.
--->'''Engineer''': Or those N7 engineers, with their grenade pylons. Who needs that many grenades?
--->'''Soldier''': I joined up with turians on this drop onto one of their colonies...you know what those crazy birds bust out? Jet boots! What kind of frontline soldier needs a pair of damn jet-boots? It's just showing off is what it is.
** Another complaint from the Veteran Soldier is the unfairness of N7 Demolisher's strutting around like a WalkingArmoury.
** The funniest complaint may be about the sudden inclusion of Volus troops and their tendency to toss grenades around that have yields high enough for them to be considered weapons of mass destruction.
** It's not just the multiplayer, either. Drunk! Tali references an infamous forum thread debating what her sweat would smell like (yes, it actually happened). "It just smells like sweat! [[{{Squick}} Why would you even ask that?]]" Shepard references Jack and Miranda shippers, and Joker finally has the nerve to ask how Kaidan gets his hair like that (it's static from using his biotics).
** While scanning Bryson's office for clues the first time in "Leviathan", EDI performs an extranet search on the term "basilisk" for Shepard. Among her search results is a video game enemy that's getting called "overpowered" on forums because of its OneHitKO attacks - a criticism often leveled at Banshees on the BioWare site.
* FanNickname:
** The nameless sniper from the first trailer was called "Big Ben" until he was revealed as Major Coats in the game.
** People on Gamefaqs appear to like calling the boy seen at the beginning of the game, "Vent Boy".
** As mentioned above, Phantoms have become "Ninja Bitches".
** James Vega: All of [[MysteryScienceTheater3000 David]] [[SpaceMutiny Ryder's]] nicknames.
** [[spoiler:"[[ShapedLikeItself Prothy the Prothean]]"]] for the [[WalkingSpoiler spoilerific]] {{DLC}} squadmate. Referenced in-game when Joker insists on calling [[spoiler:Javik]] by that name; [[spoiler:Javik]], true to form, [[TheAllSolvingHammer threatens Joker]] [[ThrownOutTheAirlock with an airlocking]].
** Diana Allers is called "Space [[JerseyShore Snooki]]."
** The [[spoiler: Catalyst ]] has earned the nickname "Task Manager", because it gives you the option of [[spoiler: controlling the Reapers, altering them, or deleting them. In other words [[DontExplainTheJoke CTRL+ALT+DELETE.]]]] He's also commonly referred to as [[TwoThousandOneASpaceOdyssey Starchild]].
** Similarly, 'Space Magic' for the [[spoiler:power of the Crucible]].
** "Marauder Shields" and "The Three Husketeers", the four enemies encountered on the way to the beam in London [[spoiler: that wind up being the final enemies you fight in the whole series]].
** After some hilarious and well-written multiplayer guides, the Krogan Vanguard is now the Murder Train and the Krogan Warlord is the Hammerlord.
** The new "retrieval" objective has been dubbed the Pizza Delivery. Lampshaded in the Citadel DLC, when they're planning the raid on the Archives; Vega gets hungry and orders a ''literal'' pizza delivery.
** "Enforcement gauntlets"? Nooooo, the batarians use the [[VideoGame/SuperSmashBros Falcon Punch]].
** "Super MAC" for the [[ScapegoatCreator lead writer]] Mac Walters.
* HeyItsThatVoice:
** Whatever one may think about the endings, the fact that ''Buzz Aldrin'' of all people [[spoiler:voices the grandfather in the [[DistantFinale epilogue]]]] is its own shade of awesome.
** [[Music/HeyOcean Ashleigh Ball]] is an Asari soldier.
** Creator/BrianBloom is Vosque.
** Dr. Brynn Cole is [[VideoGame/DragonAgeII Female Hawke]].
** Major Coats is [[VideoGame/DragonAgeII Male Hawke]]. He also voices a scientist that talks to Brynn and, [[spoiler:if you betray Wrex and sabotage the genophage cure, a guard that Wrex [[OffhandBackhand backhands]] during your confrontation]].
** TroyBaker is Kai Leng - his second [[EverythingsBetterWithSpinning overly spinny]] [[TheSouthpaw left-handed]] BloodKnight [[VideoGame/TalesOfVesperia swordsman]]. Once you hear that, it kind of looks like he kills [[spoiler: Thane]] with Azure Edge...
** GreyDeLisle is Kahlee Sanders.
** In ''[[ShowWithinAShow Blasto 6]]'', Bubin's sister is voiced by JenniferHale, while Blasto is voiced by Mark Meer.
** The replacement asari councilor is [[WesternAnimation/JusticeLeague Wonder Woman]] and [[VideoGame/TheForceUnleashed Shaak Ti]].
