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Take Earth from the Command and Conquer Tiberium setting, as of the end of Command and Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars, and put it in the Mass Effect setting, following the same timeline. The result? Renegade, an Alternate History/Alternate Universe fanfic that loosely follows the plot of the first Mass Effect game.

The year is 2183. The Global Defense Initiative, having formed a unified global hegemony on Earth, discovers Prothean ruins on Mars, which jumpstarts their already-advanced technology and allows them to escape the ecological hellhole that Earth has become thanks to Tiberium. Making their way into the stars, they run afoul of the Turian Hierarchy and the rest of the Citadel species. With their advanced technology and the economic power of Tiberium, GDI becomes a major independent player in galactic politics, presenting an ally for disaffected species like the krogan and Quarian Migrant Fleet. However, things aren't all rosy, as GDI finds itself locked in a drawn-out war with the Batarian Hegemony, and in the shadows, the Brotherhood of Nod is emerging, manipulating events from behind the scenes....

The story opens with then-Lieutenant Shepard, a biotic GDI Commando who finds herself forced to accept the assistance of the Brotherhood of Nod when slavers attack Elysium, and as a result is catapulted into heroism and fame. Seven years later, on the way to the GDI colony world of Eden Prime alongside a Council Spectre, she discovers an old enemy has emerged and attacked the human colony: the alien Scrin, working alongside the synthetic geth and a mysterious alien dreadnought.

Written by the same author behind Tiberium Wars and Forward. Notable for the level of depth involved in depicting the effect that a GDI-led humanity would have on the galaxy. It is indicated that this universe's Earth is set after the "good" ending to Tiberium Wars where the Liquid Tiberium Bomb was not used. The story also draws a great deal of inspiration from the canceled Tiberium game, using various designs, weapons, and uniforms from the game, such as the Integrated Combat Suit and a variant of the GD-10 weapon.

Archived story thread on Spacebattles can be found here, and Fanfiction.net version available here.

Has an official prequel in the form of Eagle's Fall by Charnobyl, which covers the Shanxi War between GDI and the Turian Hierarchy.

Not to be confused for the television series.

Examples of tropes in this fanfic:


  • All There in the Manual: Each chapter has a Codex entry at the end, similar to Mass Effect's, which details information that wouldn't be readily clear in the fanfic's narrative. The Spacebattles discussion thread also has some additional background information scattered throughout it.
    • And by "similar to", we mean "many of them are actual Mass Effect codex entries, re-written with GDI's impact".
  • Alternate Universe: Fairly obviously. Among the other things, GDI is friendly with both the quarians and the krogan, Shanxi was a bloody ground war due to GDI's heavy armor and orbital ion cannons, the Batarian Hegemony is at war with GDI, Miranda works for the Brotherhood of Nod, Kaidan is a Tiberium mutant, Akuze was a Scrin attack, Wrex and Jacob are on Eden Prime during the geth attack, Nihlus survives, Jacob takes Ashley's place on the Normandy, Charles Saracino is on the GDI Director's Board, and Garrus is a Spectre. Note also that this story ignores the events of Tiberian Twilight.
    • There are a number of smaller, aesthetic differences too, i.e. the Normandy's interior lighting is cold blue-gray and their haptic interfaces are blue instead of orange.
  • Author Appeal: In the author's own words, "Miranda + Black Nod Catsuit = Victory!"
  • Awakening the Sleeping Giant:
    • The Batarian Hegemony did this when they kept supporting raids on human space.
    • Speculation (partially supported by Word of God) is that the Scrin are hiding specifically to avoid doing this to the Reapers. And unfortunately, they seeded the wrong world with tiberium....
  • Awesome but Impractical: Firestorm barriers, per Word of God. Their power draw is enormous and they only go in one direction, and the projectors are still vulnerable to enemy fire, making them only really useful as a surface defense system with the projectors armored and buried underground. The Firestorm can be angled to create a pyramid-shaped defensive dome, but this won't work on spacecraft because they can be attacked from any angle, and the shield would draw about three times as much power as the rest of the ship's systems put together.
  • Badass Army: GDI and Nod. The former fought the Turian Hierarchy almost to a standstill on Shanxi, without much understanding of mass effect technology. The latter is implied to have some incredibly badass troops (if lacking in the raw numbers and sheer firepower of GDI). When asked what Nod's troops were like, Peptuck's response was to put up pictures of Adam Jensen, the Point Man, and a Spartan.
  • Badass Minds Think Alike: In Chapter 8, Admiral Havoc & Garrus plan to assault a warehouse full of mercs by blasting open the door and charging in with Wolverines and sixty soldiers, guns blazing. Shepherd manages to convince them to sneak in with a small team. Zaeed's plan for assaulting the warehouse is the exact same plan, adjusted for being a One-Man Army.
  • Beam Spam: GDI's approach to space combat appears to take this as its central doctrine.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Kaidan's appearance in Chapter 9, taking down Zaeed.
  • Bigger Is Better: GDI's approach to weapons engineering is generally summed as "Bigger." Then followed by "More."
  • Big Good: Kane, of all people, appears to be headed this way. Maybe.
    • Peptuck has stated that GDI and Nod forces will throw down with a Reaper however.
  • Both Sides Have a Point: The author's view on GDI and Nod (as well as the conflict between humanity as a whole and the Citadel). The author has actually stated a variation on this, which is that neither side is right, but both are wrong on certain points.
  • Chandler's Law: The assassins/kidnappers who hijack Shepard and Anderson's aircar appear to be following this.
  • Cowboy Cop: Garrus, which is lampshaded, as the chapter in which he first showcases his overly aggressive tendencies is titled "Cowboys."
  • Curb Stomp Battle: Sovereign vs. Ion Array EP-4.
  • Death World: The general perception of Earth is that it's an even deadlier world then Tuchancka with one of the key differences being that when presented with the possibility of getting off the planet like the krogan a large portion of the human population chose to stay put. Which of course lends itself to the perception of humanity as a species of crazy BAMFs by the rest of the galaxy.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Standing GDI military doctrine calls for overwhelming force in response to any attack, up to and including launching a full-scale war on one of the major galactic powers like the Batarian Hegemony.
  • Doomed by Canon: Subverted - Nihlus is still alive.
    • Played straight when it comes to Corporal Jenkins, but see below.
    • Well, zig-zagged with Jenkins, who makes it much further through the Eden Prime mission than he ought to.
  • Dying Moment of Awesome: Corporal Jenkins gets one when he gets hit by an EMP blast, then slaughters seven Geth, including one destroyer, before Saren's buzzers kill him.
  • Dynamic Entry: Garrus and Zaeed are both fans of this kind of entry.
  • Enemy Mine: Shepard working with Nod in the prologue to rescue the captives from Elysium. Of note is that Shepard is pretty much forced to do this; she's been stripped of her weapons and gear and is on a Nod ship, and they make it clear that she can either go along with them or bad things will happen.
    • Zaeed pulls this with Jacob and the GDI Marines in Chapter 9, while storming the warehouse. Both Shepherd and Jacob are alert for him to doublecross them. He does, but is foiled by Alenko.
  • For Want of a Nail:
    • Garrus' shift from a somewhat impetuous Cowboy Cop to "Jack Bauer meets the Kool-Aid Man" appears to be a direct result of GDI's presence in the timeline. Thanks to GDI aggressiveness, the Council expanded the number of Spectres, and he was given an opportunity to join. He made the choice to become a Spectre, and as a result never got the instilled restraint he would have otherwise received as a police officer. The result is a Spectre who is overly aggressive.
    • To a much lesser degree, there's Jacob Taylor. In the traditional ME timeline, he joined the Corsairs because he thought it would cut down on the red tape that the SA puts on its military, and left to join Cerberus when even Corsairs proved little better than the Marines. In the Renegade timeline, the GDI's time honored tradition of "Step 1: identify problem. Step 2: apply military force. Step 3: repeat Step 2 until problem ceases to be problematic," seems to have prevented Jacob from ever wanting to leave the standard military.
    • Zaeed's presence on the Citadel is apparently as a result of this. Due to GDI's friendliness with the krogan, Wrex got a job on Eden Prime as a bodyguard. As a result, Zaeed was the one hired by the Shadow Broker to deal with Fist.
    • Tali has already completed her pilgrimage when the story starts, which means rather than a sole Quarian on the run from Saren, she had a team of Migrant Fleet Marines with her, of which Kal'Reegar is the only survivor. This also explains the larger merc presence.
  • Frickin' Laser Beams: Nod laser weapons are particularly devastating as everyone uses kinetic barriers, which don't block them. Also, Tali packs a Nod laser weapon.
  • Gambit Pileup: The Reapers are plotting something. Kane is also plotting something. The author has hinted that other plots are in motion.The Shadow Broker got involved when sending Zaeed after the mercenaries, and now there's hints that a group called "Pheonix" is involved (with Word of God hinting that they may be this universe's equivalent of Cerberus).
  • Genre Savvy: Both Shepherd and Jacob cooperate with Zaeed's rampage - or at least stay out of his way - but anticipate he'll turn on him when the Enemy Mine is over. He does, and is also Genre Savvy enough to backstab Shepherd when Jacob's Marine platoon is too far away to intercede. Until Alenko showed up...
  • Grey and Gray Morality: The author has made it quite clear that neither GDI nor Nod are complete good guys or villains. In fact, Nod seems to get more positive points than negative ones in this timeline, though in his commentary the author notes that both the Brotherhood and GDI are different entities than they were in the Command and Conquer games, being separated by more than a hundred years.
    • In one of the author's own comments, he said that (paraphrased) "Neither side is right. However, both sides are wrong on certain points."
  • Gunship Rescue: The Orcas at the end of the fourth chapter.
  • Jerkass: Councilor Velarn.

