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Here’s a social experiment.

Take a popular sci-fi series (in this case, Mass Effect).

Start up a news feed that posts official, daily, in-universe news blurbs.

Add a commentary box.

And just watch the roleplaying begin.

This is what happened to Cerberus Daily News, a fake news blog based off of the daily news feeds that would show up on Mass Effect 2's Start Screen. Growing into a roleplaying site almost overnight, it has since created its own forum, storylines, chat channel and site wiki, staying true to its roots by releasing daily news articles on the state of the Galaxy written by its userbase.

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Cerberus Daily News has played through the events of Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3, using the articles and in-game Codices as its backbone. Having rebooted its forums, it now explores events After the End, choosing one of the game’s canonical endings and creating a scenario that takes place one year after the final events of the series’ finale (specifically, in CDN's canon, Shepard was female and went for the Control Ending), using a series of community-written “Retrospectives” to flesh out the forum’s current setting.

It can be found here. The original (unformatted Wordpress site) can be found here, its old forum can be found here, and its wiki here. If you would like to submit your own front-page story for the site, here are the posting guidelines.

One of the greatest adventures has been archived in the form of a recap. Please enjoy: The Battle of Veratix Station.

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Cerberus Daily News contains the following tropes:

  • Ace Pilot: Gatrinex, who was a Turian Hierarchy fighter jock. Most notably, he was the winner of the insane obstacle course that was the 7 Rings Race. Sadly, he died early in the Reaper War, shot down over Palaven.
  • Actor Allusion: An actor named Carth Onasi plays a fictionalized expy of Kaidan in Citadel XXX. They're played by the same VA.
  • Addled Addict: It’s impossible to tell if Eightball is this or a slightly terrifying form of Functional Addict. Even after he goes cold turkey, he’s as bizarre in his behaviour as ever.
  • After the End: The forum is in a post-Mass Effect 3 timeframe. A couple of years have passed, with the relay network coming back online and galaxy-wide travel starting up again. Most of the nations and factions are in the process of rebuilding.
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  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot: D.W.I.C.K, apparently. It briefly appeared to have taken over Dwick Dwickcast Syndykyt. Terrorbyte activated it during a short-lived coup attempt following the real Dwick's multi-day disappearance. Hijinks ensured.
  • All Animals Are Dogs: Choriick. Which are essentially salarian spider-dogs. Also Talxu, which are asari aqua-dogs (with a little chimp in the mix).
  • All Drummers Are Animals: Skhash the drummer. A vorcha who plays drums for a red metal band. Sibverted since, by vorcha standards, he's actually pretty well-spoken and shows considerable intelligence.
  • The Alleged Car: Turul's ship, which looks like it belongs on a trash heap. Basically a Running Gag, in that most of Turul's infrequent but crazy road trips involve characters being introduced to the ship, often while hurrying to board it.
  • All There in the Manual: The retrospectives cover what happened after the war for most factions.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: Averted with the yahg, who are imagined not as bloodthirsty and uncontrollable but as a sophisticated - if dangerous - race who can integrate into the galactic community, if both they and the other races take steps to make it work.
  • Amoral Attorney: Xavier Platt, more or less. This includes planning the assassination of political obstacles.
  • Amusing Alien: The vorcha. Terrifying in battle. Hilarious as pets. Special mention to Curr the News Vorcha, whose popular show "News With Curr" is good for a laugh and/or the urge to end it all.
  • Antiquated Linguistics:
    • In one thread, Nikolai Aleksanders mocks the hyperbolic inanities of Wedeg Biigs by affecting a hammy and ludicrously purple posting style, which is rapidly adopted by everyone else in the thread, leading to an Antiquated Linguistics battle of sorts. Also a form of I Shall Taunt You.
    • SerArcheosEater sounds like this; he speaks an old krogan language in a dialect that translates very much in line with this trope.
  • Anyone Can Die: Board rules prevent members from killing each other’s characters without their express pre-approval. This doesn't stop several characters from meeting their end at gunpoint.
  • Apocalypse Cult: A salarian version of this was responsible in part for the destruction of a salarian city with a WMD.
  • Apocalyptic Log: When the Reapers finally arrive, many comments in CDN reports are filled with transmissions from worlds they are attacking. Many are suddenly cut off mid-sentence.
