Return to the Mass Effect Universe with friends and enemies new and old!
What They Say:
Urdnot Wrex—one of the most dangerous mercenaries in the galaxy—crosses paths with a mysterious secret agent in this explosive adventure!
Writer: Mac Walters
Artist: Tony Parker
Colorist: Michael Atiyeh
Cover Artist: Benjamin Carre
If nothing else, the Foundation comic series for the Mass Effect feels in many ways equal parts nostalgia trip for the fans, and the creators way of exploring some more of the backstories for so many of the characters that grew to be iconic and interesting over the franchises three game arc. We know what happens to these characters. We helped to shape their lives and destinies, but we don’t know a lot about where they came from or who they were before they joined Shepherd’s band of adventurers and bad-asses out to save the galaxy from certain destruction.
The twist from the end of the first issue now sinks in fully and we are finally introduced to the man character of the series – a woman named Rasa who is working for the Illusive Man, though we still haven’t been told much about what he does or is scheming at this point. She is being supported by Kai Leng, another figure from the series, in an operation to try and get one of the Shadow Brokers agents to turn over to their side. However, as with most things in the Mass Effect world, this is complicated by one Urdnot Wrex being sent to assassinate Rasa’s target. The target turns out to be none other than Fist (a name mentioned a few times in the games as well). Rasa and Wrex narrowly avoid crossing paths all over the citadel, trying to reach their target first while avoiding the other one. Rasa employs stealth, deception, and a little bit of comical trickery to slow Wrex down, and Wrex…does what Wrex does best. Which is to constantly shoot, kick, punch, or explore the obstacles in front of him.
The story continues to get complicated with the introduction of Saren, a SPECTRE (basically galaxy-wide black ops) playing his hand out as well. While I won’t spoil for you how the confrontation goes down, it is clear by the end of the second issue that Foundation is taking place before the events of the first game in the series and that it feels like we are building towards something – many important characters are being put into play, and we are getting insights into the lives that many of them lived prior to their introduction in the series. What Saren, Wrex, Rasa, Fit, and The Illusive Man all have to do with each other, or what sort of information the Shadow Broker has that would make people simultaneously be willing to kill and pay for it, is also of a mystery and something readers can look forward to getting answers about in the coming issues.
As I said earlier, this story feels like equal parts “let’s give the fans more” and “let’s write more stories that explore things we didn’t get a chance to in the games”. At its core this is a series for the fans by the writers of the second and third games. While newcomers to the Mass Effect series may find this an interesting point of entrance into the franchise, the allure of the story or the impact of the names of the characters will be somewhat lost. The writing feels very much like its predicated that when certain names are dropped, or we see a panel with a new character to the book that we recognize, we are suppose to get excited – after all, we’re seeing the return of many of the beloved personalities and races that made the Mass Effect series so popular in the first place. As a long time fan of the series I’m excited to see where the next eleven issues take us, but for people who are not fans of the series, this may be one you might better be saved for sitting out – until you play the games, that is.
Grade: B+ for fans of the series, D for non-fans or people unfamiliar with the Mass Effect universe