Drugs are chemical substances which alter the normal bodily functions of an organism. Drugs are used by people throughout the galaxy. The market for them is significant enough that various criminal enterprises produce, sell, or smuggle them for considerable profit, despite legal restrictions. Drugs can have various effects on a user when consumed, such as altering a user's biotic potential.
Creeper is a powerful new hallucinogenic drug. Creeper forms as a dust-like mold on some strains of the high-nutrition vine ossilbir which have been grown on the human colony world of Sathur. Consumption of small quantities of this mold causes the user to experience "potent visions" or "colorful daydreams", allegedly with no ill side-effects. Since creeper was not discovered until after Sathur started growing ossilbir in late 2185, medical experts have not had a chance to study the long-term effects of using the drug.
Eximo is a non-addictive narcotic used to treat stress in humans. It is often prescribed to executives and government officials who tend to overwork. Elias Keeler can be given Eximo, a depressant, instead of the Videlicet stimulant he requests.
Hallex is a controlled substance which induces heightened senses and extreme euphoria in those who dose themselves with it. Not much has been mentioned about this substance, other than it is used by the asari Ardat-Yakshi, Morinth, who both consumed it herself and offered it to her victims. The Hallex would facilitate her 'hunt' by making her victims less aware of what was going on and raising their desire to mate with her. The Omega citizen, Nef, fell victim to this tactic.
Hallex is taken in pill form. A bottle of Hallex was shown on a table in Morinth's apartment during Samara's loyalty mission. Investigating it causes Morinth to offer Shepard a Hallex, though she says she'd prefer to stay clear-headed and suggests that Shepard should as well.
Minagen X3 Edit
Minagen X3 is an illegal chemical that enhances biotics. The degree of enhancement is in proportion to the amount of exposure to the substance. However, Minagen X3 is lethal to the user in large quantities. Minagen X3 is red in color.
On Illium, the volus merchant Pitne For smuggled large quantities of Minagen X3 for the local band of Eclipse mercenaries. The mercenaries were unaware of the possibility of death with its usage and murdered Pitne For's business partner, Dakni Kur, in retaliation. Many volatile canisters of Minagen X3 can be found in the Eclipse base on Illium. The canisters can be destroyed, releasing Minagen X3 into the air, which will cause enhancement of biotic abilities of people in the immediate vicinity. However, prolonged exposure will damage kinetic barriers and ultimately, a person's health.
Also during the mission, Shepard comes across a volus, Niftu Cal, who claims to be a "biotic god". However the volus' tipsy nature suggest that his biotic powers are a result of a biotic drug, either red sand or Minagen X3.
Omega-Enkaphalin is a biotic-suppressing drug secretly developed by Cerberus' Project Trapdoor in 2169 CE. According to the Shadow Broker's dossier on Cerberus activities, omega-enkaphalin (abbreviated O-E) can be administered in small dosages to gradually reduce a biotic's powers for a limited time, although permanent damage is possible. Cerberus experimented on asari captives with O-E.
In 2170 CE, Cerberus proceeded to instill its operatives with resistance to O-E using nanosurgery; the process was successfully tested on Subject Zero.
A decade later in 2181 CE, Cerberus used O-E on an influential asari matriarch touting the superiority of biotic individuals over non-biotic individuals. When the matriarch's biotic powers weakened, her claims were brushed off and she lost political clout.
Red sand Editbiotic-enhancing properties. Its abuse is disproportionately high among non-biotic friends and relatives of biotics, often out of a misguided desire to understand what their loved ones are experiencing. Red sand was originally created by criminal triads on Mars from refined element zero, and may take its name from the planet. As eezo is also used to create medicines, red sand's creation may have been a "fortunate" lab mistake.
When taken nasally, red sand creates a brief but intense euphoria, and gives the user very short-term telekinetic biotic abilities. Side effects include red-tinting of the user's vision, discolouration of the teeth and longer-term withdrawal symptoms. Red sand is normally sold in small bags. The slang expression for using it is "dusting up" or being "sand-blasted". Asari and batarians are immune to red sand, whilst humans are the only race confirmed to be susceptible to its effects.
The batarians are known to buy addicts as slaves, when the addicts can no longer afford to support their habit. Helena Blake's "business partners" were also involved in red sand dealing, but she puts a stop to it if Commander Shepard assists. The self-styled Lord Darius also demands the Alliance provide him with equipment to produce red sand during his negotiations.
During Samara's recruitment mission, Shepard encounters a volus, Niftu Cal, who claims to be a "biotic god". However the volus' tipsy nature suggest that his biotic powers were a result of a biotic drug, either red sand or Minagen X3.
Paul Grayson was a known red sand addict during the events of Mass Effect: Ascension. In the years before Mass Effect: Retribution, Grayson quit using red sand for the sake of his daughter. During Retribution, however, Grayson was captured by Cerberus to become a subject in experiments with Reaper technology. He was forcibly injected with a liquefied, concentrated form of red sand, and implanted with a device to regulate his red sand dosage. The goal of this was to sap Grayson's willpower and allow the Reapers to more easily control his body.
A placebo pill supposedly for headaches. Samantha Traynor reveals she has been prescribed sucrocapsunol by her family doctor if she's in a platonic relationship with Shepard and allowed to use the hot tub in the Commander's personal apartment.
Videlicet is a complex synthetic chemical that improves short-term memory and mental focus in humans. Elias Keeler is a user of this stimulant.
- A cut plot from Therum (from when it was still called "Caleston") involved a pair of salarian brothers who skimmed element zero mined on the world to manufacture red sand.
- Red sand appears to be a nod to the spice Melange in Frank Herbert's book, Dune.
- It may also be a reference to the 90s TV show Babylon 5. In Season 3, it is revealed that the Psi Corps created a drug called 'Dust', which enhanced psychic abilities, or even allowed a non-telepath to temporarily gain psychic ability.