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Characters / Mass Effect 2 Early Party Members

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Main Character Index | Commander Shepard | Party 1 Members | Kaidan Alenko | Ashley Williams | Garrus Vakarian | Liara T'Soni | Tali'Zorah | Urdnot Wrex | Mass Effect 1 Antagonists | Mass Effect 1 NPCs | Early Party 2 Members | Late Party 2 Members | Mass Effect 2 Secret Party Members | Mass Effect 2 Main Antagonists | Mass Effect 2 Secondary Antagonists | Normandy Crew | Mass Effect 2 Council Space NPCs | Mass Effect 2 Non-Council Space NPCs | Party 3 Members | Mass Effect 3 Antagonists and NPCs | Mass Effect 3 Multiplayer Characters | Pathfinder Ryder | Party Andromeda Members | Crew of the Tempest | The Andromeda Initiative | The Kett | The Angara | Andromeda Other Characters | Multiplayer Characters

This page is for listing the tropes related to party members who first appeared in the second Mass Effect game. Specifically, the early half of the game and DLC.

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Party Members

Urdnot Grunt
I am pure krogan; you should be in awe.
"Grunt is... not a stabilizing element, Commander."
Joker's description

Voiced by: Steve Blum

A young lab-grown krogan with a violent attitude who believes that might makes right.

  • Action Genre Hero Guy: He has the harsh-sounding monosyllabic name, the orphan background (even if he doesn't care about Okeer and finds a Parental Substitute in both Shepard and Wrex) and the no-nonsense personality, and judging from the way his unfused head plates extend to his chin they're the Krogan equivalent of a buzzcut.
  • Alcohol-Induced Idiocy: During the Citadel DLC for 3, Grunt decides to celebrate his "birthday" by having a wild night out on the Citadel. Much property damage and hilarity ensues.
  • Appropriated Appellation: He took the name "Grunt" from one of Okeer's last words. It's noted that there were some more impressive words to use as a name, but he liked "grunt" for its simplicity (and because it has no greater meaning).
  • Asskicking Equals Authority: How Grunt asserts his command of Aralakh Company (essentially a collection of the best warriors from every krogan clan on Tuchanka) in Mass Effect 3.
  • Ax-Crazy: Subverted. As prone to violence as he is, Grunt makes a point of saying that he requires meaning in his life, and seeks to challenge and fight strong enemies. It's the fighting and glory he's after, not the death.
  • Badass Baritone: Just look at his voice actor.
  • Badass Boast:
    • "I don't need luck. I have ammo."
    • During his Last Stand: "My turn, heh heh heh."
  • Badass Bookworm: The Shadow Broker dossier reveals that Grunt has taken a liking to the works of Ernest Hemingway, with the sole exception of "A Farewell to Arms" (See Genius Bruiser entry.)
  • Become a Real Boy: The goal to secure his loyalty.
  • Beehive Barrier: His Fortification power.
  • Big Eater: Overlaps with Extreme Omnivore. In the Citadel DLC for Mass Effect 3, some people try to coax their way in to Shepard's party with offers of food:
    "Yes, I like pie, and no, you can't come in."
    "You're selling cookies?, I shouldn't let you in. Damn."
  • Blood Knight: Even more so than normal for a krogan. Given the conditions on Tuchanka, with children and women deliberately separated from the fighting males, it's likely that he's had more exposure to the krogan warrior culture than usual for a krogan his developmental age.
  • The Berserker: Eventually matures into a relatively stable (by krogan standards) blood knight.
  • The Big Guy: Personality of a Class IV with the intelligence of a Class V. Definitely one of the strongest combat specialists. Just a wee bit unpredictable.
  • Big Guy Fatality Syndrome: His mission in 3 is a perfect example of this, down to him saying "I'll hold them off," but it's subverted if you completed his Rite of Passage.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: Any time there's a fight in the offing, Grunt will be all but jumping up and down with glee.
  • Born as an Adult: Or a teenager, anyway — he's designed to look younger than other krogan (e.g, his head-crest hasn't merged into a single plate yet, and his skin is lighter-colored than other krogan).
  • Bring It: Standard for a Krogan, but highlighted during his Last Stand with the rachni.
    Grunt: My turn. Heh heh heh.
  • Brutal Honesty: One of the most blunt and forward squad members, which can often be a source of unintentional comedy. For example, here's his reaction when stepping onto Tuchanka for the first time:
    Grunt: This is the great krogan homeworld? This is the land of the Kregak, Shiagur, and Veeoll? This chunk of rock is barely even worth standing on! Never thought I'd miss the tank...
    • If Morinth tries to hit him up:
    Grunt: Go away, asari slut.
  • Buffy Speak:
    • When he talks, if it's not Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness, it's this.
      Grunt: See, now we're having fun! Me remembering good deaths and you, with your... funny human thing.
    • On getting into cover:
      Grunt: We should hide behind... stuff.
  • Can't Hold His Liquor: If Shepard throws a wild party in the Citadel DLC, Grunt ends up passed out on the floor of their shower before the night is half over.
  • Child Soldier: By krogan standards, but he revels in it.
  • The Chosen One: Okeer created him to be a perfect krogan. Grunt eventually gets the mindset as well. The Urdnot Shaman seems to think this too, sending an email to Shepard demanding that they not get themself and Grunt killed.
  • Clones Are People, Too: Some of the less sympathetic krogan view him as an abomination, but others, such as Wrex and the Urdnot shaman, see him only as a fine specimen of a krogan, tank-bred or not.
  • Cloning Blues: Somewhat. He stops angsting about it once he's accepted by other krogan.
  • Coming-of-Age Story: His loyalty mission.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: He tries to kill Shepard until they demonstrate their worthiness to command him.
  • Does Not Like Spam: Doesn't like ramen, apparently, though he will eat almost damn near anything else—see below, though his objection is mostly based on its appearance rather than its taste. By 3, particularly in the Citadel DLC, he seems to have acquired a taste for it as well.
    Grunt: This what passes for food out here? My tastes run more along the lines of "edible". Looks like worms. Dead ones. This a Human thing? Ugh. I'll pass. I'll eat almost anything, but I stress 'almost'.
  • Do Not Go Gentle: If he dies in 3, he's going out the way Krogan were meant to: in combat. He'll rack up a serious body count in the process too.
  • Enemies Equals Greatness: This is why he follows Shepard so loyally. Anyone who has made the kind of enemies that Shepard has made has earned his respect.
    Grunt: This is why I follow you Shepard. BIG THINGS!
  • Establishing Character Moment: Bursting out of his tank, pinning Shepard to the wall and demanding that he be given a purpose. Then giving a small laugh of amusement when Shepard either reveals they've been holding a gun to Grunt's stomach all this time or actually shoots Grunt in the armor a few times to get him to back off.
  • Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: His Shadow Broker dossier shows that he went on extranet searches for "Urdnot Wrex" to "tyrannosaurus wrex" to "Earth lizard wrex" to "dinosaurs". One can presume Grunt would have been all geared up to go test his mettle against such dangerous, deadly and massive creatures on Earth, only to be disappointed upon learning he was 65 million years too late.note 
  • Evil Laugh: When things are about to get/already are violent, he has this low-pitched slow "Heh heh heh" laugh, as if he is giddy with anticipation in his own little way at the prospect of a fight.
  • Extreme Omnivore: Gets hungry at certain scenes of violence, to the disgust of his teammates. In Citadel he even ate a lamp while drunk.
  • "Facing the Bullets" One-Liner: In 3, when faced with hundreds of rachni husks, he quips "Heh... my turn." Subverted if he was loyal in 2, in which case he comes out covered in their blood and none the worse for wear.
  • Fantastic Racism: He hates turians, thanks to the tank's images. However, as he can explain to Shepard, this doesn't apply to Garrus, since he's part of Shepard's "clan".
  • Father to His Men: In 3, to Arlakh Company. If Shepard frees the Rachni Queen, Grunt will be visibly upset and growling "Damn you, Shepard!" because it'll certainly mean the death of his men to Hold the Line. Despite being a Blood Knight, his people aren't expendable.
  • Foe-Tossing Charge: In the 3rd game, while his squad is pinned down, you get to watch him charge a Ravager, pick it up and throw it off a cliff.
    • A short time later, he does it to cover Shepard's escape, killing half a dozen Ravagers in seconds before tackling one off a cliff. And if you have his loyalty? He survives it.
    • Does this in his introduction, charging into Shepard full force and violently elbowing them into the wall by the neck. If it had been any human other than Shepard, they most certainly would have died.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration: He's the only party member in 2 that uses Armor instead of Shields or Barriers for protection. On Tali's recuitment mission, he's consequently uneffected by the sunlight's shield-and-barrier-draining effect.
  • Genius Bruiser: He had the military knowledge of several krogan warlords imprinted into him while he was being created. He's also a fan of Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness, although he's rather young and doesn't always have the words he needs to describe things.
    • And now, in Lair of the Shadow Broker, you find out he's reading (audiobook) Hemingway! He's finished The Old Man and The Sea & For Whom The Bell Tolls, and is working on The Sun Also Rises. Not a fan of A Farewell To Arms however.
    • He also apparently loves dinosaurs; he was apparently doing an extranet search on Urdnot Wrex, when he encountered entries on Tyrannosaurus Rex - and that got him into looking into Earth dinosaurs. The Old Man and the Sea apparently also got him interested in sharks.
    • He might possibly be an Otaku as he makes a Cowboy Bebop reference while drunk in the shower and might be a fan of that anime.note 
    • He also possibly makes a Harry Potter reference and might be a fan of the book series as he asks "are you a wizard" also while he was drunk in the shower. He most likely read the Harry Potter book series on audiobook.
      • Note that his spelling isn't perfect. Logical, though — he was educated in a tank, and the Earth books he read were audiobooks.
  • Grievous Harm with a Body: Uses pieces of the Reaper-enhanced Rachni as weapons while buying time for Shepard and the Rachni Queen to escape in 3.
  • Hard Work Hardly Works: Every other teammate has gone through various forms of hell to be worthy of joining the team — Grunt is actually born in the Normandy SR-2's cargo bay ready to kick ass alongside them. He's actually kind of bothered by this, mourning his "thousand weaker brothers" who were sacrificed to make him an Uberkrogan.
  • Healing Factor: Grunt's passive skill gives him continuous regeneration. Fully upgraded and combined with his massive HP pool, this makes him exceptionally hard to kill even on Insanity.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: In the third game. He stays behind to fight off the indoctrinated rachni and falls down a cliff with one. And, if he's loyal, it's subverted. As the team gets ready to head out to their next assignment, Grunt comes out, covered in rachni-husk blood, and asks a simple question:
    Grunt: Anyone got... something to... eat?
  • Hold the Line: In 3. Whether he survives or not depends on if you completed his loyalty mission.
  • Icy Blue Eyes: One thing that differentiates Grunt from other Krogan are his brilliant blue eyes. It's not explained, whether it's just a part of Okeer's genetic engineering, or young Krogan have blue eyes (since other teen-equivalent Krogan have not been seen.)
  • If You Ever Do Anything To Hurt Him: After Grunt is inducted to Clan Urdnot, the Shaman sends Shepard a very stern email telling him to make sure Grunt survives, because he's very important to the shaman and Urdnot as a whole.
  • Incendiary Exponent: Mentioned, though not seen, in the Citadel DLC. During his drunken night out on the Citadel, he mentions that riot foam didn't stop him because he was on fire due to stealing a burning C-Sec squad car.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: "Turians, I guess you have to work the blade. I don't see much point to it, though." Beat "Heh, much point... oh, never mind."
  • In Love with Your Carnage: He's very appreciative of Jack's escape from Purgatory if you take him with you, specifically the bodies she's leaving behind.
  • The Knights Who Say "Squee!": Thinks highly of both Shepard (especially Paragon Shepard) and Wrex.
  • Laser-Guided Tyke-Bomb: Okeer created him to lead the krogan against his personal enemies. However, his "programming" failed and Grunt could not care less about Okeer's goals.
  • Last Stand: In 3. Though he'll survive if loyal.
  • Late to the Punchline: Grunt finally starts giggling when he figures out some of his imprinted memories, like the image of a dead turian disfigured horribly (specifically, a krogan prying off the turian's face plates with a claw hammer). He thinks of it as hilarious because he "finally gets it": turians suck. When he tries to explain why it's funny, Shepard is nonplussed.
  • Lightning Bruiser: The most durable squadmate, and with the Claymore shotgun, he deals out a ton of damage. Even capable of doing the infamous krogan charge. And the charge? If he does it to another krogan, he'll push them back. This includes the considerably larger warlord on his loyalty mission. Also, Scions.
  • Lonely Piano Piece: During his Last Stand.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • Despite choosing his name for the fact it doesn't have any greater meaning, Grunt endures a lot in order to prove himself worthy of the respect of other krogan, who look down on him for the manner of his birth. In that respect, he does indeed start out as a Grunt.
    • Eve mentions that the first noise a krogan makes becomes their name. Grunt is a kind of noise.
  • Murder Is the Best Solution: Blood Knight standard procedure.
  • Neural Implanting: The "imprints" he was given by Okeer when he was being grown in the tank. This is how he knows how to breathe, walk, talk, and kick ass. Unfortunately, the imprints were often without context.
    Grunt: Like holding a book for a child. Just "remember this," picture after picture. No help with finding a reason to care.
  • Non-Standard Character Design: His boulder-like forehead. No other krogan with a head structured like this is ever encountered in the entire franchise. Word of God offers a doylist explanation in that it's meant to resemble the unfused skull plates of a human baby, but no watsonian explanation has yet been offered in or out-of universe. Every krogan immediately calls him "young one" or "whelp", indicating that he's instantly recognized as a juvenile by other krogan.
  • Not in This for Your Revolution: Unlike most of the team (the other exceptions being Zaeed, Kasumi, and Jack, who are all paid mercenaries), he couldn't care less about saving people from the Collectors. He just wants a good fight.
  • One-Man Army: Specifically designed by Okeer to be a krogan "lance" as opposed to their regular horde-based tactics.
    • If he's the only squadmate left to Hold the Line against the Collectors on the Suicide Mission, he can do so himself and come out alive.
    • His Heroic Sacrifice in 3 has him going toe to toe with a small army of Reaper forces (including many Ravagers) to buy Shepard's team time to shuttle the Rachni Queen to safety. Assuming his loyalty was gained in the last game, he survives this stunt.
  • Only Mostly Dead: In the third game, if you earned his loyalty. After said cliff-dive, he shows up just as the shuttle's about to leave, limping and covered in gallons of blood, but alive (and wondering if anyone has something to eat).
  • Optional Party Member: While his recruitment mission is mandatory, you don't actually have to release him from his tank.
  • Parental Substitute:
    • Shepard, particularly Paragon Shepard, acts as one to him. Particularly in the Citadel DLC for 3, where Shepard has to bail him out with C-Sec after his wild night out on the Citadel.
      Shepard: Grunt, you apologise to the nice man for setting his car on fire.
      Grunt: Fine, I'm sorry for setting your car on fire...
      [notices Shepard's look]
      Grunt: ... and I won't do it again.note 
    • Wrex also takes a shine to Grunt and adopts him into clan Urdnot, with an attitude of almost grooming Grunt to take over as the leader of clan Urdnot when he dies.
  • Pinocchio Syndrome: Being an artificially created Ubermensch-krogan has left him strangely wanting to be accepted merely as a krogan. Even though he could probably take out anyone in clan Urdnot in single combat (even Wrex), he still gets incredibly thrilled to go through his Rite of Passage to become accepted into the clan. Before that point, he had little to fight for. After that, he adopts his I! AM! KROGAN! Catchphrase. It's actually incredibly meaningful underneath all that bravado, because he fully internalizes what it means to be krogan as his very identity.
  • Playing with Fire: He, like Jacob (and possibly Shepard) has regeneration-stopping Incendiary Ammo.
  • Precocious Crush: Given his actual age and frequency to behave like a child, and some things he says about Liara in the Citadel DLC, he may have one of these on her.
  • Proud Warrior Race Guy: Eventually. Being accepted into the Urdnot clan really heals his tattered ego.
  • Psychopathic Man Child: Many of his mannerisms come across as rather child-like at times. He also plays with action figures on his spare time when he's not busy killing stuff, eating and reading Hemingway. Make sense since he's less than a year old. His actions in the Citadel DLC (and Paragon Shepard's response to them) also point in this direction.
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: I. AM. KROGAN!
  • Really Was Born Yesterday: As stated, you essentially witness his birth when you release him from his tank.
  • Replacement Goldfish: For his "father" Warlord Okeer, who was originally meant to be recruited on the Suicide Mission, but sacrificed himself to ensure Grunt's survival.
  • Sealed Badass in a Can: He's tank-bred, so he was actually created in the "can" rather than being initially sealed in it. When his tank is obtained, it's left up to the player when to open the can and let the badass out. He even plays the "neutral" part of the trope straight; he doesn't care much about morality, only asskicking.
  • Signature Laugh: Grunt's low, drawling "Heh...heh...heh".
  • Slasher Smile: Accompanies the laugh.
  • Sociopathic Hero: He couldn't care less about saving humanity. He just wants a good fight. And he laughs quite maniacally as he's tearing into your opponents. He gets better in 3, particularly if Wrex is the Urdnot leader.
    Kelly Chambers: I don't know what to feel about Grunt. My psych reports were for Okeer. We have no guarantees that Grunt is mentally stable. I get the feeling he just doesn't care about anything, including who lives or dies.
  • Smarter Than You Look: On top of being a krogan, a race not exactly known for its smarts, trailers made him seem quite basic in personality, but in fact he's conflicted, knowledgeable, and can talk with surprising eloquence on both these things and his frustration with the former. If he sounds less than intelligent, it's because big words have no "meaning" for him; that is, they're a waste of energy.
  • Smug Super: He was designed to be the perfect krogan and is very self-assured about this. Although, several conversations imply that deep down he doesn't really see himself as such, leading him to overcompensate as a result.
  • Stone Wall: He can become this if you level him right; maxing out his Fortification power and giving him the Krogan Pureblood power can increase his health and defenses to the point where he will almost never die, but he won't do as much damage.
  • Super Soldier: Grown in a vat to be the "perfect" krogan.
    • Part of his loyalty mission involves killing a Thresher Maw on foot. Alliance handbooks tell you to take on a Maw with a few tanks and even then: expect losses.
  • Super Strength: Comes with being a krogan. His genetically inferior "brother" manages to lift a metal sheet massing nearly four metric tons before we meet him, for comparison. This comes up in gameplay as well, as Grunt is one of only three members of the team who can use weapons with arm-breaking levels of recoil, like the Claymore. The others are the cybernetically-enhanced Shepard and the fully-artificial Legion.
  • Sweet Tooth: Grunt apparently has a special fondness for cookies, as well as pie.
  • This Cannot Be!: If taken to the plague-infested part of Omega (Mordin's recruitment mission): "I do not get sick!"
  • Took a Level in Badass: While he was always a terrifyingly effective fighter, his leadership skills improve massively between the second and third games. In the former, he's flagged as one of the poor choices for fireteam leader. In the latter, he ends up leading a multi-national squad of elite krogan soldiers, keeping them in line with a combination of good leadership and Asskicking Equals Authority.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: The recruitment mission was clearly intended to make the player think they were getting Warlord Okeer as a squadmate. Getting Grunt instead was supposed to be a minor twist, but it was ruined by the pre-release trailer. Averted with Grunt's personality, however. Until the game was leaked, there was no indication that he was anything other than a typical krogan Blood Knight.
  • Troll: Enjoys saying "no" to party crashers a little too much.
  • Übermensch: He was created to be one, although he has little interest in it.
  • Ultimate Life Form:
    • Along with being the perfect warrior, this was what he was meant to be for the krogan species.
    • If you kill the Thresher Maw as part of his Loyalty quest he becomes one of two Krogans in a thousand years to kill a Maw on foot. The other was Wrex (though Grunt, unlike Wrex, didn't do it on his own).
      Grunt: I am pure krogan. You should be in awe.
  • Undying Loyalty: Even before his mission, he seems to have nothing but respect for Shepard, his "Battlemaster". He even threatens Uvenk for spitting on Shepard's name. This is because he loves to fight, and Shepard brings him along to fight "BIG THINGS".
    Grunt: Shepard is my battlemaster. He/she has no match.
    • More pronounced with a Renegade Shepard. Grunt is clearly bristling at some of Shepard's commands, and really doesn't like it when Shepard speaks for him in front of Uvenk, even admitting Shepard's pissed him off more than once, but still says the above line.
    • Exemplified when Shepard commands he abandon Aralakh Company to help free the Rachni Queen. Despite being a Father to His Men and cursing Shepard, he still does it without a second thought.
  • Unstoppable Rage: Constantly. Apparently this is the default state for his species. The Rite of Passage was devised simply to help teenage krogan get a handle on it — kind of like a young human's father taking him to a strip bar, except with guns and monsters. The sex comes afterward if a female is suitably impressed by the display. The Codex notes, however, that the rage only became so commonplace after the krogan devastated Tuchanka in nuclear war (before that, it was extremely rare and regarded as pathological). Admittedly, the Codex is an in-universe resource.
  • Warrior Poet: According to the Shadow Broker's dossier on him, he's become a fan of Hemingway.
    • Heck, even his dialogue from the beginning. His word choice is exquisite. This appears to be intentional on Okeer's part. Okeer similarly is surprisingly eloquent, even poetic, when speaking to Shepard upon their first meeting. It's entirely possible he programmed Grunt likewise.
  • Weapon of Choice: While he's good with rifles and will use them when necessary, he seems to prefer shotguns. In 2, he's one of only two squadmates with a unique weapon: the Claymore heavy shotgun. In 3, he can be seen wielding an Eviscerator throughout the Rachni Caves mission.
  • We Have Reserves: He was engineered by Okeer to be an aversion to this trope; were Okeer to cure the genophage, the krogan would go back to spawning like mad and covering the galaxy with their hordes. Okeer believes the true future of the krogan is to have superior, elite warriors rather than cannon fodder, hence why he made the Super Prototype, Grunt, and threw away the thousands that did not meet his standards.
  • Worthy Opponent: One of the first indications that he views Shepard as one is the little smirk he gives when he realizes Shepard had quietly pulled a gun and had it trained on Grunt the entire time Grunt had them pinned against the wall.
    Grunt: Hah! Offer one hand, but arm the other. Wise, Shepard.
    • He comes to see the Collectors as this, stating that he "won't disrespect their strength by doing anything less than the worst to them."
    • In 3, he notes that Okeer took pains to ensure he knew about and respected the rachni this way.
  • Younger Than He Looks: He's The Big Guy and a damned good one, but he's a Designer Krogan grown in a Krogan Jar and trained by Neural Implanting. You don't recruit him so much as "inherit" his Krogan Jar. When you crack it open and start chatting, you're basically witnessing his birth. It's emphasized during the Citadel DLC when he behaves like a rowdy high school or college student during his "rampage", and is chastised like one by Shepard.
  • You Shall Not Pass!: During his mission in 3 whether you choose to save his team or the rachni, he has to escort you out of the caves and hold off a wave of Ravagers. He survives if you completed his loyalty mission.