** James Vega is [[Film/WingCommander Chris Blair]], [[Series/TwentyFour Cole Ortiz]] and [[Film/ScoobyDoo Fred Jones]].
** Nyreen is [[WesternAnimation/TransformersPrime Arcee]].
* IKnewIt:
** BioWare forum user ''screwoffreg'' accurately described Mass Effect 3's ending word-by-word [[http://social.bioware.com/forum/1/topic/105/index/970146/1 way back in 2010.]]
--> [[spoiler: "There are two endings I wouldn't like for ME 3. One being a random GOD LIKE force that saves the Galaxy or another being that to defeat the Reapers, everyone has to become a primitivist and destroy the Relays, Citadel, etc. Both would make me pretty unhappy as those endings have been done to death."]]
--->'''screwoffreg''', a.k.a. "the Prophet".
** On the Mass Effect 3 Multiplayer boards, there were various ideas being thrown around for defecting Reaper troops. When the Leviathan DLC emerged, the Leviathan became [[MindControl the most lore-friendly means of doing so]]. Come the ''Reckoning'' DLC, that's what happened with the Collector Adept, though most ideas had the defecting Reapers still be thralls of the Leviathan.
* LyingCreator:
** Pre-release press statements were that playing Multiplayer, and getting their War Asset multipliers, would not be a necessity for those who wished to get the GoldenEnding. However, though ''most'' endings can be achieved without Multiplayer, there are not enough War Assets available in the game to unlock the highest-tier endings. Although the Extended Cut DLC fixed it, the issue remains that the initial promise was a lie.
** Mac Walters, the lead writer, made a statement before release saying that the presence of the Rachni played a major role in the third game or even just in the final battle. In the actual game, the rachni appear in one side mission, and don't appear at all during the final battle or any other time. It should be noted that this statement was made after the game went gold.
** In a rare positive example, BioWare initially claimed that the Extended Cut DLC would not be changing the endings, but instead expand and clarify them. [[spoiler: While there was definitely a lot of that, it also [[{{Retcon}} changed]] a lot of the more contentious [[PlotHole plot holes]] and most of the SuddenDownerEnding, such as damaging the mass relays instead of destroying them.]] Cue ([[BrokenBase most]]) fans rejoicing.
** After confirmation that [[http://www.6aming.com/mass-effect-3-citadel-dlc-a-fake/ a "Citadel" DLC was false information]], that very DLC [[http://m.joystiq.com/2013/02/21/mass-effect-3-reckoning-and-citadel-dlc-hit-feb-26-mar-5/ was announced as the truth]].
* NamesTheSame: Miranda's father Henry Lawson shares the name with an early [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Lawson Australian Poet]], which is apt considering the likely origin of the Lawson family based on their accents.
* [[PromotedFangirl Promoted Fan]]:
** Jessica Chobot of [=G4TV=] [[http://www.g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/post/720362/mass-effect-3-jessica-chobot-talks-romance/ plays Diana Allers]], a new love interest for Shepard.
** Freddie Prinze Jr., who voices James Vega, has also stated that he's a fan of the first two games.
* RelationshipVoiceActor:
** Creator/SethGreen (Joker) and Freddie Prinze Jr. (James Vega) previously worked together on ''Scooby Doo: Monsters Unleashed''. On top of that, Green, Brandon Keener (Garrus Vakarian) & Creator/RobinSachs (Zaeed Massani) used to work on ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'' with Prinze Jr's wife, Creator/SarahMichelleGellar.
** As mentioned above, Dr. Baynar and Dr. Cole are voiced by Nicholas Boulton and Jo Wyatt, who played Male and Female Hawke in ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII''.
** If you have Ashley in your party for when you fight [[TroyBaker Kai Leng]], you'll essentially end up with [[VideoGame/BatmanArkhamCity Oracle vs. Robin]].
* ScapegoatCreator: Casey Hudson and Mac Walters are personally blamed for everything that is wrong with the game.
* TeasingCreator: Here's a [[http://www.tentonhammer.com/me3/news/twitter-posts-hint-at-more-possible-surprises-for-mass-effect-3%20?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss pretty good rundown.]]
* TheOtherDarrin: William Salyers takes over for Michael Beattie as Mordin. Wreav also has a voice actor change, but since nobody really liked Wreav anyway, it doesn't get much comment.
* TrollingCreator: [[spoiler: The creator tweets refusing to explain the ending and saying to wait for future announcements, therefore fueling speculation like the Indoctrination Theory or ending DLC, and keeping the fan outcry from burning out. Possibly the ending itself, which was expected to create "lots of speculation". The new 'Refusal' ending from the Extended Cut is even being out and out reviled by many as a troll ending (although some fans specifically requested it).]]
