Barruk was born circa 710 CE, just before the turians unleashed the genophage during the Krogan Rebellions. His father died at the Battle of Canrum, where Barruk brags it took two dozen guns to slay him.
Allegedly, Barruk woke up from cryostasis decades before the Nexus carrying him and thousands of others arrived at the Heleus Cluster in the Andromeda galaxy. He spent anywhere from 50 years to a century alone; he can't remember how long as he subsisted on nutrient paste in all that time.
The old krogan is glad his father didn't live to see his race riding in cargo like pets. Barruk resents how the krogan have been treated like dirt time and again regardless of the place, and doesn't regret spending his days on Elaaden rather than the relative comfort of the Nexus after the uprising incident and the way the krogan were used again. He firmly believes respect is earned by force, and they were stupid to hope things would be different in Andromeda.
Barruk earns a living by picking scraps out in the Sea of Ataraxia, where "squishies" like his human competitors can't handle the heat. He steers clear from the flophouse as he cannot defend his salvage from the masses of people there. He hates how he devolved from a warrior into someone who fights vermin over a junk heap.
Despite his mean disposition Barruk has some personal acquaintances he's apparently on good terms with: Jurdon Krex and Vorn. One of the terminals in the Outlaw headquarters on H-047c has a message from Barruk enticing Krex to return to New Tuchanka.
Mass Effect: Andromeda Edit
Pathfinder Ryder can often overhear Barruk belittling, berating or contradicting his partner, whom he actually deems a lackey rather than an equal. He doesn't want to bring his partner to Ataraxia while scavenging, claiming he'll only be a burden and the place isn't for rookies. He doesn't want the seller to talk to customers too much either as he wants them to think they can be rebuffed at any time, a notion his partner thinks is stupid. For the partner's part, he puts up with the old krogan's antics more than the last assistant did as he's aware Barruk endured considerable grief.
The first time Ryder talks to Barruk he asks if they're a scavenger. If Ryder doesn't deny the assumption, Barruk makes his opinion clear on scavengers by daring the Pathfinder to ask the last five he killed that morning. If Ryder declares their actual profession, Barruk thinks it's even worse than scavengers. He then directs the potential customer to his lackey as he doesn't want to talk, but Ryder can actually coax him to recount his life and convictions.
The first time Ryder talks to Barruk's seller, Barruk deems his assistant an ignorant child for welcoming aliens into New Tuchanka. The merchant tells him to shut up, then conducts business in a friendlier manner: credits are still credits. If Ryder praises the guy's demeanor, he encourages the Pathfinder to give Barruk time and reason to prove they're trustworthy. If Ryder agrees selling only to krogan is a bad move, the merchant points out Barruk is more concerned with proving a point than growing his clientele; fortunately, they don't have the same beliefs. In either case, he then orders the Pathfinder to buy something before Barruk yells again.