Jack, AKA Subject Zero, (nee Jennifer)
Turns out, mess with someone's head enough and you can turn a scared little kid into an all-powerful bitch.
"I'm not saying anything about Jack. I'm not stupid."
Joker's description

Voiced by: Courtenay Taylor

A powerful and unstable human biotic with a chequered past. Formerly a biotics test experiment of Cerberus. She is a romance option for a male Shepard.

  • Abnormal Ammo: She gains Warp Ammo after you earn her loyalty, which increases damage against armor, biotic barriers and health, and does double damage to anything under the effects of a biotic power, like Pull or Shockwave.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: Played with. She admires Renegade Shepard's bloodlust and cruelty, but the Renegade version of her romance is not treated as a serious thing by either one, but rather just a one-night stand. The Paragon romance with her is much more lasting and heartfelt.
  • Ambiguously Bi: She mentions that one of the first criminals she ran with was a woman and her boyfriend who "shared their bed" with her. However, if you keep talking to her as female Shepard, she says she doesn't play for that club. The dialogue for both lines is pretty ambiguous, but then, she's a pretty messed up girl who might not have her own feelings straight.
    • In the Citadel DLC, she says she finds drunken Tali adorable, and says "If I were a little drunker and knew how to unzip that suit..." If the party takes a different turn, however, she gets pissed at the implication that her animosity with Miranda is just thinly-veiled sexual tension. She also tells Miranda that she has "fantastic tits".
    • It was eventually confirmed by her writer that she was originally intended to be pansexual, but her romance with female Shepard got cut late in development.
  • And I Must Scream: If you don't rescue the students from Grissom Academy in Mass Effect 3 in time, Jack will end up being turned into a Phantom.
  • Anguished Declaration of Love: In the Citadel DLC, a romanced Jack explains her motivation behind the tattoo she gives Shepard. It becomes Foreshadowing in a high EMS Destroy ending.
    Shepard: Good enough for an ID?
    Jack: (near tears) Good enough so that if you’re ever hurt, barely breathing, lying under a pile of rubble at the ass end of this war, you’re gonna have… you’re gonna have something that tells the galaxy that you belong to me.
  • Anti-Hero: Strongly of the Nominal Hero kind. Shows signs of moving up the scale towards Pragmatic Hero with even a hint of a Knight in Sour Armor under the influence of Paragon Shepard. Lampshaded by her students, who lovingly call her "The Psychotic Biotic."
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Subverted. Her extensive list of crimes includes piracy, theft of a military craft, destruction of a space station, and vandalism. When asked, she clarifies that vandalism is what the hanar called it when she added a new crater to one of their moons by dropping the space station on it.
    Jack: They really liked that moon.
  • The Atoner: With some Freudian Excuse tossed in. It's not a coincidence she's happy being the teacher of biotic children, considering what the Teltin Facility was doing with biotic research.
  • Ax-Crazy: Even Grunt and Zaeed are impressed with her bloodlust. She grows out of it, becoming more of a mild Blood Knight in 3. If captured by Cerberus however, she becomes this again, and this time irreversibly so.
  • Badass Biker: One of her alternate DLC outfits in 2. Her new look in 3 also gives off this image.
  • Badass Boast:
    • One of her lines when a new wave of enemies come onto the field is "Hello, dead people!"
    • Here's another: "If I die, I'm haunting you, Shepard."
    • She also gets one from Warden Kuril, who refers to her fearfully as "The meanest handful of violence and hate I've ever encountered. Dangerous, crazy and very powerful."
    • "I will destroy you!" would be this if the first game hadn't ruined this line for the players.
  • Badass Teacher/Cool Teacher: In Mass Effect 3.
  • Bald Head of Toughness: Jack is an Ax-Crazy biotic Glass Cannon Dark Action Girl, who is canonically one of the strongest biotic users in the franchise due to being experimented on from childhood by Cerberus to be so. Her biotic strength is paired with an emotional hardness and lack of care about anyone else besides herself that makes getting close to her difficult. She has her head shaved and tattooed when you recruit her on your team in this game. If you were able to break through her emotional barriers, when you meet her in Mass Effect 3 she has transitioned from a Jerkass to a Jerk with a Heart of Gold, who now oversees and trains a young group of biotics. Along with her softening emotionally, she has grown out her hair into a still edgy Tomboyish Ponytail with shaved sides look.
  • Bald of Evil: Shaved her head for a cult, and kept it that way. While she's still a squadmate for you, she remains violent and generally psychopathic. By the third game, she cleans up her act and lets her hair grow out.
  • Bare Your Midriff: Jack bares a lot more than that. In her default appearance, the only thing around Jack's torso is a belt wrapped around her chest. In 3, she dresses in a similar manner, but also wears a small leather jacket with it.
  • Because You Can Cope: If you side with Miranda in the Jack/Miranda loyalty conflict, the "Intimidate" option for regaining Jack's loyalty has Shepard explain that Jack is tough when she's angry, and Shepard needs Jack's "edge." Besides, Jack would've reacted badly if Shepard had kissed her ass.
  • Being Tortured Makes You Evil
  • The Big Damn Kiss: If romanced, Shepard can kiss her at the end of their game together in the Arena... while an Atlas mech blows up in the background.
  • The Big Guy: Not necessarily in physical size, but she definitely fits in personality.
  • Blood Knight: She was conditioned to feel most alive while fighting, and it shows. Even after she Took a Level in Kindness in 3, she still clearly loves being in a fight.
  • Bookends: You first meet her at a prison named Purgatory in Mass Effect 2. In Mass Effect 3, not counting the Citadel DLC, the last place you can interact with her is in a bar with the same name.
  • Boxed Crook: You were originally just going to borrow her from max security space prison/slave ship to finish a mission, but certain events have left her quite a bit less constrained.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy:
    • She was given euphoric drugs as a kid while fighting to condition her to equate killing with pleasure.
    • Will be programmed to fight for Cerberus if you don't do her ME3 quest; you fight her at the Cerberus base. Making it harsher, if you took Jack with you on Legion's personal quest: "I'd never want to be brainwashed like that. Just kill me instead, please."
  • Break His Heart to Save Him: If Shepard plays the Paragon route while trying to win her affection, then Jack tries to scare Shepard away to prevent them both from getting hurt. However, she grows fond of him if Shepard prevails anyway.
  • Broken Bird: To say she's got issues is putting it lightly.
    Jack: I feel like... I'm pissed off. I'm a dangerous bitch. But then, I'm a little girl again. Shit, it's complicated.
  • Bruiser with a Soft Center: Thanks to some Character Development throughout the game, Jack can display a much more vulnerable side towards others while still enjoying kicking butt.
  • Buffy Speak: If you bring her to the Collector ship.
    Jack: I'm not gonna let [the Reapers] turn me into some fucked up... bug thing.
  • Card-Carrying Villain: Pre-Character Development.
  • Character Development: She undergoes perhaps the most extensive one in the series, especially if romanced by a male Paragon Shepard: she starts out as a barely controllable, mean-tempered, ultra-violent criminal who takes her rage and pain out on others in a futile attempt to make herself feel better; but ends up as a devoted teacher of biotic children who genuinely cares about her pupils and finds herself falling in love with the savior of the galaxy. It all starts with her loyalty mission, which forces her to acknowledge that she wasn't the only biotic kid to suffer at that facility, as well as to accept the fact that the entire facility was built around her abilities in the first place. Depending on how you treat her, she can either stay a Dark Action Girl or show a softer side. This is shown in the two possible culminating scenes for a romance with her, one of which is just about sex, the other of which is far more tender.
    • It's worth noting that while assaulting the Collector base, if you choose her to man the biotic barrier through the Seeker Swarm room and she's loyal, she'll refer to you as "Commander" like she means it. For as violently psychotic and unruly a character as Jack is, that's speaking volumes about her development under Shepard's command. More than that, she phrases the word Commander around appropriate statements. That is, instead of being snarky, she uses more short and to the point phrases that you'd expect from more disciplined crew members.
    • There's also the Suicide Mission: if you choose to have her lead a team during it, her final words will be "Too many... tore me up. How'd you talk me into this? Heh... I wasn't supposed to care." Apparently, being around a Messianic Archetype long enough can make even Jack give a damn about everyone else.
    • If she's still alive in 3, she's become a teacher with a very strong bond with her pupils, due mostly to Shepard's influence, thus sticking it to the Illusive Man by protecting biotics from people like him.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Inverted: she believes everyone else suffers from this, which leads to her Murder Is the Best Solution philosophy. This attitude is challenged when her pirate lover chose a Heroic Sacrifice instead of betraying her, causing Survivor Guilt. She gets over it by 3, when she's a teacher.
  • Cluster F-Bomb:
    • Constantly. In fact, she drops all but two or three of the game's F-bombs — mainly because she's the only character who uses the word in regular conversation.
    • If you start to romance her and then push her away at the end (either to pursue a different partner or just For the Evulz), or if you side with Miranda in their conflict, all she will ever say to you from then on is, "Fuck off!"
    • Toned down a bit in 3 when she becomes a teacher at Grissom. Gotta set a good example for the students, after all.
    • Until Joker provokes her, that is. But see Curse Cut Short below.
    • And in the Citadel DLC she's back in form.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Subjected to it by Cerberus during her childhood, hence why she is the way she is.
    • And if you don't save Grissom Academy in the third game, Cerberus captures her and inflicts this on her again, turning her into a Phantom that you will have to kill.
  • Colony Drop/Deface of the Moon: She committed "vandalism" by smashing a space station into the hanar's favorite moon.
  • Cooldown Hug:
    • Her sex scene with a romanced Shepard in 2 will just involve her hugging him fully clothed with an air of Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex.
    • A romanced Shepard gives her one in Citadel when she starts breaking out in tears about how worried she is to lose him.
  • Covered with Scars: Played with. The tattoos mask them from a distance, but she's covered in surgical scars from Teltin. While they don't cover her entire body, and are mostly hidden by tattoos, they still show somewhat. The most prominent ones are on the back of her neck just below her head and on the top and bottom of her torso.
    Jack: You see the scars, Rodriguez? Come on, take a good look. Cerberus did this to me when I was half your age.
  • Cry Cute: Jack begins openly weeping when she comes to Shepard's cabin and he promises to stop the questions and just be there with her; it makes her makeup run on her cheeks.
  • Curse Cut Short:
    Jack: (to her students) Cover your ears, kids. (to Joker) Hey, Joker, f— [loading screen]
    • Immediately before that:
      Jack: (responding to Joker's jab) Screw you, f... light lieutenant...
  • Cuteness Proximity: In Citadel, she gets this way with her pet varren.
  • Cutscene Power to the Max: When she first appears, she tears through three YMIR mechs like they were made of wet cardboard. In normal gameplay, you're usually popping in and out of cover and gradually whittling them down and she's probably the weakest of any party member against them, since her two active powers, Shockwave and Pull, both have next to no effect on an YMIR.
    • In Citadel she uses Shockwave to blow up an Atlas mech from across the arena. In actual gameplay, Shockwave has very short range and has very little effect on an Atlas' shields and armor.
  • The Cynic: Given her past, it's not surprising. Paragon Shepard helps get her out of this a little bit and into Knight in Sour Armor territory, but it's a slow process.
  • Dare to Be Badass: Her general tone to teaching her students in 3. Her lighthearted berating of her students does well to inspire them to succeed.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Yeah. As a baby, Cerberus abducted her, and took her to an isolated training facility where they used her as a guinea pig for experiments, hated by the other children and forced to fight and occasionally kill them. Jack eventually managed to escape... and then spent several more years being mistreated and manipulated by damn near everyone she ran into for her biotic powers, in-between acts of minor and major criminality, and Cerberus chasing after her, several stints in various prisons, followed by escape attempts followed by getting reimprisoned by Cerberus having a bounty on her.
  • Dark Action Girl: Becomes an Action Girl in 3.
  • Dating Catwoman: Technically this is her romantic relationship with Paragon Shepard. She's an Ax-Crazy criminal and he's a Lawful Good Spectre.
  • Death by Sex: In a roundabout way; she'll proposition a Male Shepard for sex shortly after arriving on the Normandy. If the player accepts - against the advice of the ship's counselor - Jack will refuse to talk to Shepard for the remainder of the game, meaning that you won't be able to do her loyalty mission and she will be much more likely to die during the suicide mission.
  • Death Glare: She's usually seen with an angry grimace when ready to kill.
  • Death Seeker: Heavily implied during conversations with her in 2. Jack admits that she has no plan for the future other than crime sprees. In her own words death to her is like an 'on/off switch'. Of course, she snaps out of this if she lives to 3.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: She has a very hardened exterior and prefers to be alone. However, Shepard can reach out to her, helping her slowly regain her faith in life. Much more so if romanced.
  • Destroy the Abusive Home: Her loyalty mission. Being Jack, she uses a bomb planted right in her old cell - and the explosion not only takes out the facility but a good chunk of the surrounding forest.
  • Does Not Know How to Say "Thanks": Pre-Character Development.
  • Does Not Like Men: Although she hates everyone, she seems to be wary towards men since she assumes All Men Are Perverts because of her Dark and Troubled Past. Shepard can coax her out of this if romanced.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Jack's pet from Mass Effect 3's Citadel DLC, Eezo the varren, is a short-tempered biotic animal that Jack had to rescue from an animal shelter. Initially it was extremely hostile, but Jack showed it lots of love, patience and trust, and now while it's still badass, it's become a "big softie" at heart. Shepard can see the parallels, but Jack apparently can't.
  • Doomed Hometown: Judging by her Shadow Broker dossier, Jack was born on Eden Prime.
  • Double Entendre: In the Citadel DLC, she openly says that she and a romanced male Shepard are going to have sex on the dining room table later. When an offended Cortez protests that people eat at that table, she snarks that yes, they do.
  • The Dreaded: Shepard and Miranda are the only people to consistently be unwary of Jack. The rest of the team (this being an entire Badass Crew mind you) will occasionally mention being uncomfortable or worried about her snapping. During her recruitment from Purgatory, an inmate will request to be bought as a slave for freedom (it being a corrupt prison ship where prisoners are beaten frequently, implied sometimes to death) only to immediately rescind the request after finding out you're leaving with Jack, stressing that being around her is the more dangerous option.
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: As one of Grissom Academy's instructors in the final game. Remarkably, she gets high praise and respect from both her students and superiors for it. She's a little milder than some examples, though; she admits to Shepard that the students are like her family and they need her to believe in them, and puts up with it when they cheerfully mock her.
  • Embarrassing Tattoo: If romanced by Shepard, she jokes in 3 that she's gotten an N7 tattoo on her ass.
  • Enemy Mine: Puts her hatred towards Cerberus aside since they both have a common enemy.
  • Establishing Character Moment: When she's released from cryo-stasis, Shepard's team is shocked that the Jack they've been hearing so much about is a scrawny litte woman covered in tattoos. Then she wakes up, destroys three YMIR mechs and goes on a rampage across Purgatory.
  • Everyone Has Standards: She is slightly troubled by Shepard urging Niftu Cal, the "Biotic God," to get himself killed, even though she admits it was kind of funny.
    Jack: That was mean... but damn funny.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: She immediately assumes that Shepard's attempts to get to know her have an angle of some kind. She almost-immediately propositions a male Shepard, assuming he's only chatting her up to get into her pants. Accepting locks you out of her Romance, something Kelly will warn you about. Her coming to grips with the fact that Shepard's concern stems from genuine altruism, or even love, is a big part of her Character Development.
  • Evil Counterpart: While not pure evil, she's basically a dark reflection of Kaidan Alenko from the first game. Only replace the Alliance-run BaAT bootcamp with a rogue Cerberus facility, being surrounded by friends with solitary confinement, where the other children are afraid of you, and the grueling training with surgical experimentation and outright torture.
  • Evil Feels Good: At least that's what she would most likely tell you. It turns out that she doesn't exactly have a choice; Cerberus conditioned her to feel that way.
    Jack: I still get warm feelings during a fight.
  • Evil Is Petty: Her fight with Miranda in a nutshell. Cold as Miranda acts, Jack was still looking for a fight there and was only causing trouble because she wanted to hear Miranda admit that what Cerberus did to her was wrong. And if Shepard chooses not to take her side, you lose her loyalty (though the same is also true of Miranda if you side with Jack). Granted, Jack had a more justifiable reason to be offended, as Miranda's loyalty had nothing to do with her allegiance to Cerberus anyway.
  • Exposed to the Elements: Jack wears stripperiffic outfits in space.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: You see her again in Mass Effect 3 with her hair on top grown out long enough for a short pony tail. She still keeps her temples shaved.
  • Expy: Several aspects of her character mirror those of Jack B. Badd, being a bald female convict and runawaynote  who developed into a Bruiser with a Soft Center as she grew older. The emphasis of her Gender Reveal upon her introduction also parallels the latter character's reveal as a girl, which was one of the major twists of Pitch Black when it first came out in theaters.
  • Eye Color Change: In ME3, her eyes turn blue when she uses her biotics.
  • Fantastic Drug: Red sand in dummied-out content.
  • Fetishized Abuser: If Shepard tries to romance and show he cares about her, she treats him like utter shit and snaps completely if she does drive him away, but ends up in perhaps the most touching romance scene if Shepard can persevere.
  • Fluffy Tamer: Shows up with a biotic varren from Thessia in the Citadel DLC.
  • For the Evulz: Her motivation a lot of the time. She grows out of it.
  • Forceful Kiss: At the start of her optional casual sex scene with Shepard, she shoves him against the wall and then rushes toward him, grabbing him and forcing a deep kiss on his lips.
  • Freaky Is Cool: She doesn't understand why Paragon Shepard wants to form a romantic relationship with her, but admits the idea is intriguing.
    Jack: (Smiling) You're weird Shepard. That kinda gets me off.
  • Freudian Excuse: She's got a particularly dark and grisly one for her backstory that explains her bloodlust and extremely antisocial nature. And also her Roaring Rampage of Revenge against Cerberus.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Started out as a normal little girl. Years of being tortured and used has turned her into one of the galaxy's most notorious criminals.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: Don't try to have Jack take on YMIR Mechs by herself. It won't end pretty, since she's basically a Glass Cannon.
  • Gender-Blender Name: Lampshaded when she is first seen, and then never mentioned again. Subverted, however, by her real name, Jennifer.
  • Glass Cannon: She's very powerful offensively, but she's very frail in combat, second only to Kasumi.
  • Gone Horribly Right: Cerberus got what they wanted.
  • Good Feels Good: She starts to succumb to this after her Heel–Face Turn. Teaching biotic kids like her really makes her understand why good feels better than evil.
  • Good People Have Good Sex: If successfully romanced by Paragon Shepard, she becomes a firm believer of this trope. Throughout 3, she casually remarks about wanting to have sex with Shepard a lot.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: She has significant scarring on her neck from the Teltin experiments. In the third game, if Shepard chooses the Renegade response to Rodriguez questioning whether Cerberus could be telling the truth about not harming people who surrender to them, Jack angrily shoves her scars into Rodriguez's face to prove what they do to people half her age.
  • Goth: Thinks very little of herself? Check. Cynical? Check. Loves deep, emotional poetry? Check. Full of emotional scars? Check. An admiration for death? Check. Wears pale makeup and black eyeliner? Check. Covered in beautiful tattoos that reflect her inner pain? Check. Hell-Bent for Leather? Check. Feared for being a loner? Check.
  • Goth Girls Know Magic: Jack shows shades of being a Goth with her penchant for leather clothing and her personality fitting the Lone Psycho type. She's also one of the most powerful human biotic in the The 'Verse.
  • Heel–Face Turn: A very gradual process that isn't fully completed until after 2.
  • Hell-Bent for Leather: Both her loyalty and alternate Badass Biker DLC outfit in 2.
    • Wears a studded leather jacket in her new job as a Badass Teacher in 3. According to Kahlee Sanders, it's as far as Jack is willing to compromise on the dress-code required for Grissom Academy's faculty members.
  • Hidden Buxom: That strap Jack has covering her chest on her default appearance is actually used as a constrictor binding her breasts to make them appear small because she doesn't like men checking her out. Ironically, not much is covered up since she doesn't wear a shirt. But, her appearance in 3 shows Jack's full endowment.
  • Hidden Depths: A Paragon Shep will peel away her layers, and even her voice will reflect this, as it goes from rough and masculine to soft and feminine by the time a romance is completed. At the end of the game, if she survives, no matter what her loyalty is, she'll give Shepard a determined nod, which is tantamount to a salute — and this was a woman who had no interest in anything or anyone but herself.
    • The Shadow Broker DLC also reveals that she writes poetry in her spare time under the pseudonym "Jacqueline Nought".
  • Hideous Hangover Cure: Averted. She reveals in the Citadel DLC thanks to her conditioning, she never feels any sort of morning-after hangover effects. She's exercising when she's first met up with after the party.
  • Incompletely Trained: The Pragia facility was shut down long before they could finish. With no one to fill in the gaps in her biotic abilities, Jack trained herself to use weapons instead.
  • I Need a Freaking Drink: In the Citadel DLC, if Shepard suggests to Jack that she and Miranda should kiss and make up.
  • In Love with Your Carnage: Summed up in this line from the Citadel DLC:
    Jack: [after blowing up an Atlas mech] If there's a God, that's what she sounds like. Just a big, deep "BWOOM!" to let you know everything's gonna be okay.
  • Institutional Apparel: Her starting outfit is the remains of her Purgatory uniform.
  • Intimate Marks: Everything below the neck is covered in ink, including her breasts.
  • In-Universe Catharsis: Pretty much the entire point of her loyalty mission. The achievement for gaining her loyalty is even called "Catharsis."
  • I Reject Your Reality: Despite the overwhelming evidence, she still refuses to believe that the Teltin facility's sole cause was to make her into what she is, and that she didn't survive solely because she was stronger than the rest.
