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Spoiler Warning S4E17: Hello My Name Is Grunt

By Shamus
on Tuesday Jan 4, 2011
Filed under:
Spoiler Warning


New Year’s* resolution: I promise to have a more positive outlook on games and not just bitch about them all the time.

Link (YouTube)

Blast it. Well, that resolution didn’t last long, did it?

Maybe next year. Happy new year anyway.

* So, what are we calling this decade? I know we called the previous decade the “aughts”, which was awkward and difficult to the point where people tried to avoid calling it anything at all. Eventually we’ll just call this decade the “teens”, but that feels like we’re getting ahead of ourselves because eleven is not a teen. We shouldn’t call it that until at least 2013. In the interim, I’ve suggested calling the decade “Herbert” but this idea isn’t catching on.

Comments (138)

  1. droid says:

    Warlord is probably the Krogan title that is closest to mad scientist, it would fit if all their titles of respect have something to do with killing or war of being angry.

  2. Alexander The 1st says:

    Yeah, their recruiting him for his knowledge of the Collectors. I guess Cerberus expected him to be Mordin v2. But with him gone, having the Collector technology inside Grunt is still useful – The Illusive Man mentions later that he understands [or doesn’t; it’s been a while] why you made the decision – he also says it’s your responsibility to take him down if he goes rogue. And in classic “enhancement of humanity” talk, he also notes that he wants the body if you kill Grunt – the technology could help The Illusive Man – I mean, Humanity.

    Speaking of which, I’m sure there’s some Mordin/Grunt fanfiction by now. You can’t un-think it; you know it to be true.

  3. asterismW says:

    “The tens” sounds good to me. But 2011 is not the start of a new decade; 2010 was.

    • Nick Bell says:

      This is one of those wonderful culture vs logic debates that nerds love to argue about. Logically, 2010 is the end of a decade spanning 2001-2010. Why? Because the first decade spanned from 1-10.

      Culturally, we tend to span our decades with similar numbers. 1990-1999 is a decade since they are all 199*, rather than dropping 1990 for the different 2000. We also like to end things on nice round numbers, so ending decades in years with a final zero appeals to us.

      Of course not that any of this has any sort of real practical application. This is mostly just arguing for the sake of argument.

      • Nick says:

        A couple of days ago I saw a TV station promo stating “Welcome to the new decade”, of course this was the same station that 11 years ago celebrated the new millennium on New Year’s Day 2000.

        Way to be consistent.

        Holy crap, has it been 10 years since the new millennium already!!

    • Matt K says:

      Perhaps we’re currently in the Pre-Teens and maybe by 2015 or 2016 we’ll fianlly be in the Teens?

    • Shamus says:

      Side rant: I see this every time we change the decade. I imagine it’s been going on since the Gregorian calendar was adopted. It is, as far as I can tell, griefing through pedantry.

      When we talk about “the eighties” or “the seventies” it’s pretty clear which years we’re talking about.

      EDIT: Edited for clarity.

      • Steve C says:

        Shamus said: rant: I see this every time we change the decade.

        Dude! You know you are old when you start ranting about decades.

      • asterismW says:

        I certainly wasn’t trying to be pendantic. I’ve actually never known anyone to argue that “the decades” span NNN1-NN(N+1)0, rather than NNN0-NNN9. Thus, I was confused as to why you’d bring up the name of this decade now. By your own comments you seem to agree with the NNN0-NNN9 model.

        • MichaelG says:

          In 2000, I thought it was appropriate to celebrate the millennium. After all, if you are going to yell when the digits of the calendar change, you might as well yell when all four change (1999-2000), not when just one changes (2000-2001.) And there was Y2K to worry about.

          I think we’ll look back at 2011 and call it one of the depression years, like 1930.

          • Daemian Lucifer says:

            Funny you mention that,but in my city there was this “millennium” clock that was built in the late 2000,a few days before the new year,and when the time came,it switched from 2000 to 1901,and stayed like that for about 20 minutes,before they managed to fix it.

            • MintSkittle says:

              There was a clock on our school website that changed from 1999 to 19100. That was amusing.

