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I'm Commander Shepard, and these are my favorite fan fics on the internet.

Proof that the remaining 10% is worth dying for here.

These are recommendations made by Tropers for Mass Effect fanfics, all of which have to be signed to stay on the page. Feel free to add a fanfic of your own to the list, but remember to use the template found here.

Do warn when a fanfic may head into non-canon territory. Some people just don't like it, and as we all know, Shipping is Serious Business. Please also be aware that, due to recent content policy changes, works that are Porn Without Plot may not be linked to, including any work that is hosted on a certain meme.

You can also add to the current recommendations if you want. Refrain from posting Conversation in the Main Page though; that goes in the discussion page.

Authors and Websites

Authors, and Websites


  • Recommended by User:Echo Garrote, Damsel of Distress, Spark Moon, Universitas, Joysweeper, Estelindis, User:Lavanya Six
  • Writer of the excellent Iunctio fic, mentioned below, as well as the Wrex fic also under her name. She also has written several more fic expanding her own version of the Mass Effect universe. Some fluff, an excellent story that happened between the two games that features Cerberus as the antagonists. She has recently finished writing her fic for the sequel called Exitus, which has the same superior quality of Inuctio, including a POV from Legion that's unique, in character, and brilliant.
    • Spark Moon: Indeed. 'Exitus' is especially remarkable, as it handles elements from the sequel in a very thoughtful and mature manner, especially into comparison with other post-Horizon fix fics. I would also like to add that her Shepard is a diamond in the rough and the enormous gravitas of the situation -Horizon included- is handled with a certain believability that is greatly welcomed in the fandom. I also have to give her major praise for having the guts to kill off characters like Jack, Zaeed and Thane in Exitus, which is sure to fly in the face of a reader who hopes for a No Man Left Behind-esque ending. Her sole Dragon Age story -focusing on a criminally overlooked character- is worth noting too.
    • Joysweeper: Seriously, Sinvraal is by far my favorite Mass Effect writer. She writes the scenes I like most, in-between scenes, and main scenes through the eyes of someone who has different perspectives; she never writes from Shepard's perspective, allowing the Commander to be all mysterious; calls Shepard Shepard instead of her first name; and I like her crew interactions and the way she writes biotics. The only complaint I have is Kelly Chambers. Felt kind of out of left field. If Drew Karpyshyn turned writing the Mass Effect books over to her, I wouldn't mind much.
    • Estelindis: Agreed with all the above. Sinvraal keeps the characters true to their origins while adding vastly more detail and depth. Yet she does this without going on an information overload. Every little aspect is carefully chosen, and together they create an incredible effect (like a mosaic). While I enjoy Drew's novels, I find her writing style superior in nearly every way (praise for Sinvraal, not scorn for Drew). She happens to be quite happy working at her current job, but I would be delighted if a writing job opened up at Bioware that she was able and willing to take.

If You Were Commander Shepard

  • Recommended by User:Meshakhad
  • A thread consisting of people writing their own dialogue for Mass Effect. Runs the gamut from lampshading plot holes to creating moments of pure awesome. Not all are good, but many are excellent.

The Wacky Fun-time Audio Thread

  • Recommended by LoganLee88, pcy623, User:Firebert
  • A hysterical NSFW thread with edited audio from Mass Effect 2. With pairings such as Male Shepard/Zaeed, Miranda/Jack, Grunt/Tali, Tali/Legion, Jacob/Kasumi and Thane/Samara, it's bound to put you in stitches if you aren't already uncomfortable hearing their "getting shot" audio as Immodest Orgasm. The way the creator pieced dialogue from the game together is more banter than you can find in the original game. Besides that, the thread includes Easter Eggs: cut audio from Mass Effect 2.
    • pcy623: That gave me the giggles.
    • User:Firebert: Rite of Pasage made me laugh out loud. "And he's a big one." "Impressive!"

The Bioware Big Bang

  • Recommended by Ghastdream
  • Section of Mass Effect Fanart and Fanfic from the Bioware Big Bang Challenge.


  • Recommended by Firebert
  • Tumblr that features some hilarious drawings featuring Javik. Warning: Contains ME 3 spoilers.

The Unofficial Mass Effect Epilogue Slides

  • Recommended by S1duri, DudeL, brodyaga
  • Fan-made epilogue generator for Mass Effect 3
    • DudeL: I highly endorse this. I know at first the ending leaves a bad taste because of the amount of sacrifice and uncertainty but it still leaves a large opportunity for hope in the universe. This little endeavor shows how feasible that hope is and that the game isn't Ruined FOREVER. Might give an idea for what the Extended Cut will be like.

Best at Everything

  • Recommended by ADHD_Pyro, User:USA Bobcat
  • Synopsis: Shepard recruited the best in the universe for his campaign against the Collectors. This includes...
    • ADHD_Pyro: From the twisted minds over at Space Battles comes a veritable cornucopia of crossovers with everything imaginable. In particular, their fusion of Mass Effect 2 with Metal Gear Solid is incredibly well done.
    • User:Masked And Dangerous: As one of the writers on this thread, I can die happy now knowing something I contributed to got a recommendation on this site.

General Fics

General Fics

Stories focused on the family and the friendly relationships of the cast. Plot-focused stories or light day-in-the-life stories. Pretty much anything that isn't focused on romance.

Harvest by Nuts!

  • Recommended by Gore17, hodaza, User:USA Bobcat, User:Jonn
  • Synopsis: "Was that the first time a geth asked it if had a soul?" "No. It was the first time a Creator became frightened when we asked."
  • Comments: Words can not do this fic justice. Read it and remember why you love fanfic.
    • Seconded
    • User:USA Bobcat: Just a oneshot, but a very well done oneshot. Makes you feel the separation between geth and quarian quite well, and somehow reminds me of a mother and her children. If you like either the geth or the quarians, read this. It will remind you why you still comb through archives of fanfiction, for the elusive works of quality.

Renegade Reinterpretations by College Fool

  • Recommended by Angelof Blood, Grant[1]
  • Synopsis: This fic is one massive AU Fic, in which Relay 314 was discovered by the Batarians, not the Turians, and humanity, and the galaxy are radically changed, forever. To quote the first chapter, "This is the darkest century of human history. This is the catalyst that changed and defined the Human race as it emerged upon the galactic stage. This is not a happy story, or a story of glory, or even a particularly pleasant one. It is, at heart, a Renegade's story, of one race rising up defying a galaxy's expectations."
  • Comments: Words cannot describe the fic. It just has to be read to be believed. It's dark, and will toss your already conceived viewpoints out the window. It's obvious that the author did a LOT of thinking about consequences, and how they will affect the universe in general.
    • YMMV - be warned this isn't a traditional fic but more like a history book of an alternate universe, with no real dialogue or characterizations.
    • It also has a very interesting re-imagining of the Suicide Mission. Here, it's not possible to save everyone like it is in the real ME2, but each character has more opportunities to show off their badassery.
    • A curious thought experiment, with realistic reactions and details that makes humanity truly terrifying in a galaxy that is increasingly insane and brutal. Imagine a bit of Warhammer 40000, Mass Effect, Star Wars, and give all of those an underdog mentality and you'd gave something not unlike this story.

Order Upon Chaos by Sudentor

  • Recommended by owlbot
  • Synopsis: The publication of the Precipice Archives Report for the Third Citadel detailing the events since five billion years ago, how the attempt to save life led to its cyclic destruction, and how this affected the galaxy five billion years later.
  • Comments: Written in the form of salvaged transcripts, documents, and messages recovered almost a millennium after the events of Mass Effect 3, Order Upon Chaos chronicles the origin of the Reapers, explaining how they went from a democratic body trying to save one civilization after another, to Well-Intentioned Extremists, to Cosmic Horrors. The story is difficult to pick up at first, for the transcripts can be dense, confusing, and not immediately obvious, but it rolls elegantly along once it truly picks up speed, and gracefully shows how the initial, desperate attempt to ensure life goes on in the galaxy slowly transforms into the horrifying cycles of extinction we associate with the Reapers today, as well as the beginnings of the enigmatic characters Harbinger and the Catalyst.

Accidental Hero of the Galaxy by Random Equinox

  • Recommended by Bufu, Deep Recon, Mavado
  • Synopsis: Commander Shepard. Hero of the Skyllian Blitz. First human Spectre. Kleptomaniac Hero Potential savior of humanity and the known galaxy. Pity no one asked him what HE thought of all this.
  • Comments: If you're already familiar with and enjoyed the Ciaphas Cain books set in the Warhammer40k universe, you should enjoy this fic as well. It's sets up Shepard as a pragmatic soul that always wants to paint himself as a self-serving Fake Ultimate Hero with good luck for getting into escalating scraps-- all the while showing extraordinary heroism that belays his self-deprecation. The internal monologue is quite funny, lampshading many of the game's somewhat nonsensical situations. Furthermore, the interactions between the squad members is a joy to read, seeing their relationships grow from strained to a band of brothers forged in battle. I'm surprised nobody had already posted this one-- especially the Warhammer40k/ME fans among us that I see enjoyed Dreadnaught!Shepard in Iron Rebirth below. --Bufu
    • One of the biggest appeals of the Ciaphas Cain series was how readers could see perfectly well why Cain was revered as a hero, but his internal monologues and thoughts make it clear that he doesn't want anything to do with that sort of reputation. Accidental Hero of the Galaxy follows in the same vein: Shepard is clearly rolling along the Paragon path, but his every decision is clearly influenced by his desire to keep his own hide safe while making sure people don't grow to revile him. Similarly, both Cain and Shepard have a clearly lower opinion of themselves than they ought to, as acknowledge by Amberly and Anderson, respectively. Cain and Shepard are generally motivated by self-preservation, but there are times when they're clearly acting genuinely heroic and try to write it off as more of the same. Their desire to be innocuous is so strong that they'll deny heroism even when it isn't accidental, also playing to the great flaw that both characters have rather low self-esteem. --Deep Recon
    • And now, there's a sequel.
    • A bit of Fridge Brilliance-- Shepard in this fic is an Infiltrator. Think about how that class fights... and how it fits perfectly with his character.
    • YMMV. It can be interesting, but the primary appeal of Ciaphas Cain is not only the Fake Ultimate Hero that is zig-zagged, but also the over the top nature of Warhammer40k being Lampshaded. Cain being a good commissar instead of a Bad Boss, Inquisitor Vail being competent, etc. Without those elements, the fic is enjoyable, but (arguably) not to the same degree that the Ciaphas Cain series is.

Cause and Effect by Raven Studios

  • Recommended by pyrotorch246, User:Randomfanboy
  • Synopsis: "Pre-Mass Effect. Jalissa Shepard meant to stay a farmer on Mindoir after high school. And then the batarians came. 100 prompts. 1000 words. From Mindoir, through basic, to Elysium, to just before boarding the Normandy. Snapshots of Shepard's life." --official Summary by author. Pretty much as written.
  • Comments:Literally a bunch of 1000 word vignettes interspaced throughout Shepard's life from Mindoir to right before the beginning of the game. Exceptionally well written. Now has a sequel concerning the events of the first game, with plans to continue the series through the end of Mass Effect 3.
    • Fair warning - this is dark. Jalissa Shepard is one of the biggest Iron Woobies I've ever read, and the other characters in the sequel series all become even bigger woobies than they already are. It's definitely not bad, but reading it all in one go can push you across the Despair Event Horizon.