  • It's All About Me: Not that she doesn't have a long list of reasons to feel this way, but regardless. If brought to Horizon and hearing about Husks, Jack will comment that it's almost as bad as what Cerberus did to her.
  • I "Uh" You, Too: Despite being in love with Shepard if romanced, she never says she is.
  • Jerkass: Pre-Character Development, and she knows it.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Her suspicions about Cerberus eventually betraying her and Shepard are proven correct in the end. By 3, the Illusive Man is revealed to have been manipulating Shepard to serve his own purposes the whole time.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: In 3.
  • Karma Houdini: She's a mass murderer guilty of piracy, theft of a military craft, destruction of a space station, and vandalism but if she survives to game 3 she suffers no mentioned legal troubles and in fact has been hired to teach biotic students at Grissom Academy. May also count as Earn Your Happy Ending, seeing as she had to take part in a galaxy-saving operation to earn enough respect from Hackett to get said posting. When trying and failing to recruit Kasumi again, Shepard says they can use their Spectre status to get her a pardon, so they probably did something similar for Jack.
  • Kick the Dog: A favorite past-time of hers pre Character Development, including but not limited to mass murder, destroying a moon, being a Jerkass, and being such a Troll that she's been banned from the extranet (among other places) several times. And most of this behavior is done For the Evulz.
  • Lack of Empathy: Initially. She gets better.
  • The Lad-ette: Her behavior isn't even remotely feminine.
  • Lady Swears-a-Lot: In ME3, Joker asks if she has a swear jar, because emptying it would buy another cruiser.
  • Last Girl Wins: MaleShep meets her last out of the women who give the Paramour achievement.
  • Last-Second Word Swap: At the end of the Grissom Academy mission.
    Jack: Screw you, f—flight lieutenant.
    Joker: Uhh, what the hell was that?
  • Lean and Mean: For such a small woman, Jack is very strong and cruel to others. This changes after her Heel–Face Turn...somewhat.
  • Loners Are Freaks: Likes to be alone in an isolated part under the ship. Shepard has the option to visit her though and can convince her to bond with others. By 3, she does.
  • Lovable Sex Maniac: In the Citadel DLC if you romance her. If you dance with her, she asks you to not tire yourself out because "We're gonna be doing it on the table later".note  The morning after she says she's horny, but contemplate that other people are already awake. She also makes several comments on Miranda's figure.
    Jack: You as turned on as I am right now?
    Shepard: (Confused) You want to have sex in the combat simulator?
    Jack: (Mischievously) No...I wanna make love.
  • Love Is a Weakness: Initially believes in this, but Paragon Shepard can convince her otherwise if romanced.
  • Love Redeems: The Paragon ending to her romance.
  • Male Gaze: Although not as much as Miranda, she still has it. When Shepard asks about her tattoos, the camera pans all over across her torso, with a close-up shot of her breasts. She even assumes Male Shepard is checking her out.
  • Mama Bear: You know that she's an ax crazy killer, right? By Mass Effect 3 she reserves that behavior for anyone who shows hostility towards her students at Grissom Academy. When the subject of her students fighting on the front lines is brought up, she'll show distress and non-verbally beg Shepard not to agree with Sanders' assessment; if Shepard says the students are best used for support (the safer option), Jack will brighten and cheerfully tell her students they go where they're assigned.
  • Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: Her relationship with Male Paragon Shepard, especially if romanced. She's the tough-as-nails, murderous criminal while he's the All-Loving Hero.
  • Meaningful Name: Presumably inspired by Jack London, who's famously quoted from Call of the Wild: "Kill or be killed, eat or be eaten, was the law; and this mandate, down out of the depths of Time, he obeyed." Also like London, Jack became quite the traveler.
  • Megaton Punch: She's fond of using biotics to create these.
  • Mildly Military: From the sound of things, she has some manner of provisional officer's rank in the Alliance Navy, judging from banter with Joker, and the fact that she's administrating her students' operations once they go into the field. Although it's given her purpose, she's still Jack, as most readily evidenced by her choice of attire. Shepard will comment that military life suits her, because it gives her everything she wants: room, board, three square meals, targets to attack — and people she can count on.
  • Mind over Matter: Considered to be the one of the most powerful human biotic.
  • Mini-Boss: If you don't do the Grissom Academy mission before a set time, or not at all, she gets indoctrinated and works for Cerberus, becoming a mini-boss in the Cerberus HQ.
  • Missing Child: How did Cerberus get Jack as the primary test subject? It turns out that Jack's mother was approached by an agent posing as her doctor, informing her that Jack was dying of a dangerous illness and they needed to take her baby away for diagnostics. Her mother trusted the agent and handed over her child, never to see her again. With Jack's parents unaware of their child's current status, she was nonexistent to the entire world and Cerberus was free to subject her to inhumane tests.
  • Morality Chain: Paragon Shepard becomes this to her. Acknowledged in 3 when she notes that some of Shepard's speeches rubbed off on her. Even she seems a little surprised by this. It works both ways — even a Paragon Shepard will respond to her "You as turned on as I am right now?" at the Armax Combat Simulator with a "Hell yes!" and Big Damn Kiss.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Somehow to a lesser extent than Miranda, despite showing many times as much skin as her probably due to Miranda being considerably better endowed than Jack). For starters, Jack doesn't wear a shirt in her default appearance (just a harness), exposing most of her chest and upper body.
    • It gets revealed in 3 that the harness was actually an attempt to avert this by compressing her bust to make it appear less impressive than it actually is. Why she didn't take the next logical step and wear an actual shirt on top of it is anyone's guess. (Answer: Show off the tattoos.)
    • In 3, she's more sexualized than Miranda is. Her pants are cut so that she's constantly showing off her bare hips, her harness bears tons of cleavage and if she's romanced she will just ooze sex with almost every word. Her dancing during the Citadel DLC only adds to it.
  • Murder Is the Best Solution: As should be obvious by this point.
    Shepard: What is it about killing that fascinates you so much?
    Jack: I figure every time someone dies and it's not me, my chances of survival go up. Simple.
  • My Eyes Are Up Here: When Male Shepard talks with her frequently, she assumes that he's checking her out and wants to use her for sex.
  • My Hero, Zero: She's a hero called Subject Zero. But, don't call her that nickname.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • She sometimes screams I WILL DESTROY YOU! in the same way the human biotic mooks did in Mass Effect.
    • Mocked by Rodriguez in ME3
      Rodriguez: I will destroy you!
      Jack: Drink your juice, Rodriguez. You couldn't destroy wet tissue paper.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Inverted. Also, it would be too late for you to run anyway.
  • The Nicknamer: Refers to Miranda as "the Cheerleader" and Paragon Shepard as "King of the Boy Scouts" or "Queen of the Girl Scouts" depending on their gender.
  • Noodle Incident: While it doesn't get nearly as much attention due to being brought up in the same conversation as the "vandalism incident," all she says about stealing a military craft is, "Shouldn't have left the thing unlocked. Besides, parades are boring. I helped."
  • Not So Above It All: The most notorious, dangerous human criminal in the galaxy likes to write poetry and troll people on the internet.
  • Odd Friendship: Particularly with a Paragon Shepard, who she sarcastically refers to as "King/Queen of the Boy/Girl Scouts" in the third game. Nonetheless, it's clear that Jack owes a lot of her character development to Shepard's influence and she admits that all their speeches clearly rubbed off on her.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Jack is never called by her real name, chiefly because it was kept a secret by the Teltin project. Liara reveals she knows her real name, and divulges her first name, Jennifer.
  • The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: Judging by the confrontation between them, she seems to think this way about Miranda; she says she'll keep Miranda alive so she can tear her apart herself after the mission. Fortunately, she buries the hatchet with her later.
  • Oppose What You Suffered: Previous to Mass Effect 2, Jack was both a captive and a test subject of Cerberus when she was a child. If she survives the Suicide Mission Jack later becomes the Mama Bear (if Tough Love-practising) teacher of a group of young biotics in Mass Effect 3, when Cerberus comes back and attempts to abduct them in order to turn them into biotic assassins.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: And she revels in it.
  • Pet the Dog: Jack does have a few nice moments of kindness in the series.
    • During her loyalty mission, Shepard can convince her to spare Aresh's life instead of killing him.
    • In Grissom Academy, she saves the life of Rodriguez, the student she picks on the most, from Cerberus troops.
    • In the Citadel DLC, she adopts an abandoned varren to keep as a pet.
    • Her whole romance can be seen as this towards Paragon Shepard, since she was initially hostile towards him, but gave him a chance after he was so kind to her when he had every reason not to be.
  • Physical Scars, Psychological Scars: Jack's surgical scars from Tetlin are another reminder of her horrific time there. This also left her with some issues which she can work past, how much she progress varies depending on dialogue and story choices.
  • Power of Trust: Jack's inability to trust anyone has made her the Social Darwinist. She was thrown off by someone who sacrificed themselves so she could live. It isn't until she's in a situation (Grissom Academy) where she can wholeheartedly trust other people (her students, Kahlee Sanders) that she begins her true Character Development.
  • Power Perversion Potential: Biotic powers can be unstable during the act, but can also have "benefits." Mordin, as always, is the man to see.
  • Raised in a Lab: broke out one day in her teenage years and spent most of her adult life tearing around Citadel space, since the lab taught her how to control her phenomenal Biotic abilities and not much else. Including social norms. She's rude, crude, runs around topless, and once rammed a space station into a moon for giggles.
  • Rape as Backstory: It says something about her past when the multiple times she's been sexually assaulted count as some of her least traumatic memories.
    • If the player remains romantically interested in Jack, she'll openly kiss him in front of everyone, even her students, no longer afraid to show open affection.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: The red to Miranda's blue.
  • Retired Monster: Though she ultimately becomes a genuinely good person, she also never regrets any of her past misdeeds, including murdering dozens of people with little justification and crashing a space station into a moon.
  • Reforged into a Minion: If you skip Grissom Academy, she's captured and turned into a Cerberus Phantom.
  • The Reveal: If you completed the "Lair of the Shadow Broker" DLC in 2, taking Liara along to Grissom Academy in 3 reveals that Jack's birth-name is actually Jennifer, though Liara hasn't been able to discover her surname yet.
  • Revenge Before Reason: On her loyalty mission, Shepard has the option to point out that Jack's quest for vengeance is tearing her apart, making her more unstable than before. Jack eventually realizes this, and intends to control herself more often.
  • Revenge by Proxy: A variation. Jack snipes at Miranda a lot, (leading to quite a bit of animosity between them) likely because Miranda (being a Cerberus agent) is the easiest and most convenient outlet for her rage, even though Miranda wasn't even with Cerberus when they tortured Jack for years. She also takes issue with Miranda's "cheerleading" and excuses for the things Cerberus has done, including Pragia.
  • The Rival: To Miranda, complete with an The Only One Allowed to Defeat You mentality. This reaches its peak in during a catfight that Shepard has to head off, possibly also losing the loyalty of one or the other. Fortunately, as of the Citadel DLC, they've smoothed things over a bit.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Apparently a recurring event for her. You add her to the crew right after she finishes one of these. And you get her loyalty by blowing up the facility that made her who she is.
  • Samus Is a Girl: Everyone you talk to on the way to Jack's cell refers to her either in the third person or gender neutral pronouns (and in utter fear). And then you see this apparently small young woman break out of metal restraints and wipe out three heavy mechs with nothing but her biotics.
    Grunt: That's Jack? Jack is tiny. [Jack starts wrecking the place] Let's get down there, I wanna see!
    Legion: Jack is smaller than her reputation suggests. [Jack starts wrecking the place] Situation chaotic. Decisive action required.
  • Satisfied Street Rat: Although she's hardly "satisfied" unless she's in a fight. Not only that, but she is extremely pissed off at Cerberus for using her as a lab rat; while Shep can say "You enjoy the power they gave you," she's damn sore that "they didn't give (her) a choice".
  • Sex Equals Love:
    • Averted. Kelly mentions that Jack pushes people away, but approaches sex casually, and warns that having a one-night stand with her is a bad idea. Having sex with Jack is an option fairly early into the game. If the casual sex option is chosen, she's really into it, but says that she doesn't want to play if you try and talk to her again. If you refuse sex with her and show interest in her as a person, she'll eventually come out of her shell and begin to actually love Shepard.
    • During the final love scene between Jack and Shepard in 2, they don't have sex. Rather, Jack snuggles with Shepard contently. Considering her Rape as Backstory, she probably needs affection more than sex.
  • "Shut Up" Kiss: On the receiving end if Shepard romanced her when the Grissom Academy mission finishes. Shep grabs and kisses her before she gives too many details about her "N7 Tattoo".
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: She may be the Trope Codifier for this. If Paragon Shepard drops hints of romantic interest in her, then Jack will develop a serious crush on him. Although Jack does admire Renegade Shepard, she ends up falling in love with Paragon Shepard because of his kindness and real love for her. She even gets an N7 tattoo to remember him.
  • Slap-Slap-Kiss: If romanced in 2, the first thing she does to Shepard in 3 is deck him. note  Then give him a passionate kiss.
  • Slasher Smile: She enjoys fighting a lot.
  • Sociopathic Hero: "Heroic" is very much a stretch for her. At first.
  • So Proud of You: Some cut content from 3's endgame includes her reassuring her squad.
  • Statuesque Stunner: According to her mugshot which can be briefly seen in Lair of the Shadow Broker, Jack is roughly six feet tallnote . She is also noted to be very attractive by multiple characters.
  • Stealth Pun: She once used "Jacqueline Nought" as an alias, with "nought" being the British term for the American "zero." So she is "Jack Zero". If she died in 2, this is her listed name on the Normandy cenotaph.
  • Stern Teacher: She's tough on her students and receives their adoration in return. A bit crazier than most examples though.
  • Stripperiffic: Her first costume is essentially a strap across her breasts and a pair of pants; her alternate costume is a bit more modest. In Citadel she explains that it was a deliberate attempt to make her breasts look as small as possible, since showing off her rack in a prison ship would have been a bad idea. Though it must be pointed out that compressing your breasts with a harness is a fine idea if you're trying to look less sexually appealing, wearing only the harness defeats the purpose.
    • The third DLC outfit makes her a Badass Biker with a leather jacket, pants and shades, so everything is hidden, including tattoos.
    • Her outfit in 3 is more conservative, but it still shows quite a lot of skin.
  • Super Soldier: Cerberus wanted to make her a powerful biotic warrior... and they succeeded.
  • Survivor Guilt: One of the reasons she pushes everyone away is that the last person who cared about her ended up dying in order to save her instead of betraying her as she'd expected he would. This made her even more violent and reclusive.
    • Can get taken Up to Eleven in 3. If you chose to send her students to the front lines and romanced her, by the end, they'll all be dead as shall Shepard (in most endings). After all her major character development, everyone closest to her still dies.
  • Tattoo as Character Type: They're a way to reassert control over her body and remind her of the colorful life she's led since since escaping Pragia.
  • Tattooed Crook: Up to Eleven. The art book shows just how much detail and thought went into them, including tally marks for people she’s killed, including a skeleton tattoo with marks over each bone she killed a person by breaking. Needless to say, she's got a lot of tally marks.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: With everyone in 2, but especially Miranda.
  • Therapy Is for the Weak: The reason she doesn't take much exception to Renegade Shepard's lack of sympathy for her backstory, seeing herself less as someone who really needs some therapy, and more someone who just needs to be told to suck it up and stop whining. That, and she thinks Renegade Shepard's attitude is funny.
  • There Was a Door: Justified: After being released from cryo, she has to escape somehow, and the quickest way is to break through walls with her biotics.
  • This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!: Quite a few of her battle cries. She's fond of the B-word in conversation as well.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Even after recruitment, she remains a barely contained ball of homicidal rage. She can grow out of it eventually.
  • Tomboyish Name Though in the third game, Liara reveals that her real birth name is Jennifer.
  • Tomboy with a Girly Streak: She enjoys reading and writing poetry in her spare time. Her romance shows this off more though. As her interest grows in Paragon Shepard, her voice changes from rough and masculine to a gentler, caring tone.
    (First conversation)
    Shepard: I should go.
    Jack: Yep.
    (After dropping hints of romance)
    Shepard: I should go.
    Jack: Take care!
  • Tomboyish Ponytail: Sports one in Mass Effect 3.
  • Took a Level in Cheerfulness: She becomes much happier in 3 after her Heel–Face Turn.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: A bit in 2, much more if romanced. Quite a bit in 3, where she's become a full-fledged Mama Bear and Badass Teacher who has left her Ax-Crazy nature behind. The Citadel DLC takes it even further, showing her to now have a pet biotic varren named Eezo that she got from a rescue group who she is extremely affectionate towards (and the parallels to her own life she is completely oblivious about). She also no longer wants to kill Miranda.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: Within the game, all you're told is that you're picking up a dangerous biotic named Jack; it's left as a surprise that she's a female until you see her the first time. The surprise is completely ruined by the fact that the character was introduced in promotional material prior to the game's release, including a personal character trailer. Although her name is only given as "Subject Zero" in this material, enough detail is given about how she's recruited that the only way her sex can come as a surprise is if the player goes into the game completely blind.
  • Transhuman: Possibly one of the most powerful human biotic yet. To wit, her power level is equal to an asari matriarch whose been through Training from Hell to become The Dreaded Knight Errant.
  • Trauma Button: Cerberus in general. But surrendering to them again is an even bigger one. Going for the Renegade response when they try to "persuade" the Grissom Academy students to give in has Jack snarl at Rodriguez to take a good, long look at her Cerberus-inflicted surgical scars.
  • Troll: She was banned from the Citadel News Net forums for excessive and repeated swearing, derogatory comments, inflammatory comments, and circumventing work-safe filters. She lasted 15 minutes in an online poker community before being banned for the same reasons.
    • She also gets vanned a lot. You are actually supposed to get her out of the proverbial space van in her recruit mission.
  • Tsundere: If Shepard coaxes her out of her hostility and helps her find some personal closure, she displays a softer and more vulnerable side.
  • Tyke-Bomb: The Shadow Broker's dossier indicates she was actually taken by Cerberus shortly after birth. Her mother was convinced the child had died from horrible element zero-induced seizures.
  • The Unfettered: Gets better in 3.
  • Unflinching Walk: The Big Damn Kiss with a romanced Shepard as a mech explodes during the Citadel DLC.
  • Ungrateful Bitch: In her recruitment mission, Shepard not only frees her, but saves her by shooting a Blue Suns trooper just before he shot Jack. Her response is to loudly insult Shepard.
    Shepard: This ship's going down in flames. I've got the only way out. I'm offering to take you with me. And you're arguing.
  • Unreliable Narrator: She wasn't in the best position to figure out just what was going on in the Teltin facility.
  • Unskilled, but Strong: She is skilled in throwing out various biotic techniques, but is one of the few squadmates in the series to lack formal military or paramilitary training of any kind (outside of the experimentation and abuse she endured as a child) meaning she can get quite easily taken down if outmaneuvered by enemies, both in and out of gameplay. Her very first scene showcases this quite well: she tears through three YMIR Mechs with one super-charged-up biotic blast at the beginning of the mission, but near the end drops her guard and would have been killed by a surprise attack from a single mook if not for a quick Stab the Scorpion moment on Shepard's part.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: With Miranda in the Citadel DLC, for given value of "best buds".
  • Wall Bang Her: Kasumi will advise a Renegade!Shepard who had sex with Jack:
    Kasumi: You might want to dial down Jack's biotic implants before you hook up with her again. I doubt Cerberus could afford to build another Normandy.
  • We Can Rule Together: In her first conversation with Shepard, she suggests the two of them team up to take over the Normandy and pirate other ships in order to conquer the universe as partners in crime.
  • What Beautiful Eyes!: Her big brown eyes with their expertly groomed lashes are gorgeous, even more so due to how wild and feral the rest of her body looks. They're easily her most striking feature during dialogue cutscenes despite of her many tattoos and her behaviour. The only other character in the whole game that can hold a candle to her in that department is Samara.
  • What Is This Thing You Call "Love"?: Downplayed, but still present. Jack doesn't understand what real love actually is, only understanding that people have sex to get what they want. She questions why a romancing Shepard doesn't just do it with her and is confused when he wants to bond with her. She eventually realizes her true feelings for him if Shepard remains faithful to pursuing a true romance with her.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: In the third game, she punches Shepard in the face, saying that Shepard should never have trusted Cerberus. If you romanced her, it turns into Anger Born of Worry, as she punches Shepard for turning themself in after the events of Arrival.
  • What Would X Do?: If she survives the second game and you make it to Grissom Academy in time in the third, you'll find her teaching a batch of young biotics and defending them from Cerberus. She even admits that some of Shepard's leadership rubbed off on her, what with "all those damn speeches."
  • When She Smiles: If romanced successfully by Paragon Shepard, she finally shows real happiness. Not a Slasher Smile, but a genuine smile. She also smiles when taking about her students before she scowls Mama Bear style that if anyone tries to screw with them...
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Because seriously — after a life of physical torture, emotional, and sexual abuse, Jack really deserves a little bit of happiness. And a Shepard hug.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are: How Paragon Shepard prompts her Heel–Face Turn.
  • You Need to Get Laid: Inverted; see Sex Equals Love above.
  • Your Makeup Is Running: During her romance scene.