              • Ringwraith says:

                Showing clear signs of lazy programming there.
                Obviously it was easier to just have the first two digits fixed rather than have the date as a single variable.
                Computers didn’t break at least, which is what the media seemed to want to everyone to believe would happen, they just did very weird things.

            • Integer Man says:

              That’s awesome. Its sole purpose was to roll in the new millennium and they biffed the date conversion?

              • Daemian Lucifer says:

                Even funnier(or scarier,if you want)was the fact that no one from media even dared to mention that,nor did they even mention the clock that they were praising for days before the day came.So only those that were celebrating at the square new what a screw up it was.

          • Heron says:

            I think we'll look back at 2011 and call it one of the depression years, like 1930.

            The National Bureau of Economic Research wants us to believe the recession ended in June 2009…


            … but the rest of the country scoffs.

            Meanwhile, my Amazon stock keeps going up.

        • Shamus says:

          I’m sorry, I wasn’t trying to argue with you, I was just going off on a side-subject that had been needling me.

    • Hitch says:

      My personal feeling is that we’re in the second year of the “teens” despite the year not ending in “-teen” for two more years. Most of the decade is teens.

      Some people are slow on getting the memo about decade changes. It was bad enough when someone would slip and refer to last year as “oh ten” like “oh nine” and “oh eight” before that, but I saw someone say “oh eleven” for this year. Seriously?

  4. Sho says:

    I haven’t heard “aughts” before, and I can’t say I’m a fan. I’ve heard it called “the noughties” however (generally by Australian TV personalities), which seems to fit the theme so far (if a little ambiguous when spoken).

    Onesies, Tensies, whatever. It’ll probably be someone else’s job to name them in ten years time.

    • Henebry says:

      2000-2008: the Bush years or Bushies for short. Of course, this may not mean much to people living outside the US.

    • Psivamp says:

      I haven’t heard it called the aughts before, but it makes sense.

      • Jock says:

        We don’t HAVE to call it the aughts. That’s what 1900-1909 was called, because that’s how people pronounced the zero back then (If you know anything about guns, the 30-06 cartridge is pronounced ‘thirty aught six’ because is was introduced in 1906). Nowadays I think the preferred pronounciation is ‘oh’, like, ‘Way back in Oh Eight, when Obama was elected…,’ though I could see that being different by country.

        That being said, I think calling it the ‘Ohs’ sounds silly. Maybe ‘The turn of the millenium’? ‘The 2Ks?’

  5. Sean Hagen says:

    This decade is “The Onsies”.

  6. Atarlost says:

    The problem is that last time around everyone was too busy dieing in the great war to name the decade.

    Actually, I don’t think anyone bothered naming decades until they wanted to recapture turn of the century optimism after that big mess with the Serbian assassin.

    I’m going to nominate Decade 21.2 for this second decade of the twenty-first century.

  7. The_Unforgiven says:

    I totally second the motion to call this decade ‘Herbert’. :D

  8. Daemian Lucifer says:

    If only there was a krogan warlord shepard knew from before,even saved his life a few times,wouldnt that be great?

    And really,there is someone who looked at your average regular krogan and thought “He just inst enough of a soldier,I need to make a better one”.

    Funny thing about grunt being genetically “manufactured” like miranda,he act much more like it,and is overall a more interesting character.

    • jdaubenb says:

      Wrex ain’t canon, son.
      Not saying he shouldn’t be, but a certain somebody shot him. At least he’s canon in Spoiler-Warning-continuity.

      Further breaking news: A Teenage Mutant Soldier Turtle [sic] is more interesting and engaging than Miranda’s huge tracts of land (because there certainly is nothing else memorable about her character).

    • Cyanide says:

      I thought the comment about Miranda and Grunt being supposed “perfection” was interesting in that you could probably apply it to almost all the companions. Thane’s been trained since youth as the ultimate assassin, Jack is described as the most powerful human biotic, Samara has hundreds of years of discipline, Legion is some kind of super-geth, Tali is said to be gifted at engineering even for a Quarian, and Garrus is Batman.

      Poor Jacob. He never had a chance.

