Most Mass Effect players focus on completing quests and romancing companions. Eventually you may want to learn more about some factions and events. Read below for a selection of the most important lore highlights, conveniently assembled in a timeline.
A titanic reaper named the Leviathan of Dis is killed by the real leviathans. The reapers start to spread mass effect technology through the galaxy and prey on the species that reach a suitable advancement level.
One race, the protheans, learns about the reapers but fail to defend against the threat. Their legacy remains under the form of the Crucible.
A nuclear war destroys the krogan homeworld of Tuchanka and the race reverts to a primitive clan system.
The asari civilization activates the mass effect relays and discovers the Citadel Station.
The Citadel Council is formed and diplomatic missions are started.
An interplanetary expedition stumbles upon a rachni after enabling a mass effect relay connected to one of the hive minds leading to the Rachni Wars.
Genetically enhanced krograns drive the rachni to extinction. The Council rewards them with several rachni homeworlds.
Beelo Gurji becomes the first Spectre , being charged with keeping the krogran expansion in check.
700 CE A krogan colony is established on Lusia, a world owned by the asari. After they refuse to leave Spectres attack the colony, sparkin the Krogan Rebellion.
After a bioweapon released by The Turians ravages the krogan population they are no longer a threat. Their military role is taken by the Turians.
Reaper servants are spotted in the Terminus Systems but the threat is dismissed by the Citadel Council.
Quarians discover that the geth, their robotic assistants, have attained sentience. They start to destroy the geth and a revolution begins.
Aria T’ Loak seizes control of the Omega Station.
Decades of industrial activity ruin the drell homeworld. They are evacuated from the planet by the hanar. The surviving drell form a symbiotic connection with the hanar, called Compact.
The first human settlement is established on the moon.
After analyzing prothean rumors on Mars humanity discovers that Charon, Pluto’s satellite, is in fact a mass relay. Humans use it to travel to Arcturus.
A number of children from Singapore are accidentally exposed to element zero. Some develop telekinetic abilities.
Turians attack humans that try to activate a relay and the First Contact War begins.
Batarians discover the remains of the Leviathan of Dis.
Humankind’s System Alliance is accepted as an associate member of the Citadel council
Pope Clement XVI is assassinated by a member of the Cerberus human paramilitary organization.
The Andromeda initiative is started
The events of Mass Effect: Andromeda start
The events of Mass Effect take place
The events of Mass Effect 2 occur.
The events of Mass Effect 3 begin.
Katie Tachuck is a reporter for News Lair. After graduating from UCLA, Katie got an internship at a local radio station and worked as a investigative journalist and producer. Katie has also worked as a columnist for the The Santa Fe New Mexican. Katie covers economy and community events for News Lair.