    Jacob Taylor
Somebody's got to take down the bad guys. Cerberus keeps that line, I'm on their side.
"Jacob is way too nice a guy for the number of ways he knows how to kill people."
Joker's description

Voiced by: Adam Lazarre-White

A biotic and former marine who joined Cerberus to protect humanity, although he dislikes their extreme methods. He first appeared as the protagonist of the iPhone game Mass Effect Galaxy. He is a romance option for a female Shepard.

  • Absence Makes the Heart Go Yonder: He and Dr. Brynn Cole are together in 3 whether or not you romanced him.
  • Anti-Hero: Either a Knight in Sour Armor or Pragmatic Hero.
  • Ascended Meme: Jacob's ripped appearance during his romance scene with Shepard in 2 became something of an in-joke with the fandom. His files in the Shadow Broker DLC contained his insane workout routine and then by the Citadel DLC in 3, he can get in a push-up competition with Vega, and then the morning after the party Shepard will wakeup to find Jack and Jacob engaged in a tense morning workout.
  • The Atoner: In 3 for his time with Cerberus.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: One of the most non-confrontational, baggage-deprived guys on your squad, but check out his loyalty mission's Renegade ending for what he's capable of when pushed.
  • Black Dude Dies First: Potentially. He does volunteer for an assignment he's not geared towards, but it's possible to have already lost up to three people at that point. It really comes down to the player.
  • Broken Pedestal: His father.
  • Brutal Honesty: Similar to Ashley, Jacob is fairly direct with his opinions when asked. This will extend to Shepard as well.
    The Illusive Man: Jacob's never fully trusted me, but he's always been honest about it.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Was pretty pissed to find out what his father had been doing for the past 10 years.
  • Canon Immigrant: From Mass Effect Galaxy.
  • Character Witness: If he survives into 3, he convinces Brynn Cole to trust Shepard. Without him, Shepard has a slightly harder time convincing her they're not with Cerberus and out to kill her people.
  • Chick Magnet: He's had a past history with Miranda, Kasumi totally digs him, and he can possibly romance a Female Shepard. Continues into the third game, where he has a new girlfriend regardless of whether he was with Shepard in the previous game or not.
    • Even the Guys Want Him: If both were romanced in the previous games, Kaidan subtly hints that he finds Jacob attractive.
  • Crutch Character: Jacob's ability layouts favor two specific niches; his incendiary ammo (which can be upgraded to Squad at max, giving the whole party access to it) helps to deal with Armored enemies, which are everywhere on Omega, and pull, which can be used to set up Biotic Explosions. Later in the game you get to recruit other characters (or unlock the powers yourself) reducing Jacob's utility.
  • Deadpan Snarker: He has his moments, particularly in the Citadel DLC where he effortlessly trades banter with Shepard and ribs them quite a bit.
  • Demoted to Extra: Went from being the main character of Mass Effect Galaxy to a party member in Mass Effect 2 to an NPC in an optional mission in Mass Effect 3.
  • Derailing Love Interests: In 3, if you previously romanced him, he's already moved on to another woman he plans to settle down with.
  • Desperately Looking for a Purpose in Life: Several characters in 2 peg him as being uncertain about what he really wants to do with his life. By the time of 3, he's decided being with Cole is what he wants.
  • Determinator: Early in his mission in 3, Jacob gets shot in the stomach protecting some Ex-Cerberus Scientists. While he gets briefly treated, Jacob continues to power through the mission while injured.
    Shepard: You should get that wound looked at.
    Jacob: I'm good. I mean, I will.
  • Disappeared Dad: For 10 years and counting... at least, until his loyalty mission.
  • Dogged Nice Guy: Inverted — female Shepard has to work to get him to open up to the possibility of a romance.
  • Don't You Dare Pity Me!: He doesn't want anyone thinking of him as a "baggage guy" or trying to "figure me out". You can actually convince him to break off the romance if you keep pushing him.
    Jacob: Even if you were right, how small would my problems be if you could 'fix' them with grad-school psych and a crying jag?
  • Disappointed by the Motive: In his loyalty mission, Jacob isn't disappointed as he is outraged over the fact that his father spent 10 years on a remote planet, indulging in what he calls "a juvenile fantasy."
  • Everyone Has Standards: Dislikes mercenaries and assassins, which causes some initial friction when Thane comes aboard.
  • Expert Consultant: He refuses reinstatement in the Alliance Marines after being rescued on Gellix, feeling his time with Cerberus disqualifies him. Instead he becomes their consultant on Cerberus tactics.
  • Female Gaze: There's a point early in the romance in which the camera seems to switch to Shepard's POV, and pans up from his groin to his face.
  • Forgot About His Powers: A relatively minor example in 3: He still handles guns well when Cerberus attacks the defectors' safehouse, but apparently completely forgets he has biotic powers, specifically Barrier, which would have prevented him from receiving the wound that puts him out of action for most of the mission. In fact, he never once discusses being a biotic at all until the party in Citadel, where it might get brought up depending on whether the party is noisy or quiet.
  • Form-Fitting Wardrobe: Almost to the same degree as Miranda.
  • The Generic Guy: One of the most straightforward party members with the least amount of baggage. The Shadow Brokers files later reveal that this is his speculation on why Jacob was specifically recruited by the Illusive Man to join the squad.
  • The Heart: He and Miranda serve as the foils/voice-of-reason towards Shepard. Jacob is the paragon-voice point, supporting actions that are morally right but risky.
  • Hero of Another Story: Literally, with Mass Effect Galaxy. This put him in the rare position of a previous player character stuck as second-fiddle to another one.
  • Hidden Depths: Apparently he's good at arcade games if the Citadel DLC is anything to go by.
  • Hypocrite: Despite acting as a hired gun himself, Jacob hates assassins and doesn't hesitate to make his feelings known to Thane.
  • I Can't Believe a Guy Like You Would Notice Me: He seems rather surprised when female Shepard tries to start a romance with him, but eventually runs with it.
  • I Have No Son!: Inverted. He disowns his father after discovering what he did.
    Jacob: I don't know who you are, because you're no father that I remember.
  • I'll Pretend I Didn't Hear That: When Grunt starts talking about how appetizing the smell of burning plague victims is.
  • Informed Attractiveness: Depicted as being a Chick Magnet, but is an extremely unpopular choice for romance amongst players.
  • Insecure Love Interest: With both Shepard and Miranda, he doesn't believe he's good enough for them.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Implies this towards Miranda. "She... requires a better man than I."
  • Jerkass Ball:
    • He's openly hostile toward Thane when the guy joins the ship. Unlike the conflicts between Jack and Miranda, or Tali and Legion, Thane isn't confrontational towards him. Jacob just really hates assassins.
    • Also happens if you romanced him in 2, as he winds up becoming the only love interest in the entire series to cheat on Shepard. And while he'll acknowledge that his actions are wrong, he's still not particularly apologetic about it. Alleviated a bit if confronted about this in the Citadel DLC, as he'll give a more sincere apology and make his guilt more known.
  • Jerkass to One: While reserved, he's still polite and friendly to the other members of the squad. With Thane however, he doesn't hesitate to make his dislike known.
  • Knight in Sour Armor: He's generally a nice guy, but displays a lot of cynicism regarding the Alliance and Citadel governments after the events of Mass Effect Galaxy which led him to join Cerberus in disgust. Not that he's altogether fond of them, either.
    "Saved the Citadel, but... what's the saying? A good deed's like pissing in dark pants. Warm feeling, but no one notices."
  • The Knights Who Say "Squee!": He's a bit of a Shepard Fanboy.
  • The Lancer: A position he shares with Garrus and Miranda, hence why he and they are the only ideal candidates for leading the fireteams on the Suicide Mission.
  • Leave Behind a Pistol: At the end of his loyalty mission, the Renegade conclusion is to give a gun to his father to kill himself rather than face a court-martial or be killed by males driven to violence by the local flora.
  • Magic Knight: Both a capable soldier and a powerful biotic.
  • Man Hug: How he assures Shepard he's ready to go post-loyalty mission.
    Jacob: I'm good, Shepard! Ready for anything. We live, we'll get loud, spill some drinks on the Citadel!
  • Military Maverick: He left the Alliance because he couldn't handle all the Obstructive Bureaucrats. Having said that, he also gets the prize for the other half of the trope: of all the party members, he holds himself to the strongest level of military behavior, and is the only person on the ship aside from Kelly (and a loyal Miranda, once if not romanced) who actually salutes Shepard.
  • Mind over Matter: Jacob is the closest Shepard's squad gets to an average human biotic.
  • Mr. Exposition: Early in 2. Justified because he's the only person around Shepard can talk to, and Shep's been dead for two years.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Why, hello there, Mr. Unnecessary In Camera Focus Shirt Removal Ripped Guy. His abs are rendered with more detail than some character's faces. Shadow Broker info shows that he's earned those abs with an insane workout schedule. His taut ass is also prominent in some shots (the same camera angle as Miranda's Ass Cam, no less).
  • Nice Guy: One of the nicest members of Cerberus Shepard meets.
    • This trope becomes downplayed in the last game if you had romanced him before, as Jacob is revealed to have cheated on Shepard, which he only passively apologizes for. The Citadel DLC helps bring him closer to this trope though where he can make a stronger effort rebuild bridges with his ex.
  • Not in This for Your Revolution: He doesn't care for Cerberus's agenda or their insanely dodgy ideas. He's with them because at the moment, they're doing something about the Collector abductions.
  • Oblivious to Love: Not only does Shepard pretty much have to explicitly state her interest in him for it to register, but, by all accounts, he also doesn't seem to realize that Kasumi wants to jump his bones. Of course, since she's a downloadable character, he has no dialogue related to her so it's hard to tell.
  • Only Sane Man: The Illusive Man placed him on Shepard's team for relative emotional stability as much as skill.
  • Overshadowed by Awesome: Never commented on, but while Jacob is an excellent soldier, he's easily outclassed by every other squadmate in terms of exceptional feats.
  • Platonic Life-Partners: With Miranda and a Female Shepard who befriends him but doesn't romance him.
  • Playing with Fire: Aside from Grunt and Shepard themselves, he's the only one with Incendiary Ammo.
  • Precision F-Strike: An "S-Strike", to be more accurate. Shortly after the cutscene where Shepard releases Jack from cryo, as the squad enters a wrecked room with a few Blue Suns enemies fighting off escaped prisoners, Jacob will blurt out "Holy shit!" in face of all the chaos and destruction.
  • Privateer: A former member of the Corsairs, a black ops unit that the Alliance could disavow knowledge of if they were caught.
  • Properly Paranoid: Can be closed off and guarded, Shepard having to do some prodding just to get him to talk, but if called on it he apologizes, saying it's a requirement working with Cerberus.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: The red to Miranda's blue.
  • Remember the New Guy?: He makes a few passing references to having fought the Geth on Eden Prime, but he's neither seen nor mentioned in Mass Effect 1, despite Shepard's squad having cleared the entire op zone.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: Bring him along to the Derelict Reaper and you'll learn that he hasn't gotten over Eden Prime as much you initially thought. During the Citadel party, he'll mention that he still has nightmares about the Collector base.
  • The Stoic: He tends to express less emotion than most of the characters.
  • That Man Is Dead: His opinion of Ronald Taylor; no matter how the mission plays out, you'll hear some variation of it. "I've already mourned the man he used to be."
  • Token Good Teammate: Jacob is nowhere near as shady as most Cerberus operatives are, and he knows it. More importantly, so does the Illusive Man; Jacob was placed aboard the Normandy specifically as a stabilizing element.. and to make Cerberus seem more trustworthy.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: In 3, if romanced previously he is shown to have cheated on Shepard with Dr. Cole in the six months she was incarcerated. Even he admits he was a bastard for doing so if Shepard chooses to call him on it (though in a fairly casual manner).
  • Transhuman: Par for the course when one is able to project mass effect fields from your body.
  • Unknown Rival: Jacob actively tries to get a rise out of Thane, for no obvious reason. Somewhat humorously, Jacob claims to be loyal to "more than his next paycheck," despite both missions Thane undertakes during 2 being pro-bono. Thane remains unbothered by his behavior and does nothing to provoke Jacob in return.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: He does a good job of not showing it, though.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: It's downplayed, but he'll show discomfort if you go out of your way to be vindictive (even if the "victim" is an intel trader who once sent Jacob into an ambush). Played for laughs in the Citadel DLC; pick James's side in the "physique vs biotics" argument, and he'll call it the first questionable decision he's ever seen you make. Keep in mind, Jacob is the most physically fit member of the Normandy aside from James, since Shadow Broker reports show he does strenuous work like 1000 ab crunches a day.
  • What You Are in the Dark: His backstory is full of this. He doesn't mind so much.
    Jacob: Good deed's like pissing yourself in dark pants. Warm feeling, but no one notices.
  • Working with the Ex: In his words, his previous work with Miranda "got a little close — then it got really far apart." They're still on good terms, and she gives him the plot hook for his character mission to keep a promise. If he could only remember which promise...
    • And in 3, with Shepard, if you romanced him in the last game.
  • You Don't Look Like You: Looks completely different in Galaxy.

    Kasumi Goto
I'm the best thief in the galaxy, not the most famous. Need to watch my step to keep it that way.
"I like Kasumi, but why do I feel like I need to check the Citadel for parts she may have pawned?"
Joker's description

Voiced by: Kym Lane (credited as Kym Hoy)

A Classy Cat-Burglar who is available in the Kasumi - Stolen Memory DLC pack for Xbox 360 & PC, and included on disc for PlayStation 3. She is so skilled that few are aware that she even exists.

  • Affectionate Nickname: She calls Shepard "Shep."
  • Ambiguously Bi: She deeply loved Keiji, and spies on Jacob while he's working out, but she also makes some admiring comments about Miranda's body, and stares rather openly at female Shepard's cleavage during her loyalty mission. This is taken further in Citadel, where she offers to record Miranda and Jack "working out their sexual tension" (though she does that to a lot of the crew, like Tali, for the ME equivalent of YouTube hits) and roots through Shepard's underwear drawer, regardless of the commander's gender.
  • Animal Motif: It's very understated, but Kasumi resembles a bird with her cloak. It's only accentuated when leaping with pigeons flying around her onto Hock's gunship.
  • Anti-Hero: Despite being a shameless career kleptomaniac, she was willing to place herself in severe danger to protect a young artist purely on principle. She has a caring side, often showing concern for the rest of the squad. Of course, given that you have a squad of mercs, terrorists, Knights Templars and berserkers, her thieving seems pretty benign in comparison.
    • In Mass Effect 3, she helps the salarian Spectre agent assigned to hunt her down stop an indoctrinated hanar diplomat from dooming his entire species.
    • In the Citadel DLC, she's robbing a casino and intends to give the loot to the war refugees.
  • Ascended Fangirl: In-universe; describes herself as a fan of Shepard when she first meets them.
  • Backstab: Her signature ability, called Shadow Strike. Less of an actual Backstab, but more "bop people with the omni-tool".
  • Blade Enthusiast: You never see her using them in-game, but she gets very...enthused over a selection of knives on Tuchanka, and contemplates "borrowing" them sometime later.
  • Calling Card: In her early career, she left a rose in place of what she stole. Her partner eventually made her realize how unproductive this is for a thief.
  • The Caper: Her activity of choice. Naturally, her loyalty mission is one.
  • Covert Pervert:
    • She admits to using her cloak in order to spy on Jacob while he's working out.
    • Given her rather accurate comments about whoever Shepard chose to romance, it's entirely possible she might have been secretly watching during their romance scene. Case in point — her comment after Shepard sleeps with Miranda:
      Kasumi: Oh, Shepard. The engine room? Really? Down there where Tali works? Okay, I gotta ask... just how genetically modified is she? Because -— wow.
    • In the Citadel DLC for 3, she can be found during the party checking Shepard's drawers to find out what kind of underwear they wear. Apparently she does this with everyone. She spends the whole party reminiscing about Jacob's crunches, admiring James's muscles, and offering to record Jack and Miranda working out their "sexual tension". The only "covert" part is her turning invisible again before they can react.
      • Javik will chuckle it's cute that Kasumi thinks he can't see her.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Wears mostly black but is in fact one of the nicest and friendliest of all the party members.
  • Deadpan Snarker
    • On Korlus, regarding Rana Thanoptis:
      Kasumi: She seems nice... in a mad scientist ethics-for-sale kind of way.
    • On the Citadel:
      Kasumi: They're really selling the "geth did it" message. I bet you can't even say "Reapers" without inciting a panic. [airquote gesture] "Reapers!"
  • Demoted to Extra: While most of the Mass Effect 2 squadmates have smaller roles in 3, Zaeed and Kasumi suffer the most from it, likely due to being DLC characters. At the very least, having both of them keeps you from choosing between war assets.
  • Does Not Like Spam: The Citadel DLC reveals that she's slightly lactose-intolerant, having mistaken the milk in Shep's fridge to be made of soy.note 
    "I'm not really lactose-intolerant. I just don't put up with lactose's stupid drama."
  • Downloadable Content: She does not appear in the vanilla game at all.
  • Eating the Eye Candy: Kasumi certainly appreciates Jacob.
    Kasumi: [Ab] crunches. Lots of crunches.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Unlike the other squad members, who meet you face to face, Kasumi insists on talking to you through a hacked Citadel advertisement. She then reveals she's been watching the whole time, and leans over a railing above Shepard to introduce herself in person.
  • Face Framed in Shadow: Aside from the glint of her eyes and occasionally, like in the above picture, enough light to tell she looks normal under the hood, we never see the top half of her face.
  • Faking the Dead: In Mass Effect 3, after helping you (and another Spectre who's trying to arrest her), she "activates an explosive failsafe" on a terminal and collapses in a bloody heap. The Spectre is fooled, but Shepard sees right through it. A good way to introduce the new Decoy ability.
  • Fangirl: "Good to finally meet you, Commander Shepard. Kasumi Goto. I'm a fan."
  • Friend to All Children: She's a nice person in general, but she seems pretty fond of children in particular — the quickest way to get on her bad side is to injure or traumatize a child. One of her anecdotes involves a rare wholly charitable act, which was to rescue a child from slavery, and seeing what Jack and other biotic children went through on Pragia is enough to reduce her to tears.
  • The Gambling Addict: The only time she's not sneaking around at the party is if you host a card game, where she'll finally settle down and join Liara and James for a hand of poker.
  • Genki Girl: Despite being a master thief, she's very enthusiastic and cheerful.
  • Glass Cannon: She's excellent at incapacitating enemies up close, but she has low health and shields while her main ability often puts her in dangerous situations. Very inconvenient especially on her loyalty mission, where she is your only squadmate.
  • Gossipy Hens: If Shepard talks to her on the Normandy, she gossips about the other crewmembers and talks about rumors.
  • Highly Visible Ninja: In her loyalty mission, she strolls right up to Hock's estate in her Spy Catsuit, not even bothering to take her hood down, and seems surprised when Hock turns her away. She then uses her invisibility to get into the building anyway.
  • Hikikomori: If Keiji's graybox was kept and the Synthesis ending was not chosen, Kasumi spends the rest of her days as a shut-in reliving Keiji's memories over and over.
  • Hyper-Awareness: While this is probably more likely due to her stealth skills, Kasumi is one of two Normandy passenger who would know Morinth was posing as Samara, if Samara is killed in her loyalty mission.
  • Hypocritical Humor: During the Hock heist, she notes that his password, "Peruggia", refers to Vincenzo Peruggia, the man who stole the Mona Lisa back in the 1880's. The Shadow Broker DLC reveals that she has also stolen the Mona Lisa, but is offering it for sale. As well as the Koh-i-Noor Diamond and a number of other alien artifacts that are presumably as valuable.
  • In the Hood: Kasumi wears a hood at all times so no one can ever really see her face.
  • Invisibility: Uses the same invisibility device as the player Infiltrator.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: She has a crush on Jacob, but will support Fem!Shep if she decides to romance him. Dump him though and you get this.
    You dumped Jacob? I know you have a galaxy to save, but you have SEEN Jacob. Right?
  • It's All About Me: Shades of this in 3 where she resents Shepard's recruiting her for the Suicide Mission and reacts quite hostile when they intend to recruit her for the war effort (something that is important to save the entire galaxy, no less). Taken further if Shepard chose to preserve Keiji's Graybox, stating she would rather spend her remaining time with Keiji's memories, whereas if it's destroyed she'll give a more self-depressive reasoning by noting a thief like her wouldn't be any good with the Reapers (which is justifiable, since everything of theirs has a tendency to indoctrinate people). While she does agree to help the Crucible project in the end, the promise of being allowed to steal some expensive tech for herself was probably a main reason for that.
  • Just a Machine: Subtle but present.
    Kasumi: Sometimes [EDI] seems like a person, but when it comes down to it, I can't get past her being a computer.

    Kasumi: (on the heretics) Killed or remade, what's the difference? They're only synthetics. Just fancy security mechs.
  • Just Like Robin Hood: In "Citadel", Shepard can walk in on her about to pull a heist on the Silver Coast Casino. She's not doing it for the money or the fun. She plans on giving the loot to refugees, since she feels that they need it more than the Casino owners. Also, if she becomes a war asset, it's all but stated that she assists by stealing valuable components from Cerberus and giving them to the scientists on the Crucible.
  • Killed Off for Real: If you didn't go on her loyalty mission at all, her death's not fake. Shepard simply looks on and then walks away. Of course, maybe she's faking her death towards Shepard too, but she certainly doesn't join your list of war assets.
  • Kleptomaniac Hero: One quality she definitely shares with Shepard. Shepard can convince her to help with building the Crucible in 3 by playing on her kleptomania, saying after the job is done, there will be plenty of expensive tech that won't be missed; Kasumi is especially pleased.
  • Kleptomaniac Hero Found Underwear: Literally. You can catch her snooping through Shepard's intimates during the party in Anderson's apartment!
  • Lampshade Hanging: When commenting on female Shepard's romance with Garrus, she notes that "a lot of people want to see (them) together". She also lampshades the Turian Councilor's infamous "we have dismissed that claim" moment.
  • Le Parkour: Briefly shows off some moves in her loyalty mission.
  • The Lost Lenore: She never completely gets over Keiji's death. It actually gets worse in ME3 if you allowed her to keep the greybox. And then proceeds to get much, much better if you choose the Synthesis ending, as Keiji's greybox is affected and he returns to life.
  • Lovable Rogue: She's very endearing for a self-admitted kleptomaniac.
  • Magikarp Power: She starts out very weak. With the right allocation of skill points, she becomes a devastating Glass Cannon.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • Kasumi is a Japanese name that means simply "mist". KASUMI is also the name of a cipher used in electronic security.
    • The Japanese word "goto", the same word as her surname and which is pronounced mostly the same, also means "robber" or "robbery."
  • Meet Cute: When examining one of the paintings in her quarters, she'll tell you how she acquired it. She was hired to steal it, and when she went to take it, it had already been stolen. As she was leaving, she saw another thief with the painting, chased him down and tackled him. The other thief was Keiji, and he and Kasumi ended up as partners in crime as well as lovers. Neither of their clients ever did get the painting, because they kept it as a memento.
  • Moving Beyond Bereavement: When first introduced, is revealed to be mourning for Keiji Okuda; as such, her loyalty mission is a heist mission to steal back Keiji's graybox from his murderer, ostensibly for the secret that got him killed. Once Kasumi finally makes off with the prize, it becomes clear that she also wants the graybox for the memories of their time together... but then Keiji's final message advises her to delete the contents so that the secret he learned won't endanger her as well, a reveal that leaves Kasumi overwhelmed with grief for the first time in the story. Shepard then has a choice between advising her to abide by Keiji's last wish or to keep the graybox; in the case of the latter, Kasumi will become obsessed with reliving the memories and degenerate into a recluse, while in the case of the former, she will gradually be able to move on.
  • Nerf: Her "Shadow Strike" ability, which was basically "teleporting behind an enemy and knocking him down hard", got changed into the "Tactical Cloak" ability in the Citadel DLC.
  • Never Bareheaded: She never lowers her hood, and even the upper part of her face is usually framed in shadow.
  • Nice Girl: Minus the whole "stealing everything in sight" thing, Kasumi is one of the most openly friendly members of your crew. She spends the entire party in Citadel messing with the rest of the crew. She's far more lighthearted and fun than Jack being a nasty Troll, making Kasumi this.
  • The Nicknamer: She calls Shepard 'Shep' on a variety of occasions and designates the Illusive Man as 'Mr. Illusive.'
  • Not Me This Time: If you set off the scanners on the Citadel on your first visit with her in your party.
    Kasumi: I swear to God, I didn't touch anything.
  • Not in This for Your Revolution: In 3, she's not interested in putting her life on the line to fight the Reapers. Her mind can be changed by simply stating she doesn't need to be on the front lines — her computer skills are a big enough asset, and Cerberus facilities are more vulnerable targets to her predations than the Reapers... that and there is also a lot on the Crucible for her to steal.
  • Odd Friendship: As a Spectre, Shepard technically is a galactic lawman, while Kasumi is a galactic master-thief.
  • Optional Party Member: As a DLC character. In the Legendary Edition, the DLC comes installed anyway, but Kazumi isn't required to progress in the game.
  • Outlaw Couple: With her former partner, Keiji.
  • Perky Goth: Her outfit is of a design normally associated with dark, brooding characters, but she's actually usually pretty cheerful and playful.
  • The Pollyanna: She always reflects that things could be worse... even when trapped inside a derelict Reaper with dozens of husks that's slowly crashing into a star. Hey, at least it's not full of rats!
    • But take her with you on Jack's loyalty mission, and the thought of children being experimented on horrifies her beyond words.
  • Phantom Thief: She's one of the galaxy's best thieves/hackers, but has no criminal record. On her loyalty mission, Kasumi even says that no one knows what she looks like.
  • Playful Hacker:
    • She greets Shepard by taking over one of the Citadel's advertising terminals. Her hacking skills are actually on-par with both Legion and Tali.
    • If Shepard ignores her, she has half a dozen humorous comments from being a credit agency for help with collector agents to the offer of a sweet Japanese girl, before getting mad if Shepard doesn't bite.
    • She even starts helping the Spectre sent to arrest her with one of his investigations just because.
    • For that matter she plays around with this at the party in Citadel, from imitating Jacob doing crunches to helping him win a push up contest against James to raiding Shepard's underwear drawer.
    • When Shepard bumps into her in the Silver Coast Casino in Citadel, she casually hacks several Quasar machines to give big payouts to the players, just because she can.
  • Recruiting the Criminal: Cerberus seeks her out to use her skills against the Collectors.
  • Shipper on Deck: Shipper on the Port Observation Deck, to be exact. Kasumi is one of the more emotionally intelligent squadmates.
  • Shown Their Work: Throughout the party segment of the Citadel DLC there's a Running Gag about Kasumi's lactose intolerance. Kasumi is one of few characters in Mass Effect of explicitly Japanese ancestry. It just so happens ethnically Japanese people have some of the highest rates of lactose intolerance in the world at 95%.
  • The Smart Guy: Along with Tali and Legion, she's an ideal choice for the Tech Expert during the suicide mission.
  • The Sneaky Guy/Stealth Expert: "Now you see me..."
  • Spy Catsuit: Her outfit is as form-fitting as Miranda's. She even lampshades it by commenting that one of the Cerberus Security guys keeps watching her; she's used to being eyeballed by security, but they're usually watching her face or her hands.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Her special ability involves this.
    Kasumi: Now you see me...
  • Trademark Favorite Food: She loves ramen, and regrets not having stolen her grandmother's recipe.
  • Unrequited Love: She has a crush on Jacob, even by the time of 3, where he is expecting a child by Dr. Brynn Cole.
  • Unscrupulous Hero: She's no kind of evil, but she is a thief and a rather selfish individual, with little interest in putting her neck on the line for anyone else. She joins Shepard in 2 to get allies for her own loyalty mission, and in 3, tries to Opt Out of joining the war against the Reapers because it's really not her kind of job.
  • What the Hell, Player?: Ignore Kasumi on the Citadel when she's pretending to be a station advertisement, and she'll drop the Spy Speak and call Shepard out to meet with her already, dammit.
  • Worthy Opponent:
    • She considers Spectre Jondum Bau one, and, in fact, forwarded the information on the possibly indoctrinated hanar diplomat to him, claiming the galaxy needs more men like him. Even as he's trying to arrest her.
      Kasumi: Nobody's perfect.
    • The feeling's mutual — Jondum openly admires her.
      Jondum Bau: Her intelligence and skill are almost salarian.

