Critical Decisions in Mass Effect 1 refers to the main dialogue and action choices you will encounter during the game. The decision you make during certain situations will impact not only on your Morality but also in the progress of both the current game and the complete Mass Effect Trilogy. Below you can find what are widely considered the most important decisions to be made during Mass Effect 1.


All Critical Decisions in Mass Effect 1


Recruiting Garrus Vakarian

  • After recruiting Garrus Vakarian, he will be by your side during all the campaign. By making this decision, Garrus will be familiar with Shepard when they reunite during Mass Effect 2.
  • If you decide just not to recruit Garrus Vakarian during your playthrough, then he will not appear during Mass Effect 1 main story. Therefore, in Mass Effect 2 Shepard and Garrus will be vaguely remembered from their last meeting at the Citadel Tower.


Recruiting Urdnot Wrex

  • After recruiting Urdnot Wrex, he will be by your side during all the camping. Please notice that you will have the opportunity to kill him at Virmire when Captain Kirrahe emphatically states that Saren has found a cure for the genophage, and it needs to be destroyed. If Urdnot Wrex does not die, then he will appear in both Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3 as the leader of the Clan Urdnot.
  • Ignoring Urdnot Wrex at the elevator will impact on both Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3 as Urdonot Wrex will be assumed to be dead. The clan will be led by his brother Wreav. 


Finding Liara T'Soni

When you are looking for Liara T'Soni in the Artemis Tau cluster you can complete a variety of missions before. Her reaction to you will depend on how many missions you achieve before meeting her.


  • When you find Liara T'soni after your first or second Mission World, she will behave normally but distressed. 
  • If you find Liara T'soni after completing Feros and Noveria, she will believe Shepard and the Squad is a hallucination she created not to get mad until she gets rescued by you. 
  • If you find Liara T'soni after completing Virmire, she will believe Commander Shepard is a hallucination, and she will be scared of the Krogan Battlemaster when you escape. Later, during the Normandy debriefing Liara will show herself annoyed for consider that the team has wasted her years of research, but Shepard will settle her down.


Feros: Fate of the Colony

During this mission you will face the survival of the Colony. Their fate will be decided by a survival test based on completing side quests, using Charm or Intimidate to persuade Fai Dan, or using special gas grenades to help save the colony.

  • If you manage to save the colony by passing the colony check, then the Illium: Medical Scans assignment will be unlocked in Mass Effect 2. Besides, if you decide not to harm neither the colony and Sheila, then the colony will help to the war effort in Mass Effect 3
  • If you fail in passing the colony check, then the colony will be shut down and the Illium: Medical Scans assignment will not be available in Mass Effect 2 and the colony will not help with war effort in Mass Effect 3.


Noveria: The Rachni Queen


X57: Bring Down the Sky

  • If you choose to save the hostages at the end of the X57: Bring down the Sky mission, Balak will flee, and you will have to defuse all three bombs before saving the hostages. By doing this, Balak will reappear during the Citadel: Batarian Codes mission in Mass Effect 3.
  • If you decide to chase Balak it will result in the death of the hostages, then you will have to fight Balak and his soldiers. This will end in Balak not appearing again during the Trilogy, as he will be dead or in Alliance custody.


Virmire: Wrex and the Genophage

After you learn that Saren has found a cure for the Genophage in the lab during the Mission on Virmire, Wrex can live or die:

  • If Wrex lives, then you can persuade him to stand down if you have 8 Charm points or completed the Wrex: Family Armor previously. Then, you will be able to persuade Wrex to stand down, and he will reappear in Mass Effect 2 as the Clan Urdnot leader. In Mass Effect 3 you have to truly cure the Genophage so Wrex helps to the war effort. On the other hand, if you decided to sabotage the cure, Shepard will be forced to execute Wrex when he finds out.
  • If Wrex dies, his brother Wreav will take his place in Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3. Wreav will not support as much as his brother in the war effort. However, you can sabotage Genophage's cure without him realizing it.


Virmire: Kaidan and Ashley

At the end of the Virmire missions, you will be faced with the decision to save Kaidan or Ashley. Whoever is not rescued will die and will not appear again for the rest of the Trilogy. Whoever is rescued will appear briefly in Mass Effect 2, then occupy an important place in Mass Effect 3, and you can re-recruit them into your squad.