 Velarn: No Citadel species has been so incompetently self-destructive as to let its homeworld be consumed by a mindless crystal.

    • Not a huge surprise: Velarn is, in canon, most known for being Air-Quote Turian.
  • HAD to Be Sharp: Part of what makes humanity so tough is that they survived on the only planet in the galaxy more lethal to organic life than Tuchunka.
  • Hilarity Ensues: Word for word, when Garrus goes into Chora's Den after Fist.
  • Humans Are Warriors: Even moreso than in the original timeline; humanity and the krogan are even on respectable terms, apparently because humans survived on the only planet even more lethal than Tuchanka.
  • Incoming Ham: Kane announcing to the whole galaxy that he's still alive by hacking into the holoprojectors in the Council Chamber.
  • I Shall Taunt You: According to Word of God, Councilor Velarn's Jerkass tendencies are actually deliberate efforts to piss off humans so they don't think clearly. It works on Udina, that's for certain.
  • Insult Backfire: A political variation; the Council snubbed GDI, restricting their attempts to get an Embassy on the Presidium by refusing to allow armed GDI guards. GDI instead took out a much larger, roomier, and nicer Embassy on the Wards in a private building that let them maintain a few hundred armed guards instead.
  • Implacable Ship: When Sovereign attacks Eden Prime, it takes a direct broadside from a GDI orbital defense platform, which has six dreadnought-grade ion cannons on it, without blinking.
  • Invisibility Cloak: Both Nod and GDI appear to have these (with GDI's apparently restricted to ship-based operations) Also, Tali has one.
  • Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: Garrus favors this method of questioning.

 Garrus: "Fist, we're all adults here. Let's not lie to each other. It'll just lead to tragedy for your limbs. I know you're working for Saren. Now tell me why."

