Rank the Squadmates
#1
Rank them all
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#2
My personal ranking for Mass Effect complete with reasons:

  1. Garrus: Badass, snarky, strong and consistent development, great personal quest, love the relationship with Shepard and it feels natural
  2. Miranda: Underrated character. Awesome actress, very clever deconstruction of Mary-Sues, strong character arc (particularly in 2), and some really great character moments.
  3. Mordin: Absolutely hilarious a good chunk of the time, and another strong character arc. Lots of memorable moments and consistently manages to steal the scene.
  4. Thane: Spiritual assassin stuff is interesting and original, as is the terminal illness. Works together to make a character who should seem unsympathetic/immoral to be among the most sympathetic characters who, while morally complex, feels firmly on the side of good. Unique and memorable perspective; awesome race design. Like his personal quest quite a bit. Do wish ME3 handled him better.
  5. Legion: Underused. That said, easily one of the most interesting characters on this list. Geth Hivemind stuff was creative and unique, and makes for a very memorable squadmate with a completely different perspective. Plus, he can be kind of hilarious at points. "Geth do not intentionally infiltrate."
  6. Kaidan: If you *ever* told me Kaidan would make my personal top 10, let alone #6, when I first played, I'd have probably said you're nuts, but he's grown on me every playthrough. Underrated character. Takes on what is essentially the role of "straight man" of the series and fills it really well. Bounces off the other squadmates really well in banter/interactions. The actor is really good. Surprisingly high amount of depth/complexity/development to Kaidan. And to top it off, pretty awesome bisexual representation and Kaidan/M!Shep's romance is my personal favorite of the series. Also like that he's fairly autonomous at points.
  7. EDI: She's hilarious, and I love her jokes/trolling. Beyond that, EDI/joker make for a cute couple. Her character arc is interesting, and watching EDI struggle with what it means to be a person, her morality, etc. is easily one of the more interesting character arcs of the series.
  8. Tali: Boy did Tali come a long way since ME1, where she was a walking codex entry. Really grew by leaps and bounds during 2 and 3. Her adorkable personality is done well, functioning nicely in a little sister (if unromanced) type role to Shepard (and the romance itself is cute too). It's also great great watching her grow in confidence and capability over the trilogy.
  9. Wrex: Lots of love for Wrex. Everyone's favorite badass Krogan bestie. The merc stuff is fun. The bromance with Shepard, while not quite as great as Shep/Garrus' bromance, is up there. And, of course, whenever Wrex gets focused on Tuchanka and the future of the Krogan, it's awesome. Being tied into one of the very best arcs of ME3 and being one of the only companions who can turn on Shepard (For very good reasons too) in 1/3 doesn't hurt either. As I said before, I *like* characters with autonomy.
  10. Grunt: Loooove. Hilarious, badass, and consistently interesting/entertaining/memorable. No shortage of great moments, and really only falls victim to the above ones being so good. I guess his Loyalty Quest could be more interesting, but I still like it and that's really nitpicking an otherwise strong character.
  11. Samara: I really like her (ridiculous cleavage aside). Her strict code is very interesting and makes for someone unique and memorable as a truly locked in Lawful Good character, which makes for a great contrast to ME2's cast. Morinth subplot is great. If I had a criticism, it'd be they don't use Samara's code as much as they should. Making her swear an oath of overriding loyalty to Shepard was a huge mistake; it'd be a lot more interesting to have Samara having to consistently manage the terms of her code with the demands of Shepard and the mission, potentially even with her turning on you like some Dragon Age companions have. Underutilized potential there.
  12. James: Newbie character in ME3 probably should've been a complete disaster. And I'd last seen FPJ act in the 90s, which didn't raise my hopes (turns out, he's good at it now).  Was totally wrong. James is funny, well-developed, and fits in nicely. I like his friendship with Steve a lot, and he's got a lot of good moments throughout 3.
  13. Kasumi: The first of ME2's DLC characters. I actually quite liker her; she's fun, flirty, upbeat with a good sense of humor, a fun loyalty mission, and a lot of memorable moments/abilities. She's mainly just held back because: A) pretty limited on content, B) this is a strong ensemble overall.
  14. Zaeed: The second of ME2's DLC characters. 14 may seem low, but I quite like him. The grizzled merc veteran stuff is a bit tropey, but the actor and writing bring some interesting flair to the guy and keep him entertaining and memorable enough. He falls victim to being a DLC character in ME2, which really limits the content he gets. It's too bad they couldn't fit Omega into the base game of ME3 (Zaeed's plot included), because he'd likely shoot up some in this ranking if they had.
  15. Javik: First one on this list I'm not huge on. Last living Prothean stuff is inherently interesting, and he has some funny/memorable moments. But on a whole, Javik never quite did it to me. His douchebaggery/racism/know-it-all-ness is obviously intentional, and Javik does have redeeming qualities. I don't have an issue with flawed characters, but he just gets a bit grating for me at points and never really won me over. Shrug.
  16. Jack: I never clicked with her. "Badass edgy tough girl who's been through a lot of traumatic shit and has anger issues" isn't necessarily a favorite trope of mine (Rebecca from HTGAWM says hi), though it admittedly can be done well. Jack annoys me a lot in ME2, honestly, but my biggest issue with her is most her growth goes down offscreen. It's a lot easier to tell players a character arc occurred between games than to actually show it going down, and it's not a tactic I care for. Which is going to come back to haunt *someone* in this ranking with a vengeance.
  17. Jacob: "Former Alliance Black Ops soldier who is duped into joining terrorist organization for greater good and is morally conflicted about it" should be an absolute freebie when it comes to an interesting and complex character. Which speaks volumes to just how much these writers failed with Jacob since he is *not*. Some of it is a lack of interesting convos (which Jacob ends when they get going), most is his disaster of a loyalty mission, which is focused on tracking down Jacob's deadbeat dad who abandoned him (...not problematic at all /s) instead of exploring character complexities.
  18. Ashley: I actually like her well-enough in ME1. She's definitely got flaws (implicit racial prejudices, stubborn, a bit abrasive), but they're intentional and she has some interesting nuances too, such as the religion, a more complex examination of implicit racism, and or her family dynamics. The main reason she's here is ME3, where, in the words of *her own former writer*, she's "a sex object with a gun." She's stripped of all those interesting nuances, given a ridiculous and sexist makeover, and we're just left with an abrasive, one note character. So tragic.
  19. Liara: I know people love her, and I'm genuinely happy for them, but I ***hate*** this character. Her writing and characterization is an inconsistent mess, with most her "growth" happening offscreen and between games. And if I don't give Jack a pass for relatively natural growth occurring offscreen, I am definitely not going to give Liara a pass for developing into an entirely different person. Twice. I also don't care for how aggressively the writers force her on the player despite the fact that, realistically, her key plot relevance ended after relaying the Mars intel. And to top it all off.... I just personally never found her interesting.  

The hardest to rank were easily Slots 6-9, particularly 6/7. I'm pretty solid on mine, but I really had to stop and think. I also got carried away with longer explanations by the end. Oh well. rom. Was tempted to throw in the prominent NPCs/Crew Members too (so Joker, Steve, and Traynor), but decided not to for now. Didn't bother with MEA.
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So either I`m making up a story for dramatic effect, or I`m the only one telling the truth in a room full of liars!
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