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"Grunt is... not a stabilizing element, Commander."A young lab-grown krogan with a violent attitude who believes that might makes right.
Voiced by: Steve Blum
- Alcohol-Induced Idiocy: During the Citadel DLC for 3, Grunt decides to celebrate his "birthday" by having a wild night out on the Citadel. Much property damage and hilarity ensues.
- Appropriated Appellation: He took the name "Grunt" from one of Okeer's last words. It's noted that there were some more impressive words to use as a name, but he liked "grunt" for its simplicity (and because it has no greater meaning).
- Asskicking Equals Authority: How Grunt asserts his command of Aralakh Company (essentially a collection of the best warriors from every krogan clan on Tuchanka) in Mass Effect 3.
- Ax-Crazy: Subverted. As prone to violence as he is, Grunt makes a point of saying that he requires meaning in his life, and seeks to challenge and fight strong enemies. Its the fighting and glory he's after, not the death.
- Badass Baritone: Just look at his voice actor.
- Badass Boast: "I don't need luck. I have ammo."
- During his Last Stand: "My turn, heh heh heh."
- Become a Real Boy: The goal to secure his loyalty.
- Beehive Barrier: His Fortification power.
- Big Eater: Overlaps with Extreme Omnivore. In the Citadel DLC for Mass Effect 3, some people try to coax their way in to Shepard's party with offers of food:
"Yes, I like pie, and no, you can't come in."
"You're selling cookies? Uh...well...no, I shouldn't let you in. Damn."
- Blood Knight: Even more so than normal for a krogan. Given the conditions on Tuchanka, with children and women deliberately separated from the fighting males, it's likely that he's had more exposure to the krogan warrior culture than usual for a krogan his developmental age.
- The Berserker: Eventually matures into a relatively stable (by krogan standards) blood knight.
- The Big Guy: Personality of a Class IV with the intelligence of a Class V. Definitely one of the strongest combat specialists. Just a wee bit unpredictable.
- Big Guy Fatality Syndrome: His mission in 3 is a perfect example of this, down to him saying "I'll hold them off," but it's subverted if you completed his Rite of Passage.
- Boisterous Bruiser: Any time there's a fight in the offing, Grunt will be all but jumping up and down with glee.
- Born as an Adult: Or a teenager, anyway — he's designed to look younger than other krogan (e.g, his head-crest hasn't merged into a single plate yet, his skin is lighter-colored than other krogan).
- Brutal Honesty: One of the most blunt and forward squad members, which can often be a source if unintentional comedy. For example, here's his reaction when stepping onto Tuchanka for the first time:
Grunt: This is the great krogan homeworld? This is the land of the Kregak, Shiagur, and Veeoll? This chunk of rock is barely even worth standing on! Never thought I'd miss the tank...
Grunt: Go away, asari slut.
- If Morinth tries to hit him up:
- Buffy Speak:
- When he talks, if it's not Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness, it's this.
Grunt: See, now we're having fun! Me remembering good deaths and you, with your... funny human thing.
- On getting into cover:
Grunt: We should hide behind... stuff.
- When he talks, if it's not Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness, it's this.
- Can't Hold His Liquor: If Shepard throws a wild party in the Citadel DLC, Grunt ends up passed out on the floor of his/her shower before the night is half over.
- Child Soldier: By krogan standards, but he revels in it.
- The Chosen One: Okeer created him to be a perfect krogan. Grunt eventually gets the mindset as well. The Urdnot Shaman seems to think this too, sending an email to Shepard demanding that s/he not get him/herself and Grunt killed.
- Cloning Blues: Somewhat. He stops angsting about it once he's accepted by other krogan.
- Coming-of-Age Story: His loyalty mission.
- Defeat Means Friendship: He tries to kill Shepard until he/she demonstrates his/her worthiness to command him.
- Does Not Like Spam: Doesn't like ramen, apparently, though he will eat almost damn near anything else—see below. By 3, particularly in the Citadel DLC, he seems to have acquired a taste for it as well.
Grunt: This what passes for food out here? My tastes run more along the lines of "edible". Looks like worms. Dead ones. This a Human thing? Ugh. I'll pass. I'll eat almost anything, but I stress 'almost'.
- Do Not Go Gentle: If he dies in 3, he's going out the way Krogan were meant to: in combat. He'll rack up a serious body count in the process too.
- Dummied Out: Audio files indicate he can get into an argument with Mordin once you have both their loyalties, although only the lines for regaining his or Mordin's loyalties are available.
- Enemies Equals Greatness: This is why he follows Shepard so loyally. Anyone who has made the kind of enemies that Shepard has made has earned his respect.
Grunt: This is why I follow you Shepard. BIG THINGS!
- Establishing Character Moment: Bursting out of his tank and demanding some kind of purpose to Shepard. Then giving a small laugh of amusement when Shepard either reveals s/he's been secretly holding a gun to Grunt's stomach all this time or actually shoots Grunt in the armor a few times to get him to back up.
- Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: His Shadow Broker dossier shows that he went on extranet searches for "Urdnot Wrex" to "tyrannosaurus wrex" to "Earth lizard wrex" to "dinosaurs". One can presume Grunt would have been all geared up to go test his mettle against such dangerous, deadly and massive creatures on Earth, only to be disappointed upon learning he was 65 million years too late.
- Good news for him: a dinosaur can be cloned. And krogan can ride them. Bad news? It's an Offscreen Moment of Awesome, and Grunt is not involved.
- Evil Laugh: When things are about to get/already are violent, he has this low-pitched slow "Heh heh heh" laugh, as if he is giddy with anticipation in his own little way at the prospect of a fight.
- Extreme Omnivore: Gets hungry at certain scenes of violence, to the disgust of his teammates. In Citadel he even ate a lamp while drunk.
Shepard: So... How were those noodles?
- Big Eater: The reason his "birthday celebration" in the Citadel comes to an end is because he got hungry and crashed near a noodle house allowing C-sec to catch him. The noodles he ate? Ramen.
Grunt: A little spicy.
Shepard: You're my hero./I love you, Grunt.
- Fantastic Racism: He hates turians, thanks to the tanks images.
- Foe-Tossing Charge: In the 3rd game, while his squad is pinned down, you get to watch him charge a Ravager, pick it up and throw it off a cliff.
- A short time later, he does it to cover Shepard's escape, killing half a dozen Ravagers in seconds before tackling one off a cliff. And if you have his loyalty? He survives it.
- Does this in his introduction, charging into Shepard full force and violently elbowing them into the wall by the neck. If it had been any human other than Shepard, they most certainly would have died.
- Genius Bruiser: He had the military knowledge of several krogan warlords imprinted into him while he was being created. He's also a fan of Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness, although he's rather young and doesn't always have the words he needs to describe things.
- And now, in Lair of the Shadow Broker, you find out he's reading (audiobook) Hemingway! He's finished The Old Man and The Sea & For Whom The Bell Tolls, and is working on The Sun Also Rises. Not a fan of A Farewell To Arms however.
- He also apparently loves dinosaurs; he was apparently doing an extranet search on Urdnot Wrex, when he encountered entries on Tyrannosaurus Rex - and that got him into looking into Earth dinosaurs. The Old Man and the Sea apparently also got him interested in sharks.
- He might possibly be an Otaku as he makes a Cowboy Bebop reference while drunk in the shower and might be a fan of that anime.note
- He also possibly makes a Harry Potter reference and might be a fan of the book series as he asks "are you a wizard" also while he was drunk in the shower. He most likely read the Harry Potter book series on audiobook.
- Note that his spelling isn't perfect. Logical, though — he was educated in a tank, and the Earth books he read were audiobooks.
- Grievous Harm with a Body: Uses pieces of the Reaper-enhanced Rachni as weapons while buying time for Shepard and the Rachni Queen to escape in 3.
- Hard Work Hardly Works: Every other teammate has gone through various forms of hell to be worthy of joining the team — Grunt is actually born in the Normandy SR-2's cargo bay ready to kick ass alongside them. He's actually kind of bothered by this, mourning his "thousand weaker brothers" who were sacrificed to make him an Uberkrogan.
- Heroic Sacrifice: In the third game. He stays behind to fight off the indoctrinated rachni and falls down a cliff with one. And, if he's loyal, it's subverted. As the team gets ready to head out to their next assignment, Grunt comes out, covered in rachni-husk blood, and asks a simple question:
- Hold the Line: In 3. Whether he survives or not depends on if you completed his loyalty mission.
- Incendiary Exponent: Mentioned, though not seen, in the Citadel DLC. During his drunken night out on the Citadel, he mentions that riot foam didn't stop him because he was on fire due to stealing a burning C-Sec squad car.
- Incredibly Lame Pun: "Turians, I guess you have to work the blade. I don't see much point to it, though." Beat "Heh, much point... oh, never mind."
- In Love with Your Carnage: He's very appreciative of Jack's escape from Purgatory if you take him with you, specifically the bodies she's leaving behind.
- The Knights Who Say "Squee!": Thinks highly of both Shepard and Wrex.
- Laser-Guided Tykebomb: Okeer created him to lead the krogan against his personal enemies. However, his "programming" failed and Grunt could not care less about Okeer's goals.
- Last Stand: In 3. Though he'll survive if loyal.
- Late to the Punchline: Grunt finally starts giggling when he figures out some his imprinted memories, like the image of a dead turian disfigured horribly (specifically, a krogan prying off the turian's face plates with a claw hammer). He thinks of it as hilarious because he "finally gets it": turians suck. When he tries to explain why it's funny, Shepard is nonplussed.
- Lightning Bruiser: The most durable squadmate, and with the Claymore shotgun, he deals out a ton of damage. Even capable of doing the infamous krogan charge. And the charge? If he does it to another krogan, he'll push them back. This includes the considerably larger warlord on his loyalty mission. Also, Scions.
- Lonely Piano Piece: During his Last Stand.
- Meaningful Name: Despite choosing his name for the fact it doesn't have any greater meaning, Grunt endures a lot in order to prove himself worthy of the respect of other krogan, who look down on him for the manner of his birth. In that respect, he does indeed start out as a Grunt.
- Murder Is the Best Solution: Blood Knight standard procedure.
- Neural Implanting: The "imprints" he was given by Okeer when he was being grown in the tank. This is how he knows how to breathe, walk, talk, and kick ass. Unfortunately, the imprints were often without context.
Grunt: Like holding a book for a child. Just "remember this," picture after picture. No help with finding a reason to care.
- Not in This for Your Revolution: Unlike most of the team (the other exceptions being Zaeed, Kasumi, and Jack, who are all paid mercenaries), he couldn't care less about saving people from the Collectors. He just wants a good fight.
- Not So Different: From Miranda. Both are genetically-engineered Super Soldiers who angst about not feeling as though they've earned their strength.
- One-Man Army: Specifically designed by Okeer to be a krogan "lance" as opposed to their regular horde-based tactics.
- If he's the only squadmate left to Hold the Line against the Collectors on the Suicide Mission, he can do so himself and come out alive.
- His Heroic Sacrifice in 3 has him going toe to toe with a small army of Reaper forces (including many Ravagers) to buy Shepard's team time to shuttle the Rachni Queen to safety. Assuming his loyalty was gained in the last game, he survives this stunt.
- Only Mostly Dead: In the third game, if you earned his loyalty. After said cliff-dive, he shows up just as the shuttle's about to leave, limping and covered in gallons of blood, but alive (and wondering if anyone has something to eat).
- Optional Party Member: While his recruitment mission is mandatory, you don't actually have to release him from his tank.
- Parental Substitute:
- Shepard, particularly Paragon Shepard, acts as one to him. Particularly in the Citadel DLC for 3, where Shepard has to bail him out with C-Sec after his wild night out on the Citadel.
Shepard: Grunt, you apologise to the nice man for setting his car on fire.
Grunt: Fine, I'm sorry for setting your car on fire...
[notices Shepard's look]
Grunt: ... and I won't do it again.note
- Wrex also takes a shine to Grunt and adopts him into clan Urdnot, with an attitude of almost grooming Grunt to take over as the leader of clan Urdnot when he dies.
- Shepard, particularly Paragon Shepard, acts as one to him. Particularly in the Citadel DLC for 3, where Shepard has to bail him out with C-Sec after his wild night out on the Citadel.
- Playing with Fire: He, like Jacob (and possibly Shepard) has regeneration-stopping Incendiary Ammo.
- Precocious Crush: Given his actual age and frequency to behave like a child, and some things he says about Liara in the Citadel DLC, he may have one of these on her.
- Proud Warrior Race Guy: Eventually. Being accepted into the Urdnot clan really heals his tattered ego.
- Psychopathic Man Child: Many of his mannerisms come across as rather child-like at times. He also plays with action figures on his spare time when he's not busy killing stuff, eating and reading Hemingway. Make sense since he's less than a year old. His actions in the Citadel DLC (and Paragon Shepard's response to them) also point in this direction.
- Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: I. AM. KROGAN!
- Really Was Born Yesterday: As stated, you essentially witness his birth when you release him from his tank.
- Replacement Goldfish: For his "father" Warlord Okeer, who was originally meant to be recruited on the Suicide Mission, but sacrificed himself to ensure Grunt's survival.
- Sealed Badass in a Can: He's tank-bred, so he was actually created in the "can" rather than being initially sealed in it. When his tank is obtained, it's left up to the player when to open the can and let the badass out. He even plays the "neutral" part of the trope straight; he doesn't care much about morality, only asskicking.
- Signature Laugh: Grunt's low, drawling "Heh...heh...heh".
- Sociopathic Hero: He couldn't care less about saving humanity. He just wants a good fight. And he laughs quite maniacally as he's tearing into your opponents. He gets better in 3, particularly if Wrex is the Urdnot leader.
Kelly Chambers: I don't know what to feel about Grunt. My psych reports were for Okeer. We have no guarantees that Grunt is mentally stable. I get the feeling he just doesn't care about anything, including who lives or dies.
- Smarter Than You Look: On top of being a krogan, a race not exactly known for its smarts, trailers made him seem quite basic in personality, but in fact he's conflicted, knowledgeable, and can talk with surprising eloquence on both these things and his frustration with the former.
- Smug Super: He was designed to be the perfect krogan and is very self-assured about this. Although, several conversations imply that deep down he doesn't really see him as such, leading him to overcompensate as a result.
- Stone Wall: He can become this if you level him right; maxing out his Fortification power and giving him the Krogan Pureblood power can increase his health and defenses to the point where he will almost never die, but he won't do as much damage.
- Super Soldier: Grown in a vat to be the "perfect" krogan.
- Part of his loyalty mission involves killing a Thresher Maw on foot. Alliance handbooks tell you to take on a Maw with a few tanks and even then: expect losses.
- Super Strength: Comes with being a krogan. His genetically inferior "brother" manages to lift a metal sheet◊ massing nearly four metric tons before we meet him, for comparison. This comes up in gameplay as well, as Grunt is one of only three members of the team who can use weapons with arm-breaking levels of recoil, like the Claymore. The others are Shepard and Legion.
- This Cannot Be!: If taken to the plague-infested part of Omega (Mordin's recruitment mission): "I do not get sick!"
- Took a Level in Badass: While he was always a terrifyingly effective fighter, his leadership skills improve massively between the second and third games. In the former, he's flagged as one of the poor choices for fireteam leader. In the latter, he ends up leading a multi-national squad of elite krogan soldiers, keeping them in line with a combination of good leadership and Asskicking Equals Authority.
- Trailers Always Spoil: The recruitment mission was clearly intended to make the player think they were getting Warlord Okeer as a squadmate. Getting Grunt instead was supposed to be a minor twist, but it was ruined by the pre-release trailer. Averted with Grunt's personality, however. Until the game was leaked, there was no indication that he was anything other than a typical krogan Blood Knight.
- Troll: Enjoys saying "no" to party crashers a little too much.
- Übermensch: He was created to be one, although he has little interest in it.
- Ultimate Life Form:
- Along with being the perfect warrior, this was what he was meant to be for the krogan species.
- If you kill the Thresher Maw as part of his Loyalty quest he becomes one of two Krogans in a thousand years to kill a Maw on foot. The other was Wrex (though Grunt, unlike Wrex, didn't do it on his own).
Grunt: I am pure krogan. You should be in awe.
- Undying Loyalty: Even before his mission, he seems to have nothing but respect for Shepard, his "Battlemaster". He even threatens Uvenk for spitting on Shepard's name. This is because he loves to fight, and Shepard brings him along to fight "BIG THINGS".
Grunt: Shepard is my battlemaster. S/he has no match.
- Unstoppable Rage: Constantly. Apparently this is the default state for his species. The Rite of Passage was devised simply to help teenage krogan get a handle on it — kind of like a young human's father taking him to a strip bar, except with guns and monsters. The sex comes afterward if a female is suitably impressed by the display. The Codex notes, however, that the rage only became so commonplace after the krogan devastated Tuchanka in nuclear war (before that, it was extremely rare and regarded as pathological). Admittedly, the Codex is an in-universe resource.
- Warrior Poet: According to the Shadow Broker's dossier on him, he's become a fan of Hemingway.
- Heck, even his dialogue from the beginning. His word choice is exquisite. This appears to be intentional on Okeer's part. Okeer similarly is surprisingly eloquent, even poetic, when speaking to Shepard upon their first meeting. It's entirely possible he programmed Grunt likewise.
- Weapon of Choice: While he's good with rifles and will use them when necessary, he seems to prefer shotguns. In 2, he's one of only two squadmates with a unique weapon: the Claymore heavy shotgun. In 3, he can be seen wielding an Eviscerator throughout the Rachni Caves mission.
- We Have Reserves: He was engineered by Okeer to be an aversion to this trope; were Okeer to cure the genophage, the krogan would go back to spawning like mad and covering the galaxy with their hordes. Okeer believes the true future of the krogan is to have superior, elite warriors rather than cannon fodder, hence why he made the Super Prototype, Grunt, and threw away the thousands that did not meet his standards.
- Worthy Opponent: One of the first indications that he views Shepard as one is the little smirk he gives when he realizes Shepard had quietly pulled a gun and had it trained on Grunt the entire time Grunt had him/her pinned against the wall.
Grunt: Hah! Offer one hand, but arm the other. Wise, Shepard.
- He comes to see the Collectors as this, stating that he "won't disrespect their strength by doing anything less than the worst to them."
- Younger Than He Looks: He's The Big Guy and a damned good one, but he's a Designer Krogan grown in a Krogan Jar and trained by Neural Implanting. You don't recruit him so much as "inherit" his Krogan Jar. When you crack it open and start chatting, you're basically witnessing his birth.
- You Shall Not Pass: During his mission in 3 — whether you choose to save his team or the rachni, he has to escort you out of the caves and hold off a wave of Ravagers. He survives if you completed his loyalty mission.
Jack, AKA Subject Zero, (nee Jennifer)
"I'm not saying anything about Jack. I'm not stupid."A powerful and unstable human biotic with a chequered past. Formerly a biotics test experiment of Cerberus. Romance option.