Newton's First Law by Raven Studios

  • Recommended by pyrotorch246
  • Synopsis: A sequel to Cause and Effect that picks up with Shepard's transfer to the Normandy and covers the first game.
  • Comments: This fic is in the same style as it's predecessor--1000 word chapters that are something of a slice of life look at Shepard and her crew as they go through the events of the original Mass Effect. At 246 chapters, it has definitely reached Doorstopper status.

The Distress Call by Knightfall1138

  • Recommended by User:Tillian
  • Synopsis: Many decisions lie ahead. Most of them pointless.
  • Comments: A nice parody about the trailer where Shepard turns away the distress call from Noveria. We see off-camera behind the scenes as the victims of Noveria tried to make sense with the rejection, as they are being bombed to death while Shepard was busy picking up minerals at his leisure.

Mass Effect: Iron Rebirth by Mashadar

  • Recommended by: Alamo, Joysweeper
  • Synopsis: Shepard's revival is necessarily much earlier than canon, and the only way it can be done is by putting his functional brain into a YMIR mech chassis, with all the baggage that implies.
  • Comments: You know, when I recommend a fic, the highest praise I can give it is that even though I may not be a fan of what it's based of of, I still enjoyed the fic. This is one of those. I have never played either of the Mass Effect games and have only a passing knowledge of the universe, but still found this to be a great read. The writing is competent, the dialogue well written, the key ploy point intriguing, and the storyline well done. I highly recommend this.
    • Hnn. I felt like this got off to a very promising start - I'm a sucker for Brain In a Jar - but as the chapters went on the grammatical mistakes, overuse of names in conversations, and run-on sentences started to get to me. Besides, the recurring talk of this permanence started annoying me - what, is it so hard to put fingers on these mechs? I'll look for further chapters, but I have a sense of wasted potential here.

Mock Effect by Mister Buch

  • Recommended by User:Tillian, User:Firebert
  • Synopsis: Jane Shepard was being promoted as a 'Sub-Spectre' much to her humiliation as her psychotic brother John Shepard was promoted as a Spectre. She have to save the galaxy from not only the incompetent, unoriginal villains like Saren and Unicron... sorry Sovereign, but also from her crazy ass brother from trashing up the galaxy with his try hard Renegade attitude.
  • Comments: A nice parody that digs deep into plot-holes, cliche, spotlighting the flaws like how the renegade options are blatantly childish and bad textured load ups. This parody was so popular there's a 10 page dedication to this fan fiction on the official Mass Effect forums before the moderators shut it down due to bad server technology. Sadly it's in script format so the webmasters of the had to take it down much to the fans annoyance. Fortunately one of the fans jumped in to save the day by creating a another Mass Effect fan fiction site for Mr. Buch to host it. You can still check it out by clicking on the above link.
    • Not a good idea to read it if you like... any of the characters, really. The author seems to hate them all.
      • Except for Kaidan.
        • No, Kaidan gets it too. He's a complete idiot, like every other character.
    • I personally found the story to be little more than an annoying Revenge Fic.
    • This editor disagrees, it's a humorous story, you don't have to hate the game to find it funny.
    • The sheer number of details mocked suggest that the author played the game in depth, at least a few times. It's unlikely that anyone would bother to do so with a game he/she doesn't like. Probably just a very serious case of Accentuate the Negative.
    • Some people may find the overly negative stuff funny, but this was just one of the more flat-out insufferable "humor" fics to read IMO.
    • {{Alynnidalar I'll}} throw in my two cents on this one. This fic lampshades a lot of (apparent) plot holes and characterization issues from the first game. If you can maintain your sense of humor throughout the whole thing, parts are absolutely hilarious, but it does get vicious at times, and is likely to make you rageface at least once or twice when there's a perfectly sensible in-story explanation for a supposed plot hole that is mocked. If you find it hard to read parodies or take rather vicious criticism of the game in stride, I'd advise you to avoid it. If, on the other hand, you're OK with that, read it and laugh your head off. In my opinion, I'm fairly certain it was written by someone who enjoyed the game (they know far too much about the inner workings of the game to actually hate it), so just keep that in mind. And it legitimately is hilarious most of the time--in particular, do not read the retelling of the moon mission while sitting in math class, as you will need to go running for the door lest you burst out laughing in the middle of a serious discussion on the Euclidean Algorithm or something. FWIW, I still think the fic is worth reading, just understand that every character is mocked heavily, with poor Tali likely getting the worst of it. There are no exceptions--everyone from the Council to Steve, the blond guy who salutes you every time you walk down the stairs in the Normandy, is mocked mercilessly.

New Friends by Mister Buch

  • Recommended by User:Tillian, User:Medicus
  • Synopsis: Shepard is a 16 year-old penniless petty thief living on Earth. She starts running with the 10th Street Reds and finds a new life for herself. When the gang plans to assassinate a turian veteran she has to find the great strength she has been ignoring.
  • Comments: A detailed backstory for the Earthborn profile. It explores the dark underbelly in the streets of Earth, alien racism and prejudice with biotics. Brilliant attention to the settings of the world, a steady pacing and a interesting POV of a young Shepard who is a child on the verge of becoming an adult. A must read if you like Mass Effect fics.
    • An interesting look at just what Earthborn Shepard's life was like before the Alliance. Personally I love how she learns she's a biotic; secondary exposure to eezo via red sand is something I've put into my personal canon. It's also the perfect length for fanfic, something you can finish in an afternoon. That said, the setting isn't painted that well; I was imagining a slightly rundown area of my own town.

Graveyard Shift by Peptuck

  • Recommended by corin, Bufu, User:Medicus
  • Synopsis: A Novelization of the first Mass Effect game, that cuts close to the plot of the original story, while still making some deviations. Features a male biotic Colonist Shepard that has aspects of both the War Hero and the Ruthless backgrounds.
  • Comments: Another videogame Novelization by the same author behind Tiberium Wars and Forward. Still just starting up (as of this point, the story has just reached the Citadel) but so far, by the reviewers' response, its a very well-written story that paints Shepard in an interesting light as both a pragmatic soldier and a traumatized veteran. Promises to be good, if the author could just keep up with regular updates.
  • Rather good writing, as Tiberium Wars has already proved. To be honest, I need a little more to judge by, but what he's written so far is very intriguing. He's doing a great job of adapting the story to the medium, and with good results so far. Only complaints so far is irregular update schedule. Definitely worth the time if you would like something to read without sifting through mountains of mediocre fics.
    • Peptuck's efforts to avoid repeating dialogue from the game and fleshing out the universe are beyond excellent. Definitely worth a look.

Exitus by Sinvraal

  • Recommended by owlbot
  • Sypnosis: Explorations, variations and off-camera moments from the Mass Effect 2 storyline. Multiple character PO Vs.
  • Comments: An excellent fic weaving in and out of the ME2 storyline, expanding on character viewpoints and weaving subplots in and out. Fem!Shep seems to be more of a Paragade rather than a particularly clean-cut Paragon or Renegade, which makes her own personal interactions and plots quite a bit more interesting. Also includes one of the most utterly fantastic portrayals of Legion ever witnessed in Mass Effect fanfic history.

Interstitium by Assault Sloth

  • Recommended by Deadpool Fan, Darkholme, User:Firebert, sushemi, owlbot
  • Synopsis: A series of oneshots weaving in and out of the ME2 plot, focusing on major and minor character POV's alike!
  • Comments: The series overall does a great job of detailing some of the more minor and major characters of the Mass Effect universe. The stories give us a better idea of who these people are and its surprisingly accurate to their personalities. The chapter detailing Grunt and Kal'Reegar's points of view is very well done, contrast Grunt's Blood Knight tendencies with Kal's professional soldier personality. Even lesser known NPC characters are given a good deal of characterization, such as one Krogan tank-born that's one of Professor Okeer's reject pile and even Wilson, a minor bit player at the start of the game, is given a full chapter devoted to him that wonderfully broadens his character. All in all its a great read.
    • Seconded, the author manages to breathe life into both the setting and the characters.
    • A really great read, especially if you're tired of fics focusing only on the main characters. Recommended to all comers.

Mass Effect Interregnum by The Naked Pen

  • Recommended by Altercation, Spark Moon, randomfanboy, Javier, Joysweeper, sushemi
  • Synopsis: Focuses on Garrus's days between ME1 and 2, initially set about four months after Shepard's death at the hands of the Collectors, detailing how he met and put together his team to fight crime. Those seeking fluff need not apply.
  • Comments: Without a doubt, one of the best fanfictions detailing Garrus's months in Omega. The characterization of Garrus is perfect, to use a better word, genuine. There's really no question on how much The Naked Pen captured Garrus's personality, his dark wit and constant second-guessing and wraps it all up in a central plot point concerning an incredibly powerful ship. Highly recommended.
    • Word. As someone who's totally burnt out on the romantic fluff stuff as far as anything involving Garrus goes, this story is a much needed breath of fresh air. In this troper's opinion, it's criminal this story hasn't gotten more attention.
    • The tragedy element of the story is heartwrenching as well. You know how it'll all end, so seeing Sidonis and Garrus becoming True Companions (with some very effective writing) will hurt you.
    • I agree with all of the above. The Naked Pen obviously really loves and understands Garrus and the Mass Effect universe, and its good to see a good writer writing something more like the games in tone than most of the rest of the fandom does. The only downside is that the updating is quite slow, but it's well worth the waits.
    • Possibly my favorite ME fanfic. Extraordinarily well written action, brilliant world building, wonderful sense of voice from Garrus, excellently conceived characters/personalities-- all together, a joy to read. Try it out, and I don't believe that anybody will find it a waste of time.
    • Unlike one of the above tropers, I like fluff. But I also liked this. Garrus seems very in-character, and even if the cyborg volus was eyebrow-raising, the constant snark back and forth is fun.
    • Incredibly good, almost suspiciously so. I'm not entirely sure that The Naked Pen isn't really one of the writers from Bioware who types this out in their spare time.
    • A minor but consistently-annoying quibble is that the author refers to every gun as firing "energy bolts" instead of bullets, when the series makes it very clear they're using kinetic weaponry and not energy. It's an otherwise glaring fault in a fic as well-researched as this one.
      • The author refers to them as bullets pretty much exclusively after chapter 13 and, even then, "energy bolt" isn't an unfair description of small chips of metal going at significant fractions of the speed of light.
    • Quite possibly {{Alynnidalar my}} favorite ME fic as well. Garrus is extremely well-characterized, and the large cast of characters (there's eleven other people on his squad, after all!) is handled surprisingly well. It's partly serious, especially considering that we all already know how it's going to end (made all the more poignant by the fact that Sidonis is actually a pretty cool guy in the fic, having an almost younger brother relationship with his sort-of mentor Garrus), but balances that with absolutely hilarious sequences. There's a cyborg volus. There's snide but not overly obnoxious digs at some of the stranger aspects of the games, such as the seemingly bulletproof couches in Garrus' base and Shepard's habit of constantly visiting nightclubs. There's a ship called the SSV Starf***er. Cannot possibly recommend enough if you like Garrus at all.
      • The author has also written one very well-done spin-off called Omega Noire. In it, Garrus tries to investigate a murder, struggling against the rampant corruption and apathy of Omega to find the facts. It's a good classic "noir" style mystery with influences and homages from many classic mysteries, yet manages to fit in well with the image of Omega the author created in Interregnum. And it's just plain cool to see Garrus putting his detective skills to work.
    • This is possibly the only Mass Effect Fanfic I've read that is a contender for the prestige of being Better Than Canon. Seriously, if your browsing through this page looking for something other than Slash Fic or yet another "retelling" of ME1 or ME2, click the link already.
    • Agreed; the actual Mass Effect novels pale in comparison in both prose and plot quality. However, the opening two sections ('Alpha and Omega' and 'Divine Intervention') are somewhat directionless and generally less good than the later arcs (though still pretty damn good compared to both the average fic and the official novels). Readers turned off by them might want to start with 'Sanctuary' to see how good the fic can be.
      • Contrary to the above troper, I actually enjoyed the first two arcs far more than the ones succeeding it. However, the later arcs, though significantly shorter, are still exceedingly well done, even if they aren't quite as engaging. That being said this is possibly the best written fic I've ever read, so there's that too.