  • As Long as There is Evil: The last sentiment of Discori, who as he dies mocks the idea that good intentions can ever change the nature of the Terminus. There will always be someone like him, no matter how often do-gooders put a temporary stop to it.
  • Author Existence Failure: Happens in-universe when Suzi Spektre, the actress who plays "Shepherd" in Citadel XXX is killed during the Reaper attack on earth. Shepherd's role is taken up by Melody Jovia. The change in appearance is explained via the Cerberus "Elazar Project's" facial reconstruction, just like in the game.
  • Band of Brothels: The Illium Intimate Services Sisterhood, which does what it can to keep the industry safe and reputable on Illium. The Citadel has its equivalent, the Sapphire Alliance.
  • Berserk Button: Very, very many examples. Some include:
    • Accusing individual quarians of being responsible for their own fate.
    • Calling Diplomatic Immunity a politician.
    • Bad-mouthing Kirok's varren.
    • Bringing up Janice Proctor's past Terra Firma membership.
    • Calling Liria T'Remi a piece of meat.
  • Big Eater: Dwick Junior, one of Branka’s varren pups. It turns out he’s biotic, which explains a lot. Dwick himself is also a total glutton, one of the reasons why the pup takes his name.
  • Big Good: Possibly the Special Tasks Group. They coordinated the defence against the greatest pre-Reaper threat the board ever knew - QoroQ - and are perhaps, in a strange sense, the most likely protagonist faction.
  • Biggus Dickus: Danny from Accounting, AKA Masturbatorum Throatfuck the Man Fortress. One of the stranger Brick Jokes.
  • Blue Blood: Mano’har, the exiled batarian nobleman. Has an appropriately Overly Long Name.
  • Bondage Is Bad: Averted. Pleasant and respectable characters like Harrad Illum and his husband Cour, Daia T’Nara, and Jacob Angelaus all engage in it (though Angelaus’ girlfriend Nalia is a huge hypocrite, being publicly uptight and contemptuous of sexual urges).
  • Book-Ends: QoroQ’s first and final victims are volus, killed through grisly dismemberment and depressurization.
  • Boring Insult: Not that it caused him any concern, but Cerastes received one of these from Haseri of all people, in a post where Haseri compared his current behaviour to that of a predictable cartoon villain. Being a respectable hanar, Haseri delivered it in the politest way possible. Being Cerastes, Cerastes wasn't unduly provoked.
  • Brick Joke: Long-time members have long memories.
  • Buccaneer Broadcaster: The Voice of Omega run by Job Larson and his hobo friends. Used primarily to talk about whatever rumours are currently spreading around Omega. With occasional conspiracy theories thrown in. Ask him about the Tusk-Man.
  • Buffy Speak: Mandatory (Boss):
    "That's all you unfunny assholes ever f***ing say, "WHELP WHELP WHELP" all f***ing day and f***ing night. Like some kind of thing... that screams whelp a lot".
  • Cadre of Foreign Bodyguards:
    • Most NPC drell are this (to hanar); the player character drell, on the other hand, are often non-Compact.
    • The miniature army of biotic volus hired by Terrorbyte, since repurposed by Dwick into a bodyguard/servant unit for Lydia.
  • Cannibal Clan: Z-Tribe. A group of people from the Terminus sharing an account who enjoyed eating other sapient beings. They dine together as a family... often on a family, apparently.
  • Cannibalism Superpower: "Devour The Hearts Of NKaria's Adversaries So That You May Take Their Power For Yourself", a side-scrolling platformer; distribution is banned in the Illuminated Primacy due to extreme gore, subversive religious themes, and depictions of intense violence. Featuring Jammin' Moxie, voiced by Tethys Reave.
  • Child Soldiers: Part of several characters' background - most commonly turians or drell. The issue of child soldiers is currently a controversial one due to reports of underage drell soldiers used by the Illuminated Primacy; the drell rights groups have been making a fuss.
  • Coincidence Magnet: Applicable to the entire forum, and the characters' habits of running into each other even when doing mundane things like grocery shopping. The characters often Lampshade it, usually by joking/theorizing that the CDN forums are actually an exercise in probability manipulation.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: See anything yellow and related to either Aphin, Tarn or Kittens? Don’t trust it.
  • Conspiracy Theorist: Several. Job Larson lives and breathes them, along with anything to do with the paranormal, and hosts his own radio show pretty much dedicated to them. Also, Capice ran practically every Reaper-related rumour by the boards before the Invasion of Earth (to everyone else’s irritation).