  • Jet Pack: GDI makes near-ubiquitous use of these in all their armor, with the rest of the Citadel species moving to adopt them in special operations units once GDI proved their effectiveness in the First Contact War.
  • Kill Him Already: Both Jenkins and Shepard make this mistake when confronting Saren by covering him with their railguns and demanding he surrender instead of outright shooting him. In the former's case, it gives Saren time to use an ECM pulse to make his weapon think it is overheating, while in the latter, it gives Saren a time for a Scrin Mastermind to arrive and teleport him away. Shepard berates herself for this mistake immediately afterward, saying she should have shot Saren right away, and Nihlus responds by saying that yes, she should.
  • Kneecapping: This is Garrus' approach to most situations where someone needs to be kept alive.
  • MacGuffin: The Tacitus buried on Eden Prime. Lampshaded in the author's Spacebattles chapter guide.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Kane. When you're the head of an infamous terrorist/criminal/fanatical religious organization who manages to steal the Tacitus, one of the most valuable artifacts to both the Citadel and GDI, then turn around and negotiate a compromise between the two to make yourself look like the reasonable and level-headed one, you're a definite case of this.
  • Mathematician's Answer: A lot of Peptuck's responses to questions.
  • Mighty Glacier: The appropriately named Glacier-class dreadnoughts fielded by GDI, which are described as having an almost impractical amount of firepower.
  • Mini-Mecha: The REV12 Wolverine and the Turian Hierarchy's Steelclaw knockoff.
  • Noodle Incident:
    • For Zaeed, that "one very unlucky dirigible."
    • On a more serious note, whatever happened on Akuze. All that we know so far is that it involved Tiberium, the Scrin, and Shepard's face getting horribly scarred by Buzzers.
  • Not So Different: Saren says this to Nihlus during their second confrontation. Interestingly enough, Nihlus seems to agree.
  • Obstructive Bureaucrat: Both the Council and the GDI Director's Board, particularly when they find out about the Tacitus.
  • Oh Crap: the general reaction among GDI and the more informed aliens when Kane reveals himself.
    • Also the reaction of many of the readers when they realized that the Scrin and the Geth are working together and augmenting each other's tech.
      • Shepard has this reaction at the thought of Garrus and Havoc (the fifth) being in the same room. Two Crazy Awesome character working together nearly causes her to hyperventilate.
  • One-Man Army: The first chapter has Shepard eliminate 500 Batarians by herself, and it just gets better from there.
  • Patchwork Fic: Based on the outline of the first ME, but incorporates characters and elements from the second.
  • Running Gag: Garrus raids a series of warehouses by crashing through the wall of each one in a "borrowed" car. The flashback to each is recounted identically, until Shepard catches on and tells him to just skip the rest.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: GDI does not take the Batarian Hegemony's funding of pirates and slavers lightly.
  • Scars Are Forever: Shepard's face is severely scarred as a result of her experiences on Akuze apparently due to a close encounter with Scrin buzzers.
    • Partially subverted: Shepard was offered the chance to have her scars removed, but chose to keep them as a reminder.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Chapter Three:

 “That big walker,” she ordered. “We’re going to kill it with our brains.

