Mass Effect 3 was an emotional game for a lot of reasons. The stakes were high as Commander Shepard and her allies tried to keep the Reapers from killing everyone, and some did not receive a happy ending. Fans had to say goodbye to a series they loved as well as characters they had come to care about. It’s hard to really express all the feelings all of this evokes, yet one of the best fan creations capturing it all is a tribute song that will have you tearing up in no time called “Reignite.”
“Reignite” was composed and sung by Malukah. Malukah, a composer and singer from Mexico, creates stunning covers of songs from video games, TV shows, and movies. Since starting her blog and YouTube channel, she’s even worked on a few video games, like Elder Scrolls Online. Malukah also creates original fan works inspired by her favorite franchises, and that’s where “Reignite” comes in.
“Regardless of the ending controversy, I really wanted to make a tribute to Shepard and all of Mass Effect's characters that have kept me company while playing the games,” Malukah wrote in the video description.
Released a little more than a month after Mass Effect 3 came out in 2012, the song is a beautiful mix of original and recognizable Mass Effect music. It’s not just the instrumentals that reach you, though. The lyrics written by Malukah are also heart-wrenching as you feel how they relate to Shepard. You can sense the struggle you played through when you hear “hope can drown lost in thunderous sound.” It references people who have been lost in “I carry strength from souls now gone, they won't let me give in” and those still by your side with “united we can break a fate once set in stone.”
Beyond a sense of melancholy, though, there’s also hope. How Shepard won’t give up is clear in the repeated “I will never surrender,” and it’s hard not to smile at the inspiring “just hold the line until the end,” thanks to its reference to a familiar game line.
As a fan of video game music, “Reignite” has earned a high spot in my gaming playlist. Whenever I want to remember the game and everything the series went through, there’s nothing quite like listening to this amazing work.