Voiced by: Courtenay Taylor
- Abnormal Ammo: She gains Warp Ammo after you earn her loyalty, which increases damage against armor, biotic barriers and health, and does double damage to anything under the effects of a biotic power, like Pull or Shockwave.
- Adult Fear: How did Cerberus get Jack as the primary test subject? It turns out that Jack's mother was approached by an agent posing as her doctor, informing her that Jack was dying of a dangerous illness and they needed to take her baby away for diagnostics. Her mother trusted the agent and handed over her child, never to see her again. With Jack's parents unaware of their child's current status, she was nonexistent to the entire world and Cerberus was free to subject her to inhumane tests.
- All Girls Want Bad Boys: Played with. She admires Renegade Shepard's bloodlust and cruelty, but the Renegade version of her romance is not treated as a serious thing by either one, but rather just a one-night stand. The Paragon romance with her is much more lasting and heartfelt.
- Ambiguously Bi: She mentions that one of the first criminals she ran with was a woman and her boyfriend who "shared their bed" with her. However, if you keep talking to her as female Shepard, she says she doesn't play for that club. The dialogue for both lines is pretty ambiguous, but then, she's a pretty messed up girl who might not have her own feelings straight.
- During the introductory cutscene to her loyalty mission, the camera seems to be focused on a female Shepherds while Kasumi is complimenting her dress while seemingly checking her out.
- In the Citadel DLC, she says she finds drunken Tali adorable, and says "If I were a little drunker and knew how to unzip that suit..." If the party takes a different turn, however, she gets pissed at the implication that her animosity with Miranda is just thinly-veiled sexual tension. She also tells Miranda that she has "fantastic tits".
- Anti-Hero: Strongly of the Nominal Hero kind. Shows signs of moving up the scale towards Pragmatic Hero with even a hint of a Knight in Sour Armor under the influence of Paragon Shepard. Lampshaded by her students, who lovingly call her "The Psychotic Biotic."
- And I Must Scream: If you don't rescue the students from Grissom Academy in Mass Effect 3 in time, Jack will end up being turned into a Phantom.
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Subverted. Her extensive list of crimes includes piracy, theft of a military craft, destruction of a space station, and vandalism. When asked, she clarifies that vandalism is what the hanar called it when she added a new crater to one of their moons by dropping the space station on it.
Jack: They really liked that moon.
- The Atoner: With some Freudian Excuse tossed in. It's not a coincidence she's happy being the teacher of biotic children, considering what the Teltin Facility was doing with biotic research.
- Ax-Crazy: Even Grunt and Zaeed are impressed with her bloodlust. She grows out of it, becoming more of a mild Blood Knight in 3. If captured by Cerberus however, she becomes this again, and this time irreversibly so.
- Badass Boast:
- One of her lines when a new wave of enemies come onto the field is "Hello, dead people!"
- Here's another: "If I die, I'm haunting you, Shepard."
- She also gets one from Warden Kuril, who refers to her fearfully as "The meanest handful of violence and hate I've ever encountered. Dangerous, crazy and very powerful."
- "I will destroy you!" would be this if the first game hadn't ruined this line for the players.
- Badass Biker: One of her alternate DLC outfits in 2. Her new look in 3 also gives off this image.
- Badass Teacher/Cool Teacher: In Mass Effect 3.
- Bald of Evil: Shaved her head for a cult, and kept it that way. While she's still a squadmate for you, she remains violent and generally psychopathic. By the third game, she's ascended to Bald of Awesome.
- Bald Women: Though she's growing her hair out by the third game. Well, sort of. Her hairstyle appears to be a mohawk with a ponytail.
- Bare Your Midriff: Jack bears a lot more than that. In her default appearance, the only thing around Jack's torso is a belt wrapped around her chest. In 3, she dresses in a similar manner, but also wears a small leather jacket with it.
- Bastard Girlfriend: If Shepard tries to romance and show he cares about her, she treats him like utter shit and snaps completely if she does drive him away, but ends up in perhaps the most touching romance scene if Shepard can persevere.
- Because You Can Cope: If you side with Miranda in the Jack/Miranda loyalty conflict, the "Intimidate" option for regaining Jack's loyalty has Shepard explain that Jack is tough when she's angry, and Shepard needs Jack's "edge." Besides, Jack would've reacted badly if Shepard had kissed her ass.
- Being Tortured Makes You Evil
- The Big Damn Kiss: If romanced, Shepard can kiss her at the end of their game together in the Arena, while an Atlas mech blows up in the background.
- The Big Guy: Not necessarily in physical size, but she definitely fits in personality.
- Blood Knight: She was conditioned to feel most alive while fighting, and it shows. Even after she Took a Level in Kindness in 3, she still clearly loves being in a fight.
- Bookends: You first meet her at a prison named Purgatory in Mass Effect 2. In Mass Effect 3, not counting the Citadel DLC, the last place you can interact with her is in a bar with the same name.
- Boxed Crook: You were originally just going to borrow her from max security space prison/slave ship to finish a mission, but certain events have left her quite a bit less constrained.
- Brainwashed and Crazy:
- She was given euphoric drugs as a kid while fighting to condition her to equate killing with pleasure.
- Will be programmed to fight for Cerberus if you don't do her ME3 quest; you fight her at the Cerberus base.
- Break His Heart to Save Him: If Shepard plays the Paragon route while trying to win her affection, then Jack tries to scare Shepard away to prevent them both from getting hurt. However, she grows fond of him if Shepard prevails anyway.
- Broken Bird: To say she's got issues is putting it lightly.
Jack: I feel like... I'm pissed off. I'm a dangerous bitch. But then, I'm a little girl again. Shit, it's complicated.
- Bruiser with a Soft Center: Thanks to some Character Development throughout the game, Jack can display a much more vulnerable side towards others while still enjoying kicking butt.
- Buffy Speak: If you bring her to the Collector ship.
Jack: I'm not gonna let [the Reapers] turn me into some fucked up... bug thing.
- Card-Carrying Villain: Pre-Character Development.
- Character Development: Her loyalty mission forces her to acknowledge that she wasn't the only biotic kid to suffer at that facility, as well as to accept the fact that the entire facility was built around her abilities in the first place. Depending on how you treat her, she can either stay a Dark Action Girl or show a softer side. This is shown in the two possible culminating scenes for a romance with her, one of which is just about sex, the other of which is far more tender.
- It's worth noting that while assaulting the Collector base, if you choose her to man the biotic barrier through the Seeker Swarm room and she's loyal, she'll refer to you as "Commander" like she means it. For as violently psychotic and unruly a character as Jack is, that's speaking volumes about her development under Shepard's command. More than that, she phrases the word Commander around appropriate statements. That is, instead of being snarky, she uses more short and to the point phrases that you'd expect from more disciplined crew members.
- There's also the Suicide Mission: if you choose to have her lead a team during it, her final words will be "Too many... tore me up. How'd you talk me into this? Heh... I wasn't supposed to care." Apparently, being around a Messianic Archetype long enough can make even Jack give a damn about everyone else.
- If she's still alive in 3, she's become a teacher with a very strong bond with her pupils, due mostly to Shepard's influence, thus sticking it to the Illusive Man by protecting biotics from people like him.
- Cluster F-Bomb:
- Constantly. In fact, she drops all but two or three of the game's F-bombs — mainly because she's the only character who uses the word in regular conversation.
- If you start to romance her and then push her away at the end (either to pursue a different partner or just For the Evulz), or if you side with Miranda in their conflict, all she will ever say to you from then on is, "Fuck off!"
- Toned down a bit in 3 when she becomes a teacher at Grissom. Gotta set a good example for the students, after all.
- Until Joker provokes her, that is. But see Curse Cut Short below.
- And in the Citadel DLC she's back in form.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: Subjected to it by Cerberus during her childhood, hence why she is the way she is.
- And if you don't save Grissom Academy in the third game, Cerberus captures her and inflicts this on her again, turning her into a Phantom that you will have to kill.
- Colony Drop/Deface of the Moon: She committed "vandalism" by smashing a space station into the hanar's favorite moon.
- Cooldown Hug: A romanced Shepard gives her one just when she starts breaking out in tears about how worried she is to lose him in Citadel.
- Curse Cut Short:
Jack: (to her students) Cover your ears, kids. (to Joker) Hey, Joker, f— [loading screen]
Jack: (responding to Joker's jab) Screw you, f... light lieutenant...
- Immediately before that:
- Cutscene Power to the Max: When she first appears, she tears through three YMIR mechs like they were made of wet cardboard. In normal gameplay, you're usually popping in and out of cover and gradually whittling them down and she's probably the weakest of any party member against them, since her two active powers, Shockwave and Pull, both have next to no effect on an YMIR.
- In Citadel she uses Shockwave to blow up an Atlas mech from across the arena. In actual gameplay, Shockwave has very short range and has very little effect on an Atlas' shields and armor.
- The Cynic: Given her past, it's not surprising. Paragon Shepard helps get her out of this a little bit and into Knight in Sour Armor territory, but it's a slow process.
- Dare to Be Badass: Her general tone to teaching her students in 3. Her lighthearted berating of her students does well to inspire them to succeed.
- Dark Action Girl: Becomes an Action Girl in 3.
- Dating Catwoman: Technically this is her romantic relationship with Paragon Shepard. She's an Ax-Crazy criminal and he's a Lawful Good Spectre.
- Death Glare: She's usually seen with an angry grimace when ready to kill.
- Death Seeker: Heavily implied during conversations with her in 2. Jack admits that she has no plan for the future other than crime sprees. In her own words death to her is like an 'on/off switch'. Of course, she snaps out of this if she lives to 3.
- Defrosting Ice Queen: She has a very hardened exterior and prefers to be alone. However, Shepard can reach out to her, helping her slowly regain her faith in life. Much more so if romanced.
- Destroy the Abusive Home: Her loyalty mission. Being Jack, she uses a bomb planted right in her old cell - and the explosion not only takes out the facility but a good chunk of the surrounding forest.
- Does Not Know How to Say "Thanks": Pre-Character Development.
- Does Not Like Men: Although she hates everyone, she seems to be wary towards men since she assumes All Men Are Perverts because of her Dark and Troubled Past. Shepard can coax her out of this if romanced.
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: Jack's pet from Mass Effect 3's Citadel DLC, Eezo the varren, is a short-tempered biotic animal that Jack had to rescue from an animal shelter. Initially it was extremely hostile, but Jack showed it lots of love, patience and trust, and now while it's still badass, it's become a "big softie" at heart. Shepard can see the parallels, but Jack apparently can't.
- The Dreaded: Shepard and Miranda are the only people to consistently be unwary of Jack. The rest of the team (this being an entire Badass Crew mind you) will occasionally mention being uncomfortable or worried about her snapping. During her recruitment from Purgatory, an innmate will request to be bought as a slave for freedom, it being a corrupt prison ship where prisoners are beaten frequently (implied sometimes to death). He immediately rescinds the request after finding out you're leaving with Jack, stressing that being around her is the more dangerous option.
- Drill Sergeant Nasty: As one of Grissom Academy's instructors in the final game. Remarkably, she gets high praise and respect from both her students and superiors for it. She's a little milder than some examples, though; she admits to Shepard that the students are like her family and they need her to believe in them, and puts up with it when they cheerfully mock her.
- Embarrassing Tattoo: If romanced by Shepard, she jokes in 3 that she's gotten an N7 tattoo on her ass.
- Enemy Mine: Puts her hatred towards Cerberus aside since they both have a common enemy.
- Establishing Character Moment: When she's released from cryo-stasis, Shepard's team is shocked that the Jack they've been hearing so much about is actually a small young woman. She proceeds to awaken and destroy three YMIR Mechs and then start tearing up the station.
- Even Evil Has Standards: She is slightly troubled by Shepard urging Niftu Cal, the "Biotic God," to get himself killed, even though she admits it was kind of funny.
Jack: That was mean... but damn funny.
- Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: She questions why Shepard cares for her and fails to know why s/he risks everything to save the galaxy. However, she gets better because of Shepard's heroics.
- Evil Counterpart: While not pure evil, she's basically a dark reflection of Kaidan Alenko from the first game. Only replace the Alliance-run BaAT bootcamp with a rogue Cerberus facility, being surrounded by friends with solitary confinement, where the other children are afraid of you, and the grueling training with surgical experimentation and outright torture.
- Evil Feels Good: At least that's what she would most likely tell you. And it turns out that she was conditioned to feel that way.
Jack: I still get warm feelings during a fight.
- Evil Is Petty: Her fight with Miranda in a nutshell. Cold as Miranda acts, Jack was still looking for a fight there and was only causing trouble because she wanted to hear Miranda admit that what Cerberus did to her was wrong. And if Shepard chooses not to take her side, you lose her loyalty (though the same is also true of Miranda if you side with Jack). Granted, Jack had a more justifiable reason to be offended, as Miranda's loyalty had nothing to do with her allegiance to Cerberus anyway.
- Exposed to the Elements: Jack wears stripperiffic outfits in space.
- Expository Hairstyle Change: You see her again in Mass Effect 3 with her hair on top grown out long enough for a short pony tail. She still keeps her temples shaved.
- Fantastic Drug: Red sand in dummied-out content.
- Fluffy Tamer: Shows up with a biotic varren from Thessia in the Citadel DLC.
- For the Evulz: Her motivation a lot of the time. She grows out of it.
- Freaky Is Cool: She doesn't understand why Paragon Shepard wants to form a romantic relationship with her, but admits the idea is intriguing.
Jack: (Smiling) You're weird Shepard. That kinda gets me off.
- Freudian Excuse/Monster Sob Story: She's got a particularly dark and grisly one for her backstory that explains her bloodlust and extremely antisocial nature. And also her Roaring Rampage of Revenge against Cerberus.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: Started out as a normal little girl. Years of being tortured and used has turned her into one of the galaxy's most notorious criminals.
- Gender-Blender Name: Lampshaded when she is first seen, and then never mentioned again. Subverted, however, by her real name, Jennifer.
- Glass Cannon: She's very powerful offensively, but she's very frail in combat, second only to Kasumi.
- Gone Horribly Right: Cerberus got what they wanted.
- Good Feels Good: She starts to succumb to this after her Heel–Face Turn. Teaching biotic kids like her really makes her understand why good feels better than evil.
- Good People Have Good Sex: If successfully romanced by Paragon Shepard, she becomes a firm believer of this trope. Throughout 3, she casually remarks about wanting to have sex with Shepard a lot.
- Good Scars, Evil Scars: The tattoos mask them from a distance, but she's covered in surgical scars from Teltin.
Jack: You see the scars, Rodriguez? Come on, take a good look. Cerberus did this to me when I was half your age.
- Goth: Thinks very little of herself? Check. Cynical? Check. Loves deep, emotional poetry? Check. Full of emotional scars? Check. An admiration for death? Check. Wears pale makeup and black eyeliner? Check. Covered in beautiful tattoos that reflect her inner pain? Check. Hell-Bent for Leather? Check. Feared for being a loner? Check.
- Goth Girls Know Magic: Jack shows shades of being a Goth with her penchant for leather clothing and her personality fitting the Lone Psycho type. She's also the most powerful human biotic in the The Verse.
- Heel–Face Turn: A very gradual process that isn't fully completed until after 2.
- Hell-Bent for Leather: Both her loyalty and alternate Badass Biker DLC outfit in 2.
- Wears a studded leather jacket in her new job as a Badass Teacher in 3. According to Kahlee Sanders, it's as far as Jack is willing to compromise on the dress-code required for Grissom Academy's faculty members.
- Hidden Buxom: That strap Jack has covering her chest on her default appearance is actually used as a constrictor binding her breasts to make them appear small because she doesn't like men checking her out. Ironically, not much is covered up since she doesn't wear a shirt. But, her appearance in 3 shows Jack's full endowment.
- Hidden Depths: A Paragon Shep will peel away her layers, and even her voice will reflect this, as it goes from rough and masculine to soft and feminine by the time a romance is completed. At the end of the game, if she survives, no matter what her loyalty is, she'll give Shepard a determined nod, which is tantamount to a salute — and this was a woman who had no interest in anything or anyone but herself.
- The Shadow Broker DLC also reveals that she writes poetry in her spare time under the pseudonym "Jacqueline Nought".
- Hideous Hangover Cure: Averted. She reveals in the Citadel DLC thanks to her conditioning, she never feels any sort of morning-after hangover effects. She's exercising when she's first met up with after the party.
- Incompletely Trained: The Pragia facility was shut down long before they could finish. With no one to fill in the gaps in her biotic abilities, Jack trained herself to use weapons instead.
- I Need a Freaking Drink: In the Citadel DLC, if Shepard suggests to Jack that she and Miranda should kiss and make up.
- In Love with Your Carnage: Summed up in this borderline Adorkable line from the Citadel DLC:
Jack: [after blowing up an Atlas mech] If there's a God, that's what she sounds like. Just a big, deep "BWOOM!" to let you know everything's gonna be okay.
- Institutional Apparel: Her starting outfit is the remains of her Purgatory uniform.
- Intimate Marks: Everything below the neck is covered in ink, including her breasts.
- In-Universe Catharsis: Pretty much the entire point of her loyalty mission. The achievement for gaining her loyalty is even called "Catharsis."
- I Reject Your Reality: Despite the overwhelming evidence, she still refuses to believe that the Teltin facility's sole cause was to make her into what she is, and that she didn't survive solely because she was stronger than the rest.
- I "Uh" You, Too: Despite being in love with Shepard, she never says she is.
- Jerkass: Pre-Character Development, and she knows it.
- Jerkass Has a Point: Her suspicions about Cerberus eventually betraying her and Shepard are proven correct in the end. By 3, the Illusive Man is revealed to have been manipulating Shepard to serve his own purposes the whole time.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: In 3.
- Kaleidoscope Eyes: In ME3, her eyes turn blue when she uses her biotics.
- Kick the Dog: A favorite past-time of hers pre Character Development, including but not limited to mass murder, destroying a moon, being a Jerkass, and being such a Troll that she's been banned from the extranet (among other places) several times. And most of this behavior is done For the Evulz.
- Lack of Empathy: Initially. She gets better.
- The Lad-ette: Her behavior isn't even remotely feminine.
- Lady Swears-a-Lot: In ME3, Joker asks if she has a swear jar, because emptying it would buy another cruiser.
- Last Girl Wins: MaleShep meets her last out of the women who give the Paramour achievement.
- Last-Second Word Swap: At the end of the Grissom Academy mission.
Jack: Screw you, f—flight lieutenant.
Joker: Uhh, what the hell was that?
- Lean and Mean: For such a small woman, Jack is very strong and cruel to others. This changes after her Heel–Face Turn...somewhat.
- Loners Are Freaks: Likes to be alone in an isolated part under the ship. Shepard has the option to visit her though and can convince her to bond with others. By 3, she does.
- Loveable Sex Maniac: In the Citadel DLC if you romance her. If you dance with her, she asks you to not tire yourself out because "We're gonna be doing it on the table later". The morning after she says she's horny, but contemplate that other people are already awake. She also makes several comments on Miranda's figure.