Mind Over Matter by eyyowlf

  • Recommended by Spark Moon
  • Synopsis: From the summary: The adventures of the first human Spectre, the Butcher of Torfan, the son of Mindoir. Mild au for original subplots and sidequests. Ruthless Vanguard with concentration on biotics, aliens, milSF, and secondary crew. Pretty much an AU take on the first Mass Effect game, featuring a male Shepard.
  • Comments: Man. There are no words to accurately describe this fic. It's one of those ones that has so much stuff going on in it, it *has* to be read to be fully appreciated. The starring Shepard is such a jerkass, but a likable one to this troper. Seriously, find the time to sit down and read this if you can.

Iron Sharpens Iron by snippax

  • Recommended by: Kalaong
  • Status: Ongoing
  • Synopsis: FemShep is made more awesome than canon in the only way canon could provide; she was raised by Clan Urdnot as an honorary Krogan.
  • Comments: Shepard raised by Krogan. What else can be said?
    • Seconded by FelicitySprings. This is an excellent fic, especially if you're frustrated by many of the constraints of the canon Shepard backgrounds. As an added bonus, there's a good deal of FemShep/Miranda, FemShep/Jack and FemShep/Ashley in this fic, and that type of content at this level of quality is a rare thing indeed.

Tomorrow's Dawn by ElectricZ

  • Recommended by: Hanz, Sithking Zero, owlbot
  • Synopsis: After Legion was destroyed in a mission, Tali is assigned the duty of recovering its memories despite her hatred of the Geth. As she views the last few moments of Legion, she begins to understand why the others see it as one of their True Companions as it proceeds to try and save it's squadmates.
  • Comments: Fascinating portrayal of Tali's hatred of Legion being tested. Likewise, it's also very interesting how the author portrays Legion as capable of extraordinary heroism and ultimately, sacrifice, though still in his ultra-logical fashion.
    • One of the few fics that actually made me cry, and not just for Legion! Tali's growth was very well done. She blows up violently at Garrus when he and the rest of the crew mourn the geth, plots to send Legion's remains back to the fleet, but stops because she made a promise to Shepard. Upon retrieving the data, she sees that minutes before the battle where Legion was killed, Shepard learned from him that the geth were willing to make peace with the quarians, but just didn't know how to communicate it. And when the team was ambushed and completely helpless, Legion's programs voted to go on a suicide mission to save them, resulting in his destruction, losing the chance for peace forever. Tali's anguish over deciding to save Legion or give him to the fleet was heart-wrenching. This fic is also notable for having an alternate ending that the author describes as a save-game where he went back and upgraded Legion's shields so the damage is not irreparable. Legion's interruption of a depressing after-action meeting got the tears flowing again. I'm a sucker for happy endings! While not as emotionally hard hiting as the original ending, it adds a lot of wonderful dialogue and shows how even a quarian and geth can become friends. A marvelous read!
    • I just don't understand why I didn't read this one earlier. I think I was worried about it making me sad. Which it did, but... not at all in the way I expected. This is a truly fantastic fic, with Tali and yes, even Legion, written very much in character. If you like either character at all, you have to read this. The poster above me has already mentioned a lot of the great things in it, but let me just say that whichever ending you consider canon (technically, the alternate ending did go on to be canon in the writer's universe, with an in-progress sequel that, while less emotional and somewhat less character-focused than Tomorrow's Dawn, follows logically on from the conclusion of this fic, still with the great characterization, now of all members of Shepard's squad (and a few outside it!)), both are fantastic. Both make me cry, although for very different reasons. Absolutely recommend this to everyone! --User:Alynnidalar
    • Has a sequel spinning off from the alternate ending, where Tali manages to save Legion after reviewing his memories, titled For Tomorrow We Die. It's fantastic.

Second by ElectricZ

  • Recommended by: Salty Wound, Ghastdream
  • Synopsis: When Shepard is off the ship, the squad begins to chafe under Miranda's command. They look to Garrus to replace her as XO, but Garrus isn't sure mutiny is the answer.
  • Comments: Going in to this, you might be expecting a a Miranda bashing buffet. Unless you really are looking for that, you will be pleasantly surprised. This fic provides two of the best Miranda and Garrus characterizations I've ever read. Miranda starts out very jerky, but she begins to defrost without becoming a doormat for the others to wipe their feet on. Garrus shows himself to be a very capable mediator, without losing his tactical demeanor or his wry sense of humor. Also an entirely Shepard-less fic, which, in my opinion, adds to its strength. His influence still shows however, especially in the mini Twist Ending.

Fight for the Lost by LuxDragon

  • Recommended by: biodude711
  • Status: Ongoing
  • Synopsis: A very well written novelization of Mass Effect 2. Not a Shipping-Fic but has Shepard/Miranda.
  • Comments: As stated before, this story is VERY well written and not only focuses on the characterization of Commander Shepard but the rest of crew and team as well as they prepare for their suicide mission to stop the Collectors. The author does take some liberty with some of the game mechanics, but these changes don't take away from the story and help to make the story more believable. Very highly recommended and a must read for fans of Mass Effect 2.

Inglorious Boshtets by 500MetricTonnesofPalladium

  • Recommended by Kalaong
  • Pairing(s): Tali/Shepard, though nothing more than hints and remarks from Tali's side.
  • Synopsis: Tali has been stuck with a bad assignment and a worse crew after returning to the Migrant Fleet. During what should have been a routine scanning mission, Hilarity Ensues and the ship time travels back to Earth, 2005... and that's just her first mission!
  • Comments: A well written fic with enough humour in it to keep things light but retaining some serious moments. Some of the details of the Mass Effect universe have been sacrificed for the story, but if you can get over that it is well worth a look and at the very least Tali is beautifully in character.

Project Gethinator by 500MetricTonnesofPalladium

  • Recommended by Two Gun Angel
  • Pairing(s): Tali/Shepard again
  • Synopsis: The sequel to Inglorious Bosh'tets. Tali is back on the Normandy with Shepard, Garrus and a new crew, but it seems that the universe hasn't quite finished with her yet, as more craziness follows their every step.
  • Comments: Another well-written fic from the mind behind Inglorious Bosh'tets. This one is more of a mystery plot than the utter craziness of Bosh'tets, but still with a good deal of fun.

The Selfish Gene by Buggirl

  • Recommended by Spark Moon
  • Synopsis: From the summary: Miranda is dealing with some personal issues. Will she open up to someone about her problems, or will she remain the 'Ice Queen' that everybody has labelled her?
  • Comments: Centered around a particular Lair of the Shadow Broker dossier spoiler that divided Miranda's fanbase, this story tackles an extremely sensitive issue with aplomb and the utmost care. This is especially notable, as it draws from the author's own experiences on the issue while still keeping the characters -especially Miranda- in character. By far one of the more poigniant and thoughtful fan fics I've read in the fandom, in my opinion.

Who Saves the Hero? by Kudara

  • Recommended by Sithking Zero
  • Synopsis: Shepard had been brought back from death by Cerberus, but she suspects TIM has manipulated her into working for him and that he has his own hidden agenda. Who can she trust besides Garrus and Tali to help her discern the truth? Will be FemShep/Samara.
  • Pairing(s): FemShep/Samara, though this is notably NOT the point of this story.
  • Tags: Slightly lemon, also female/female relationships.
  • Comments: Wow. This story is one of the several fics that is a re-written version of ME2, but done in a really, really awesome way. Starts out with Shepard being very paranoid about Cereberus and the Illusive Man, but that in itself starts off a chain of events that really make this story stand out. A very different Shepard, one who actually thinks about where funds are coming from, one who is trying to seek out the best in everyone, and making it look good while doing it. Actually, I'm not doing a good job at summing it up. Just read it.
    • Spark Moon: The only thing that holds me back from giving it my full endorsement is that I prefer a celibate Samara (personal preference, sorry), but that aside, it is a well-written fic that pulls off a somewhat-saintly, but still flawed Shepard rather well.
    • I would recommend this, but the author's grammar is abysmal. The story is interesting, but the constant mechanical errors detract from the presentation.

The Long Walk by Prisoner 24601

  • Recommended by Spark Moon
  • Synopsis: Jacob Taylor deals with the death of Miranda Lawson, by speaking with Kelly Chambers and has a conversation -so to speak- with EDI and Joker.
  • Comments: Seeing as I love fan fic where Kelly Chambers isn't relegated to the disgusting and tired old jokes of being the ship's bicycle and is treated as a professional counselor, that alone makes this story worth reccing. Not only that, but so often we've seen how Shepard reacts to the deaths of various teammates... we rarely ever see it done from the POV of a squadmate. Prisoner tackles this with Jacob -another ill-treated character in fandom- with a maturity that makes both chapters very much worth reading.

The Uncounted by Moranth

  • Recommended by Spark Moon
  • Synopsis: From the summary: A series of oneshots exploring what *might be* the motives and final moments of the mercs you encounter on many of the missions in Mass Effect 2
  • Comments: In a sea of hamfisted romantic fluff and tacky self-inserts, this is a concept that shows incredible promise. While it's only one chapter in -and extremely short-, it manages to breathe life into a nameless mercenary and, in just under 700 words, gives him a character that may make you feel kinda bad for shooting him. Here's hoping for more in the future and that it's not another Dead Fic already.

Engineered by jtav

  • Recommended by Spark Moon
  • Synopsis: From the summary: Miranda's father considers his dynasty, his daughter, and the man in her life. Contains M!Shepard/Miranda, but it's technically not a shipping fic in the conventional sense.
  • Comments: A chilling story from the POV of Miranda's father concerning an issue that to this day still divides Miranda's fanbase. Miranda herself is quite in character (I winced at one of her suggestions, but regardless of personal feelings, it was in-character of her to say), which is a plus. A short, but well-done read.

The Galaxy Needs Heroes by paul16

  • Recommended by Tepoztecal
  • Synopsis: From the summary: After Sovereign's death some of the aftershocks run in unexpected directions.
  • Comments: It has been said of Mass Effect 2 that the game proves Good Is Not Nice. This fic proves Shepard doesn't need to go Renegade to be a cold-blooded sociopath.
    • While I would say that the story itself is actually quite good, the author is horrible with punctuation. Missing commas where there should be, a lack of scene breaks, and otherwise poor use of punctuation make for an annoyingly distracting read.

Noir Tali Is Noir by NuclearBuddha and RiptideX1090

  • Recommended by Cinereous, pcy623
  • Synopsis: The rain came down like bullets, each leaving a raw mark on my suit. I couldn't feel them, not with the suit. Then again, I'd stopped feeling things like that a long time ago. Two years ago. The Normandy.'
  • Comments: As the title says, a story written in Film Noir style, a look at Tali and her life during the two years after the destruction of the SSV Normandy. A Darker and Edgier story that paints an incredibly depressing look at what it is to be a quarian in a galactic society that despises them. This is a Tali who is full of quiet anger, hardened, bitter, and numb to the world, an empty shell whose one source of happiness was snuffed out two years ago. The two authors have created a story that fits amazingly well within canon events and truly takes the reader on a roller-coaster ride of emotions. (Note: To read this story and view the authors' profiles/blogs, you must sign up for an account on the Bioware social boards).