  • Continuation: Bioware’s official CDN news articles have ended, but forum members continue to create them in their absence.
  • Cool Cat: Jammin' Moxie (moxies being four-eyed turian cats).
  • Cool Shades: Julmoth. Twice as cool because he's a batarian.
    "I don't always come back from the dead, but when I do, I make sure to wear awesome shades."
  • Cool Starship: Too many to name. Many were destroyed in the Reaper War, however.
    • A thread in the old Virtual Lounge (the OOC section) is about inventing even more of these.
    • The Hierophant-class:
      It is said that when the Hierophant of Gruul asked for a superweapon to destroy his enemies, he was told it could not be done. When he asked for a dreadnought, he was told that he did not have the budget. So he asked for a heavy cruiser, and told his men that it must be the best cruiser that could possibly exist, one that would crush his enemies and lead his fleets to victory. When he was brought back the design for the Hierophant-class, he asked why his men claimed that they could not bring him a superweapon."
  • Dead Man Writing: Last Wills and Testaments triggered by Dead Man Switches are so ubiquitous that Diplomatic Immunity once had one go off early as a gag.
  • Deadpan Snarker: A staple characteristic for the forum. Although the ultimate example might well be Dyson, the galaxy's most sarcastic geth, whose put-downs and come-backs (eminently logical, of course) became legendary. It had a disturbing habit of keeping tabs on other posters and linking effortlessly to previous posts as a means of demonstrating his opponents' hypocrisy or contradictions.
  • Distressed Damsel: Kidnapping is a very common occurrence, so much so that one child was given a subdermal distress beacon for “in the unlikely circumstance that you leave your father's line of sight again.”
  • Doorstopper: The poems of Dord, an elcor poet whose works have been discussed on the forum. Her poem “help” is four million words long.
  • Elseworld: Elseworld threads explore different “non-canonical” scenarios. They’re common enough that they had their own sub-forum for a time.
  • Everything's Better with Penguins: Ket'Etal winds up acquiring a penguin, initially as a joke. He names it "Kettle Junior" and he ends up keeping it around for several months. Why a penguin? Because of this trope, essentially.
  • Evil Albino: Cerastes.
  • Executive Meddling: Temporarily happened in-universe to The Life Egregious.
  • Expy:
  • Eye Scream: Considering the average forum-goer’s occupation, bullets and knives to the squishy bits are a distressingly common occurrence. Just ask Davril, Dietrich, Aphin, or really any member of Cerberus before the end of Mass Effect 3.
  • Fantastic Racism: Incredibly common. Nearly every race hates at least one other race by default, and practically everyone despises both vorcha and quarians. That said, after the Reaper War the latter race are more acceptable to many as members of the galactic community. Not everyone, though.
  • Fantastic Slurs: Kickballs (volus), Furheads (humans), Blinks (batarians), Frogs (salarians), Flashlights (geth), Spikebutts (turians), Bluetits (asari), Lizards (drell or krogan), and Buckets (quarians).
  • Faux to Guide: The "Serious Life Coach Column" should totally be taken at face value and obeyed to the letter. No flippancy or satire goes anywhere near those posts, honest!
  • Field Promotion:
    • SvChief Jaquento Schmidt got one to GyChief after his unorthodox idea saved the Teutoburg Forrest from being destroyed by crashing into a planet.
    • Likewise for GyChief Tritt, who got his current rank after ending a hostage crisis with no civilian loss of life. Unfortunately, he's now stuck as company logistics NCO.
  • Fisher King: Jorgal Dwick's larger than life personality and physical girth are diminished when the asari finally start reclaiming the city of "Nos Dwicka" on Illium.
  • Gambit Pileup: This happened when Varril was imprisoned and several different complicated plans were hatched to rescue him, but most of the disorganized confusion you'd usually expect is averted, as Varril gets out in the end.
  • Gladiator Games: The Chresk games. One NPC character, the Blue Volus, became famous for being the victor in a six-volus death match, and appeared on the boards as a player character a few years later, now running a cruise ship.
  • A Good Name for a Rock Band: One response to someone pointing out that the Blue Suns are only a short step away from being called the Azure Supernovas (in a thread in which organisation names were being mocked). Another pointed out that this would be an exceptionally bad name for an asari strip joint. Note that "Azure" is slang for an asari's genitals.