  • Space Cold War: Between GDI and the Citadel. There was a cold war between GDI and the Batarian Hegemony, but GDI didn't take those slaver raids very well....
  • Standard Sci-Fi Fleet: Word of God has laid out that the different navies of both GDI and Nod have distinct compositions and doctrines. GDI's fleet primarily consists of carriers and lighter ships, with an emphasis on base-hopping and resource and convoy interdiction, with enormous, heavily-armed fleets for destroying hardened targets and "super-heavy carriers" based on MCV technology that are designed to supply cluster-wide operations. Nod, on the other hand, uses larger numbers of lighter cruisers, complete with long-range fighters and light carriers, with an emphasis on destroying enemy supplies and support and avoiding a decisive engagement, causing the enemy to waste resources and spread himself thin defending against constant attacks. Both navies make use of MCV/Crawler technology to let them operate deep in enemy territory.
  • Stealth in Space: Both Nod and GDI appear to have one-upped the original timeline's stealth systems; GDI has finally cracked Nod's stealth tech to develop a working optical cloak, used in conjunction with the thermal cloaking the original Normandy had. Complete with an early throwaway line about SIS being "impossible".
  • Superweapon Surprise:
    • In the background, the turians were caught a bit off-guard when they tried to assault Shanxi and ran headlong into orbital ion cannons for the first time. Unfortunately for GDI, the turians adapted pretty quickly, and Sovereign is easily able to bypass the GDI defenses by taking advantage of the ion beams moving at c to stay several light seconds out of range, taking out the ion arrays with kinetic rounds, then moving as the GDI guns spot them and return fire.
    • Word of God regarding the Scrin is that the forces seen in-game are the equivalent of a few hundred mercenaries with armored cars and assault rifles, and the true Scrin armies and navy are "an entirely different beast." Among their assets are phasing tiberium kinetic impactors with liquid-tiberium cores, short-range teleporters, phasing technology, rift missiles, and some of them use large-scale versions of the Masterminds' mind-control rigs. The implication is that the Scrin are preparing for war with the Reapers.
  • Swiss Army Weapon: The Werewolf rifle used by GDI troops is essentially a fusion of the ZF-1 and the GD-10 from the canceled Tiberium game.
  • Take That: Chapter Three's Codex entry has a jab at the canceled Tiberium game when referencing the GD-10, saying the original product was canceled for "failing to meet quality standards."
    • There's also the obligatory shot at Mass Effect 1's elevators, including a reference to the Elcor Hamlet ad.
    • [[Die Hard “You hit him with the cargo hauler while he was airborne?” she guessed, and he scoffed.
      “Of course not,” he said.]]
  • Tank Goodness:
    • GDI is still driving around "house sized masses of fuck you." (While they have not yet been described with the full phrase, the standard description is still "house-sized". Make of this what you will.)
    • Garrus hijacks a tank to capture an unarmed, injured mercenary. Make of that what you will.
  • Teasing Creator: Peptuck seems to take an inordinate amount of pleasure in doing this in the discussion thread. One of his favorite non-answers is to post a picture of David Xanatos with a smile on his face and his hands clasped before him.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill: GDI's approach to warfare is pure, unrelenting firepower coupled with Disproportionate Retribution. For comparison to the original timeline, the assault on Torfan was a costly ground attack through the pirates' tunnels. In this timeline, Torfan's base was orbitally obliterated by an ion cannon barrage that destroyed the complex and everything within fifty kilometers of the base. GDI, furthermore, has twenty defense platforms surrounding the Charon relay, each with six dreadnought-grade ion cannons on it. They're very serious about possible invasion.
    • Interestingly, this is pretty much the opposite of the System Alliance's doctrine, which emphasized flexibility and mobility.
    • Garrus has... markedly less restraint than in canon.
    • This is Admiral Havoc V's general approach to most situations. Worryingly, he assumes everyone follows the same mindset. Unsurprisingly, he and Garrus become instant friends.
  • There Was a Door: Silly mercenaries. Garrus has no use for your doors when he has a cargo hauler.
  • Those Two Guys: Jacob and Kaidan have elements of this.
  • Too Dumb to Live: One of the major points of contention between the Citadel and GDI is that the latter won't share tiberium with the former, never mind that the stuff turned one of the safest planets in the galaxy into the deadliest planet in the galaxy in less then half a century.
  • We Are Everywhere: Nod. They can apparently alter communications from the Citadel at will to obfuscate what happened at Eden Prime, and later manage to get a building-sized hologram of Kane to appear in the Council Chambers.
  • Wham! Line: You can't kill the Messiah.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Shepard gives a minor one to Garrus when he blows out the electronics of the car that the kidnappers are driving.
  • Word of God: Lots of hints are dropped by the author in the Spacebattles discussion thread. On the other hand, the author is also extremely evasive on some questions, at some points outright saying "I dunno."

 "I said there was no Kane in this chapter, and look. Not one instance of the word "Kane" anywhere in this chapter."

    • When asked if units and tech from the Red Alert series would make an appearance (He had already confirmed that the first Red Alert game exists in this continuity, post Allied victory) he simply responded with a picture of David Xanatos. Its since become his favorite response to certain questions or comments.
    • Word of God is actually Shrug of God when it comes to Shepard's appearance; with the exception of being female, severely scarred, and a biotic, all other details are left ambiguous so the reader can insert whatever appearance they think is appropriate.
      • When asked about how fast GDI's build times were, Peptuck's response was "Fast but not too fast. And no, I'm not going to be any more specific than that."
    • Peptuck has confirmed that Kal'Reegar will join Shepherd's crew alongside Tali.
  • Xanatos Gambit: Nod taking the Tacitus from Eden Prime, causing conflict between GDI and the Citadel that allows Kane to walk in and negotiate a compromise, thereby coming off as the reasonable and diplomatic one to interstellar politics. Kane even outright admits this to Shepard, who is forced to acknowledge that she can't act on the information because it make her look bad or ruin the compromise.
  • X Meets Y:
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