Jack: You as turned on as I am right now?Shepard: (Confused) You want to have sex in the combat simulator?Jack: (Mischievously) No...I wanna make love.
- Love Is a Weakness: Initially believes in this, but Paragon Shepard can convince her otherwise if romanced.
- Love Redeems: The Paragon ending to her romance.
- Male Gaze: Although not as much as Miranda, she still has it. When Shepard asks about her tattoos, the camera pans all over across her torso, with a close-up shot of her breasts. She even assumes Male Shepard is checking her out.
- Mama Bear: Towards the students of Grissom Academy.
- Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: Her relationship with Male Paragon Shepard, especially if romanced. She's the tough-as-nails, murderous criminal while he's the All-Loving Hero.
- Meaningful Name: Presumably inspired by Jack London, who's famously quoted from Call of the Wild: "Kill or be killed, eat or be eaten, was the law; and this mandate, down out of the depths of Time, he obeyed." Also like London, Jack became quite the traveler.
- Megaton Punch: She's fond of using biotics to create these.
- Mildly Military: From the sound of things, she has some manner of provisional officer's rank in the Alliance Navy, judging from banter with Joker, and the fact that she's administrating her students' operations once they go into the field. Although it's given her purpose, she's still Jack, as most readily evidenced by her choice of attire.
- Mind over Matter: Considered to be the most powerful human biotic.
- Mini-Boss: If you don't do the Grissom Academy mission before a set time, or not at all, she gets indoctrinated and works for Cerberus, becoming a mini-boss in the Cerberus HQ.
- Morality Chain: Paragon Shepard becomes this to her. Acknowledged in 3 when she notes that some of Shepard's speeches rubbed off on her. Even she seems a little surprised by this.
- Ms.Fanservice: Although not quite to the extent of Miranda, Jack is sporting more revealing clothing than she is. For starters, Jack doesn't wear a shirt in her default appearance, exposing most of her chest and upper body.
- Murder Is the Best Solution: As should be obvious by this point.
Shepard: What is it about killing that fascinates you so much?
Jack: I figure every time someone dies and it's not me, my chances of survival go up. Simple.
- My Eyes Are Up Here: When Male Shepard talks with her frequently, she assumes that he's checking her out and wants to use her for sex.
- My Hero Zero: She's a hero called Subject Zero. But, don't call her that nickname.
- Mythology Gag:
- She sometimes screams I WILL DESTROY YOU! in the same way the human biotic mooks did in Mass Effect.
- Mocked by Rodriguez in ME3
Rodriguez: I will destroy you!
Jack: Drink your juice, Rodriguez. You couldn't destroy wet tissue paper.
- Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Inverted. Also, it would be too late for you to run anyway.
- The Nicknamer: Refers to Miranda as "the Cheerleader" and Paragon Shepard as "King of the Boy Scouts" or "Queen of the Girl Scouts" depending on his/her gender.
- Noodle Incident: While it doesn't get nearly as much attention due to being brought up in the same conversation as the "vandalism incident," all she says about stealing a military craft is, "Shouldn't have left the thing unlocked. Besides, parades are boring. I helped."
- Not So Above It All: The most notorious, dangerous human criminal in the galaxy likes to write poetry and troll people on the internet.
- Not So Different: From Miranda. Both are powerful biotic women with potential for greatness who had their gifts turned into curses by others (Miranda's father and Cerberus respectively) and the ensuing traumatic childhoods has made them both cold, bitter, and ruthless until when or if Shepard gets them to move past their pain and become happier (and better) people. Sadly, all of these similarities are lost on them both.
- Odd Friendship: Particularly with a Paragon Shepard, who she sarcastically refers to as "King/Queen of the Boy/Girl Scouts" in the third game. Nonetheless, it's clear that Jack owes a lot of her character development to Shepard's influence and she admits that all their speeches clearly rubbed off on her.
- The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: Judging by the confrontation between them, she seems to think this way about Miranda; she says she'll keep Miranda alive so she can tear her apart herself after the mission. Fortunately, she buries the hatchet with her later.
- Person of Mass Destruction: And she revels in it.
- Pet the Dog: Jack does have a few nice moments of kindness in the series.
- During her loyalty mission, Shepard can convince her to spare Aresh's life instead of killing him.
- In Grissom Academy, she saves the life of Rodriguez, the student she picks on the most, from Cerberus troops.
- In the Citadel DLC, she adopts an abandoned varren to keep as a pet.
- Her whole romance can be seen as this towards Paragon Shepard, since she was initially hostile towards him, but gave him a chance after he was so kind to her when he had no reason not to.
- Power Perversion Potential: Biotic powers can be unstable during the act, but can also have "benefits." Mordin, as always, is the man to see.
- Psycho for Hire: An incredibly rare protagonist example. She may develop beyond this if you gain her loyalty.
- Rape as Backstory: It says something about her past when the multiple times she's been sexually assaulted count as some of the least traumatic memories.
- It's a Crowning Moment of Heartwarming that if the player remains romantically interested in Jack, she'll openly kiss him in front of everyone, even her students, no longer afraid to show open affection.
- Retired Monster: Though she ultimately becomes a genuinely good person, she also never regrets any of her past misdeeds, including murdering dozens of people with little justification and crashing a space station into a moon.
- Reforged into a Minion: If you skip Grissom Academy, she's captured and turned into a Cerberus Phantom.
- The Reveal: Taking Liara along to Grissom Academy in 3 reveals that Jack's birth-name is actually Jennifer, though Liara hasn't been able to discover her surname yet.
- Revenge Before Reason: On her loyalty mission, Shepard has the option to point out that Jack's quest for vengeance is tearing her apart, making her more unstable than before. Jack eventually realizes this, and intends to control herself more often.
- Revenge by Proxy: A variation. Jack snipes at Miranda a lot, (leading to quite a bit of animosity between them) likely because Miranda (being a Cerberus agent) is the easiest and most convenient outlet for her rage, even though Miranda wasn't even with Cerberus when they tortured Jack for years. She also takes issue with Miranda's "cheerleading" and excuses for the things Cerberus has done, including Pragia.
- The Rival: To Miranda, complete with an The Only One Allowed to Defeat You mentality. This reaches its peak in during a catfight that Shepard has to head off, possibly also losing the loyalty of one or the other. Fortunately, as of the Citadel DLC, they've smoothed things over a bit.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Apparently a recurring event for her. You add her to the crew right after she finishes one of these. And you get her loyalty by blowing up the facility that made her who she is.
- Samus Is a Girl: Basically, everyone, including the Warden holding her in cryo, shudder at the very mention of her and portray her as the ultimate force of destruction... and then you see this apparently small young woman break out of metal restraints and wipe out three heavy mechs with nothing but her biotics.
Grunt: That's Jack? Jack is tiny. [Jack starts wrecking the place] Let's get down there, I wanna see!
- Satisfied Street Rat: Although she's hardly "satisfied" unless she's in a fight. Not only that, but she is extremely pissed off at Cerberus for using her as a lab rat; while Shep can say "You enjoy the power they gave you," she's damn sore that "they didn't give (her) a choice".
- Sex Equals Love:
- Averted. Kelly mentions that Jack pushes people away, but approaches sex casually, and warns that having a one-night stand with her is a bad idea. Having sex with Jack is an option fairly early into the game. If the casual sex option is chosen, she's really into it, but says that she doesn't want to play if you try and talk to her again. If you refuse sex with her and show interest in her as a person, she'll eventually come out of her shell and begin to actually love Shepard.
- During the final love scene between Jack and Shepard in 2, they don't have sex. Rather, Jack snuggles with Shepard contently. Considering her Rape as Backstory, she probably needs affection more than sex.
- "Shut Up" Kiss: On the receiving end if Shepard romanced her when the Grissom Academy mission finishes. Shep grabs and kisses her before she gives too many details about her "N7 Tattoo".
- Single Woman Seeks Good Man: She may be the Trope Codifier for this. If Paragon Shepard drops hints of romantic interest in her, then Jack will develop a serious crush on him. Although Jack does admire Renegade Shepard, she ends up falling in love with Paragon Shepard because of his kindness and real love for her. She even gets an N7 tattoo to remember him.
- Slap-Slap-Kiss: If romanced in 2, the first thing she does to Shepard in 3 is deck him. note Then give him a passionate kiss.
- Slasher Smile: She enjoys fighting a lot.
- Sociopathic Hero: "Heroic" is very much a stretch for her. At first.
- So Proud of You: Some cut content from 3's endgame includes her reassuring her squad.
- Stealth Pun: She once used "Jacqueline Nought" as an alias, with "nought" being the British term for the American "zero." So she is "Jack Zero". If she died in 2, this is her listed name on the Normandy cenotaph.
- Stern Teacher: She's tough on her students and receives their adoration in return. A bit crazier than most examples though.
- Stripperiffic: Her first costume is essentially a strap across her breasts and a pair of pants; her alternate costume is a bit more modest. In Citadel she explains that it was a deliberate attempt to make her breasts look as small as possible, since showing off her rack in a prison ship would have been a bad idea.
- The third DLC outfit makes her a Badass Biker with a leather jacket, pants and shades, so everything is hidden, including tattoos.
- Her outfit in 3 is more conservative, but it still shows quite a lot of skin.
- Super Soldier: Cerberus wanted to make her a powerful biotic warrior... and they succeeded.
- Survivor Guilt: One of the reasons she pushes everyone away is that the last person who cared about her ended up dying in order to save her instead of betraying her as she'd expected he would. This made her even more violent and reclusive.
- Can get taken Up to Eleven in 3. If you chose to send her students to the front lines and romanced her, by the end, they'll all be dead as shall Shepard (in most endings). After all her major character development, everyone closest to her still dies.
- Tattoo as Character Type: They're a way to reassert control over her body and remind her of the colorful life she's led since since escaping Pragia.
- Tattooed Crook: Up to Eleven. The art book shows just how much detail and thought went into them, including tally marks for people she’s killed, including a skeleton tattoo with marks over each bone she killed a person by breaking. Needless to say, she's got a lot of tally marks.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: With everyone in 2, but especially Miranda.
- There Was a Door: Justified: After being released from cryo, she has to escape somehow, and the quickest way is to break through walls with her biotics.
- This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!: Quite a few of her battle cries. She's fond of the B-word in conversation as well.
- Token Evil Teammate: Even after recruitment, she remains a barely contained ball of homicidal rage. She can grow out of it eventually.
- Tomboyish Name Though in the third game, Liara reveals that her real birth name is Jennifer.
- Tomboy with a Girly Streak: She enjoys reading and writing poetry in her spare time. Her romance shows this off more though. As her interest grows in Paragon Shepard, her voice changes from rough and masculine to a gentler, caring tone.
(First conversation)Shepard: I should go.Jack: Yep.(After dropping hints of romance)Shepard: I should go.Jack: Take care!
- Tomboyish Ponytail: Sports one in Mass Effect 3.
- Took a Level in Cheerfulness: She becomes much happier in 3 after her Heel–Face Turn.
- Took a Level in Kindness: A bit in 2, much more if romanced. Quite a bit in 3, where she's become a full-fledged Mama Bear and Badass Teacher who has left her Ax-Crazy nature behind. The Citadel DLC takes it even further, showing her to now have a pet biotic varren named Eezo that she got from a rescue group who she is extremely affectionate towards (and the parallels to her own life she is completely oblivious about). She also no longer wants to kill Miranda.
- Trailers Always Spoil: Within the game, all you're told is that you're picking up a dangerous biotic named Jack; it's left as a surprise that she's a female until you see her the first time. The surprise is completely ruined by the fact that the character was introduced in promotional material prior to the game's release, including a personal character trailer. Although her name is only given as "Subject Zero" in this material, enough detail is given about how she's recruited that the only way her sex can come as a surprise is if the player goes into the game completely blind.
- Transhuman: Possibly the most powerful human biotic yet.
- Troll: She was banned from the Citadel News Net forums for excessive and repeated swearing, derogatory comments, inflammatory comments, and circumventing work-safe filters. She lasted 15 minutes in an online poker community before being banned for the same reasons.
- She also gets vanned a lot. You are actually supposed to get her out of the proverbial space van in her recruit mission.
- Tsundere: If Shepard coaxes her out of her hostility and helps her find some personal closure, she displays a softer and more vulnerable side.
- Tykebomb: The Shadow Broker's dossier indicates she was actually taken by Cerberus shortly after birth. Her mother was convinced the child had died from horrible element zero-induced seizures.
- The Unfettered: Gets better in 3.
- Ungrateful Bitch: In her recruitment mission, Shepard not only frees her, but saves her by shooting a Blue Suns trooper just before he shot Jack. Her response is to loudly insult Shepard.
Shepard: This ship's going down in flames. I've got the only way out. I'm offering to take you with me. And you're arguing.
- Unreliable Narrator: She wasn't in the best position to figure out just what was going on in the Teltin facility.
- Unskilled, but Strong: She is skilled in throwing out various biotic techniques, but is one of the few squadmates in the series to lack formal military or paramilitary training of any kind (outside of the experimentation and abuse she endured as a child) meaning she can get quite easily taken down if outmaneuvered by enemies, both in and out of gameplay. Her very first scene showcases this quite well: she tears through three YMIR Mechs with one super-charged-up biotic blast at the beginning of the mission, but near the end drops her guard and would have been killed by a surprise attack from a single mook if not for a quick Stab the Scorpion moment on Shepard's part.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: With Miranda in the Citadel DLC, for given value of "best buds".
- We Can Rule Together: In her first conversation with Shepard, she suggests the two of them team up to take over the Normandy and pirate other ships in order to conquer the universe as partners in crime.
- What Could Have Been: A cut sidequest in ME2 originally had Shepard forced to find some red sand for Jack, due the fact that Cerberus experimentation meant that red sand was the only thing that could help her sleep without levitating everything in the room.
- What Is This Thing You Call "Love"?: Downplayed, but still present. Jack doesn't understand what real love actually is, only understanding that people have sex to get what they want. She questions why a romancing Shepard doesn't just do it with her and is confused when he wants to bond with her. She eventually realizes her true feelings for him if Shepard remains faithful to pursuing a true romance with her.
- What the Hell, Hero?: In the third game, she punches Shepard in the face, saying that Shepard should never have trusted Cerberus. If you romanced her, it turns into Anger Born of Worry, as she punches Shepard for turning him/herself in after the events of Arrival.
- What Would X Do?: If she survives the second game and you make it to Grissom Academy in time in the third, you'll find her teaching a batch of young biotics and defending them from Cerberus. She even admits that some of Shepard's leadership rubbed off on her, what with "all those damn speeches."
- When She Smiles: If romanced successfully by Paragon Shepard, she finally shows real happiness. Not a Slasher Smile, but a genuine smile.
- Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Because seriously — after a life of physical torture, emotional, and sexual abuse, Jack really deserves a little bit of happiness. And a Shepard hug.
- You Are Better Than You Think You Are: How Paragon Shepard prompts her Heel–Face Turn.
- You Need to Get Laid: Inverted; see Sex Equals Love above.
- Your Makeup Is Running: During her romance scene.
"Jacob is way too nice a guy for the number of ways he knows how to kill people."A biotic and former marine who joined Cerberus to protect humanity, although he dislikes their extreme methods. He's also the protagonist of the iPhone game Mass Effect Galaxy. Also one of ME2's romance options for the female Shepard.
Voiced by: Adam Lazarre-White
- Absence Makes the Heart Go Yonder: He and Dr Brynn Cole are together in 3 whether or not you romanced him.
- Anti-Hero: Either a Knight in Sour Armor or Pragmatic Hero.
- The Atoner: In 3 for his time with Cerberus.
- Bald of Awesome: In his younger years.
- Badass Beard: Grew one after Galaxy.
- Beware the Nice Ones: One of the most non-confrontational, baggage-deprived guys on your squad, but check out his loyalty mission's Renegade ending for what he's capable of when pushed.
- Black Dude Dies First: Potentially. He does volunteer for an assignment he's not geared towards, but it's possible to have already lost up to three people at that point. It really comes down to the player.
- Broken Pedestal: His father.
- Brutal Honesty: Similar to Ashley, Jacob is fairly direct with his opinions when asked. This will extend to Shepard as well.
- Calling the Old Man Out: Was pretty pissed to find out what his father had been doing for the past 10 years.
- Canon Immigrant: From Mass Effect Galaxy.
- Chick Magnet: He's had a past history with Miranda, Kasumi totally digs him, and he can possibly romance a Female Shepard. Continues into the third game, where he has a new girlfriend regardless of whether he was with Shepard in the previous game or not.
- Deadpan Snarker: He has his moments, particularly in the Citadel DLC where he effortlessly trades banter with Shepard and ribs him/her quite a bit.
- Demoted to Extra: Went from being the main character of Mass Effect Galaxy to a party member in Mass Effect 2 to an NPC in an optional mission in Mass Effect 3.
- Derailing Love Interests: In 3, if you previously romanced him, he's already moved on to another woman he plans to settle down with.
- Determinator: Early in his mission in 3, Jacob gets shot in the stomach protecting some Ex-Cerberus Scientists. While he gets briefly treated, Jacob continues to power through the mission while injured.
Shepard: You should get that wound looked at.
Jacob: I'm good. I mean, I will.
- Disappeared Dad: For 10 years and counting... at least, until his loyalty mission.
- Dogged Nice Guy: Inverted — female Shepard has to work to get him to open up to the possibility of a romance.
- Don't You Dare Pity Me!: He doesn't want anyone thinking of him as a "baggage guy" or trying to "figure me out". You can actually convince him to break off the romance if you keep pushing him.
Jacob: Even if you were right, how small would my problems be if you could 'fix' them with grad-school psych and a crying jag?"
- Disappointed by the Motive: In his loyalty mission, Jacob isn't disappointed as he is outraged over the fact that his father spent 10 years on a remote planet, indulging in what he calls "a juvenile fantasy."
- Everyone Has Standards: Dislikes mercenaries and assassins, which causes some initial friction when Thane comes aboard.
- Female Gaze: There's a point early in the romance in which the camera seems to switch to Shepard's POV, and pans up from his groin to his face.
- Forgot About His Powers: A relatively minor example in 3: He still handles guns well when Cerberus attacks the defectors' safehouse, but apparently completely forgets he has biotic powers, specifically Barrier, which would have prevented him from receiving the wound that puts him out of action for most of the mission.
- The Generic Guy: While intended to be the Only Sane Man in the second game, many think of him as simply uninteresting in comparison to the others.
- The Heart: Jacob and Miranda serve as the foils/voice-of-reason towards Shepard. Jacob generally supports actions that tend to be morally right, and is the paragon-voice point.
- Hero of Another Story: Literally, with Mass Effect Galaxy. This put him in the rare position of a previous player character stuck as second-fiddle to another one.
- Hidden Depths: Apparently he's good at arcade games if the Citadel DLC is anything to go by.
- I Can't Believe a Guy Like You Would Notice Me: He seems rather surprised when female Shepard tries to start a romance with him, but eventually runs with it.
- I Have No Son: Inverted. He disowns his father after discovering what he did.