* WhatCouldHaveBeen:
** A [[spoiler:Reaper-ized version of the Illusive Man]] was considered as the FinalBoss, but rejected as uncharacteristic: [[spoiler:the Illusive Man's strength is his mind, so making him a bullet sink would diminish him. Instead, he casually strolls in and neutralizes Shepard with Reapertech indoctrination abilities; to win, you have to [[TalkingTheMonsterToDeath Talk Him To Death]] - either by [[DrivenToSuicide Driving Him To Suicide]] to save humanity from his mistakes, or [[IShallTauntYou Taunting Him]] into dropping his guard]].
** There were deleted scenes and ideas that would have made the end much more bearable, such as [[spoiler:the Normandy performing an epic GunshipRescue while Hammer makes the desperate dash for the Conduit while taking fire from Harbinger (which was ultimately put back in for the Extended Cut)]], and [[spoiler:[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rI1oUAUe4Qg this conversation between Shepard and Anderson]]]].
** From the script leak: a few post-Rannoch mentions of Admiral Xen, including a direct confrontation and Hackett reporting [[spoiler: a botched attempt to hack the geth after peace is declared. She wouldn't have succeeded, but it would have cost the geth a few ships.]]
** Ditto: the Thessia mission might seem like a gut-punch as-is, but it could have included [[spoiler: a choice between saving Ashley / Kaidan and Liara. It's unclear whether there would have been any way to avoid it (say, if you held you own against Kai Leng), but all that remains of that scene is the bit where the temple floor collapses beneath Shepard. There was also a bit with Leng framing Shepard for several murders on Eden Prime to turn Ash[=/=]Kaidan against them. An alternative version of the script indicates that after the recruitment of the Virmire Survivor was moved to the Cerberus Coup story arc, the choice would have been between Liara and whichever other squadmate you took with you to Thessia (as Liara was mandatory for that mission).]]
** Unused dialogue shows that there was originally more to the final battle (or that at least Jack, Jacob, Zaeed and Grunt played more of a role).
** Originally, the team with Shepard at the start of the [[spoiler:run towards the beam would have died no matter what, when caught in one of Harbinger's beams]]. The scene was cut after [[spoiler:it was decided that just killing two of Shepard's team with no fanfare & regardless of Shepard's choices to that point was too cold hearted, especially when you factor in that it could potentially include Shepard's love interest]]. This is worked back into the Extended Cut - [[spoiler: if your EMS score is too low, you're treated to the sight of Harbinger disintegrating both your squadmates.]]
** Datamining has uncovered a [[http://www.holdtheline.com/threads/datamining-the-trilogy-aka-things-that-were-cut.2073/ massive amount of cut material]]. Notably: Javik and Eden Prime originally had much larger roles in the story (Likely cut once it became clear that Javik would be DLC), the Cerberus coup arc went ''much'' differently ([[spoiler:Kai Leng was nowhere in sight and Thane's death was much more heroic]]), and Thessia was going to have a Virmire-esque decision at the end to save a squadmate. Probably the absolute biggest change was that [[spoiler: Javik was originally meant to ''be'' the Catalyst, as in "the final missing piece of the Crucible that would activate it", not "the leader of the Reapers who offers you a choice."]]
*** Other cut elements include: a proper romance scene with Kelly, Kal'Reegar and Emily Wong not dying offscreen but actually being present and meeting Shepard, a lengthy explanation of the preparations that went into the Cerberus Coup, at least twice the squad banter both in-mission and on-ship (mostly discussing plot points left unresolved by the final game), and while it wasn't designed as a second hub (a-la Citadel) as initially promised, Omega served as a source for several lengthy quest chains that included hunting down Cerberus officers, venturing beyond the Omega-4 relay and, if you did particularly well, breaking the Only Rule Of Omega.
** As with the previous games, leftover voice over files (and one interview with Mark Meer) imply that at some point in development James Vega was not only supposed to be romanceable, but also to be available as a LoveInterest for Shepards of both genders (though the ''Citadel'' [[DownloadableContent DLC]] reintroduces this element for a female Shepard.) The same seems to have been planned for Tali (there are voice-overs for [=FemShep=] for scenes that only take place with a romanced Tali, but this was also true for ''Mass Effect 2'', alongside Miranda and Jack).
** One of the original concepts of the game was for Shepard to implant himself with [[http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-con2aYvWLMg/Ue6kB0A95tI/AAAAAAAAA4I/UT3esC__BGY/s1600/Shepard_Ash_Showdown.jpg reaper technology to combat the reapers]] ([[NotSoDifferent Just like Saren.]]) This would have led to conflict with the Virmire Survivor.
** Hell, it's clear from the datamining that virtually '''everything''' about ''Mass Effect 3'' was changed during development.