As a series, Mass effect depends almost entirely on the choice. Role model or apostate? Red, blue or green? Pop or not pop? But Mass effect Occasionally seems to limit your ability to act. For example, at one point in the first game you are presented with a number of possibilities, and whichever path you take, you end up killing a seemingly fully conscious salarian. You have no say.
Spoilers for now Mass effectwho will be 14 years old in November.
After the release of last month Mass Effect Legendary Edition– a bundled collection that includes remastered versions of all three games from BioWare’s defining space RPG trilogy – I finally got around to playing through the first Mass effect. So far it has to be a McDonald’s Happy Meal, because i love it. But I raised an eyebrow during the main mission on a planet called Virmire.
Continue reading: Thoughts from A Mass effect 1 Newbie
An incredibly impractical series of events take place on Virmire. They hunt down Saren, the main villain, and follow an emergency call to the planet. You find a stranded group of Salarian soldiers, and what is it? Are you a skeleton crew because half of their contingent has been taken out? And there is no backup? It turned out that the just Plan for success is a suicide mission that you must assign to one of your teammates. Plus, there’s a cure for a devastating genetic disease that’s caught in the crossfire … and since this is a 2007 game, whatever outcome you prefer, you still have to tear it to pieces.
Towards the end of the mission, you will encounter a group of salarians locked in cages. Most of them are “indoctrinated”, their brains have been overwritten by the space magic of the reapers to such an extent that they have lost all knowledge and now act as mindless shells. Two are not quite gone yet. One of them appears fine, claiming to have been a control for the experiment, leaving his mind untouched. The other, a terrified salarian named Menos Avot … not so much. (Your teammates will literally notice that something is “wrong” if the game didn’t hold your hand enough during that time.) I decided to leave Avot in his cage, which was the right decision. Depending on your conversation choices, he will either attack you or run headlong into the door in a futile attempt to attack you. Rude, even to a salarian.
And then there is a salarian standing alone in a cage, as shown in the screenshot above. This salarian does not show the low moans of their indoctrinated comrades. You don’t say a word. They are just there, alone with their thoughts. Unlike the other two individual salaries, you won’t see a prompt to interact.
At first I honestly thought it was a bug. (Although Legendary edition offers refreshed versions of the first three Mass effect Games, like any modern game at all, it is still not entirely free of bugs. Funniest thing I found: flipping the mako completely prevents you from leaving the vehicle if you can’t open it) I reloaded my game. No dice. Still couldn’t start a conversation. I’ve consulted wikis and walkthroughs, looking for old forum posts. As far as I can tell, this salarian does not exist on the internet and, in question, does not exist in the world of Mass effect
Just because of their behavior (cool or at least resigned) and their situation (alone instead of in a group) one can assume that the lonely salarian is not completely indoctrinated. The scenario has all the trappings of having you play god in, as in so many others Mass effect Scenarios. But in this case there is nothing you can do. Too bad. I dawdled around for a while, looking for a way to make something, anything happen. In all honesty, I don’t know if I would have saved the poor guy. I would have to chat first.
I said goodbye to the unknown salarian, resumed the mission, blew up the facility, and set out to take a remarkable step towards saving the galaxy at the cost of a civilian sacrifice beyond my original calculations.
Hell, I didn’t even get Renegade points.