    Miranda Lawson
I have every respect for your abilities, Shepard. It's your motivations that concern me.
"I would never say anything against Miranda. And expect to survive the reprisal."
Joker's description

A human biotic and tech specialist, "born" on Earth. She eventually ran from her demanding father, who genetically engineered her for perfection, and joined Cerberus, who won her loyalty by offering her protection. She became the director of the "Lazarus Project", tasked with resurrecting Shepard after the Commander's death. She is a romance option for a male Shepard.

  • Abusive Parents: Let's just say Daddy is worse than what she says. And what she says ain't positive about Mr. Lawson.
  • The Ace: A noteworthy example, what with being genetically engineered to the summit of human perfection. She doesn't seem to have a problem with mentioning it from time to time. It's also Deconstructed through conversations. She suffers from an inferiority complex caused by having all her physical and intellectual abilities hand-tailored from birth, which causes her to feel that she can't take credit for any of her accomplishments on her own merit. Even more so, because she can't help but compare herself to the aforementioned Commander Shepard, who she sees as having accomplished everything they've done without being genetically engineered.
  • Ace Pilot: She adds "squadron commander" to her already voluminous resumé in 3, though we never see it. According to the Shadow Broker terminal, she and her fellow ex-Cerberus defectors procure private fighters and begin using them to strike Cerberus targets.
  • Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene: In her loyalty mission where she debates whether or not to talk to her sister.
  • Action Girl: Designed to be, indeed. Those biotics probably didn't come cheap. Especially since, officially, humanity had no idea what biotics were at the time.
  • Always Someone Better: If you choose to earn her friendship, she reveals she feels somewhat inferior to Shepard. She was designed to be perfect and easily accomplish impossible tasks she is set. Shepard is just a regular person but somehow manages to succeed in doing impossible tasks anyway and often completes them with results beyond what she could have done. It's also implied that she feels a bit jealous of how much faith the Illusive Man places in Shepard.
  • Anti-Hero: For most of 2 she's veering into (and occasionally entering) He Who Fights Monsters territory and is generally both a Knight Templar and Good Is Not Nice. From the end of 2 onward though she becomes more of a Classical Anti-Hero. She has no Kick the Dog moments, her entire quest arc in 3 is about her trying to protect her sister from her father, and along the way, she tries to save refugees of all races from a husk facility masquerading as a refuge.
  • Arch-Enemy: Jack sees her this way, complete with an The Only One Allowed to Defeat You mentality. This reaches its peak during a catfight that Shepard has to head off, possibly also losing the loyalty of one or the other. Fortunately, as of the Citadel DLC, they've smoothed things over a bit.
    Jack: She'll survive. I hate to see her die before I get the chance to filet her myself!
  • Archnemesis Dad: The reason she joined Cerberus in the first place was to gain protection from her father. Her dad actually had close Cerberus ties before this, but the Illusive Man valued her abilities over his resources. Until the third game, that is. Besides, she's left Cerberus by that point (dead or alive).
  • The Atoner: In 3, for her work with Cerberus and other things. To the point that she apologizes to Shepard for wanting to implant them with a control chip, even though the Illusive Man stopped her from going through with it.
  • Awesome Aussie: By extension of being voiced by and face-modeled after one.
  • Badass Boast: Early in 2.
    Miranda: Worried about my qualifications? I can crush a mech with my biotics or blow its head off from a hundred yards. Take your pick.
  • Badass Bookworm: A very capable combatant and extremely intelligent as well, having led the Lazarus Project to bring someone back from the dead.
  • The Baroness: Sexpot variety, albeit a much less evil example than most.
  • Barrier Warrior: Citadel replaces Slam with the redesigned Reave.
  • Beauty Equals Goodness: Played with. She's incredibly beautiful and while, initially, not the most morally inclined member of Shepard's crew, she's far from evil and is also one of the better members of Cerberus.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: In Mass Effect 3, after she gets the crap beaten out of her by Kai Leng, she doesn't appear to have any visible wounds on her body aside from a few scratches on her face. This is especially weird if she actually dies from her wounds. Then again, she easily could've had severe internal injuries from blunt force trauma.
  • Because You Can Cope: If you lose her loyalty by siding with Jack, you can regain it by saying that you did it because she's more understanding than Jack is.
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: Paragon Shepard can cause her to resign from Cerberus, likely due to Shepard being the first person with authority over her to actually ask what she wants, not attempt to control her, and seeks her friendship with no ulterior motive for doing so. Even if that doesn't come to pass, Miranda will remain loyal to Shepard after resigning from Cerberus offscreen.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: With a male Renegade Shepard, their First Kiss pretty much comes about after he mercilessly teases and taunts her about her insecurities and is generally rude and challenging, which seems to be pushing all her buttons... with Miranda being flabbergasted and asking "Okay, what the hell was that?!" afterwards.
  • Beneath the Mask: Under the cocky, arrogant, and ruthless demeanor lies an extremely insecure woman with a hell of an inferiority complex, major daddy issues, and a surprisingly good heart that needs to be pushed in the right direction.
  • Big Sister Instinct: She will go the ends of the galaxy and risk everything to protect Oriana.
  • Birds of a Feather: Shepard can use this to argue for or against a relationship with her.
    Shepard: This won't work, Miranda. We're Too Much Alike.
  • Bond One-Liner:
    • Once Shepard escapes the Lazarus facility, their first encounter with Miranda has her killing Wilson in cold blood.
      Wilson: Miranda? But you're—
      [Miranda kills him]
      Miranda: Dead?
    • Then there's her loyalty mission:
      Miranda: Goodbye Niket, I'm going to miss you...
      Miranda:...figuratively speaking.
    • In the third game, at the end of the Sanctuary mission if she's still alive:
      Henry Lawson: [after releasing Oriana] Alright, take her. But I want out alive, deal?
      [Miranda uses her biotics to throw him out the window]
      Miranda: No deal.
  • Boobs of Steel: A deadly Action Girl with sizeable assets, which is lampshaded by the crew of the Normandy and Jack.
  • Brainy Brunette: She was the head scientist of the Lazarus Project.
  • Broken Ace: Beautiful, intelligent, competent, and consumed with self-doubt and self-loathing due to being genetically engineered by her father to be be absolutely perfect and capable of accomplishing anything. This causes her to view anything she accomplishes to be a result of her father's money and planning, and believes that only her mistakes are truly hers.
  • Broken Bird: See Freudian Excuse.
  • Broken Pedestal: To the Illusive Man and Cerberus at the end of 2 although they in turn seem to have become this to her, if her dialogue when Shepard destroys the Collector Base is any indication.
  • Buxom Is Better: As the engineers put it...
    Daniels: I've got green across the board. The forward tanks are buoyant and elevated.
    Donnelly: Are ya talking about the Normandy or Miranda?
    Daniels: I'm talking about the one that's covered and protected, not bouncing in the breeze.
    • Even Jack concurs in the Citadel DLC. The first genuine compliment she gives? "I still really hate you, but you have fantastic tits." Miranda laughs and accepts the compliment.
  • Canon Immigrant: From the Mass Effect Galaxy iPhone game and the Mass Effect Redemption comic. Notably, in the latter, she did not yet look like Yvonne Strahovski.
  • The Chains of Commanding: Miranda states that her enhancements only mean her bad decisions will be more harmful. It becomes Foreshadowing if you follow her advice on certain things, like who to use for the biotic shell.
  • Character Development:
    • Compare the first conversation you have with her after first meeting with the Illusive Man in 2 to the last one you have with her on the Citadel in 3. By the time you meet her in Sanctuary, she's not much of an Ice Queen any longer...
    • Her breakdown in 3 over the guilt of wanting to install a control chip in Shepard's brain, speaks volumes over how far she's come, as she realises that her attempt to control Shepard almost turned her into her father. Best summed up in this line:
      Miranda: Nobody's perfect.
  • Character Tic: Scratching at her collarbone when idle (and due to the way she's animated, only ever when she's standing up).
  • Cloning Blues: See Ultimate Life Form below, and add the fact that A: She is a female clone of her father and B: Her father is a massive jerk. She can get over it provided with enough time, and even trolls Shepard during Citadel by asking them if he really is the original Shepard.
    Miranda: I wasn't even the first one he made. I was only the first one he kept.
  • Combat Stilettos: Wears them for no explicable reason. Her DLC outfit removes them.
  • Come with Me If You Want to Live: When she and Shepard have their first real meeting, she has the only way off the Lazarus research station.
  • Conflicting Loyalty: Begins to show a little after her Loyalty Mission, particularly with a Paragon Shepard. While she has been extremely loyal to Cerberus for her entire adult life and a Paragon Shepard opposes Cerberus ideals in almost every way, Shepard also risked a great deal to help her keep her sister away from their father, without any strings attached. In the end, when she is forced to choose between Cerberus and Shepard, she chooses Shepard without hesitation.
  • Continuity Snarl: A minor but notable one. She states that she was genetically engineered to be the peak of human biotic ability, but according to the Mass Effect official timeline she was born a year before the Singapore incident that (several years later) led to humanity discovering biotics. It's possible that her biotics were added via secondary exposure later in life (as Commander Shepard's canonically are), but that still doesn't fit with her statements of having been genetically engineered for it.
  • Control Freak: One of her main character flaws. She initially wanted to implant Shepard with a Control Chip, but was vetoed by the Illusive Man, since it could impair Shepard's abilities and the idea was to bring them back exactly as they were. She later regrets this, since she realizes that her attempt to control Shepard almost made her be just like her father.
    • Oriana's grateful email to Shepard after they rescued her during Miranda's loyalty mission has a secondary postscript addressed to Miranda, where it turns out that Oriana is both perfectly aware of, and subsequently orders, Miranda to stop reading Shepard's private mail!
  • Cool Big Sis: To her (genetically identical) little sister Oriana Lawson, occasional Control Freak moments notwithstanding. Especially if she allows herself to be known to Oriana.
  • Covert Pervert: If a male Shepard flirts with her after her loyalty mission, Miranda seemingly goes to hug him, only to instead awkwardly touch his chest. Turns out she was trying to cop a feel off of the commander's muscles.
  • Crazy-Prepared: She plants a tracer on Kai Leng, giving Shepard the exact location of the Illusive Man's base on Cronus Station, just because she had a feeling it'd be useful. Shepard is both relieved and grateful — before that, they were grasping at straws.
  • Cultured Badass: Enjoys classical music, particularly the Danish composer Carl Nielsen.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Not as much as many of the other characters, but she has her moments, particularly when flirting with Shepard if romanced.
  • Death of the Hypotenuse: If you romanced her in 2 but break up with her in 3, she will die regardless of the help you give her.
  • Defector from Decadence: Paragon Shepard can cause her to resign from Cerberus. Also part of Niket's argument against letting Miranda take Oriana with her on her loyalty mission — when she accuses him of being bought by her father, he calls her out on the luxuries she enjoyed before she left.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Becomes notably less unpleasant as the story progresses — at least to Shepard. She's also generally nicer to Jacob as well, due to their past relationship. By 3, she's completely defrosted and is one of the nicest people in the entire game.
  • Determinator: Miranda's determination is what quietly wins her the respect of several crew members despite her pro-Cerberus beliefs. She resolves to protect her sister Oriana from their father, and will survive being shot if she serves as the 2nd fire team leader even if she is not loyal.
  • Designer Babies: She was specifically designed by her father as part of his "dynasty" and really, really wishes she hadn't been.
  • Did Not See That Coming: Said almost verbatim after Niket betrays her during her loyalty mission.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: One of her possible death scenes in Mass Effect 3 has her dying in Shepard's arms, reconciling with Oriana, and making Shepard promise to keep fighting, no matter what the cost. This earns her a name drop when Shepard kills Kai Leng.
  • The Dragon: To The Illusive Man, at least until the end of the second game. She's been replaced by both Eva Corénote  and Kai Leng as of Mass Effect 3.
    • This role of hers is also referenced by Shepard's clone in the Citadel DLC, with regards to Maya Brooks.
    Mysterious Figure: You had Miranda, I have her. Mine has more bite.
  • Dying Declaration of Love: Gives one to a romanced Shepard if she's fatally shot by Henry in 3 before dying mid-kiss with him.
  • Easily Forgiven: Provided the player fulfills the very specific set of circumstances that let her live to the end. Despite loyally serving Cerberus for years as TIM's right-hand woman while participating in or at least being complicit in various atrocities (such as the raid on the quarian fleet, which resulted in several civilian deaths in a failed attempt to kidnap Gillian Grayson), she gets off completely scot-free in the third game. No one bothers to arrest her, and she even gets to work on the Crucible without anyone batting an eyelid. This is particularly odd when ex-Cerberus personnel with a much more strenuous connection to the group get thrown in prison in the same game for just being members (such as Kenneth and Daniels). Then again, she does spend most of the game evading the Alliance, and by the time she's recruited, no one has the luxury to be settling scores.
    • A specific example: when Miranda apologizes for attempting to insert a control chip into Shepard's brain and effectively make them a slave for Cerberus, the dialogue options available are "I forgive you" and a slightly more brusque version of "I forgive you". While most versions of Shepard would be completely justified to throw that apology back in her face and more, this example is particularly noticeable as these are the only responses available even if Shepard up to this point has been a short-tempered renegade who has shot much less deserving people just for annoying them. The closest Shepard can come to rebuking her for this is refusing to grant her access to Alliance resources when she asks for them later (with the stated reasoning having nothing to do with this or her earlier deeds), which indirectly leads to her death.
  • Establishing Character Moment: The first time she's actually spoken to, she guns down Wilson for betraying her and follows it up with a sarcastic quip. She then calmly counters any arguments Shepard makes, and prioritizes getting Shepard off the station rather than risk waiting for (very unlikely) survivors.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Despite being a Cerberus supporter who is quick to disavow their atrocities, she regards Kai Leng as a Psycho for Hire in the comics.
  • Face Palm: Her reaction when Shepard suggests that she sleep with Jack and get over their sexual tension.
  • Fantastic Racism: Averted, despite her status as a Cerberus agent. She specifically states, and the game backs up, that she's more pro-human than anti-alien and also laments how so many people join Cerberus for no other reason than xenophobia. She also has a certain respect for the asari.
  • Fatal Flaw: Pride. She's very confident in her abilities and thinks of herself as a master at reading people. Her inability to comprehend that people will react other than the way she believes they will often screws her. She also seems to have the mindset of handing out as little information as possible, with complete disregard for how others will react to her doing so.
    • Can become a literal example of a Fatal Flaw in the third game. She chooses to go after her father alone, despite Shepard pointing out that whatever leads she has could be much better followed-up if she at least told the Normandy team about them. She also asks Shepard to give her access to classified Alliance resources, without actually giving Shepard information or accepting further help. As a result, she proceeds to Sanctuary alone where she most likely dies (without a very specific set of criteria determining her survival). Even in the best case scenario, she ends up heavily injured at the hands of Kai Leng, only survives because Shepard shows up just in time by sheer coincidence, and still can potentially be shot to death in her injured state by her father if Shepard doesn't choose the right dialogue options.
  • Faustian Rebellion: Paragon Shepard can push her into performing one against the Illusive Man. Also part of her backstory before joining Cerberus.
  • Femme Fatale: Beautiful, seductive, and utterly ruthless at first.
  • Foil: To Ashley. One is extremely loyal to the Alliance, the other Cerberus. One is fiery but can be made to show a softer side, the other starts out as an Ice Queen who defrosts. One is very close with her sisters, the other prefers to observe her from afar. Not to mention that in 3, Ashley now resembles Miranda a little more with let-down hair and a more form fitting outfit.
    • Miranda is also one to Jack. Miranda is calculating and measured, believes in following orders, keeps an ice queen demeanour and is fiercely loyal to Cerberus. Jack is brash and reckless, has very little respect for authority and hates Cerberus' guts. Mass Effect 3 showcases their respective character growths and once again they're opposites. Miranda has become a kind woman, but if you romanced her and decide to break up with her, she absolutely shatters, as while she used to have Cerberus around as a form of family, she is now pretty much alone (her sister aside, who is in danger). Meanwhile Jack has become a lot kinder too, but if you break up with her she's completely fine with it, as she has a new family in her students.
  • Form-Fitting Wardrobe: Although this seems to be the go with almost all types of wardrobe in the 'verse, including many of the armors and regardless of sex. Played straight that since her outfit is done to make it look leather-like, not to mention quite shiny, it gives the illusion of more skin-tight (her buttcleft is more obviously modelled than any other clothed character) and, say, alluring. That said, it's never explained just why she dresses like this, especially, since it looks like it'd have a hard time protecting against gunfire, she doesn't really have a reason not to just dress like the countless other Cerberus scientists you meet throughout the game.
  • Freudian Excuse: Much of her behavior makes more sense in light of her loyalty mission and the Shadow Broker dossier. Before meeting Shepard, only three people have never betrayed her to her knowledge: a childhood friend, the Illusive Man, and Jacob. By the end of the game, it's entirely likely that only Jacob and the Illusive Man remain from that list. With the Shadow Broker dossier, it's clear that part of her affection for her sister comes from being unable to have children of her own, and despite being in a dating service, she ruthlessly cuts off one candidate who makes the mistake of trying to be interested in more than just sex. Since she cannot bear children, she's less interested in romance. Though these are played more subtly than most Freudian Excuse examples, once they're revealed, most of Miranda's personality is clearly defined by these.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: "Nobody" is an overstatement, but her hardline pro-Cerberus stance does alienate her from the others somewhat. This is why someone always argues against making her the fire team leader. Even Garrus, who is otherwise friendly and accepting of most people, distrusts her and shakes his head in agreement with Jack's assertion that "nobody wants to take orders from you" (or does it himself in Jack's absence). Jacob has known her the longest, Samara respects her determination (Tali also admits in 3 that she respected Miranda), and Kasumi seems to like her (though she likes everybody). After she takes a level in kindness in 3, this changes, noticeably in "Citadel".
  • Good Is Not Nice: As cold, bitter, bitingly critical of others, and occasionally ruthless as Miranda can be sometimes, she is still a good person deep down. She genuinely believes that Cerberus is pro-human and only wants to help further humanity's agenda.
  • Good Is Not Soft: After Character Development the "not nice" part disappears and the "good" part becomes more prominent. She becomes genuinely friendly and caring, expresses regret over what she wanted to do to Shepard, attempts to avoid bothering Shepard for help, and upon discovering Cerberus has set up essentially a Nazi death camp makes efforts to warn people away. Then she kills her father, who was responsible for said death camp. Even in the second game her Establishing Character Moment is her watching over Shepard with a genuinely warm smile, trying to first help them make a full recovery then get to safety, then upon seeing Wilson flashes a snarl at him and executes him.
  • Guide Dang It!: Keeping her alive in 3 game requires meeting a very specific set of criteria. Shepard needs to: have gained her loyalty in 2, have warned her about Kai Leng by reading his dossier, give her access to Alliance resources, and/or Charm her father during the standoff. Additionally, Shepard must not break up with her if he romanced her in 2, as this will cause her to die no matter what. note 
  • Heel–Face Door-Slam: Possibility in the third game. She finally sees the error of her ways, condemns Cerberus, then tries to repent by warning people about them and helping to take down one of the facilities where they kidnap people to make husks... then she gets stabbed by Kai Leng.
    • Also possible in the second game. If she's in the final stretch of the suicide mission and the base is destroyed, she will agree with Shepard and resign from Cerberus on the spot. But if she is not loyal, she will die in the subsequent escape.
  • Heel–Face Turn: She's one of the Illusive Man's most loyal agents, yet Paragon Shepard can end up causing her to resign from Cerberus and hang up on the Illusive Man, basically delivering the verbal equivalent of flipping him off to his face. The third game reveals that he did not take this well. In 3, she takes this even further. She uncovers, on her own, the Cerberus husk facility on Horizon, and after it's shut down, she finally reintegrates into the Systems Alliance, providing intelligence which allows them to start striking at clandestine facilities all over the Galaxy. She even leaves the boardroom, forms her own fighter squadron, and starts attacking Cerberus targets herself, according to the Shadow Broker's intel.
  • Hero of Another Story: While Shepard is building alliances in 3, they can meet with Miranda a few times, where she discusses a mission she's currently on involving her sister and father, and later Cerberus. Their stories eventually coincide, however.
  • Hidden Heart of Gold: It appears that she's a cold professional to everyone she meets until she spends time around them and decides that she can trust them. At the start of the game, she'll shut down any attempt at personal conversation, but in her office aboard the Normandy she's more open with Shepard. This is most obvious regarding Jack. If Shepard asks her about what Cerberus did, she'll say without hesitation that it was a mistake and was rightfully shut down as soon as the Illusive Man found out. But when Jack calls her out on it directly, she'll refuse to apologize.
  • Horrible Judge of Character: She claims to be an "excellent judge of character" but it's clear with her views on Cerberus and in particular the Illusive Man that this isn't always the case. She gets her eyes opened at the end of 2.
  • Hypocrisy Nod: She apologizes in 3 for intending to put a control chip into Shepard during the Lazarus project, noting that it was a hypocritical plan for someone who has had her life defined by her struggle with her control freak father.
  • Ice Queen: Explicitly called that by a soon-to-be-former Cerberus employee. Though, oddly enough, also a Perpetual Smiler.
  • Immortality Begins at Twenty: This can be inferred, given that the genetically-identical Oriana was raised by civilians without raising any eyebrows.
  • I'm Not Here to Make Friends: Says this to Shepard in one of their first conversations. She ends up quite surprised when this is what actually happens, enough that it overrides her initial loyalty to Cerberus.
  • Informed Flaw: She's considered an optimal choice for a Fireteam Leader in the Suicide Mission despite Jack stating that no one would follow her orders. Granted, that might just be Jack.
  • Ink-Suit Actor: Albeit with dyed hair.
  • Insistent Terminology: If Shepard brings up Cerberus' messing around with the thorian, rachni and husks back in 1, Miranda states that wasn't an attempt at making an army, just breeding shock-troops.
  • Insufferable Genius: At first, although dialog shows her pride is largely a security mechanism she uses to deal with her insecurity about being a Designer Baby.