  • Ham-to-Ham Combat: Two volus engage in a BATTLE TO THE DEATH.
  • Has Two Mommies:
    • Laelix, Harrad and Cour's adoptive son, has two daddies.
    • Kolya (Human Quarian). Technically it was one dad and one Honorary Uncle and it was only for four years of his life, but it still counts.
  • Hidden Depths: One of the central themes with Prax ("Deadbeat"), who clearly could be so much more than the apathetic layabout he chooses to be. Notably he is surprisingly well-read and able to write poetry in multiple forms and genres.
  • Hideous Hangover Cure: Goronak's concoction. Whatever it is, it tastes awful, but works.
  • Hilarity Ensues:
    • Having been detained for questioning by Citadel customs, Thalyr'ra enlisted a deadbeat and a stoned krogan to break him out. The results were...chaotic, to say the least.
    • After having a troubled recovery from her imprisonment by Abad Sam-mel, Cuddle Bomb decides to celebrate her newfound freedom by tackling that very same slaver in Afterlife, with a whole crowd watching.
  • Hive Caste System: The rachni caste system has been expanded and defined in detail since the race made its return to galactic society in the aftermath of the Reaper War.
  • Holier Than Thou: Kel'Jaroth might not have been religious, but he preached at everybody.
  • I Call It "Vera": A somewhat archaic trope, but consider Quint's FMBLA and Aphin's Fishjolnir. The former is a gun that shoots spent heat sinks at their opponents. The latter is a three foot-long rubber fish on a handle.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: The calling cry of many a character. Pertinent examples include Emon Spiza and the more reluctant mercenaries.
  • Insistent Terminology:
    • The humans tend to insist that upon their heads they sport "hair" and not "fur".
    • Capice: "Independent drell", not "non-Compacted drell". A bit of a Berserk Button.
    • Nalia’Tonbay (Valaar Ke'el): A Lak'Ratar Veran is not a cape.
  • Internet Counterattack: Taken to an extreme with Operation Down With Discord. Discori made some postings offering to sell slaves. An army of mercenaries launched a coordinated attack on his base. Oh fuck, the extranet is here.
  • Interspecies Adoption: Davril, a turian, adopted Flower, a human. Also Xuumo the elcor and his human adopted son/junior partner/meal ticket Alonso.
  • Kicked Upstairs:
    • When Jaquento Schmidt accepted a position at the Alliance Tower on the Citadel, he was promoted for formal reasons only, giving him rank superiority over his coworkers and a bigger pay check.
    • Same for Gunny Tritt, whose new rank came with the billet of company gunny, placing him in charge of logistics and training, and taking him off the line. He's doing his best to get put back on the line, though.
  • Killer Rabbit: An expedition to an uncharted planet yielded the discovery of small blue lizards with biotic powers, though they seemed pretty harmless.
  • Klatchian Coffee: The coffee Cerastes makes once actually killed someone.
  • Large Ham:
    • Perhaps inevitably (due to Rule of Funny), the volus are the race most likely to fit the trope.
    • SNOW VARREN SPEAKS IN GREEN, BOLD, ALL-CAPS SENTENCES, WITH NO CONCEPT OF FIRST-PERSON SINGULAR.
    • Jon Briggs was a respectable BUSINESSMAN, whose BOMBASTIC and RANDOMLY CAPITALIZED speeches SHOULD NOT remind anyone of Peterman. NOT AT ALL.
    • Jorgal Dwick and Terrorbyte have crafted their own small media empire by being a pair of hams.
  • Mass "Oh, Crap!":
    • Happens when Abattoir decides to show up to the meeting that was meant to posthumously divvy up his territory.
    • The nature of the main feed regarding the last few days up to the Mass Effect 3 launch.
    • Diplomatic Immunity, one of the first to respond to the "We are experiencing technical difficulties" error on the Alliance News Network feed, commented that "I need to make some phone calls..."
    • The forum itself, following the Reaper invasion beginning in the forums proper.
    • When Occulus reveals that he has become an emergent intelligence. (A VI who has turned into a AI.)