Jacob: I don't know who you are, because you're no father that I remember.
- I'll Pretend I Didn't Hear That: When Grunt starts talking about how appetizing the smell of burning plague victims is.
- Insecure Love Interest: With both Shepard and Miranda, he doesn't believe he's good enough for them.
- I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Implies this towards Miranda. "She... requires a better man than I."
- Knight in Sour Armor: He's generally a nice guy, but displays a lot of cynicism regarding the Alliance and Citadel governments after the events of Mass Effect Galaxy which led him to join Cerberus in disgust. Not that he's altogether fond of them, either.
"Saved the Citadel, but... what's the saying? A good deed's like pissing in dark pants. Warm feeling, but no one notices."
- The Knights Who Say "Squee!": He's a bit of a Shepard Fanboy.
- The Lancer: A position he shares with Garrus and Miranda, hence why he and they are the only ideal candidates for leading the fireteams on the Suicide Mission.
- Leave Behind a Pistol: At the end of his loyalty mission, the Renegade conclusion is to give a gun to his father to kill himself rather than face a court-martial or be killed by males driven to violence by the local flora.
- Magic Knight: Both a capable soldier and a powerful biotic.
- Man Hug: How he assures Shepard he's ready to go post-loyalty mission.
Jacob: I'm good, Shepard! Ready for anything. We live, we'll get loud, spill some drinks on the Citadel!
- Military Maverick: He left the Alliance because he couldn't handle all the Obstructive Bureaucrats. Having said that, he also gets the prize for the other half of the trope: of all the party members, he holds himself to the strongest level of military behavior, and is the only person on the ship aside from Kelly (and a loyal Miranda, once if not romanced) who actually salutes Shepard.
- Mind over Matter: Jacob is the closest Shepard's squad gets to an average human biotic.
- Mr. Exposition: Early in 2. Justified because he's the only person around Shepard can talk to, and Shep's been dead for two years.
- Mr. Fanservice: Why, hello there, Mr. Unneccessary In Camera Focus Shirt Removal Ripped Guy. His abs are rendered with more detail than some character's faces. Shadow Broker info shows that he's earned those abs with an insane workout schedule. His taut ass is also prominent in some shots (the same camera angle as Miranda's Ass Cam, no less).
- Nice Guy: One of the nicest members of Cerberus Shepard meets.
- Not So Different:
- If a female Shepard who romanced him calls him out on leaving her during the Citadel DLC, he'll say that maybe he's not so different from his father after all.
- Additionally, if Shepard romanced someone before him, Jacob will call Shepard out on the previous relationship she'd abandoned.
- Oblivious to Love: Not only does Shepard pretty much have to explicitly state her interest in him for it to register, but, by all accounts, he also doesn't seem to realize that Kasumi wants to jump his bones. Of course, since she's a downloadable character, he has no dialog related to her so it's hard to tell.
- Only Sane Man: The Illusive Man placed him on Shepard's team for relative emotional stability as much as skill.
- Platonic Life Partners: With Miranda and a Female Shepard who befriends him but doesn't romance him.
- Playing with Fire: Aside from Grunt and Shepard themselves, he's the only one with Incendiary Ammo.
- Precision F-Strike: An "S-Strike", to be more accurate. Shortly after the cutscene where Shepard releases Jack from cryo, as the squad enters a wrecked room with a few Blue Suns enemies fighting off escaped prisoners, Jacob will blurt out "Holy shit!" in face of all the chaos and destruction.
- Privateer: A former member of the Corsairs, a black ops unit that the Alliance could disavow knowledge of if they were caught.
- Shell-Shocked Veteran: Bring him along to the Derelict Reaper and you'll learn that he hasn't gotten over Eden Prime as much you initially thought. During the Citadel party, he'll mention that he still has nightmares about the Collector base.
- Static Character: His character changes the least throughout the story. This is deliberate; he's supposed to be the most emotionally-stable crew member. Everyone else's loyalty mission involves some form of baggage from their past, while Jacob has to actually be brought into his loyalty mission by an outside actor.
- The Stoic: He tends to express less emotion than most of the characters.
- That Man Is Dead: His opinion of Ronald Taylor; no matter how the mission plays out, you'll hear some variation of it. "I've already mourned the man he used to be."
- Token Good Teammate: Of Cerberus along with some of the Normandy crew (including Kelly) and, to a lesser extent, Miranda. And he knows it.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: In 3, if romanced previously he is shown to have cheated on a Shepard with Dr. Cole in the six months they were incarcerated. Even he admits he was a bastard for doing so if Shepard chooses to call him on it (though in a fairly casual manner).
- Transhuman: Par for the course when one is able to project mass effect fields from your body.
- "Well Done, Son!" Guy: He does a good job of not showing it, though.
- What the Hell, Hero?: It's downplayed, but he'll show discomfort if you go out of your way to be vindictive (even if the "victim" is an intel trader who once sent Jacob into an ambush). Played for laughs in the Citadel DLC; pick James's side in the "physique vs biotics" argument, and he'll call it the first questionable decision he's ever seen you make.
- What You Are in the Dark: His backstory is full of this. He doesn't mind so much.
Jacob: Good deed's like pissing yourself in dark pants. Warm feeling, but no one notices.
- Working with the Ex: In his words, his previous work with Miranda "got a little close — then it got really far apart." They're still on good terms, and she gives him the plot hook for his character mission to keep a promise. If he could only remember which promise...
- And in 3, with Shepard, if you romanced him in the last game.
"I like Kasumi, but why do I feel like I need to check the Citadel for parts she may have pawned?"A Classy Cat-Burglar who is available in the Kasumi - Stolen Memory DLC pack for Xbox 360 & PC, and included on disc for PlayStation 3. She is so skilled that few are aware that she even exists.
Voiced by: Kym Lane (credited as Kym Hoy)
- Affectionate Nickname: She calls Shepard "Shep."
- Ambiguously Bi: She deeply loved Keiji, and spies on Jacob while he's working out, but she also makes some admiring comments about Miranda's body. This is taken further in Citadel, where she offers to record Miranda and Jack "working out their sexual tension" and roots through Shepard's underwear drawer, regardless of the commander's gender.
- Anti-Hero: Despite being a shameless career kleptomaniac, she was willing to place herself in severe danger to protect a young artist purely on principle. She has a caring side, often showing concern for the rest of the squad. Of course, given that you have a squad of mercs, terrorists, Knights Templars and berserkers, her thieving seems pretty benign in comparison.
- In Mass Effect 3, she helps the salarian Spectre agent assigned to hunt her down stop an indoctrinated hanar diplomat from dooming his entire species.
- In the Citadel DLC, she's robbing a casino and intends to give the loot to the war refugees.
- Ascended Fangirl: In-universe; describes herself as a fan of Shepard when she first meets him/her.
- Backstab: Her signature ability, called Shadow Strike. Less of an actual Backstab, but more "bop people with the omni-tool".
- Calling Card: In her early career, she left a rose in place of what she stole. Her partner eventually made her realize how unproductive this is for a thief.
- The Caper: Her activity of choice. Naturally, her loyalty mission is one.
- Covert Pervert:
- She admits to using her cloak in order to spy on Jacob while he's working out.
- Given her rather accurate comments about whoever Shepard chose to romance, it's entirely possible she might have been secretly watching during their romance scene. Case in point — her comment after Shepard sleeps with Miranda:
Kasumi: Oh, Shepard. The engine room? Really? Down there where Tali works? Okay, I gotta ask... just how genetically modified is she? Because -— wow.
- In the Citadel DLC for 3, she can be found during the party checking Shepard's drawers to find out what kind of underwear they wear. Apparently she does this with everyone. She spends the whole party reminiscing about Jacob's crunches, admiring James's muscles, and offering to record Jack and Miranda working out their "sexual tension". The only "covert" part is her turning invisible again before they can react.
- Dark is Not Evil: Wears mostly black but is in fact one of the nicest and friendliest of all the party members.
- Deadpan Snarker
- On Korlus, regarding Rana Thanoptis:
Kasumi: She seems nice... in a mad scientist ethics-for-sale kind of way.
- On the Citadel:
- On Korlus, regarding Rana Thanoptis:
- Demoted to Extra: While most of the Mass Effect 2 squadmates have smaller roles in 3, Zaeed and Kasumi suffer the most from it, likely due to being DLC characters. At the very least, having both of them keeps you from choosing between war assets.
- Does Not Like Spam: The Citadel DLC reveals that she's slightly lactose-intolerant, having mistaken the milk in Shep's fridge to be made of soy.
"I'm not really lactose-intolerant. I just don't put up with lactose's stupid drama."
- Downloadable Content: She does not appear in the vanilla game at all.
- Establishing Character Moment: Unlike the other squad members, who meet you face to face, Kasumi insists on talking to you through a hacked Citadel advertisement. She then reveals she's been watching the whole time, and leaps off a railing above Shepard to introduce herself in person.
- Face Framed in Shadow: Aside from the glint of her eyes, we never see the top half of her face.
- Faking the Dead: In Mass Effect 3, after helping you (and another Spectre who's trying to arrest her), she "activates an explosive failsafe" on a terminal and collapses in a bloody heap. The Spectre is fooled, but Shepard sees right through it. A good way to introduce the new Decoy ability.
- Fangirl: "Good to finally meet you, Commander Shepard. Kasumi Goto. I'm a fan."
- Friend to All Children: She's a nice person in general, but she seems pretty fond of children in particular — the quickest way to get on her bad side is to injure or traumatise a child. One of her anecdotes involves a rare wholly charitable act, which was to rescue a child from slavery, and seeing what Jack and other biotic children went through on Pragia is enough to reduce her to tears.
- The Gambling Addict: The only time she's not sneaking around at the party is if you host a card game, where she'll finally settle down and join Liara and James for a hand of poker.
- Genki Girl: She's very enthusiastic.
- Glass Cannon: She's excellent at incapacitating enemies up close, but she has low health and shields while her main ability often puts her in dangerous situations. Very inconvenient especially on her loyalty mission, where she is your only squadmate.
- Gossipy Hens: If Shepard talks to her on the Normandy, she gossips about the other crewmembers and talks about rumors.
- Highly Visible Ninja: In her loyalty mission, she strolls right up to Hock's estate in her Spy Catsuit, not even bothering to take her hood down, and seems surprised when Hock turns her away. She then uses her invisibility to get into the building anyway.
- Hypocritical Humor: During the Hock heist, she notes that his password, "Peruggia", refers to Vincenzo Peruggia, the man who stole the Mona Lisa back in the 1880's. The Shadow Broker DLC reveals that she has also stolen the Mona Lisa, but is offering it for sale. As well as the Koh-i-Noor Diamond and a number of other alien artifacts that are presumably as valuable.
- In the Hood: Kasumi wears a hood at all times so no one can ever really see her face.
- Invisibility: Uses the same invisibility device as the player Infiltrator.
- I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: She has a crush on Jacob, but will support Fem!Shep if she decides to romance him. Dump him though and you get this.
- It's All About Me: Shades of this in 3 where she resents Shepard for recruiting her for the Suicide Mission and reacts quite hostile when he intends to recruit her for the war effort (something that is important to save the entire galaxy, no less), stating she would rather spend her remaining time with Keiji's memories. While she does agree to help the Crucible project in the end, the promise of being allowed to steal some expensive tech for herself was probably a main reason for that.
- Just a Machine: Subtle but present.
Kasumi: Sometimes [EDI] seems like a person, but when it comes down to it, I can't get past her being a computer.
Kasumi: (on the heretics) Killed or remade, what's the difference? They're only synthetics. Just fancy security mechs.
- Just Like Robin Hood: In "Citadel", Shepard can walk in on her about to pull a heist on the Silver Coast Casino. She's not doing it for the money or the fun. She plans on giving the loot to refugees, since she feels that they need it more than the Casino owners.
- Killed Off for Real: If you didn't go on her loyalty mission at all, her death's not fake. Shepard simply looks on and then walks away. Of course, maybe she's faking her death towards Shepard too, but she certainly doesn't join your list of war assets.
- Kleptomaniac Hero: One quality she definitely shares with Shepard.
- Kleptomaniac Hero Found Underwear: Literally. You can catch her snooping through Shepard's intimates during the party in Anderson's apartment!
- Knife Nut: You never see her using them in-game, but she gets very...enthused over a selection of knives on Tuchanka, and contemplates "borrowing" them sometime later.
- Lampshade Hanging: When commenting on female Shepard's romance with Garrus, she notes that many people want them to be together.
- Le Parkour: Briefly shows off some moves in her loyalty mission.
- The Lost Lenore: She never completely gets over Keiji's death. It actually gets worse in ME3 if you allowed her to keep the greybox. And then proceeds to get much, much better if you choose the Synthesis ending, as Keiji's greybox is affected and he returns to life.
- Loveable Rogue: She's very endearing for a self-admitted kleptomaniac.
- Magikarp Power: She starts out very weak. With the right allocation of skill points, she becomes a devastating Glass Cannon.
- Meaningful Name:
- Kasumi is a Japanese name that means simply "mist". KASUMI is also the name of a cipher used in electronic security.
- The Japanese word "goto", the same word as her surname and which is pronounced mostly the same, also means "robber" or "robbery."
- Meet Cute: When examining one of the paintings in her quarters, she'll tell you how she acquired it. She was hired to steal it, and when she went to take it, it had already been stolen. As she was leaving, she saw another thief with the painting, chased him down and tackled him. The other thief was Keiji, and he and Kasumi ended up as partners in crime as well as lovers. Neither of their clients ever did get the painting, because they kept it as a memento.
- Nice Girl: Minus the whole "stealing everything in sight" thing, Kasumi is one of the most openly friendly members of your crew.
- The Nicknamer: She calls Shepard 'Shep' on a variety of occasions and designates the Illusive Man as 'Mr. Illusive.' The first may be something of an Ascended Meme as (Fem/Male)Shep is a common Fan Nickname for Shepard.
- Not Me This Time: If you set off the scanners on the Citadel on your first visit with her in your party.
Kasumi: I swear to God, I didn't touch anything.
- Not in This for Your Revolution: In 3, she's not interested in putting her life on the line to fight the Reapers. Her mind can be changed by simply stating she doesn't need to be on the front lines — her computer skills are a big enough asset... that and there is a lot on the Crucible for her to steal.
- Odd Friendship: As a Spectre, Shepard technically is a galactic lawman, while Kasumi is a galactic master-thief.
- Optional Party Member: A DLC character (although her DLC is included with the PS3 version, and she can thus be considered a canon character for the PS3 version).
- Outlaw Couple: With her former partner, Keiji.
- Perky Goth: Her outfit is of a design normally associated with dark, brooding characters, but she's actually usually pretty cheerful and playful.
- The Pollyanna: She always reflects that things could be worse... even when trapped inside a derelict Reaper with dozens of husks that's slowly crashing into a star. Hey, at least it's not full of rats!
- But take her with you on Jack's loyalty mission, and the thought of children being experimented on horrifies her beyond words.
- Phantom Thief: She's one of the galaxy's best thieves/hackers, but has no criminal record. On her loyalty mission, Kasumi even says that no one knows what she looks like.
- Playful Hacker:
- She greets Shepard by taking over one of the Citadel's advertising terminals. Her hacking skills are actually on-par with both Legion and Tali.
- If Shepard ignores her, she has half a dozen humorous comments from being a credit agency for help with collector agents to the offer of a sweet Japanese girl, before getting mad if Shepard doesn't bite.
Ad!Kasumi: OK, really? How many times can you walk by without stopping?
- She even starts helping the Spectre sent to arrest her with one of his investigations just because.
- For that matter she plays around with this at the party in Citadel, from imitating Jacob doing crunches to helping him win a push up contest against James to raiding Shepard's underwear drawer.
- Recruiting the Criminal: Cerberus seeks her out to use her skills against the Collectors.
- Shipper on Deck: She ships Ken/Gabby and Shepard/Any of the ME2 love interests (if applicable). But she especially ships Tali and Garrus with Shepard for their respective genders.
- The Smart Guy: Along with Tali and Legion, she's an ideal choice for the Tech Expert during the suicide mission.
- The Sneaky Guy/Stealth Expert: "Now you see me..."
- Spy Catsuit: Her outfit is as form-fitting as Miranda's.
- Stealth Hi/Bye: Her special ability involves this.
Kasumi: Now you see me...
- Stepford Snarker
- Trademark Favorite Food: She loves ramen, and regrets not having stolen her grandmother's recipe.
- The Trickster: She spends the entire party in Citadel messing with the rest of the crew. She's far more lighthearted and fun than Jack being a nasty Troll, making Kasumi this.
- What the Hell, Player?: Ignore Kasumi on the Citadel when she's pretending to be a station advertisement, and she'll drop the Spy Speak and call Shepard out to meet with her already, dammit.
- Worthy Opponent:
- She considers Spectre Jondum Bau one, and, in fact, forwarded the information on the possibly indoctrinated hanar diplomat to him, claiming the galaxy needs more men like him. Even as he's trying to arrest her.
Kasumi: Nobody's perfect.
- The feeling's mutual — Jondum openly admires her.
Jondum Bau: Her intelligence and skill are almost salarian.
- She considers Spectre Jondum Bau one, and, in fact, forwarded the information on the possibly indoctrinated hanar diplomat to him, claiming the galaxy needs more men like him. Even as he's trying to arrest her.
"I would never say anything against Miranda. And expect to survive the reprisal."A human biotic and tech specialist, "born" on Earth. Her father genetically engineered her for perfection, but couldn't have cared less about what she wanted. When she ran from him, Cerberus offered her protection, gaining her loyalty in the process. She first appeared in Mass Effect Galaxy, as well as in the comic Mass Effect: Redemption. Romance option for a male Shepard.
Voiced by: Yvonne Strahovski
- Abusive Parents: Let's just say Daddy is worse than what she says. And what she says ain't positive about Mr. Lawson.
- Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene: In her loyalty mission where she debates whether or not to talk to her sister.
- Action Girl: Designed to be, indeed. Those biotics probably didn't come cheap. Especially since, officially, humanity had no idea what biotics were at the time.
- Always Someone Better: If you choose to earn her friendship, she reveals she feels somewhat inferior to Shepard. She was designed to be perfect and easily accomplish impossible tasks she is set. Shepard is just a regular person but somehow manages to succeed in doing impossible tasks anyway and often completes them with results beyond what she could have done. It's also implied that she feels a bit jealous of how much faith the Illusive Man places in Shepard.
- Anti-Hero: For most of 2 she's veering into (and occasionally entering) He Who Fights Monsters territory and is generally both a Knight Templar and Good Is Not Nice. From the end of 2 onward though she becomes more of a Classical Anti-Hero. She has no Kick the Dog moments, her entire quest arc in 3 is about her trying to protect her sister from her father, and along the way, she tries to save refugees of all races from a husk facility masquerading as a refuge.
- Arch-Enemy: Jack sees her this way, complete with an The Only One Allowed to Defeat You mentality. This reaches its peak during a catfight that Shepard has to head off, possibly also losing the loyalty of one or the other. Fortunately, as of the Citadel DLC, they've smoothed things over a bit.