  • Jack-of-All-Stats:
    • As a Sentinel-style "Cerberus Officer", she's probably the closest Shepard's team has to this, being somewhat capable in combat, a decent biotic, and good at using tech to disable enemies. Her passive skill also provides bonuses to the entire squad's health and weapon damage, making her a good tactical choice for any player class or squad makeup.
    • With a bit of Glass Cannon as well. She has low health (lower than Garrus's) and all three of her skills are geared towards offence.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: At the beginning of 2, she refuses to wait around for any survivors of the lab, which she justifies on the ground that A: they're expendable, and B: if there were any survivors left, they'd be there already (since they are at the shuttlebay). Jacob even admits that as cold as she's being, she's right.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: In 2. She mellows out the more time she spends with Shepard, and will do what she can to keep those she cares about safe at any cost.
  • Kick the Dog: She has a few moments.
    • In her very first appearance, if you try to get her to go back and save survivors in the overrun Cerberus lab, she'll scold you for being shortsighted and refer to all of the workers as "expendable".
    • On Freedom's Progress, she'll recommend taking Veetor for "interrogation" (possibly including Cold-Blooded Torture) rather than letting Tali take him back for medical care. She'll back down if Shepard refuses, but if Shepard agrees, Veetor will show up later in Tali's loyalty mission obviously traumatized from the interrogation (which didn't include explicit mutilation but did feature Cerberus kidnapping him and forcibly pumping him full of drugs to keep him "stable", which turned him into even more of a mental wreck). Such is his state that he can now no longer function without a doctor beside him at all times, and he screams and shrinks back in fear at the mere sight of a human. Rather than apologize or admit any wrongdoing on her part, Miranda proceeds to immediately dodge responsibility before attempting to justify and defend Cerberus's interrogation methods.
    • She's less than sympathetic about the bad blood between the quarians and Cerberus, listing Cerberus' grievances against the quarians (including mass murder) as "nothing personal". Her expressing knowledge and complicity about said raid also heavily implies she knew that the whole purpose of the raid was to kidnap and torture Gillian Grayson (as explained in the tie-in novel Mass Effect: Ascension), a child who was hiding with the quarians because Cerberus had previously attempted to use her as a biotic weapon and pumped her full of enough drugs that she had to be hospitalized multiple times. Granted, she also claims Prazza's account is "not how she would have explained it" suggesting she may have been fed false information, but either way it's callous, since all the dead quarians and even the tortured and traumatized human child were apparently seen by her as acceptable losses.
    • Her fight with Jack. Confrontations between Party Members tend to be small Kick the Dog moments for all parties involved, even though they do have pretty justifiable reasons for being mad. What makes her fight with Jack in particular stand out though is the line "Clearly, you were a mistake". Ouch. And while it's true that Jack was looking for a fight there, Miranda's response is still cold. She will admit to Shepard in private that she believes what was done to Jack was wrong, but she never admits it to Jack herself.
      • Even the fact that her loyalty to Shepard is at stake in said conflict seems to be this, considering her mission had nothing to do with her allegiance to Cerberus, and instead was a deeply personal favor.
    • Right after the Normandy gets attacked by the Collectors, and Joker, the sole survivor of the attack watches all his friends be dragged away by various cosmic horrors, the first thing she does upon returning to the ship is chew Joker out for losing the crew and unshackling EDI (which saved the ship). Keep in mind that it was her idea for all of Shepard's squad members to leave the ship beforehand, leaving the rest of the crew defenseless.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch:
    • She mercilessly shoots Wilson.
    • Killing her father in Mass Effect 3.
  • Killed Off for Real: Miranda can be killed in the Suicide Mission in 2, or by Kai Leng in 3. In addition, her death is the only way Oriana can die as well; she and her father will both fall to their deaths when Shepard doesn't take the Renegade interrupt to shoot Oriana in the knee.
  • Knight Templar: When with Cerberus, though still quite light compared to others in the organization.
  • Knight Templar Big Brother: She keeps extremely detailed records on all her sister's potential boyfriends. Even her sister finds that a little creepy.
  • The Lad-ette: Not as much as Fem!Shep, but she also can't think of a single traditionally feminine interest to talk about when they try to act more normal.
  • Lady of Black Magic: The sci-fi equivalent of one as a Lady of War and biotic.
  • Lady of War: She's elegant, has a calm and cold demeanor, and prefers to use her more graceful biotics over firearms.
  • Lady in Red: In the Citadel DLC, she wears a red dress when she and Shepard head to the Silver Coast Casino for some fun.
  • The Lancer: She's Shepard's executive officer, although she shares the overarching Lancer role with Jacob and Garrus. Which is why Miranda is a good choice for Fire Team Leader during the suicide mission, just like both aforementioned squadmates.
  • Law of Inverse Fertility: According to Liara's files on her, she desperately wants a biological child of her own - sadly, though, she has a benign neoplasm that makes her completely incapable of becoming pregnant. It's subtly implied this was either yet another way Henry Lawson meant to control his daughter, or the "imperfection" that led to the creation of Oriana.
  • Like Father, Like Son: Subverted; they turn out to be very different people in the end. Both are highly talented scientists who use their intelligence to do the extraordinary. Miranda brings Shepard back to life, and Henry manages to control husks independently of the Reapers. However, while Miranda's only ethical quandary was her complicity in some of Cerberus's questionable schemes, and her desire to implant Shepard with a control chip (which she later regrets even considering) and she becomes a genuinely heroic person, Henry sacrifices thousands, if not millions of innocent people to indoctrination in order to make his breakthrough, which is by far the most heinous act Cerberus commits, and never regrets a thing. While Henry is obsessed with securing a lasting legacy of his own, Miranda can't even get beyond taking credit for anything she achieved all by herself.
  • Love Makes You Dumb: She acts pretty flustered if Shepard begins to romance her.
  • Mad Scientist's Beautiful Daughter: Henry Lawson created her to be perfect in every way, using his own DNA as a template, for reasons that had as much to do with satisfying his own ego as securing an heir for his dynasty. Naturally, Miranda had other plans.
  • Male Gaze: The in-game camera spends a lot of time focused on Miranda's rear, including at rather inappropriate times (one example occurs while she's asking for help regarding her sister — the dialogue wheel appears just as her rear end comes into focus). This got some ire from some fans which led to the scene in question to be modified in the Legendary Edition.
  • Mind over Matter: She has biotic powers. Not, however, on the same level as Jack and Samara; picking her for the biotic bubble will result in the death of one squadmate. Curiously, she's a year older than the biotics who were exposed in the original Singapore incident.
  • Mistreatment-Induced Betrayal: If the Collector Base was spared in 2, she remains with Cerberus, but is still on the run come 3, the Illusive Man having turned on her for no readily apparent reason.
  • Morality Chain:
    • A Paragon Shepard can become this to her.
    • Jacob also shares this role, being one of the few people that Miranda actually will listen to for advice.
  • Morality Pet: Her (much younger) twin sister, Oriana.
  • Ms. Fanservice:
  • Mutual Kill: One way for the standoff with her father to end is with Miranda killing him in order to save Oriana, but with him fatally shooting her in the process.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: She feels terrible guilt for even considering installing a control chip into Shepard and basically turning them into a mindless slave. Even more so as it is exactly what she tries to keep her father from doing to her and her sister, almost becoming just like him.
  • My Country, Right or Wrong: While Miranda doesn't agree with everything Cerberus does and acknowledges that they cross the line, she stays on with them anyway until the end of 2.
  • Narcissist: Inverted. She initially appears to be this, but upon getting to know her better, it turns out that she is in fact self-loathing and feeling that she does not deserve credit for her accomplishments. Part of her Character Development is learning to get over this.
  • Never a Self-Made Woman: Conversed by Miranda. She feels all her accomplishments were made possible by her father's genetic influence, and the only things she can take credit for are her mistakes. Of course, Shepard can tell her that she was the one who decided what to do with her gifts.
  • Nice Girl: In 3. She expresses regret over her attitude in 2 and is friendly towards Shepard (and the other party members in Citadel).
  • No True Scotsman: Those guys that tortured Jack? They're not really Cerberus, according to her. Neither were the guys who orchestrated the deaths of entire Alliance platoons. She stops using this trope by the third game though, as she has realized how wrong she was, and has dedicated herself to taking the organization down.
  • Noble Top Enforcer: When with Cerberus, though the "noble" part isn't immediately obvious.
  • Not So Stoic: Miranda's Ice Queen demeanor frequently crumbles throughout the course of the games, not the least of which would be during her loyalty mission, interactions with her sister, and her romance with Shepard.
  • Not What I Signed Up For: If she is present and Shepard elects to destroy the Collector Base, Miranda will defy the Illusive Man for this reason and support Shepard, resigning from Cerberus on the spot.
    • She will also show signs of drifting away from the organization if Shepard does preserve the Collector base, telling them that she had never questioned her loyalty to Cerberus until the Suicide Mission happened, and she even sounds a bit concerned about what Cerberus will do with the base.
  • Older Than They Look: Thanks to her genetic enhancements, she'll easily live to half again the age most humans will reach. By now, this is 150 — she's 35 right now.
  • Opposite-Sex Clone: Subverted. Her father intended her to be this, but she ended up becoming a very different person from him.
  • Overshadowed by Awesome: If befriended, she admits to feeling somewhat insecure around Shepard. She explains that because she was designed to be "perfect", all of her victories are simply products of genetic engineering that allows her to excel at everything. Shepard on the other hand, is simply a normal human being, who somehow manages to achieve the impossible due to sheer willpower, because that is who they are!
  • Parody Sue: Miranda was designed by her father to be perfect in every single way (looks, brains, social skills, biotics, etc.), using exclusively his own DNA as a form of wish fulfillment via Author Avatar (much like traditional Mary Sues). Miranda repeatedly asserts her authority and likes to take very active roles, even in instances where there's better options such as the biotic bubble. However, it's emphasized just how vain, narcissistic, and self-absorbed her father is to create Miranda with his own genes for this purpose. Miranda's "perfection" leaves her with a serious Inferiority Superiority Complex (in her own words, "The only thing I can take credit for are my failures"), and, while Miranda may have been designed to be perfect, the reality is that she's still going to fall short because all humans do. And often times, when she fails a task, the consequences tend to be extremely dire because of how much authority and responsibility is placed on Miranda for being perfect.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil: Many consider her shooting Wilson in cold blood to be pretty ruthless, but it should be remembered that he betrayed her and tried to kill her, Shepard, Jacob, and everyone else on the facility. He succeeded on the latter, too.
  • Perpetual Smiler: Though likely a case of Special Effects Failure, it's worth nothing that her default expression is noticeably happy. Even when gunning down a traitor early in the game, or laying into Joker after the Collectors invaded the Normandy, or when Shepard steps in when she fights Kai Leng. Even her battle quotes sound more like she's playing a game rather than fighting for her life. The Legendary Edition reduces her smile somewhat to look more natural.
  • Pet the Dog: To her credit, Miranda pets as many dogs as she kicks, especially when 3 comes around.
    • She happily answers any concerns Shepard has for her on the Normandy. After her loyalty mission, she apologizes to Shepard for her earlier Jerkass attitude towards them. If Shepard also stopped her from shooting Niket, she accepts that her trusting him wasn't so much of a bad thing, even if it backfired on her.
    • Her interactions (and general relationship with) her twin sister Oriana.
    • When asked by Shepard what she thought of Jack's torture at Cerberus' hands, she does not hesitate to say that it was without question a mistake. Of course, she also refuses to admit this to Jack herself and maintains that it wasn't really Cerberus.
    • If present when Tali makes clear her intentions to sabotage the suit of a volus who's being a racist Jerkass, Miranda, though viewing it as "juvenile" also says that it's "certainly deserved".
    • If Shepard does not romance anyone in 2, Miranda will tell Shepard before they go through the Omega-4 relay that it has been an honor to serve with them. She even salutes!
    • She'll mostly question Shepard choosing anyone but her to lead the second fire team, but does happily back down if Shepard picks Garrus, Jacob, Samara, or Zaeed.
    • She concludes on her own that keeping the Collector Base intact is a betrayal of the victims, and wholeheartedly supports a Paragon Shepard's decision to blow it to hell.
    • She apologizes to Shepard for wanting to put a control chip in their head and also says that she's always regretted it, realizing how close she came to becoming her father.
    • She warns people about her father's husk facility on Horizon and tries to save as many people as she can.
    • By Citadel, she seems to have mended her rift with Jack and is even capable of laughing, acknowledging that some of Jack's ribbing toward her is Actually Pretty Funny, and sharing a drink with her.
  • Platonic Life-Partners: With Jacob and a male Shepard who befriends her but doesn't romance her.
  • Playing with Fire: Citadel adds Incinerate to her power set.
  • Plot Armor: Miranda can only die during the suicide mission if she's disloyal and you bring her to the final boss fight, or if you get unlucky and she dies holding the line (she is the most likely to die besides the four squad members who have "low"-ranked defensive skills). If she is chosen as the second squad's commander, she will shrug off being shot, even if she's not loyal. This is mostly because she is depicted speaking in cutscenes at several points in the mission, as Shepard's second.
  • Poor Communication Kills: Her refusal to tell Shepard the details of her going after her father can lead to them refusing to give her access to Alliance resources. This will then lead to her own death.
  • Post-Victory Collapse: In 3, if she was fatally wounded fighting Kai Leng, then after she kills her father she collapses to the floor immediately after.
  • Raven Hair, Ivory Skin: She's much paler than most of the other inhabitants of The 'Verse, has jet-black hair, and is regarded as extraordinarily attractive. It helps that her default outfit is black and white.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: The blue to Jack and Jacob's red.
  • Redemption Equals Death: If she dies in 3.
  • Rule of Symbolism: A subtle case in conversations with her. As Shepard keeps talking with her, the setting of the conversation goes from sitting in front of her desk, sitting beside her desk, on a sofa further inside her room, to her sitting on her bed. The location correlates with how close Shepard is to her.
  • Sexy Walk: Natch. Even her idle pose looks like she just stopped in front of a catwalk.
  • Shock and Awe: Overload.
  • Self-Made Orphan: If she survives to the end of 3, she finally kills Henry Lawson along the way. Whether she lives past that depends on whether you warned her about Kai Leng, whether or not you charmed Henry, whether or not you gave her Alliance resources, and whether or not you romanced her and then broke up with her. Very much a Guide Dang It! situation.
  • Shoot the Dog: She and Jacob serve as the foils/voice-of-reason towards Shepard. Miranda is the renegade-voice point, supporting actions that are logical but ruthless.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Literally. She's done her share of high profile internet dating. Hidden logs reveal her turning down many high profile suitors for some surprising and... not so surprising reasons.
    • Has this relationship with a Paragon Male Shepard, if pursued.
  • Slap-Slap-Kiss: Her relationship with Renegade Shepard, if one is pursued.
  • Smug Super: Played straight then deconstructed and inverted.
  • Space Clothes: Except in her alternate appearance pack armor.
  • Spy Catsuit: Particularly her loyalty outfit. It is worth noting that the second appearance pack DLC takes pains to avert this; instead of form-fitting fabric and high heels, Miranda now wears armor very similar to the Medium armor from the first game, complete with combat boots and notably less emphasis on her curves. However, consider the fact that the Mass Effect 1 armors to which it emulates were still quite form-fitting.
  • Starcrossed Lovers/Dating Catwoman: Her romance with Paragon Shepard until she resigns from Cerberus. She and Shepard are the first one again in 3 due to not seeing each other much but still loving and remaining faithful to one another. The extended cut even has an image of Miranda looking out at the stars if she was romanced.
  • Stop Being Stereotypical: The only complaint she has about Cerberus at least in Mass Effect 2 is that too many people join it out of racism and xenophobia. She wants Cerberus to simply advance the human race: Nothing more and nothing less.
  • Sugar-and-Ice Personality: Miranda starts off as very cold and standoffish, and is called an Ice Queen by Wilson, but she warms up to Shepard considerably during the course of the game, especially if romanced. And of course there's the relationship she has with her sister, Oriana and also her good working relationship with Jacob, all of which suggest she is “sugar” to people who have gotten her trust, respect, and (possibly) love.
  • Take This Job and Shove It: If Miranda is with Shepard when he destroys the Collector Base, the Illusive Man will tell her to stop him. She'll coolly retort that he should consider this her resignation.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: With Jack in 2 and also Paragon Shepard initially.
  • Tempting Fate: She introduces herself by saying she's "an excellent judge of character" and that she's "never wrong". Between her loyalty mission and the suicide mission, the universe seems to be keen on proving she's, in fact, far from perfect.
    • Although her opinions in the suicide mission zig-zag between being this trope and subverting it. She's wrong about being a good candidate to hold up the biotic barrier, but she turns out to be right about being a good candidate to lead the fire team both times, despite Jack's, Garrus', or Jacob's objection.
  • Thanks for the Mammary: In a very rare Gender Flip example, Miranda touches Male Shepard's muscular chest in a sudden rush of emotion. She actually seems to enjoy it.
  • This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!: If Shepard stops Miranda from killing Niket, he'll have a Heel–Face Turn, only to be killed in cold blood by Enyala. This earns an angry "You'll pay for that, BITCH!" exclamation from Miranda, giving her a blast of biotic energy.
  • Token Good Teammate: Of Cerberus, albeit not as much as Jacob and Kelly.
  • Too Clever by Half: As Miranda and her sister were Designer Babies engineered by their megalomaniacal Truly Single Parent to be Born Winners, Instant Expert TV Genius barely begins to describe her capabilities. Lawson drops in on Shepard's resurrection without any knowledge of the process and becomes the project's leader through sheer ability in less than a week. Of course, being unfamiliar with failure, she never sees her mistakes coming: her statement that "any biotic could be a Barrier Warrior" is technically true but without using either Jack or Samara will get an ally killed because only they aren't exhausted by the end and able to blast away Swarm and Collectors following them. She's actually cursed with being aware of this trope, resulting in an inferiority complex — she attributes all her successes to her father's design, and only takes credit for her failures.
    Shepard: Sounds like you were designed to be perfect.
    Miranda: Maybe, but I'm not. I'm still human. I do make mistakes. And when I do, the consequences are severe.
  • Took a Level in Kindness:
    • A bit by the end of 2, more so if romanced. A lot by the end of 3, where she tries to warn as many people on Horizon as she can about a Husk facility masquerading as a refugee camp, and goes to extraordinary lengths to save her sister.
    • Can even bury the hatchet with Jack in the Citadel DLC for 3... and not in her back!
  • Truly Single Parent: She doesn't have a mother. She was designed from her father's chromosomes mixed with a mishmash of female DNA.
  • Transhuman: Without the biotics, she may just qualify for "peak human". But glowing misty blue and smashing people to and fro against bulkheads with a flick of the wrist puts her in this trope.
  • Ultimate Lifeform: BioWare uses Miranda to explore the entire concept of the perfect human. She's unbelievably gorgeous, brilliant and skilled. She is those things because her father, an egotistical prick, designed her that way in a lab. Miranda is tortured by all of those gifts, seeing in them constant evidence of her father's influence. Other companions belittle her for being too perfect, and she laments that her engineered skills means she owns nothing about herself.
    Miranda: The only thing I can take credit for are my mistakes.
  • Undying Loyalty: Ultimately subverted in 2, where she resigns from Cerberus after at last realizing that they go too far. Eventually played straight with Shepard though, despite the initial tension between the two.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: With Jack in the Citadel DLC, for given value of "best buds". Neither of them would ever admit to liking each other, but neither seems too eager to seek out other company, either. Miranda even (albeit somewhat sarcastically) refers to her and Jack as being "the best of friends".
  • We Have Reserves: Her first Kick the Dog moment in a nutshell. Averted later during the Suicide Mission if anyone dies though. She sounds choked up when she tells Shepard that they have to keep moving and even Jack's death seems to sadden her.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: A bit of one when with Cerberus.
  • We Will Have Perfect Health in the Future: Miranda's projected lifespan is 50% longer than the already-enhanced human norm. She could conceivably hit her 200s.
  • What Is This Thing You Call "Love"?: Her romance with Shepard seems to suggest this, as if kissed she will say afterwards "what the hell was that?", and later, when struggling with her feelings for Shepard, confesses that she doesn't know why she feels the way she does for him, and attempts to rationalize it before Shepard convinces her that it's more.
    Miranda: What idiotic bunch of hormones thought that now would be a great time for love?
  • What You Are in the Dark: She never had any intention of making herself known to Oriana, in spite of the extraordinary lengths she's gone to protect her from their father. It takes some encouragement from Shepard to convince her otherwise.
    Shepard: She doesn't need any details, but would it really be so bad for her to know she has a sister who loves her?
  • Wide-Eyed Idealist: Concerning Cerberus she's almost as bad as Kelly. Her views of the group is extremely idealistic, and she even claims that the Illusive Man is humanity's best advocate, almost making one wonder just how aware she is of the atrocities Cerberus tends to commit. Fortunately she gets her eyes opened at the end of the second game.
    • Particularly notable is her claim that the Husks at the Cerberus facility you can shut down in 1 were "already dead"...except they were that way because Cerberus killed them all. Since Shepard knows this, it's unlikely Miranda was lying to them, suggesting she may have been lied to herself.
    • Possibly regarding the experiments on Pragia. It's very vague what the Teltin facility was hiding; it could have been the nature of the experiments, or it could have been something completely different. Miranda is quick to conclude that they were shut down on ethical standards when the IM learned the truth, but Jack isn't convinced. Given the IM's tendency to be extremely involved in every ongoing project, her scepticism that he wasn't aware they were experimenting on children is probably justified.
  • Working with the Ex: She headhunted Jacob for Cerberus, and it's suggested they had something at one point, but there's not much tension.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are: What Shepard can ultimately convince her of. Both in terms of her ability and morality.
    Shepard: Your spirit and personality are what make you great. It's what makes anyone great.
    Miranda: That's kind of you. I'm not sure I believe you, but thanks for saying it.

