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Fanfic Recs: Mass Effect
I'm Commander Shepard, and these are my favorite fan fics on the internet.

Proof that the remaining 10% is worth holding the line for here.

These are recommendations made by Tropers for Mass Effect fanfics, all of which have to be signed to stay on the page. Feel free to add a fanfic of your own to the list, but remember to use the template found here.

Do warn when a fanfic may head into non-canon territory. Some people just don't like it, and as we all know, Shipping is Serious Business. Please also be aware that, due to recent content policy changes, works that are Porn Without Plot may not be linked to, including any work that is hosted on a certain meme.

You can also add to the current recommendations if you want. Refrain from posting Conversation in the Main Page though; that goes in the discussion page.


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    Authors and Websites 
Authors, and Websites

Melaradark

Sinvraal
  • Recommended by Echo Garrote, Damsel of Distress, Spark Moon, Universitas, Joysweeper, Estelindis, Lavanya Six
  • Writer of the excellent Iunctio fic, mentioned below, as well as the Wrex fic also under her name. She also has written several more fic expanding her own version of the Mass Effect universe. Some fluff, an excellent story that happened between the two games that features Cerberus as the antagonists. She has recently finished writing her fic for the sequel called Exitus, which has the same superior quality of Inuctio, including a POV from Legion that's unique, in character, and brilliant.
    • Spark Moon: Indeed. 'Exitus' is especially remarkable, as it handles elements from the sequel in a very thoughtful and mature manner, especially into comparison with other post-Horizon fix fics. I would also like to add that her Shepard is a diamond in the rough and the enormous gravitas of the situation -Horizon included- is handled with a certain believability that is greatly welcomed in the fandom. I also have to give her major praise for having the guts to kill off characters like Jack, Zaeed and Thane in Exitus, which is sure to fly in the face of a reader who hopes for a No Man Left Behind-esque ending. Her sole Dragon Age story -focusing on a criminally overlooked character- is worth noting too.
    • Joysweeper: Seriously, Sinvraal is by far my favorite Mass Effect writer. She writes the scenes I like most, in-between scenes, and main scenes through the eyes of someone who has different perspectives; she never writes from Shepard's perspective, allowing the Commander to be all mysterious; calls Shepard Shepard instead of her first name; and I like her crew interactions and the way she writes biotics. The only complaint I have is Kelly Chambers. Felt kind of out of left field. If Drew Karpyshyn turned writing the Mass Effect books over to her, I wouldn't mind much.
    • Estelindis: Agreed with all the above. Sinvraal keeps the characters true to their origins while adding vastly more detail and depth. Yet she does this without going on an information overload. Every little aspect is carefully chosen, and together they create an incredible effect (like a mosaic). While I enjoy Drew's novels, I find her writing style superior in nearly every way (praise for Sinvraal, not scorn for Drew). She happens to be quite happy working at her current job, but I would be delighted if a writing job opened up at Bioware that she was able and willing to take.

If You Were Commander Shepard
  • Recommended by Meshakhad
  • A thread consisting of people writing their own dialogue for Mass Effect. Runs the gamut from lampshading plot holes to creating moments of pure awesome. Not all are good, but many are excellent.

The Wacky Fun-time Audio Thread
  • Recommended by LoganLee88, pcy623, Firebert
  • A hysterical NSFW thread with edited audio from Mass Effect 2. With pairings such as Male Shepard/Zaeed, Miranda/Jack, Grunt/Tali, Tali/Legion, Jacob/Kasumi and Thane/Samara, it's bound to put you in stitches if you aren't already uncomfortable hearing their "getting shot" audio as The Immodest Orgasm. The way the creator pieced dialogue from the game together is more banter than you can find in the original game. Besides that, the thread includes Easter Eggs: cut audio from Mass Effect 2.
    • pcy623: That gave me the giggles.
    • Firebert: Rite of Passage made me laugh out loud. "And he's a big one." "Impressive!"

The Bioware Big Bang
  • Recommended by Ghastdream
  • Section of Mass Effect Fanart and Fanfic from the Bioware Big Bang Challenge.

Munkeestuff
  • Recommended by Firebert
  • Tumblr that features some hilarious drawings featuring Javik. Warning: Contains ME 3 spoilers.

The Unofficial Mass Effect Epilogue Slides
  • Recommended by S1duri, DudeL, brodyaga
  • Fan-made epilogue generator for Mass Effect 3
    • DudeL: I highly endorse this. I know at first the ending leaves a bad taste because of the amount of sacrifice and uncertainty but it still leaves a large opportunity for hope in the universe. This little endeavor shows how feasible that hope is and that the game isn't ruined. Might give an idea for what the Extended Cut will be like.

Best at Everything
  • Recommended by ADHD_Pyro, USA Bobcat
  • Synopsis: Shepard recruited the best in the universe for his campaign against the Collectors. This includes...
    • ADHD_Pyro: From the twisted minds over at Space Battles comes a veritable cornucopia of crossovers with everything imaginable. In particular, their fusion of ME2 with Metal Gear Solid is incredibly well done.
    • Masked And Dangerous: As one of the writers on this thread, I can die happy now knowing something I contributed to got a recommendation on this site.
    • Meta Skipper : A good thread for a good laugh. Appears to be slow to update, sadly.

Twitter #Solcomms
  • Recommended (posthumously) by Blacksun388
  • Synopsis: Fan made twitter page (now defunct) that chronicled the the Reaper invasion on Earth from the perspective of every day people around the world. People sent messages from military units, government officials, civilians, rescue operations teams, and local law enforcement across this board and wrote short stories and blogs about their own experiences.

Chi Kyoku
  • Recommended by Murus
  • Synopsis: A set of five loosely related stories, the last of which is unfortunately a dead fic. F!Shepard/Garrus ship-fics.
  • Comments: Murus: These are distinctly relationship-oriented fics written by a high-schooler (at the time). Normally, that would be a big flashing sign for me to go read something else, avoiding this in a wide circle. But I didn't... and Chi Kyoku ended up being one of those people who are a shining example on why a book shouldn't be judged by its cover. For this is not some immature Mary Sue horror show. What we have here is a set of wonderful, well-written stories that approach their subject with subtlety and maturity. The Garrus/Fem!Shep relationship is layered, develops slowly (in a good sense) and, above all, feels real. Also, there isn't much action... yet I didn't mind that at all. Considering my usual interests, preferences and avoidances when it comes to fanfiction, that speaks volumes of just how good Chi Kyoku's work is. Go now, and read.

Lady Alila
  • Recommended by Meimay.
  • She focus on Femshep/Garrus but at the same time love to explore the "what if"s from all 3 games: what if Garrus decided to tag along in the Omega DLC, what if the clone managed to replace Shepard and fooled her crew in the Citadel DLC, how much affect Mindoir really had on Shepard and the likes. Well-written action scenes, good characterizations, heart-warming and well-placed romances, plots twists and intense cliff-hangers to make you want more. This author's fics are a must read.

    General Fics 
Stories focused on the family and the friendly relationships of the cast. Plot-focused stories or light day-in-the-life stories. Pretty much anything that isn't focused on romance.

Stuck in a World of Fiction by Trebor117
  • Recommended by Mamner
  • Status: Complete, with a sequel on the way.
  • Synopsis: Self insert. A man wakes up on Eden Prime with heavy amnesia, biotics, unexplained training, and two other versions of Shepard stuck in is head as voices that he frequently argues with. As he joins Shepard in her quest to stop the reapers, he'll make enemies, make friends, find romance, and have to make a lot of choices.
  • Comments: This story is one of the best S Is on the site, and full of humor, yet also has a serious plot and lots of twists. There are a couple that seem kinda marysueish or Dues Ex Machinaish, but over all it works well. The author actually ended up completely rewriting/rebooting the story, and now there's a crossover with another SI fic as a semi-sequel. He's apparently also writing a proper sequel, Surviving a World of Fiction

The Homefront by The-Mass-Effect-Gamer
  • Recommended by survivor6861
  • Status: Still in progress
  • Synopsis: It's 2186, and the Reapers have attacked. Major Coats learns of the true nature of the Reapers and joins forces with Admiral Anderson, and together they set out to combat this ancient enemy and hold out as they prepare for Shepard's eventual return
  • Comments: One of the few fics that deal with the challenges of maintaining a resistance on a planet that is under total occupation by a race of machine overlords. Well-written, this fic is one of the few hidden gems of ME fan fiction
    • Hedgehog1: Agreed. The story starts off a bit slow and the characters introduced seem a bit cookie-cutter at first, but they really start to feel real and almost canonical to me as the story progresses. His writing definitely improves in the later chapters.

How Hard Could It Be?
  • Recommended by Tropers/Kirook
  • Status: Main story is complete, but the author continues to add chapters based on user requests.
  • Synopsis: Two years after the defeat of the Reapers, Ashley and Shepard have moved on to the next challenge, raising their daughters. Set after ME3, assuming Shepard survived the Destroy ending.
  • Tags: Some chapters fall under WAFF, because of the subject matter. However, other chapters do involve combat, and some invoke Adult Fear. Some sexy stuff, but nothing explicit; this is not a Lemon.
  • Comments: This fic is at various times hilarious, heartwarming, and tearjerking. Everyone is in character, and Shepard and Ashley's love of their children is written beautifully. The fic also contains an interesting look at what happens when Maddy, Shepard's oldest daughter, goes to school, and how her father's legacy affects her life.

Mass Effect: The First War
  • Recommended by Tropers/axiom2
  • Status: Complete, Sequel Pending.
  • Synopsis: Instead of finding a treasure trove of Protean Tech on Mars, Humanity finds empty ruins, leading to them advancing on an entirely different route than in Canon.
  • Tags: Alternate Universe
  • Comments: (axiom12) Personally, it was a great read. Aside from details at the beginning of the story that clash with details at the end (Which the author seems to recognize and is working on), the action is phenomenal, the characters great (You will never forget the name Christopher Mcgraw ), and the Human Tech uniquely interesting, despite the author-recognized similarities to Halo, which he claims are largely coincidental. The only problem I had was the grammar, which improves greatly as the story continues, but suffers near the beginning, and the plot, which, while not perfect, had some weaknesses; however, through correspondence with the Author (Who seems to answer all of his fan-mail), he recognizes this as well, and is working on 'beefing it up' as he releases the Sequel.

Transcendent Humanity
  • Recommended by midorigreen, Racheakt, USA Bobcat, Unclouded TJ
  • ...And behind the defensive fleet, the true power of humanity. An occluded star, a supercomputer larger than worlds, filled with a trillion minds. Transcendent Humanity speaks as one, the force of their voice ripping through firewalls, absorbing language and codex, booming from every device capable aboard the Turian ships. This is Sol, the home of humanity. YOU ARE NOT WELCOME HERE.
  • Comments: Humanity develops differently due to an early warning from the Protheans, and become a race of Uploaded AIs. In-progress, but highly interesting read with a dynamic take on how the Citadel would react to another race of AIs. Also, Geth eating toast.

The Siege of Shanxi: by Made Nightwing
  • Recommended by survivor6861
  • Synopsis:In 2157, the Turian Hierarchy shocked the Council species by commencing a sudden and illegal war against a new race, known only as 'Humans'. This is the story of Shanxi's third Garrison Division, and their fight for survival, and freedom.
  • Comments: A well written, in-progress piece, about the Relay 314 incident and how humanity met its first live alien species. Focuses on various viewpoints that include human and Turian soldiers and leaders. Written before the release of the Mass Effect: Evolution, it expands on the Siege of Shanxi and how humanity and Turians fought each others in the skies and mud of Shanxi. Also expands on viewpoints of notorious characters from Mass Effect's background that include General Williams, Jon Grissom, Saren Arterius and The Illusive Man himself.

Uplifted and it's sequel Uplifted: Intervention by DarkDanny
  • Recommended by Magyareagle, Valarshran
  • Pairing: Romance is not the focus of the fics, but they feature Hanala Jarva and Joachim Hoch (OC/OC), Male Shepard/Tali
  • Synopsis: AU: Desperate for an end to the exile, now in its forty seventh year, the Quarians decide on a last audacious plan to help them destroy the Geth. However, January 1942 in occupied Russia might not be the best place for first contact with humanity... Eventual Tali/Shep
  • Comments: Both fics complete. These stories explore what happens when the desperate Quarians decide to Uplift Humanity in the middle of the Second World War. When Hanala Jarva crash lands on earth during a survey mission, she makes a historic first contact that has radical implications for Humanity. Unfortunately, the Quarians are not fully aware of just who they are choosing to uplift. A brilliant and detailed alternate history written by someone who has a clear grasp of the events and personalities involved, DarkDanny avoids the mistake most fanfic authors make when writing alternate histories by going back to beginning and going from there. He ultimately plans to write a series chronicling three generations of Quarians and Humans, with the final series focusing on Shepard and Tali, something that I am quite certain he will accomplish. Glimpses into the future are told through a series of interludes that do not detract from the brilliant story at the center of it. Anyone with an interest in good storytelling or alternate history will love this, in large part due to the complex characters. Fair warning though, given the time period, many of the human characters are sexist and racist, and realistically ignorant of what is going on around them. This in turn makes for a much better story.
    • The author does address the Holocaust in the series though not until the second book. Given the period when it is set, it makes sense, since the Final Solution did not begin until 1942. This makes story all the more chilling when you hear men like Himmler discuss exactly what they are planning. Kudos to the author for avoiding the black and white characterization of historical figures that often happens in stories about the period. There are bright points even within the German High command, most notable Rommel. Historical figures include Mad Jack Churchill, Erwin Rommel, Bill Donovan and Otto Skorzeny.
    • I was suspicious of the premise at first but it grew on me. I'm Jewish, so any story that has a nazi protagonist is automatically suspect in my eyes. But the story proved me wrong. The characters are both sympathetic and yet true to their personalities. Joachim Hoch is on the one hand an anti-Semitic bastard, on the other he is decent man who begins to change his views once he realizes the crimes of the regime he supports. Other characters share a similar duality. I think the best part is seeing how history changes with the events and how everything leads to young Tali and Shepard, childhood sweethearts who grew up together on Rannoch, which sets the stage for the stories taking place in the mass effect timeline. Dark Danny is a very good author.
    • Eh, IMO, the quality of writing and sheer amount of typos leaves something to be desired. Good premise, but I feel executed poorly.
    • I'll admit the first two's quality needs some work, but it's always been on the upswing lately.
    • Tags: Alternate History, Alternate Universe Fic
    • Tropes Page here

Uplifted Last Days by DarkDanny
  • Recommended by Magyareagle
  • Pairing: Romance is not the focus of the fics, but they feature Hanala Jarva and Joachim Hoch (OC/OC), Male Shepard/Tali
  • Synopsis: These are the last days. The last days of the Third Reich, the last days of the Western Front and the last days of Humanity being alone in the universe. The world is about to change; but will it be for the better?
  • Comments: This fic firmly answers any questions anyone had about the direction of the series, as well as showing some of the best character development I've read in fanfiction by illustrating in a realistic manner how a SS officer might eventually change his views and become a more tolerant individual. The growth of Joachim Hoch has been a fascinating journey to follow, and this story really takes the cake in that regard. Excellent writing, and the inclusion of some fantastic new characters, such as Rabbi Edward Asher, and the downfall of the Nazi regime make this story a fitting conclusion to the first part of Uplifted series.

Uplifted: Revolution by DarkDanny
  • Recommended by Valarshran, JadeCrisanthamum
  • Pairing: Romance is not the focus of the fics, but they feature Hanala Jarva and Joachim Hoch (OC/OC), Male Shepard/Tali
  • Synopsis: Millions are being shipped to extermination camps across Europe, the Allied bombing raids are growing more fierce, the 6th Army in Stalingrad is on the verge of collapse and the Anglo-American invasion of Algeria will become a reality. The insanity that is the Third Reich is beginning to show. But little does anyone know that revolution is in the air. The uprising has begun..
  • Comments: The final chapter of the Uplifted Trilogy, and all out civil war in Germany seems to be the order of the day. We see that DarkDanny has known were he was going with this series from day one, which is impressive to say the least. As I said when I reviewed the previous two stories, since I'm Jewish, I tend to be a bit sensitive to depictions of the Third Reich, but I find that despite the language used in the series, the author is clear on where he stands in regards to the final solution. My only gripe with the series is that I wish the author would check his spelling for typos. Can't fault him too much though, he's written 400+ pages in three months. Rommel is a true badass in these stories, but I find that the master diplomat Halid Zorah really takes the cake. I also love how we see the Quarians at a time when they are far more like the Colonials from Battlestar than the broken people we see Mass Effect.
    • The author has fixed the earlier spelling errors, and this series has really caught my imagination. The author is already planning a second trilogy set in 2,000, focusing on the descendants of the characters in the first series. It's well thought out, the characters are flawed and surprisingly likable, and it's quite well written. Proof that the remaining 10% is worth launching a coup against the Nazis for.

An Elegant Solution by James Golen
  • Recommended by MacSauce
  • Synopsis: Shepard isn't a soldier; he's an engineer. Mass Effect 3 Ending-spoilers
  • Comments: This is an Mass Effect 3 ending fic. The writing is concise and pleasant, the Shepard is original and smart. Strong dialogue between an engineer and a giant god-like computer.

Kingdom of Rust by Mighty Crouton
  • Recommended by MacSauce
  • Synopsis: It takes an ocean of trust if you are going to survive long hours traveling between solar systems. Garrus and Shepard pass the time despite cultural and language barriers before the Omega-4 Relay Mission.
  • Comments: Kingdom of Rust explores an intimate friendship between a human and Turian. The first and second chapter are very well done, with both characters appropriating each other's body language. Speaking as someone who has traveled, this story is very realistic of two cultures clashing into one another. Foucault is an exceptional Renegade FShep. Crouton hints at an ambiguous disorder that may or may not be Aspberger's, a bit of an iron woobie mixed with knight in sour armor. Probably one of the best Shepards I've ever read, and the fact her nickname is Foucault tells me Crouton has done his research on humanist philosophies.

The Final Problem by Mighty Crouton
  • Recommended by MacSauce
  • Synopsis: How do you solve an impossible problem? A story of indoctrination, chaos, and freedom. Sequel to Kingdom of Rust
  • Comments: There are a lot of stories floating out there with unique Mass Effect 3 endings, but this one takes the cake. Crouton really dives into ME's themes - free will, control, chaos, order, right, and wrong. One of the most interesting takes on indoctrination, and his Shepard remains very unique and incredibly intriguing. She's like the brain child of Dr. Who, Lisbeth Salander, and Sherlock, and an incredibly flawed Anti-Hero. The first chapter is a wonderful 1st person account of someone who Crouton hints is brilliant yet egotistical and makes for a terrible human but a wonderful reaper killer.