      (This is in contrast to your companions in Dragon Age: A nearly novice Grey Warden, an apostate, a poet, a disgraced Qunari, an abomination, a failed assassin, a drunk, and a faulty golem. Yet oddly, I probably like all of them more than most of the ME2 characters.)

  9. X2-Eliah says:

    I, for one, am not looking forward to that particular Rutskarn’s fanfiction.

    Also, Mumbles sounds a bit grumpy in this vid… Still hangovers from New year’s, I guess.

    As for Grunt – great character, good modelling, very decent voice acting. I am surprised why Grunt’s bottom isn’t the one taking up all the camera spotlight, as opposed to Miranda’s.

  10. GM says:

    if you would name Grunt something what would that be i,m thinking Hercules.

    • Hitch says:

      I’d go with “Shirley.” Kind of a “Boy Named Sue” kind of thing. He won’t understand it, but he’ll stay pissed off when people laugh at him. And I can keep hoping for someone to say, “Surely you’re not working with Sheppard?” So he can answer, “Yes I am, and how did you know my name?”

  11. sebcw1204 says:

    in regards to the video comment about the Predators collecting skulls for advancement; yes. or at least prestige. thats what samurai did.

  12. KnightLight says:

    Do you hate the hacking minigame so much that you’re willing to sabotage yourself?

    The research terminal that you saw but decided to skip had a pretty hefty health upgrade for Grunt.

  13. Hey Josh, you should take advantage of the exploding canisters/containers/tanks littered around.
    When you move the mouse/sight around yellow boxes will appear, shot at those and things should go boom and do some nice damage.

    • Integer Man says:

      There was one particular bit where there’s a giant explosive rectangle and he went instead for fine tuning his aim on the much smaller (and less yellow) target of the actual person.

      Remember: Dust off and nuke the site from orbit; it’s the only way to be sure. *

      * – NOTE: Dusting off is optional. Nuking the site from the site is a perfectly valid way to go.

  14. Irridium says:

    Know what would have been awesome? If Mordin and Grunt had their own loyalty-clack like Legion/Tali and Miranda/Jack.

    I mean really, it’d make sense that Mordin, who had a hand in making sure the Genophage works properly, and Grunt, a Krogan bred to be “immune” to it would probably have some sort of confrontation.

    If only…

  15. Ernheim says:

    On Mumbles’ point about Miranda and Grunt both being engineered to be perfect, Jack probably falls into that as well. After all, Cerberus were trying to make her the perfect biotic. What interests me, though, is how they have three characters with similar stories, but they manage to tell that same concept in such different ways.

    Miranda was raised by a tyrannical father who cared only about having her as a sort of trophy.
    Jack was tortured into existence by a morally bankrupt terrorist organisation wanting the ultimate beserker.
    Grunt was grown by a mad scientist/genius who wanted to bring back the proud warriors of his dying race.

    Miranda is driven by her experience to try and help others (her sister/clone) to escape it.
    Jack was driven mad by it and just wants to forget and/or destroy everything.
    Grunt, judging by his loyalty mission, is mentally just a normal, presuambly intelligent, krogan adolescent, despite being physically perfect.

    Same concept told in three different, interesting ways, so that at a first glance you don’t notice the similarities. I’m impressed, Bioware.

    • Aldowyn says:

      The difference is Jack wasn’t genetically engineered like the other two.

      Grunt isn’t quite normal, either. He, especially at first, lacks the experiences and motivations of a “normal” Krogan… causes some issues.

  16. guy says:

    Grunt’s scene irritated me in a different way. You see, I picked the Renegade option in the prior conversation, meaning the plan was to vent the hold to space. It made me very angry that Shepard neglected to wear a spacesuit

    • Sekundaari says:

      Lousy thing never worked for her anyway…

      • Josh says:

        Don’t worry, if Shepard gets vented into space with Grunt they can just put her back together again. I just hope they’re not passing by some ice planet in low orbit again when they vent it though.

    • Irridium says:

      But wearing a spacesuit isn’t cool.

      See: Every single person on your team(except Garrus/Tali). All they do is wear breath-masks. And so long as you have a breath mask, your safe from [i]everything[/i] in space. And on inhospitable planets.