    Mordin Solus
Lots of ways to help people. Sometimes heal patients; sometimes execute dangerous people. Either way helps.
"No surprise, Mordin acts superior to everyone. Like he's got tenure at FU."
Joker's description

Voiced by: Michael Beattie (2), William Salyers (3)

Salarian doctor. Former member of salarian Special Tasks Group. Recruited by Shepard to combat Collector technology.

  • Catchphrase:
    • "X is/likely to be...problematic."
    • "Had to be me. Someone else might have gotten it wrong."
  • Celibate Hero: Inherent to salarian biology. Quite knowledgeable regardless.
  • Combat Medic: Technically. Performs medical research on ship, on ground Shepard provides in-game medic abilities.
  • Cool Old Guy: 30 years old. Salarian life expectancy forty. Roughly same age as Shepard. Find this amusing.
  • Crazy-Prepared: Ready to give The Talk for any kind of interspecies romance. Ran clinic on Omega — advice likely necessary there. Many species, many tastes.
  • Crisis of Faith: Studied many religions as means to atone. Looked for answers. Found questions. Declares Reincarnation popular with salarians. Deeply spiritual still. Shepard expresses surprise.
    Shepard: I didn't expect spirituality from you, Mordin.
    Mordin: Genophage modification project altered millions of lives. Then saw results. Ego, humility, juxtaposition. Frailty of life. Size of universe. Explored religions after work was completed. Different races. No answers. Many questions.
    Shepard: Sounds like you were trying to deal with a guilty conscience. The doctor who killed millions.
  • Cruel to Be Kind: Helped modify Krogan genophage after species adapted to original. Did so for the good of entire galaxy - including Krogan. Models suggested Krogan resurgence would result in deaths of thousands, and Krogan extinction. Modifying genophage only answer. Painfully aware of the contradictions in this argument. Resolving said contradictions a major part of character arc.
  • Cultured Badass: Believes culture needs art. Otherwise not culture. Actively fears Creative Sterility. Uses as evidence for Collectors not being... alive. No art, no expression. No expression, no soul. *sharp inhale* Also did Gilbert and Sullivan.
  • Dating Catwoman: Hinted at. Has history with crime boss Aria T'loak. Circumstances unclear, but open fondness of Mordin on her part remains. Wrote Self-Insert Fic about breaking Omega's only rule - in more ways than one.
  • Dead Guy Junior: If Wrex is krogan leader and Genophage cured, will suggest honoring Mordin's sacrifice by naming one of his children (maybe a girl) after him. Tone suggests lack of seriousness about endeavor.
  • Deadly Doctor:
    • Thought he was harmless, did you?
      Mordin: Advantage of being salarian. Turians, krogan, vorcha - all obvious threats. [sharp inhale] Never see me coming.
    • Subversion, actually. Has killed many times, but never with medicine (says so himself during loyalty mission). Shepard can challenge whether upgraded genophage killing with medicine or not. Likely asked himself same question in past. Paralysing nerve gas followed by lethal projectile to cranium is acceptable, however.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Found several surveillance bugs. Destroyed some. Returned expensive one to Miranda.
  • Death Faked for You: If Wrex and Eve dead, can be convinced to fake genophage cure and help with Crucible project. Wreav too dangerous as leader without Eve to stabilize him. Pretend to have died in explosion.
  • Dead Man Writing: From Citadel. In event of death, STG colleagues to deliver datapad to Shepard. Contains greatest hits. Hope Shepard finds them informative, amusing, educational...
  • Defiant to the End: If murdered by Shepard at end of third game, spends last moments crawling towards console to cure genophage.
  • Determinator: If Shepard forced to shoot him. Manages to crawl toward console despite lethal wound. Almost reaches console before collapsing. Makes it further than replacement if dead in second game.
  • Dirty Business: Guilt for actions major part of character.
  • Dying Moment of Awesome:
    • If deploying genophage cure, quietly hums Scientist Salarian while going about work. Facility collapsing around. *sharp inhale* ...Exhilarating.
    • Inverted if Shepard shoots in back. Crawl to workstation. Die before temperature change ruins cure. Senseless death. Even Shepard disgusted with self.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Recruited on Omega. Deduces Shepard's allegiance and intentions within seconds, if not told. Simple logic; process of elimination. Offers cure for plague - and new gun. Also dismisses entire mercenary squad as "minor" attack on clinic. Solid reasons for this.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: Third game, if Shepard sabotages genophage cure. Disappointed. Betrayed. Possibly subverted if Shepard changes mind at last minute. Also subverted if Wrex and Eve dead; can be convinced Wreav too dangerous to allow access to cure. Downplayed if Shepard honest about reasons for sabotage; decision understandable, if not acceptable.
  • Everyone Has Standards:
    • Hates unnecessary waste of life. Only kills problematic people. Always careful with medicine. Never carries out research on species capable of calculus unless subject volunteers. Protege... *sharp inhale* not so principled.
    • If taken on Jack loyalty mission, repeatedly disgusted by surroundings. Experimenting on children not acceptable.
  • Evilutionary Biologist: Downplayed. Involved in modification of genophage. Generally well-intentioned, regardless - even towards Krogan. Strong ethical guidelines. Ruthless when guidelines are breached.
    Mordin: No testing on species capable of calculus. Simple rule. Never broke it.
  • Expert Consultant: Found at Salarian Tasks Group facility on Sur'kesh despite having retired from STG. There as consultant on genophage, working for an actual cure since no one else has expertise, experience or motivation for it. Has to be him, someone else might get it wrong.
  • Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: Third game if Shepard sabotages genophage cure. Try to figure out why Shepard is delaying transmission of cure. Realize sabotage likely. Only plausible culprit... Shepard.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Stands tall and proud while Shroud exploding around him.
  • Faking the Dead: Third game. If Eve dead and Urdnot Wreav sole krogan leader, can be convinced krogan not yet ready for cure. Will disappear to work on Crucible. Shepard lets krogan believe everything went as planned.
  • Fire, Ice, Lightning:
  • The Fettered: Believes strongly in scientific ethics, refuses to experiment on sapient life.
  • Film Noir: Authored novel in this style. Protagonist, lone STG operative on a mission. Broke number one rule on Omega... in more ways than one. Semi-autobiographical? Leave up to audience to decide.
  • Frontier Doctor: Reminiscent. Omega resembles frontier setting. Limited resources, hostile factions, difficult for physician of lesser capability to practice. *sharp inhale* Missed working for operations with a budget.
  • Gibbering Genius: Dictates thought processes in real time. Avoids infinitives. Irrelevant if heard saying inconvenient thought out loud.
  • Glass Cannon: Three skills, purely offensive. Also low defence rating. Death during suicide mission likely. Preferable choice for escorting Chakwas and other crew members back to Normandy.
  • Good Is Not Soft: No hesitation in purging dangerous elements for greater good. Sees no contradiction in killing some to safeguard others. Genophage tests this mentality to the extreme.
  • Go Out with a Smile: Restored future of krogan species. Good reason to smile in face of death.
  • Headbutting Heroes: Previously part of squad under Captain Kirrahe to deliver genophage modifications. Numerous disagreements on mission parameters. Repeatedly called each other 'cloacas'. Earned respect by end of mission.
  • Heroic BSoD: Upon discovering pupil performed tests. Dangerous and reckless, even if misguided.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Third game, salarian sabotage to Shroud revealed. Stay behind to fix it. Die in the process. *sharp inhale* Conscience clear. Still... would like to have run tests on the seashells.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: Subverted. Insists this repeatedly during loyalty mission. Obviously trying to convince self, not companions.
    • Still resolute it was right action. Even against Shepard's best arguments. Invokes Grey-and-Gray Morality. Actions not unjustified.
    • Worth remembering alternative was genocide. "Save galaxy from krogan. Save krogan from galaxy."
    • Also made peace with self after mission. Mind clear. Hands washed. No guilt. Free to focus on task at hand.
    • Until sequel. True guilt revealed... and again overcome.
  • I'll Kill You!: If Maelon spared after loyalty mission, made plain former student not forgiven. Will kill if ever encountered again.
  • Insistent Terminology: Genophage sterility plague. Not murder.
  • Insufferable Genius: Some hints of this. For example, when joining Crucible in 3: "Exciting atmosphere, galaxy's most brilliant minds working together towards common goal. Read their solutions to engineering problems on the way over. Looking forward to correcting them in person."
  • Ironic Echo: If survived ME2, can die while curing genophage in ME3. Uses same lines about how others would have gotten it wrong.
  • Irony: For all claims of "It had to be me, someone else might have gotten it wrong" regarding Genophage, Padok Wix was able synthesize cure in case of death.
  • If It's You, It's Okay: No interest in Shepard romantically. If ever explored, Shepard optimal. Either sex. Ahem.
  • It's Personal: Deliberately invoked in order to anthropomorphize fight against Collectors and Reapers.
    Mordin: Hard to imagine galaxy. Too many people. Faceless. Statistics. Easy to depersonalize. Good when doing unpleasant work. For this fight, want personal connection. Can't anthropomorphize galaxy. But can think of favorite nephew. Fighting for him.
  • Keet: Described as being like hamster on caffeine. Salarian metabolism much faster than most other species', but fast even for salarians.
  • Kick the Dog: Questions Paragon Shepard's willingness to spare batarians who threatened assistant, sketchy asari neurospecialist as well. Second chances noble, not pragmatic, open possibilities for future betrayals. Correct about Rana Thanoptis. Should have killed her.
  • Killed Mid-Sentence: "I am the very model of a--" BOOM
  • Kill It with Ice: Uses omnitool to freeze enemies solid. Thaw quickly, but bodies fragile!
  • Kill It with Fire: Uses omnitool to incinerate enemies. Incredibly deadly. "Flammable! Or inflammable? Forget which. Doesn't matter!" (Same thing. Really doesn't matter.)
  • Lampshade Hanging:
    • Meeting Shepard for first time. Attempt to work out why Spectre is here. Renegade interrupt offered. If not taken Paragon interrupt suggested. On board Normandy third interrupt option available. [sharp inhale]. Allows Shepard to interrupt when heard enough.
    • Alternatively, can ignore interrupts. Made up for with hilarious scene:
      Shepard: Do you ever pause for breath?
      Mordin: Sorry. I'll... try... to... slow... down. No-no-no. Can't do it. No time.
  • Light Is Good: Wears white in keeping with doctoral nature. Also good. Help people. Cure genophage.
  • The Load: Second game. Primary contribution to Suicide Mission intellectual. At Collector Base, poor choice for vent shafts and fire team, even if loyal. Also poor defense value for rearguard. Best assigned to escort surviving Normandy crew to safety.
  • Mad Scientist: Not mad. Usually irritable. Sometimes affable.
  • Mad Scientist Laboratory: Granted personal lab on Normandy. Cerberus spared no expense. Removed by Alliance during Normandy retrofit. Pity. Medical Bay will have to suffice. Proves convenient by that time, however. After all, working on genophage cure.
  • Major General Song: "I am the very model of a scientist salarian."
  • The Matchmaker: Tries to hook Eve up with Garrus. Scars, intelligence, aggression. Would've made good match for Eve. Eve declined repeatedly.
  • Measuring the Marigolds: Planned to walk on beach, collect seashells on retirement. Shepard asserted would go crazy within hour. Amended plans to run tests on seashells.
  • Mercy Kill: View effort to defeat Collectors as this. Protheans gone, Collectors just final insult.
  • A Million Is a Statistic: Trope discussed. Galaxy too broad, too many people, too many variables. Impersonal. Can't fight for whole galaxy. Can picture favorite nephew; can fight for him.
  • Morally Ambiguous Doctorate: Good but conflicted. Did what had to do. Necessary, but still regrets.
  • Motor Mouth: Speaks too fast when met in Omega. Can be halted with renegade interrupt. Can attempt to slow down, but incapable.
  • Murder Is the Best Solution: Mission important. Talking takes too long. At least one way to help people.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Horrified by personal work on genophage. Still feel it had to be done.
  • My Greatest Failure: Treats work on genophage as this, though not failure, strictly speaking. Justifies it incessantly. Had to be done. No other option. Only correct and logical course of action...
    Mordin: I made a MISTAKE! Focused on big picture. Big picture made of little pictures. Too many variables!
  • My Sensors Indicate You Want to Tap That: Cross-species body language awkward; makes for easy misunderstandings. Movements of Shepard's lower eyelids suggestive by salarian standards. Good to clear air. Also identifies incumbent romantic relations between Shepard and love interests,; offers pertinent medical advice. Scandalized if Shepard views advice as being in jest.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: Some fans confused initially. Felt Fight For The Lost trailers implied Mordin Clint Eastwood style lone ranger. In game, quickly proven wrong.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero:
    • Narrowly averted. Had cure ready for Joker's Vrolik Syndrome. Luckily double checked in middle of night. Discovered that humans do not have two livers! *Sharp inhale* Would have caused liver failure. Problematic.
    • Paragon Shepard repeatedly insists this is the case with genophage modification project. Vehemently disagree! Had to be done!
  • Nightmare Fetishist:
    • Foremost expert in medicine and bioengineering in the galaxy. Knowledgeable of diseases, sexually transmitted or otherwise, of all major sapient races. Often muses about such diseases out loud. Also does experiments.
    • Intrigue at squad's potential survival on Horizon present even if part of squad.
  • Noodle Incident: Lethal proficiency with farming equipment. Never explained until discovery of Shadow Broker database; Skinny salarian doctor killed charging krogan by driving pitchfork through head. Disappoints fans, who imagined combine harvester.
  • No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup: Make no mistake. Brilliant scientist. Not perfect, though. Seeker swarm countermeasure developed hastily. Tested only on Horizon.
    Shepard: We're groundside. Mordin, you sure those armor upgrades will protect us from the seeker swarms?
    Mordin: Certainty impossible. But in limited numbers, should confuse detection, make us invisible to swarms. In theory.
    Squadmate: In theory?
    Mordin: Experimental technology. Only test is contact with seeker swarms. Look forward to seeing if you/we survive!
  • Odd Friendship:
    • With genophage-immune krogan female. Call her Eve. Part of reason wish to cure genophage.
    • Also eventually establishes one with Wrex. Is mourned by Wrex after dying for genophage cure.
      Wrex: (approvingly) You've got a quad on you, Doctor! Keep her safe.
  • Old Soldier: Elderly by salarian standards. Chronologically same age as Shepard. Find this amusing. Based partly on older Clint Eastwood, in fact.
  • Omnidisciplinary Scientist: Primary focus biomedical. Constantly forays into other sciences. Mechanical expertise surprising. He is the very model of a scientist salarian. One exception: limited experience with security systems. Assignment as Tech Specialist unwise.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: Pausing while speaking. Long, complete statements. Use of first-person pronouns. All likely indicators of serious topics.
    • If Genophage is to be cured, this dialogue between him and Shepard before they part ways for good:
      Shepard: I'm sorry, Mordin.
      Mordin: I'm not. Had to be me... Someone else might have gotten it wrong.
    • If genophage cure was to be sabotaged instead:
      Mordin: I made a mistake! note 
  • Pet the Dog: Loyalty mission. Packed with these moments. Notably absolutely horrified at dead female krogan test subject. States that species doesn't matter. Acknowledges work as a cause.
    Shepard: I didn't expect you to be disturbed by the sight of a dead krogan.
    Mordin: [surprised] What? Why? Because of genophage work? Irrelevant. No, causative.
  • The Professor: Nature of mission irrelevant. Know something about strange thing.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Dying while curing genophage only redemption for modifying it previously.
  • Retired Badass: Formerly served in special forces. Now doctor. Return to combat not a problem.
  • Retirony:
    • "Would have liked to run tests on the seashells."
    • In Extended Cut, if alive, spends final years finding the time to cure the genophage.
  • Sacrificial Lion: In third game. End of first story act, first major character to die. Clear sign no-one else safe. *inhale* No-one. If killed by Shepard, good sign of how far they have fallen.
  • Science Hero: Uses vast scientific knowledge to help Shepard against both Collectors and Reapers.
  • Seen It All: Has encountered much in the galaxy. Little surprise. Reaction to Javik: "Ah, a Prothean. Excellent."
  • Self-Demonstrating Article: Terse talker. Speaks in sentence fragments. Emulated in this character trope list.
  • Self-Insert Fic: Enjoys writing them.
    Mordin: Broke Omega's one rule, in more ways than one.note 
  • Sherlock Scan: Good at analysis. Displayed when first met Shepard. Deduces Cerberus affiliation even if not explicitly stated. Recognizes EDI as AI just as quickly.
  • Shipper on Deck: Ready to offer medical advice for Shepard and their romantic partner. Available to offer gels and instruction manuals for possible cross-species intercourse.
    • Admits worries about implications of Joker/EDI, however.
    • Knew that krogan females find scars attractive. Tried to set "Eve" up with Garrus Vakarian. Apparently she wasn't interested. Will do this even if Shepard in relationship with Garrus. Awkward.
  • Shoot the Dog:
    • Has no problem killing one person. To save ten others, of course. Even created new strain of genophage. Krogan adapted to previous one. Does feel regretful about the latter. Started clinic to atone. All life precious.
      Mordin: Lots of ways to help people. Sometimes heal patients; sometimes execute dangerous people. Either way helps.
    • Also at end of loyalty mission. Discover former STG agent curing genophage. Must be killed. Can be stopped with Paragon interrupt.
      Mordin: No! Not a murderer. Thank you, Shepard.
    • Possibly on receiving end in third game. If not convinced to go along with sabotage, Renegade Shepard forced to shoot him to stop genophage cure.
  • Silver Fox: In final decade of life. Considered attractive by salarian standards. Especially by other species. Receive come-ons constantly.
  • The Smart Guy: Runs tech lab. Cannot purchase upgrades without him aboard.
  • Sophisticated as Hell: Noted in Shadow Broker Dossier. Example adequate:
    "Specialist Solus suggests Commander Kirrahe has a foreign object in his cloacanote  [...] suggests that cloacal obstruction is in fact Kirrahe's cranium.note "
  • The Spock: Usually goes with more logical path. Belief in killing those who present themselves as threat. Deconstructed during Loyalty mission. Genophage involvement becomes source of conflict.
  • Squishy Wizard:
    • Skills quite useful in combat, but shields and health quite weak. Survival requires support.
    • Despite special forces training and career, implied to possess weakest combat capabilities of any of the ground team. Lowest combat score and survival priority of any loyal teammate in holding the line against the Collectors. Lower than even Jack and Tali, who both are specialized at fighting enemies other than Collectors. Escorted duty recommended. Alternately, take to final confrontation. Tech abilities effective against armored targets. Collector forces feature many armored opponents. If loyal, will definitely survive if taken with Shepard.
  • Strange-Syntax Speaker: Obviously. Speaks mainly in sentence fragments, never uses first-person pronouns. Possible defence mechanism to avoid taking responsibility for genophage enhancements - only breaks established pattern when admitting own mistakes.
  • Stupid Good: Third game, if Wrex and Eve dead. Blinded by need to atone for genophage enhancements. Unable to see threat Wreav would pose without genophage or Eve to keep in check unless Shepard provide wake-up call.
  • Suddenly Shouting: Third game. Rare loss of emotional control in regards to genophage enhancements.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: With Urdnot Wreav. Mutual dislike obvious. Cooperation necessity for curing Genophage. Payback acquired during tissue sample collection.
    Wreav: He failed to mention how he was gonna take his tissue sample. This ship doesn't have enough painkillers for where he cut me!
  • The Talk:
    • Shown here, on Interspecies Romance. Try not to "ingest". Offers for all romances. Promises to "probe" Jacob/Miranda. Cerberus could have bugs anywhere...
    • Third game takes this step further. Offers Joker advice on proposed robosexual liaison with EDI. All part of profession.
  • Technobabble: Constantly. Combines with Terse Talker, Motor Mouth. Some complain of difficulty understanding. Get doctorate! Have real conversation!
  • Terse Talker: Talks fast and short. First part natural to salarians. Second part peculiar to himself. Likes Techno Babble dialogue. Always Thinking Out Loud. Reading Self-Demonstrating Article right now. *sharp inhale* May help you understand.
  • Thinking Out Loud: Constantly. Annoying to krogan female in 3.
    Mordin: Who's that? Pilot? No. Synthesized voice. Simulated emotional inflections. Could it be... no. Maybe. Have to ask. Is that an AI?
  • Too Much Information: Gives scientific advice on interspecies sex before even asked. Provides helpful booklet of diagrams, exercises, inventive activities. Also advises against oral contact with Drell skin (may cause mild hallucinations) or ingestion of Turian tissue (may cause anaphylactic shock).
  • Underestimating Badassery: "Advantage of being salarian. Turians, krogan, vorcha, all obvious threats. Never see me coming."
  • Unwanted Harem:
    • Found attractive by many species. Bemused at this. Saved many lives. May be desire for Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex with savior.
    • "If wanted to try human, would try [Shepard]." Shepard's sex irrelevant.
  • Utility Party Member: No non-combat gameplay skills in series, but still fits role aboard Normandy. Mediocre squadmate, barely useful in Suicide Mission. However, technical expertise useful for combat and ship upgrades, and for seeker swarm countermeasure vital to surviving on Horizon.
  • Verbal Tic: Talks in sentence fragments, thinks aloud, Techno Babble, answers own questions, One-Liner, No time to breathe, Salarians Are As Mayflies, entire race Workaholics, *sharp inhale*... work even harder.
    • Must note. No other salarians share tic. Unique to Mordin.
    • Refers to self with first-person pronouns very rarely unless singing, mostly when statements would be nonsensical without an "I". Usually can, does avoid it. Happens if Shepard questions decision to cure genophage after working on it for so long.
      Mordin: I made a MISTAKE!
  • Vitriolic Best Buds:
    • Mutual respect, mutually derogatory banter with Kirrahe evident in STG mission report, spent whole time referring to the other as a cloaca. Mocks Kirrahe's constant "Hold the line" speeches, nevertheless has deep respect for former captain.
    • Friendship with Shepard has aspects of this. Mutually respect each other. However, recognise Shepard often becomes exasperated with salarian thought process. Permit them to interrupt when they've heard enough.
  • We Are as Mayflies: Inverted. Salarian lifespans much shorter than human ones. He himself already 30. Human equivalent 116.note  Will die soon, even if survive suicide mission and Tuchanka arc in 3.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Believes past actions necessary. Feels guilty regardless.
  • What Could Have Been: Invoked. Would have liked to run tests on the seashells planned on collecting.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: In the third game, realizes that genophage cure was sabotaged. Also that Shepard knew, said nothing.
  • The Wonka: Thinks out loud. Mental processes seemingly random. Techno Babbles constantly. Described as "Hamster on coffee".
  • Would Be Rude to Say "Genocide": Absolutely refuses to admit that Genophage was a slow genocide in second game. Eventually realizes being wrong in third game.
  • "X" Marks the Hero: Apparently received scar from krogan killed with pitchfork. Ruined right cranial horn.
  • You No Take Candle: Obviously highly intelligent — infinitives waste time!