Spirit Of Redemption by Myetel
  • Recommended by Esseresse, Vorkosigan
  • Synopsis: "The Spectres fight against threats to both the galaxy and their families on Mindoir. Shepard/Garrus, multiple O Cs, largely expanded universe."
  • Comments: This Fic Has replaced canon for me, It has over 3.09 MILLION words and it's not over yet!
    • ps any help with the tvtropes page for this Fic is welcome and needed.
  • This is a monster of a fiction. Clocking in at 3.2 millions words (or thereabouts), it covers from just past the Reaper War to about ten years after. As the previous troper mentioned, this has replaced canon for me. The sheer scope of it combined with the technical skills (no misspellings, two to three new languages that at least seem internally consistent, and a very well thought out plot with tons of O Cs) make this my new favorite fic on the Citadel.

Harvest by Nuts!
  • Recommended by Gore17, hodaza, USA Bobcat, Jonn
  • Synopsis: "Was that the first time a geth asked it if had a soul?" "No. It was the first time a Creator became frightened when we asked."
  • Comments: Words cannot do this fic justice. Read it and remember why you love fanfic.
    • Seconded
    • USA Bobcat: Just a one-shot, but a very well done one-shot. Makes you feel the separation between Geth and Quarian quite well, and somehow reminds me of a mother and her children. If you like either the Geth or the Quarians, read this. It will remind you why you still comb through archives of fanfiction, for the elusive works of quality.

Renegade Reinterpretations by College Fool
  • Recommended by AngelOfBlood, Grantnote , Vellaen, Macsauce, Gentlemens Dame 883
  • Synopsis: This fic is one massive AU Fic, in which Relay 314 was discovered by the Batarians, not the Turians, and humanity, and the galaxy are radically changed, forever. To quote the first chapter, "This is the darkest century of human history. This is the catalyst that changed and defined the Human race as it emerged upon the galactic stage. This is not a happy story, or a story of glory, or even a particularly pleasant one. It is, at heart, a Renegade's story, of one race rising up defying a galaxy's expectations."
  • Comments: Words cannot describe the fic. It just has to be read to be believed. It's dark, and will toss your already conceived viewpoints out the window. It's obvious that the author did a LOT of thinking about consequences, and how they will affect the universe in general.
    • YMMV - Be warned this isn't a traditional fic but more like a history book of an alternate universe, with no real dialogue or characterizations.
    • It also has a very interesting re-imagining of the Suicide Mission. Here, it's not possible to save everyone like it is in the real ME2, but each character has more opportunities to show off their badassery.
    • A curious thought experiment, with realistic reactions and details that makes humanity truly terrifying in a galaxy that is increasingly insane and brutal. Imagine a bit of Warhammer 40,000, Mass Effect, Star Wars, and give all of those an underdog mentality and you'd gave something not unlike this story.
    • The problem with the story is that it reads as an outline, complete with "If the player chooses so and so option then so and so happens". The ideas are interesting, but YMMV, since it isn't really a story per say. It would be interesting if people wrote stories in that universe though.
    • Honestly the fic is brilliant during the 40+ chapters of backstory which are as said earlier a very well written historical document. Once the events of the games start suddenly the fic starts looking like a game design document and is much less fun to read.

From The Stars We Come by Nuclear Bacon
  • Recommended by mrtaco6
  • Synopsis: The life and trials of an N7 Ops Team. Four unlikely people come together to defend the galaxy from the Reaper threat.
  • Comments: Even at only two chapters so far, this story has a lot of promise. In my opinion, there aren't enough Mass Effect multiplayer team fics around, and this should hopefully fill the niche nicely.

Order Upon Chaos by Sudentor
  • Recommended by owlbot, Bustamouse
  • Synopsis: The publication of the Precipice Archives Report for the Third Citadel detailing the events since five billion years ago, how the attempt to save life led to its cyclic destruction, and how this affected the galaxy five billion years later.
  • Comments: Written in the form of salvaged transcripts, documents, and messages recovered almost a millennium after the events of Mass Effect 3, Order Upon Chaos chronicles the origin of the Reapers, explaining how they went from a democratic body trying to save one civilization after another, to Well-Intentioned Extremists, to eldritch abominations. The story is difficult to pick up at first, for the transcripts can be dense, confusing, and not immediately obvious, but it rolls elegantly along once it truly picks up speed, and gracefully shows how the initial, desperate attempt to ensure life goes on in the galaxy slowly transforms into the horrifying cycles of extinction we associate with the Reapers today, as well as the beginnings of the enigmatic characters Harbinger and the Catalyst.

Mass Effect: Mistakes Worth Sharing by Sudentor
  • Recommended by: Wild Goose
  • Synopsis: Just four ups and downs a very special Turian feels are worth sharing. General Garrus Vakarian gives the commencement address to the first post-Reaper War graduating class at the Cipritine Hill Services Academy.
  • Comments: Exactly What It Says on the Tin. A commencement address is a tremendously boring thing, but the author of Exoria manages to perfectly capture Garrus' voice and make this address something from the heart, at the same time showing the reader how Garrus has grown throughout the three Mass Effect games.

The Miracle at Palaven by Sudentor (aka Kei)
  • Recommended by: Peteman, Wild Goose
  • Synopsis: The Miracle At Palaven is the biggest Offscreen Moment of Awesome in the game. This story opts to flesh it out, giving a theoretical account as written from a historical in-universe document. Do you believe in miracles?
    • As for the kind of playthrough that was done, the Geth and the Quarians are both alive, even in the aftermath of the events that would take place in the game.
  • Tags: Violence and language.
  • Comments: Definitely worth a read. It gives a great take on the events and highlights the kinds of things that would have to be done and what could go wrong, and the kinds of badass it takes to overcome that sort of adversity. My favorite chapter so far was the one on the Bosh'tet Express.

Same by Sudentor
  • Recommended by Murus
  • Synopsis: In the aftermath of the attempted coup, Ashley Williams rejoins the Normandy crew and runs into the last person she wants to see, the embodiment of frustration, guilt, and regret, of what she could've been and should've been.
  • Comments: Takes place immediately following Ashley's return to the Normandy in ME3. This one-shot describes her awkward meeting with Garrus, and does so excellently - capturing the character of both Ashley and Garrus, and with thought to how their history would shape this reunion.

Accidental Hero of the Galaxy by Random Equinox
  • Recommended by Bufu, Deep Recon, Mavado, Magyareagle
  • Synopsis: Commander Shepard. Hero of the Skyllian Blitz. First human Spectre. Kleptomaniac Hero Potential savior of humanity and the known galaxy. Pity no one asked him what HE thought of all this.
  • Comments: If you're already familiar with and enjoyed the Ciaphas Cain books set in the Warhammer40k universe, you should enjoy this fic as well. It's sets up Shepard as a pragmatic soul that always wants to paint himself as a self-serving Fake Ultimate Hero with good luck for getting into escalating scraps—all the while showing extraordinary heroism that belays his self-deprecation. The internal monologue is quite funny, lampshading many of the game's somewhat nonsensical situations. Furthermore, the interactions between the squad members is a joy to read, seeing their relationships grow from strained to a band of brothers forged in battle. I'm surprised nobody had already posted this one—especially the Warhammer40k/ME fans among us that I see enjoyed Dreadnaught!Shepard in Iron Rebirth below. —Bufu
    • One of the biggest appeals of the Ciaphas Cain series was how readers could see perfectly well why Cain was revered as a hero, but his internal monologues and thoughts make it clear that he doesn't want anything to do with that sort of reputation. Accidental Hero of the Galaxy follows in the same vein: Shepard is clearly rolling along the Paragon path, but his every decision is clearly influenced by his desire to keep his own hide safe while making sure people don't grow to revile him. Similarly, both Cain and Shepard have a clearly lower opinion of themselves than they ought to, as acknowledge by Amberly and Anderson, respectively. Cain and Shepard are generally motivated by self-preservation, but there are times when they're clearly acting genuinely heroic and try to write it off as more of the same. Their desire to be innocuous is so strong that they'll deny heroism even when it isn't accidental, also playing to the great flaw that both characters have rather low self-esteem. —Deep Recon
    • And now, there's a sequel.
    • A bit of Fridge Brilliance— Shepard in this fic is an Infiltrator. Think about how that class fights... and how it fits perfectly with his character.
    • YMMV. It can be interesting, but the primary appeal of Ciaphas Cain is not only the Fake Ultimate Hero that is zig-zagged, but also the over the top nature of Warhammer40k being Lampshaded. Cain being a good commissar instead of a Bad Boss, Inquisitor Vail being competent, etc. Without those elements, the fic is enjoyable, but (arguably) not to the same degree that the Ciaphas Cain series is.
    • I'd say comparing the stories to Ciaphas Cain is a bit unfair. The brilliance of the stories is not because of their similarities to Cain, but because of how unique and fresh the voice of Shepard is. He has a bit of Cain in him, but the point of the stories is to create a genre savvy Shepard who is a mixture of rogue and charm without it being over the top or silly. I enjoyed the series quite a bit.
      • While I agree that the series tries to do this, I argue that the first story is far more true to the Cain Name. Later entries into the series would have the Shepard described in the post above... but my point remains.

The Hero We Deserve by Random Equinox
  • Rexommended by DealsWithFate3
  • Synopsis: Humans are being abducted, probably because someone has really poor taste. Shepard has to find out why and stop them with the help of a band of misfits. They say it's a suicide mission. So what else is new? Well, getting killed for starters...
  • Comments: The sequel to Accidental Hero of the Galaxy, and benefits from the better pacing and characterization due to the improvements in gameplay and story between ME 1 and ME 2.

Cause and Effect by Raven Studios
  • Recommended by pyrotorch246, Randomfanboy
  • Synopsis: "Pre-Mass Effect. Jalissa Shepard meant to stay a farmer on Mindoir after high school. And then the Batarians came. 100 prompts. 1,000 words. From Mindoir, through basic, to Elysium, to just before boarding the Normandy. Snapshots of Shepard's life." —official Summary by author. Pretty much as written.
  • Comments: Literally a bunch of 1,000 word vignettes interspaced throughout Shepard's life from Mindoir to right before the beginning of the game. Exceptionally well written. Now has a sequel concerning the events of the first game, with plans to continue the series through the end of Mass Effect 3.
    • Fair warning - this is dark. Jalissa Shepard is one of the biggest Iron Woobies I've ever read, and the other characters in the sequel series all become even bigger woobies than they already are. It's definitely not bad, but reading it all in one go can push you across the Despair Event Horizon.

Newton's First Law by Raven Studios
  • Recommended by pyrotorch246
  • Synopsis: A sequel to Cause and Effect that picks up with Shepard's transfer to the Normandy and covers the first game.
  • Comments: This fic is in the same style as its predecessor—1,000 word chapters that are something of a slice of life look at Shepard and her crew as they go through the events of the original Mass Effect. At 246 chapters, it has definitely reached Door Stopper status.

The Distress Call by Knightfall1138o
  • Recommended by Tillian
  • Synopsis: Many decisions lie ahead. Most of them pointless.
  • Comments: A nice parody about the trailer where Shepard turns away the distress call from Noveria. We see off-camera behind the scenes as the victims of Noveria tried to make sense with the rejection, as they are being bombed to death while Shepard was busy picking up minerals at his leisure.

Mass Effect: Iron Rebirth by Mashadar
  • Recommended by: Alamo, Joysweeper
  • Synopsis: Shepard's revival is necessarily much earlier than canon, and the only way it can be done is by putting his functional brain into a YMIR mech chassis, with all the baggage that implies.
  • Comments: You know, when I recommend a fic, the highest praise I can give it is that even though I may not be a fan of what it's based of of, I still enjoyed the fic. This is one of those. I have never played either of the Mass Effect games and have only a passing knowledge of the universe, but still found this to be a great read. The writing is competent, the dialogue well written, the key ploy point intriguing, and the storyline well done. I highly recommend this.
    • Hnn. I felt like this got off to a very promising start - I'm a sucker for Brain in a Jar - but as the chapters went on the grammatical mistakes, overuse of names in conversations, and run-on sentences started to get to me. Besides, the recurring talk of this permanence started annoying me - what, is it so hard to put fingers on these mechs? I'll look for further chapters, but I have a sense of wasted potential here.

Mock Effect by Mister Buch
  • Recommended by Tillian, Firebert
  • Synopsis: Jane Shepard was being promoted as a 'Sub-Spectre' much to her humiliation as her psychotic brother John Shepard was promoted as a Spectre. She has to save the galaxy from not only the incompetent, unoriginal villains like Saren and Unicron... sorry Sovereign, but also from her crazy ass brother from trashing up the galaxy with his try hard Renegade attitude.
  • Comments: A nice parody that digs deep into plot-holes, cliche, spotlighting the flaws like how the renegade options are blatantly childish and bad textured load ups. This parody was so popular there's a 10 page dedication to this fan fiction on the official Mass Effect forums before the moderators shut it down due to bad server technology. Sadly it's in script format so the webmasters of the ff.net had to take it down much to the fans annoyance. Fortunately one of the fans jumped in to save the day by creating a another Mass Effect fan fiction site for Mr. Buch to host it. You can still check it out by clicking on the above link.
    • Not a good idea to read it if you like... any of the characters, really. The author seems to hate them all.
      • Except for Kaidan.
      • No, Kaidan gets it too. He's a complete idiot, like every other character.
    • I personally found the story to be little more than an annoying Revenge Fic.
    • This editor disagrees, it's a humorous story, you don't have to hate the game to find it funny.
    • The sheer number of details mocked suggest that the author played the game in depth, at least a few times. It's unlikely that anyone would bother to do so with a game he/she doesn't like. Probably just a very serious case of Accentuate the Negative.
    • Some people may find the overly negative stuff funny, but this was just one of the more flat-out insufferable "humor" fics to read IMO.
    • I'll throw in my two cents on this one. This fic lampshades a lot of (apparent) plot holes and characterization issues from the first game. If you can maintain your sense of humor throughout the whole thing, parts are absolutely hilarious, but it does get vicious at times, and is likely to make you rageface at least once or twice when there's a perfectly sensible in-story explanation for a supposed plot hole that is mocked. If you find it hard to read parodies or take rather vicious criticism of the game in stride, I'd advise you to avoid it. If, on the other hand, you're OK with that, read it and laugh your head off. In my opinion, I'm fairly certain it was written by someone who enjoyed the game (they know far too much about the inner workings of the game to actually hate it), so just keep that in mind. And it legitimately is hilarious most of the time—in particular, do not read the retelling of the moon mission while sitting in math class, as you will need to go running for the door lest you burst out laughing in the middle of a serious discussion on the Euclidean Algorithm or something. FWIW, I still think the fic is worth reading, just understand that every character is mocked heavily, with poor Tali likely getting the worst of it. There are no exceptions—everyone from the Council to Steve, the blond guy who salutes you every time you walk down the stairs in the Normandy, is mocked mercilessly.
  • Bloody hilarious, and I say that as someone who loves the game. It is to ME1 what "Yet Another KOTOR Parody" is to, well, KOTOR. Reading it made me realize just how much BioWare's writing and production values improved between ME1 and the other two games. Sadly, I didn't find the "unofficial" sequels to live up to the original.

New Friends by Mister Buch
  • Recommended by Tillian
  • Synopsis: Shepard is a 16 year-old penniless petty thief living on Earth. She starts running with the 10th Street Reds and finds a new life for herself. When the gang plans to assassinate a Turian veteran she has to find the great strength she has been ignoring.
  • Comments: A detailed backstory for the Earthborn profile. It explores the dark underbelly in the streets of Earth, alien racism and prejudice with biotics. Brilliant attention to the settings of the world, a steady pacing and a interesting POV of a young Shepard who is a child on the verge of becoming an adult. A must read if you like Mass Effect fics.

Graveyard Shift by Peptuck
  • Recommended by corin, Bufu
  • Synopsis: A Novelization of the first Mass Effect game, that cuts close to the plot of the original story, while still making some deviations. Features a male biotic Colonist Shepard that has aspects of both the War Hero and the Ruthless backgrounds.
  • Comments: Another videogame Novelization by the same author behind Tiberium Wars and Forward. Still just starting up (as of this point, the story has just reached the Citadel) but so far, by the reviewers' response, its a very well-written story that paints Shepard in an interesting light as both a pragmatic soldier and a traumatized veteran. Promises to be good, if the author could just keep up with regular updates.
  • Rather good writing, as Tiberium Wars has already proved. To be honest, I need a little more to judge by, but what he's written so far is very intriguing. He's doing a great job of adapting the story to the medium, and with good results so far. Only complaints so far is irregular update schedule. Definitely worth the time if you would like something to read without sifting through mountains of mediocre fics.

Exitus by Sinvraal
  • Recommended by owlbot, MacSauce
  • Synopsis: Explorations, variations and off-camera moments from the Mass Effect 2 storyline. Multiple character POVs.
  • Comments: An excellent fic weaving in and out of the ME2 storyline, expanding on character viewpoints and weaving subplots in and out. Fem!Shep seems to be more of a Paragade rather than a particularly clean-cut Paragon or Renegade, which makes her own personal interactions and plots quite a bit more interesting. Also includes one of the most utterly fantastic portrayals of Legion ever witnessed in Mass Effect fanfic history.

Interstitium by Assault Sloth
  • Recommended by Deadpool Fan, Darkholme, Firebert, sushemi, owlbot, Bustamouse, Vellaen, Grant MK 2
  • Status: Complete
  • Synopsis: A series of oneshots weaving in and out of the ME2 plot, focusing on major and minor character POV's alike!
  • Comments: The series overall does a great job of detailing some of the more minor and major characters of the Mass Effect universe. The stories give us a better idea of who these people are and its surprisingly accurate to their personalities. The chapter detailing Grunt and Kal'Reegar's points of view is very well done, contrast Grunt's Blood Knight tendencies with Kal's professional soldier personality. Even lesser known NPC characters are given a good deal of characterization, such as one Krogan tank-born that's one of Professor Okeer's reject pile and even Wilson, a minor bit player at the start of the game, is given a full chapter devoted to him that wonderfully broadens his character. All in all its a great read.
    • Seconded, the author manages to breathe life into both the setting and the characters.
    • A really great read, especially if you're tired of fics focusing only on the main characters. Recommended to all comers.
    • Besides being a great alternative glance into the minds of the cast, it also does a good job of figuring out why certain things like Lawson just so happening to find Oriana at that specific time would logically happen. Also does a great job of making Mordin a proper mad scientist.
    • It's pretty much THE best fanfic i have ever read in my life. Every chapter is written in a slightly different way, which shows differences between PO Vs. Nearly all characters are much more interesting here than in a game, as author could deepen the relations between crew, what we sadly couldn't see in a game. Flashbacks are also wtirren superbly, especially the chapters about EDI, Zaeed, Shepard and Miranda. I can only wholeheartedly reccomend this fic.

