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"Two million dead in the first day, another 7 million by the end of the first week, every defense annihilated, all our forces on the run. Regrouping... Somewhere... Reports are coming in from other major cities. It's a well-coordinated attack, and so far it's been damned effective. Don't know what they are, what they want, or where they came from... Only one thing is certain: If Shepard doesn't bring help soon, there won't be an Earth left to save."
Major Coats aka "Big Ben", Mass Effect 3 announcement trailer

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Admiral Anderson: How bad is it?
Admiral Hackett: Bad.
—The opening lines of the game, basically summing up its mood.

Unnamed Alliance Councilor: We need a plan to stop them.
Shepard: We fight or we die! That's the plan.

"I know a thing or two about killing Reapers."

"Go out there and give them hell. You were born to do this."

In 2157, humanity discovered it was not alone in the Universe.

Thirty years later, they found a peaceful place among dozens of galactic species.
But this idyllic future is overshadowed by a dark past;
Reapers, a sentient race of machines responsible for cleansing the galaxy of all organic life every 50,000 years, are about to return.
The leaders of the Galaxy are paralyzed by indecision, unable to accept the legend of the Reapers as fact.
But one soldier has seen the legend come to life.


And now, the fate of the galaxy depends on him/her.
—Mass Effect 3 Opening Scroll

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Shepard: I've had enough of your tabloid journalism!
Khalisah: Ha! You want some? / Not this time, you military thug! (punch)
Shepard: Gah!
Khalisah: On second thought, never mind. I don't have any more questions for you.

OR

Shepard: I've had enough of your tabloid journalism!
Khalisah: Ha! You want some? / Not this time, you military thug! (Use Your Head headbutted) Urgh...
Shepard: You're angry, I get that. But I came here to get help for Earth, not answer your questions. Stay down.

Twitter: I loved 98% of ME3..but something has to be up w/ ending..too much talent at BW for that business. Keep my saves?
Bioware: We're keeping our saves, that's for sure.

Twitter: Mass Effect 3 was brilliant, the whole series was, but while this probably won't be answered, is that really how Shepard ends?
Bioware: We can't saaaaay!

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Twitter: I still want to believe you guys are sneaky trolls and have something going on you don't tell us yet. Can I get a cryptic reply?
Bioware: The sun, it shines.
— Bioware is officially trolling the audience

Shepard: Why me? Why put me in charge of all this?
Hackett: Shepard, let me tell you something that I've learned the hard way. You can pay a soldier to fire a gun. You can pay him to charge the enemy and take a hill. But you can't pay him to believe.
Shepard: ...I don't follow, sir.
Hackett: When you went up against Sovereign, there was no good reason to believe you'd win. But your crew didn't seem to care — they went along anyway. Your trip through the Omega 4 relay? That was a suicide mission if there ever was one. Yet there your crew was, standing beside you, proud to serve. With all you're facing out there, one thing impresses me most: you inspire confidence. I know everything hasn't gone as well as you'd hoped. Every war has its disagreements, so to speak. But... Your crew has done things no one else would even try — simply because you asked them to. Why? Because they believed in you. Their leader. That's what I need now.

Holy shit, that's SHEPARD!
—Cerberus soldiers realising just how screwed they are.

What's the difference between Commander Shepard and a krogan? One is a headbutting juggernaut of mass destruction - the other has four testicles.
—Alliance joke

Garrus: Alright, my turn. What's the first order an Alliance commander gives at the start of combat?
Joker: Uh... I give up.
Garrus: [chuckles] Correct.
Joker: Ohohoh... alright, big guy. What do you call it when a turian gets killed by a horrible spiky monster?
Garrus: Friendly fire - come on, that one goes back to Shanxi!
Joker: Well, you gotta respect the classics!
Garrus: How many humans does it take to activate a dormant mass relay?
Joker: (exasperated) 602. 600 to vote on it, one to ask the asari for technical help and one to request a seat on the Council afterwards. How do you know when a turian is out of ammo?
Garrus: He switches to the stick up his ass as a backup weapon. Why does the Alliance hire pilots... with brittle bone disease?
Joker: Y... you're shittin' me! The turian military has one about me?
Garrus: Oh, absolutely. I heard it myself from a private back on Palaven.
Joker: Okay, why does the Alliance hire pilots with brittle bone disease?
Garrus: So that their marines can beat someone in hand-to-hand drills.
Joker: ...damn, you need to tell James that one. Hey, what's the hardest part about treating a turian who took a rocket to one side of his face?
Garrus: (deadpan) Figuring out which side took the rocket.