Jack: She'll survive. I hate to see her die before I get the chance to filet her myself!
- Archnemesis Dad: The reason she joined Cerberus in the first place was to gain protection from her father. Her dad actually had close Cerberus ties before this, but the Illusive Man valued her abilities over his resources. Until the third game, that is. Besides, she's left Cerberus by that point (dead or alive).
- The Atoner: In 3, for her work with Cerberus and other things. To the point that she apologizes to Shepard for something she almost did to him/her.
- Awesome Aussie: By extension of being voiced by and face-modeled after one.
- Badass Boast: Early in 2.
- Badass Bookworm: A very capable combatant and extremely intelligent as well, having led the Lazarus Project to bring someone back from the dead.
- The Baroness: Sexpot variety, albeit a much less evil example than most.
- Barrier Warrior: Citadel replaces Slam with the redesigned Reave.
- Beauty Equals Goodness: Played with. She's incredibly beautiful and while, initially, not the most morally inclined member of Shepard's crew, she's far from evil and is also one of the better members of Cerberus.
- Beauty Is Never Tarnished: In Mass Effect 3, after she gets the crap beaten out of her by Kai Leng, she doesn't appear to have any visible wounds on her body aside from a few scratches on her face. This is especially weird if she actually dies from her wounds. Then again, she easily could've had severe internal injuries from blunt force trauma.
- Because You Can Cope: If you lose her loyalty by siding with Jack, you can regain it by saying that you did it because she's more understanding than Jack is.
- Because You Were Nice to Me: Paragon Shepard can cause her to resign from Cerberus, likely due to Shepard being the first person with authority over her to actually ask what she wants, not attempt to control her, and seeks her friendship with no ulterior motive for doing so.
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: With a male Renegade Shepard, their First Kiss pretty much comes about after he mercilessly teases and taunts her about her insecurities and is generally rude and challenging, which seems to be pushing all her buttons... with Miranda being flabbergasted and asking "Okay, what the hell was that?!" afterwards.
- Beneath the Mask: Under the cocky, arrogant, and ruthless demeanor lies an extremely insecure woman with a hell of an inferiority complex, major daddy issues, and a surprisingly good heart that needs to be pushed in the right direction.
- Big Sister Instinct: She will go the ends of the galaxy and risk everything to protect Oriana.
- Birds of a Feather: Shepard can use this to argue for or against a relationship with her.
Shepard: This won't work, Miranda. We're Too Much Alike.
- Bond One-Liner:
- Once Shepard escapes the Lazarus facility, his/her first encounter with Miranda has her killing Wilson in cold blood.
Wilson: Miranda? But you're—
[Miranda kills him]
- Then there's her loyalty mission:
Miranda: Goodbye Niket, I'm gonna miss you...
Miranda:...not literally, of course.
- In the third game, at the end of the Sanctuary mission if she's still alive:
Henry Lawson: [after releasing Oriana] Alright, take her. But I want out alive, deal?
''[Miranda uses her biotics to throw him out the window]
Miranda: No deal.
- Once Shepard escapes the Lazarus facility, his/her first encounter with Miranda has her killing Wilson in cold blood.
- Brainy Brunette: She was the head scientist of the Lazarus Project.
- Broken Ace: Beautiful, intelligent, competent, and consumed with self-doubt and self-loathing due to being genetically engineered by her father to be be absolutely perfect and capable of accomplishing anything. This causes her to view anything she accomplishes to be a result of her father's money and planning, and believes that only her mistakes are truly hers.
- Broken Bird: See Freudian Excuse.
- Broken Pedestal: To the Illusive Man and Cerberus at the end of 2.
- Buxom Is Better: As the engineers put it...
Daniels: I've got green across the board. The forward tanks are buoyant and elevated.
Donnelly: Are ya talking about the Normandy or Miranda?
Daniels: I'm talking about the one that's covered and protected, not bouncing in the breeze.
- Even Jack concurs in the Citadel DLC. The first genuine compliment she gives? "I still really hate you, but you have fantastic tits."
- Canon Immigrant: From the Mass Effect Galaxy iPhone game and the Mass Effect Redemption comic. Notably, in the latter, she did not yet look like Yvonne Strahovski.
- Character Development:
- Compare the first conversation you have with her after first meeting with the Illusive Man in 2 to the last one you have with her on the Citadel in 3. By the time you meet her in Sanctuary, she's not much of an Ice Queen any longer...
- Her breakdown in 3 over the guilt of wanting to install a control chip in Shepard's brain, speaks volumes over how far she's come, as she realises that her attempt to control Shepard almost turned her into her father. Best summed up in this line:
Miranda: Nobody's perfect.
- Cloning Blues: See Ultimate Life Form below, and add the fact that A: She is a female clone of her father and B: Her father is a massive jerk. She can get over it provided with enough time, and even trolls Shepard during Citadel by asking him/her if he really is the original Shepard.
Miranda: I wasn't even the first one he made. I was only the first one he kept.
- Combat Stilettos: Wears them for no explicable reason. Her DLC outfit removes them.
- Come with Me If You Want to Live: When she and Shepard have their first real meeting, she has the only way off the Lazarus research station.
- Conflicting Loyalty: Begins to show a little after her Loyalty Mission, particularly with a Paragon Shepard. While she has been extremely loyal to Cerberus for her entire adult life and a Paragon Shepard opposes Cerberus ideals in almost every way, Shepard also risked a great deal to help her keep her sister away from their father, without any strings attached. In the end, when she is forced to choose between Cerberus and Shepard, she chooses Shepard without hesitation.
- Control Freak: One of her main character flaws. She initially wanted to implant Shepard with a Control Chip, but was vetoed by the Illusive Man, since it could impair Shepard's abilities and the idea was to bring them back exactly as they were. She later regrets this, since she realizes that her attempt to control Shepard almost made her be just like her father.
- Oriana's grateful email to Shepard after s/he rescued her during Miranda's loyalty mission, has a secondary postscript addressed to Miranda, where it turns out that Oriana is both perfectly aware of, and subsequently orders, Miranda to stop reading Shepard's private mail!
- Cool Big Sis: To her (genetically identical) little sister Oriana Lawson, occasional Control Freak moments notwithstanding. Especially if she allows herself to be known to Oriana.
- Covert Pervert: After completing her loyalty mission, she attempts to give Male Shepard a hug. She's hesitant at first, but she ends up touching his chest for no reason. She was really trying to cop a feel off of the commander's muscles.
- Crazy-Prepared: She plants a tracer on Kai Leng, giving Shepard the exact location of the Illusive Man's base on Cronus Station, just because she had a feeling it'd be useful. Shepard is both relieved and grateful — before that, s/he was grasping at straws.
- Cultured Badass: Enjoys classical music, particularly the Danish composer Carl Nielsen.
- Deadpan Snarker: Not as much as many of the other characters, but she has her moments, particularly when flirting with Shepard if romanced.
- Death of the Hypotenuse: If you romanced her in ME2 but break up with her in order to rekindle your ME1 romance in ME3, she will die regardless of the help you give her.
- Defector from Decadence: Paragon Shepard can cause her to resign from Cerberus. Also part of Niket's argument against letting Miranda take Oriana with her on her loyalty mission — when she accuses him of being bought by her father, he calls her out on the luxuries she enjoyed before she left.
- Defrosting Ice Queen: Becomes notably less unpleasant as the story progresses — at least to Shepard. She's also generally nicer to Jacob as well, due to their past relationship. By 3, she's completely defrosted and is one of the nicest people in the entire game.
- Designer Babies: She was specifically designed by her father as part of his "dynasty" and really, really wishes she hadn't been.
- Did Not See That Coming: Said almost verbatim after Niket betrays her during her loyalty mission.
- Died in Your Arms Tonight: One of her possible death scenes in Mass Effect 3 has her dying in Shepard's arms, reconciling with Oriana, and making Shepard promise to keep fighting, no matter what the cost. This earns her a name drop when Shepard kills Kai Leng.
- The Dragon: To The Illusive Man, at least until the end of the second game. She's been replaced by Kai Leng as of Mass Effect 3.
Mysterious Figure: You had Miranda, I have her. Mine has more bite.
- This role of hers is also referenced by Shepard's clone in the Citadel DLC, with regards to Maya Brooks.
- Easily Forgiven: Bordering on Karma Houdini if the player fulfills the very specific set of circumstances that let her live to the end. Despite loyally serving Cerberus for years as TIM's right-hand woman while participating in or at least being complicit in various atrocities (such as the raid on the quarian fleet, which resulted in several civilian deaths in a failed attempt to kidnap Gillian Grayson), she gets off completely scot-free in the third game. No one bothers to arrest her, and she even gets to work on the Crucible without anyone batting an eyelid. This is particularly odd when ex-Cerberus personnel with a much more strenuous connection to the group get thrown in prison in the same game for just being members (such as Kenneth and Daniels).
- A specific example: when Miranda apologizes for attempting to insert a control chip into Shepard's brain and effectively make them a slave for Cerberus, the dialogue options available are "I forgive you" and a slightly more brusque version of "I forgive you". While most versions of Shepard would be completely justified to throw that apology back in her face and more, this example is particularly noticeable as these are the only responses available even if Shepard up to this point has been a short-tempered renegade who has shot much less deserving people just for annoying them. The closest Shepard can come to rebuking her for this is refusing to grant her access to Alliance resources when she asks for them later (with the stated reasoning having nothing to do with this or her earlier deeds), which indirectly leads to her death.
- Establishing Character Moment: The first time she's actually spoken to, she guns down Wilson for betraying her and follows it up with a sarcastic quip. She then calmly counters any arguments Shepard makes, and prioritizes getting Shepard off the station rather than risk waiting for (very unlikely) survivors.
- Even Evil Has Standards: Despite being a Cerberus supporter who is quick to disavow their atrocities, she regards Kai Leng as a Psycho for Hire in the comics.
- Face Palm: Her reaction when Shepard suggests that she sleep with Jack and get over their sexual tension.
- Fantastic Racism: Averted, despite her status as a Cerberus agent. She specifically states, and the game backs up, that she's more pro-human than anti-alien and also laments how so many people join Cerberus for no other reason than xenophobia. She also has a certain respect for the asari.
- Fatal Flaw: Pride. She's very confident in her abilities and thinks herself a master at reading people. Her inability to comprehend that people will react other than the way she believes they will often screws her. She also seems to have the mindset of handing out as little information as possible, with complete disregard for how others will react to her doing so.
- Can become a literal example of a Fatal Flaw in the third game. She chooses to go after her father alone, despite Shepard pointing out that whatever leads she has could be much better followed-up if she at least told the Normandy team about them. She also asks Shepard to give her access to classified Alliance resources, without actually giving Shepard information or accepting further help. As a result, she proceeds to Sanctuary alone where she most likely dies (without a very specific set of criteria determining her survival). Even in the best case scenario, she ends up heavily injured at the hands of Kai Leng, only survives because Shepard shows up just in time by sheer coincidence, and still can potentially be shot to death in her injured state by her father if Shepard doesn't choose the right dialogue options.
- Faustian Rebellion: Paragon Shepard can push her into performing one against the Illusive Man. Also part of her backstory before joining Cerberus.
- Femme Fatale: Beautiful, seductive, and utterly ruthless at first.
- Foil: To Ashley. One is extremely loyal to the Alliance, the other Cerberus. One is fiery but can be made to show a softer side, the other starts out as an Ice Queen who defrosts. One is very close with her sisters, the other prefers to observe her from afar. Not to mention that in 3, Ashley now resembles Miranda a little more with let-down hair and a more form fitting outfit.
- Miranda is also one to Jack. Miranda is calculating and measured, believes in following orders, keeps an ice queen demeanour and is fiercely loyal to Cerberus. Jack is brash and reckless, has very little respect for authority and hates Cerberus' guts. Mass Effect 3 showcases their respective character growths and once again they're opposites. Miranda has become a kind woman, but if you romanced her and decide to break up with her, she absolutely shatters, as while she used to have Cerberus around as a form of family, she is now pretty much alone (her sister aside, who is in danger). Meanwhile Jack has become a lot kinder too, but if you break up with her she's completely fine with it, as she has a new family in her students.
- Form-Fitting Wardrobe: Although this seems to be the go with almost all types of wardrobe in the 'verse, including many of the armors and regardless of sex. Played straight that since her outfit is done to make it look leather-like, not to mention quite shiny, it gives the illusion of more skin-tight and, say, alluring.
- Freudian Excuse: Much of her behavior makes more sense in light of her loyalty mission and the Shadow Broker dossier. Before meeting Shepard, only three people have never betrayed her to her knowledge: a childhood friend, the Illusive Man, and Jacob. By the end of the game, it's entirely likely that only Jacob and the Illusive Man remain from that list. With the Shadow Broker dossier, it's clear that part of her affection for her sister comes from being unable to have children of her own, and despite being in a dating service, she ruthlessly cuts off one candidate who makes the mistake of trying to be interested in more than just sex. Since she cannot bear children, she's less interested in romance. Though these are played more subtly than most Freudian Excuse examples, once they're revealed, most of Miranda's personality is clearly defined by these.
- The Friend Nobody Likes: "Nobody" is an overstatement, but her hardline pro-Cerberus stance does alienate her from the others somewhat. This is why someone always argues against making her the fire team leader. Even Garrus who is otherwise friendly and accepting of most people heavily dislikes her, as he'll argue against making her the fire team leader in Jack's absence ("Half of us don't even trust you!"). Jacob has known her the longest, Samara respects her determination, and Kasumi seems to like her (though she likes everybody). Once Character Development sets in and she takes a level in kindess in 3, this changes, noticeably in "Citadel".
- Good Is Not Nice: As cold, bitter, bitingly critical of others, and occasionally ruthless as Miranda can be sometimes, she is still a good person deep down. She genuinely believes that Cerberus is pro-human and only wants to help further humanity's agenda.
- Good Is Not Soft: After Character Development the "not nice" part disappears and the "good" part becomes more prominent. She becomes genuinely friendly and caring, expresses regret over what she wanted to do to Shepard, unlike other characters doesn't ask for help when trying to protect her sister, and upon discovering Cerberus has set up essentially a Nazi death camp makes efforts to warn people away. Then she kills her father, who was responsible for said death camp. Even in the second game her Establishing Character Moment is her watching over Shepard with a genuinely warm smile, trying to first help them make a full recovery then get to safety, then upon seeing Wilson flashes a Psychotic Smirk and executes him.
- Guide Dang It: Keeping her alive in the 3rd game requires meeting a very specific set of criteria. To summarize: she needs to be loyal from 2, and you need to have warned her about Kai Leng, and/or Charm her father during the standoff, and give her access to Alliance resources earlier in the game. Additionally, if you romanced her in 2, you need to break up with her before exporting your save,note because if you start with an active romance but don't continue it further, she'll die no matter what you do.
- Heel–Face Turn: She's one of the Illusive Man's most loyal agents, yet Paragon Shepard can end up causing her to resign from Cerberus and hang up on the Illusive Man, basically delivering the verbal equivalent of flipping him off to his face. The third game reveals that he did not take this well.
- Heel–Face Door-Slam: Possibility in the third game. She finally sees the error of her ways, condemns Cerberus, then tries to repent by warning people about them and helping to take down one of the facilities where they kidnap people to make husks... then she gets stabbed by Kai Leng.
- Also possible in the second game. If she's in the final stretch of the suicide mission and the base is destroyed, she will agree with Shepard and resign from Cerberus on the spot. But if she is not loyal, she will die in the subsequent escape.
- Hero of Another Story: While Shepard is building alliances in 3, s/he can meet with Miranda a few times, where she discusses a mission she's currently on involving her sister and father, and later Cerberus. Their stories eventually coincide, however.
- Horrible Judge of Character: She claims to be an "excellent judge of character" but it's clear with her views on Cerberus and in particular the Illusive Man that this isn't always the case. She gets her eyes opened at the end of 2.
- Hypocrisy Nod: She apologizes in 3 for intending to put a control chip into Shepard during the Lazarus project, noting that it was a hypocritical plan for someone who has had her life defined by her struggle with her control freak father.
- Ice Queen: Explicitly called that by a soon-to-be-former Cerberus employee. Though, oddly enough, also a Perpetual Smiler.
- Immortality Begins at 20: This can be inferred, given that the genetically-identical Oriana was raised by civilians without raising any eyebrows.
- I'm Not Here to Make Friends: Says this to Shepard in one of their first conversations. She ends up quite surprised when this is what actually happens, enough that it overrides her initial loyalty to Cerberus.
- Ink-Suit Actor: Albeit with dyed hair.
- In the concept art she was blonde.
- Insufferable Genius: At first, although dialog shows her pride is largely a security mechanism she uses to deal with her insecurity about being a Designer Baby.
- As a Sentinel-style "Cerberus Officer", she's probably the closest Shepard's team has to this, being somewhat capable in combat, a decent biotic, and good at using tech to disable enemies. Her passive skill also provides bonuses to the entire squad's health and weapon damage, making her a good tactical choice for any player class or squad makeup.
- With a bit of Glass Cannon as well. She has low health (lower than Garrus's) and all three of her skills are geared towards offence.
- Jerkass Façade: This seems to be the case. It appears that she's a cold professional to everyone she meets until she spends time around them and decides that she can trust them. At the start of the game, she'll shut down any attempt at personal conversation, but in her office aboard the Normandy she's more open with Shepard. This is most obvious regarding Jack. If Shepard asks her about what Cerberus did, she'll say without hesitation that it was a mistake and was rightfully shut down as soon as the Illusive Man found out. But when Jack calls her out on it directly, she'll refuse to apologize.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: She really does want humanity to succeed and will do what she can to keep those she cares about safe at any cost. By 3, the Jerk part is pretty much completely gone.
- Despite her cold exterior she seems to genuinely care for Shepard even before being revived. When s/he begins waking up Miranda bitches out Wilson then helps Shepard stabilize with a warm smile.
- Kick the Dog: She has a few moments.
- In her very first appearance, if you try to get her to go back and save survivors in the overrun Cerberus lab, she'll scold you for being shortsighted and refer to all of the workers as "expendable".
- On Freedom's Progress, she'll recommend taking Veetor for "interrogation" (possibly including Cold-Blooded Torture) rather than letting Tali take him back for medical care, though she'll back down if Shepard says no.
- She's less than sympathetic about the bad blood between the quarians and Cerberus, listing Cerberus' grievances against the quarians (including mass murder) as "nothing personal". Her expressing knowledge and complicity about said raid also heavily implies she knew that the whole purpose of the raid was to kidnap and torture Gillian Grayson (as explained in the tie-in novel Mass Effect: Ascension), a child who was hiding with the quarians because Cerberus had previously attempted to use her as a biotic weapon and pumped her full of enough drugs that she had to be hospitalized multiple times. Granted, she also claims Prazza's account is "not how she would have explained it" suggesting she may have been fed false information, but either way it's callous, since all the dead quarians and even the tortured and traumatized human child were apparently seen by her as acceptable losses.
