Mass Effect Re-Play: Citadel

Mass Effect Re-Play: Citadel

This is the a series where Brie will recap and review the hit video game trilogy, “Mass Effect”. New posts will be published every Thursday and she will weekly stream (unscheduled) on twitch.tv, posting notifications on Qwerty’s facebook and twitterWarning: These posts will be full of spoilers. You can start from the beginning here.

What Happened: 

After a brief interlude where Saren and Matriarch Benezia discuss their knowledge of your ship and the desire to find and destroy you,  you wake up in the medical bay with a headache. Doctor  Karin Chakwas and Kaidan are both there concerned for your well-being. They tell you that after you activated the beacon that it exploded and that you’ve been passed out for 15 hours. You try to explain your confusing vision when Captain Anderson shows up wanting to talk with you in private. He tells you that the Normandy is heading for the Citadel and that you’re going to have to explain everything to the council about Saren, your vision, and the Geth.

You arrive at the beautiful Citadel and meet with Ambassador Udina in his office in the embassies. You discuss with him what happened and are instructed to meet them at the Citadel Tower to brief the Council. Arriving at the tower you are informed that the meeting is already in session. You see that Saren is also there as a hologram and they are arguing over the semantics of what occurred. Saren is adamant that he was not on Eden Prime and not responsible for the attack. You trade barbs, but ultimately the Council decides that there isn’t sufficient evidence to take any action.

After reaching the consensus that your group needs to deal with him yourself, Kaidan suggests speaking with Garrus who you had overheard earlier arguing with Executor Pallin about ending their Saren investigation too soon. Anderson suggests you speak with a suspended C-Sec officer and drunkard, Harkin, who might be able to locate Garrus.

You leave Anderson and make your way down to the Wards, and into Choras Den and speak with Harkin, he tells you to look at a medical clinic on the other side of the Wards. Following Hakin’s lead you walk into the clinic where some of Fist’s thugs are threatening Doctor Michel. Garrus, previously hidden, takes the opportunity of your distracting entry to shoot the thug holding Michel, in the head. After dispensing with the rest of the enemies you learn that the Doctor had been treating a Quarian (we know to be Tali) who had information to trade and was interested in the Shadow Broker, the Doctor put Tali in touch with Fist, one of of the Shadow Broker’s agents.  Garrus corrects the Doctor and states that Fist has actually betrayed the Shadow Broker and is now working for Saren. Garrus surmises that Tali must have incriminating information on Saren which is why he would be willing to cross the Shadow Broker.

Garrus joins the team and suggests you recruit a Krogan named Wrex (a bounty hunter hired by the Shadow Broker) to help us go after Fist. Wrex, accused by Fist for making threats, is now at C-Sec Academy being held for questioning. We make our way to the academy and introduce ourselves to Wrex. Realizing we have a common goal he joins the team as well.

Making our way back to Chora’s Den we discover that it  is now crawling with Fist’s hired help and shoot our way through them to find Fist himself who gives up pretty quickly. He tells us that the Quarian is currently set to meet with who she was told would be the Shadow Broker, but is actually Saren’s men. If we don’t make it in time she’ll be lost! A clock starts counting down and you have to shoot your way back out of the club and back into the ally behind the wards to find Tali in the middle of a meeting gone wrong and proves to be pretty self sufficient without your intervention in the attack.

We’re finally introduced to Tali’Zoah nar Rayya and discover that her incriminating evidence is an audio file that has Saren’s voice discussing the attack on Eden Prime, and their search for something called the Conduit.

We decide to bring this to Udina and Anderson right away, and back at the Embassies Tali tells them her story and plays the recording. It includes an unrecognizable female voice as well that lets slip the ultimate plan of bringing back the Reapers. Tali tells us that the Reapers are revered by the Geth as god like synthetic life and that they were responsible for wiping out the Protheans 50,000 years ago. Suddenly your confusing visions make sense and you realize that the message from the beacon was actually a warning about the Reapers and their possible return.

It’s decided that this is enough evidence to bring before the Council to discredit Saren at the very least, even if the Reaper story isn’t fully developed.

Back with the Council they agree that the audio file proves Saren is a traitor and he is stripped of his Spectre status, although he is conveniently holographically absent at this meeting. The Asari councilor is also able to identify the female voice as Matriarch Benezia. The Council however, is hesitant to give credit to the Reaper information and are also is unwilling to provide any fleets to go after Saren. You voice that you will go after him yourself and it’s decided that it’s time to raise you up to Spectre status so that you can have the power and authority to pursue this threat without the Council actually having to provide resources.

