Mass Effect 2

Strategy Guide/Walkthrough/FAQ

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Completion bonuses

Successfully complete the game. Then, start a new game with the cleared saved game file to start with the following bonuses: choose Loyalty Bonus Skill at the start; retain Skill Points from first playthrough; retain level and experience points from first playthrough; +25% experience bonus for all characters; 200,000 credits, 50,000 of each resource; Renegade and Paragon points reset to neutral; and your weapons and armor (but no upgrades) from first playthrough.

Loyalty mission bonuses

Successfully complete the indicated party member's Loyalty mission or task to unlock the corresponding skill for Shepard, alternate colors for their costumes, and increase the chance for surviving the suicide mission. Note: Successfully complete the Advanced Training research upgrade for your ship to be able to select the skills.

    Armor Piercing Ammo: Archangel's Loyalty mission
    Biotic Barrier: Jacob's Loyalty mission
    Dominate: Kill Samara during her Loyalty mission, and have Morinth replace her.
    Flashbang Grenade: Kasumi's Loyalty mission
    Fortification: Grunt's Loyalty mission.
    Geth Shield Boost: Legion's Loyalty mission
    Inferno Grenade: Zaeed's Loyalty mission
    Neural Shock: Mordin Solus's Loyalty mission
    Reave: Samara's Loyalty mission
    Shield Drain: Tali's Loyalty mission
    Shredder Ammo: Thane's Loyalty mission
    Slam: Miranda's Loyalty mission
    Stasis: Successfully complete "The Lair Of The Shadow Broker" DLC.
    Warp Ammo: Jack's Loyalty mission

Extra Paragon and Renegade points

During conversations, look carefully for a prompt at the top left area of the screen. Quickly press L2 when the wings appear for extra Paragon points. Quickly press R2 when the star appears for extra Renegade points.

Easy Paragon and Renegade points

Throughout the game you will unlock training to redistribute your skill points. Talent Mastery adds a certain percentage to your Paragon/Renegade. Respec and distribute them into your Mastery repeatedly until your Paragon and Renegade are full.

Easy materials

To find some easy mining planets, go to the Micah system in the Vallhallan Threshold, and look for the three planets hidden in the asteroids. They are all "Rich" planets with a lot of materials on them to help with your upgrades. -From: Psychotic Elf

Easy skill points

Recruit Morinth to get the Dominate skill, and get a large amount of Element Zero. Buy the Advanced Training upgrade, and select Dominate. This will result in a bonus skill point, which is then used by the Retrain Powers upgrade. Repeat this process to get another skill point.

Quicker scanning for mining

While scanning a planet, do not hold L2. Instead, rapidly tap L2 until you see a blip on the scanner. Then, go back over the area while holding L2 to find the best location to send the probe.

Move the pointer to the left or right of the planet you want to scan. Press the Left Analog-stick and Right Analog-stick in the same direction to double the spin speed of the planet and allow you to locate resources on the grid line quickly.

Planet scanning

After scanning a planet and pressing Triangle, the planet information screen on the right reveals if the planet is "Rich", "Moderate", or "Poor". Rich planets give approximately 10+ good scan for ores. Ore yields vary from 1,500 to 3,000. Moderate planets give approximately 8+ good scans, but around 35% to 55% yield compared to rich planets. Poor planets give approximately 5+ scans with yields 5% to 25% compared to rich planets. Note: If there is an anomaly on the planet (typically a rich planet) and you land before you scan, usually the Star Map on the Normandy will put you in a strange location away from the anomaly planet. You must then go back and rescan to get your ores.

Easy Geth Pulse Rifle

Change the difficulty to Hardcore before you land on the planet. Successfully complete Tali'Zora's recruitment mission to find the Geth Pulse Rifle in the room where you find Tali. You can then change the difficulty back to its original setting.

Cryo Bomb

This trick requires any Biotic that lifts your enemy off the ground and the Cryo Bomb tech. Use the Biotic to lift the enemy off the ground, then hit him or her with the Cryo Bomb while they are still under the Biotic's effect. This will cause him or her to be stuck in a permanent falling state, where they are not capable of causing any damage. This is very helpful when trying to prevent the deployment of Harbinger, as once he enters the glitched body he cannot move. Thus, you can kill him at the end of a fight to prevent him from jumping into another body.

Rapid fire M-920 Cain

Shoot the M-920 Cain, and keep [Fire] held while pressing [Reload] after each shot. The shots will keep firing during the previous shots' explosions.

