Hi fellow Mass Effect acolytes, I decided to look into another aspect of the series from a more personal level, focusing on the subtle moments I found particularly interesting. These events don't usually get the attention that those tying into the main campaign would receive, since they usually happen behind the scenes during lighthearted moments in Mass Effect 3. I thought I'd choose my favorites and share them with my readers in no particular order; feel free to disagree or offer your own and comment below. Note that given the context of this blog, spoilers will be present, so only read if you've beaten the game already.


6) Tali's drunken binge

Tequila se'lai!

Hands-down, I consider this one of the funniest scenes in Mass Effect 3. I thought I'd seen everything, but a Quarian drunk? Hearing Tali slur her words and continue to refer to a straw as an "emergency induction port" while harping about the "Cerberus cheerleader" Miranda was entertaining; Tali simultaneously having a drunken epiphany about her own personal duties is what sold the moment however. In addition to this, later hearing Tali drunk-dial Javik as he dryly reminded her about the dangers of intoxication was equally charming.


5) Target Practice on the Presidium

I'm Garrus Vakarian and this is now my favorite spot on the Citadel!

Once players reach a certain point in the game's narrative, Garrus would contact them and ask Shepard to meet him for something. In this case, a chance to shoot bottles in a restricted area in the Presidium while cars whizzed above them; those in a relationship with Garrus were treated to a pretty unconventional date. After admiring the scenery and the friendship they'd established however, players could choose to one-up Garrus in a showdown of skills, or give Garrus the upper hand and allow him to win. I chose, in the first time I played through the game, to give Garrus the winning shot and watched as he stole the trademark meme Shepard used each time players endorsed a store for a discount. A moment like this provided much-needed relief from the hectic and morbid action of the main storyline.


4) Culture Shock (Conversations with Javik)

If you haven't been reading my blogs, I'll let you know from the start: Javik's my favorite character in Mass Effect 3. His tsundere personality gives us a vital new understanding of the Protheans while providing us the needed foil to each of the characters we've known for so long, especially the naïve Liara, and his various comments on the inferiority that the Council races once possessed never ceases to amuse me. One of the primary highlights involves his discussion with Liara during the mission on Thessia, when he gives her a rude awakening regarding the true history of the Asari race as she recounts their old beliefs; on Sur'kesh, he casually mentions in a conversation with Wrex that Salarian livers were once a delicacy. He certainly isn't what one would consider a likable character to be, but his candid and shameless confidence makes him one I can't help but respect. Nothing gets boring with him, making Javik a mainstay in my squad.


3) Fleet and Flotilla (Garrus and Tali's secret fling)

Mordin once said that intense stress often causes people to react certain ways sexually; who would have thought we'd see someone other than Shepard romancing a squadmate? Players who weren't romancing either Tali or Garrus could eventually walk into the main battery and catch the two snuggled up together. The embarrassed couple would then play the moment off before finally acknowledging it. However, it wasn't over yet; the two started flirting and I couldn't help but burst out in laughter as I heard Tali utter a line that seemed more fitting for a dominatrix, and Garrus, being the awesome bro he is, joined in on the role play. I don't think I'll ever look at those two the same again. Watch the clip here.


2) PT with James Vega

Most people don't warm up to the guy very much, but James Vega is a far more interesting character than I'd expected, since Shepard plays the role of a mentor in this situation. I found these conversations with him introduced a friendship that made my Shepard actually feel influential on a level just as personal as they did publically, especially when I counseled James regarding his N7 decision. Then, there were those times I'd watch him splurge dozens of credits in poker games, banter with Cortez and Garrus, or fail at trying to flirt with Femshep. He was a well-rounded fellow and it was great to have a character you could form a platonic relationship with.


1) Liara's Gift

Liara's Gift. This is a moment I nearly devoted an entire blog to, but decided against it, and it's relatively simple. Once Shepard finally returned to Earth, Liara merged her mind with Shepard one final time and showed Shepard a vision; this happens whether you romance her or not. In it, the two stood beside each other in a dark atmosphere filled with twinkling stars, and watched as a bright light glowed in the distance and eventually engulfed them. Considered to be a parting gift given by Asari to those they've befriended, I naturally took quite a bit of time scavenging through the codex for any possible hints.

One of the first things that struck me about this moment was a statement Matriarch Benezia had made before she passed, about a light that was supposed to be seen before death; I learned in their religious views - Siari specifically - that the Asari believe that all life is part of a greater consciousness, and that in death one returns to this existence.  In this case, I imagined the light overwhelming Shepard and Liara to reflective of this state; thus in a sense, one could see this event as one that is sad. Yet, I saw peace and hope in the moment; I felt Shepard had finally accepted the fate awaiting them, and was prepared to fight for those they cared about, no matter what the consequences could've been. Shepard had gone through far more than the average human could have ever anticipated, and formed bonds with people that were incapable of being destroyed. In essence Liara's gift became the resolve I needed to make the final push against the Reapers and eventually succeed. I still consider this to be one of the most important scenes in the story.