Being the first human Spectre (besides for Anderson briefly which we only get half stories about) is a big deal and Udina and Anderson leave you to go prepare your crew and ship and supplies for your mission. You visit the suggested requisitions officer in C-Sec with your new Spectre status for supplies, and then go up to the dock and meet Udina and Anderson again.

Anderson informs you that he has decided to step down as Captain of the Normandy and is handing it over to you believing it to be the perfect ship for your mission, and for a Spectre.

Udina and Anderson give you several leads for where to start in your search for Saren, but says that it is up to you to decide these things now. Udina takes a moment to remind you that even though you are, for all intents and purposes, above the law, you are still human, and any mess you make, he will have to clean up.

They leave you to your ship and your quest and you enter the Normandy and give a rousing speech to the crew.

Quote of the Day:

“My people have a saying. Seek the enemy of your enemy, and you will find a friend.” - Wrex

This is of course a common proverb that is present in many cultures and languages (in real life), but this quote resonates particularly for the entirety of this series. Geth and Qunari, Salarian and Krogan, we all join forces against the common threat. The greatest threat.

Commentary: 

Okay, can we talk about the Keepers for a second? I always accept this task, and so far, I have never completed it. I always end with 20 scanned, instead of the full 21. I just give up looking! I know there are walkthroughs and guides available that will tell me where every single one is, but so far my brief once overs have not helped. Maybe I’ll find them all this time. I already know quest ends, so it’s not very important, but I guess it’s the journey that counts this time.

I also always forget to put Ashley in my party before talking with the guy who wants his wife’s dead body. Because I’m so partial to Kaidan, and basically anti Ashley, I never have her in my group again after getting Garrus as a teammate. I have no idea what happens if I do have her with me. Maybe they just have a poignant interaction.

On the topic of Ashley, I’ll clarify quickly why she becomes underused (and then when we come to it I’ll also talk about why she’ll always die) but I really do feel she’s a space racist. I hear that she grows a bit, but my interaction with her initially is so unfavorable, that I can’t get the sour taste out of my mouth. I also hear that her character doesn’t develop as well as Kaidan’s does through the game, but I’ll try to reserve judgement on that until I see more evidence. I guess Ashley just quickly turns into someone I don’t really want around, and I think that also reflects on the people that I have in my life. Maybe she’s too real of a character? Maybe she’s so fleshed out that she reminds me of people I know and am uncomfortable with? Hmm, I think I need to explore these ideas more as I continue this play through.

BUT! – I love this Citadel. Everything changes after the end of this game, and I enjoy being back here, visiting the familiar sites, walking the familiar paths. I like the endless elevator rides with the odd banter and informative news reports. I also enjoy meeting so many new and wonderful friends in such a short amount of time.

One of the things that irritates me about this portion of the game is how inarticulate the options are for Shepherds arguments against Saren and about Eden Prime. She comes of as petty and argumentative and makes it appear personal against Saren opposed to providing facts that can support their case. I think I have issues with most of the dealings around the council, especially in the second and third game in result to your decisions at the end of ME1.

Next week we’ll rescue Liara and get some time in the muther effing MAKO!

 

 

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Brie

Brie is a fair-weather foodie. She wouldn’t go as far as to say she has a love/hate relationship with food, because she loves food and food clearly loves her; it loves her so much that it holds on as tight as it can and never lets go; mostly in the middle region. Her cooking style involves a lot of butter or garlic or onions, things that have “creamy” or “cheesy” in the title, also anything that you could add bacon to. She’s been making the noms since she was tall enough to reach the counter, and has been eating for even longer*. Brie’s passion for cooking-slash-baking will fluctuate however, usually correlating with how sick she is of doing dishes. Never-the-less, her passion for eating (sushi, take out Chinese, hole in the wall diner-y type foods) is as constant as the sun, the moon, death, and taxes. She also sometimes talks in the third person; don’t worry, you’ll get used to it.
*Fun Fact: When she was 10-13ish, only 1 out of every 5 batches of sugar cookie dough would make it past the butter/sugar stage and end up in the oven instead of Brie’s stomach. #ThisIsWhyI’mFat
P.S. She also set the microwave on fire during the same era while making home-made microwavable popcorn. Pro tip: Alton Brown is WRONG and you cannot put a paper bag with staples into the microwave; things will go badly.
P.P.S Happy ending. Even though to put out the fire she threw a bowl of water onto it and shorted all the circuits, the microwave started working after a week and her mom was non-the-wiser.
P.P.P.S But, I guess not any longer…

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