Mass Effect Interregnum by The Naked Pen
  • Recommended by Altercation, Spark Moon, randomfanboy, Javier, Joysweeper, sushemi, valbinooo, Bustamouse
  • Synopsis: Focuses on Garrus's days between ME1 and 2, initially set about four months after Shepard's death at the hands of the Collectors, detailing how he met and put together his team to fight crime. Those seeking fluff need not apply.
  • Comments: Without a doubt, one of the best fanfictions detailing Garrus's months in Omega. The characterization of Garrus is perfect, to use a better word, genuine. There's really no question on how much The Naked Pen captured Garrus's personality, his dark wit and constant second-guessing and wraps it all up in a central plot point concerning an incredibly powerful ship. Highly recommended.
    • Word. As someone who's totally burnt out on the romantic fluff stuff as far as anything involving Garrus goes, this story is a much needed breath of fresh air. In this troper's opinion, it's criminal this story hasn't gotten more attention.
    • The tragedy element of the story is heartwrenching as well. You know how it'll all end, so seeing Sidonis and Garrus becoming True Companions (with some very effective writing) will hurt you.
    • I agree with all of the above. The Naked Pen obviously really loves and understands Garrus and the Mass Effect universe, and its good to see a good writer writing something more like the games in tone than most of the rest of the fandom does. The only downside is that the updating is quite slow, but it's well worth the waits.
    • Possibly my favorite ME fanfic. Extraordinarily well written action, brilliant world building, wonderful sense of voice from Garrus, excellently conceived characters/personalities— all together, a joy to read. Try it out, and I don't believe that anybody will find it a waste of time.
    • Unlike one of the above tropers, I like fluff. But I also liked this. Garrus seems very in-character, and even if the cyborg volus was eyebrow-raising, the constant snark back and forth is fun.
    • Incredibly good, almost suspiciously so. I'm not entirely sure that The Naked Pen isn't really one of the writers from Bioware who types this out in their spare time.
    • A minor but consistently-annoying quibble is that the author refers to every gun as firing "energy bolts" instead of bullets, when the series makes it very clear they're using kinetic weaponry and not energy. It's an otherwise glaring fault in a fic as well-researched as this one.
      • The author refers to them as bullets pretty much exclusively after chapter 13 and, even then, "energy bolt" isn't an unfair description of small chips of metal going at significant fractions of the speed of light.
    • Quite possibly my favorite ME fic as well. Garrus is extremely well-characterized, and the large cast of characters (there's eleven other people on his squad, after all!) is handled surprisingly well. It's partly serious, especially considering that we all already know how it's going to end (made all the more poignant by the fact that Sidonis is actually a pretty cool guy in the fic, having an almost younger brother relationship with his sort-of mentor Garrus), but balances that with absolutely hilarious sequences. There's a cyborg volus. There's snide but not overly obnoxious digs at some of the stranger aspects of the games, such as the seemingly bulletproof couches in Garrus' base and Shepard's habit of constantly visiting nightclubs. There's a ship called the SSV Starf***er. Cannot possibly recommend enough if you like Garrus at all.
      • The author has also written one very well-done spin-off called Omega Noire. In it, Garrus tries to investigate a murder, struggling against the rampant corruption and apathy of Omega to find the facts. It's a good classic "noir" style mystery with influences and homages from many classic mysteries, yet manages to fit in well with the image of Omega the author created in Interregnum. And it's just plain cool to see Garrus putting his detective skills to work.
    • This is possibly the only Mass Effect Fan Fic I've read that is a contender for the prestige of being Better Than Canon. Seriously, if your browsing through this page looking for something other than Slash Fic or yet another "retelling" of ME1 or ME2, click the link already.
    • Agreed; the actual Mass Effect novels pale in comparison in both prose and plot quality. However, the opening two sections ('Alpha and Omega' and 'Divine Intervention') are somewhat directionless and generally less good than the later arcs (though still pretty damn good compared to both the average fic and the official novels). Readers turned off by them might want to start with 'Sanctuary' to see how good the fic can be.
      • Contrary to the above troper, I actually enjoyed the first two arcs far more than the ones succeeding it. However, the later arcs, though significantly shorter, are still exceedingly well done, even if they aren't quite as engaging. That being said this is possibly the best written fic I've ever read, so there's that too.
    • Basically this should be required reading for the fandom
  • Status: Complete

Mind Over Matter by eyyowlf
  • Recommended by Spark Moon
  • Synopsis: From the summary: The adventures of the first human Spectre, the Butcher of Torfan, the son of Mindoir. Mild au for original subplots and sidequests. Ruthless Vanguard with concentration on biotics, aliens, milSF, and secondary crew. Pretty much an AU take on the first Mass Effect game, featuring a male Shepard.
  • Comments: Man. There are no words to accurately describe this fic. It's one of those ones that has so much stuff going on in it, it *has* to be read to be fully appreciated. The starring Shepard is such a jerkass, but a likable one to this troper. Seriously, find the time to sit down and read this if you can.

Iron Sharpens Iron by snippax
  • Recommended by: Kalaong
  • Status: Ongoing
  • Synopsis: FemShep is made more awesome than canon in the only way canon could provide; she was raised by Clan Urdnot as an honorary Krogan.
  • Comments: Shepard raised by Krogan. What else can be said?
    • Seconded by FelicitySprings. This is an excellent fic, especially if you're frustrated by many of the constraints of the canon Shepard backgrounds. As an added bonus, there's a good deal of FemShep/Miranda, FemShep/Jack and FemShep/Ashley in this fic, and that type of content at this level of quality is a rare thing indeed.

Tomorrow's Dawn by ElectricZ
  • Recommended by: Hanz, Sithking Zero, owlbot, Bustamouse, Murus
  • Synopsis: After Legion was destroyed in a mission, Tali is assigned the duty of recovering its memories despite her hatred of the Geth. As she views the last few moments of Legion, she begins to understand why the others see it as one of their True Companions as it proceeds to try and save it's squadmates.
  • Comments: Fascinating portrayal of Tali's hatred of Legion being tested. Likewise, it's also very interesting how the author portrays Legion as capable of extraordinary heroism and ultimately, sacrifice, though still in his ultra-logical fashion.
    • One of the few fics that actually made me cry, and not just for Legion! Tali's growth was very well done. She blows up violently at Garrus when he and the rest of the crew mourn the Geth, plots to send Legion's remains back to the fleet, but stops because she made a promise to Shepard. Upon retrieving the data, she sees that minutes before the battle where Legion was killed, Shepard learned from him that the Geth were willing to make peace with the Quarians, but just didn't know how to communicate it. And when the team was ambushed and completely helpless, Legion's programs voted to go on a suicide mission to save them, resulting in his destruction, losing the chance for peace forever. Tali's anguish over deciding to save Legion or give him to the fleet was heart-wrenching. This fic is also notable for having an alternate ending that the author describes as a save-game where he went back and upgraded Legion's shields so the damage is not irreparable. Legion's interruption of a depressing after-action meeting got the tears flowing again. I'm a sucker for happy endings! While not as emotionally hard hitting as the original ending, it adds a lot of wonderful dialogue and shows how even a Quarian and Geth can become friends. A marvelous read!
    • I just don't understand why I didn't read this one earlier. I think I was worried about it making me sad. Which it did, but... not at all in the way I expected. This is a truly fantastic fic, with Tali and yes, even Legion, written very much in character. If you like either character at all, you have to read this. The poster above me has already mentioned a lot of the great things in it, but let me just say that whichever ending you consider canon (technically, the alternate ending did go on to be canon in the writer's universe, with an in-progress sequel that, while less emotional and somewhat less character-focused than Tomorrow's Dawn, follows logically on from the conclusion of this fic, still with the great characterization, now of all members of Shepard's squad (and a few outside it!)), both are fantastic. Both make me cry, although for very different reasons. Absolutely recommend this to everyone! —Alynnidalar
    • Has a sequel spinning off from the alternate ending, where Tali manages to save Legion after reviewing his memories, titled ''For Tomorrow We Die.'' It's fantastic.
      • Murus: Agreed - can't recommend it enough. One of the best fanfics I've ever read, hands-down.

Second by ElectricZ
  • Recommended by: Salty Wound, Ghastdream
  • Synopsis: When Shepard is off the ship, the squad begins to chafe under Miranda's command. They look to Garrus to replace her as XO, but Garrus isn't sure mutiny is the answer.
  • Comments: Going in to this, you might be expecting a a Miranda bashing buffet. Unless you really are looking for that, you will be pleasantly surprised. This fic provides two of the best Miranda and Garrus characterizations I've ever read. Miranda starts out very jerky, but she begins to defrost without becoming a doormat for the others to wipe their feet on. Garrus shows himself to be a very capable mediator, without losing his tactical demeanor or his wry sense of humor. Also an entirely Shepard-less fic, which, in my opinion, adds to its strength. His influence still shows however, especially in the mini Twist Ending.

Fight for the Lost by LuxDragon
  • Recommended by: biodude711, extinctnlvlevnt
  • Synopsis: "Entire human colonies are vanishing. To save humanity, the galaxy's best and toughest individuals come together to form an unlikely team, all led by one very specific man." A novelization of Mass Effect 2.
  • Status: Complete
  • Pairing: M!Shepard/Miranda Lawson, Jacob Taylor/Kasumi Goto, other shippings implied.
  • Comments: As stated before, this story is VERY well written and not only focuses on the characterization of Commander Shepard but the rest of crew and team as well as they prepare for their suicide mission to stop the Collectors. The author does take some liberty with some of the game mechanics, but these changes don't take away from the story and help to make the story more believable. Very highly recommended and a must read for fans of Mass Effect 2.
    • An outstanding piece and proof that fanfiction need not always be trash, but actually holds the potential to transcend the original material and take on a life of its own. Fight for the Lost is the premiere Mass Effect fanfic on the entire internet. The narrative is true to the themes, focus, and direction of the story in Mass Effect 2, while the author still finds room to inject new dialogue and plot points to further enrich the experience and sets this work apart from its peers. Bonus points to Miri/Shepard fans, this is your treat on the house. More points for including the respective perspectives of virtually every team member and crewman on the Normandy, and even some minor NPCs. More bonus points to Shepard's duel with Harbinger after destroying the human-Reaper embryo. His solo duel with Harbinger.
    • This story is a loooong one, and every minute reading it is well spent. The author perfectly captures the spirit of the game. With all of the new, expanded, or reimagined scenes and the exploration into the characters' thoughts and viewpoints, this fic has finally earned its own page on this site.

Legacy of the Shadow Broker by LuxDragon
  • Recommended by: extinctnlvlevnt
  • Synopsis: "Information. It had always been the Shadow Broker's main trade and source of power. Deception, his weapon; anonymity, his shield. To bring down his empire and avenge a friend, Liara, Shepard, and their allies must take on all the forces that the Shadow Broker will bring to bear to preserve his secrets. And his life." A novelization of Mass Effect 2: Lair of the Shadow Broker DLC pack.
  • Status: Complete
  • Pairings: M!Shepard/Miranda Lawson
  • Comments: LuxDragon hasn't lost any talent for hooking readers by the gums and dragging them along for the wild ride, still includes bonus points for the M!Shepard/Miranda fans out there, and for including intelligent and natural interactions between the Normandy crew.

Inglorious Boshtets by 500MetricTonnesofPalladium
  • Recommended by Kalaong
  • Pairing(s): Tali/Shepard, though nothing more than hints and remarks from Tali's side.
  • Synopsis: Tali has been stuck with a bad assignment and a worse crew after returning to the Migrant Fleet. During what should have been a routine scanning mission, Hilarity Ensues and the ship time travels back to Earth, 2005... and that's just her first mission!
  • Comments: A well written fic with enough humor in it to keep things light but retaining some serious moments. Some of the details of the Mass Effect universe have been sacrificed for the story, but if you can get over that it is well worth a look and at the very least Tali is beautifully in character.

Project Gethinator by 500MetricTonnesofPalladium
  • Recommended by Two Gun Angel
  • Pairing(s): Tali/Shepard again
  • Synopsis: The sequel to Inglorious Bosh'tets. Tali is back on the Normandy with Shepard, Garrus and a new crew, but it seems that the universe hasn't quite finished with her yet, as more craziness follows their every step.
  • Comments: Another well-written fic from the mind behind Inglorious Bosh'tets. This one is more of a mystery plot than the utter craziness of Bosh'tets, but still with a good deal of fun.

The Selfish Gene by Buggirl
  • Recommended by Spark Moon
  • Synopsis: From the summary: Miranda is dealing with some personal issues. Will she open up to someone about her problems, or will she remain the 'Ice Queen' that everybody has labelled her?
  • Comments: Centered around a particular Lair of the Shadow Broker dossier spoiler that divided Miranda's fanbase, this story tackles an extremely sensitive issue with aplomb and the utmost care. This is especially notable, as it draws from the author's own experiences on the issue while still keeping the characters -especially Miranda- in character. By far one of the more poignant and thoughtful fan fics I've read in the fandom, in my opinion.

Who Saves the Hero? by Kudara
  • Recommended by Sithking Zero
  • Synopsis: Shepard had been brought back from death by Cerberus, but she suspects TIM has manipulated her into working for him and that he has his own hidden agenda. Who can she trust besides Garrus and Tali to help her discern the truth? Will be FemShep/Samara.
  • Pairing(s): FemShep/Samara, though this is notably NOT the point of this story.
  • Tags: Slightly lemon, also female/female relationships.
  • Comments: Wow. This story is one of the several fics that is a re-written version of ME2, but done in a really, really awesome way. Starts out with Shepard being very paranoid about Cerberus and the Illusive Man, but that in itself starts off a chain of events that really make this story stand out. A very different Shepard, one who actually thinks about where funds are coming from, one who is trying to seek out the best in everyone, and making it look good while doing it. Actually, I'm not doing a good job at summing it up. Just read it.
    • Spark Moon: The only thing that holds me back from giving it my full endorsement is that I prefer a celibate Samara (personal preference, sorry), but that aside, it is a well-written fic that pulls off a somewhat-saintly, but still flawed Shepard rather well.
    • I would recommend this, but the author's grammar is abysmal. The story is interesting, but the constant mechanical errors detract from the presentation.

The Long Walk by Prisoner 24601
  • Recommended by Spark Moon
  • Synopsis: Jacob Taylor deals with the death of Miranda Lawson, by speaking with Kelly Chambers and has a conversation-so to speak-with EDI and Joker.
  • Comments: Seeing as I love fan fic where Kelly Chambers isn't relegated to the disgusting and tired old jokes of being the ship's bicycle and is treated as a professional counselor, that alone makes this story worth reccing. Not only that, but so often we've seen how Shepard reacts to the deaths of various teammates... we rarely ever see it done from the POV of a squadmate. Prisoner tackles this with Jacob-another ill-treated character in fandom-with a maturity that makes both chapters very much worth reading.

The Uncounted by Moranth
  • Recommended by Spark Moon
  • Synopsis: From the summary: ''A series of oneshots exploring what *might be* the motives and final moments of the mercs you encounter on many of the missions in Mass Effect 2
  • Comments: In a sea of hamfisted romantic fluff and tacky self-inserts, this is a concept that shows incredible promise. While it's only one chapter in-and extremely short-, it manages to breathe life into a nameless mercenary and, in just under 700 words, gives him a character that may make you feel kinda bad for shooting him. Here's hoping for more in the future and that it's not another Dead Fic already.

Engineered by jtav
  • Recommended by Spark Moon
  • Synopsis: From the summary: Miranda's father considers his dynasty, his daughter, and the man in her life. Contains M!Shepard/Miranda, but it's technically not a shipping fic in the conventional sense.
  • Comments: A chilling story from the POV of Miranda's father concerning an issue that to this day still divides Miranda's fanbase. Miranda herself is quite in character (I winced at one of her suggestions, but regardless of personal feelings, it was in-character of her to say), which is a plus. A short, but well-done read.

The Galaxy Needs Heroes by paul16
  • Recommended by Tepoztecal
  • Synopsis: From the summary: After Sovereign's death some of the aftershocks run in unexpected directions.
  • Comments: It has been said of Mass Effect 2 that the game proves Good Is Not Nice. This fic proves Shepard doesn't need to go Renegade to be a cold-blooded sociopath.
    • While I would say that the story itself is actually quite good, the author is horrible with punctuation. Missing commas where there should be, a lack of scene breaks, and otherwise poor use of punctuation make for an annoyingly distracting read.

Noir Tali Is Noir by NuclearBuddha and RiptideX1090
  • Recommended by Cinereous, pcy623
  • Synopsis: The rain came down like bullets, each leaving a raw mark on my suit. I couldn't feel them, not with the suit. Then again, I'd stopped feeling things like that a long time ago. Two years ago. The Normandy.
  • Comments: As the title says, a story written in Film Noir style, a look at Tali and her life during the two years after the destruction of the SSV Normandy. A Darker and Edgier story that paints an incredibly depressing look at what it is to be a quarian in a galactic society that despises them. This is a Tali who is full of quiet anger, hardened, bitter, and numb to the world, an empty shell whose one source of happiness was snuffed out two years ago. The two authors have created a story that fits amazingly well within canon events and truly takes the reader on a roller-coaster ride of emotions. (Note: To read this story and view the authors' profiles/blogs, you must sign up for an account on the Bioware social boards).

Broken Wings by Coombs
  • Recommended by Ghastdream
  • Synopsis: From the summary: After the destruction of the Normandy, Joker is grounded and returns to Arcturus Station. Cerberus recruits him. Rated M for strong language and sexual content.
  • Comments: It's quite an angsty take on Joker's reactions after the crash. Might be a bit drawn out, but worth it for the relationship explorations.

Spectre by Caine/Precept (Also available on FF.Net)
  • Recommended by: Gentlemens Dame 883
  • Synopsis: John Shepard is a man haunted by ghosts. Can he rise above his past to save the galaxy?
  • Pairing(s): Seems to be moving towards Shep/Tali.
  • Comments: A novelisation of the first game that the author really makes his own. While the plot doesn't diverge too greatly, it's in the character work that this shines, especially how the author depicts Shepard as struggling with his past rather than as canon's much less ambiguous hero.