Broken Wings by Coombs

  • Recommended by Ghastdream
  • Synopsis: From the summary: After the destruction of the Normandy, Joker is grounded and returns to Arcturus Station. Cerberus recruits him. Rated M for strong language and sexual content.
  • Comments: It's quite an angsty take on Joker's reactions after the crash. Might be a bit drawn out, but worth it for the relationship explorations.

Spectre by Caine/Precept (Also available on FF.Net)

  • Recommended by: User:Gentlemens Dame 883
  • Synopsis: John Shepard is a man haunted by ghosts. Can he rise above his past to save the galaxy?
  • Pairing(s): Seems to be moving towards Shep/Tali.
  • Comments: A novelisation of the first game that the author really makes his own. While the plot doesn't diverge too greatly, it's in the character work that this shines, especially how the author depicts Shepard as struggling with his past rather than as canon's much less ambiguous hero.

Progress Reimagined by urapente

  • Recommended by Cinereous
  • Pairings: Some vague hints of (Male) Shepard/Tali, onesided Prazza/Tali, but this is not a shipping fic.
  • Synopsis: A greatly expanded novelization of the initial meeting on Freedom's Progress between Shepard, his Cerberus squadmates, and Tali's team.
  • Comments: The author turns what was a quick thirty minute intro mission into a multi-chapter story that showcases Tali and how she has matured and become a cynical, darker character after the events of ME1. Make no mistake: though the viewpoint character is Shepard, Tali is definitely the protagonist of this story. The initial meeting between the two is handled much more realistically than in-game, and Prazza's anger at and eventual betrayal of her are explored in serious depth, ending in a climax that chilled this troper to the bone. If you're tired of a Tali that is written as nothing but a blushing moeblob whose entire world revolves around Shepard, this is a welcome change of pace. Coincidentally, the general atmosphere and feel of the story is shockingly similar to Noir Tali Is Noir (which this troper also recommended) despite being written independently of each other. The author himself has high praise for that story on his Deviantart journal.
    • (There is also an alternate version of Chapter 2 told from Tali's point of view here on the author's Deviantart gallery.)
    • This Troper personally found that Shepard was thinking a wee bit too much about Tali considering he was in the middle of a combat situation. Also, the whole eye-implants deal felt like a red herring.

Aliens Are Weird by KiwiDayDreams

  • Recommended by: Kuro Rei
  • Synopsis: AU. Shepard and Garrus meet when they're much younger at the Citadel childcare center. Garrus has never seen a human before and Shepard has never seen a Turian up close. Shenanigans ensue as they both find out that aliens are really weird.
  • Comments: A cute one-shot with Shepard and Garrus as completely normal kids. Bit of a long read, but will put a smile on your face. Cameos with Wrex and Conrad.
    • Recommendation seconded by User:Alynnidalar. This is just plain adorable! You can definitely see that even when they were young, Garrus and Shepard (in this case, a female Spacer Shepard, most likely Paragon) had the foundations for the awesome people we know and love today. And Wrex's cameo is fantastic. Sure, we tend to think of him as the big, bad battlemaster who can crush a geth prime by glaring at it too hard, but somehow it still fits him that he'd be nice to kids.

Storytellers by IphigeniaWrites

  • Recommended by Tropulastic
  • Synopsis: After the war against the Reapers, Shepard's story is a legend. After the war, many people across different species tell her story... in their own ways.
  • Comments: It's an original idea and decently executed. It's interesting to see how all the aliens tell (and outright change) the story to emphasize the parts their species cares the most about: the krogan praise Shepard's worth in battle, the volus praise her skills in commerce...

Friends Like These by ElectricZ

  • Recommended by Pyjak, User:USA Bobcat
  • Synopsis: Takes place towards the start of ME2. Tali begins to notice Shepard disappearing from the ship at odd times and convinces Garrus, Joker and Dr. Chakwas to follow him to find out why.
  • Comments: Funny while staying completely in character, with the kind of sniping and bitching you'd expect from people who spend waaaay too much time together. The humor comes completely from knowing the characters, as opposed to having dialogue filled with a bunch of OOC one liners. Becomes even funnier when they catch up to Shepard and discover he's ducking out so he can escape a diet imposed by Miranda and has been doing so for months. It becomes a battle of wills between Garrus who wants to turn him in, and Shepard who is trying his best to bribe his crew to cover for him.
    • Freakin' hilarious. The author's got a knack for dialogue and the characters are spot on. A lot of humorfics go over the top, but this one is intelligent, well written and has a good plot for as short as it is. Shepard and Garrus's verbal sparring in the third chapter is especially fun, as is everyone teasing Tali for being a secret Shepard stalker. Also, the crew's responses when he challenges them to name the most fit person on the ship made me laugh out loud for real. Moved this one to General Fics because while funny, it focuses a lot on Garrus, Tali, Joker and the Doctor and why they are loyal to Commander Shepard.
    • Seconded. Everything Pyjack said is true. A lovely taste of comedy in a universe that can be rather grim.

KOKOMO by ghost.713

  • Recommended by: Ghastdream, Tikigod784
  • Synopsis: "Even vermin have a story." This is about a Vorcha
  • Comments: Tragic and beautifully written, especially concerning its alien perspective.
    • A great look into the "society" of a race that BioWare probably only intended as simple cannon fodder. If this were canon, a vorcha squad mate could arguably have the most alien dialogue in the game.

Mass Vexations by Herr Wozzeck

  • Recommended by: Sithking Zero, Catheri
  • Synopsis: "Vexations. Music of Erik Satie. Somehow, it transported me to the Mass Effect universe. Might as well make the best of it, and by that I mean help the crew stop Saren and the Geth, all without telling my real origins. Self-insert. Kaidan/Shepard."
  • Comments: THE Mass Effect Self Insert fanfiction on the internet. As far as I'm concerned, the only one. While self-inserts are dime-a-dozen, this story is in defiance of Sturgeon's law. Well-written, the main character is not a Mary Sue, the interactions feel totally natural, and all-around greatness. Now, in interest of fairness, it does have its negative points. The main character, Art, tends to go off on rants about things that the author feels strongly about. The first story is merely okay, while the sequel is far improved in terms of storytelling capability. However, those aren't enough to take away how good this story is. Has three sequels: Mass Vexations 2 (covering the second Mass Effect game), Mass Vexations: Redemption (covering the adventures of Liara trying to recover Shepard's body), and the newly started Mass Vexations 3.
    • I thought this story was not enjoyable at all. The protagonist is highly unlikable (not to mention borderlines on a God Mode Stu status at times, or too close to it for my liking), Art's random rants take me more out of the story than the rest of it already does, the story stretches even the most sturdy suspensions of disbelief -and not in a good way- and it's a chore to read even in some of the more funnier moments (which there are few). Unless it's somehow either a cleverly disguised Deconstruction and/or a Stealth Parody of self-insert fics in general, then pass.
      • I second this fic. I enjoyed Art's rants and didn't find any of the God Mode Stu issues that the above poster did as it seemed more of a case of Earn Your Happy Ending. In my opinion, it is definitely worth reading as I finished the first one awhile ago and am now spending my current break catching up on the sequels, which are turning out to be even better so far. A definite recommend and a must-read for anyone who loves ME fanfiction or needs to have their faith restored when it comes to Self Inserts.

Masses to Masses by Inf 3 ctionz

  • Recommended by: S3ek, User:USA Bobcat
  • Synopsis: “After a freak event sends me into the ME universe 2 years before ME1, I find myself working at C-Sec. As if dealing with serial killers, drug smugglers, and Garrus Vakarian wasn't enough, I need to work out why I was sent here, and I need to survive.”
  • Comments: A Mass Effect Self Insert that feature an Unlikely Hero: Ian Shaw, a British law student with very little in the way of training for detective work or a military operation. He learns. Better yet, this story starts two years before the start of Mass Effect. The first of the series begins before Mass Effect 1 where Ian is Garrus’ partner as a detective, the second begins when Garrus and Ian meet Shepard on the Citadel and features the events of the game, and the third installment begins with the destruction of the Normandy and features Ian’s escapades as Deadpool, part of Archangel’s crew. It’s one of the most popular Mass Effect Self Inserts, rivaling the fame of Mass Vexations.

  Ian Shaw (has) done gotten himself more famous than Arnold Schwarzenegger's pecs. - Sarge1995

Mass Effect 2 AU: Lanius by College Fool

  • Recommended by: User:P Sychotic
  • Synopsis: When the Shadow Broker brings the Commander back, Cerberus is behind the colony abductions for unclear reasons, and a fallen hero of the Alliance who can foil even Shepard is at the head of it, it's just the start of a different Mass Effect 2... ME2 AU
  • Comments: A complete reimagining of ME2, and absolutely fantastic. The only problem is the occasional misspelling. It's similar to Renegade Reinterpretations (the author wrote both), in that it's less like reading a story and more like reading how Mass Effect could have been.

First Contact by Animus of Masada

  • Recommended by: User:Alynnidalar, Tropulastic, Bio D
  • Synopsis: An asari exploration vessel discovers Earth in the 2030's...and the first contact scenario has incredible implications for both species. What does humanity look like through alien eyes? Where do they go from here?
  • Comments: An interesting look at what would happen if humanity became part of the galactic community Twenty Minutes Into the Future--and, more importantly, if the asari were the first to meet us, rather than the turians. As you can imagine, things turn out quite peacefully... although there are hints at darker conspiracies revolving around this new species. Starts off very light-hearted and comedic (humanity's first words to an alien species are pretty classic), slowly turning more serious as it continues, but never entirely losing the light-heartedness.
    • Liking it so far. I'm a sucker for the Humans Through Alien Eyes trope, and even if there seem to be a few mistakes in accuracy, I'm liking the Rousseau Was Right undertones of the first contact.
    • It's something of a Scrapbook Story. The anachronic order and multiple format story telling (from the normal prose to fake alien essays) are interesting and provides some incredibly emotional moments. If the recovery of the Mars rovers doesn't make you well up a little you might lack empathy all together.

Mass Effect 3: After the Fall by Fenris Marine

  • Recommended by: thatdude
  • Pairing: Paragon!Shepard/Tali
  • Synopsis: A fanmade epilogue about what happen to the races stranded in the Sol system after the Destroy ending.
  • Comments: Let's not beat around the bush here, the ending to Mass Effect 3 was... less then disirable. This fic however is not a Fix Fic but rather an attempt to at least salvage it. It gives us what the actual ending didn't: Closure, the aftermath of the war, and a somewhat happy ending. Its not perfect, but it's a lot better then what we got.

Mass Effect: Circular by Gregg Landsman

  • Recommended by: The Curator, User:USA Bobcat, User:Unclouded TJ
  • Synopsis: From the man who brought us Nobody Dies comes the epic continuation of the Mass Effect Franchise. The ending of Mass Effect 3 was not the beginning of the end. It was not the end of the end. It was simply the end of the beginning.
  • Pairing(s): None
  • Tags: Fix Fic (sort of), Mental Time Travel
  • Warnings: YMMV strongly, as there is a bit of handwaving in the first chapter that some may find to be excessive. Additionally, if you are the 1% that liked the endings, Gregg has done away with them completely.
    • Author's note: I actually do like the endings. -Gregg
  • Comments: Imagine, if you will, Shepard being more badass then before. Then imagine that Gregg Landsman wrote about what happens given Shepard’s newfound badassery. There is absolutely no way conceivable under the laws of the universe for this not to be awesome. And it is. It totally is. Also Javik meets a Hanar. Hilarity Ensues.