Saren Conversation on Virmire

Once you are about to finish the Virmire Mission, you will talk with Saren about his Alliance with Sovereign. At the end of the conversation, you can choose "It's already happened!" or "You are indoctrinated" to get Persuasion options. Then, choosing "Join me" or "Sovereign will betray you" will make it easier to persuade Saren the next time talk to him at Citadel, as the Persuasion option will be reduced from the original 12 points to 9 Charm points. 


Final Saren Conversation

During your last talk to Saren, you can persuade him to resist the Reaper Implants. If you chose the Charm-Intimidate option in the previous Virmire's conversation, you will need 9 points to persuade him instead of the original 12 points. In case you do not meet the required points, then you have to choose "This is pointless".

  • If you choose to Charm / Intimidate Saren, Shepard will persuade him to kill himself, so that he cannot further harm the galaxy on behalf of the Reapers. This avoids the first half of his boss fight.
  • On the other hand, if you choose "This is pointless" then Shepard will have to fight Saren while he is on his floating platform. This will be the last time you and Saren encounter on Virmire.


The Destiny Ascension

  • If you decide to save the Destiny Ascension during this mission, then the Citadel Council will be protected and will appear again during Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3. The ship will also play an important role in contributing significantly to the war effort, but it will reduce the human contribution.
  • Instead, ff you focus on Sovereing, the ship will be destroyed, and the Citadel Council will die. Because to this, at the end of the game you will have the option to create a Human-only Council that will appear in Mass Effect 2.


The Human Councilor

Your actions during the final Mission will allow you to choose between Udina and Anderson to join and lead the Citadel Council. However, this will only have an impact in Mass Effect 2. Udina will be the Human Council in Mass Effect 3 regardless who you choose.


Citadel: Fist's Fate

During your attack to the Chora's Den you can choose to kill or not its owner Fits. This can be decided by you or by Wrex who has been hired to kill him.

  • If Wrex is not present, and you decide to spare Fist, then you can meet him again at the Afterlife Club Omega in Mass Effect 2, where he will angrily tell you that you have ruined his life. Then, in Mass Effect 3 Fist he will reappear as a burned skeleton somewhere in the Citadel.
  • If Wrex is present or if you decide to kill Fist by yourself, then he will not appear again in the Trilogy. After killing Fist by yourself, once you return to the C-Sec elevator Wrex will reward you with the Fist's bounty. 


Citadel: Rita's Sister

UNC: Hostile Takeover

  • If you decide to spare Helena Bake at the end of UNC: Hostile Takeover assignment, then she will reappear in Mass Effect 2 at Afterlife's in Omega. If you persuaded her to disarm her gang, she will become a social worker. If you did not persuade her, she will have joined forces with Aria T'Loak
  • On the other hand, if you choose to kill Helena Blake, then she will not appear again during the Trilogy.


UNC: Rogue VI

  • If you complete the UNC Rogue IV assignment and Shepard acts hostile when he finds out about EDI, then Miranda will use it to indicate that Shepard does not like AI, which will unlock additional dialogue options with Miranda and EDI. Shepard will also learn through a conversation with EDI that this situation was a Cerberus experiment in controllable AI. Later in Mass Effect 3, Shepard will learn that this AI was EDI. If UNC: Rogue IV assignment was completed, Shepard will realize how much it has changed since then.
  • If the UNC: Rogue IV assignment is not completed, then when Shepard finds out EDI was the AI involved in the incident, he will  mention they just overheard about it.


Hanging Up on the Council

  • After completing all the Mission Worlds and debriefing with your squadmetas, then you can report back to the Council. During each call at one point, Shepeard will be question about his decisions. 
  • If you decide to hang up on each call, then the Council will show frustrated with Shepard ion the next calls and they will ask you if you are asking if you are fooling around with them. Then in Mass Effect 3, Joker wil remeber you use to hang up on them. 


UNC: Asari Diplomacy

  • If you complete complte the UNC: Asari Diplomacy asssingment then at the beggining of Dossier: The Assassin, Shepard will remember how they were manipulated by Nassara , and she will also remember it at the end of the Mission.
  • If the assignment is not completed, then the confrontation will no exist, so Shepard and Nassara will not remember each other in the future.


