Robin Sachs

Robin Sachs, the popular character actor who voiced gruff, scarred mercenary Zaeed Massani in Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3, has died at the age of 61.

BBC America reports that London-born Sachs was found in his Los Angeles home on Tuesday, his birthday, having passed away four days earlier. Friends described his death as “unexpected,” but sources indicate natural causes. No official cause of death has been announced.

Mass Effect 2: Zaeed

While Sachs also had voice roles in Resident Evil: Damnation, Rainbow Six: Lockdown, Maiijn and the Forsaken Kingdom, and The Bard’s Tale, his gravelly portrayal of Zaeed gained him the most fans. A downloadable character made available to first-time buyers through Electronic Arts’ online pass system, Zaeed co-founded the ruthless Blue Suns mercenary group before his partners betrayed him. He got his chance for revenge years later while working for Commander Shepard as part of his loyalty mission in Mass Effect 2. Zaeed’s bitter and acerbic style appealed to the Mass Effect fan base, leading to a brief appearance in a Mass Effect 3 side mission.

Sachs first became well known to sci-fi/fantasy fans on TV’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer as Ethan Rayne, the villainous counterpart to Buffy’s mentor, Rupert Giles (Anthony Head). His first on-camera role was in one of the classic Hammer horror films, Vampire Circus. Under heavy prosthetics, he also menaced fake space hero Tim Allen as the very real alien menace Sarris in Galaxy Quest. More recently, he took on guest roles in Castle, Torchwood, and NCIS.