Progress Reimagined by urapente
  • Recommended by Cinereous
  • Pairings: Some vague hints of (Male) Shepard/Tali, onesided Prazza/Tali, but this is not a shipping fic.
  • Synopsis: A greatly expanded novelization of the initial meeting on Freedom's Progress between Shepard, his Cerberus squadmates, and Tali's team.
  • Comments: The author turns what was a quick thirty minute intro mission into a multi-chapter story that showcases Tali and how she has matured and become a cynical, darker character after the events of ME1. Make no mistake: though the viewpoint character is Shepard, Tali is definitely the protagonist of this story. The initial meeting between the two is handled much more realistically than in-game, and Prazza's anger at and eventual betrayal of her are explored in serious depth, ending in a climax that chilled this troper to the bone. If you're tired of a Tali that is written as nothing but a blushing moeblob whose entire world revolves around Shepard, this is a welcome change of pace. Coincidentally, the general atmosphere and feel of the story is shockingly similar to Noir Tali Is Noir (which this troper also recommended) despite being written independently of each other. The author himself has high praise for that story on his Deviantart journal.
    • (There is also an alternate version of Chapter 2 told from Tali's point of view here on the author's Deviantart gallery.)
    • This Troper personally found that Shepard was thinking a wee bit too much about Tali considering he was in the middle of a combat situation. Also, the whole eye-implants deal felt like a red herring.

Aliens Are Weird by KiwiDayDreams
  • Recommended by: Kuro Rei, Alynnidalar, USA Bobcat
  • Synopsis: AU. Shepard and Garrus meet when they're much younger at the Citadel childcare center. Garrus has never seen a human before and Shepard has never seen a Turian up close. Shenanigans ensue as they both find out that aliens are really weird.
  • Comments: A cute one-shot with Shepard and Garrus as completely normal kids. Bit of a long read, but will put a smile on your face. Cameos with Wrex and Conrad.
    • Recommendation seconded by Alynnidalar. This is just plain adorable! You can definitely see that even when they were young, Garrus and Shepard (in this case, a female Spacer Shepard, most likely Paragon) had the foundations for the awesome people we know and love today. And Wrex's cameo is fantastic. Sure, we tend to think of him as the big, bad battlemaster who can crush a Geth prime by glaring at it too hard, but somehow it still fits him that he'd be nice to kids.

Storytellers by IphigeniaWrites
  • Recommended by Tropulastic
  • Synopsis: After the war against the Reapers, Shepard's story is a legend. After the war, many people across different species tell her story... in their own ways.
  • Comments: It's an original idea and decently executed. It's interesting to see how all the aliens tell (and outright change) the story to emphasize the parts their species cares the most about: the Krogan praise Shepard's worth in battle, the volus praise her skills in commerce...

Friends Like These by ElectricZ
  • Recommended by Pyjak, USA Bobcat
  • Synopsis: Takes place towards the start of ME2. Tali begins to notice Shepard disappearing from the ship at odd times and convinces Garrus, Joker and Dr. Chakwas to follow him to find out why.
  • Comments: Funny while staying completely in character, with the kind of sniping and bitching you'd expect from people who spend waaaay too much time together. The humor comes completely from knowing the characters, as opposed to having dialogue filled with a bunch of OOC one liners. Becomes even funnier when they catch up to Shepard and discover he's ducking out so he can escape a diet imposed by Miranda and has been doing so for months. It becomes a battle of wills between Garrus who wants to turn him in, and Shepard who is trying his best to bribe his crew to cover for him.
    • Freakin' hilarious. The author's got a knack for dialogue and the characters are spot on. A lot of humorfics go over the top, but this one is intelligent, well written and has a good plot for as short as it is. Shepard and Garrus's verbal sparring in the third chapter is especially fun, as is everyone teasing Tali for being a secret Shepard stalker. Also, the crew's responses when he challenges them to name the most fit person on the ship made me laugh out loud for real. Moved this one to General Fics because while funny, it focuses a lot on Garrus, Tali, Joker and the Doctor and why they are loyal to Commander Shepard.
    • Seconded. Everything Pyjack said is true. A lovely taste of comedy in a universe that can be rather grim.

KOKOMO by ghost.713
  • Recommended by: Ghastdream, Tikigod784
  • Synopsis: "Even vermin have a story." This is about a Vorcha
  • Comments: Tragic and beautifully written, especially concerning its alien perspective.
    • A great look into the "society" of a race that BioWare probably only intended as simple cannon fodder. If this were canon, a Vorcha squad mate could arguably have the most alien dialogue in the game.

Mass Vexations by Herr Wozzeck
  • Recommended by: Sithking Zero, Catheri, Ameriken
  • Synopsis: "Vexations. Music of Erik Satie. Somehow, it transported me to the Mass Effect universe. Might as well make the best of it, and by that I mean help the crew stop Saren and the Geth, all without telling my real origins. Self-insert. Kaidan/Shepard."
  • Comments: THE Mass Effect Self Insert fanfiction on the internet. As far as I'm concerned, the only one. While self-inserts are dime-a-dozen, this story is in defiance of Sturgeon's law. Well-written, the main character is not a Mary Sue, the interactions feel totally natural, and all-around greatness. Now, in interest of fairness, it does have its negative points. The main character, Art, tends to go off on rants about things that the author feels strongly about. The first story is merely okay, while the sequel is far improved in terms of storytelling capability. However, those aren't enough to take away how good this story is. Has three sequels: Mass Vexations 2 (covering the second Mass Effect game), and Mass Vexations 3.
    • I thought this story was not enjoyable at all. The protagonist is highly unlikable (not to mention borderlines on a God Mode Stu status at times, or too close to it for my liking), Art's random rants take me more out of the story than the rest of it already does, the story stretches even the most sturdy suspensions of disbelief-and not in a good way- and it's a chore to read even in some of the more funnier moments (which there are few). Unless it's somehow either a cleverly disguised Deconstruction and/or a Stealth Parody of self-insert fics in general, then pass.
      • The above opinion represents this troper's opinion of Mass Vexations 3, but will admit that the first one is by far the best. the dialog feels somewhat flat, the characters repeat a few phrases not suited to them, and there are some choices made in MV3 that are just flat-out annoying (No examples will be given, to prevent spoilers).
      • I second this fic. I enjoyed Art's rants and didn't find any of the God Mode Stu issues that the above poster did as it seemed more of a case of Earn Your Happy Ending. In my opinion, it is definitely worth reading as I finished the first one awhile ago and am now spending my current break catching up on the sequels, which are turning out to be even better so far. A definite recommend and a must-read for anyone who loves ME fanfiction or needs to have their faith restored when it comes to Self Inserts.
      • I third this fic. Unllike [[Sturgeon's Law most fanfics]], it's actually well-written. It's consistently interesting, too. As far as crossover fan fiction goes, this one is definitely worth a read.

Masses To Masses by Inf3ctionz
  • Recommended by: S3ek, Gone Rampant, XxChronOblivionxX
  • Synopsis: “After a freak event sends me into the ME universe 2 years before ME1, I find myself working at C-Sec. As if dealing with serial killers, drug smugglers, and Garrus Vakarian wasn't enough, I need to work out why I was sent here, and I need to survive.”
  • Comments: A Mass Effect Self Insert that feature an Unlikely Hero: Ian Shaw, a British law student with very little in the way of training for detective work or a military operation. He learns. Better yet, this story starts two years before the start of Mass Effect. The first of the series begins before Mass Effect 1 where Ian is Garrus’ partner as a detective, the second begins when Garrus and Ian meet Shepard on the Citadel and features the events of the game, and the third installment begins with the destruction of the Normandy and features Ian’s escapades as Deadpool, part of Archangel’s crew. It’s one of the most popular Mass Effect Self Inserts, rivaling the fame of Mass Vexations.
    • One of my favourite Mass Effect fanfics, period. Ian's First-Person Smartass narration makes the fanfic hilarious, action packed and essential to any fanfic reader. Also has a spinoff, Masses To Masses Zero, which focuses on Garrus a day before Ian shows up while Garrus is on a case.
    Ian Shaw (has) done gotten himself more famous than Arnold Schwarzenegger's pecs. - Sarge1995
    Masses To Masses is the fanfiction equivalent of the Avengers movie-brilliant, action packed and hilarious throughout with a deep story and awesome plot-twists. -Gone Rampant
    • And to prove that this has replaced Mass Vexations as the essential Mass Effect Self Insert, Masses To Masses as a series has more reviews on Fanfiction.Net then Mass Vexations, and more reviews per story.

Mass Effect 2 AU Lanius by College Fool
  • Recommended by: P Sychotic, Gentlemens Dame 883
  • Synopsis: When the Shadow Broker brings the Commander back, Cerberus is behind the colony abductions for unclear reasons, and a fallen hero of the Alliance who can foil even Shepard is at the head of it, it's just the start of a different Mass Effect 2... ME2 AU
  • Comments: A complete reimagining of ME2, and absolutely fantastic. The only problem is the occasional misspelling. It's similar to Renegade Reinterpretations (the author wrote both), in that it's less like reading a story and more like reading how Mass Effect could have been.

First Contact by Animus of Masada
  • Recommended by: Alynnidalar, Tropulastic, BioD
  • Synopsis: An Asari exploration vessel discovers Earth in the 2030's...and the first contact scenario has incredible implications for both species. What does humanity look like through alien eyes? Where do they go from here?
  • Comments: An interesting look at what would happen if humanity became part of the galactic community Twenty Minutes into the Future—and, more importantly, if the Asari were the first to meet us, rather than the Turians. As you can imagine, things turn out quite peacefully... although there are hints at darker conspiracies revolving around this new species. Starts off very light-hearted and comedic (humanity's first words to an alien species are pretty classic), slowly turning more serious as it continues, but never entirely losing the light-heartedness.
    • Liking it so far. I'm a sucker for the Humans Through Alien Eyes trope, and even if there seem to be a few mistakes in accuracy, I'm liking the Rousseau Was Right undertones of the first contact.
    • It's something of a Scrap Book Story. The anachronic order and multiple format story telling (from the normal prose to fake alien essays) are interesting and provides some incredibly emotional moments. If the recovery of the Mars rovers doesn't make you well up a little you might lack empathy all together.

Mass Effect 3: After the Fall by FenrisMarine
  • Recommended by: thatdude, Bustamouse
  • Pairing: Paragon!Shepard/Tali
  • Synopsis: A fanmade epilogue about what happen to the races stranded in the Sol system after the Destroy ending.
  • Comments: Let's not beat around the bush here, the ending to Mass Effect 3 was... less then disirable. This fic however is not a Fix Fic but rather an attempt to at least salvage it. It gives us what the actual ending didn't: Closure, the aftermath of the war, and a somewhat happy ending. Its not perfect, but it's a lot better then what we got.

Mass Effect: Circular by Gregg Landsman
  • Recommended by: The Curator, USA Bobcat, Unclouded TJ, Vellaen
  • Synopsis: From the man who brought us Nobody Dies comes the epic continuation of the Mass Effect Franchise. The ending of Mass Effect 3 was not the beginning of the end. It was not the end of the end. It was simply the end of the beginning.
  • Pairing(s): None
  • Tags: Fix Fic (sort of), Mental Time Travel
  • Warnings: YMMV strongly, as there is a bit of handwaving in the first chapter that some may find to be excessive. Additionally, if you are the 1% that liked the endings, Gregg has done away with them completely.
    • Author's note: I actually do like the endings. -Gregg
  • Comments: Imagine, if you will, Shepard being more badass then before. Then imagine that Gregg Landsman wrote about what happens given Shepard’s newfound badassery. There is absolutely no way conceivable under the laws of the universe for this not to be awesome. And it is. It totally is. Also Javik meets a Hanar. Hilarity Ensues.

Unending by Halm Vendrella
  • Recommended by: Vellaen, Bustamouse
  • Synopsis: The Crucible is activated. The Reapers are destroyed. And a man who should be dead takes a breath. Find out how Commander Shepard survived... and what the Catalyst's deception means for the galaxy.
  • Status: Complete, though with something of a Twist Ending / Sequel Hook, on which YMMV.
  • Comments: The title is as sarcastic as it sounds. One of many fics written in rebellion against the Mass Effect 3 endings, and another possible take on the Indoctrination Theory. The author tries to justify why Shepard survives the destroy ending, along with tackling an assortment of other questions left unanswered by canon. The characters are well-presented, and there's a familiar flavor to the banter between squadmates. Wrex returns, and he's the same old troll from the first game.

Black Moon Rising by santi01
  • Recommended by: Dr Jekyl
  • Synopsis: " A by-the-book detective finds a her simple investigation into odd rumours of drink spiking in Eternity spiraling out of control. Soon she and an unconventional asari matriarch are tearing up Nos Astra in pursuit of answers and maybe a little revenge.
  • Comments: A Mass Effect-flavoured classic buddy-cop drama with a noir twist. Action, adventure and arse-kicking with beats of humour. Plus, Matriarch Aethyta, who's always a winner. The link goes to the first installment; for the rest you'll unfortunately need to go through the author's deviant art account.

In Times of War by ML Gumm
  • Recommended by: openseseme
  • Synopsis: From plot summary-In times of war friends pop up from the oddest places. A human colony kid, barely fifteen and a turian C-Sec officer closing in on twice her age certainly count as an odd pair of friends, but war has a way of bringing us together, even as it tears us apart.
  • Comments: A tale of friendship told through minimalistic prose that creates a vivid picture of who each character is and how they interact. The shortness of the chapters can be hard to get used to at first, but this troper thinks the story works largely because of the simplicity. Currently a work in progress.
    • Now complete. Be warned, while most of the story is funny and sweet it starts to get darker towards the end, which is heartbreaking.

From Hell's Heart by gtamaster316
  • Recommended by: MetalKing1417
  • Synopsis: A fic where the so called "First Contact War" between the Humans and the Turians blossomed into a full out 47 year war between Humans and the Turians.
  • Comments: A surprisingly well written fic that explores the implications of what might have happened if negotiations broke down between humans in the Turians. Several Cannon characters receive different, though reasonable recharacterizations in this fic, one of the most noticeable being Sarren, who now has an entirely different view of humans thanks to an encounter with one, as well as the fact that humanity had to make some, less than savory deals with factions that other fics tend to have them at war with like the Batarians.

Conception by lloyd007

Marauder Shields by koobismo
  • Recommended by Mr.Underhill, Bustamouse
  • Synopsis: A brilliant set of comics that started out silly but is quickly evolving into a viable alternate ME3 ending in its own right. Koobismo takes the Indoctrination Theory and runs with it, detailing what the rest of Shepard's squad (including the ME2 cast who were Demoted To Extras in the canon game) is doing while s/he is out of commission. It will be very interesting to see how this one pans out. Now has a trope page.

Survivors by dragondrewversion2
  • Recommended by: TheJabawack
  • Synopsis: Four strangers; a human, a krogan, a turian, and a quarian; are stranded in London during the Reaper invasion of Earth. Forced together through strange circumstances, they'll need to work together if they hope to survive...
  • Comments: First of all a warning, this fic is centered around four O Cs and there is no Shepard in sight, he is mentioned in passing by other characters when appropriate but he is not part of the story. That said, the characters feel real and their interactions are handled quite well. There is plenty of action and the banter between the characters is really good.

Race Against Time by AllianceCommand
  • Recommended by ConnMann
  • Synopsis: A colony under siege. An ancient relic unearthed. A warning of extinction. A traitor on the run. A war hero in pursuit. It was supposed to be a simple shake-down run. But nothing is ever simple, is it?
  • Status: Discontinued so that the writer can focus on pure smut instead.
  • Comments: A novelization of the first Mass Effect game. Surprisingly well written considering the author had just been writing smut up until this point. Won me over in the second chapter by giving two criminally neglected characters some time in the spotlight. Quite funny, too.

Destroyed by That'sNotMe
  • Recommended by Tov01
  • Synopsis: After destroying the Reapers, Shepard is recovered from the rubble and begins her slow recovery. But the physical wounds are far easier to heal than the psychological one as she struggles to come to terms with the decision she made on the Citadel.
  • Comments: A very well done one-shot that is equal parts heartwarming and tear jerker.

The Future That I See by Lycanwolff
  • Recommended by: Trogdor7620
  • Synopsis: What happens when a young woman is sucked through time and discovers that the Mass Effect universe is to become our true future? Something a lot like this. Features MaleShep/Ashley, Kaidan/OC.
  • Tags: Some minor sexual and graphic themes, with a few sex scenes.
  • Comments: Excellently written, a gripping story that covers everything from Eden Prime to the Reaper Invasion. Has a fair bit of You Can't Fight Fate themes, but it's worth checking out.

Forfeit by artistic mishap
  • Recommended by: Full-Paragon
  • Synopsis: Admiral Hackett must deal with running a post-reaper Earth, and deal with the fact that his daughter, Riley Shepard, is likely dead.
  • Tags: Has some very disturbing but realistic looks at likely fall out from a Destroy ending. Rated T, drama/tragedy.
  • Comments: Very well written,very intimate look into Stephen Hackett's mind and answers the question of just who Shepard's father is. Has a Garrus/Shepard Hackett/Hanna Shepard pairings, but those may be on hold due to death or trauma.

Aftermath by RobinFoster
  • Recommended by: achus93again
  • Synopsis: Post-Mass Effect 3 – Destroy Ending, Paragon, Spacer, Soldier, Liara romance. Based on experiences of Commander Jess Shepard, Alliance Soldier and Human Spectre. Jess Shepard was certain the end to the Reapers would be the end to her as well. When she finds herself alive instead she struggles to pick up the pieces and find her way again.
  • Comments: Wonderful story that captures the events that could potentially happen Post-Reaper War, not to mention bits and pieces of fanservice dropped by the author. It's a happy ending to one of the most gut-wrenching endings for the game.

The Really, Really, Really long version of How I'd cast Cerberus... by Dean_the_Young
  • Recommended by: arcanephoenix
  • Synopsis: A reinterpretation and sort-of rewriting of Cerberus's role in Mass Effect 3 and it's effects on the plot as a whole.
  • Comments: It may take an hour to read, but it is fully worth your time. The man has essentially rewritten Mass Effect 3 while maintaining internal consistency, no mean feat. It is calm, precise and quite beautifully put together. While I liked how the trilogy ended in canon, I would have seriously loved this.

