Literature: Mass Effect: Revelation

Mass Effect: Revelation is a novel within the Mass Effect universe.

It serves as a prequel to the first game, telling the story of how Capt. Anderson tried and failed to become a Spectre, and how Saren found Sovereign.

Mass Effect: Revelation provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Anti-Hero / Anti-Villain / Villain Protagonist: Saren.
  • Armor-Piercing Question: The asari councilor asks one of Goyle, when she asks her whether humanity has ever put the interests of the galaxy above its own interests as a species.
  • Badass Normal: In a universe with dinosaur-like aliens with extremely fast regenerative capabilities and people who can manipulate gravity with their minds, Anderson manages to kill Skarr, a member of said aliens AND able to manipulate gravity with his mind, with little more than a pistol. By himself.
  • Call Forward: The retired Admiral Grissom (not fond of visitors) goes to answer his door and wonders who it might be. "If it was a reporter, he'd punch him — or her — right in the mouth."
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Though Saren's torture of Groto was for information, Saren also stopped him from torturing a human prostitute and was disgusted by Groto's intentions. This trope is in play because Saren despises humans.
  • Eye Scream: Groto Ib-ba, a mercenary member of the batarians, a species whose members each have four eyes, gets one of them burst — not removed, burst — by his torturer during interrogation. This particular instance is also one of Pay Evil unto Evil, as the victim in question was also hateful of humans and had planned to "break" a human prostitute as a means of "stress relief". The novel says Groto even went out of his way to try and pick the weakest prostitute to make it more likely he'd break her.
  • First Contact: The book begins just after this happens.
  • Foreshadowing: Ambassador Goyle suggests that there could already be an advanced AI out there somewhere in the galaxy (besides the geth).
  • Framing Device: Set up the Mass Effect universe, since the game was unreleased during its publication.
  • Freudian Excuse: Apparently Saren's hatred of humanity was caused by his brother's death during the First Contact War. Of course, that does nothing to defend Saren's brutal treatment of every other species that gets in his way.
  • Humanoid Aliens: Early on, the book lampshades their commonness in the franchise. Anderson subscribes to the most common explanation, that there's some undiscovered evolutionary advantage to the humanoid body structure.
  • Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique / Cold-Blooded Torture: Depending on whether you view Saren as an Anti-Hero or Villain Protagonist.
  • Mythology Gag / Self-Deprecation: There's a line somewhere about a lengthy elevator ride.
  • Prequel
  • Rule Number One:
    "I have two rules I follow," Saren explained. "The first is: never kill someone without a reason."
    "And the second?" Anderson asked, suspicious.
    "You can always find a reason to kill someone."
  • Start of Darkness: For Saren, though the story shows that he was a huge racist and Knight Templar even before he turned bad.
  • Token Romance: Anderson and Kahlee Sanders, though it does not actually go anywhere.
  • Vasquez Always Dies: Subverted; Dah is 6' 3", stated to be stronger then most of the men in her squad and with an attitude that's kept her from advancing in her career. She gets ambushed and badly hurt, but ends up recovering to full health.