Unending by Halm Vendrella

  • Recommended by: Vellaen
  • Synopsis: The Crucible is activated. The Reapers are destroyed. And a man who should be dead takes a breath. Find out how Commander Shepard survived... and what the Catalyst's deception means for the galaxy.
  • Status: Complete, though with something of a Twist Ending/Sequel Hook, on which YMMV.
  • Comments: The title is as sarcastic as it sounds. One of many fics written in rebellion against the Mass Effect 3 endings, and another possible take on the Indoctrination Theory. The author tries to justify why Shepard survives the destroy ending, along with tackling an assortment of other questions left unanswered by canon. The characters are well-presented, and there's a familiar flavor to the banter between squadmates. Wrex returns, and he's the same old troll from the first game.

Black Moon Rising by santi01

  • Recommended by: User:Dr Jekyl
  • Synopsis: " A by-the-book detective finds a her simple investigation into odd rumours of drink spiking in Eternity spiraling out of control. Soon she and an unconventional asari matriarch are tearing up Nos Astra in pursuit of answers and maybe a little revenge.
  • Comments: A Mass Effect-flavoured classic buddy-cop drama with a noir twist. Action, adventure and arse-kicking with beats of humour. Plus, Matriarch Aethyta, who's always a winner. The link goes to the first installment; for the rest you'll unfortunately need to go through the author's deviant art account.

In Times of War by ML Gumm

  • Recommended by: openseseme
  • Synopsis: From plot summary- In times of war friends pop up from the oddest places. A human colony kid, barely fifteen and a turian C-Sec officer closing in on twice her age certainly count as an odd pair of friends, but war has a way of bringing us together, even as it tears us apart.
  • Comments: A tale of friendship told through minimalistic prose that creates a vivid picture of who each character is and how they interact. The shortness of the chapters can be hard to get used to at first, but this troper thinks the story works largely because of the simplicity. Currently a work in progress.
    • Now complete. Be warned, while most of the story is funny and sweet it starts to get darker towards the end, which is heartbreaking.

From Hell's Heart by gtamaster316

  • Recommended by: Metal King 1417
  • Synopsis: A fic where the so called "First Contact War" between the Humans and the Turians blossumed into a full out 47 year war between Humans and the Turians.
  • Comments: A suprisingly well written fic that explores the implications of what might have happened if negotiations broke down between humans in the Turians. Several Cannon charicters recieve different, though reasonable recharicterizations in this fic, one of the most noticable being Sarren, who now has an entirely diferent veiw of humans thanks to an encounter with one, as well as the fact that humanity had to make some, less than savory deals with factions that other fics tend to have them at war with like the Batarians.

Conception by lloyd007

Shipping Fics

Shipping Fics

Stories focused on the romantic relationships between the cast.

Iunctio by Sinvraal

  • Recommended by Damsel Of Distress, Joysweeper, Tropulastic
  • Pairing: Female Shepard/Kaidan, mild Joker/Ashley
  • Synopsis: Explorations, variations and off-camera moments from the main storyline. Multiple character POVs.
  • Comments: Tempted to put this in general fics as lots of other character interactions is explored than just Shenko. Utter brilliant attention to narrative detail and is easily one of the best Mass Effect fics.

Manipulations by akg.writes

  • Recommended by Tropulastic
  • Pairing: Female Shepard/Kaidan Alenko, Ship Tease of Garrus and Kasumi
  • Warnings: Out of 65+ chapters, a few of them have explicit content
  • Synopsis: Shepard has newfound biotic powers, thanks to the Lazarus Project. She doesn't know how to use them though, so a certain L2 biotic is hired to be her teacher. But things won't be easy: Shepard and Kaidan aren't on good terms, and neither are Alliance and Cerberus officers. They'll all have to work together, as there are bigger interests in play. And why was Shepard turned into a biotic, anyway?
  • Comments: There's some good technical explanations of the Mass Effect lore, and the plot is Original Flavour of good quality. Just for that it's worth checking, even if the story moves slowly. However, the fic's true strength is characterization: most characters make an appearance, they're all very good at their jobs, and they're all consistent with their in-game versions. Of all of them, Shepard, Kaidan and Miranda are the most fleshed out: their behaviors and actions are carefully examined, compared, contrasted, and their points of view make for an entertaining read of the fic's events, as well as give access to their hidden depths. As for the romance, their relationship compares their past and their present, which makes it kind of bittersweet... but deep down, they still care for each other. Overall, it's a sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes heartwarming, mostly fun ride, and if you like snarky writing and long fanfics, you'll love every second of it.

Persephone Rising by ansinna (A shared account belonging to Evil Sapphyre, jillyfae, and SiaLater)

  • Recommended by Lady Demonique
  • Pairing: fem!Shepard/Joker, fem!Shepard/Kaidan, fem!Shepard/Garrus.
  • Synopsis: From the summary: Three Shepards were born, instead of just one. Alexis Shepard, the Spacer and War Hero, as beautiful as she is driven. Ella Shepard, the Mindoir-born, Butcher of Torfan with a heart of gold. Meghan Shepard, Earthborn reformed criminal and the Sole Survivor of Akuze. They've all been assigned to the Normandy SR-1 for her shake-down cruise. But no one ever sends these marines out together for just a shake-down cruise...
  • Comments: A single Commander Shepard is already pretty damn Badass, but putting three different combinations of Shepard's backgrounds together just takes the awesome Up to Eleven. The three authors who co-write this fanfic work together very well, and manage to make their respective Shepards believable. The action sequences are brilliant, the pacing fast but not rushed, and the exploration of the Shepards' relationship with their Love Interests are handled sensitively. All in all, a very entertaining read.

Modus Operandi by Pereprin

  • Recommended by Tolgron
  • Pairing: Garrus/Shepard
  • Synopsis: Starting just after Shepard recieves command of the Normandy, Modus Operandi flits back and forth between Shepard's current missions and interactions with her crew, and the story of how she came to be the woman capable of being the first human Spectre. All the while, increasingly towards the ending chapters, Shepard forms a rather complicated relationship with her turian squadmate, Garrus Vakarian. Rated M for adult language and rather steamy romance scenes.
  • Comments: Easily one of the best Mass Effect fanfics out there, the narrative is approached maturely and with utmost respect for the source it draws from. The dialogue is so believable that you can quite easily hear the characters speaking as you read it, and the narrative is very skillfully woven together such that you can't help but keep reading. Top class stuff.

Strange Bedfellows by Phoenike

  • Recommended by LoganLee88
  • Synopsis: An alternate take to the love scene between Garrus and Shepard before the Omega-4 Relay and a post-Suicide Mission chapter as well.
  • Pairing: Garrus/Shepard
  • Comments: Unlike majority of Garrus/Shep fics this troper has read, this fic isn't all fluffy and stuff. It can be quite explicit in parts but what fascinates is how the pair are incompatible in some physical ways. Additionally, (not to give away any spoilers) this fiction reminds players that not everyone gets perfect playthroughs.

The Thane Krios Experience by littleblackdog

  • Recommended by Joysweeper
  • Pairings: Garrus/Shepard, Garrus/Thane.
  • Synopsis: Nervous about the mechanics of blowing off steam with a human, Garrus seeks advice about the bane of xeno-loving turians throughout the galaxy— how is this kissing thing supposed to work, especially when you've got no lips?
  • Comments: It actually might fit better in the Humor section, but ehh. The title's a reference to The Jimi Hendrix Experience, and despite an awkward line or two it's just fun.

Rock Steady by Gagged Cenobite

  • Recommended by User:Herr Wozzeck, pcy623
  • Recommended by User:Oracle
  • Pairing: Thane/Jack
  • Synopsis: Nobody's really whole, we're just broken in different ways from each other. Jack learns this as her friendship with a certain drell assassin slowly intensifies.
  • Comments: One would think pairing a violent, manic-depressive, and overall bitchy character like Jack with a character who is pretty much her exact opposite would be impossible. And yet, Gagged Cenobite makes such a relationship work beautifully here, bringing Jack and Thane together in ways that are quite unexpected and yet work so well. The scenes before the Omega 4 relay especially make this pairing work; it could almost be a canon pairing the way it is handled so respectfully and delicately. Definitely a recommended read based on the strength of the character development on Jack's end throughout, too.
    • Also there's a lovely cameo of Kasumi that's very in character. This is important because the author wrote this BEFORE Kasumi was released as DLC.

Taking Back Yesterday by Gagged Cenobite

  • Recommended by JackInqu
  • Pairing: Thane/Jack
  • Synopsis: An exercise in getting rid of unwanted tenants. Is it worth it to plan, organize, and execute a full-on assault on the biggest arms dealer in Citadel space, just to get some alone-time? You bet your ass it is.
  • Comments: A sequel/side-story to Rock Steady, Jack and Thane help Kasumi with her mission to retrieve her partner's graybox from Donovan Hock. Only two chapters at this time, but it looks like it will be up to the standards of it's preceding story. Jack continues to go through Character Development while Thane deals with some loose ends of his own. Oh, and Liara T'Soni makes an appearance. Spoilers for Kasumi's mission and "The Lair of the Shadow Broker."

A Harmless Pastime by Pigblossom.

  • Recommended by User:Doug S Machina, Oracle, User:Ka Blamoid 4 Life, User:Medicus, Beckett, User:montagohalcyon.
  • Pairings: Plenty, including Female Shepard/Liara and Kelly -> Shepard.
  • Synopsis: Snooping through the Normandy's computer systems, Miranda discovers Shepard's hobby of writing explicit slash fiction about her colleagues. Hilarity Ensues.
    • Read it, it's hilarious.
    • Between Jacob's astonishment and horror, the revelation of Garrus' big secret, and Jack's constant swearing... what's not to love?
    • Don't forget Tali's talking about "revolutionizing quarian sex lives".
    • Even funnier after the Lair of the Shadow Broker DLC: Kasumi writes haikus about Jacob. No, really!
    • Not dissimilar to this.

Razor's Edge by Tairis Deamhan

  • Recommended by Herr Wozzeck, Sigge
  • Pairings: Tali/Shepard
  • Synopsis: Life is all about finding something worth living for, the question is what is that when you're a spectre that has already died once? John Shepard seeks to find this out as he begins to realize the extent of his feelings to a certain quarian engineer...
  • Comments: Possibly the single finest example of Tali/Shepard I can find anywhere on the internet. Tairis Deamhan has a real eye for character development; everything flows incredibly naturally in terms of character actions, and when we finally begin to get Tali and Shepard's romance after a very slow build-up, it's astoundingly beautiful. It's also a great read given how he manages to treat all of the missions/assignments in the fic, giving so much more emotional edge to each one (of particular note is his treatment of Samara's loyalty mission).
    • Seconded, sure it contains some misspellings and faulty grammars but is really well done and is a very good read.
    • The sequel, Dark Witness, is also complete. It covers the events of Lair of the Shadow Broker, still with plenty of Shep/Tali goodness.
    • The third installment in the series, Requiem, has begun, and will follow the events of Mass Effect 3.

