This entry in the 30 Days of Mass Effect series covers a subject I never really delved into during my last blog series covering Mass Effect: the introduction of a popular new gameplay convention that enhanced the stellar conversation system of Mass Effect by allowing players to make either Paragon or Renegade actions at key moments in certain scenes. In this blog, I’ll take the time to revisit my favorite moments where Paragon interrupts were used, whether in Mass Effect 2 or 3. Feel free to sound in at the end of this blog! Spoiler’s ahoy, so beware if you haven’t played.


7) Saving Kal’Reegar

This Paragon interrupt can be found during the Haestrom mission in Mass Effect 2, during the final climactic battle against a Geth platoon. Kal’Reegar, a Quarian marine who’s partly injured, offers to provide the necessary cover fire so Shepard can reach a Geth Colossus and destroy it. However, Shepard can encourage him to maintain cover instead of fighting recklessly. Doing this will guarantee Kal’Reegar’s survival, whereas not insisting that he be careful may result in his death if Shepard takes too long to kill the Colossus. After getting to know Kal’Reegar later on, I felt glad that I’d made this decision.



6) The Freelancer

This Paragon interrupt happens during Mass Effect 2, and is one that I enjoy using regardless of my personality alignment. You’ll eventually run into a young fella shortly after registering for the Archangel mission on Omega. Before you leave, you get the chance to persuade the kid to avoid enlisting, yet like all knuckleheads, he’s determined to prove himself. The solution? Break his gun, easily guaranteeing you won’t end up killing the poor noob later on once you begin your mission to track down Archangel. You even get to do a little galactic community service!



5) Crime In Progress

This occurs in the Citadel; in this case, Shepard can overhear a Volus arguing with a Quarian over missing credit chits while a C-Sec officer handles the case; both hold extremely prejudiced views of the Quarian. After offering to participate in the search for the Volus’ missing credit chits, Shepard finds them, returns them to the Volus, who continues to hold prejudiced suspicions about the Quarian. Even the C-Sec officer threatens her with a warning. At this moment, players can use a Paragon interrupt to yell some sense into both of them; the finishing touch however, was when Shepard flipped the Spectre card on the haughty C-Sec officer like a true bad***. Finally, a Paragon action with some bite to its bark.



4) Memorial Wall

In Mass Effect 3, there’s a lot of understated moments that players are treated to by interacting with the characters in the story, and in this situation, players are given the chance to comfort Cortez as he finally prepares to let go of the grief he has for the death of his husband. While I found the general setup in itself to be a bit contrived, I did appreciate this moment in the story, since we get to choose to be the support Cortez needs and give him the strength to move on in his life.



3) Sins of the Father

This Paragon interrupt is a favorite of mine, because it shows Shepard doing something other than hugging a person or giving them medigel – you get a lot of those. Instead, you can use this interrupt during Thane’s loyalty mission once you reach Talid’s apartment, where Kolyat is holding him hostage. Shepard has the chance to shoot a lamp, distracting the would-be assassin long enough to disarm him. It took a while to process the first time I saw it due to how fast it happened, and afterward I was glad that players finally had a way to defuse a tough situation without coming off as a jerk or without having to spend most of their time talking.



2) Sparing Sidonis

This was probably one of the hardest choices I made while playing Mass Effect 2. This Paragon interrupt becomes available during Garrus’ loyalty mission and allows you to move into Garrus’ line of sight while you speak with Sidonis. You can also save Sidonis with another Paragon interrupt in what quickly becomes the tensest conversation in Mass Effect 2. While a remarkably tough choice to make, I nonetheless got a lot more entertainment and drama out of it instead of going the cheap route, which took a much needed element of depth out of the final part of the mission.



1) Tali’s Death

This Paragon interrupt is found in Mass Effect 3, and is part of one of the saddest – and in this case, bittersweet – moments in the game: Tali’s death, provided you spared the Geth instead of the Quarians. In this case, Tali apologizes, stricken with grief now that her entire race has been obliterated, and walks toward a cliff to commit suicide. Players can use the interrupt to reach out to Tali, but it never saves her. Instead, we watch helplessly as she falls to her doom. This interrupt is unique in that it carries a lot of emotional weight and really helps the player connect with Shepard during the tragic event, causing them to feel the consequences of their actions in a way that successfully connects with the player, making it my favorite Paragon interrupt of the game.


Which Paragon Interrupts are your favorites?