Mass Effect: 10 Things You’ll Only Know If You Read The Comics

The deep and complex universe of Mass Effect isn’t solely contained within the games. Several other pieces of media also help enhance the lore of the world, including the comics.

There have been six comic series as well as several single-issues. None of them follow the adventures of Shepard or Ryder. Instead, they put the focus on other characters in the galaxy. And they do a fantastic job at filling in gaps of the story and expanding on certain big events. Thus, while reading through them, you find out some interesting things that the games never address. Here’s a collection of the best ones.

10 Aria T’Loak Knew That The Collectors Were Targeting Humans Before Shepard

In Mass Effect 2, the revelation that the Collectors are targeting human colonies is big news. Not everyone in the universe is surprised, though. Aria, for instance, already knows the creatures are after humans.

She finds out in Mass Effect: Incursion when the Asari and her bodyguards break-up a slave deal on Omega. The deal in question is between the Blue Suns and the Collectors. After Aria has put a stop to it, she finds a datapad that lists the places the monsters are targeting. All of which are locations that contain a significant amount of humans, including Earth.

9 Not All Salarians Have Thin Frames

Throughout the games, you meet plenty of Salarians. Each one varies in personality and intelligence, but something they all have in common is their appearance. They all have tiny thin frames. And their warriors need to use their brains instead of brawn to keep up with bigger combatants.

However, Mass Effect: Evolution shows that not every member of the race has a small body. The Salarian known as Tazzik appears as an antagonist in the comic, and he’s huge. The bulking mercenary tries to retrieve and sell Shepard’s body on behalf of The Shadow Broker. Unfortunately for him, though, he comes up against one of the galaxy’s most powerful Asari in Liara.

8 Mordin Nearly Sacrificed Himself On Tuchunka Long Before Mass Effect 3

Mordin’s sacrifice in Mass Effect 3 is among the most tearjerking moments in gaming history. He does so to spread the Genophage cure across Tuchanka. However, it’s not the first time he attempts to sacrifice himself on the homeworld of the Krogan.

The other occasion is depicted in issue nine of Mass Effect: Foundation where he and STG travel to the planet to release the modified Genophage. The covert mission doesn’t go well, though, as their presence is uncovered. Mordin is then ordered to retreat, but he ignores his Commanding Officer and tries to complete the mission anyway. He’s nearly blown-up because of his actions. The resulting scars are visible in the games.

7 Maya Brooks Has Had A Difficult Life

In some fan’s minds, Mass Effect 3: Citadel is the best expansion the series offers. Maya Brooks deserves some credit for that as she serves as a strong villain throughout the DLC. Yet, you won’t know her well if you haven’t read the Foundation series of comics.

It turns out that her immoral behavior likely comes from the difficult life she’s lead. Firstly, she serves as a slave during her youth and is forced to work in the mines. Then when she grows up, the woman joins Cerberus. Unfortunately, she’s not treated too well by the organization, which is most evident when she’s poisoned during a mission, and nobody really cares. It’s no wonder she’s so angry.

6 Tiran Kandros Went Undercover In The Andromeda Initiative

Once you finally make it to the Nexus in Mass Effect: Andromeda, Tiran Kandros is among the first faces you see. He’s the head of the Nexus security and an overall important member of the Initiative. The story of how he ended up traveling to Andromeda in the first place is an interesting one but it’s only told during the Discovery comic series.

Tiran initially infiltrates the Initiative to uncover a secret plot within. But during his time with Jien Garson and her people, he becomes drawn to the adventure. Mostly he sees it as a chance to step out of his family’s shadow.

5 Tali Didn’t Travel To The Citadel Alone

When you meet Tali for the first time in the games, she’s being hunted by assassins. At the time, she seems like a lonely Quarian struggling to survive on the Citadel. Yet, the second issue of Homeworlds shows that she didn’t travel to the space station on her own.

In the comic, she teams with a fellow Quarian named Keenah’Breizh as they try to escape a ruthless Turian mercenary. Keenah’Breizh gets severely wounded, though, then perishes on the Citadel. The entire comic serves as a compelling origin story about one of the game’s most beloved companions.

4 Jack Fought Kai Leng

Both Jack and Kai Leng are among the most powerful humans in the series. The two never cross paths in the games, but they do in the comics. During Foundation Issue Seven, the Psychotic Biotic and the Cerberus agent go head to head as the former is trying to escape a Cerberus facility.

In the battle, Kai Leng doesn’t land a blow. His outstanding acrobatics are no match for Jack’s extreme biotic power. Although, she isn’t given much time to celebrate as the Blue Suns apprehend her shortly afterward.

3 Garrus Had Accepted Death On Omega Before Shepard’s Arrival

After the events of the first game, everyone’s favorite companion Garrus becomes a vigilante on Omega. In the process, he becomes a target for every merc group on the station, who work together to bring him down. He ends up trapped in his hideout, fighting for his life.

Issue three of Homeworlds adds more insight into what he is feeling during that moment. It turns he’s not exactly optimistic about his chances of survival. So, he makes an emotional call to his father to make amends before he no longer has the opportunity. Thankfully, at the end of the conversation, he spies a familiar set of N7 armor, and he knows he’ll be okay.

2 A Moment Of Insubordination Led To Joker Becoming The Normandy Pilot

Jeff ‘Joker’ Moreau talks about his past quite a bit in the original title. However, he never explains how he became the pilot of the Normandy. After all, the ship is a very expansive state-of-the-art vessel of Turian and Human design. Therefore, they weren’t going to let just anyone take the helm.

Well, Joker earns the celebrated position by stealing the ship and locking himself in the cockpit. He then takes the thing through its paces while Captain Anderson orders him to be shot down. In the end, a Turian General named Invectus is so impressed with the pilot’s talents that they make him the helmsman. The tale is told within Mass Effect: He Who Laughs Best.

1 The Illusive Man’s Eyes Glow Because Of An Artifact

Throughout the games, there’s plenty of mystery surrounding the Illusive Man. All you really know about him is that he’s the leader of Cerberus, and he’s evil. Mass Effect: Evolution, though, reveals a lot more about the sharp-dressed man. One of the most interesting things concerns the man’s eyes.

The reason they look so inhuman is because of an incident he has with a mysterious artifact. He and his allies find the item during the first contact war. And when his friend gets close, the artifact hits the guy with a large amount of energy. The future Illusive man tries to help him, which leaves him with permanently altered eyes. Although, it’s a better fate than his friend, who transforms into a husk.

NEXT: Mass Effect: Ranking The Trilogy’s 10 Most Evil & Villainous Characters

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Ben Jessey spends all his time playing video games, watching TV, watching movies, watching football aka soccer (which I guess counts as watching TV) or writing about those things. He has a degree in Film and Television studies and is now a freelance writer.

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