Just a Soldier by Dinah Lance

  • Recommended by Spark Moon
  • Pairings: Female Shepard/Jacob Taylor
  • Synopsis: From the summary After Shepard is poisoned on Omega, Jacob volunteers to lure out Morinth. Pretty much exactly what it says on the tin, with a Female Shepard, natch.
  • Comments: Jacob Taylor has been the oft-maligned punching bag of the fandom for a multitude of reasons, a majority of which are undeserved in this troper's opinion. Dinah Lance, thankfully, has taken Jacob and made him more than a cheap joke factory and turned him into a competent, strong character and the hints of romance between the characters isn't forced. As one of the few and proud Jacob fans out there, I strongly reccomend this one.

Our Love Is Problematic by Finn Solomon

  • Recommended by Dutch Warlord, Sithking Zero
  • Pairings: Male Shepard/Subject Zero
  • Synopsis: From the opening Chapter "A Mass Effect 2 fic detailing the growing relationship between Commander John Shepard and the mysterious, violent biotic known only as Jack." Exactly what it says, starts from Purgatory and continues onwards. Ongoing.
  • Comments: Theres more Shepard/Tali romance fics than anyone can shake a stick at, and this happens not only to put Jack in a prominent role but happens to be well written. It covers as mentioned from the Purgatory Mission to Suicide Run and goes past. Rather humorous, especially since Shepard isnt played as a stereotypical Do-Good Hero Jesus type, but a person with flaws. Strongly Recommended.
    • If for no other reason, the scene between Shepard and Morinth is terrifying and amazing in its own right. I love the story, but that has to be one of my favorite parts.

Geth Infiltrator by DiChromate

  • Recommended by Meat Wisdom
  • Pairings: Tali/Legion
  • Synopsis: In preparation for the Suicide Mission, Shepard calls on Tali and Legion to accompany him on a mission, in order to get the two to get along both on and off of the battlefield. Tali learns that there is more to Legion than your average Geth, and is more than surprised when she starts developing feelings for it.
  • Comments: This story is quite entertaining, managing to seamlessly meld both action and romance. The author even showcases several gameplay elements, such as ammo/weapon switching, Suicide Mission mechanics (the second half of the story takes place during it and gives it a new angle), and having Legion do things that only a synthetic could. Tali's relationship with Legion is also well done, going from barely hiding her contempt for it to falling in love. Don't worry, the story addresses how that would even be possible (namely the fact that Tali can rarely leave her suit and Legion being a robot and all).
    • User:Night: Entertaining, and it captures Legion's mannerisms both vocal and physical very well. Tali is also quite convincing in both action and thoughts. (Even Shepard, Gabby, and Ken talk and act like themselves, which considering the number of Shepards In Name Only is pretty impressive.) Where the story falls down is in portraying Legion's own thoughts. This is entirely forgiveable, I think, because a human author is always going to have trouble describing how a collective machine conciousness thinks.
    • Iaculus: I'm afraid the speed at which Tali's feelings for Legion developed kind of snapped my Willing Suspension of Disbelief. There should have been a bit more of an intermediary stage between 'mutual tolerance' and 'wants to get into the walking death-machine's metaphorical pants', in my opinion. If it hadn't been for that, though, I think I might have rather enjoyed it.

Tiger By My Side by Introjection

  • Recommended by Cass
  • Pairing: Joker/Shepard
  • Synopsis: Commander Shepard isn't one to be confused. However, after the events on the remote colony of Horizon, she has no choice but to accept the things she does not want to face, and have the courage to start life anew.
  • Coments: I was a little wary of this one going in, since from the first chapter it seems like the story is going to contain pointless Jacob-bashing for the sake of the pairing and like it might rush the relationship. But I kept going and was so glad that I did because instead I got a great, natural, build-up with all the snark you'd want in a Joker-centric fic, and even Shep's unease with Jacob turns out to have actual character-based reasons. It also stands out among many long-fics I've read set during ME2 for not spending a lot of time regurgitating conversations and scene-by-scene descriptions of situations we already saw in the game, filling in the spaces between cutscenes instead. And even when it delves into missions that we've all played through Introjection isn't afraid to make (minor) changes to keep things fresh.

Mass Mayhem by Universitas

  • Recommended by Spark Moon
  • Pairing(s): M!Shepard/Joker (ergo, slash)
  • Synopsis: Quoted from the summary itself: 100 drabbles in 20 weeks exploring Victor Shepard and his crew. Spans the first game and is now entering into Mass Effect 2
  • Comments: Drabbles themselves can be hit or miss, what with having to cram part of a story into 100-500 words or less. This anthology does it with flying colors, hitting on key parts of the characters' personalities in such a small space. (This troper's personal favorites are #'s 72 and 90) YMMV on the slash component, but even this troper -who dislikes Joker- admits the writer does a very good job of writing the sarcastic helmsman, keeping him very much in character while writing a relationship with a male Shepard. Speaking of Shepard, the one in this story is one of the more interesting takes on the male version of the player character.
    • There is now a non-drabble-based sequel, Chessboard, focusing on Victor Shepard's Mysterious Past told in flashback at the beginning of each chapter (sometimes with its own cliffhanger) and the crew's attempts to find him when he goes missing because of it.
    • Now has its own article.

Clearly A Mistake by Metal Dragon Kiryu

  • Recommended by Ethan Miller, Spark Moon
  • Pairings: Jack/Miranda, Female Shepard/Liara, Kelly > Shepard.
  • Synopsis: Set during the second game, the story focuses on the relationship between Miranda and Jack. It contains f/f sex, albeit not explicit, and a moderate amount of swearing.
  • Comments: It's a well written story that takes itself seriously. The characters are in character, the pairing is well developed. This editor thinks it's an interesting story.
    • An interesting story, to say the least. Unlike most Jack/Miranda fics that throw them together to cheaply titillate readers, this one takes a more mature approach to it. Worth the time to read and some of the follow-ups to this are quite fun too, in this troper's opinion.

Something That'll Last by Popehippo

  • Recommended by Spark Moon, User:Salty Wound, Ultrayellow, Sithking Zero
  • Pairings: Background characters, specifically a salarian and an asari.
  • Synopsis: From the summary A small glimpse into the life of those outside of Commander Shepard's story; based on the interactions of two NPCs in Illium. That is to say, the unnamed salarian and his asari step-daughter you overhear on Illium.
  • Comments: This short, but extremely beautiful one-shot takes a glimpse not at Shepard or any of his/her crew, but two one-off characters you pass by on one of the main worlds of the sequel: a salarian searching for a gift for his significant other with his asari step-daughter. To say any more than that would be a spoiler, but I will leave you with this: have at least one tissue handy, because if you have a heart, you'll be misty-eyed at the end.
    • *Sniff*...those two characters always got me when I passed by them in the game. Having now read this, I may never be able to walk by them again without crying my eyes out.
    • This is excellent. Understated, simple, but absolutely beautiful. It's nice to see someone who writes such great stories about characters who don't get any interactions with Shepard at all.
    • Nthing. Very well-written one-shot.
    • It takes a lot to get me to cry, but I did feel a little bit of tightness in my chest and some prickling in my eyes when I read this. For a character who has maybe ten lines total, and you probably never hear all of them unless you're staying to listen, this is a very powerful story.

Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained by ghost.713

  • Recommended by User:Salty Wound
  • Pairings: Kolyat/Oriana
  • Synopsis: Guardian angels have never been perfect creatures, but a one-time hitman might be stretching things. After his assassination attempt is foiled, Kolyat Krios begins working for Captain Bailey on Zakera Ward, reluctantly and irritably attempting to repent for his crime. At the same time, Oriana Solheim, now attending multiple schools on the Citadel, moves into the apartment next door to Koylat. An incredibly awkward, yet terribly cute relationship inevitably forms.
  • Comments: On first glance, this may sound like a desperate attempt to pair up two side-characters for the hell of it. However, it's a shining example of Better Than It Sounds. The two characters are brought together realistically and their interactions feel genuine. Also happens to feature some of the best Captain Bailey writing I've ever seen. You can easily hear Michael Hogan delivering the lines.
    • Seconded once again by Pyrotorch246. It's a fun read that shows that life goes on while Shepard is out saving the galaxy. The writing and characterizations are excellent, as is the plot.
    • Yep, great read that fleshes out the wides universe and characters very well.

Supernova by Echo Alexia

  • Recommended by Ghastdream
  • Synopsis: Nihlus meets Femshep prior to boarding the Normandy. They duke it out with lots of mercs.
  • Pairing: Nihlus/Shepard
  • Comments: A brilliant action packed romantic comedy, despite the canonical tragic ending.

Learning Experiences by inthefadeforever

  • Recommended by Ghastdream
  • Synopsis: AU with no reapers, Shepard as a Spectre candidate and Saren as her instructor.
  • Pairing: Saren/Shepard
  • Comments: Best completed fanfic of this pairing I can find, excellent plot and character development.

GT Snap Shots and GT Snap Shots: Reboot by LockDown

  • Recommended by User:Firebert
  • Pairing: Garrus/Tali
  • Synopsis: A series of one-shots about the Garrus and Tali pairing.
  • Comments: Very nice fanfics of this pairing, with correctly guessed examples of events in Mass Effect 2 in the first fic. It features great character development, as well.

A Thessian's Whisper by PMC 65

  • Recommended by Shakduhn
  • Pairing: Liara/Female Shepard
  • Synopsis: The separate lives of E.W. Shepard (Elizabeth Whisper Shepard) and Liara T'Soni: Starting in 2164 when Shepard is 10 and Liara is 87 the story reveals how they grow up to become the individuals that meet on Therum. Their families, friends, lovers and life experiences.
  • Comments: One of the finest works of fiction I've ever read. Unlike most romance fics, this one focuses on the personal lives of shepard and liara BEFORE they ever met. Each chapter takes turns narrating a segment on shepard's life, followed by liara's and so on. What makes this fic stand from so many others, is how much the authoress goes into detail. Ample background is given for shepard's family, and friends, as well as Liara's family and friends. Each and every single one of the characters, from shepard's dad, to shep's mom, to her friends, to her grandparents, is a multi-layered well developed well focused personality. It focuses on the "Colonial" background of shepard (Lived on Mindoir, till it was attacked when she was 16). It has a healthy dose of humor, drama, well written dialog, a small dose of pop culture references, and plenty of shot-outs to future events that end up happening in the first game, it does a great job in fleshing out characters that don't get so much limelight on the actual game (Like Benezia, or Shiala). This fanfic is complete, starts from when shepard was 10, and ends just before she is selected as Nhilus's disciple as the first human spectre. It has a sequel in the form of The Shepherdess and the Questing Beast which covers the events depicted in the first game, and its currently a work in progress. Most definitely a MUST-READ for any fem!shep fan out there.
    • Its of particular note how much detail goes into Asari Culture in general, with well defined, well researched exposure to their customs, rituals, culture, and more. So if you also happen to be an Asari fan, this is the one fic you CANT afford to miss.

Gabby and Ken by Joe La Turkey

  • Recommended: by chankljp
  • Pairings: Gabby/Ken, Shepard/Kelly
  • Synopsis: A story that take place during the events of Mass Effect 2, starting with Kelly and Kasumi getting into a wager to get everyone's favorite engineering duo into admitting their feeling for each other. Things get interesting as the Normandy crew got some shore leave on Illium, with large number of crew members trying to ship the two of them.
  • Comments: As of the writing of this recommendation, this is the only story on Gabby and Ken that is available on Fan Everyone in the story fits their characterization in the game, with the trademark sarcastic humor from the duo and all other characters. Includes some minor shipping between Kelly and Shepard.