Shepard: How are you even getting drunk?
Tali: Verrrry carefully. Turian brandy, triple-filterrred, and introduced into my suit through an emergency induction port.
Shepard: ...That's a straw, Tali.
Tali: Emeeeergency induction port.

Tali: When do we get to stop reacting to our parents and start living for ourselves?
Shepard: The answer to that one's at the bottom of that glass.
Tali: I might need some help with the induction straw. Port. You know.

Somewhere, deep in the fabric of reality, our actions are recorded and remembered. Yours will be remembered for eternity.
Padok Wiks

Kai Leng: Even if you win, you're too late to stop what's coming!
Shepard: Maybe, maybe not...but YOU won't be there to see it!

Sam Hulick's Twitter: Tossing in piano and muted strings for this one particular piece. High potential for tears. #MEDLC
Tumblr: IT HURTS ALREADY

The Reapers have destroyed thousands of civilizations. But they have never destroyed ours. Nor will they.
EDI

None have possessed the strength in previous Cycles. Your own species could be destroyed with a single thought. But you are different. I have witnessed your actions in this Cycle: the destruction of Sovereign; the fall of the Collectors. The Reapers perceive you as a threat. And I must understand why?!
Leviathan

Shepard: Okay, everyone say "Normandy"!
Companions: NORMANDY! (CLICK!)
—Group photo taking the end of the Citadel DLC

Squad Member/Love Interest: We've had a good ride.
Shepard: The best.
Final words of the Citadel DLC, and by extent, the entire Mass Effect Trilogy

"The war is over. The Reapers have been defeated. Against all odds, and in the face of the greatest threat this galaxy has ever known, we survived. We suffered many losses. The relays are severely damaged, but we won. This victory belongs to each of us... every man, woman, and child. Every civilization... on every world. Now, as we take our first steps towards restoring what we lost, we must remember what it took to win. This wasn't a victory by a single fleet, a single army, or even a single species. If this war has taught us anything, it is that we are strongest when we work together. And if we can put down our grievances long enough to stop something as powerful as the Reapers, imagine what we can achieve now that they are defeated. It will take time, but we can rebuild everything that was destroyed. Our homes, our worlds, our fleets and defenses. All of this and more. Together, we can build a future greater than any one of us could imagine. A future paid for by the sacrifices of those who fought and died alongside us. A future that many will never see. And while we still have many challenges ahead of us... We can face them together. And we will honor those who died to give us that future."
Admiral Hackett, Destroy ending

"Eternal. Infinite. Immortal. The wo/man I was used these words, but only now do I truly understand. And only now do I understand the full extent of his/her sacrifice. Through his/her death, I was created. Through my birth, his/her thoughts were freed. They guide me now, give me reason, direction. Just as s/he gave direction to the ones who followed him/her, the ones who helped him/her achieve his/her purpose. Now my purpose. To give the many hope for a future. To ensure that all have a voice in their future. The wo/man I was knew that s/he could only achieve this by becoming something greater. There is power in control. There is wisdom in harnessing the strengths of your enemy. I will rebuild what the many have lost. I will create a future with limitless possibilities. I will protect and sustain. I will act as guardian for the many. And throughout it all, I will never forget. I will remember the ones who sacrificed themselves so that the many could survive. The wo/man who gave up his/her life to become the one who could save the many."
Commander Shepard, Control ending

"I am alive. All of us, synthetic and organic, have been changed. The war is over, and the Reapers are helping to rebuild. Where once they threatened us with extinction... ...they now bring us the collective knowledge of the cultures that came before. As a galaxy, we can now live the lives we have wished for... ...taking our first steps into a new and wonderful future... ...where organics and synthetics can coexist peacefully. With peace across the galaxy and with unlimited access to knowledge... ...to recover the greatness that was lost... ...and surpass it. We will reclaim our worlds... and the stars. As the line between synthetic and organic disappears, we may transcend mortality itself... ...to reach a level of existence I cannot even imagine. And we will remember that this chance for a new life did not come without cost. No matter how far we advance, we will remember the sacrifices of those who made it possible. And we will remember Shepard. Because of him/her... I am alive, and I am not alone."
EDI, Synthesis ending


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