And The Meek Shall Inherit The Galaxy by Full-Paragon
  • Completed
  • Recommended by: eduardogranja, Kalvan
  • Synopsis: When Captain Rael'Zorah decides to check out strange activity at Relay 314 due to a slight shift in the path of the Migrant Fleet, he finds more then just Turians. Hannah Shepard becomes one of the first humans to ever meet an alien, and first contact for humanity begins not with a war, but with gifts for a young John Shepard and Tali'Zorah. AU First contact, human/Quarian.
  • Pairings: M Shepard/Tali (Toy Ship at the moment) Hackett/OC Quarian Admiral, Henry Lawson/Daro'Xen I am not making this up!!
  • Tags: Not Safe for Work due to graphic violence in some chapters, as the Relay 314 Incident still happened and was a little worse in this fic. Also, Jack was spared Teltin... because she was raised by Krogan instead.
  • Comments: The complete change from the canon is refreshing, with the Quarians and humans integrating in a completely different level. The fanfic progresses to a cold war between the Council and the Quarian/human/Krogan "League" and the whole galaxy is a lot more well armed. Extra points for the young squadmates appearing a lot, specially Jack and Miranda.
  • An interesting AU fic asking what if human First Contact had happened with the Quarians, and then the Turians had accidentally fired on an unarmed hospital ship, causing the Quarians to come to its rescue. Note that while some things turn out for the happier, particularly for the Quarians, other things look to be turning for the worse. For example, the Batarians look to be getting a council seat soon, as a means to box humans in at the Local and Exodus Clusters, and it looks like all the Geth will be supporting Sovereign.
    • YMMV on some of these. For those who read a lot of Mass Effect fan fiction, parts of it read as a tiny bit of human wank, and the grammar/word choice sometimes comes across as lacking. The Human/Quarian alliance also comes about a little too fast for my tastes, happening mere days after first contact. Humanity also comes across as somewhat hive-minded, with most people agreeing with the group consensus, which is particularly strange for a Mass Effect story (where humans are noted to have much more variety than other species (we see Colonists who want nothing to do with the Alliance and Cerberus, just for the most obvious examples in the games). The Tali-Shepard romance feels somewhat forced and wooden, and character interactions are not where this story shines. On the other hand, it's fairly enjoyable, with deep plots, secret agreements, and machiavellian scheming. It also genuinely makes the process of indoctrination terrifying, something that many other stories simply gloss over in favor of using it to make bad guys. In short, I'd recommend, but take it with a grain of salt that it's not gonna be one of the best. -Sithking Zero

Helping Hand by ENECON
  • Recommended by: Demiserof D
  • Synopsis: A different take on Kelly's famous(or infamous) dance scene at the end of ME2. Fem Shep x Kelly
  • Comments: A very interesting(and heartwarming) take on the aforementioned dancing scene. Short, but well worth the read. WAFF incoming!

Mass Effect Reloaded by theblueninja
  • Recommended by: lurkbbs, Unclouded TJ
  • Synopsis: Facing the Catalyst, Adept Jane Shepard takes the Kirk path, and cheats. Thrown back in time to the very start of her Spectre career, can she actually save the entire galaxy from the Reapers, or will everything end up the same despite her knowledge of the future? Shakarian shipping.
  • Comments: One of the rarest Peggy Sue fanfics where main character tries to changes everything from the very beginning, without some "want to know the future so will do things exactly as before" crap. Excellent language, on par and surpassing many professional writers. Fast-paced when needed, relaxing when needed, funny when needed, serious when needed. Good characterization, both canon and OC.

Children of Nemesis by Solaris242
  • Recommended by Brownie In Motion
  • Status: In progress.
  • Synopsis: "There was a theory once, about Nemesis, the Dark Star. Stillborn twin to the sun, it wandered the void, black and cold, and every 25 thousand years, came back home. AU."
  • Comments: Once again, Solaris242 comes through with an innovative, unique take on humans and their role in the Mass Effect 'verse. The author's tendency to Humanity Wank balances with a refreshing look into settings and circumstances that typically go unexplored, and, let's face it—seeing the humans kick ass is a lot of fun. Only a few chapters have been released, however; his/her other work, Transcendent Humanity, seems to have priority at the moment.

    Shipping Fics 
Stories focused on the romantic relationships between the cast.

The Fourth Option by commandocucumber
  • Recommended by: [LooksAwesome]
  • Pairing: M!Shepard/Miranda Lawson
  • Synopsis: "John Shepard and Miranda Lawson have survived the Reaper War, now all they have to do is square away the galaxy's problems before they can move on with their own lives. Together."
  • Comments: The writer began typing this out almost immediately after they finished their first playthrough of Mass Effect 3 in response to, well, you know... The Reapers are defeated (sort of), but Shepard is now forced to confront what exactly the events of his life and the choices he has made along the way have cost him as a human being. He vents his anger, he rants over his regrets, he laments his flaws and cries under the crushing weight of his guilt, and he carefully admits that his love for Miranda was all that kept him going. In addition to his own personal crisis, Shepard has to deal with a galaxy on the edge of (another) war, a treacherous Alliance brass - including his own mother, no less, a grieving Quarian mechanic, a (duh!) useless Council, and, of course, his paranoid and neurotic girlfriend. Stands as one of the best Miri/Shepard fics out there.
    • Miranda has her own spot in the limelight; including the opportunity to explain key events from her perspective, interact with Hannah Shepard and Tali, and share her deepest insecurities with Shepard.
  • Status: Complete

Iunctio by Sinvraal
  • Recommended by Damsel Of Distress, Joysweeper, Tropulastic
  • Pairing: Female Shepard/Kaidan, mild Joker/Ashley
  • Synopsis: Explorations, variations and off-camera moments from the main storyline. Multiple character POVs.
  • Comments: Tempted to put this in general fics as lots of other character interactions is explored than just Shenko. Utter brilliant attention to narrative detail and is easily one of the best Mass Effect fics.

Manipulations by akg.writes
  • Recommended by Tropulastic
  • Pairing: Female Shepard/Kaidan Alenko, Ship Tease of Garrus and Kasumi
  • Warnings: Out of 65+ chapters, a few of them have explicit content
  • Synopsis: Shepard has newfound biotic powers, thanks to the Lazarus Project. She doesn't know how to use them though, so a certain L2 biotic is hired to be her teacher. But things won't be easy: Shepard and Kaidan aren't on good terms, and neither are Alliance and Cerberus officers. They'll all have to work together, as there are bigger interests in play. And why was Shepard turned into a biotic, anyway?
  • Comments: There's some good technical explanations of the Mass Effect lore, and the plot is Original Flavour of good quality. Just for that it's worth checking, even if the story moves slowly. However, the fic's true strength is characterization: most characters make an appearance, they're all very good at their jobs, and they're all consistent with their in-game versions. Of all of them, Shepard, Kaidan and Miranda are the most fleshed out: their behaviors and actions are carefully examined, compared, contrasted, and their points of view make for an entertaining read of the fic's events, as well as give access to their hidden depths. As for the romance, their relationship compares their past and their present, which makes it kind of bittersweet... but deep down, they still care for each other. Overall, it's a sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes heartwarming, mostly fun ride, and if you like snarky writing and long fanfics, you'll love every second of it.

Persephone Rising by ansinna (A shared account belonging to Evil Sapphyre, jillyfae, and SiaLater)
  • Recommended by Lady Demonique, Pyrotorch246
  • Pairing: fem!Shepard/Joker, fem!Shepard/Kaidan, fem!Shepard/Garrus.
  • Synopsis: From the summary: Three Shepards were born, instead of just one. Alexis Shepard, the Spacer and War Hero, as beautiful as she is driven. Ella Shepard, the Mindoir-born, Butcher of Torfan with a heart of gold. Meghan Shepard, Earthborn reformed criminal and the Sole Survivor of Akuze. They've all been assigned to the Normandy SR-1 for her shake-down cruise. But no one ever sends these marines out together for just a shake-down cruise...
  • Comments: A single Commander Shepard is already pretty damn Badass, but putting three different combinations of Shepard's backgrounds together just takes the awesome Up to Eleven. The three authors who co-write this fanfic work together very well, and manage to make their respective Shepards believable. The action sequences are brilliant, the pacing fast but not rushed, and the exploration of the Shepards' relationship with their Love Interests are handled sensitively. All in all, a very entertaining read.
    • The story is reasonably well written (I'm a little tough to please in that department), and what Lady Demonique said holds true in my opinion too. What caught my eye is the attention to detail with the more military part of the fic-how the crew and the Shepards interact, and how things are dealt with, plus certain bits of terminology. It's enough to convince me (if it isn't clear by now, I like seeing that sort of thing done right) that at least one of the authors is or was either a marine or a sailor, which makes it that much more interesting.
    • While the story is well written, the fact that the three protagonists are named shepard can make it quite confusing at to whom their are talkign about. Also, I had the impression Kaidan's butt (all of his body) kept coming up in every discussion the three Shepard have for the 20 first chapters. while not plot relevants or importants, it can be quite irritating. cricri3007.

Modus Operandi by Pereprin
  • Recommended by Tolgron
  • Pairing: Garrus/Shepard
  • Synopsis: Starting just after Shepard receives command of the Normandy, Modus Operandi flits back and forth between Shepard's current missions and interactions with her crew, and the story of how she came to be the woman capable of being the first human Spectre. All the while, increasingly towards the ending chapters, Shepard forms a rather complicated relationship with her Turian squadmate, Garrus Vakarian. Rated M for adult language and rather steamy romance scenes.
  • Comments: Easily one of the best Mass Effect fanfics out there, the narrative is approached maturely and with utmost respect for the source it draws from. The dialogue is so believable that you can quite easily hear the characters speaking as you read it, and the narrative is very skillfully woven together such that you can't help but keep reading. Top class stuff.

Strange Bedfellows by Phoenike
  • Recommended by LoganLee88
  • Synopsis: An alternate take to the love scene between Garrus and Shepard before the Omega-4 Relay and a post-Suicide Mission chapter as well.
  • Pairing: Garrus/Shepard
  • Comments: Unlike majority of Garrus/Shep fics this troper has read, this fic isn't all fluffy and stuff. It can be quite explicit in parts but what fascinates is how the pair are incompatible in some physical ways. Additionally, (not to give away any spoilers) this fiction reminds players that not everyone gets perfect playthroughs.

The Thane Krios Experience by littleblackdog
  • Recommended by Joysweeper
  • Pairings: Garrus/Shepard, Garrus/Thane.
  • Synopsis: Nervous about the mechanics of blowing off steam with a human, Garrus seeks advice about the bane of xeno-loving Turians throughout the galaxy— how is this kissing thing supposed to work, especially when you've got no lips?
  • Comments: It actually might fit better in the Humor section, but eh. The title's a reference to The Jimi Hendrix Experience, and despite an awkward line or two it's just fun.

Rock Steady by Gagged Cenobite
  • Recommended by Herr Wozzeck, pcy623, Oracle, USA Bobcat
  • Pairing: Thane/Jack
  • Synopsis: Nobody's really whole, we're just broken in different ways from each other. Jack learns this as her friendship with a certain Drell assassin slowly intensifies.
  • Comments: One would think pairing a violent, manic-depressive, and overall bitchy character like Jack with a character who is pretty much her exact opposite would be impossible. And yet, Gagged Cenobite makes such a relationship work beautifully here, bringing Jack and Thane together in ways that are quite unexpected and yet work so well. The scenes before the Omega 4 relay especially make this pairing work; it could almost be a canon pairing the way it is handled so respectfully and delicately. Definitely a recommended read based on the strength of the character development on Jack's end throughout, too.
    • Also there's a lovely cameo of Kasumi that's very in character. This is important because the author wrote this BEFORE Kasumi was released as DLC.

Taking Back Yesterday by Gagged Cenobite
  • Recommended by JackInqu
  • Pairing: Thane/Jack
  • Synopsis: An exercise in getting rid of unwanted tenants. Is it worth it to plan, organize, and execute a full-on assault on the biggest arms dealer in Citadel space, just to get some alone-time? You bet your ass it is.
  • Comments: A sequel/side-story to Rock Steady, Jack and Thane help Kasumi with her mission to retrieve her partner's graybox from Donovan Hock. Only two chapters at this time, but it looks like it will be up to the standards of it's preceding story. Jack continues to go through Character Development while Thane deals with some loose ends of his own. Oh, and Liara T'Soni makes an appearance. Spoilers for Kasumi's mission and "The Lair of the Shadow Broker."

A Harmless Pastime by Pigblossom.
  • Recommended by Doug S Machina, Oracle, Ka Blamoid 4 Life, Beckett, montagohalcyon.
  • Pairings: Plenty, including Female Shepard/Liara and Kelly -> Shepard.
  • Synopsis: Snooping through the Normandy's computer systems, Miranda discovers Shepard's hobby of writing explicit slash fiction about her colleagues. Hilarity Ensues.
    • Read it, it's hilarious.
    • Between Jacob's astonishment and horror, the revelation of Garrus' big secret, and Jack's constant swearing... what's not to love?
    • Don't forget Tali's talking about "revolutionizing Quarian sex lives".
    • Not dissimilar to this.
    • The story's been removed from FF.net. You'll have to look elsewhere. TT^TT

Razor's Edge by Tairis Deamhan
  • Recommended by Herr Wozzeck, Sigge, Bustamouse, nitewind, Crimson Shogun, midorigreen
  • Pairings: Tali/Shepard
  • Synopsis: Life is all about finding something worth living for, the question is what is that when you're a spectre that has already died once? John Shepard seeks to find this out as he begins to realize the extent of his feelings to a certain Quarian engineer...
  • Comments: Possibly the single finest example of Tali/Shepard I can find anywhere on the internet. Tairis Deamhan has a real eye for character development; everything flows incredibly naturally in terms of character actions, and when we finally begin to get Tali and Shepard's romance after a very slow build-up, it's astoundingly beautiful. It's also a great read given how he manages to treat all of the missions/assignments in the fic, giving so much more emotional edge to each one (of particular note is his treatment of Samara's loyalty mission).
    • Seconded, sure it contains some misspellings and faulty grammars but is really well done and is a very good read.
      • Fortunately, the author is currently (while also writing Requiem) in the process of correcting the grammatical errors of the prior stories.
    • The sequel, Dark Witness, is also complete. It covers the events of Lair of the Shadow Broker, still with plenty of Shep/Tali goodness.
    • The third installment in the series, Requiem, has begun, and will follow the events of Mass Effect 3, with many creative liberties taken. Such as Shepard struggling with indoctrination while a Reaper avatar in the form of a ghostly Saren haunts his dreams.

For Such Loss, Abundant Recompense by kalenel
  • Recommended by Mad_Alice
  • Pairings: Femshep/Thane
  • Synopsis: And here we have a series of scenes exploring different facets of a developing relationship between Femshep and Thane. It's not love at first sight for these two, and like any two people they have to work at understanding each other.
  • Comments: Despite Thane being specifically engineered by Bioware as Mr. Fanservice, there's surprisingly few truly decent Thane/Femshep fics out there. This is one of them. The author's style is eloquent, coherent, and she effortlessly keeps everyone in character whilst fully fleshing out one of the more rushed romances in the game. Lovely and thoroughly enjoyable, you won't want to stop reading!

Just a Soldier by Dinah Lance
  • Recommended by Spark Moon
  • Pairings: Female Shepard/Jacob Taylor
  • Synopsis: From the summary After Shepard is poisoned on Omega, Jacob volunteers to lure out Morinth. Pretty much exactly what it says on the tin, with a Female Shepard, natch.
  • Comments: Jacob Taylor has been the oft-maligned punching bag of the fandom for a multitude of reasons, a majority of which are undeserved in this troper's opinion. Dinah Lance, thankfully, has taken Jacob and made him more than a cheap joke factory and turned him into a competent, strong character and the hints of romance between the characters isn't forced. As one of the few and proud Jacob fans out there, I strongly reccomend this one.

Our Love Is Problematic by Finn Solomon
  • Recommended by Dutch Warlord, Sithking Zero
  • Pairings: Male Shepard/Subject Zero
  • Synopsis: From the opening Chapter "A Mass Effect 2 fic detailing the growing relationship between Commander John Shepard and the mysterious, violent biotic known only as Jack." Exactly what it says, starts from Purgatory and continues onwards. Ongoing.
  • Comments: Theres more Shepard/Tali romance fics than anyone can shake a stick at, and this happens not only to put Jack in a prominent role but happens to be well written. It covers as mentioned from the Purgatory Mission to Suicide Run and goes past. Rather humorous, especially since Shepard isnt played as a stereotypical Do-Good Hero Jesus type, but a person with flaws. Strongly Recommended.
    • If for no other reason, the scene between Shepard and Morinth is terrifying and amazing in its own right. I love the story, but that has to be one of my favorite parts.

Geth Infiltrator by DiChromate
  • Recommended by Meat Wisdom
  • Pairings: Tali/Legion
  • Synopsis: In preparation for the Suicide Mission, Shepard calls on Tali and Legion to accompany him on a mission, in order to get the two to get along both on and off of the battlefield. Tali learns that there is more to Legion than your average Geth, and is more than surprised when she starts developing feelings for it.
  • Comments: This story is quite entertaining, managing to seamlessly meld both action and romance. The author even showcases several gameplay elements, such as ammo/weapon switching, Suicide Mission mechanics (the second half of the story takes place during it and gives it a new angle), and having Legion do things that only a synthetic could. Tali's relationship with Legion is also well done, going from barely hiding her contempt for it to falling in love. Don't worry, the story addresses how that would even be possible (namely the fact that Tali can rarely leave her suit and Legion being a robot and all).
    • Night: Entertaining, and it captures Legion's mannerisms both vocal and physical very well. Tali is also quite convincing in both action and thoughts. (Even Shepard, Gabby, and Ken talk and act like themselves, which considering the number of Shepards In Name Only is pretty impressive.) Where the story falls down is in portraying Legion's own thoughts. This is entirely forgivable, I think, because a human author is always going to have trouble describing how a collective machine consciousness thinks.
    • Iaculus: I'm afraid the speed at which Tali's feelings for Legion developed kind of snapped my Willing Suspension of Disbelief. There should have been a bit more of an intermediary stage between 'mutual tolerance' and 'wants to get into the walking death-machine's metaphorical pants', in my opinion. If it hadn't been for that, though, I think I might have rather enjoyed it.

Tiger By My Side by Introjection
  • Recommended by Cass
  • Pairing: Joker/Shepard
  • Synopsis: Commander Shepard isn't one to be confused. However, after the events on the remote colony of Horizon, she has no choice but to accept the things she does not want to face, and have the courage to start life anew.
  • Comments: I was a little wary of this one going in, since from the first chapter it seems like the story is going to contain pointless Jacob-bashing for the sake of the pairing and like it might rush the relationship. But I kept going and was so glad that I did because instead I got a great, natural, build-up with all the snark you'd want in a Joker-centric fic, and even Shep's unease with Jacob turns out to have actual character-based reasons. It also stands out among many long-fics I've read set during ME2 for not spending a lot of time regurgitating conversations and scene-by-scene descriptions of situations we already saw in the game, filling in the spaces between cutscenes instead. And even when it delves into missions that we've all played through Introjection isn't afraid to make (minor) changes to keep things fresh.