Getting Dominate ability and keeping Samara alive

Dominate is a very useful Biotic ability that allows you to control organic enemies and turn them into allies, similar to the Hack ability that controls synthetics. In order to get this ability as a Loyalty mission bonus to use for your character, you must help Morinth kill Samara during Samara's Loyalty mission. However, it is possible to keep Samara on your team but still get Morinth's Dominate ability by using the following trick. Play Samara's Loyalty mission up to the point where Samara confronts Morinth. Save the game immediately before the confrontation. When you must choose who to eliminate, choose the option that allows Morinth get the upper-hand on Samara and kill her. Create a separate saved game file. Go to the ship, and talk to Morinth. Load the previous saved game, then have Samara kill Morinth. You will now get to keep Samara as a squad mate and have Morinth's Dominate ability when you choose a bonus Loyalty power to add to your character in the prototype upgrade screen.

Romancing Yeoman Kelly Chambers

Talk with Yeoman Kelly Chambers often, and choose the kind responses. Invite her to dinner when you get the option. Do not let Kelly die during the final mission, and select a loyal escort for the crew in the final scene. After completing the game, talk to Kelly. You will get an e-mail from her. Go to your quarters, and invite her up using your console to get the romance scene.

Ending with both Jack's and Miranda's loyalties

Do not play Miranda's loyalty mission at first. Instead, wait for Jack's mission to become available, and play it first. After the mission when they are fighting, support Jack. Miranda's loyalty will be low. Then, play her loyalty mission to get it back.

Anomaly locations

Scan the indicated planets to find anomalies (side quests):

NebulaClusterPlanet
Caleston RiftSolveigSinmara
Caleston RiftTalavaTaitus
Crescent NebulaLusarnTarith
Crescent NebulaZeleneHelyme
Eagle NebulaAmunNeith
Eagle NebulaStraboJarrahe Station
Hades NexusSheolGei Hin
HourGlass NebulaFaryarDaratar
HourGlass NebulaPloitariZanethu
Minos WastelandFortisAequitas
Omega NebulaAriniarkanMSV Strontium Mule
Omega NebulaFatharLorek
Pylos NebulaDiradaCanalus
Pylos NebulaNariphMSV Broken Arrow
Rosetta NebulaEnochJoab
The Shrike NebulaXe ChaZada Ban
Sigurd's CradleDecorisSanctum
Sigurd's CradleSkepsisFranklin
Titan NebulaHaskinsCapek

Element Zero locations

Search the indicated planets to find Element Zero:

NebulaClusterPlanet and amount
Calestone RiftBalorCaleston (moderate)
Crescent NebulaLusamTarith (rich)
Crescent NebulaZeleneHelyme (moderate)
Eagle NebulaAmunAnthur (rich)
Eagle NebulaAmunSekhmet (moderate)
Eagle NebulaRelicPreying Mouth (rich)
Far RimDholenGotha (moderate)
Hades NexusHekateAsteria (poor)
Hades NexusHekateBothros (poor)
Hades NexusPamyatDobrovolski (moderate)
Hades NexusSheolGel Hinnom (moderate)
Hawking EtaSchwarzschildEtamis (rich)
Hourglass NebulaFaryarDaratar (rich)
Hourglass NebulaOsunErinle (rich)
Hourglass NebulaPloitariThegan (moderate)
Krogan DMZNithMantun (moderate)
Minos WastelandCaestusInvictus (moderate)
Nubian ExpanseKalabashaYamm (moderate)
Nubian ExpanseBatallaNearog (moderate)
Nubian ExpanseBatallaThunawanuro (rich)
Pylos NebulaDiradaSiano (moderate)
Pylos NebulaSatentBoro (rich)
Pylos NebulaRaisaris (rich)
Rosetta NebulaAlpha Draconis2175 Aeia (moderate)
Rosetta NebulaEnochJoab (rich)
Rosetta NebulaEnochLaban (moderate)
Rosetta NebulaEnochMizraim (rich)
Shadow SeaIeraProspect (poor)
Sigurd's CradleDecorisSanctum (moderate)
Sigurd's CradleSkepsisWatson (rich)
The Phoenix MassingSalahielEkuna (moderate)
The Shrike AbyssalUrla RastTalis Fia (moderate)
The Shrike AbyssalXe ChaTosal Nym (rich)
The Shrike AbyssalXe ChaZada Ban (rich)
Titan NebulaHaskinsCapek (moderate)
Valhallan ThresholdMicahFarlas (moderate)
Valhallan ThresholdMicahIsrafel (moderate)
Valhallan ThresholdMicahKakabel (moderate)
Valhallan ThresholdPazGarvug (rich)

