Husks are cybernetic zombies seen in the game franchise of Mass Effect. Though other races, in theory, can be transformed into husks, only human-husks have been seen in-game.
A Batarian Husk or Scion, a husk variant, has also been seen in released screens from BioWare's interview with GameInformer.
Husk creation is only known to happen in one method thus far. During the invasion of Eden Prime, Geth were seen throwing humans, dead and alive, onto machines called Dragons' Teeth by the Alliance Military. The machine will likely kill the victim during the process of which shortly after being thrown onto the machine, a large 10ft high spike will impale the victim in the start of a gruesome transformation.
The victim's body will be drained of nutrients and minerals as well as moisture and be flooded with material of unexplained origin and design, causing the victim to have moisture replaced with cybernetics that will grow throughout the body and rupture at varying points on the body as pipes connecting the cybernetics connect and rewire the victim into a husk. All that is known of the devices is that they are used by the reapers - it may be possible that the nutrition retained from the base of these terrifying machines is used by the reapers in production of new reapers. The theme of raw material from living sources is a recurring theme in reaper "civilisation".
The main purpose of husks is to be shock troops, the resistance to the precise damage of a bullet is not enough to keep back a charging crowd. A recommendation against crowds of them would be sheer overkill levels of damage from weapons such as grenades or rocket launchers. Electrical charge weapons are also useful in dispersing groups of husks. Heavy bullet damage or modified ammo is much more useful against Husks.
Biotic attacks are also good against Husks if they are not shielded or armoured.
If they get too close they may discharge an EMP attack (Mass Effect 1) or attempt to maim and beat their target to death. (Mass Effect 2 features husks which only beat down their targets).
Husks were encountered on the destroyed Reaper in Mass Effect 2, it is likely they were staff sent there to investigate and turned to husks through dragon's teeth. Logs of the staff encountering the effects of indoctrination and confusion before transformation are present. Collective memory was discovered by 2 staff members who remembered exactly the same memory, a sign that husks may be hive minded.
Husks also come in 3 direct variations but the variations are only seen in Mass Effect 2.
- Abominations - Suicide Unit, they are a glowing red and often burst into flames before detonating. In a crowd they can be hard to focus fire against due to the mass of husks to shoot through.
- Scions - These are husks with a cannon of similar cybernetic material grafted to their arm's skeletal socket at the shoulder. They shoot a blue fluid that causes damage on contact, it is thought that biotics are involved in their creation. They are also husks that are potentially made from more than one victim.
- Praetorians - A large flying unit shaped like a beetle with a large open maw at the front which contains many husk heads. It fires a beam that causes significant damage the longer the exposure to the beam is. They also regenerate shields instantly in a large ground thump attack that causes a lethal shockwave from the shield regeneration.