Mass Mayhem by Universitas
  • Recommended by Spark Moon
  • Pairing(s): M!Shepard/Joker (ergo, slash)
  • Synopsis: Quoted from the summary itself: 100 drabbles in 20 weeks exploring Victor Shepard and his crew. Spans the first game and is now entering into Mass Effect 2
  • Comments: Drabbles themselves can be hit or miss, what with having to cram part of a story into 100-500 words or less. This anthology does it with flying colors, hitting on key parts of the characters' personalities in such a small space. (This troper's personal favorites are #'s 72 and 90) YMMV on the slash component, but even this troper-who dislikes Joker-admits the writer does a very good job of writing the sarcastic helmsman, keeping him very much in character while writing a relationship with a male Shepard. Speaking of Shepard, the one in this story is one of the more interesting takes on the male version of the player character.
    • There is now a non-drabble-based sequel, Chessboard, focusing on Victor Shepard's Mysterious Past told in flashback at the beginning of each chapter (sometimes with its own cliffhanger) and the crew's attempts to find him when he goes missing because of it.
    • Now has its own article.

Clearly A Mistake by Metal Dragon Kiryu
  • Recommended by Ethan Miller, Spark Moon
  • Pairings: Jack/Miranda, Female Shepard/Liara, Kelly > Shepard.
  • Synopsis: Set during the second game, the story focuses on the relationship between Miranda and Jack. It contains f/f sex, albeit not explicit, and a moderate amount of swearing.
  • Comments: It's a well written story that takes itself seriously. The characters are in character, the pairing is well developed. This editor thinks it's an interesting story.
    • An interesting story, to say the least. Unlike most Jack/Miranda fics that throw them together to cheaply titillate readers, this one takes a more mature approach to it. Worth the time to read and some of the follow-ups to this are quite fun too, in this troper's opinion.

Something That'll Last by Popehippo
  • Recommended by Spark Moon, Salty Wound, Ultrayellow, Sithking Zero, Bustamouse, St Clair
  • Pairings: Background characters, specifically a salarian and an asari.
  • Synopsis: From the summary A small glimpse into the life of those outside of Commander Shepard's story; based on the interactions of two NPCs in Illium. That is to say, the unnamed Salarian and his Asari step-daughter you overhear on Illium.
  • Comments: This short, but extremely beautiful one-shot takes a glimpse not at Shepard or any of his/her crew, but two one-off characters you pass by on one of the main worlds of the sequel: a Salarian searching for a gift for his significant other with his Asari step-daughter. To say any more than that would be a spoiler, but I will leave you with this: have at least one tissue handy, because if you have a heart, you'll be misty-eyed at the end.
    • *Sniff*...those two characters always got me when I passed by them in the game. Having now read this, I may never be able to walk by them again without crying my eyes out.
    • This is excellent. Understated, simple, but absolutely beautiful. It's nice to see someone who writes such great stories about characters who don't get any interactions with Shepard at all.
    • Nthing. Very well-written one-shot.
    • It takes a lot to get me to cry, but I did feel a little bit of tightness in my chest and some prickling in my eyes when I read this. For a character who has maybe ten lines total, and you probably never hear all of them unless you're staying to listen, this is a very powerful story.
    • All the Manly Tears.

Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained by ghost.713
  • Recommended by Salty Wound
  • Pairings: Kolyat/Oriana
  • Synopsis: Guardian angels have never been perfect creatures, but a one-time hitman might be stretching things. After his assassination attempt is foiled, Kolyat Krios begins working for Captain Bailey on Zakera Ward, reluctantly and irritably attempting to repent for his crime. At the same time, Oriana Solheim, now attending multiple schools on the Citadel, moves into the apartment next door to Koylat. An incredibly awkward, yet terribly cute relationship inevitably forms.
  • Comments: On first glance, this may sound like a desperate attempt to pair up two side-characters for the hell of it. The two characters are brought together realistically and their interactions feel genuine. Also happens to feature some of the best Captain Bailey writing I've ever seen. You can easily hear Michael Hogan delivering the lines.
    • Seconded once again by Pyrotorch246. It's a fun read that shows that life goes on while Shepard is out saving the galaxy. The writing and characterizations are excellent, as is the plot.
    • Yep, great read that fleshes out the wides universe and characters very well.

Supernova by Echo Alexia
  • Recommended by Ghastdream
  • Synopsis: Nihlus meets Femshep prior to boarding the Normandy. They duke it out with lots of mercs.
  • Pairing: Nihlus/Shepard
  • Comments: A brilliant action packed romantic comedy, despite the canonical tragic ending.

Learning Experiences by inthefadeforever
  • Recommended by Ghastdream
  • Synopsis: AU with no reapers, Shepard as a Spectre candidate and Saren as her instructor.
  • Pairing: Saren/Shepard
  • Comments: Best completed fanfic of this pairing I can find, excellent plot and character development.

GT Snap Shots and GT Snap Shots: Reboot by LockDown
  • Recommended by Firebert
  • Pairing: Garrus/Tali
  • Synopsis: A series of one-shots about the Garrus and Tali pairing.
  • Comments: Very nice fanfics of this pairing, with correctly guessed examples of events in Mass Effect 2 in the first fic. It features great character development, as well.

A Thessian's Whisper by PMC65
  • Recommended by Shakduhn, Bustamouse
  • Pairing: Liara/Female Shepard
  • Synopsis: The separate lives of E.W. Shepard (Elizabeth Whisper Shepard) and Liara T'Soni: Starting in 2164 when Shepard is 10 and Liara is 87 the story reveals how they grow up to become the individuals that meet on Therum. Their families, friends, lovers and life experiences.
  • Comments: One of the finest works of fiction I've ever read. Unlike most romance fics, this one focuses on the personal lives of Shepard and L Iara BEFORE they ever met. Each chapter takes turns narrating a segment on Shepard's life, followed by Liara's and so on. What makes this fic stand from so many others, is how much the authoress goes into detail. Ample background is given for Shepard's family, and friends, as well as Liara's family and friends. Each and every single one of the characters, from Shepard's dad, to Shep's mom, to her friends, to her grandparents, is a multi-layered well developed well focused personality. It focuses on the "Colonial" background of shepard (Lived on Mindoir, till it was attacked when she was 16). It has a healthy dose of humor, drama, well written dialog, a small dose of pop culture references, and plenty of shot-outs to future events that end up happening in the first game, it does a great job in fleshing out characters that don't get so much limelight on the actual game (Like Benezia, or Shiala). This fanfic is complete, starts from when Shepard was 10, and ends just before she is selected as Nhilus's disciple as the first human spectre. It has a sequel in the form of The Shepherdess and the Questing Beast which covers the events depicted in the first game, and its currently a work in progress. Most definitely a MUST-READ for any fem!shep fan out there.
    • Its of particular note how much detail goes into Asari Culture in general, with well defined, well researched exposure to their customs, rituals, culture, and more. So if you also happen to be an Asari fan, this is the one fic you CANT afford to miss.
    • Extremely well written and really had me through almost the entire story. But nearing the end and nearly unbearable in the sequel is how EVERYONE wants a piece of Shepherd, although YMMV. You can't go two sentences without someone talking about how incredible Shepherd is and how badly they want her. That comment aside this fic is VERY good with believable characters that you really fall in love with, and yes plenty of goodies for all the Asari fans out there.
    • Though being fair, everyone wanting a piece of Shepard is kinda canon in the game itself. Not for nothing, in the list of tropes on the page dedicated for Shepard is "Memetic Sex God/Goddess" due to the overwhelming amount of people that seem to want a piece of Shep, be them gay, straight, male, female, human, or alien. I do have to admit the fic kinda takes it a little bit too far, but its not that much of a stretch from what can be observed in the game.

Gabby and Ken by JoeLaTurkey
  • Recommended: by chankljp
  • Pairings: Gabby/Ken, Shepard/Kelly
  • Synopsis: A story that take place during the events of Mass Effect 2, starting with Kelly and Kasumi getting into a wager to get everyone's favorite engineering duo into admitting their feeling for each other. Things get interesting as the Normandy crew got some shore leave on Illium, with large number of crew members trying to ship the two of them.
  • Comments: As of the writing of this recommendation, this is the only story on Gabby and Ken that is available on Fan Fiction.net. Everyone in the story fits their characterization in the game, with the trademark sarcastic humor from the duo and all other characters. Includes some minor shipping between Kelly and Shepard.

The Robot by punishandenslavesuckers
  • Recommended by: Jonn
  • Synopsis: "If the Geth have a soul then it is a strange one, but if the soul exists then so too do all the sorrows that comes with it."
  • Pairing(s): Tali/Legion

Escaping the Past by RetailAvenger85
  • Recommended by: Bbg1129
  • Synopsis: Lt Kaidan Alenko learns to let go of the things that haunt his past with the help of his odd new Commander. His overwhelming urge to protect everyone is derailed by a woman who can protect herself. The author's "headcanon", expanding on games.
  • Pairing(s): Fem!Shep/Kaidan
  • Comments: Basically goes through Mass Effect 1 from the point of view of Kaidan. Author does a great job inserting game dialog, and adding their own. Funny and adorable, The author really gets inside Kaidan's head, and fleshes out his character. Followed by ME2 sequel Repairing the Present and ME3 Creating the future (currently a WIP) The series is definitely worth a read. Takes a few chapters for the author to hit their stride, but settles in nicely.

Where Angels Fear to Tread (completed''). Sequel: Closer to Home (incompleted, maybe a Deadfic now) by WarlordFil.
  • Recommended by Maymei
  • Synopsis: Death changes things. When Commander Shepard tries to tell her old friend what he means to her, she finds out that her own thoughts about him have changed. ME1 and 2 spoilers.
  • Pairing(s): Fem!Shep/Garrus
  • Comments: The first fic shows what happened off-scene during ME2 to explain why Shepard suddenly asked Garrus to ‘blow off steam’ with her and why Garrus agreed (as in the author’s words “ how Shepard went from "my buddy Garrus" in ME1 to "want to ease some tension?" in ME2”). The second fic was written before ME3 so it didn't follow canon, this story let us see more about the Turian tradition and point of views including an exploration about Garrus’s background. Both are very well written with a healthy dose of sweetness and angst with the OCs are quite believable and interesting. Pity that the sequel stopped right at a cliffhanger.

Weightless by Raptor Assassin
  • Recommended by Maymei
  • Synopsis: A wise Krogan once said that the only stories worth telling are those of love, sex, and war. This has all three. A story of provocateurs, confidants, and unhealthy attraction. Mass Effect Noir. Rated MA. Original content and a touch of AU pre & post ME1-ME3 concerning the secrets, origins, and lives of Jane Shepard and Garrus Vakarian.
  • Pairing(s): Fem!Shep/Garrus
  • Comments: This Noir-fic focusing mainly on Shepard and Garrus relationship with each other while gradually uncovering Shepard's past and her relation to Kai Leng and Nihlus. The writing may turns some people off with its purple prose and metaphors, but once you get past those things, it gives you many new insights for several characters. The author's ability to delivery moods and emotions is quite excellent and you can particularly feels the characters coming to life.

The Parting Glass by spicyshimmy
  • Recommended by Katseester
  • Synopsis: Post ME3 fic. Highly speculative. SPOILERS! In the aftermath of Shepard's choice, Steve Cortez and James Vega figure out what it means to be alive in London, Kaidan Alenko figures out what it means to be alive at all, and Garrus Vakarian figures out someone else might just be alive, too.
  • Pairings: James/Steve, M!Shep/Kaidan
  • Comments: Poignant and thoughtful, this fic ponders the effects Shepard's decision has on civilization from several points of view over the course of 18 chapters. Written before the release of the Extended Cut. Highly recommended. The rest of this author's works are definitely worth a look too.

The Translation in Blood by NothingTame (link)
  • Recommended by: StarSword
  • Synopsis: In the ruins of occupied Shanxi, an Alliance soldier and a Turian scout discover that they have more in common than is readily apparent. This leads to a story of a Secret Relationship across species (and government) boundaries and all that entails, stretching from the First Contact War to a little after the Destroy ending of Mass Effect 3, and resulting in Commander Shepard having a mentor and supporter she never knew about.
  • Pairings: Rear Admiral Hannah Shepardnote  and Councilor Sparatus (no, seriously), with FemShep/Garrus in the background of the later chapters.
  • Tags: Not Safe for Work due to M/F Explicit Content, Interspecies Romance, Completed
  • Comments: Radm. Shepard x Sparatus would seem to be a Crack Pairing at first glance, but not only does the author make it work, it also casts a completely different interpretation on Sparatus' actions in the trilogy. It also allows for an absolutely hilarious reaction from FemShep to the air-quotes thing.

"A Star to Steer Her By"
  • Recommended by: DealsWithFate3
  • After being revived by Cerberus, Shepard is not quite the stable commander that Joker remembers, and he's surprised to find himself helping her pick up the pieces. Follows ME2 with a focus on the interstitial non-mission bits.
  • Pairings: Fem!Shep/Joker
  • Comments: It's a nice slow build Joker/Shep romance, starting with ME2. He has survivor's guilt. She's dealing with a new body and allegiance. It's quite good. Friends to lovers thing, with focus on other characters, a very fleshed out Shep, etc.

Ghost Ghost I Know You Live Within Me By ''theherocomplex.
  • MassKink link. Archive of our own link.
  • Recommended by Maymei
  • Synopsis:: After Shepard dies over Alchera, Garrus goes to Omega to bury his grief. But when she comes back to him as a ghost, neither of them are sure of what's happening. All they know is that they have work to do.
  • Pairing: Fem!Shep/Garrus
  • Comments:: A rather unusual fic with supernatural elements that will hook you right at the start. Aside from our main characters, we also get to know and bond with the Archangels' squad, following their two years of story until the inevitable end happens.

Queen's Gambit Accepted by fahRENheit2006
  • Recommended by pistachioinfernal
  • Synopsis: Specialist Samantha Traynor, one of the Alliance's best and brightest, was relatively content working in Alliance R&D. But then... the Reapers came. Full of action, profanity, sarcasm, friendship, and gripping chess matches that will leave you breathless.
  • Pairing: Fem!Shep/Samantha Traynor
  • Comments:: There aren't a lot of fics exploring the Femshep/Traynor relationship, but even if there were, this one would stick out. Humour, pathos, conspiracy theories, chess games that are about flirting, and eavesdropping on diplomats is only scratching the surface. I really don't do it justice, check it out and see for yourself!

    Humor Fics 
Humor Fics
Crackfics, satires, or otherwise humorous stories.

Garfield Effect: Galaxy Adventure by ShakepeareHemmingway
  • Recommended by Psythe, Xysnei
  • Synopsis: Garfield leads Shepard and crew to save galaxy!
  • Comments: Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that I would see a Garfield/Mass Effect crossover, and never in those same dreams did I believe I would ever laugh so hard. This is very much in the tradition of Full Life Consequences, truly great badfic, and I cannot recommend it highly enough. If you've ever wanted to see Shepard get it on with every girl in the game as well as a Hanar, a Varren, and all of the Krogan females of Tuchanka at the same time, this is the fic for you. Every time I read it something new and amazing comes out of it. THESE ARE MY OLIVE BRANCHES.

A Trail a Mile Wide by Heuksal
  • Recommended by Anthurak, Doctor Worm, Joysweeper, pcy623, Maymei
  • Synopsis: After destroying the Collector base and saving the galaxy, the crew of the SR2 Normandy go on shore leave. Hilarity Ensues. Pretty much one giant reference to "Banned from Argo" by Leslie Fish & the Dehorn Crew — a song about spacers misbehaving so badly as to become Personae Non Gratae.
  • Comments: Basically, Shepard is nursing a colossal hangover while Garrus gives her a whole shopping list of the crazy shit she and her crew has done. A fun read.
    • Bioware take note: an interlude like this would be perfect for Mass Effect 3. It would be a great way to develop the characters and a nice breath of fresh air between drama-heavy missions.
    • Alynnidalar would like to second the recommendation for this one. It is hilarious!
      • Hilarious and in character to boot! The entire piece is so utterly hilarious that I almost didn't realize it, but if you consider both their personalities and the circumstances, everyone's behavior is completely believable! Seriously, someone get this to Bioware's attention pronto!

Threesome by Remenants
  • Recommended by Anthurak
  • Synopsis: FemShepard, Garrus and Tali get to know each other better. Not what it sounds like! Honest!
  • Comments: A fun little one-shot. Won't spoil anything, but quite funny. Any Garrus or Tali fan will enjoy.

Mass Effect: Records of an Irken Defective by KiwiDayDreams
  • Recommended by Kalaong and Navllyk
  • Synopsis: FemShepard is summoned back to Earth to investigate an... oddity. She ends up adding the saddest, most obnoxious alien invader in existence to her squad. Invader Zim.
  • Comments: Start reading and feel something inside your head snap and slide sideways. Jhonen Vasquez's insanity meets BioWare epicness. Even Legion's mind is blown. You get your first hint that not all is comedy when it is discovered that the Reapers turned the Irkens into the Citadel's Keepers. Then Zim is taken back to Irk only to find that the Reapers wiped out his species. Poor Zim.

Mass Effect: Grunt Sticks It In by Gregg Landsman
  • Recommended by Liangnui, USA Bobcat
  • Synopsis: Upon deciding that hanging herself out as the cyborg carrot on a stick for the Asari Sex Vampire was not a good idea, Commander Jane Shepard decides to use her varied team of specialists to set an actual trap. In theory.
  • Comments: Similar in tone to Landsman's major work, Nobody Dies, this fic is hilarity on par with anything in this category. Special moments include Tali's reaction to LSD, Thane playing tonsil hockey with Aria, and Grunt being the bait for Morinth. And that's not even close to the entirety of the fic's comedy.
    • Horngeek: The line that killed me was Morinth not coming out because the Illusive Man is chatting her up.

Joker's List by Made Nightwing
  • Recommended by Ghastdream
  • Synopsis: From the summary: The Command Team of the Normandy SR2 are sick of Joker's pranks. They make up a list of 182 things that Joker is no longer allowed to do. Based on Skippy's List, the life and times of a Special Forces Medic.
  • Comments: Perhaps not everything on the list are in character for Joker, but it's hilarious all the same. Additions to the list by commentors can be found in the comments section.
    • YMMV: If you've read Skippy's list, there's not much new to see here.
    • Agreed. If you like reading "Things Mr. Welsh is no longer allowed to do in RPG's," "The Supervillain Checklist," or or Skippy's list, you'll like it because of that. However, this really isn't in character with Joker, or any of the ME characters, really.