    Zaeed Massani
A stubborn enough person can survive just about anything. Rage is a hell of an anesthetic...
"Zaeed is like you, but takes checks. As long as it's not my money, we're good."
Joker's description

Voiced by: Robin Sachs

A character who is only available through the Cerberus Network Downloadable Content content, free with every new copy of the game. He is the best bounty hunter in the galaxy and has been hired to help Shepard.

  • 0% Approval Rating: Back when he was commander of the Blue Suns, he was so hated by his men that Vido's coup was able to go off without a hitch. However, it seems that he still has friends in the Blue Suns if you take him on Garrus' recruitment mission.
  • Anti-Hero: A Nominal Hero in Mass Effect 2. Becomes an Unscrupulous Hero in Mass Effect 3; he's started restricting his ruthlessness to Cerberus, who definitely deserve it.
  • Atomic F-Bomb: Drops one during the quiet party in Citadel, describing how an intruder will feel when taking a dip in Shepard's bathtub (which he had just rigged):
  • Bad Boss: The Shadow Broker DLC hints that his willingness to throw his allies under the bus and his inability to inspire loyalty was a major factor in the Blue Suns betraying him. Keep this in mind if you get it in your head to make him leader of the fireteam during the Suicide Mission.
  • Badass Normal:
  • Berserk Button: Don't call his fixation with taking Vido down a 'grudge' or imply that he needs to let go.
  • The Berserker: To rival your average Krogan note . In fact, his indifference to collateral damage and his ability to shrug off staggering injuries resemble the actual historical berserkers, a caste of Norse warriors who fought in a trance-like state during which they could ignore pain but couldn't distinguish friend from foe. Harbinger even has a possible line of dialogue during Collector fights where he compliments Zaeed's "Aggression factor."
  • The Big Guy: He, Grunt and Garrus have the highest "hold the line" scores. Their base value is higher than any other loyal squadmate — with loyalty, they're each worth four points. He also has the second highest survival priority of any squadmate in that sequence, just above Garrus and below Grunt.
  • Black Humor: The man runs off of it. He has a seemingly-inexhaustible supply of hilariously gruesome anecdotes about that one time his entire team died horribly, or that other time his other team died horribly, or... This doubles as foreshadowing, hinting that he's a bad pick for squad leader during the Suicide Mission.
  • Bounty Hunter: Best in the business.
    Warden Kuril: I got sick of seeing prisoners escape justice. Bounty hunters... aren't reliable.
    Zaeed: Then you aren't hiring the right ones.
  • Catchphrase: The man likes to say "Goddamn", that's for sure. Lampshaded by Javik in the Citadel DLC.
  • Cluster F-Bomb: Goes into this when playing an arcade game. A claw machine to be precise. While trying to win a plushie toy. For an asari girl.
  • Cool Old Guy: In casual conversation, he'll tell stories about his previous adventures. If he's still alive by the Citadel DLC, he's mellowed out considerably and spends most of the party snarking with the other hardasses (Grunt, Wrex and Javik).
  • Cold Sniper: Very effective with an Incisor, and utterly detached from his deeds.
  • Crack Pairing: In-Universe, he tries and fails to hook up with Samara.
  • Crutch Character: Downplayed but still present. He gets recruited immediately upon Shepard's arrival in Omega and provides a serious boost in power due to having better health and weapon skills than Jacob or Miranda. He never actually becomes useless, but once you're able to recruit a larger and more diverse team he becomes far less useful since he lacks Grunt's overwhelming durability and exclusively uses Combat powers instead of having Tech or Biotic powers that benefit from power upgrades like Garrus or Samara.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Kind of a default way of stating things for him. Among other things, he can say an asari ex-girlfriend selling him out to the Blood Pack mercenaries "put a sour note on the whole relationship".
  • Demoted to Extra: While all of the squadmates introduced in 2 suffer from this in 3, Zaeed and Kasumi get the worst of it, likely due to being DLC characters.
  • Determinator: He credits his survival from a point-blank headshot to this (See pic quote.)
  • Disappeared Dad: In Mass Effect: Andromeda we learn that he was one.
  • The Dog Bites Back: After negotiations with a Cerberus contract go sour post-2, he starts taking jobs which disrupt their operations.
  • Doom Magnet: He seems to have an unnatural tendency of getting people around him killed. Works as a subtle warning against choosing him as a fireteam leader on the Suicide Mission.
  • Downloadable Content: Zaeed makes no appearance in the vanilla game.
  • Establishing Character Moment: When you first meet him, he's roughing up a batarian who repeatedly claims to be innocent for the crime Zaeed is capturing him for. After you're done talking to him, the batarian tries to run, so Zaeed casually kneecaps the poor bastard.
  • Even Evil Has Standards:
    • He's hardly a pleasant man, but what ethics he has are largely responsible for his "leaving" the Blue Sun; he disapproved of their hiring of batarians, whom he saw as terrorists. He also expresses disgust at Cerberus' imprisonment of biotic children if taken along on Jack's loyalty mission. He dislikes corporate security, preferring to work for his contracts and care who he's killing, and doesn't find torture worth it. Also, take him with you whenever the Collectors are involved and he is clearly disgusted and horrified by what he sees.
      Zaeed: "Cheaper labor," he said. "Goddamn terrorists," I said.
    • Speaking of Cerberus, this is all he has to say on how Cerberus offered him a new contract just as they went off the deep end between 2 and 3.
      Zaeed: Negotiations ended badly.
    • If brought to Jacob's loyalty mission, upon seeing what Ronald Taylor has done, Zaeed states that anyone who does this to their own men deserves a knife to the spine. Though if you talk to him afterwards on the ship, he's less judgmental.
    • In 3, apart from working against Cerberus, he's also very disgusted when Din Korlack tries to bargain when lives are at stake and he has barely anything to gain; however, it's more of a Good Cop/Bad Cop with Shepard (or Bad Cop/Bad Cop if Shepard takes a Renegade route.)
  • Evil Counterpart:
    • According to Joker, Zaeed is Shepard if they were Only in It for the Money. This gets stressed in Zaeed's loyalty mission, in which he does what Shepard's other Foil (Saren) did: use an oil refinery fire to get a target, sacrificing lives.
    • Zaeed is also one to Garrus, with their loyalty missions almost being perfect mirrors of each other. Both are searching for the men who wronged them and left them for dead, both suffered facial wounds as a result of that betrayal and both are willing to put Revenge Before Reason, unless Shepard either talks them down or chooses to let them indulge in it.
  • Exactly What I Aimed At: Pulled off during his loyalty mission, although it isn't quite as successful as he'd hoped.
    Zaeed: Fry, you son-of-a-bitch!
  • Expy: His background as a (dreaded) mercenary, Token Evil Teammate status, endless supply of war stories, combat-focused build, facial scars, gunmetal gray hair, and tattooed arms recall Canderous Ordo, another BioWare character.
  • Fantastic Racism: He especially hates batarians, as noted during his first encounter with Shepard.
  • Foreshadowing: He will happily tell you many, many stories about previous jobs he's worked where his allies met horrible deaths, but Zaeed himself made it out with a new scar or two. This indicates that Zaeed is a great pick to hold the line during the Suicide Mission, but an awful pick for the squad leader. He's a survivor, not a commander.
  • Friend to All Children: Despite his rough exterior and potty mouth, he still had time to help a random kid in a crane game when Shepard meets him again in the Citadel DLC. One of his stories about his old mercenary days involves him and his squad rescuing an eight year old escaped slave.
  • Get a Room!: Zaeed's reaction when FemShep and Garrus start flirting while he and Garrus are boobytrapping Shepard's apartment during the Citadel DLC.
    Zaeed: Oh, go get a room. God knows this place has enough of them.
  • Glass Eye: One green, the other one a replacement cybernetic prosthesis for the eye that (likely) got blown out when he was shot in the head.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: His extensive scars make it immediately clear he's not a morally squeaky-clean individual.
  • Greed: Admits the suicide mission doesn't sound like 'good business,' but believes the absurd amount Cerberus is paying him makes it worth his while.
  • Guttural Growler: Zaeed's voice is very rough.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: Paragon Shepard actually punches him and holds a gun to his head in order to hammer this point into Zaeed. By wanting to let innocents die in order to satisfy his need for vengeance, he's become no better than Vido.
  • Heel–Face Turn: In Mass Effect 3, after some "bad negotiations" with Cerberus, he's been actively taking jobs working against them.
  • Hidden Depths:
    • In the Citadel DLC, if part 1 of the party was calm and part 2 was lively, and Samara is also invited (who he is also trying to put moves on), he says something surprisingly poetic about an... abstract piece of art in the dining room. Samara more or less labels him with this trope.
      • Similarly, in another version of the party, he gets confused by a different abstract painting. Upon being told that it's art, he quickly declares that he likes it.
    • In the same DLC, if he's the only one invited, he'll tell a FemShep that he always thought she was beautiful.
  • I Call It "Vera":
    • Jessie, his old rifle. His attachment to it is quite strong, despite the fact that it 's been broken beyond repair for five years.
    • A message on Liara's information terminal in the third game shows that he's bought a parts kit for a discontinued assault rifle, indicating that he knows the Reaper War is going to be so bad that he'll need the most reliable weapon he ever owned by his side again.
  • Ink-Suit Actor:
  • Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: He describes the best way to get a krogan to talk: Stick a knife behind his forehead plate in just the right spot and pry it right off. The thought of it apparently drives them mad. In the Renegade end of his quest in 3, you can suggest he try this on Korlack. All he actually has to do is crack his knuckles.
  • Karmic Death: If Shepard leaves him to die on his loyalty mission, mostly because Shepard doesn't even kill him, just refuses to help him as he burns in the fire. The irony is noted by Shepard as well.
    Shepard: You started this fire, Zaeed. It makes sense that you'd burn in it.
  • Kick the Dog: His loyalty mission is basically just one long kick the dog moment, to the point that many fans view it as a Moral Event Horizon Crossing. In particular this line:
    Zaeed: Let these people burn! Vido dies whatever the cost!
  • Kill It with Fire: He gets powerful Inferno Grenades when you earn his loyalty.
  • Lack of Empathy: Big time during his loyalty mission.. and the rest of the time. He's fond of recounting the many horrible ways his former teammates have met their deaths in the same way other people reminisce about holidays.
  • Made of Iron: Survives a point-blank headshot.
  • The Mean Brit: "Walk it off. A little poison never hurt anyone."
  • Murder Is the Best Solution: His first solution to pretty much everything is violence. It backfired on him prior to the second game, and may hit him again if Shepard plays the cards wrong in his loyalty mission.
  • The Neidermeyer: His stories and the Shadow Broker's info on him indicate that Zaeed was a horrible leader who is incapable of inspiring loyalty and was quick to throw others under the bus. This is a pretty big indicator that he's a poor squad leader in the endgame.
  • Never My Fault: Somewhat implied from his war stories. On seeing a familiar weapon on the Citadel, he claims that the weapon was so good that its wielder took out half his squad. In general, most of his stories end with him noting the casualties nonchalantly, even when he was supposed to be the squad leader. Of course, it's still up to you whether you want a guy with this attitude leading your squad on the suicide mission.
  • Normally, I Would Be Dead Now: He survived getting shot in the head at point-blank range purely by sheer determination AND rage. (See sidepic quote)
  • Odd Friendship: Has developed two of them by way of the Citadel DLC:
    • He and Garrus bond over booby-trapping Shepard's apartment of all things. Though, it is slightly less odd when you consider how Garrus spent the two years after you stopped Sovereign (becoming a vigilante on Omega who pissed off all three of the mercenary groups) and the pride they take in their work.
    • Javik thinks he's a Prothean in disguise and they discuss conquering the galaxy together after the Reapers are gone. Note that Javik's interactions with most people of this cycle is to call them primitives and complain endlessly about their shortcomings.
  • Old Soldier: He practically embodies this trope.
  • One Last Job: The money he received from Cerberus as payment for joining Shepard's squad has made him seriously consider retirement. Either that or suicide via blowing his ship up near Omega.
  • Optional Party Member: He's a DLC character, if you didn't get a new copy of the game. Otherwise he's a free download.
  • The Peter Principle: While he's a great soldier, he's an awful commander whose survival is implied to be due to a talent for getting others killed in his place.
  • Pet the Dog: In the Citadel DLC, he reveals what got him addicted to a skill crane game was trying to make a crying kid happy by winning her a toy. Though it seemed to be more of a matter of pride for him than altruism, given that he keeps at the machine long after the kid leaves, and hands the prize to a random bystander after winning rather than trying to find the kid again.
  • Precision F-Strike: Being ol' Sir Swears-a-Lot, he's also prone to this. In the "Citadel" DLC, he's actually enraged to the point of swearing by a children's crane game.
  • Psycho for Hire: Albeit a much more subdued and refined version than most. He even gets a bit self-referential — he claims that the only people not to piss themselves when having a gun next to their heads are psychotic maniacs and trained killers. And they can be hard to discern sometimes.
  • Rebel Relaxation: In his room on the ship and during the pre-suicide mission briefing; he's the only one not standing at the table, opting to slouch against a wall near the end of the room. His ending in the Extended Cut also shows him relaxing on a lawn chair after the war is over. With his beloved "Jessie" beside him.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Possible in 3 if Zaeed wasn't loyal in 2. He dies saving ambassador Din Korlack from the other mercs who had been duped into thinking Din was still a Cerberus sympathizer. If loyal? He kills them all the SECOND Shepard asks.
  • Retired Monster: He was once a very vicious merc and co-founded the Blue Suns. Though he hasn't stepped down too far — now he's a Bounty Hunter.
  • Retirony: Played with. The Shadow Broker's intel reveals that Zaeed is contemplating retirement after finishing Shepard's mission and he is so annoyed by the thought that the best plan he came up with so far is invoking the trope himself, by committing a Suicide Attack on Omega.
  • Retired Badass: If he makes it to the end of 3, his personal slide in the Extended Cut shows him kicking back on a deckchair somewhere, beer in hand. Guess he found someplace he could stand after all.
  • Revenge Before Reason: Big time. When faced with Vido again during his loyalty mission, all it takes is a few taunts and he sets the refinery you're in on fire - which not only fails to kill Vido, it causes a Paragon Shepard to delay the chase in order to save the refinery workers, allowing Vido to escape.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge:
    • His real motivation during his character quest, despite his initial claim that he's in it to liberate a factory of workers from the Blue Suns mercenary group, which he co-founded. It's possible for a Paragon Shepard to not only allow the target to escape in order to save the workers, but gain Zaeed's loyalty anyway in a scene that proves good is most definitely not soft and indecisive. As a bonus, he never brings it up again in the third game; presumably, he's learned to let that go, or at least get his priorities straight.
    • Dummied Out dialogue in 3 mention he got his revenge even if Vido got away in his loyalty mission: Denying a Mercy Kill on somebody getting abducted by the Reapers is brutal even by his standards.
  • Say My Name: If he's left to die on his loyalty mission.
  • Seen It All: This is not Zaeed's first suicide mission, and so long as he is being paid a handsome sum for his work, he is more than willing to roll with the punches.
  • Serious Business: In the Citadel DLC, believe it or not, a claw-machine.
    Zaeed: What could be more important than Zaeed Massani not getting bested by some fucking kid's game!?
  • Shouting Shooter: In his loyalty mission, if you pick Paragon.
  • Sir Swears-a-Lot: Not as much as Jack, but occasionally. Especially in the Citadel DLC after failing at a skill crane for too long.
  • Sociopathic Hero: He has some amusing war stories, but during his loyalty mission, it becomes apparent that he's chillingly ruthless in his pursuit of vengeance. Hell, a lot of his stories are rather horrifying, which gets amplified by his even and detached manner of delivering them.
  • Sole Survivor:
    • All of his stories usually result in everyone in his squad but him dying, though rather than a testament to his skills, most of this seems to be more out of his ability to get others killed, either through bad luck or just tossing them under the fire. Keep this in mind when choosing fire team leaders during the suicide mission.
    • In the second worst version of the Extended Cut version of the destroy ending in Mass Effect 3, several planets in the galaxy lie torn and barren from the war and several species are skirting on the edge of extinction. Meanwhile Zaeed is shown to be only one having a somewhat comfortable outcome, having apparently retired to a somewhat untouched, sunny corner of Earth.
  • Sweet and Sour Grapes: Cut content from Mass Effect 3 indicates he struck out and got revenge on Vido on his own if you denied him in his loyalty mission in 2.
  • Tattoo as Character Type: He has a tattoo on his neck, visible when you recruit him, plus sleeves. Like other members of that organization, it's a Blue Suns tattoo.
  • Tattooed Crook: Nothing compared to Jack, but he has full sleeves and a neck tattoo.
  • 'Tis Only a Bullet in the Brain: He walked off getting shot in the head. According to himself, he managed to do this by simply being too stubborn to die.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Less than a freshly-recruited Jack, and much less than Morinth, should you recruit her but more than Grunt or loyal Jack. In contrast to Tali, it's considerably more difficult to win his loyalty with the Paragon approach, which requires a persuade check.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Not as much as Jack or Miranda, but he's noticeably far more pleasant in 3, particularly in "Citadel".
  • Unflinching Walk: During his loyalty mission (if you chose the Renegade path).
  • Unstoppable Rage: Provides the page quote. He claims that this was how he survived getting his right eye socket blown off at point-blank range. He enters one again during his loyalty mission.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Gets this from Paragon Shepard in his loyalty mission. The first is a straight-up punch to the face. The second is pointing a gun at him and threatening to leave him to burn for being willing to do the same for civilian factory workers. This will actually earn his respect enough so that he'll still be loyal in the end.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Shepard can leave Zaeed to die during his loyalty mission if the player chooses. However, this requires 1) waiting until after the suicide mission to do his loyalty mission and 2) having at least two other surviving squadmates in addition to Zaeed.
  • Younger Than They Look: You wouldn't believe this by looking at him, but according to the official website, he is only 40 years old.


Secret Party Members

The two secret party members have gotten their own page. Don't go there unless you don't care about spoilers. To find it, go to this page.

Guest Party Members

Don't get too attached.
"Miranda? But you're..."

Voiced by: Steve Blum

One of the Cerberus medical officers working on the Lazarus Project. After everything goes to hell, he helps you out after you heal him. When you finally meet up with Miranda, she guns him down for being the traitor who caused this mess in the first place, thus continuing the Bioware tradition of early game sacrificial party members.

  • Asshole Victim: Miranda shoots him for betraying Cerberus the instant she sees him.
  • Bald of Evil: Being a member of Cerberus is bad enough, but he's also working for the Shadow Broker to sabotage Project Lazarus.
  • Beard of Evil: He's willing to sabotage Project Lazarus for money.
  • Death by Materialism: When checking logs on the medical station, Wilson constantly complains that Cerberus pumped 4 billion credits into resurrecting Shepard, and he implies that he isn't getting paid enough. It makes it kind of clear why he betrays Cerberus and Miranda. It turns out he was working with the Shadow Broker, so it seems the Broker paid more than Cerberus.
  • Didn't Think This Through: Wilson should have been in a better position than anyone else to understand that it would take more than some mechs to stop Miranda, let alone the newly-awoken Shepard.
  • Dirty Coward: Even when in your party, this is very apparent.
  • The Engineer: One of his jobs with Cerberus.
  • Guest-Star Party Member: He's killed at the end of the first mission. At least you get to see him in action, unlike poor Jenkins.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: He hacked into the station's mechs in an attempt to kill Shepard and sabotage the entire project. One of them shoots him badly enough that he's unable to escape until Shepard and Jacob show up, by which time Miranda's already between him and the escape shuttles. Even more unfortunately for Wilson, she's not in the mood to forgive and forget.
  • Killed Mid-Sentence:
    Wilson: Miranda? But you're...
    Miranda: Dead?
  • The Mole: He started the disaster that led to Shepard's early awakening, but you don't know who he was working for at first. He was working for the Shadow Broker.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • His reaction to hearing that Shepard was still alive after sabotaging the Mechs.
    • He gets an even bigger one after running into Miranda again. Unfortunately for him, it was also a very short one.
  • Playing with Syringes: He helps bring someone back from the dead.
  • Too Dumb to Live: He had no reason to think Cerberus would let him live after he betrayed them.
  • Turncoat: He betrays Cerberus for the Shadow Broker.

Alternative Title(s): Mass Effect 2 Party Members