Armor pieces

The following armor pieces will become available for purchase after certain points in the game:

Helmets

    N7 Helmet: +5% health
    N7 Breather Helmet: +5% health
    Kuwashii Visor: +10% headshot damage; at Omega
    Death Mask: +10% negotiation bonus; at Tuchanka
    Umbra Visor: +5% power damage; requires linking Dr. Pepper bonus code to EA account
    Recon Hood: +5% weapon damage; requires linking Dr. Pepper bonus code to EA account
    Sentry Interface: +5% shield strength; requires linking Dr. Pepper bonus code to EA account

Shoulders

    N7 Shoulder Guards: +3% weapon damage
    Amplifier Plates : +5% power damage; at Illium
    Strength Boost Pads: +25% melee damage; at Omega
    Asymmetric Defense Layer: +5% health; at Tuchanka

Chest

    N7 Chestplate: +5% power damage
    Capacitor Chestplate : -10% shields regeneration delay; at Citadel, Illium, or Omega
    Aegis Vest: +5% health; at Citadel
    Shield Harness : +5% shields; at Tuchanka

Arms

    N7 Gauntlets: +3% health
    Heavy Damping Gauntlets: +5% shields ; at Tuchanka
    Off-Hand Ammo Pack: +10% spare ammo capacity; at Citadel
    Stabilization Gauntlets: +5% weapon damage; at Omega

Legs

    N7 Greaves: +3% shield strength
    Stimulator Conduits: +10% storm speed; at Omega
    Life Support Webbing: +10% health; at Citadel
    Ordinance Packs: +10% spare heavy weapon ammo; at Omega

Armor Sets

    Blood Dragon Armor : +15% power damage, +10% shield strength; requires Dragon Age: Origins
    Terminus Assault Armor: +10% storm speed, +15% shields, +1 weapons reserve ammo; requires pre-order bonus code
    Inferno Armor: +10% negotiation bonus, +10% power damage, +10% storm speed by 10%; requires pre-order bonus code
    Collector Armor: +10% regeneration, +10% storm speed, +20% health; requires Collector's Edition

See Legion dance

Go up to Legion in his quarters. Highlight him, but do not talk to him, and eventually he will do the "Robot" dance.

Bizarre dialog with Legion

    1. Take Legion to the Citadel. Talk to Anderson and the customs officer.
    2. Take Legion to the migrate fleet on Tali's Loyalty mission. Security will force you to remove him unless you can persuade them otherwise.
    3. Take Legoin to recruit Tali. She will try to shoot him.

Amusing surveying responses

Go to the Local Cluster, and survey Uranus. Instead of the usual "Probe Launched" response, the voice will instead make Uranus jokes such as "Probing Uranus" or "Really Commander?"

Humorous dialogue

Wander around the ship in-between missions to hear some funny quotes. Stand next to Jeff "Joker" Moreau (the pilot) without interacting with him. You will hear him say things such as the following:

    "Why is it always claws and guns? Can't we piss off a fuzzy planet? Still dangerous, I know. But hey, bunnies."
    "Two years and everything hits the crapper. That'll teach you to die on me."
    "You know what I hate about deep space? Crap radio stations from two centuries back. My gosh, we were idiots."

Stand near the two engineers near the Mass Effect Core to hear the following:

    Engineer Daniels: "Did you know we're sharing our deck with a krogan?"
    Engineer Donnelly: "Well that's just peachy."

Baldur's Gate series reference

Space Hamster is available on Illium. Once you go into your cabin and select him, he will come out and do the same "Squeek" that Boo did, who was Minsc's "Intergalactic Space Hamster" from Baldur's Gate and Baldur's Gate 2.

Easy "No One Left Behind" trophy

If you completed the game but someone died after landing on the Collector Ship, choose someone else. During the last part where you select someone for the final time, do not choose someone without loyalty (e.g. you lose it after you have completed their loyalty mission), as they will not survive. Instead, leave them with loyal company. For example, if you lose Tali's loyalty and take her through the last part of the mission and she dies, reload the game, and leave her with everyone else. You can then get the "No One Left Behind" trophy.