The Robot by starkraves

  • Recommended by: User:Jonn
  • Synopsis: "If the geth have a soul then it is a strange one, but if the soul exists then so too do all the sorrows that comes with it."
  • Pairing(s): Tali/Legion

Escaping the Past by Retail Avenger 85

  • Recommended by: Bbg1129
  • Synopsis: Lt Kaidan Alenko learns to let go of the things that haunt his past with the help of his odd new Commander. His overwhelming urge to protect everyone is derailed by a woman who can protect herself. The author's "headcanon", expanding on games.
  • Pairing(s): Fem!Shep/Kaidan
  • Comments: Basically goes through Mass Effect 1 from the point of view of Kaidan. Author does a great job inserting game dialog, and adding their own. Funny and adorable, The author really gets inside Kaidan's head, and fleshes out his character. Followed by Mass Effect 2 sequel Repairing the Present and Mass Effect 3 Creating the future (currently a WIP) The series is definitely worth a read. Takes a few chapters for the author to hit their stride, but settles in nicely.

Humor Fics

Humor Fics

Crackfics, satires, or otherwise humorous stories.

Garfield Effect: Galaxy Adventure by ShakepeareHemmingway

  • Recommended by Psythe, Xysnei
  • Synopsis: Garfield leads Shepard and crew to save galaxy!
  • Comments: Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that I would see a Garfield/Mass Effect crossover, and never in those same dreams did I believe I would ever laugh so hard. This is very much in the tradition of Full Life Consequences, truly great badfic, and I cannot recommend it highly enough. If you've ever wanted to see Shepard get it on with every girl in the game as well as a hanar, a varren, and all of the krogan females of Tuchanka at the same time, this is the fic for you. Every time I read it something new and amazing comes out of it. THESE ARE MY OLIVE BRANCHES.

A Trail a Mile Wide by Heuksal

  • Recommended by Anthurak, User:Doctor Worm, Joysweeper, pcy623
  • Synopsis: After destroying the Collector base and saving the galaxy, the crew of the SR2 Normandy go on shore leave. Hilarity Ensues. Pretty much one giant reference to "Banned from Argo" by Leslie Fish & the Dehorn Crew -- a song about spacers misbehaving so badly as to become Personae Non Gratae.
  • Comments: Basically, Shepard is nursing a colossal hangover while Garrus gives her a whole shopping list of the crazy shit she and her crew has done. A fun read.
    • BioWare take note: an interlude like this would be perfect for Mass Effect 3. It would be a great way to develop the characters and a nice breath of fresh air between drama-heavy missions.
    • User:Alynnidalar would like to second the recommendation for this one. It is hilarious!
      • Hilarious and in character to boot! The entire piece is so utterly hilarious that I almost didn't realize it, but if you consider both their personalities and the circumstances, everyone's behavior is completely believable! Seriously, someone get this to Bioware's attention pronto!

Threesome by Remenants

  • Recommended by Anthurak
  • Synopsis: FemShepard, Garrus and Tali get to know each other better. Not what it sounds like! Honest!
  • Comments: A fun little one-shot. Won't spoil anything, but quite funny. Any Garrus or Tali fan will enjoy.

Mass Effect: Records of an Irken Defective by KiwiDayDreams

  • Recommended by Kalaong and Navllyk
  • Synopsis: FemShepard is summoned back to Earth to investigate an... oddity. She ends up adding the saddest, most obnoxious alien invader in existence to her squad. Invader Zim.
  • Comments: Start reading and feel something inside your head snap and slide sideways. Jhonen Vasquez's insanity meets BioWare epicness. Even Legion's mind is blown. You get your first hint that not all is comedy when it is discovered that the Reapers turned the Irkens into the Citadel's Keepers. Then Zim is taken back to Irk only to find that the Reapers wiped out his species. Poor Zim.

Mass Effect: Grunt Sticks It In by Gregg Landsman

  • Recommended by User:Liangnui
  • Synopsis: Upon deciding that hanging herself out as the cyborg carrot on a stick for the Asari Sex Vampire was not a good idea, Commander Jane Shepard decides to use her varied team of specialists to set an actual trap. In theory.
  • Comments: Similar in tone to Landsman's major work, Nobody Dies, this fic is hilarity on par with anything in this category. Special moments include Tali's reaction to LSD, Thane playing tonsil hockey with Aria, and Grunt being the bait for Morinth. And that's not even close to the entirety of the fic's comedy.
    • Horngeek: The line that killed me was Morinth not coming out because the Illusive Man is chatting her up.

Joker's List by Made Nightwing

  • Recommended by Ghastdream
  • Synopsis: From the summary: The Command Team of the Normandy SR2 are sick of Joker's pranks. They make up a list of 182 things that Joker is no longer allowed to do. Based on Skippy's List, the life and times of a Special Forces Medic.
  • Comments: Perhaps not everything on the list are in character for Joker, but it's hilarious all the same. Additions to the list by commentors can be found in the comments section.
    • YMMV: If you've read Skippy's list, there's not much new to see here.
    • Agreed. If you like reading "Things Mr. Welsh is no longer allowed to do in RPG's," "The Supervillain Checklist," or or Skippy's list, you'll like it because of that. However, this really isn't in character with Joker, or any of the ME characters, really.

Infiltrait0r N7 by ranubis

  • Recommended by ultimatepheer
  • Synopsis: We all know that Legion is deadly in combat. Rumors are he also is a gamer. Let's take a look at his interactions on the extranet...
  • Comments: Humorous, and the writer nailed the personality of both legion and the typical FPS player.
  • The best thing about this short fic is that it perfectly explains why Legion was able to overturn multiple infractions that it cheated, yet paradoxically accepts an infraction for taunting (for a machine, you'd think it would be the other way around) as according to its Shadow Broker file.

Cultural Differences by Mini Boss Majoring

  • Recommended by Sithking Zero. Seconded by Gamerex 27.
  • Pairings: M!Shep/Tali, F!Shep/Garrus (story switches between the viewpoints of two different Shepards. Romance is NOT the point of this story.)
  • Synopsis: One-shots during ME1 and ME2. With several species on the Normandy, it was rather obvious that differences between them would be mistaken at times. Continuing.
  • Comments: a more humorous look at some of the ways that humanity and the other races differ. Case in point? The first chapter contains an account of Tali tackling Shepard because she thinks he's trying to commit suicide by slitting his throat with a sharp blade. He was shaving. It only gets funnier from there.
    • This Troper was considering adding this to the recs page until he saw someone else did it first. This is a hilarious story, and every chapter gives a few great jokes and hilarious moments. The characters are also IC to a fault: one could be forgiven for thinking that an actual Bioware employee wrote this.

Mess Perfect by Epantiras

  • Recommended by Borkless
  • Synopsis: A brilliant parody comic of Mass Effect poking good natured fun at almost all aspects of the game.
  • Comments: Very funny, featuring a renegade FemShep who does actions most of us only wish were in the game.
    • Recommendation seconded by User:Alynnidalar. This fic is hilarious! Much of it is lampshading the more facepalmy moments of the two games, but there's also the hilarious characterization, humorous side stories (like Shepard's continual hitting on Jack, with painful consequences), and an exaggerated, stylized art style that is perfect for the light-hearted tone of the comic.

100 Things Commander Shepard's Crew Will Mutiny Over by The Mad Dragon

  • Recommended by decoy73
  • Synopsis: Shepard's crew, having had enough of some of her antics, has come together to compile a list of things she's no longer allowed to do.
  • Comments: Incredibly funny, in character, and forbidding all the things we have done, wish we could do, and then some. Also with shout-outs to other games and movies

Mass Effect 3 A Crucible in More Ways Than One by Sudentor

  • Recommended by Wild Goose, Tropulastic, User:USA Bobcat, Chris54325
  • Synopsis: Forget Commander Shepard and Admiral Anderson; being responsible for organizing the construction of a doomsday device with that many zany races and organizations, Admiral Steven Hackett is clearly the true, most long-suffering hero of Mass Effect 3.
  • Comments: A very crackfic take on the trials of Admiral Hackett as he supervises the construction of the Crucible, deals with being the Only Sane Man in a fleet of Crazy Awesome scientists (and just plain crazy) and tries to keep everyone focused on getting the job done. Highlights include challenging Kasumi to a Touhou duel to keep her from stealing Jacob from Bryn Cole.
    • Ahahahaha. I found this to be a very hilarious read. Definitely recommend it.

Crossover fics

The Mission Stays the Same by Ursakar

  • Recommended by User:USA Bobcat, Metal King 1417
  • Synopsis: Just after Shepard comes back from Project Overlord, days after regaining life, EDI detects a signal from the nearby planet Aite. When Shepard investigates, she finds a very confused Imperial Guard Stormtrooper and an Eldar Farseer.
  • Comments: I found this a quite interesting crossover. Captain Gallardi (the Stormtrooper) incorporates Mass Effect technology in his gear, such as Mass Effect style armor, but also keeps his hotshot lasgun, which bypasses kinetic barriers. The technology issue gets taken care of quickly, but I found that everyone was in character, Gallardi having been part of an Inquisitor's retinue and thus slightly more easy with Xenos. He still refuses to allow Mordin to inspect his weapons or armor, though he eventually starts warming up, he has not yet lost his xenophobia entirely. Shepard is female, and follows most of the Fanon Fem Shep ways, but is very much a character, not an insert or a Mary Sue. Maeteris (the Farseer) has not joined the team on a ground mission yet, and focuses more on seeing the future, though in typical Eldar fashion, will hint and nudge Shepard, but never tell her outright.

The Last Spartan by Dino Jake

  • Recommended by Gamerex27, Crow T R0bot
  • Synopsis: An AU fic in which the Halo and ME universes share the same galaxy. After a well deserved rest in Cryo-Sleep, Master Chief finally a whole new galaxy.
  • Comments: This may very well be the only well-written Halo and Mass Effect crossover this Troper has ever read. Everyone is in character, the alien races of Halo do a very nice job of changing up many different events in the game (all for the better), and the few OC'S in it (which are not introduced until chapter 10) are very realistic and engaging characters.

Hammerhand by Colonel Mustard

  • Recommended by: hodaza
  • Synopsis: A cross over with Warhammer 40000: While on their way to battle the Greenskins, Captain Malleus of the Sons of Thunder and his command squad are hit by a shock attack gun and blasted all the way back to the early 3rd millenium. Shepard is dead, human colonies are disapearing and its time for the Astartes to do what the Astartes were made to do. Long, well written and finished.