      • Avilan says:

        Shepard, Mordin and Grunt also have full helmets.

        • Irridium says:

          I just saw Mording with a neckbrace-looking thing whenever I took him to space/toxic planets.

          Grunt I’m willing to look away since Krogan can survive in plenty of awful conditions, so I’ll let that pass.

          As for Shepard, well I was referring to the team, not Shepard.

          • Fnord says:

            Grunt wears a full helmet. He still leaves his arms exposed, but, you know, Krogan. Garrus and Tali (obviously) wear full suits, as does Shepard, and Legion should be fine.

            Mordin’s and Zaeed’s at least cover their eyes as well as their nose and mouth, but they’re still leaving skin exposed. And everyone else is just stupid.

  17. Integer Man says:

    Mumbles had a nice insightful literary structure comment on the lack of the salute. I watch you guys for the amusement and the way that you find the various plot flaws with these games and just generally have fun.

    Nice to see the random small subtle good things pointed out in a game that spectacularly got the big picture wrong.

  18. Kale says:

    Just wondering, since Shamus brought up the “show Miranda’s butt for no good reason” drinking add-on, what would BE a good reason to show it? Aside from bizarre medical condition or wound I can’t come up with a story relevant reason to show someone’s rear.

  19. Snicks says:

    Just a little thing I picked up on regarding Miranda’s accent.

    A lot of Americans seem to have trouble differentiating between Australian and English accents. To a Brit she sounds Australian, I’m assuming to an Australian she would sound English.

    She’s probably going for Australian seeing as how that’s Yvonne Strahovski’s (awesome name) natural accent.

  20. Sucal says:

    She doesn’t sound british to me, but then I’m not really familiar with any non cliche British accents (strangely enough there aren’t that many here in the land of Oz.)

    Also, if you ever write that fanfiction, you have to post it here, so we can all do Spoiler Warning style commentary on it.

  21. TSED says:

    Guys, guys, guys. Predators take skulls because they’re all playing World of Predquest. And the only thing the collect quests want are skulls.

    This is why it doesn’t have very many subscribers.

  22. Simon says:

    Hey there Shamus,

    I’ve been reading your blog for a while now, and have recently started watching Spoiler Warning as well; even going back and watching through previous seasons. Fallout was a very….long season.

    Just thought I’d stop and say that I really enjoy your writing and these productions, keep up the good work!

  23. Aldowyn says:


    *Grunt’s eyes suddenly snap open, his hand smashes through the glass and crushes Shepard’s skull*


  24. Neil Polenske says:

    Wow, that was the best worst episode ever!

    Side Note: Mumbles, I hate you forever now!

  25. Alex says:

    I like Cracked.com’s suggestion of “The Dorkade”. I guess this decade will be the “Tens”? “Teens?”

  26. antman says:

    I always thought it was “naughts” as in naught, 0.

  27. Shinan says:

    When playing the game I never actually released Grunt. I was trying to roleplay and releasing some unknown engineered superkrogan seemed like a really, really, stupid idea.

    I really hope that choice pays off in Mass Effect 3 somehow.

    • Lalaland says:

      I wish that was the case but I imagine that it won’t. When saving an entire race from extinction only earned a passing comment (and in the ‘official’ new game you killed them) freeing one character will probably just be hand waved.

      • Ringwraith says:

        It’s the last one in the trilogy, so there’s nothing stopping them from going crazy with all the storyline alternatives as preserving future continuity isn’t a problem anymore.

  28. Corsair says:

    Please don’t call this decade ‘The Noughties’. Then in 30 years, everyone will think it was the Porn Decade.

  29. Johan says:

    Wow, I called the last decade the “two-thousands,” but I think I’ll call this one the “Herbert” just because that made me laugh so.

  30. Gnrlshrimp says:

    …you folks called the last decade the aughts?

    Wish that’s what it’d been called everywhere. I’ve had to live with people calling it the “noughties”, which was a sickeningly poor name. sickening!

  31. tjtheman5 says:

    I wanted to see a sign on Grunt’s tank that says “Do not tap on glass.”

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