Trophies

Successfully complete one of the following tasks to get a trophy:

    Highly Trained (Bronze): View all advanced combat training videos at Shepard's private terminal.
    Missing in Action (Bronze): Save your crew from an overwhelming attack.
    Very Elusive (Bronze): Return to active duty.
    The Convict (Bronze): Successfully recruit the biotic Convict.
    The Krogan (Bronze): Successfully recruit the Krogan.
    The Archangel (Bronze): Successfully recruit Archangel.
    The Professor (Bronze): Successfully recruit the Professor.
    The Quarian (Bronze): Successfully recruit the Quarian.
    The Justicar (Bronze): Successfully recruit the Justicar.
    The Assassin (Bronze): Successfully recruit the Assassin.
    Colony Defense (Bronze): Defend a human colony from attack.
    The Prodigal (Bronze): Gain the loyalty of the Cerberus Officer.
    Ghost of the Father (Bronze): Gain the loyalty of the Cerberus Operative.
    Catharsis (Bronze): Gain the loyalty of the biotic Convict.
    Battlemaster (Bronze): Gain the loyalty of the krogan.
    Fade Away (Bronze): Gain the loyalty of Archangel.
    The Cure (Bronze): Gain the loyalty of the Professor.
    Treason (Bronze): Gain the loyalty of the quarian.
    Doppelganger (Bronze): Help the Justicar resolve her mission.
    Cat's in the Cradle (Bronze): Gain the loyalty of the Assassin.
    Friend or Foe (Bronze): Obtain geth technology.
    A House Divided (Bronze): Hack a geth collective.
    Ghost Ship (Bronze): Complete the investigation of a derelict alien vessel.
    Suicide Mission (Bronze): Use the Omega 4 Relay.
    Head Hunter (Bronze): Perform 30 headshot kills with any weapon on humanoid targets.
    Brawler (Bronze): Shoot and kill 20 enemies while they're knocked back by a punch.
    Big Game Hunter (Bronze): Thresher Maw defeated.
    Tactician (Bronze): Hit 20 different targets with multiple biotic powers to combine the effects.
    Master at Arms (Bronze): Kill enemies with 5 different heavy weapons during the game.
    Merciless (Bronze): Make 20 enemies scream as they fall or are set on fire.
    Overload Specialist (Bronze): Disrupt the shields of 25 enemies.
    Warp Specialist (Bronze): Warp the barriers of 25 enemies.
    Incineration Specialist (Bronze): Incinerate the armor of 25 enemies.
    Operative (Bronze): Complete a mission discovered by scanning an unexplored world.
    Agent (Bronze): Complete 5 missions discovered by scanning unexplored worlds.
    Prospector (Bronze): Retrieve mineral resources by scanning and probing a planet in the galaxy map.
    Explorer (Bronze): Visit 100% of the planets in an unexplored cluster.
    Scholar (Bronze): Unlock 15 new Mass Effect 2 codex entries.
    Technician (Bronze): Obtain 10 technology upgrades.
    Weapon Specialist (Bronze): Fully upgrade a weapon.
    Scientist (Bronze): Complete any research project in the Normandy's laboratory.
    Fashionista (Bronze): Personalize your armor.
    Power Full (Bronze): Evolve any power.
    Broke, Blind and Bedlam (Bronze): Gain the loyalty of the thief.
    Data Hound (Bronze): Collect 6 Cerberus data packets scattered across Aite.
    Digital Exorcist (Bronze): Successfully shut down the rogue VI in Project Overlord.
    The Price of Revenge (Bronze): Gain the loyalty of the mercenary ('Cerberus Pack' downloadable content).
    Mission Accomplished (Silver): Save humanity throughout the galaxy from certain annihilation.
    Against All Odds (Silver): Survive the suicide mission.
    Long Service Medal (Silver): Complete Mass Effect 2 twice, or experience the interactive backstory (Cerberus Pack downloadable content) and complete Mass Effect 2.
    Paramour (Silver): Successfully pursue a relationship with a teammate.
    Power Gamer (Silver): Reach Level 30 with one character.
    Heart of Darkness (Silver): Confront the Shadow Broker.
    Insanity (Gold): Complete the game in the 'Insanity' difficulty level without changing the setting.
    No One Left Behind (Gold): Keep your team alive through the suicide mission.
    N7 Elite (Platinum): Acquire all trophies.

The following trophies require the "Arrival" bonus downloadable content:

    Covert Action (Bronze): Rescue Dr. Amanda Kenson without attracting hostile attention.
    Last Stand (Bronze): Complete all 5 waves in the battle for Object Roh.
    Ultimate Sacrifice (Bronze): Complete the Arrival DLC.

The following trophy requires the "Cerberus" bonus downloadable content:

    The Price of Revenge (Bronze): Gain the loyalty of the mercenary.
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