- If for some reason Shepard handed Veetor over to Cerberus at her insistence rather than letting him go back to the Fleet, he'll show up later in Tali's loyalty mission obviously traumatized from the interrogation, which didn't include explicit mutilation but did feature Cerberus kidnapping him and forcibly pumping him full of drugs to keep him "stable", which turned him into even more of a mental wreck. Such is his state that he can now no longer function without a doctor beside him at all times, and he screams and shrinks back in fear at the mere sight of a human. Rather than apologize or admit any wrongdoing on her part, Miranda proceeds to immediately dodge responsibility before attempting to justify and defend Cerberus's interrogation methods.
- Her fight with Jack. Confrontations between Party Members tend to be small Kick the Dog moments for all parties involved, even though they do have pretty justifiable reasons for being mad. What makes her fight with Jack in particular stand out though is the line "Clearly, you were a mistake". Ouch. And while it's true that Jack was looking for a fight there, Miranda's response is still cold. She will admit to Shepard in private that she believes what was done to Jack was wrong, but she never admits it to Jack herself.
- Even the fact that her loyalty to Shepard is at stake in said conflict seems to be this, considering her mission had nothing to do with her allegiance to Cerberus, and instead was a deeply personal favor.
- Right after the Normandy gets attacked by the Collectors, and Joker, the sole survivor of the attack watches all his friends be dragged away by various cosmic horrors, the first thing she does upon getting back the ship is scold Joker for losing the crew and unshackling EDI (which saved the ship). Keep in mind that it was her brilliant idea that all the capable fighters aboard abandon the ship, leaving it wide open for attack.
- Kick the Son of a Bitch: She mercilessly shoots Wilson.
- Killing her father in Mass Effect 3.
- Knight Templar: When with Cerberus, though still quite light compared to others in the organization.
- Knight Templar Big Brother: She keeps extremely detailed records on all her sister's potential boyfriends. Even her sister finds that a little creepy.
- The Lad-ette: Not as much as Fem!Shep, but she also can't think of a single traditionally feminine interest to talk about when they try to act more normal.
- Lady of Black Magic: The sci-fi equivalent of one as a Lady of War and biotic.
- Lady of War: She's elegant, has a calm and cold demeanor, and prefers to use her more graceful biotics over firearms.
- Lady in Red: In the Citadel DLC, she wears a red dress when she and Shepard head to the Silver Coast Casino for some fun.
- The Lancer: She's Shepard's executive officer, although she shares the overarching Lancer role with Jacob and Garrus. Which is why Miranda is a good choice for Fire Team Leader during the suicide mission, just like both aforementioned squadmates.
- Last Kiss: If she dies in 3 and is romantically involved with Shepard.
- Law of Inverse Fertility: Judging from Liara's files on her, she's been trying really hard to get pregnant. Sadly, she has a benign neoplasm that makes her unable to conceive. It's subtly implied this was either yet another way Henry Lawson meant to control his daughter, or the "imperfection" that led to the creation of Oriana.
- Like Father, Like Son: Subverted; they turn out to be very different people in the end. Both are highly talented scientists who use their intelligence to do the extraordinary. Miranda brings Shepard back to life, and Henry manages to control husks independently of the Reapers. However, while Miranda's only ethical quandary was whether to implant Shepard with a control chip (which she later regrets even considering) and she becomes a genuinely heroic person, Henry sacrifices thousands, if not millions of innocent people to indoctrination in order to make his breakthrough, and never regrets a thing. While Henry is obsessed with securing a lasting legacy of his own, Miranda can't even get beyond taking credit for anything she achieved all by herself.
- Mad Scientist's Beautiful Daughter: Henry Lawson created her to be perfect in every way, using his own DNA as a template, for reasons that had as much to do with satisfying his own ego as securing an heir for his dynasty. Naturally, Miranda had other plans.
- Male Gaze: The in-game camera spends a lot of time focused on Miranda's rear, including at rather inappropriate times (one example occurs while she's asking for help regarding her sister — the dialogue wheel appears just as her rear end comes into focus). This has also gotten ire from some fans.
- Mind over Matter: She has biotic powers. Not, however, on the same level as Jack and Samara; picking her for the biotic bubble will result in the death of one squadmate. Curiously, she's a year older than the biotics who were exposed in the original Singapore incident.
- Morality Chain: A Paragon Shepard can become this to her.
- Jacob also shares this role, being one of the few people that Miranda actually will listen to for advice.
- Morality Pet: Her (much younger) twin sister, Oriana.
- Ms. Fanservice:
- Noted and lampshaded by the crew:
Donnelly: I don't know. Operative Lawson's uniform is very official: it always makes me stand at attention.
- This is lampshaded during her loyalty mission (even if she's wearing the appearance pack armour).
- And again by Ashley in Mass Effect 3, if you romanced her in the first game and Miranda in the second:
- Noted and lampshaded by the crew:
- My God, What Have I Done?: She feels terrible guilt for even considering installing a control chip into Shepard and basically turning him/her into a mindless slave. Even more so as it is exactly what she tries to keep her father from doing to her and her sister, almost becoming just like him.
- My Country, Right or Wrong: While Miranda doesn't agree with everything Cerberus does and acknowledges that they cross the line, she stays on with them anyway until the end of 2.
- Narcissist: Inverted. She initially appears to be this, but upon getting to know her better, it turns out that she is in fact self-loathing and feeling that she does not deserve credit for her accomplishments. Part of her Character Development is learning to get over this.
- Never a Self-Made Woman: Conversed by Miranda. She feels all her accomplishments were made possible by her father's genetic influence, and the only things she can take credit for are her mistakes. Of course, Shepard can tell her that she was the one who decided what to do with her gifts.
- Nice Girl: Post-defrosting, and even before that she's very friendly and polite when speaking to Shepard on the Normandy.
- No True Scotsman: Those guys that tortured Jack? They're not really Cerberus, according to her. Neither were the guys who orchestrated the deaths of entire Alliance platoons. She stops using this trope by the third game though, as she has realized how wrong she was, and has dedicated herself to taking the organization down.
- Noble Demon/Noble Top Enforcer: When with Cerberus, though the "noble" part isn't immediately obvious.
- Not So Different: From her father. For all her resentment over his domineering attitude and how he attempted to control her entire life, she herself veers dangerously to falling into this territory when trying to protect her sister Oriana. Not to mention, initially wanting to install a control-chip in Shepard's brain to keep them in line.
- Ultimately subverted because her controlling nature towards her sister is motivated by genuine love and a desire to protect her (as opposed to her father just wanting to control Miranda because he feels like he owns her). It is also a sign of her character development that she does come to recognize just how dangerously close she came to becoming like her father. In the third game she has a minor breakdown over the lingering guilt she feels about the control-chip, realizing that it's exactly what he would have done. Shepard can of course, forgive her and assure her that she is better than her father.
- Also from Jack. Both are powerful biotic women with potential for greatness who had their gifts turned into curses by others (Miranda's father and Cerberus respectively) and the ensuing traumatic childhoods has made them both cold, bitter, and ruthless until when or if Shepard gets them to move past their pain and become happier (and better) people. Sadly, all of these similarities are lost on them both.
- Finally, she tries to convince Shepard of this concerning Cerberus. And if it's a Renegade Shepard we're talking about, she's kind of right.
- She's also very similar to Grunt - both are engineered to be the perfect [thing], and both feel insecure over how much of their strength they were given through the actions of others rather than earning it themselves.
- Not So Stoic: Miranda's Ice Queen demeanor frequently crumbles throughout the course of the games, not the least of which would be during her loyalty mission, interactions with her sister, and her romance with Shepard.
- Not What I Signed Up For: When the Illusive Man makes clear his plan to keep intact the Collector base that liquefied millions of innocent people alive (albeit for arguably compelling reasons), and Shepard defies him in front of Miranda, she sides with Shepard and resigns from Cerberus.
- She will also show signs of drifting away from the organization if Shepard does preserve the Collector base, telling them that she had never questioned her loyalty to Cerberus until the Suicide Mission happened, and she even sounds a bit concerned about what Cerberus will do with the base.
- Older Than They Look: Thanks to her genetic enhancements, she'll easily live to half again the age most humans will reach. By now, this is 150 — she's 35 right now.
- Opposite-Sex Clone: Subverted. Her father intended her to be this, but she ended up becoming a very different person from him.
- Overshadowed by Awesome: If befriended, she admits to feeling somewhat insecure around Shepard. She explains that because she was designed to be "perfect", all of her victories are simply products of genetic engineering that allows her to excel at everything. Shepard on the other hand, is simply a normal human being, who somehow manages to achieve the impossible due to sheer willpower, because that is who they are!
- Pay Evil unto Evil: Many consider her shooting Wilson in cold blood to be pretty ruthless, but it should be remembered that he betrayed her and tried to kill her, Shepard, Jacob, and everyone else on the facility. He succeeded on the latter, too.
- Perpetual Smiler: Though likely a case of Special Effects Failure it's worth nothing that she wears a happy face a lot. Even when gunning down a traitor early in the game, or laying into Joker after the Collectors invaded the Normandy, or when Shepard steps in when she fights Kai Leng.
- Even her battle quotes sound more like she's playing a game rather than fighting for her life.
- Pet the Dog: To her credit, Miranda pets as many dogs as she kicks, especially when 3 comes around.
- If present when Tali makes clear her intentions to sabotage the suit of a volus who's being a racist Jerkass, Miranda, though viewing it as "juvenile" also says that it's "certainly deserved".
- After her loyalty mission is completed, Miranda apologizes to Shepard for her earlier Jerkass attitude towards him/her. If Shepard also stopped her from shooting Niket, she accepts that her trusting him wasn't so much of a bad thing, even if it backfired on her.
- If not romanced, Miranda will tell Shepard before they go through the Omega-4 relay that it has been an honor to serve with him/her. She even salutes!
- Her interactions (and general relationship with) her twin sister Oriana.
- When asked by Shepard what she thought of Jack's torture at Cerberus' hands, she does not hesitate to say that it was without question a mistake. Of course, she also refuses to admit this to Jack herself and maintains that it wasn't really Cerberus.
- She concludes on her own that keeping the Collector Base intact is wrong and wholeheartedly supports Shepard's decision to blow it to hell.
- She apologizes to Shepard for wanting to put a control chip in his/her head and also says that she's always regretted it, realizing how close she came to becoming her father.
- She warns people about her father's husk facility on Horizon and tries to save as many people as she can.
- By Citadel, she seems to have mended her rift with Jack and is even capable of laughing, acknowledging that some of Jack's ribbing toward her is Actually Pretty Funny, and sharing a drink with her.
- Platonic Life Partners: With Jacob and a male Shepard who befriends her but doesn't romance her.
- Playing with Fire: Citadel adds Incinerate to her power set.
- Plot Armor: In 2, she can only die during the suicide mission if she's disloyal and you bring her to the final boss fight, or if she's disloyal and you get very, very unlucky when she's holding the line. If she is chosen as second squad's commander and gets shot, she will shrug it off, even if she's not loyal. This is mostly because she is depicted speaking in cutscenes at several points in the mission, and having her dead likely would've messed with the game's script.
- Raven Hair, Ivory Skin: She's much paler than most of the other inhabitants of The Verse, has jet-black hair, and is regarded as extraordinarily attractive. It helps that her default outfit is black and white.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Acts as The Blue Oni to the Red Oni in Jack (Hot-Blooded Biotic with anger issues) and Jacob (the Military Maverick)
- Redemption Equals Death: If she dies in 3.
- Rule of Symbolism: A subtle case in conversations with her. As Shepard keeps talking with her, the setting of the conversation goes from sitting in front of her desk, sitting beside her desk, on a sofa further inside her room, to her sitting on her bed. The location correlates with how close Shepard is to her.
- Sexy Walk: Natch. Even her idle pose looks like she just stopped in front of a catwalk.
- Shock and Awe: Overload.
- Self-Made Orphan: If she survives to the end of 3, she finally kills Henry Lawson along the way. Whether she lives past that depends on whether you warned her about Kai Leng, whether or not you charmed Henry, whether or not you gave her Alliance resources, and whether or not you romanced her and then broke up with her. Very much a Guide Dang It situation.
- Shoot the Dog: Jacob and Miranda serve as the foils/voice-of-reason towards Shepard. Miranda tends to support more ruthless actions that are beneficial to the mission as a whole; she's the mouthpiece of Cerberus and its mission statement.
- Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Literally. She's done her share of high profile internet dating. Hidden logs reveal her turning down many high profile suitors for some surprising and... not so surprising reasons.
- Has this relationship with a Paragon Male Shepard, if pursued.
- Slap-Slap-Kiss: Her relationship with Renegade Shepard, if one is pursued.
- Smug Super: Played straight then deconstructed and inverted.
- Space Clothes: Except in her alternate appearance pack armor.
- Spy Catsuit: Particularly her loyalty outfit. It is worth noting that the second appearance pack DLC takes pains to avert this; instead of form-fitting fabric and high heels, Miranda now wears armor very similar to the Medium armor from the first game, complete with combat boots and notably less emphasis on her curves. However, consider the fact that the Mass Effect 1 armors to which it emulates were still quite form-fitting.
- Starcrossed Lovers/Dating Catwoman: Her romance with Paragon Shepard until she resigns from Cerberus. She and Shepard are the first one again in 3 due to not seeing each other much but still loving and remaining faithful to one another. The extended cut even has an image of Miranda looking out at the stars if she was romanced.
- Sugar and Ice Personality: Miranda starts off as very cold and standoffish, and is called an Ice Queen by Wilson, but she warms up to Shepard considerably during the course of the game, especially if romanced. And of course there's the relationship she has with her sister, Oriana and also her good working relationship with Jacob, all of which suggest she is “sugar” to people who have gotten her trust, respect, and (possibly) love.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: With Jack in 2 and also Paragon Shepard initially.
- Tempting Fate: She introduces herself by saying she's "an excellent judge of character" and that she's "never wrong". Between her loyalty mission and the suicide mission, the universe seems to be keen on proving she's, in fact, far from perfect.
- Although her opinions in the suicide mission zig-zag between being this trope and subverting it. She's wrong about being a good candidate to hold up the biotic barrier, tempting fate, but she turns out to be right about being a good candidate to lead the fire team both times, despite Jack's or Garrus' objection.
- Thanks for the Mammary: In a very rare Gender Flip example, Miranda touches Male Shepard's muscular chest in a sudden rush of emotion. She actually seems to enjoy it.
- This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!: If Shepard stops Miranda from killing Niket, he'll have a Heel–Face Turn, only to be killed in cold blood by Enyala. This earns an angry "You'll pay for that, BITCH!" exclamation from Miranda, giving her a blast of biotic energy.
- Token Good Teammate: Of Cerberus, albeit not as much as Jacob and Kelly.
- Too Clever by Half: As Miranda and her sister were Designer Babies engineered by their megalomaniacal Truly Single Parent to be Born Winners, Instant Expert TV Genius barely begins to describe her capabilities. Lawson drops in on Shepard's resurrection without any knowledge of the process and becomes the project's leader through sheer ability in less than a week. Of course, being unfamiliar with failure, she never sees her mistakes coming: her statement that "any biotic could be a Barrier Warrior" is technically true but without using either Jack or Samara will get an ally killed because only they aren't exhausted by the end and able to blast away Swarm and Collectors following them. She's actually cursed with being aware of this trope, resulting in an inferiority complex — she attributes all her successes to her father's design, and only takes credit for her failures.
Shepard: Sounds like you were designed to be perfect.
Miranda: Maybe, but I'm not. I'm still human. I do make mistakes. And when I do, the consequences are severe.
- Took a Level in Kindness:
- A bit by the end of 2, more so if romanced. A lot by the end of 3, where she tries to warn as many people on Horizon as she can about a Husk facility masquerading as a refugee camp, and goes to extraordinary lengths to save her sister. A pretty far cry from the human supremacist from the start of 2.
- Can even bury the hatchet with Jack in the Citadel DLC for 3... and not in her back!
- Truly Single Parent: She doesn't have a mother. She was designed from her father's chromosomes mixed with a mishmash of female DNA.
- Transhuman: Without the biotics, she may just qualify for "peak human". But glowing misty blue and smashing people to and fro against bulkheads with a flick of the wrist puts her in this trope.
- Ultimate Lifeform: BioWare uses Miranda to explore the entire concept of the perfect human. She's unbelievably gorgeous, brilliant and skilled. She is those things because her father, an egotistical prick, designed her that way in a lab. Miranda is tortured by all of those gifts, seeing in them constant evidence of her father's influence. Other companions belittle her for being too perfect, and she laments that her engineered skills means she owns nothing about herself.
Miranda: The only thing I can take credit for are my mistakes.
- Undying Loyalty: Ultimately subverted in 2, where she resigns from Cerberus after at last realizing that they go too far. Eventually played straight with Shepard though, despite the initial tension between the two.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: With Jack in the Citadel DLC, for given value of "best buds". Neither of them would ever admit to liking each other, but neither seems too eager to seek out other company, either. Miranda even (albeit somewhat sarcastically) refers to her and Jack as being "the best of friends".
- We Have Reserves: Her first Kick the Dog moment in a nutshell. Averted later during the Suicide Mission if anyone dies though. She sounds choked up when she tells Shepard that they have to keep moving and even Jack's death seems to sadden her.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: A bit of one when with Cerberus.
- We Will Have Perfect Health in the Future: Miranda's projected lifespan is 50% longer than the already-enhanced human norm. She could conceivably hit her 200s.
- What Is This Thing You Call "Love"?: Her romance with Shepard seems to suggest this, as if kissed she will say afterwards "what the hell was that?", and later, when struggling with her feelings for Shepard, confesses that she doesn't know why she feels the way she does for him, and attempts to rationalize it before Shepard convinces her that it's more.
Miranda: What idiotic bunch of hormones thought that now would be a great time for love?
- What You Are in the Dark: She never had any intention of making herself known to Oriana, in spite of the extraordinary lengths she's gone to protect her from their father. It takes some encouragement from Shepard to convince her otherwise.
Shepard: She doesn't need any details, but would it really be so bad for her to know she has a sister who loves her?
- Wide-Eyed Idealist: Concerning Cerberus she's almost as bad as Kelly. Her views of the group is extremely idealistic, and she even claims that the Illusive Man is humanity's best advocate, almost making one wonder just how aware she is of the atrocities Cerberus tends to commit. Fortunately she gets her eyes opened at the end of the second game.
- Particularly notable is her claim that the Husks at the Cerberus facility you can shut down in 1 were "already dead"...except they were that way because Cerberus killed them all. Since Shepard knows this, it's unlikely Miranda was lying to him/her, suggesting she may have been lied to herself.
- Possibly regarding the experiments on Pragia. It's very vague what the Teltin facility was hiding; it could have been the nature of the experiments, or it could have been something completely different. Miranda quick to conclude that they were shut down on ethical standards when the IM learned the truth, but Jack isn't convinced. Given the IM's tendency to be extremely involved in every ongoing project, her scepticism that he wasn't aware they were experimenting on children is probably justified.