      >>QUERY
      >>DEFINE "EXISTENCE"
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: For the "Nos Dwicka" plot, eldritch happenings and bizarre phenomena have been happening in the city for years, but it's never made clear if there is a logical explanation. When Mekan of Omega underwent a potential possession by a krogran demigod, "I draw the line at the Magic Krogan" became a forum catchphrase, as a summary of the uncertain nature.
  • Mega-Corp: Titan Corporation (possibly the name seeks to lampshade its status). Its corporate armies, general lack of ethics, questionable experiments, and household name paints it as a classic Megacorp.
  • More Than Mind Control: Lydia’s ordeal, after she’s abducted and left to the mercies of Terna Caelnion, who aims to recondition her into being a loyal and docile slave to her former owners.
  • MST: A fictional James Bond IN SPACE is ripped apart in one thread.
  • My Master, Right or Wrong: The indentured servants that belonged to Johnny/Some_Random_Merc. Goddess knows that he did some unpleasant thing, but they stuck by him.
  • My Species Doth Protest Too Much: A significant number of characters behave in ways you wouldn't expect from their species. Given this is Mass Effect, it's only to be expected.
  • The Napoleon: Druss Jorkakt, being a volus, is short and physically unimposing. She is also aggressive, pushy, hot-headed and has a chip on her shoulder about her people's general near-uselessness in combat.
  • Neighbourhood-Friendly Gangsters: The Camalan Grusto, who run post-war Camala as part of the Batarian Confederacy.
  • Never Live It Down: Where were the Salarians at the Battle of Earth? Everyone else was there - even the remnants of the Batarian fleet. Everyone. But not one of the four Council races. The Salarian Union has been in damage-control mode almost non-stop in the war's aftermath. invoked
  • New Neighbours as the Plot Demands:
    • Efforts have been made to avert this. A thread in the former virtual lounge existed for the creation of sovereign nations within the Terminus, so that the region could be fleshed out consistently and with a fair amount of pre-established political backstory. It also provides plenty of inspiration for new Terminus characters. Still, Terminus nations are often invented wholesale, among the more prominent being the Theocracy of Gruul, the Technocracy of Valkar, and the High Republic of Orozvhad.
    • Non-canon species are not permitted; although it's known that both the Turian Hierarchy and the Terminus contain several species as yet unrevealed, characters are limited to official canon species.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!:
    • For over a year, Mekan and Dano faced accusations of this regarding the Systems Alliance-Vies War, which they were “credited” with starting. This was really quite unfair, as the board eventually acknowledged.
    • Similarly, and predating it, the so-called Wagstaff Affair was a huge embarrassment for the Systems Alliance and CDN.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Lady Sweat.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Anyone who tries to do something helpful for Dani will find themselves screwed over by Dani. Most notably, Jil'Korah once brought her a new suit, only to be immediately mugged by her.
  • Noodle Incident: The Hylagean Fog is mentioned sporadically and vaguely by both salarian and batarian intelligence operatives. Nothing about it is known except that it is deadly, biological in nature, and capable of space-faring. It's implied that the threat was dealt with by salarian STG and batarian state security, but the details are never revealed.
  • No Social Skills: A seemingly common trait of the raloi. In Najhil's case, it's a result of the brutal, strict, state-run orphanage she was raised in. Some of the more technically-minded people are prone to this as well.
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: One Classy Bloke - ha ha, it's a volus in a top hat with a cane! Funny, right? Well, he not only showed signs of being a Manipulative Bastard...he was a biotic vanguard on top of that. It doesn't help him in the end.
  • Occupiers out of Our Country:
    • This has been a growing sentiment amongst human colonists toward the Alliance's post-war government, which they consider to be exploiting their resources without recompense to aid Earth's reconstruction while simultaneously neglecting their needs.
    • The history of the turian planet Solregit, from which several characters hail. The planet is divided between the separatist northerners and Hierarchy-loyalist southerners.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • When the Alliance Eighth Fleet is ambushed at Ontarom by the Reapers, they take a few hits, but so far they're holding their ground. Then a Reaper dreadnought shows up and takes out the cruiser SSV Edmonton in a single shot.
    • Bitterskin's reaction to the yahg showing up on the forum.
    • At the climax of a plot that takes place over an in-character year, it's finally revealed that Cerastes wasn't working for the Rainmaker after all.
  • One Steve Limit: Averted. “Goronak” is such a prevalent batarian name that it’s become a racial slur. It actually means "second son"; it's so common as a name because the second son is blessed in traditional batarian culture, and many parents proudly name their second son "Goronak" to emphasis this.