Infiltrait0r N7 by ranubis
  • Recommended by ultimatepheer, ace45ray, owlbot
  • Synopsis: We all know that Legion is deadly in combat. Rumors are he also is a gamer. Let's take a look at his interactions on the extranet...
  • Comments: Humorous, and the writer nailed the personality of both legion and the typical FPS player.
  • The best thing about this short fic is that it perfectly explains why Legion was able to overturn multiple infractions that it cheated, yet paradoxically accepts an infraction for taunting (for a machine, you'd think it would be the other way around) as according to its Shadow Broker file.
  • Of particular note is Infiltrait0rN7: Do you require assistance?

Cultural Differences by Mini Boss Majoring
  • Recommended by Sithking Zero, Gamerex27
  • Pairings: M!Shep/Tali, F!Shep/Garrus (story switches between the viewpoints of two different Shepards. Romance is NOT the point of this story.)
  • Synopsis: One-shots during ME1 and ME2. With several species on the Normandy, it was rather obvious that differences between them would be mistaken at times. Continuing.
  • Comments: a more humorous look at some of the ways that humanity and the other races differ. Case in point? The first chapter contains an account of Tali tackling Shepard because she thinks he's trying to commit suicide by slitting his throat with a sharp blade. He was shaving. It only gets funnier from there.
    • Gamerex27: I was considering adding this to the recs page until I saw someone else did it first. This is a hilarious story, and every chapter gives a few great jokes and hilarious moments. The characters are also IC to a fault: one could be forgiven for thinking that an actual Bioware employee wrote this.

Mess Perfect by Epantiras
  • Recommended by Borkless, Maymei
  • Synopsis: A brilliant parody comic of Mass Effect poking good natured fun at almost all aspects of the game.
  • Comments: Very funny, featuring a renegade FemShep who does actions most of us only wish were in the game.
    • Recommendation seconded by Alynnidalar. This fic is hilarious! Much of it is lampshading the more facepalmy moments of the two games, but there's also the hilarious characterization, humorous side stories (like Shepard's continual hitting on Jack, with painful consequences), and an exaggerated, stylized art style that is perfect for the light-hearted tone of the comic.

100 Things Commander Shepard's Crew Will Mutiny Over by The Mad Dragon
  • Recommended by decoy73
  • Synopsis: Shepard's crew, having had enough of some of her antics, has come together to compile a list of things she's no longer allowed to do.
  • Comments: Incredibly funny, in character, and forbidding all the things we have done, wish we could do, and then some. Also with shout-outs to other games and movies

Mass Effect 3 A Crucible in More Ways Than One by Sudentor
  • Recommended by Wild Goose, Tropulastic, USA Bobcat, Chris54325, GrantMK2, owlbot
  • Synopsis: Forget Commander Shepard and Admiral Anderson; being responsible for organizing the construction of a doomsday device with that many zany races and organizations, Admiral Steven Hackett is clearly the true, most long-suffering hero of Mass Effect 3.
  • Comments: A very crackfic take on the trials of Admiral Hackett as he supervises the construction of the Crucible, deals with being the Only Sane Man in a fleet of Crazy Awesome scientists (and just plain crazy) and tries to keep everyone focused on getting the job done. Highlights include challenging Kasumi to a Touhou duel to keep her from stealing Jacob from Bryn Cole.
    • Ahahahaha. I found this to be a very hilarious read. Definitely recommend it.
    • Utter nonstop hilarity. Good crackfics are hard enough to find. Good crackfics that still keeps the humor in touch with canon lore is a rarity amongst rarities. There's a reason this is the most recommended Mass Effect humor fanfic on TV Tropes.

Layin' Down the Law by "a dude"
  • Recommended by Mrtaco6
  • Synopsis: More Crucible trolling, lots of similarities to the fic above. It's a list of 100 things the crew working on the Crucible is not allowed to do.
  • Comments: A good fic, similar to other rulefics like 100 Things Commander Shepard's Crew will Mutiny Over and such. Lots of focus on geth trolling.

Fifty Shades of Blue by Raptor Assassin
  • Recommended by Maymei
  • Synopsis: Sordid tales of eroticism from the darkest corners of the galaxy, hot from the most degenerate pages of Fornax. It's pretty much Caligula, you guys. But with aliens. Hot aliens. That are hot. Rated MA for NSFW xenophilic blasphemies that will forever destroy your headcanon
  • Comments: Destroy your headcanon, indeed. Took this troper 1 week to look and Shiala or Garrus normally again. The way the author making fun of her own writing style (that she uses in her serious fic) does help, too.

     Crossover fics 

Archangel Ascendant by TheManWithaPlan
  • Recomended by FiftyShadesOfGrrrreat, Fiwen9430
  • Synopsis: They will hunt him. They will hate him. Above all, they will fear the Archangel.
  • Comments: Chronicles Garrus' time in Omega as Archangel, with a unique twist: Garrus as a literal Turian Batman, right down to the bone. Blends the characters of Mass Effect with the heroes and villains of the Batman mythos through a series of episodic arcs. Notable points of interest include Samara as Ra's Al Ghul and Mordin Solus as Scarecrow.
    • Fiwen9430:Has now started to deal with events and characters in ME2, including the Reapers, moving a little away from directly reworking Batman characters. The first few arcs feel very much like a retelling of Batman Begins, though with subtle hints about indoctrination and the Reapers, but by the end of the Mordin Solus arc the story has evolved past that to become a definite Mass Effect story. Definitely worth persevering through the earlier parts.

Stars Fade by totallybursar
  • Recomended by USA Bobcat
  • Synopsis: Shepard knows that destroying the Reapers will kill her. Except she's never been good at dying. The explosion of dark energy from the Crucible thrusts Shepard into a totally different universe. Post ME3 ending, DA2 Act 2 beginning. (FF.net Description)
  • Comments: A crossover with the Dragon Age series. Shepard just can't catch a break, though luckily her omni-tool still works. She's not happy with the slavery that mages endure, or the fact that she's attracted the interest of the Qunari. But more importantly, there are no toliets! It's a throughly engaging read that brings to life the realities of the Dragon Age series without losing any of the appeal.

The Mission Stays the Same by Ursakar
  • Recommended by USA Bobcat, MetalKing1417
  • Synopsis: Just after Shepard comes back from Project Overlord, days after regaining life, EDI detects a signal from the nearby planet Aite. When Shepard investigates, she finds a very confused Imperial Guard Stormtrooper and an Eldar Farseer.
  • Comments: I found this a quite interesting crossover. Captain Gallardi (the Stormtrooper) incorporates Mass Effect technology in his gear, such as Mass Effect style armor, but also keeps his hotshot lasgun, which bypasses kinetic barriers. The technology issue gets taken care of quickly, but I found that everyone was in character, Gallardi having been part of an Inquisitor's retinue and thus slightly more easy with Xenos. He still refuses to allow Mordin to inspect his weapons or armor, though he eventually starts warming up, he has not yet lost his xenophobia entirely. Shepard is female, and follows most of the Fanon Fem Shep ways, but is very much a character, not an insert or a Mary Sue. Maeteris (the Farseer) has not joined the team on a ground mission yet, and focuses more on seeing the future, though in typical Eldar fashion, will hint and nudge Shepard, but never tell her outright.

The Last Spartan by Dino Jake
  • Recommended by Gamerex27, Crow T R0bot
  • Synopsis: An AU fic in which the Halo and ME universes share the same galaxy. After a well deserved rest in Cryo-Sleep, Master Chief finally awakens...to a whole new galaxy.
  • Comments: This may very well be the only well-written Halo and Mass Effect crossover this Troper has ever read. Everyone is in character, the alien races of Halo do a very nice job of changing up many different events in the game (all for the better), and the few OC'S in it (which are not introduced until chapter 10) are very realistic and engaging characters.
    • Now has its own page.

Hammerhand by Colonel Mustard
  • Recommended by: hodaza
  • Synopsis: A cross over with Warhammer 40,000: While on their way to battle the Greenskins, Captain Malleus of the Sons of Thunder and his command squad are hit by a shock attack gun and blasted all the way back to the early 3rd millenium. Shepard is dead, human colonies are disapearing and its time for the Astartes to do what the Astartes were made to do. Long, well written and finished.
    • The sequel, Angels Of The Storm, is also finished.
    • TheArmada: Written with incredible skill and displaying mastery of action stories. Not only does it provide and epic, Epic, EPIC closure to the ME universe that some fans have missed in 3, but it does so in a way that feels like a natural evolution of both the canon characters and the universe itself. Angels of the Storm is slightly different from canon due to having been written before ME3 came out, but I can't complain, I found this better than canon. Best work of literature I have ever read, fan-made or published.

Renegade by Peptuck
  • Recommended by corin, USA Bobcat, Deep Recon
  • Synopsis: A Mass Effect/Command & Conquer Crossover/Alternate Universe fic that replaces the Mass Effect Earth with Tiberium Earth, with GDI taking over the role of the Systems Alliance, that follows the plot of the original game. Female Colonist Sole Survivor/War Hero Shepard who appears to be a combination Vanguard/Adept. Not yet clear whether she's Paragon or Renegade.
  • Comments: Inspired by a discussion on Spacebattles.com.(Spacebattles story thread here.) Essentially serves as a novelization of the game that explores how different everything would be if GDI replaced the Alliance, and how their technology and Tiberium would dramatically influence politics, i.e. Nod intervenes in the slaver attack on Elysium, GDI goes to war with the Batarian Hegemony, the Scrin were behind Akuze and Eden Prime, etc. The story is still relatively new, however, so there's no idea when it will be updated.
    • My favorite fanfic of all time. And even if you don't know Command & Conquer, I have three words for you: Spectre Garrus Vakarian.
    • Definitely seconded. This isn't Mass Effect with GDI in place of the Alliance, it is a true mixture. Basic example: With the aggressiveness of GDI Foreign Policy, the Council expands the number of Spectres, leading to Spectre Garrus Vakarian, who the Author himself described as "Turian Jack Bauer meets the Kool-Aid Man."
    • Good fics are already hard to find, that much is well-documented. Good crossover fics is a contest of finding a minority group within a minority group, but Renegade is one of those wonderful few. There is a minor change in tone for readers going from chapter one to seven in one sitting (as this troper did), from rather dark 'n gritty to downright funny, but when the comedy is genuinely entertaining (good comedy fics being another minority among minorities), it's more than excusable. Well-worth the read. —Deep Recon

Eagles Fall by CharNobyl
  • Recommended by Zaptech, USA Bobcat
  • Synopsis: Established in the same setting as Renegade, this story covers the First Contact War between GDI and the Turian Hierarchy - specifically, the bloody ground war that resulted in the alternate timeline of that story.
  • Comments: A well-written, gritty, and realistic depiction of how a war between GDI and the Hierarchy would have played out. Indications of a Gambit Pileup are starting to show as both the asari and Brotherhood of Nod agents have begun to appear.
    • USA Bobcat: Now completed, this is a great read. Even if you don't believe mean, believe Peptuck himself! Peptuck has declared that he considers this to be the canon (well, fanon) prequel to Renegade, and Char-Nobyl is working alongside Peptuck on Renegade, including incorporating elements from Eagle's Fall. Fans of this story, rejoice! Specialist Locke lives! And is confirmed to being appearing in Renegade!

When There Was A Tomorrow by General Rage
  • Recommended by Lord Gale, Crow T R0bot, USA Bobcat
  • Synopsis: Halo/Mass Effect. Takes place Post-ME2 and Shadow Broker DLC. Noticing an anomoly out in the far reaches of space, Shepard takes the Normandy crew in to investigate. "Just Recon," is all. Until they find a wormhole that reads similarly to Reapers, with Covenant ships pouring out of it. The Author ships Shepard/Tali.
  • comments: Despite many a spelling error, this is amazingly well written. The characters are all faithful to the source material, both the Mass Effect AND Halo characters. This story is better appreciated if you've read the Halo Novels, but even if you haven't it's highly reccomended. The firefights are exciting, the drama intense, and the humor well written. The story updates slowly, due to the sheer SIZE of the chapters- at LEAST 20k per chap, if not MORE.
    • Now has its own page.
    • Eh... YMMV. The blatant exposition, and the fact that Shepard suddenly speaks like a native of the southern United States might put people off. It is quite grating whenever I read Shepard asking if "He can help ya out."

Records of an Irken Defective by KiwiDayDreams
  • Recommended by Lord Gale
  • synopsis: Mass Effect/Invader Zim. A post-ME2 fic, in which (fem)Shepard is called to Earth to investigate a mysterious death in an old abandoned house, only to confront some sort of deranged, psychotic robot. The fight escalates, and they stumble upon a stasis pod containing a certain green Invader, asleep since the year 2025...
  • comments: This story begins as comedy, with a bit of ingenious series-mixing here and there, and great characterization typical of good Mass Effect Fanfiction until we arrive at the fate of the rest of IRK. This fic is not the bright and happy crossover this troper expected in the slightest, but then again, given the source material... Regardless of how horrifying it was for this troper, this is a very intriguing and well written fic, and if you have the stomach to watch Tali nearly drown, then by all means, read it.

In the Shadow of Gods by Anne Whyne
  • Recommended by FarmerKyle
  • Synopsis: "They stand apart from humans as heroes, saviors, and gods among men. But when we stand in the shadows of gods, we fail to see the cost to them. Sometimes the only one that can understand the weight of the universe is someone else who bears it." A Halo/Mass Effect crossover.
  • Comments: One of the better crossovers of its kind, and a great fanfic all around. Shepard here is Paragon, with dashes of Renegade to keep things interesting. Also doesn't speed up the trust issue between John and the rest of the team, especially after Cortana tries to hack EDI. Great characterizations all around, the fights are well done, and overall a great story!
    • Abandoned, as of now. The author has issues with some of the stuff that goes on over at ff.net. Her full explanation can be found here. It's a damn shame from where I'm standing.
    • Deleted from FF.net by Critics United. Don't use older links.
      • First chapter of re-write now posted at relevant link here. Hallelujah.

Ghost Story by Nuts!/Norwest
  • Recommended by Gentlemens Dame 883
  • Synopsis: The Dresden Files crossover, spoilers for the end of Changes and start of the eponymous canonical book. Harry Dresden is dead, and so is John Shepard circa Bring Down the Sky. Orders on high come in to send them back to the land of the living... The other guy's land of the living.
  •   add review 
  • The Babylon Effect by Andrew James Williams
    • Recomended by kilroy11235
    • Synopsis: A pre-ME1 crossover with Babylon 5; The Terran Systems Alliance, a member of Citadel Space, encounter the Minbari and accidently kill their leader. The resulting war goes a little differently.
    • Comments: Mass Effect already had a Babylon 5 feel to it, and this blends them together quite well, giving a plausible reason why the races from both stories never originally encountered each other.

    Exodus of Stars by keiranhalcyon2010
    • Recommended by MetalKing1417
    • Synopsis: BattleTech crossover. Aleksandr Kerensky has led the war weary Star League Defense Force on a two year long journey into exile. A chance decision leads to a long awaited discovery, and final proof that humanity is not alone in the cosmos.
    • Comments: There are several interesting changes to the canon that make this interesting, even for a Fusion Fic/AU, one of the most notable being Humanity making a peaceful first contact with the Quarians, as opposed to the usual canon and violent first contact with the Turians. All together a good read.
    • Now has a page (under construction).

    Drift by Peptuck
    • Recommended by Zaptech, USA Bobcat
    • Synopsis: Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles crossover taking place over the events of Mass Effect 2. Shepard receives an update to his team dossiers: a scientist specializing in artificial intelligence named Allison Young. When he goes to recruit her, however, he quickly discovers that she is far more than she lets on.
    • Comments: What makes this story effective is the characterization of Cameron/Allison; she's presented as two semi-separate entities in one body, and has a curious duality between the cold, logical machine that is Cameron and the much more human construct that is Allison. While the action sequences are solid, the real draw is Cameron/Allison's interactions with Shepard and the larger Mass Effect setting, and how she's had to adapt over the centuries to a galaxy that distrusts AI. There are some hints of Cameron/Shepard.

    Mass Effect 2: Naruto's Mission by I.K.A. Valian
    • Recommended by autopanda
    • Synopsis:''Naruto wakes ten years in the future with no memory of what happened to get him there. Following the only clue he can find, he embarks on a mission to find and bring home Sasuke and Sakura who are lost in a galaxy threatened by Reapers.
    • Comments: At first, it may SEEM like a sequel fic, but the author does not have any other Mass effect/Naruto fics. It's actually pretty good, if a little bit shocking due to the fact that Naruto was indoctrinated and apparently turned into an asshole.

    Harbinger by Peptuck
    • Recommended by Wild Goose
    • Synopsis: A rampage by an insane psychic on an Alliance colony draws the attention of Commander Shepard, Citadel Spectre and former FEAR point man. Events are set in motion that may mean the death of a galaxy, or salvation from the Reapers. ME/FEAR fusion. M!Shepard/Ashley.
    • Comments: Shepherd is the Pointman.

    Blood and Fire by Tavi
    • Recommended by Gentlemens Dame 883
    • Synopsis: The Citadel races have long been at war with the theocratic empire known as the Covenant. Decades ago they came to the rescue of the newcomer known as "humanity" when the Covenant took a hostile interest. Today, Covenant forces attack the human colony of Eden Prime... Halo/Mass Effect, takes the Fusion Fic path rather than a straight crossover.

    Protoculture Effect by Cyclone
    • Recommended By SAMAS, GrantMK2
    • Synopsis: Another in the "Systems Alliance is replaced by Sci-Fi series X" class of fanfics, this time it's Robotech. The Sentinel Alliance is an entire rival bloc to the Citadel, with tensions running high after the aborted wars against the Turians and Batarians. Join controversial Human Spectre John Shepard and Lt. Commander Jane Hunter as they hunt down the rogue Spectre Saren.
      • It does a fairly good job of properly melding two very different franchises, gives different characters time to shine and manages to avoid letting mechs solve everything.
    • Author's Comment: Nice to see my story here, but don't forget to check out the Codex, which includes some entries not found attached to the main story.

    Consuming Direct Control by Hyliian
    • Recommended By MetalKing1417, USA Bobcat
    • Synopsis: With nothing left for him in the galaxy but empty space and idle time, Alex Mercer finds himself recruited in Commander Shepard's fight against the Collectors. Crossover with Prototype.
    • Comments: A rather humorous fic if I ever saw one. Mercer's hyjinks driving Shepard bonkers is too much for anyone to resist. The only real flaw, as admitted by the author is the slight bit of over focusing on Alex, though it is almost always bearable.