- Woman in White: Her default look.
- Working with the Ex: She headhunted Jacob for Cerberus, and it's suggested they had something at one point, but there's not much tension.
- You Are Better Than You Think You Are: What Shepard can ultimately convince her of. Both in terms of her ability and morality.
Shepard: Your spirit and personality are what make you great. It's what makes anyone great.
Miranda: That's kind of you. I'm not sure I believe you, but thanks for saying it.
"No surprise, Mordin acts superior to everyone. Like he's got tenure at FU."Salarian doctor. Former member of salarian Special Tasks Group. Recruited by Shepard to combat Collector technology.
— Joker's description
Voiced by: Michael Beattie (2), William Salyers (3)
- Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene: Personal mission involves one. In which Mordin considers actions. Reasons for becoming Atoner also stated. Done fairly well.
- Affectionate Nickname: Referred to by Urdnot Wrex as "Pyjak". Don't know whether to be insulted or honoured...
- Amazing Freaking Grace: Recording of him singing this on his Citadel DLC datapad. "Still prefer patter songs."
- Angst? What Angst?: Heavily affected by loyalty mission, fine by return to Normandy. Salarians possess short lifespans, learn to deal with emotional burdens efficiently. Came to terms during shuttle ride. Concern appreciated, however.
- Third game suggests not as "over it" as previously claimed, when chance to finish genophage cure is presented.
- Asexuality: Salarian. No sex drive. Gives Shepard The Talk anyway.
- The Atoner: Upgraded genophage. Perfect reason to atone for.
- Ultimately zigzagged. Considers act inexcusable. Also considers act inevitable and necessary.
- In Mass Effect 3, Fight to save female krogan. Cure the genophage. Do what needs to be done. *sharp inhale* Proud posthumously.
- On other hand, personal guilt may be causing rash decisions. Wreav dangerous and without Eve to stabilize him, likely to repeat Krogan Rebellions. *sharp inhale* Trick krogan, fake death, get salarian support, help with Crucible. Cure genophage when Reapers dealt with.
- Badass Bookworm: Salarian doctor. Among smartest ever. Also highly skilled killer.
- Broken cranial horn and facial scars due to attack by Krogan. Stabbed Krogan with pitchfork through eye. Continued with mission despite injuries.
- Badass Grandpa: Elderly by salarian standards. Chronologically same age as Shepard. Find this amusing.
- Badass Labcoat: Wears labcoat over commando gear. *sharp inhale* Awesome.
- Badass Normal: Weaker than normal humans, and on team composed of mostly of superhumans and psychics. Still managed to kill a krogan with farming equipment.
- Bald of Awesome: Salarians have no hair. Also quite awesome.
- Because You Can Cope: Paragon solution if loyalty lost in Dummied Out material.
- Beige Prose: Naturally. Tried...to...slow...down...no no no can't do it. Too much to do.
- Berserk Button: Playing with Syringes. Hates reckless science. Especially pointless wastes of life.
- Also metaphors.
- Also can't stand the thought of Creative Sterility. Species cannot evolve without art in culture. No art, no life. Collectors have no art, can barely be considered truly alive.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Ran clinic on Omega. Mercs tried to extort a protection racket. They all ended up dead. Was gone five minutes. Hung their bodies on display. *Sharp inhale*. Never bothered again.
- Bizarre Alien Biology: Salarians need little sleep. Have almost perfect recall of any learned information. Egg-laying, have little understanding of romantic interaction.
- Black Eyes of Evil: Averted. Salarian eyes black, but not evil. Merely ruthless.
- Bond One-Liner: Non-lethal example, since victim was merely obstinate STG agent, not actually an enemy.
Mordin: Objection noted.
- Catch Phrase: "X is/likely to be...problematic."
- "Had to be me. Someone else might have gotten it wrong."
- Celibate Hero: Inherent to salarian biology. Quite knowledgeable regardless.
- Combat Medic: Technically. Performs medical research on ship, on ground Shepard provides in-game medic abilities.
- Completely Missing the Point: Gilbert and Sullivan's Modern Major General song describes individual skilled universally except chosen profession.
- Cool Old Guy: 30 years old. Salarian life expectancy forty. Roughly same age as Shepard. Find this amusing.
- Crazy-Prepared: Ready to give The Talk for any kind of interspecies romance. Ran clinic on Omega — advice likely necessary there. Many species, many tastes.
- Crisis of Faith: Studied many religions as means to atone. Looked for answers. Found questions. Declares Reincarnation popular with salarians. Deeply spiritual still. Shepard expresses surprise.
Shepard: I didn't expect spirituality from you, Mordin.
Mordin: Genophage modification project altered millions of lives. Then saw results. Ego, humility, juxtaposition. Frailty of life. Size of universe. Explored religions after work was completed. Different races. No answers. Many questions.
Shepard: Sounds like you were trying to deal with a guilty conscience. The doctor who killed millions.
- Cultured Badass: Believes culture needs art. Otherwise not culture. Actively fears Creative Sterility. Uses as evidence for Collectors not being... alive. No art, no expression. No expression, no soul. *sharp inhale* Also did Gilbert and Sullivan.
- Dead Guy Junior: If Wrex is the clan leader and the Genophage is cured, Wrex will honor Mordin's sacrifice by naming one of his children (maybe a girl) after him.
- Deadly Doctor:
- Thought harmless, did you?
- Subversion, actually. Has killed many times, but never with medicine (says so himself during loyalty mission). Shepard can challenge whether upgraded genophage killing with medicine or not. Likely asked himself same question in past.
- Paralysing nerve gas followed by lethal projectile to cranium is acceptable, however.
- Deadpan Snarker: Found several surveillance bugs. Destroyed some. Returned expensive one to Miranda.
- Death Faked for You: If Wrex and Eve dead, can be convinced to fake genophage cure and help with Crucible project. Wreav too dangerous as leader without Eve to stabilize him. Pretend to have died in explosion.
- Dead Man Writing: From Citadel. In event of death, STG colleagues to deliver datapad to Shepard. Contains greatest hits. Hope Shepard finds them informative, amusing, educational...
- Determinator: If Shepard forced to shoot him. Manages to crawl toward console despite lethal wound. Almost reaches console before collapsing. Makes it further than replacement if dead in second game.
- Dirty Business: Guilt for actions major part of character.
- Dummied Out: Argument with Grunt, likely about genophage.
- Dying Moment of Awesome:
- Even Evil Has Standards:
- Hates unnecessary waste of life. Only kills problematic people. Always careful with medicine. Never carries out research on species capable of calculus unless subject volunteers. Protege... *sharp inhale* not so principled.
- If taken on Jack loyalty mission, repeatedly disgusted by surroundings. Experimenting on children not acceptable.
- Evilutionary Biologist: Subverts trope. Generally well-intentioned. Strong ethical guidelines. Fairly ruthless regardless.
Mordin: No testing on species capable of calculus. Simple rule. Never broke it.
- Faking the Dead: Third game. If Eve dead and Urdnot Wreav sole krogan leader, can be convinced krogan not yet ready for cure. Will disappear to work on Crucible. Shepard lets krogan believe everything went as planned.
- Famous Last Words: Has spoken alternative dialogue to Killed Mid-Sentence entry, during final moments, after successfully releasing genophage cure:
Mordin: Genophage cured. Krogan free. New beginning... For all of us...
- If talked to Shepard about singing Gilbert and Sullivan, will sing "Scientist Salarian" song in final moments.
- Fire, Ice, Lightning: Incinerate, check. Cryo Blast, check. Neural Shock? Close enough!
- In the third game, proves capable of inflicting electric shocks with omni-tool. Only in cutscene, though.
- The Fettered: Believes strongly in scientific ethics, refuses to experiment on sapient life.
- Film Noir: Authored novel in this style. Protagonist, lone STG operative on a mission. Broke number one rule on Omega... in more ways than one. Semi-autobiographical? Leave up to audience to decide.
- Gibbering Genius: Dictates thought processes in real time. Avoids infinitives. Irrelevant if heard saying inconvenient thought out loud.
- Glass Cannon: Three skills, purely offensive. Also low defence rating. Death during suicide mission likely. Preferable choice for escorting Chakwas and other crew members back to Normandy.
- Heroic B.S.O.D.: Upon discovering pupil performed tests. Dangerous and reckless, even if misguided.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Third game, salarian sabotage to Shroud revealed. Stay behind to fix it. Die in the process. *sharp inhale* Conscience clear.
- I Did What I Had to Do: Subverted. Insists this repeatedly during loyalty mission. Obviously trying to convince self, not companions.
- Still resolute it was right action. Even against Shepard's best arguments. Invokes Grey and Gray Morality. Actions not unjustified.
- Worth remembering alternative was genocide. "Save galaxy from krogan. Save krogan from galaxy."
- Also made peace with self after mission. Mind clear. Hands washed. No guilt. Free to focus on task at hand.
- Until sequel. True guilt revealed... and again overcome.
- Insistent Terminology: Genophage sterility plague. Not murder.
- Insufferable Genius: Some hints of this. For example, when joining Crucible in 3: "Exciting atmosphere, galaxy's most brilliant minds working together towards common goal. Read their solutions to engineering problems on the way over. Looking forward to correcting them in person."
- Ironic Echo: If survived ME2, can die while curing genophage in ME3. Uses same lines about how others would have gotten it wrong.
- If It's You, It's Okay: No interest in Shepard romantically. If ever explored, Shepard optimal. Either sex. Ahem.
- It's Personal: Deliberately invoked in order to anthropomorphize fight against Collectors and Reapers.
Mordin: Hard to imagine galaxy. Too many people. Faceless. Statistics. Easy to depersonalize. Good when doing unpleasant work. For this fight, want personal connection. Can't anthropomorphize galaxy. But can think of favorite nephew. Fighting for him.
- Keet: Described as being like hamster on caffeine. Salarian metabolism much faster than most other species', but fast even for salarians.
- Kick the Dog: Questions Paragon Shepard's willingness to spare batarians who threatened assistant, sketchy asari neurospecialist as well. Second chances noble, not pragmatic, open possibilities for future betrayals. Correct about Rana Thanoptis. Should have killed her.
- Killed Mid-Sentence: " I am the very model of a-- BOOM
- Kill It with Ice: Uses omnitool to freeze enemies solid. Thaw quickly, but bodies fragile!
- Kill It with Fire: Uses omnitool to incinerate enemies. Incredibly deadly. "Flammable! Or inflammable? Forget which. Doesn't matter!" (Same thing. Really doesn't matter.)
- Lampshade Hanging:
- Meeting Shepard for first time. Attempt to work out why Spectre is here. Renegade interrupt offered. If not taken Paragon interrupt suggested. On board Normandy third interrupt option available. [sharp inhale]. Allows Shepard to interrupt when heard enough.
- Alternatively, can ignore interrupts. Made up for with hilarious scene:
Shepard: Do you ever pause for breath?
Mordin: Sorry. I'll... try... to... slow... down. No-no-no. Can't do it. No time.
- Light is Good: Wears white. In keeping with doctoral nature. Also good. Help people. Cure genophage.
- Mad Scientist: Not mad. Usually irritable. Sometimes affable.
- Mad Scientist Laboratory: Granted personal lab on Normandy. Cerberus spared no expense. Removed by Alliance during Normandy retrofit. Pity. Medical Bay will have to suffice. Proves convenient by that time, however. After all, working on genophage cure.
- Major General Song: "I am the very model of a scientist salarian."
- Man in White: Wears primarily white. Makes sense. Doctor.
- The Matchmaker: Tries to hook Eve up with Garrus. Scars, intelligence, aggression. Would've made good match for Eve. Eve declined repeatedly.
- Measuring the Marigolds: Planned to walk on beach, collect seashells on retirement. Shepard asserted would go crazy within hour. Amended plans to run tests on seashells.
- Morally Ambiguous Doctorate: Good but conflicted. Did what had to do. Necessary, but still regrets.
- Motor Mouth: Speaks too fast when met in Omega. Can be halted with renegade interrupt.
- Murder Is the Best Solution: Mission important. Talking takes too long. At least one way to help people.
- My God, What Have I Done?: Horrified by personal work on genophage. Still feel it had to be done.
- My Greatest Failure: Treats work on genophage as this, though not failure, strictly speaking. Justifies it incessantly. Had to be done. No other option. Only correct and logical course of action...
Mordin: I made a MISTAKE! Focused on big picture. Big picture made of little pictures. Too many variables!
- My Sensors Indicate You Want to Tap That: Cross-species body language awkward; makes for easy misunderstandings. Movements of Shepard's lower eyelids suggestive by salarian standards. Good to clear air.
- Never Trust a Trailer: Some fans confused initially. Felt Fight For The Lost trailers implied Mordin Clint Eastwood style lone ranger. In game, quickly proven wrong.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Narrowly averted. Had cure ready for Joker's Vrolik Syndrome. Luckily double checked in middle of night. Discovered that humans do not have two livers! *Sharp inhale* Turns out would have caused liver failure if implemented. Imagine this would have been... problematic.
- Paragon Shepard repeatedly insists this case with the genophage modification project. Vehemently disagree! Had to be done!
- Noodle Incident: Lethal proficiency with farming equipment. Never explained until discovery of Shadow Broker database; Skinny salarian doctor killed charging krogan by driving pitchfork through head. Disappoints fans, who imagined combine harvester
- No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup: Make no mistake. Brilliant scientist. Not perfect, though. Seeker swarm countermeasure developed hastily. Tested only on Horizon.
Shepard: We're groundside. Mordin, you sure those armor upgrades will protect us from the seeker swarms?
Mordin: Certainty impossible. But in limited numbers, should confuse detection, make us invisible to swarms. In theory.
Squadmate: In theory?
Mordin: Experimental technology. Only test is contact with seeker swarms. Look forward to seeing if you survive!
- "Not Important to This Episode" Camp: Not present for Citadel DLC, even if survived Suicide Mission and Tuchanka. Too busy working on Crucible project and survival classified. Maybe next time?
- Odd Friendship: With genophage-immune krogan female. Call her Eve. Part of reason wish to cure genophage.
- Also eventually establishes one with Wrex. Is mourned by Wrex after dying for genophage cure
- Omnidisciplinary Scientist: Primary focus biomedical. Constantly forays into other sciences. Mechanical expertise surprising. He is the very model of a scientist salarian.
- One exception: limited experience with security systems. Assignment as Tech Specialist unwise.
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Pausing while speaking. Short succinct statements. Both likely indicators of serious topics.
- Has two in the third game, depending on decision whether or not to cure Genophage:
Shepard: I'm sorry, Mordin.Mordin: I'm not. Had to be me... Someone else might have gotten it wrong.
- If Genophage is to be cured, this dialogue between him and Shepard before they part ways for good:
Mordin: I made a mistake!
- If genophage cure was to be sabotaged instead:
- Has two in the third game, depending on decision whether or not to cure Genophage:
- Pet the Dog: Loyalty mission. Packed with these moments. Notably absolutely horrified at dead female krogan test subject. States that species doesn't matter. Acknowledges work as a cause.
Shepard: I didn't expect you to be disturbed by the sight of a dead krogan.
Mordin: [surprised] What? Why? Because of genophage work? Irrelevant. No, causative.
- The Professor: Nature of mission irrelevant. Know something about strange thing.
- Retired Badass: Formerly served in special forces. Now doctor. Return to combat not a problem.
- "Would have liked to run tests on the seashells."
- In Extended Cut, if alive, spends final years finding the time to cure the genophage.
- Sacrificial Lion: In third game. End of first story act, first major character to die. Clear sign no-one else safe. *inhale* No-one. If killed by Shepard, good sign of how far s/he has fallen.
- Science Hero: Uses vast scientific knowledge to help Shepard against both Collectors and Reapers.
- Seen It All: Has encountered much in the galaxy. Little surprise. Reaction to Javik: "Ah, a Prothean. Excellent."
- Self-Demonstrating Article: Terse talker. Speaks in sentence fragments. Emulated in this character trope list.
- Sherlock Scan: Good at analysis. Displayed when first met Shepard. Deduces Cerberus affiliation even if not explicitly stated. Recognizes EDI as AI just as quickly.
- Shipper on Deck: Ready to offer medical advice for Shepard and their romantic partner. Available to offer gels and instruction manuals for possible cross-species intercourse.
- Admits worries about implications of Joker/EDI however.
- Knew that krogan females find scars attractive. Tried to set "Eve" up with Garrus Vakarian. Apparently she wasn't interested. Will do this even if Shepard in relationship with Garrus. Awkward.
- Shoot the Dog:
- Has no problem killing one person. To save ten others, of course. Even created new strain of genophage. Krogan adapted to previous one. Does feel regretful about the latter. Started clinic to atone. All life precious.
Mordin: Lots of ways to help people. Sometimes heal patients; sometimes execute dangerous people. Either way helps.
- Also at end of loyalty mission. Discover former STG agent curing genophage. Must be killed. Can be stopped with Paragon interrupt.
Mordin: No! Not a murderer. Thank you, Shepard.
- Possibly on receiving end in third game. If not convinced to go along with sabotage, Renegade Shepard forced to shoot him to stop genophage cure.
- Has no problem killing one person. To save ten others, of course. Even created new strain of genophage. Krogan adapted to previous one. Does feel regretful about the latter. Started clinic to atone. All life precious.
- The Smart Guy: Runs tech lab. Cannot purchase upgrades without him aboard.
- Sophisticated as Hell: Noted in Shadow Broker Dossier. Example adequate:
"Specialist Solus suggests Commander Kirrahe has a foreign object in his cloacanote [...] suggests that cloacal obstruction is in fact Kirrahe's cranium.note "
- The Spock: Usually goes with more logical path. Belief in killing those who present themselves as threat. Deconstructed during Loyalty mission. Genophage involvement becomes source of conflict.
- Squishy Wizard: Skills quite useful in combat, but shields and health quite weak. Survival requires support.
- Despite special forces training and career, implied to possess weakest combat capabilities of any of the ground team. Lowest combat score and survival priority of any loyal teammate in holding the line against the Collectors. Lower than even Jack and Tali, who both are specialized at fighting enemies other than Collectors. Escorted duty recommended.
- The Talk: Shown here, on Interspecies Romance. Try not to "ingest". Offers for all romances. Promises to "probe" Jacob/Miranda. Cerberus could have bugs anywhere...
- Third game takes this step further. Offers Joker advice on proposed robosexual liaison with EDI. All part of profession.
- Technobabble: Constantly. Combines with Terse Talker, Motor Mouth. Some complain of difficulty understanding. Get doctorate! Have real conversation!
- Terse Talker: Talks fast and short. First part natural to salarians. Second part peculiar to himself. Likes Techno Babble dialogue. Always Thinking Out Loud. Reading Self-Demonstrating Article right now. *sharp inhale* May help you understand.
- Thinking Out Loud: Constantly. Annoying to krogan female in 3.
Mordin: Who's that? Pilot? No. Synthesized voice. Simulated emotional inflections. Could it be... no. Maybe. Have to ask. Is that an AI?