  • Open Secret: Inconspicuous Organic was clearly a robust human specimen, not a form of synthetic intelligence.
  • Overprotective Dad:
    • Davril – though his is perhaps justified in that his daughter is a nigh-constant Distressed Damsel.
    • Upon finding out that a certain albino drell has started dating his surrogate daughter Shirin, Kirok drags Cerastes out to a bar and has a 'talk' with him. With a shotgun as the mediator.
  • Politeness Judo: When trying to convince a politician to come to a charity dinner, Laykalar the excitable hanar ends up talking to the man's staff. They try to get him to leave the conversation, but being too polite he can’t do that (or even take the hint). They grow desperate to get rid of him, and he thinks they’re being extra cooperative.
  • Porn with Plot: Illium-based ExtranetPlayground is pursuing this niche with some success. Their flagship trilogy Citadel XXX is 'based on real events' in-universe, thus serving as an homage/parody of Mass Effect itself.
  • Practical Joke:
  • Private Military Contractors: About a third of the cast are mercenaries.
  • Psycho for Hire: When most of the characters are mercenaries on a board created by a terrorist organization, this happens a lot. Lampshaded by some of the non-combatant members.
  • Punny Name: In the spirit of several quarian names from the Mass Effect series (vas Iktomi, etc.), we have Sarve'er nar Kolepsi.
  • Real Dreams Are Weirder: Branka’s dream about a hanar named Hot Dog handing out balloons and warning her about Japan. It became a moment of hilarity when Haseri’s player recorded a message based on the dream, and posted it in-character.
  • The Remnant:
    • Several neo-Cerberus groups have formed in the wake of the organization's dissolution.
    • The supposed existence of a "lost batarian empire" serves to inspire some batarian groups in the wake of the old Hegemony's collapse, giving them hope that a remnant of that Hegemony exists in a viable form.
    • Mason Barnette is one of the few survivors of the once infamously wealthy colony of Bekenstein, and works for a revival.
  • Replacement Scrappy: In-universe, the entire cast of The Life Egregious season five. Luckily Tethys Reave regeneratesnote  and kills them all during a live broadcast.
  • The Reveal: A quarian with the screenname 18/q/f shows up at the boards. Her attitude, writing style, and infatuation with Abattoir make everyone think that it's actually Suri in some Paper-Thin Disguise. It's actually 'One Classy Bloke' the volus trying to lure Suri out, and it works.
  • Rouge Angles of Satin: Orion suffers from this in "So a krogan walks into a bar..." when he attempts to contact Asharia via text after drinking two shots of batarian ale and eating krogan food.
    Son_of_Orion: ashria/sick/tuhaka's deligt/zakra ward/hlep
  • Running Gag: Very prevalent, very fluid. Examples include:
    • The squirrel infestation in old Nos Astra (spreading into New Nos Astra). Cerastes released hundreds of breeding pairs of squirrels as a vicious prank, and ever since threads and posts about Illium have tended to feature a nod or two to the infestation.
    • Diplomatic Immunity’s former habit of inviting new members of the forum for a “[redacted]”.
    • Cerberus projects going horribly wrong.
    • Pariah and the “slavery!” joke, an on-going gag at the expense of a character few of the other characters like.
    • The fact that no-one remembers what QoroQ is, despite the events of the arc having finally been made public. Usually someone will mention it only for most of the board to then ask "what's qoroq?" or state that QoroQ was a fictional character.
  • Scary Dogmatic Aliens: The Batarian Hegemony. One part antebellum slaveowners, one part goose stepping nazi, one part paranoid propaganda-spewing communist. Serve chilled. However, batarian space is in upheaval after the events of Mass Effect 3, and to some regard they're now The Alliance.
  • Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness: The hanar are often like this, given their religious devotion to language and formality. Laykalar is perhaps the best example.
  • Shaped Like Itself:
    Sklikos Gamic: The Truth of how the alien corrupters corrupted the Hierarchy with their corrupting Alienenss and how they control our glorious corrupted Hierarchy with alien corruption.
  • Shipper on Deck:
    • Suri'Neyvi was infamous for her fanfiction, in which illogical and sometimes questionably-consensual sex occurred between public figures or people known to her, for no particular reason. Examples include a Shepard/Illusive Man pairing and a piece with CDN's own Harrad and Gatrinex.