Garrus' Attitude

  • While talking to Garrus during Garrus: Find Dr. Saleon Assigment, you can choose the Paragon dialogue path to make Garrus behave more lawful. Then when you meet him again in Mass Effect 2, he will tell you that he tried to join C-Sec but found he couldn't do much after Saren's attack on Citadel.
  • On the other hand, if you go on with the Renegade path, then he will show a more enthusiastic attitude. Later, when you meet him again in Mass Effect 2, he will tell you that he tried to become a Spectre but he failed. During Garru's Loyalty Mission he will be confused when you ask him to behave in a more restrained manner.


Tali and the Geth

Once you have finished the UNC: Geth Incursions Side Quest, you can chose the following paths:

  • Allow Tali to keep a copy of the Geth data. Later during Freedom's Progress in Mass Effect 2, you can use the Geth Data as a proof by choosing the dialogue option "I'll prove it's really me". By doing this, Tali will quickly trust you and you will also earn additional Paragon points.
  • You can deny or avoid giving Tali the Geth Data. Then, during Freedom's Progress in Mass Effect 2 Tali will not easily trust you are Shepard as you can not us the Geth Data to prove it.


 UNC: Hades' Dogs

  • If you complete the UNC: Hades' Dogs, then in Mass Effect 2 both Miranda anda Tali will mention these events. Besides, Tela Vaisr will also reference Shepard's role in these events during the Lair Shadow Broker. 
  • On the other hand, if you do not complete this assigment, then these events will not be mentioned at all. 


Asari Writings /  Data Recovery / Elkoss Combine License

  • If Conrad Verner survive and you complete these three assignments, then during the Medi-Gel Sabotage mission in Mass Effect 3, Conrad Verner will add this information to his Dark Energy Dissertation, increasing from one to four its Military Strentgh.
  • If you do not complete the three tasks, then Conrad's Dark Energy Dissertation will only feature Strentgh Military 1. Please note that if Conrad dies before this point, then you will not obtain the dissertation at all. 


Citadel: The Fourth Estate


Citadel: Family Matter

  • If you complete the Citadel: Family Matter assignment, then you can meet the couple again in Mass Effect 2 where their dialogue will be influenced by the decisions you made during the assignment. The couple will also appear in Mass Effect 3 at the Presidium Commons after "Priority: Palaven", where Shepard will remember them.
  • If you decide not to complete the assignment, then the couple will not appear during Mass Effect 3. However, they will be present in Mass Effect 3 at the Presidium Commons but Shepard will not remember them.


Noveria: Parasini's Fate

When you are about to finish this mission, you can choose how to resolve Gianna Parasini's investigation into Administation Anoleis, which determines if Parasini survives or not.

  • If he decides that Parasini is an internal affairs agent, they will meet in his office and have a heated argument and both will die. Given this, Parasini will not appear in Mass Effect 2, so you will not have to complete the "Illium: Giana Parasini" assignment.
  • On the other hand, if you decide to complete the mission by any other way or get a Garage Pass without Gianna Parasini help, then she will survive. Given this, she will reappear in Mass Effect 2 in the "Illium: Gianna Parasini" assignment. When you meet Parasini, her mood will depende on how you completed the investigation. 


Citadel: The Fan

  • At the final stage of the "Citadel: The Fan" assignment, if you have at least 2 points in Charm / Intitimidate, you can use it to convince Conrad to walk away. Then, he will appear again in Mass Effect 2
  • Instead, if you decide to use any of the "It's a bad idea", "It's not going to happen" or "No" dialogue options, then Conrad will go away to later die in a confontration with the Turians. Then Conrad will not be present in Mass Effect 2 nor Mass Effect 3.


Virmire: Assisting Kirrahe's Team

  • During this mission you can choose to destroy the Flyers so Kirrahe will live and Mordin will remember that in Mass Effect 2. Kirrahe will also appear on Sur'Kesh in Mass Effect 3.
  • On the other hand, if you decide not to destroy the Flyers, then Kirrahe will die once you get outside the base. Given this, Mordin will give praise him in Mass Effect 2. Besides, in Mass Effect 3, Tolan will replace Kirrahe on Sur'Kesh. 


Virmire: Rana Thanoptis

  • If you decide to spare Rana, then she will reappear during "Dossier: The Warlord"  in Mass Effect 2. In Mass Effect 3, you will learn via email that she was indoctrinated and killed many Asari military officians, then she committed suicide.
  • If you decide to kill Frog, he will not appear again later during the Trilogy.

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