- Unwanted Harem: Found attractive by many species. Bemused at this. Saved many lives. May be desire for Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex with savior.
- "If wanted to try human, would try [Shepard]." Shepard's sex irrelevant.
- Utility Party Member: No non-combat gameplay skills in series, but still fits role aboard Normandy. Mediocre squadmate, barely useful in Suicide Mission. However, technical expertise useful for combat and ship upgrades, and for seeker swarm countermeasure vital to surviving on Horizon.
- Verbal Tic: Talks in sentence fragments, thinks aloud, Techno Babble, answers own questions, One-Liner, No time to breathe, Salarians Are As Mayflies, entire race Workaholics, *sharp inhale*... work even harder.
- Must note. No other salarians share tic. Unique to Mordin.
- Refers to self with first-person pronouns very rarely unless singing, mostly when statements would be nonsensical without an "I". Usually can, does avoid it. Happens if Shepard questions decision to cure genophage after working on it for so long.
Mordin: I made a MISTAKE!
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Mutual respect, mutually derogatory banter with Kirrahe evident in STG mission report, spent whole time referring to the other as a cloaca. Mocks Kirrahe's constant "Hold the line" speeches, nevertheless has deep respect for former captain.
- Friendship with Shepard has aspects of this. Mutually respect each other. However, recognise Shepard often becomes exasperated with salarian thought process. Permit them to interrupt when they've heard enough.
- We Are as Mayflies: Inverted. Salarian lifespans much shorter than human ones. He himself already 30. Human equivalent 116.note Will die soon, even if survive suicide mission and Tuchanka arc in 3.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Believes past actions necessary. Feels guilty regardless.
- What Could Have Been: Invoked. Would have liked to run tests on the seashells planned on collecting.
- What the Hell, Hero?: In the third game, realizes that genophage cure was sabotaged. Also that Shepard knew, said nothing.
- The Wonka: Thinks out loud. Mental processes seemingly random. Techno Babbles constantly. Described as "Hamster on coffee".
- Would Be Rude to Say "Genocide": Absolutely refuses to admit that Genophage was a slow genocide in second game. Eventually realizes being wrong in third game.
- X Marks the Hero: Apparently received scar from krogan killed with pitchfork. Ruined right cranial horn.
- You No Take Candle: Obviously highly intelligent — infinitives waste time!
"Zaeed is like you, but takes checks. As long as it's not my money, we're good."A character who is only available through the Cerberus Network DLC content, free with every new copy of the game. He is the best bounty hunter in the galaxy and has been hired to help Shepard.
Voiced by: Robin Sachs
- Anti-Hero: A Nominal Hero in Mass Effect 2. Becomes an Unscrupulous Hero in Mass Effect 3; he's started restricting his ruthlessness to Cerberus, who definitely deserve it.
- Bad Boss: It's hinted that his willingness to sacrifice anyone and his lack of charisma was a major factor in the Blue Suns betraying him.
- Badass Grandpa: He's such a hardass that Javik suspects he's a Prothean in disguise, and the two of them discuss conquering the galaxy once the Reapers are gone. Subverted in that he's actually only 40, but still really badass. Though this age may be a mistake, unless he managed to pull off all of his accomplishments in a ridiculously short time.
- Badass Normal: A regular, mostly unaugmented human, and one of the most effective fighters on the team thanks to his gear and great skill in weapons of all kinds. In the 'Hold the Line' sequence on the Suicide Mission, he actually has the second highest combat rating fighting the Collectors of any team member, despite most of them possessing various superhuman attributes he doesn't. The only one higher is Grunt.
- One of his war stories is how he killed a krogan commander with a knife. Krogan, it should be noted, are strong enough to bench press cars and tough enough that bullets may occasionally outright bounce off their faces. Damn.
- Berserk Button: Don't call his fixation with taking Vido down a 'grudge' or imply that he needs to let go.
- The Big Guy: He, Grunt and Garrus have the highest "hold the line" scores. Their base value is higher than any other loyal squadmate — with loyalty, they're each worth four points. He also has the second highest survival priority of any squadmate in that sequence, just above Garrus and below Grunt.
- Bounty Hunter: Best in the business.
Warden Kuril: I got sick of seeing prisoners escape justice. Bounty hunters... aren't reliable.
Zaeed: Then you aren't hiring the right ones.
- Catchphrase: The man likes to say "Goddamn", that's for sure.
- Cluster F-Bomb: Goes into this when playing an arcade game. A claw machine to be precise. While trying to win a plushie toy. For an asari girl.
- Cool Old Guy: In casual conversation, he'll tell stories about his previous adventures.
- Cold Sniper: Very effective with an Incisor, and utterly detached from his deeds.
- Crack Pairing: In-Universe, he tries and fails to hook up with Samara.
- Deadpan Snarker: Kind of a default way of stating things for him. Among other things, he can say an asari ex-girlfriend selling him out to the Blood Pack mercenaries "put a sour note on the whole relationship".
- Demoted to Extra: While all of the Mass Effect 2 squadmates suffer from this in 3, Zaeed and Kasumi suffer the most from it, likely due to being DLC characters.
- Determinator: He credits his survival of a headshot to this.
Zaeed: A stubborn enough person will survive just about anythin'.
- The Dog Bites Back: After negotiations with a Cerberus contract go sour post-2, he starts taking jobs which disrupt their operations.
- Downloadable Content: Zaeed makes no appearance in the vanilla game.
- Dummied Out: Apparently, it was planned so it would be possible for him be taught proper squad tactics in the suicide mission, allowing the specialist to live and surviving the long walk if he's the fire team leader.
Zaeed: Suppression fire. Something comes through the door, kill it.
- Establishing Character Moment: When you first meet him, he's roughing up a batarian who repeatedly claims to be innocent for the crime Zaeed is capturing him for. After you're done talking to him, the batarian tries to run, so Zaeed casually shoots him in the leg.
- Even Evil Has Standards:
- He's hardly a pleasant man, but what ethics he has are largely responsible for his "leaving" the Blue Suns (he disapproved of their hiring of batarians, whom he saw as terrorists), and he expresses disgust at Cerberus' imprisonment of biotic children if taken along on Jack's loyalty mission. He also dislikes corporate security, preferring to work for his contracts and care who he's killing, and doesn't find torture worth it. Also, take him with you whenever the Collectors are involved and he is clearly disgusted and horrified by what he sees.
Zaeed: "Cheaper labor," he said. "Goddamn terrorists," I said.
- Speaking of Cerberus, this is all he has to say on how Cerberus offered him a new contract just as they went off the deep end between 2 and 3.
- If brought to Jacob's loyalty mission, upon seeing what Ronald Taylor has done, Zaeed states that anyone who does this to their own men deserves a knife to the spine. Though if you talk to him afterwards on the ship, he's less judgmental.
- In 3, apart from working against Cerberus, he's also very disgusted when Din Korlack tries to bargain when lives are at stake and he has barely anything to gain.
- He's hardly a pleasant man, but what ethics he has are largely responsible for his "leaving" the Blue Suns (he disapproved of their hiring of batarians, whom he saw as terrorists), and he expresses disgust at Cerberus' imprisonment of biotic children if taken along on Jack's loyalty mission. He also dislikes corporate security, preferring to work for his contracts and care who he's killing, and doesn't find torture worth it. Also, take him with you whenever the Collectors are involved and he is clearly disgusted and horrified by what he sees.
- Evil Counterpart/Foil/Shadow Archetype: To Thane Krios and Urdnot Wrex.
- According to Joker, Zaeed is Shepard if they were Only in It for the Money.
- Zaeed is also one to Garrus, with their loyalty missions almost being perfect mirrors of each other. Both are searching for the men who wronged them and left them for dead, both suffered facial wounds as a result of that betrayal and both are willing to put Revenge Before Reason, unless Shepard either talks them down or chooses to let them indulge in it.
- Exactly What I Aimed At: Pulled off during his loyalty mission, although it isn't quite as successful as he'd hoped.
Zaeed: Burn, you son-of-a-bitch!
- Friend to All Children: Despite his rough exterior and potty mouth, he still had time to help a random kid in a crane game when Shepard meets him again in the Citadel DLC. One of his stories about his old mercenary days involves him and his squad rescuing an eight year old escaped slave.
- Get a Room!: Zaeed's reaction when FemShep and Garrus start flirting while he and Garrus are boobytrapping Shepard's apartment during the Citadel DLC.
Zaeed: Oh, go get a room. God knows this place has enough of them.
- Glass Eye: One green, the other one a replacement cybernetic prosthesis for the eye that (likely) got blown out when he was shot in the head.
- Good Scars, Evil Scars: His extensive scars make it immediately clear he's not a morally squeaky-clean individual.
- Guttural Growler: Zaeed's voice is very rough.
- He Who Fights Monsters: Paragon Shepard actually punches him and holds a gun to his head in order to hammer this point into Zaeed. By wanting to let innocents die in order to satisfy his need for vengeance, he's become no better than Vido.
- Heel–Face Turn: In Mass Effect 3, after some "bad negotiations" with Cerberus, he's been actively taking jobs working against them.
- Hidden Depths: In the Citadel DLC, if part 1 of the party was calm and part 2 was lively, and Samara is also invited (who he is also trying to put moves on), he says something surprisingly poetic about an... abstract piece of art in the dining room. Samara more or less labels him with this trope.
- In the same DLC, if he's the only one invited, he'll tell a FemShep that he always thought she was beautiful.
- I Call It "Vera": Jessie, his old rifle. His attachment to it is quite strong, despite the fact that it 's been broken beyond repair for five years.
- A message on Liara's information terminal in the third game shows that he's bought a parts kit for a discontinued assault rifle, indicating that he knows the Reaper War is going to be so bad that he'll need the most reliable weapon he ever owned by his side again.
- Ink-Suit Actor: Resembles his voice actor Robin Sachs◊.
- Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: He describes the best way to get a krogan to talk: Stick a knife behind his forehead plate in just the right spot and pry it right off. The thought of it apparently drives them mad. In the Renegade end of his quest in 3, you can suggest he try this on Korlack. All he actually has to do is crack his knuckles.
- The Jinx: He seems to have an unnatural tendency of getting people around him killed. Works as a subtle warning against choosing him as a fireteam leader on the Suicide Mission.
- Karmic Death: If Shepard leaves him to die on his loyalty mission, mostly because Shepard doesn't even kill him, just refuses to help him as he burns in the fire. The irony is noted by Shepard as well.
Shepard: You started this fire, Zaeed. It makes sense that you'd burn in it.
- Kick the Dog: His loyalty mission is basically just one long kick the dog moment, to the point that many fans view it as a Moral Event Horizon Crossing. In particular this line:
Zaeed: Let these people burn! Vido dies whatever the cost!
- Kill It with Fire: He gets powerful Inferno Grenades when you earn his loyalty.
- Lack of Empathy: Big time during his loyalty mission.
- Made of Iron: Survives a point-blank headshot.
- The Mean Brit: "Walk it off. A little poison never hurt anyone."
- Murder Is the Best Solution: His first solution to pretty much everything is violence. It backfired on him prior to the second game, and may hit him again if Shepard plays the cards wrong in his loyalty mission.
- The Neidermeyer: His stories and the Shadow Broker's info on him indicate that Zaeed was a horrible leader who was all too willing to let others die and not particularly well-liked by those he leads. This is a pretty big indicator that he's a poor squad leader in the endgame.
- Never My Fault: Somewhat implied from his war stories. On seeing a familiar weapon on the Citadel, he claims that the weapon was so good that its wielder took out half his squad. In general, most of his stories end with him noting the casualties nonchalantly, even when he was supposed to be the squad leader. Of course, it's still up to you whether you want a guy with this attitude leading your squad on the suicide mission.
- Normally, I Would Be Dead Now: He survived getting shot in the head at point-blank range purely by sheer determination.
Zaeed: A stubborn enough person can survive just about anything.
- Odd Friendship: He and Garrus bond over booby-trapping Shepard's apartment of all things!
- Slightly less odd when you consider how Garrus spent the two years after you stopped Sovereign (becoming a vigilante on Omega who pissed off all three of the mercenary groups) and the pride they take in their work
- Javik thinks he's a Prothean in disguise and they discuss conquering the galaxy together after the Reapers are gone. Note that Javik's interactions with most people of this cycle is to call them primitives and complain endlessly about their shortcomings.
- Old Soldier: He practically embodies this trope.
- One Last Job: The money he received from Cerberus as payment for joining Shepard's squad has made him seriously consider retirement. Either that or suicide via blowing his ship up near Omega.
- Optional Party Member: He's a DLC character, if you didn't get a new copy of the game. Otherwise he's a free download.
- Pet the Dog: In the Citadel DLC, he reveals what got him addicted to a skill crane game was trying to make a crying kid happy by winning her a toy. Though it seemed to be more of a matter of pride for him than altruism, given that he keeps at the machine long after the kid leaves, and hands the prize to a random bystander after winning rather than trying to find the kid again.
- Psycho for Hire: Albeit a much more subdued and refined version than most.
- He even gets a bit self-referential — he claims that the only people not to piss themselves when having a gun next to their heads are psychotic maniacs and trained killers. And they can be hard to discern sometimes.
- Rebel Relaxation: In his room on the ship and during the pre-suicide mission briefing; he's the only one not standing at the table, opting to slouch against a wall near the end of the room. His ending in the Extended Cut also shows him relaxing on a lawn chair after the war is over. With his beloved "Jessie" beside him.
- Redemption Equals Death: Possible in 3 if Zaeed wasn't loyal in 2. He dies saving ambassador Din Korlack from the other mercs who had been duped into thinking Din was still a Cerberus sympathizer.
- Turned into a Crowning Moment of Awesome for either him or Shepard if it was. He kills them all the SECOND Shepard asks.
- Retired Monster: He was once a very vicious merc and co-founded the Blue Suns. Though he hasn't stepped down too far — now he's a Bounty Hunter.
- Retirony: Played with. The Shadow Broker's intel reveals that Zaeed is contemplating retirement after finishing Shepard's mission and he is so annoyed by the thought that the best plan he came up with so far is invoking the trope himself, by committing a Suicide Attack on Omega.
- Retired Badass: If he makes it to the end of 3, his personal slide in the Extended Cut shows him kicking back on a deckchair somewhere, beer in hand. Guess he found someplace he could stand after all.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: His real motivation during his character quest, despite his initial claim that he's in it to liberate a factory of workers from the Blue Suns mercenary group, which he co-founded. It's possible for a Paragon Shepard to not only allow the target to escape in order to save the workers, but gain Zaeed's loyalty anyway in a scene that proves good is most definitely not soft and indecisive. As a bonus, he never brings it up again in the third game; presumably, he's learned to let that go, or at least get his priorities straight.
- Say My Name: If he's left to die on his loyalty mission.
- Serious Business: In the Citadel DLC, believe it or not, a claw-machine.
Zaeed: What could be more important than Zaeed Massani not getting bested by some fucking kid's game!?
- Shouting Shooter: In his loyalty mission, if you pick Paragon.
- Sir Swears-a-Lot: Not as much as Jack, but occasionally. Especially in the Citadel DLC after failing at a skill crane for too long.
- Sociopathic Hero: He has some amusing war stories, but during his loyalty mission, it becomes apparent that he's chillingly ruthless in his pursuit of vengeance. Hell, a lot of his stories are rather horrifying, which gets amplified by his even and detached manner of delivering them.
- Sole Survivor: All of his stories usually result in everyone in his squad but him dying, though rather than a testament to his skills, most of this seems to be more out of his ability to get others killed, either through bad luck or just tossing them under the fire. Keep this in mind when choosing fire team leaders during the suicide mission.
- In the second worst version of the Extended Cut version of the destroy ending in Mass Effect 3, several planets in the galaxy lie torn and barren from the war and several species are skirting on the edge of extinction. Meanwhile Zaeed is shown to be only one having a somewhat comfortable outcome, having apparently retired to a somewhat untouched, sunny corner of Earth.
- Tattoo as Character Type: He has a tattoo on his neck, visible when you recruit him. Like other members of that organization, it's a Blue Suns tattoo.
- Token Evil Teammate: Less than a freshly-recruited Jack, but more than Grunt or loyal Jack. In contrast to Tali, it's considerably more difficult to win his loyalty with the Paragon approach, which requires a persuade check.
- Took a Level in Kindness: Nowhere near to the extent of Jack or Miranda, but he's noticeably far more pleasant in 3, particularly in "Citadel".
- Unflinching Walk: During his loyalty mission (if you chose the Renegade path).
- What the Hell, Hero?: Gets this from Paragon Shepard in his loyalty mission. The first is a straight-up punch to the face. The second is pointing a gun at him and threatening to leave him to burn for being willing to do the same for civilian factory workers. This will actually earn his respect enough so that he'll still be loyal in the end.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Shepard can leave Zaeed to die during his loyalty mission if the player chooses. However, this requires 1) waiting until after the suicide mission to do his loyalty mission and 2) having at least two other surviving squadmates in addition to Zaeed.
- Younger Than They Look: You wouldn't believe this by looking at him, but according to the official website, he is only 40 years old.
- A rough life, and getting shot in the face, do this to you.
Secret Party MembersThe two secret party members have gotten their own page. Don't go there unless you don't care about spoilers. To find it, go to this page.
Guest Party Members
"Miranda? But you're..."One of the Cerberus medical officers working on the Lazarus Project. After everything goes to hell, he helps you out after you heal him. When you finally meet up with Miranda, she guns him down for being the traitor who caused this mess in the first place, thus continuing the Bioware tradition of early game sacrificial party members.
Voiced by: Steve Blum
- Asshole Victim: Of Miranda.
- Bald of Evil: Being a member of Cerberus is bad enough, but he's also working for the Shadow Broker to sabotage Project Lazarus.
- Beard of Evil: He's willing to sabotage Project Lazarus for money.
- Boom, Headshot: How he dies, courtesy of Miranda.
- Death by Materialism: When checking logs on the medical station, Wilson constantly complains that Cerberus pumped 4 billion credits into resurrecting Shepard, and he implies that he isn't getting paid enough. It makes it kind of clear why he betrays Cerberus and Miranda. Or not. It turns out it was because he was working with the Shadow Broker.
- Dirty Coward: Even when in your party, this is very apparent.
- The Engineer: One of his jobs with Cerberus.
- Guest-Star Party Member: He's killed at the end of the first mission. At least you get to see him in action, unlike poor Jenkins.
- Killed Mid-Sentence:
- Oh, Crap!: His reaction to hearing that Shepard was still alive after sabotaging the Mechs.
- He gets an even bigger one after running into Miranda again. Unfortunately for him, it was also a very short one.
- The Mole: He started the disaster that led to Shepard's early awakening, but you don't know who he was working for at first. He was working for the Shadow Broker.
- Playing with Syringes: He helps bring someone back from the dead.
- Turncoat: He betrays Cerberus for the Shadow Broker.
- Too Dumb to Live: He had no reason to think Cerberus would let him live after he betrayed them.