Renegade by Peptuck

  • Recommended by corin, User:Medicus, User:USA Bobcat, Deep Recon
  • Synopsis: A Mass Effect/Command and Conquer Crossover/Alternate Universe fic that replaces the Mass Effect Earth with Tiberium Earth, with GDI taking over the role of the Systems Alliance, that follows the plot of the original game. Female Colonist Sole Survivor/War Hero Shepard who appears to be a combination Vanguard/Adept. Not yet clear whether she's Paragon or Renegade.
  • Comments: Inspired by a discussion on story thread here.) Essentially serves as a novelization of the game that explores how different everything would be if GDI replaced the Alliance, and how their technology and Tiberium would dramatically influence politics, i.e. Nod intervenes in the slaver attack on Elysium, GDI goes to war with the Batarian Hegemony, the Scrin were behind Akuze and Eden Prime, etc. The story is still relatively new, however, so there's no idea when it will be updated.
    • I cannot recommend this highly enough. For one, it got me to look more into Command and Conquer, something that I'd always dismissed as an Excuse Plot. And as a fan of Alternate History, I loved how things developed differently, particularly the more militarised Systems Alliance/GDI. Usually I don't care much for FemShep, but here she's wonderful. As for the characters: tiberium mutant Kaidan? Zone trooper Ashley? Yes please. Sadly, it's updated very slowly - a burst of updates, then only one more. Put it in your alert list.
    • My favorite fanfic of all time. And even if you don't know Command and Conquer, I have three words for you: Spectre Garrus Vakarian.
    • Definitely seconded. This isn't Mass Effect with GDI in place of the Alliance, it is a true mixture. Basic example: With the aggressiveness of GDI Foreign Policy, the Council expands the number of Spectres, leading to Spectre Garrus Vakarian, who the Author himself described as "Turian Jack Bauer meets the Kool-Aid Man."
    • Good fics are already hard to find, that much is well-documented. Good crossover fics is a contest of finding a minority group within a minority group, but Renegade is one of those wonderful few. There is a minor change in tone for readers going from chapter one to seven in one sitting (as this troper did), from rather dark 'n gritty to downright funny, but when the comedy is genuinely entertaining (good comedy fics being another minority among minorities), it's more than excusable. Well-worth the read. --Deep Recon

Eagle's Fall by CharNobyl

  • Recommended by Zaptech, User:USA Bobcat
  • Synopsis: Established in the same setting as Renegade, this story covers the First Contact War between GDI and the Turian Hierarchy - specifically, the bloody ground war that resulted in the alternate timeline of that story.
  • Comments: A well-written, gritty, and realistic depiction of how a war between GDI and the Hierarchy would have played out. Indications of a Gambit Pileup are starting to show as both the asari and Brotherhood of Nod agents have begun to appear.
    • User:USA Bobcat: Now completed, this is a great read. Even if you don't believe mean, believe Peptuck himself! Peptuck has declared that he considers this to be the canon (well, fanon) prequel to Renegade, and Char-Nobyl is working alongside Peptuck on Renegade, including incorporating elements from Eagle's Fall. Fans of this story, rejoice! Specialist Locke lives! And is confirmed to being appearing in Renegade!

When there was a Tomorrow by General Rage

  • Recommended by Lord Gale, Crow T R0bot, User:USA Bobcat
  • Synopsis: Halo/Mass Effect. Takes place Post-ME2 and Shadow Broker DLC. Noticing an anomoly out in the far reaches of space, Shepard takes the Normandy crew in to investigate. "Just Recon," is all. Until they find a wormhole that reads similarly to Reapers, with Covenant ships pouring out of it. The Author ships Shepard/Tali.
  • comments: Despite many a spelling error, this is amazingly well written. The characters are all faithful to the source material, both the Mass Effect AND Halo characters. This story is better appreciated if you've read the Halo Novels, but even if you haven't it's highly reccomended. The firefights are exciting, the drama intense, and the humor well written. The story updates slowly, due to the sheer SIZE of the chapters- at LEAST 20k per chap, if not MORE.
    • Now has its own page.
    • Eh... YMMV. The blatant exposition, and the fact that Shepard suddenly speaks like a native of the southern United States might put people off. It is quite grating whenever I read Shepard asking if "He can help ya out."

Records of an Irken Defective by KiwiDayDreams

  • Recommended by Lord Gale
  • synopsis: Mass Effect/Invader Zim. A post-ME2 fic, in which (fem)Shepard is called to Earth to investigate a mysterious death in an old abandoned house, only to confront some sort of deranged, psychotic robot. The fight escalates, and they stumble upon a stasis pod containing a certain green Invader, asleep since the year 2025...
  • comments: This story begins as comedy, with a bit of ingenious series-mixing here and there, and great characterization typical of good Mass Effect Fanfiction until we arrive at the fate of the rest of IRK. This fic is not the bright and happy crossover this troper expected in the slightest, but then again, given the source material... Regardless of how horrifying it was for this troper, this is a very intriguing and well written fic, and if you have the stomach to watch Tali nearly drown, then by all means, read it.

In the Shadow of Gods by Anne Whyne

  • Recommended by Farmer Kyle
  • Synopsis: A Mass Effect/Halo crossover, this takes place not long after Abigail Shepard and her team have destroyed the Collector Base. They come across the remains of a giant of a ship, "like a whale against the Normandy's dolphin" to use the author's comparison, that doesn't match any known models. Shepard decides to investigate it, and they find the bisected ship's only two inhabitants, an A.I. and a soldier both far from home.
  • Comments: One of the better crossovers of its kind, and a great fanfic all around. Shepard here is Paragon, with dashes of Renegade to keep things interesting. Also doesn't speed up the trust issue between John and the rest of the team, especially after Cortana tries to hack EDI. Great characterizations all around, the fights are well done, and overall a great story!

Ghost Story (FF.Net version) by Nuts!/Norwest (TV Tropes page)

  • Recommended by User:Gentlemens Dame 883
  • Synopsis: The Dresden Files crossover, spoilers for the end of Changes and start of the eponymous canonical book. Harry Dresden is dead, and so is John Shepard circa Bring Down the Sky. Orders on high come in to send them back to the land of the living... The other guy's land of the living.

The Babylon Effect by Andrew James Williams

  • Recomended by kilroy11235
  • Synopsis: A pre-ME1 crossover with Babylon 5; The Terran Systems Alliance, a member of Citadel Space, encounter the Minbari and accidently kill their leader. The resulting war goes a little differently.
  • Comments: Mass Effect already had a Babylon 5 feel to it, and this blends them together quite well, giving a plausible reason why the races from both stories never originally encountered each other.

(Exodus of Stars) by keiranhalcyon2010

  • Recommended by Metal King 1417
  • Synopsis: BattleTech crossover. Aleksandr Kerensky has led the war weary Star League Defense Force on a two year long journey into exile. A chance decision leads to a long awaited discovery, and final proof that humanity is not alone in the cosmos.
  • Comments: There are several interesting changes to the canon that make this interesting, even for a Fusion Fic/AU, one of the most notable being Humanity making a peaceful first contact with the Quarians, as opposed to the usual canon and violent first contact with the Turians. All together a good read.
  • Now has a page (under constuction) located here

Drift by Peptuck

  • Recommended by Zaptech, User:USA Bobcat
  • Synopsis: Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles crossover taking place over the events of Mass Effect 2. Shepard receives an update to his team dossiers: a scientist specializing in artificial intelligence named Allison Young. When he goes to recruit her, however, he quickly discovers that she is far more than she lets on.
  • Comments: What makes this story effective is the characterization of Cameron/Allison; she's presented as two semi-separate entities in one body, and has a curious duality between the cold, logical machine that is Cameron and the much more human construct that is Allison. While the action sequences are solid, the real draw is Cameron/Allison's interactions with Shepard and the larger Mass Effect setting, and how she's had to adapt over the centuries to a galaxy that distrusts AI. There are some hints of Cameron/Shepard.

Mass Effect 2: Naruto's Mission by I.K.A. Valian

  • Recommended by autopanda
  • Synopsis:Naruto wakes ten years in the future with no memory of what happened to get him there. Following the only clue he can find, he embarks on a mission to find and bring home Sasuke and Sakura who are lost in a galaxy threatened by Reapers.
  • Comments: At first, it may SEEM like a sequel fic, but the author does not have any other Mass effect/Naruto fics. It's actually pretty good, if a little bit shocking due to the fact that Naruto was indoctrinated and apparently turned into an asshole.

Harbinger by Peptuck

  • Recommended by Wild Goose
  • Synopsis: A rampage by an insane psychic on an Alliance colony draws the attention of Commander Shepard, Citadel Spectre and former FEAR point man. Events are set in motion that may mean the death of a galaxy, or salvation from the Reapers. ME/FEAR fusion. M!Shepard/Ashley.
  • Comments: Shepherd is the Pointman. Also has a Tvtropes page here.

Blood and Fire by Tavi

  • Recommended by User:Gentlemens Dame 883
  • Synopsis: The Citadel races have long been at war with the theocratic empire known as the Covenant. Decades ago they came to the rescue of the newcomer known as "humanity" when the Covenant took a hostile interest. Today, Covenant forces attack the human colony of Eden Prime... Halo/Mass Effect, takes the Fusion Fic path rather than a straight crossover.

Protoculture Effect by Cyclone

  • Recommended By SAMAS
  • Synopsis: Another in the "Systems Alliance is replaced by Sci-Fi series X" class of fanfics, this time it's Robotech. The Sentinel Alliance is an entire rival bloc to the Citadel, with tensions running high after the aborted wars against the Turians and Batarians. Join controversial Human Spectre John Shepard and Lt. Commander Jane Hunter as they hunt down the rogue Spectre Saren.
    • Cyclone (the author) here. Nice to see my story here, but don't forget to check out the Codex, which includes some entries not found attached to the main story.

Consuming Direct Control by Hyliian

  • Recommended By Metal King 1417, User:USA Bobcat
  • Synopsis: With nothing left for him in the galaxy but empty space and idle time, Alex Mercer finds himself recruited in Commander Shepard's fight against the Collectors. Crossover with Prototype.
  • Comments: A rather humorous fic if I ever saw one. Mercer's hyjinks driving Shepard bonkers is too much for anyone to resist. The only real flaw, as admitted by the author is the slight bit of over focusing on Alex, though it is almost always bearable.

Glorious Shotgun Princess by Gregg Landsman

  • Recommended By Fenix, seconded by Gamerex27
  • Synopsis: The Exaltation of the Unconquered Sun is a tricky thing. Especially when it doesn't come with an manual. Jane Shepard, who was able to talk Spectres into suicide before getting a spiritual superweapon grafted to her soul, has a new advantage. Crossover with Exalted.
  • Comments: It's written by the same author who wrote Nobody Dies. Notable moments include Shepard literally punching the Kepral's Syndrome out of Thane.
    • I second this fic. Before i read it, I had no idea what Exlated was, nor did I have any desire to play it or any other tabletop RPGs. Now, I have a strong urge to do so. The purpose of the Exalted blends seamlessly with facing the threat of the Reapers. Even more remarkable is the fact that, even with all the added powers, Shepard still comes off as a realistic character with minimal Sue-ish qualities.

Mass Effect: Human Revolution by IgnusDei

  • Recommended By Kalaong
  • Synopsis: The empty years between the present day and the discovery of the Prothean Ruins on Mars are filled in with the three Deus Ex games... and end with the Templars winning the Invisible War. Humanity is a bioconservative shadow of its canon glory. But fear not, Honest Corporate Executive David Sarif saw it all coming, and preserved his technology, researchers, himself, and Adam Jensen as Human Popsicles. Unfortunately, after more than a century on ice, only Adam made it to the 2170's - and barely makes it off Earth ahead of the torch-waving Muggles. But even off-world, Adam just can't stay out of trouble he never asked for. His first attempt to put down roots is on Elysium, and only his (suppressed!) rescue of the colony from batarian raiders enables him to leave the planet intact. He seems to find a home on the Citadel itself, distinguishing himself as Garrus Vakarian's partner in C-Sec. Only Commander Shepard, fresh from the attack on Eden Prime, gets herself assassinated hours after she sets foot on the Citadel. Adam Jensen never asked for this, but someone has to stop Saren - and he's better equipped than anyone else in the galaxy to do it.
  • Comments: Conspiracies, cyborgs and snark hit the Mass Effect universe hard enough to knock out a charging krogan. The author is a transhumanist who was disappointed with Mass Effect 3's endings, and has chosen this combination of extropian promise and old-fashioned Badass to set it right. Prepare for asari terrorists taken out with thrown fridges, naive sentinels driven to distraction with CASIE mods, and krogan sucker-punched by inert ultra-tensile carbon fists.


  1. How Mass Effect should have been
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