    • On the "straight trolling" front, Janice Proctor memorably mocked Lepantis Corvax with a short piece in which he had a steamy and loving encounter with Jorgal Dwick.
  • Show Within a Show: The Life Egregious was basically this; it also served to parody Cerberus Daily News itself, with many of the board's characteristics - the wackiness, the sociopathic and sadistic humour, the Rule of Cool - taken up to eleven, and with the sense of restraint and respect for the canon setting removed.
  • Silence, You Fool!: Grand Executor Menekhotep Tran'Darvas, on The Life Egregious begins almost every sentence with "Silence!"
  • Skyward Scream: Kirok, apparently, whenever Tethys Reave is mentioned.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism: The whole scale is explored, from beloved idealists like children's entertainer Uncle Garm Garm to the most pessimistic and brutal parts of galactic culture. The post-Reaper War period is potentially shaping up to be either complete hell or the beginning of a golden age, depending on who you ask. Such events as the curing of the genophage, the transition of the batarian government from Hegemony to Confederacy and the welcoming of both the geth and the rachni into the galactic community have divided characters considerably - are these changes for good or ill?
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Self-described Terminus warlords are often referred to in these terms by others. Modas Gomorrian, for example, is accused of this by some for his claim to be poised to take control of the Eagle Nebula.
  • Story Arc: Many, including:
    • Dynasty Maker: Salarian posters wind up as contestants on a controversial gameshow.
    • Who Goes There?, parts one and two: The Special Tasks Group enlists the board in an attempt to stop an Eldritch Abomination.
    • The Systems Alliance-Vies War: Members of CDN are present for (and help instigate) the start of a small-scale war.
    • The Hunt For Lydia: A respected board member is kidnapped, and the board helps track her down.
    • The Reaper War (of course).
  • Stupid Good: Iel’Verret is the nicest person on the boards, but he’s so painfully naïve he’d be a danger to himself.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: One of the first major characters, Inconspicuous Organic, was a robust human specimen and most certainly not an artificial intelligence.
  • Take That!:
    • The most prevalent example: The Life Egregious, or if you prefer, “How Not to Act at CDN.”
    • The fourth season in particular, which mercilessly parodies the controversy surrounding the ending of Mass Effect 3, with neither Bioware nor the fans spared ridicule.
  • Take Your Time: By player consensus, the events of Mass Effect 2 took two full years to complete.
  • Theme Naming:
  • Third-Person Person: Najhil Holken (a poorly-socialized raloi), as well as Flak, Skrat and Dreket (all vorcha). The hanar, of course, speak like this all the time, though they depersonalize themselves and never use their name. And some of the drell have adopted the hanars' use (or non-use) of pronouns.
  • Timeskip: The forum timeframe jumped forward one year after the conclusion of Mass Effect 3, giving the setting enough time to begin healing itself from the catastrophic last days of the Reaper War.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Cerastes had a thing for calzones. Until he ate one which had been poisoned.
  • Uncanny Valley: In-universe, the avatar used by Ana Sari. Upon seeing it, Terrorbyte starts freaking out, and many other posters agree that it's disturbing. Something about a face that is almost-but-not-quite Asari makes them very uncomfortable.
  • Uncoffee: Lesha. It’s only grown on a single world in the Terminus Systems. The Lesha trade is the cause of ongoing armed conflict and various other unpleasantness.
  • Unexplained Recovery: Several, including Wedeg Biigs, who seems to have survived being swallowed and digested by a sea monster.
  • Unusual Pets for Unusual People: Shadow Pyjak has, of course, a pyjak. But it’s a ridiculously fat and lazy pyjak, and she only acquired it when it was discovered already living in the apartment she shares with Branka.
  • Wham Episode:
    • May 5st, 2012 (2186 in-universe), when the Reaper invasion began in the forums.
    • The terrorist attack on Sur'Kesh in August 2013, which ended a period of relative calm in memorable fashion.
  • What Did I Do Last Night?: Julmoth and Diplomatic Immunity are very prone to this; the former once lost two weeks due to some really strong drugs and ended up on Earth with a bunch of human junkies and a volus prostitute.
  • What You Are in the Dark: The Chresk threads were a near perfect example of this, as you'd never know who would actually bet on the slaves being forced to fight to gain freedom until they do so.

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