    Glorious Shotgun Princess by Gregg Landsman
    • Recommended By Fenix, Gamerex27, Andyroid, Peteman
    • Synopsis: The Exaltation of the Unconquered Sun is a tricky thing. Especially when it doesn't come with an manual. Jane Shepard, who was able to talk Spectres into suicide before getting a spiritual superweapon grafted to her soul, has a new advantage. Crossover with Exalted.
    • Comments: It's written by the same author who wrote Nobody Dies. Notable moments include Shepard literally punching the Kepral's Syndrome out of Thane.

    Mass Effect Human Revolution by IgnusDei
    • Recommended By Kalaong, Gone Rampant, Zaptech, Poptard, PNG, Minty Fresh Death
    • Synopsis: The empty years between the present day and the discovery of the Prothean Ruins on Mars are filled in with the three Deus Ex games... and end with anti-aug fanatics in control. Humanity is a bioconservative shadow of its canon glory. But fear not, Honest Corporate Executive David Sarif saw it all coming, and preserved his technology, researchers, himself, and Adam Jensen as Human Popsicles. Unfortunately, after more than a century on ice, only Adam made it to the 2170's - and barely makes it off Earth ahead of the torch-waving Muggles. But even off-world, Adam just can't stay out of trouble he never asked for. His first attempt to put down roots is on Elysium, and only his (suppressed!) rescue of the colony from batarian raiders enables him to leave the planet intact. He seems to find a home on the Citadel itself, distinguishing himself as Garrus Vakarian's partner in C-Sec. Only Commander Shepard, fresh from the attack on Eden Prime, gets herself assassinated hours after she sets foot on the Citadel. Adam Jensen never asked for this, but someone has to stop Saren - and he's better equipped than anyone else in the galaxy to do it.
    • Comments: Conspiracies, cyborgs and snark hit the Mass Effect universe hard enough to knock out a charging krogan. The author is a transhumanist who was disappointed with Mass Effect 3's endings, and has chosen this combination of extropian promise and old-fashioned Bad Ass to set it right. Prepare for asari terrorists taken out with thrown fridges, naive sentinels driven to distraction with CASIE mods, and krogan sucker-punched by inert ultra-tensile carbon fists. Be warned that it takes a while to get into gear, though, so try to stick with it at least four chapters. Also, IgnusDei was personally involved with the development of DX:HR - at least to the point of having designed several set pieces.

    Mass Effect New Origins V2 by erttheking
    • Recomended by drsdino
    • Synopsis: On the dawn of the 27th century, the UNSC discovers a Mass Relay, and unlock its power. What follows not only includes making contact with new species and making new friends, but making new enemies as well, and the entire galaxy will shake.
    • Comments: An interesting fan fiction, has some typos and very long Author Notes that boil down to either swear ridden ranting, or odd tangents that descend into babbling. But it has interesting characters, character development. And best of all?... NO STAR CHILD HURRAY!
      • Sithking Zero: Ertheking is a good author... but his stories can get slightly predictable at times. He dislikes the Citadel for several reasons, and he hits them in pretty much each story: the Genophage, the Quarians, and AI's. The earth governments are superior to the citadel in terms of some form of tech, and have the moral high ground while the Citadel squirms. He has gotten better, and he can write very convincing characters. I would say to skip this one and go to one of his more recent projects, "From the Ashes," which is a Fallout/Mass Effect crossover.
      • Mickey Moose: Personally I don't find him to be a good author at all. Or rather, while he's got some talent as a writer, he fails as an author. A lot of the "story" he writes isn't a story at all, but is rather an extended timeline with vignettes interspersed in between timeline entries. All told, his work reads like the bastard child of an encyclopedia and a short-story-filled fiction magazine.

    Mass Effect: Clash of Civilizations by Eterna1Soldier
    • Recomended by Meta Skipper, MetalKing1417
    • Synopsis: In 2157 a Citadel Council exploratory vessel is tasked with opening a dormant Relay into unknown regions of the galaxy. What they find is something they never expected. What happens when two civilizations centered around different technologies clash?
    • Comments: This fic explores well the implications of two cultures meeting. The characters have stayed true, and the O Cs are well-fleshed out. The space battle scene is also written well, being more than one side has bigger guns, hence they win. Overall, a well-written fic, though the author's long update times are to be noted.
    • Now has its own trope page.

    From the Ashes by erttheking
    • Recomended by MetalKing1417
    • Synopsis: Even after seeing their world burned, Humanity was able to stand up again, and push beyond their pre-war status and reach the heavens. But how will a hardened Humanity handle life among the stars? And how will others react to this aggressive newcomer?
    • Comments: A crossover with the Fallout Series. The shepards gather a crew to hunt down the rouge Spectre agent Saren. Notable for killing off the Reapers before the story begins so the author could explore new plot lines.
      • Sithking Zero: My warning from before about Ertheking still applies, but he is in much better form here. I recommend this story.
      • Mickey Moose: Again, this is less a flowing story and more a timeline with intercut scenes. The man needs to learn how to put his background information into the story rather than presenting it as an all-at-once infodump.
    • Now has a trope page.

    Matrix Effect by unity9
    • Recomended by MetalKing1417
    • Synopsis: Imagine what if the Human/Machine war ended with a truce and humans merged with the machines only to find a Mass Relay many years later. Read as humans explore this relay and find out where this rabbit hole will take them.
    • It has its own tropes page, here

    Apostle's Message by Lone-ranger1
    • Recomended by EGuardian101
    • Synopsis: When the Reapers see the threat Shepard poses, they enact a backup plan millions of years old. A single Reaper will unleash his fury and two galaxies will never be the same. Stargate SG1/Mass Effect
    • Comments: The original wasn't anything special, but the redux fixes the majority of the issues and delivers. Does a good job mixing ME story with SG-1 Season 8, and characterizations are spot on and entertaining. Especially Garrus as a Badass Snarker. Takes place immediately after Horizon, and before New Order Part 1, and merges the two universes together. MShep as a Paragon who's turned Renegade. Has a healthy mix of drama, action/adventure, with a good dose of humor. Takes awhile to get into the main story, but well worth it.

    Avatar Of Victory by James Golen
    • Recommended by Tikigod784
    • Status: Ongoing
    • Fandoms: Avatar: The Last Airbender, Mass Effect
    • Synopsis: A blend of the Avatar and Mass Effect universes in that the Earth of A:TLA replaces our Earth. What this means for the universe besides Shepard being the Avatar is that Bending is a present and practiced phenomenon among all the races of the Citadel as well as the presence of spirits and certain other aspects of the Avatar universe. Interesting not just because of the crossover itself but because it shows an Avatar who is fundamentally broken and has spent most of her life (including parts of this story) making things worse for herself rather than the spiritual growth that we've seen the other Avatars go through. Fight scenes are excellent and detailed, with most enemies that Shepard faces being competent, and not just because some of them are better at bending then she is. Canon names being included in regard to humans actually does get explained so don't let that throw you off.

    XCOM Second Contact (FF.net link) (Thread on spacebattles) by Agayek
    • Recommended by Mikemerc, USA Bobcat, Unclouded TJ, Stormedge
    • Status: Extended Hiatus.
    • Fandoms: Mass Effect, XCOM: Enemy Unknown
    • Synopsis: With the destruction of the Temple Ship humanity knew peace. XCOM never forgot their motto however, 'always vigilant, always reliable'. Loosely follows the plot-line of the original game with new characters and relationships.
    • Comments: X-Com humanity replaces the Systems Alliance. The Galaxy will never be the same.

    Terran Ingenuity (FF.net link) by Xeno Major
    • Recommended by: SAMAS, GreatLimmick
    • Status: Ongoing
    • Fandoms: Mass Effect, Starcraft II
    • Synopsis: Sometime after the events of Wings of Liberty (and possibly Heart of the Swarm), James Raynor decides to quit the Korpulu Sector altogether, eventually settling down on Shanxi with whoever wants to come with him. When somebody discovers the huge relay in the system, you can guess what happens next. Everybody involved is in for some big surprises.

    The Quarian Princessbride by theblueninja
    • Recommended by: Full-Paragon
    • Synopsis: One day when the Catalyst is sick, The Illusive Man comes to read him a very special book.
    • Tags: Rated K, Humor/Parody
    • Fandoms: Mass Effect, The Princess Bride
    • Comments: Has the cast of Mass Effect in the role of the characters in Princess Bride, with a few twists on the plot to fit the new characters.

    Last Heresy by Gaius Marius
    • Recommended by: Batman76
    • Synopsis: The Galaxy burns in the fires of endless war.. The Citadel species arose in the vacuum left of the Age of Strife, conquering and colonizing worlds filled with the savage descendents of humanity. But now, humanity's nigh-immortal protector has returned as its Emperor. Against the might of the Citadel, His vast and terrible armies clash. At the head of Terra's armies are his 17 sons, the mighty and wondrous Primarchs and their legions of Astartes. In this galaxy, Night Haunter greets the Turians at first contact, Horus' legions push towards the Citadel, Magnus faces down the Asari on Illium, Leman Russ leads the Vylka Fenryka to destroy the Salarian homeworld and the Primarch Angron is sent to take the world of Eden Prime. Despite the machinations of the Citadel, the Emperor's great designs twist towards fruition, for the Reapers are coming and He has found a solution.
    • Fandoms: Mass Effect, Franchise/Warhammer40,000

    Screw This, I'm Firing the Halo Array
    • Recommended by Pantegral
    • Synopsis: It's the end of Mass Effect 3, and it sucks. Luckily, new universes come to the rescue! Complete and utter crack.
    • Commments: The first two chapters are just your typical silly crack fic. From the third chapter onwards, however, the story shifts into an incredible Crazy Awesome take on what would have happen if ships and people from a dozen different universes were dumped into the Battle of Earth's final stages. Probably the best ME mega-crossover I've read so far: the writing is actually good, and the story doesn't takes itself too seriously - the butchered riffing of the Arbiter's trial in Halo 2 has to be read to be believed.

    No Gods, Only Guns by Peptuck
    • Recommended by MetalKing1417, Zaptech, USA Bobcat, DigitalPatriot
    • Synopsis: Ancient artifacts of immense power. Murderous synthetics. Ruthless megacorps. Unscrupulous mercenaries. Genocidal stellar god-machines. Incompetent galactic governments. Claptrap dubstep. The horrors of the galaxy are many, but there's one thing a good, mentally-unstable fortune-seeking antihero can rely on: the gun at his, her, or its side. Mass Effect/Borderlands fusion.
    • Comments: First off: Udina with an eye-patch and cyberarm! On a more serious note, the story is another fusion by Peptuck that combines Borderlands' general batshit insanity and over-the-top humor with the interstellar political drama and impending apocalypse of Mass Effect, with Lilith replacing Shepard.
      • DigitalPatriot: Definitely gotta recommend this. The author manages to combine the characters and atmosphere of both Mass Effect and Borderlands 2 near perfectly, while changing events up enough for it to be a true fusion, rather than just another "retread of Mass Effect with someone else in Shepard's Place". Also, I will see your Udina and raise you Torgue Urdnot.
      • Now with its own tropes page!

    The Marker by Faust23
    • Recommended by GrantMK2
    • Synopsis: Lured away from her research on the protheans, young archaeologist Liara T'Soni joins an expedition to an unexplored part of space. There, a ruined world and a derelict ship hold secrets that may explain the cause of the prothean extinction or may be the harbinger of their own.
    • Comments: A well written crossover with Dead Space about Liara working with a team to investigate the mysterious USG Ishimura. Set before any official first contact with humanity, it gives a fresh view from nonhuman characters, avoids the usual cliches and even manages to make Saren competent if not likable.

    A Red Letter Day by open_sketchbook
    • Recommended by: Gary Gibbon
    • Synopsis: A crossover with the Paradox mod for Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3. It is the year 2183, and Humanity is still divided. Since the wholesale slaughter of the Turian Expeditionary Fleet at Shanxi by the highly-advanced forces of the Soviet Union and the Allied Federation of Planets, humankind has been attempting to repair the damage caused by the war. In a show of cooperation and trust, Commissar-Commander Shepherd and Lieutenant Alenko are sent with their teams in a joint mission, along with Spectre Garrus Vakarian, to investigate claims of an attack on the human colony of Eden Prime. What they find there sets in motion a chain of events that could spell the doom of every sapient species in the galaxy.
    • Comments: A crossover with the writer's already insane mod for Red Alert 3, and heavily inspired by the writings of Peptuck, this is crack fiction that takes itself very seriously. Shepherd as a commie? Time-travelling jet troopers with laser guns? Transorbital Normandy-sized tanks? Roman cyberpunk Turian mercenaries with 80s mohawks? This is Mass Effect crossed over with Red Alert and then turned all the way up to eleven. If you fancy something incredibly silly that manages to take itself very seriously, read it.

    The Illusive-Emperor by Nicolai Alvin Hubert
    • Recommended by: romancechina88
    • Synopsis: The first crossover between Mass Effect and Code Geass by three writers who have joined together to write this fic. Where in this universe Humanity has problems with the Turians and the batarians as well. But in the Shadows lies a figure known only as the Illusive man, who is making his move to protect humanity's place in the galaxy.
    • Fandoms: Mass Effect, Code Geass.
    • Tags: Rated M, Adventure/Sci-Fi
  •   add review 
  • Projects Magia and Lazarus by ffdrake
    • Reccomended by: Kalvan
    • Synopsis: Cerberus thought they had found the key to human evolution once they stumbled upon two unlikely people wandering the woods lost and confused. Now the Projects meant to better humanity, Magia and Lazarus, might just the key to bring an end to Cerberus, the Collectors, and the Reapers.
    • Fandoms: Mass Effect, Dragon Age
    • Pairings: M Hawke/Merrill, Male Shepard/Tali'Zorah, hints of one-sided Liara/Made Shepard and Ashley/Male Shepard
    • Status: Ongoing, last update November 30, 2013
    • Comments: Merrill's reactions to everything just have to be read to be believed. And her conversations with Tali crank both of their Adorkableness Up to Eleven.
    • Tags: Rated M, Sci-Fi/Romance
  •   add review 
  • Through dust and Ashes
    • Recommended by: Airemir
    • Synopsis: The world of the Shinobi is at an end, will the arrival of the first Human Spectre grant them salvation, or is it just the beginning of a new war?
    • Fandoms: Mass Effect, Anime/Naruto
    • Pairings: Naruto/Hinata, Hidan/Kurotsuchi
    • Status: On-going

    Hunters of Death
    • Recommended by: Infinite Freedom 01, Omeganian, Mikeal52
    • Synopsis: Decades after the sacrifice of Gipsy Danger, a hopeful mankind looked to the stars. With a army of Jaegers in tow. Now, decades later, the Normandy SR-1 is sent to Eden Prime, and The Shepard Twins, one raised on Earth, the other in space, prepare to show the universe what they're made of. Because sometimes, it takes monsters to kill monsters.
    • Fandoms: Mass Effect, Pacific Rim
    • Status: On-going
    • Comments: Though Jaeger battles don't happen too often (Mainly due to them being a bit unwieldy for the average Mass Effect fight) the influence of their existence is clear from the moment the teams hits the Citadel, mainly the ripple effect caused by a humanity using Jaegers. The story has more to do with Mass Effect with giant robots, but a fun show for fans of both the movie and the games. Now with flying Jaegers and biotic Kaiju!
    • Now has its own trope page.

    Shepard's R&R
    • Recommended by: Reterusu, Poptard
    • Synopsis: Commander Shepard awakens from his coma after surviving the near-destruction of the Catalyst. His extended sleep was all the rest he was getting, as the galaxy has discovered a mysterious new race of equines with mysterious powers. With the help of his old companions, Ambassador Shawn Shepard journeys to the planet Equus to make sure the Equestrian's welcoming to the galactic community goes as smoothly as possible... and secure the Serenity system's resources for the Council.
    • Fandoms: Mass Effect, My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic
    • Status: Sporadic updates.

    Supreme Commander: Mass Effect by Guardian54

    • Recommended by: Doomguy
    • Status: Complete. Many sequels - some complete, some sporadically updating.
    • Synopsis: In 3865, 18 years after the Seraphim War, The Coalition of Species meets the Turians. Basically a "Systems Alliance is replaced with X" crossover fic; in this case the four factions of the first Supreme Commander game make contact with the Citadel.
    • Tags: No smut before chapter 13 (recommend-er hasn't finished the fic yet, so there may be smut, Mass Effect being what it is), strong language, a lot of action violence but not really any gore.

    The Infinty Effect by creamofwheat2311
    • Recommended by Timothy Man
    • Crossover: Mass Effect /Halo
    • Synopsis:After discovering a Precursor artifact, the UNSC Infinity and the Sangheili Shadow of Intent are transported to a universe unlike anything they have ever seen, and forced into a war against a foe they never could have imagined: the Reapers. Alliances are founded, friendships are formed, and decisions are made that will change this galaxy forever. Post Halo 4, Pre ME 3. AU.
    • Comments: I'm very new here so I'm sorry if my inexperience shines blindingly through, so a slightly more in depth synopsis is the Infinity and Shadow of Intent are transported to Mass Effect's Sol System just before the Reapers arrive. Overall I would give this an enthusiastic recommendation. First contact was done well, the space and land battles are fun, and the characters seem well written for the most part. Some things that bother me a bit is that Halo tech is buffed even more but it is at least somewhat balanced by being seriously outnumbered, and people are alive that at the moment is kinda hand waived how they survived. While this story is my favorite, I hope someone can give it a more detailed critical analysis.

    Mythos Effect by ''Omniscent1
    • Recommended by Drgyen
    • Crossover: Mass Effect / Cthulhu Tech
    • Synopsis: Humanity has won the Aeon War and has since expanded and thrived. How will the galaxy fare with this new power?

    Psi-Effect by Capn Chryssalid
    • Recommended by Mangod
    • Crossover: Mass Effect /XCOM: Enemy Unknown.
    • Synopsis:A fun-loving asari mercenary finds herself a little in over her head when she ends up abducted by terrifying aliens from beyond the galactic frontier. These asari-like creatures call themselves 'humans.' They seem to be secretly nosing about on the borders of known space, acting through proxies, conducting covert operations, and they've got a deal for an enterprising asari...
    • Comments: A funny story about how OC Ilena Thanoptis, an Asari mercenary, gets dragged into being the public face of Eclipse, which is in reality a XCOM Black-Ops front for destabilizing the Batarian Hegemony and collecting information on the rest of the Citadel Races. The story is only six chapters long at time of Writing, but so far the story has managed to both be very funny (Ilena being a stereotypical vapid Asari maiden) and have some rather great action beats (Annabel Shepard's fight against Urdnot Wrex).


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