The Mass Effect trilogy is considered one of the best in gaming history and the upcoming release of Mass Effect: Legendary Edition has fans excited to hop back into Commander Shepard's saga. Throughout the games, players get to meet and build relationships with dozens of unique characters.

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Many of them are different alien races and each offers a unique perspective on the galaxy with personal stories worth exploring. While not all are god-tier, many fans consider these 10 some of the best side characters in video game history.

10 Zaeed, The Mercenary

Mass Effect zaeed

There are not many things cooler in science fiction story-telling than bounty hunters in space. Zaeed is an interesting companion in that he initially becomes a part of Commander Shepard's team due to an agreement with Cerberus, but builds a connection with them over time.

Players can help Zaeed on his previous contract in which he needed to gain control of a refinery under the control of a mercenary group he helped found. He's a classic 80's action hero from the voice and muscle to the face scar and weaponry. He just finds himself caught up in the fate of the galaxy.

9 Kasumi, The Master Thief

Mass Effect kasumi

Kasumi is a companion not every player interacted with or discovered as she was the subject of her DLC expansion for Mass Effect 2. She's a master thief and has been able to hide her identity from the vast number of enemies she's made over the years.

In some ways, she's a female Robin Hood and in other ways, she's a sci-fi version of Sam Fisher. With the DLC being included in Mass Effect: Legendary Edition, all players will be able to experience the intriguing story she has Commander Shepard step into.

8 Legion, The N7 Geth

Mass Effect legion

Almost all of the companions Commander Shepard can have in the Mass Effect trilogy happen to be alien races that are at the very least cordial with humans in one way or another. Legion is unique in that it is a Geth robot who doesn't feel the need to kill humans on sight. Shepard not only builds a relationship with Legion, but can shape Geth society through it.

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It offers a unique form of relationship in which Shepard is often teaching the Geth unit about human thought, morality, and what it means to live an independent life free of controlled programming. Of course, Legion also teaches Shepard about the Geth and how some of the Quarians didn't view them as a threat.

7 Thane, The Drell Assassin

Mass Effect thane

When people think about aliens, they rarely ever consider that these other sentient beings would be as connected to religion and spirituality as humans can be. Fans will recognize Thane Krios as a talented Drell assassin who is possibly the best in the galaxy at what he does.

What makes him unique is that he prefers to kill his targets in an up-close and intimate fashion. He's very spiritual and, because of that, he prays before every mission. Once he has eliminated his target, he will then pray for forgiveness. He also bears a tragic character flaw that rivals Mordin's in terms of heartwrenching poetry.

6 Liara, The Shadow Broker

Mass Effect liara

Not only is Liara an intelligent companion, but her studies play a key role in the overall narrative of Mass Effect. She evolves from a studious individual focused on improving her knowledge into a brilliant dealer of information who reaches powerful heights she initially didn't seem capable of.

When it comes to romantic relationships with companions, she falls only short of Tali when looking at the female characters Shepard could flirt with and build an intimate bond with. But be warned: she's come on to Shepard very strong from the beginning, so the relationship can be a bit up and down.

5 Mordin, The Very Model Of A Scientist Salarian

Mass Effect mordin

Morality and scientific discovery are often at odds with one another in the real world and in games. The Salarian known as Mordin is an individual who struggles with that on an regular basis. Despite being a doctor, he's not against taking life if the reasoning for doing so justifies the act.

He played a key role in the Krogan genophage which makes his interactions with Krogans (Wrex and Grunt specifically) quite confrontational and awkward. He presents himself as a man consumed by logic and knowledge but hides a layer of trauma and regret right under the surface. He also has a lovely singing voice.

4 Wrex, The Krogan Mercenary

Mass Effect wrex

As was mentioned with Zaeed, there are not many things cooler than bounty hunters in science fiction. Where Zaeed is a bounty hunter in a very 1980's way, Urdnot Wrex is a bounty hunter most haven't seen before. He's a large Krogan that happens to look and present himself like a bipedal intelligent rhinoceros/crocodile hybrid.

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He adds a level of nuance to Krogans as he is very much empathetic and concerned with the fate of his race following the genophage that abruptly lessened the ability for Krogans to reproduce. Shepard can develop quite the bromance with him if desired.

3 Jack, Patient Zero

Jack from Mass Effect

Commander Shepard is originally introduced to Jack when she is simply known as Subject Zero. She may be the quintessential science project gone wrong prototype that is quite common in science fiction, but the writing paints her as a much more complex human being.

Her entire life has been experienced through the lens of being seen as nothing more than a weapon or a tool. If players work on having her open up to Shepard, they'll find that the reason she puts up walls is so that she can protect herself from being hurt by anyone else. Her tattoos are one of her many tools in her intimacy-is-poison toolbox.

2 Tali, The Quarian Outcast

Tali from Mass Effect

Tali is the plucky Quarian that Shepard meets early on in the very first game. As the games progress, she becomes a fully realized character who, frankly, loses a great deal yet continues on more fiercely.

She's a kind and gentle soul who's on a mission of discovery for her Quarian people. Tali also happens to be an expert mechanic despite being young relative to her race. Her weak immune system is a product of being Quarian and forces her to wear protection at all times.

1 Garrus, The Rogue Turian

Mass Effect garrus

Most Mass Effect fans consider Garrus Vakarian to be the best companion and arguably the best secondary character in the entire trilogy. He's a duty-bound, military-minded C-Sec deserter who believes in Shepard but isn't afraid to set them straight or question poor decision-making.

The reason Garrus connected with so many players is because he's written with a real depth that makes him feel like a complete character. The history he has as a character is directly embroiled with Turian history and society. His friendship or romance with Shepard is one of the biggest rewards players are gifted with throughout all three mainline games.

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