With the announcement of Mass Effect 4 and the release of the Mass Effect Legendary Edition, Bioware's flagship franchise has never been more relevant or in the public eye since the conclusion of the original trilogy.
In a recent interview with Gamespot, Mac Walters (Mass Effect 2 lead writer) discussed the early stages of Mass Effect 2 and some of the character concepts that had to be cut from the project.
Some of the concepts were later reworked into the twelve squad-mates, Shepard lead on a suicide mission against the Collectors. While Walter's "Dirty Dozen" are well-loved, some of the initial concepts could have delved deeper into the themes of AI and their place within a galactic society.
Also, the concepts would have introduced more Salarian and Quarian teammates whilst also allowing players to learn more about Krogan society from the perspective of a War Queen.
While it is likely there are more character concepts than Mac Walters mentioned, it is still interesting to learn about the initial ideas that later became Mass Effect 2. From a Prothean Hologram to the first Batarian squadmate.
Unfortunately, Blasto the Hannar Spectre isn't on the list.
10. The Lost Hologram
Some of the most interesting cut characters stem from the AI relationship with organic beings. Envisioned as a damaged Prothean Hologram, possibly looking like a midway between Vigil and Vendetta, the hologram would have revealed a civil rights movement within the Prothean Empire.
As the Protheans were such an imperialistic society, the idea of a civil rights movement is not a farfetched concept, especially considering human history. However, as the hologram is described as a genuine Prothean, the civil rights movement could have originated within the ruling class (possibly a small group) rather than the oppressed.
Within the interview, it was mentioned that the Hologram's wish to be treated equally would have been a source of comic relief for the crew of the Normandy. The interview didn't say if the humour stemmed from the Hologram still campaigning against the Protheans long past their extinction, or if the idea of equal rights for an AI was funny.
If the latter, then that might have been really uncomfortable considering the history of the Geth, and would've been even worse if Legion was still a squad mate. However, it would have made for some interesting conversations within the Normandy.