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Mass Effect 2 Game Guide & Walkthrough by gamepressure.com

Mass Effect 2 Game Guide & Walkthrough

Free iOS App iPhone & Ipad Download Game Guide PDF, ePUB & iBooks
Table of Contents

World Atlas - The basics - Character classes and powers - part 1 | World Atlas Mass Effect 2 Guide

Soldier class

Who should choose this class?

The soldier class allows you to play the game as a combat specialist and you should consider choosing it if you're interested in a fairly easy gameplay filled with a lot of dynamic battle sequences. A character who is a soldier specializes in using different types of weapons and he or she can also remain on the battlefield thanks to an excellent class ability which slows down time, making it easier to avoid enemy attacks. The main disadvantage of this class is that a soldier can't use any biotic or technological powers - this is where he or she will have to rely on other members of the team.

Adrenaline rush (unique class power)

This is by far the best power of this class and you'll want to use adrenaline rush in almost every new battle. Each time you've activated this talent you'll enter something that looks like bullet time - enemies will start moving closer, making it easy to move around them and to avoid their attacks at the same time. Developing this power results in a shorter regeneration time and you'll also want to reach level four to unlock either one of two specializations (they're both great).

Adrenaline rush lowers a difficulty level of almost every battle - World Atlas - The basics - Character classes and powers - part 1 - World Atlas - The basics - Mass Effect 2 - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Adrenaline rush lowers a difficulty level of almost every battle.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Hardened adrenaline rush

You receive 50% less damage while this power is active. I would recommend choosing this option if you plan on leaving your cover often.

Heightened adrenaline rush

Adrenaline rush can remain active for a longer period of time. I would recommend choosing this option if you plan on using the power to attack enemy units from a distance - you'll have more time to make precise shots.

Concussive shot

An interesting power that allows you to deploy projectiles which explode after making contact with a target. Developing this power increases the strength of the projectiles, as well as damage inflicted on enemy units.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Heavy concussive shot

One stronger explosion. I would recommend choosing this option if you plan on using the power to attack single, powerful targets.

Concussive blast

Several smaller explosions taking place within a three meter radius. I would recommend choosing this option if you plan on using the power to attack groups of weaker enemies.

Disruptor ammo

This power modifies your weapons so that you can shoot special bullets and this kind of ammunition allows to disrupts enemy shields, as well as inflicts more injuries to synthetic targets. Developing this power increases the damage done by the bullets. The power itself is not that great, however you will have to upgrade it (probably to a second level) if you want to unlock other (better) types of ammunition.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Heavy disruptor ammo

A chance to overload enemy shields and to make synthetic enemies explode. Useful in certain types of situations.

Squad disruptor ammo

Other members of your team may also start using this type of ammunition. This is a much better option, especially if you like taking other combat specialists on missions.

Incendiary ammo

This power modifies your weapons so that you can shoot special bullets and this kind of ammunition allows to set enemy units on fire. It also prevents your enemies from regenerating and damages their armor. Don't forget that incendiary bullets will work only on organic targets so if you're going against different types of enemies (for example - mechs) you should consider switching to a different type of ammunition. Developing this power increases the fire damage done by the bullets.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Inferno ammo

Your bullets not only can set enemies on fire but they also explode during contact. This allows the fire to spread to other people standing nearby. I would recommend choosing this option if you want to use ammunition to make precise attacks against large groups of enemy units.

Squad incendiary ammo

Other members of your team may also start using this type of ammunition. This is a much better option, especially if you like to rely on an entire team during battles.

Cryo ammo

This power modifies your weapons so that you can shoot special bullets and this kind of ammunition allows to freeze your enemies. I would strongly recommend taking special attention in this power, because cryo ammo is very useful while dealing with all sorts of threats. Sadly in order to unlock this ammo you'll probably have to upgrade other ammunition powers first. Developing this power makes it last longer which is crucial while going against stronger or armored foes.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Improved cryo ammo

An opponent remains frozen for two more seconds. This is not a useful option, unless you're planning on using this power only to attack much stronger enemies.

Squad cryo ammo

Other members of your team may also start using this type of ammunition. This is a much better option, allowing you to quickly freeze several targets (not necessarily standing close to each other).

Combat mastery

This category contains four passive powers. Each time you've advanced a level you'll extend your life bar, make your attacks stronger and you'll start earning more paragon or renegade points. Reaching the highest level should be on your list of priorities (only Adrenaline rush is more important).

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Commando

Smaller bonuses to: health, paragon/renegade points. Larger bonuses to: damage, charge attacks. This is a better option if you want to be more efficient on the battlefield.

Shock trooper

Larger bonuses to: health, paragon/renegade points. Smaller bonuses to: damage, charge attacks. This is a better option if you want to reach maximum values of a paragon bar or a renegade bar faster (30% difference!).

Infiltrator class

Who should choose this class?

The infiltrator class allows you to play the game as a combination of a combat specialist and a tech specialist and you should consider choosing it only if you're a more experienced player. Playing as an infiltrator requires to be more patient and to pay more attention to the character's health bar. The good news is that Shepard has a chance to move around undetected thanks to the class ability (Tactical cloak) and it's also possible to confuse enemy troops by taking control over certain individuals (AI hacking). An important thing to know about is that an infiltrator can use sniper rifles and this comes in handy while taking out enemy units from larger distances.

Disruptor ammo

This power modifies your weapons so that you can shoot special bullets and this kind of ammunition allows to disrupts enemy shields, as well as inflicts more injuries to synthetic targets. Developing this power increases the damage done by the bullets. The power itself is not that great, however you will have to upgrade it (probably to a second level) if you want to unlock other (better) types of ammunition.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Heavy disruptor ammo

A chance to overload enemy shields and to make synthetic enemies explode. Useful in certain types of situations.

Squad disruptor ammo

Other members of your team may also start using this type of ammunition. This is a much better option, especially if you like taking other combat specialists on missions.

Cryo ammo

This power modifies your weapons so that you can shoot special bullets and this kind of ammunition allows to freeze your enemies. I would strongly recommend taking special attention in this power, because cryo ammo is very useful while dealing with all sorts of threats. Sadly in order to unlock this ammo you'll probably have to upgrade other ammunition powers first. Developing this power makes it last longer which is crucial while going against stronger or armored foes.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Improved cryo ammo

An opponent remains frozen for two more seconds. This is not a useful option, unless you're planning on using this power only to attack much stronger enemies.

Squad cryo ammo

Other members of your team may also start using this type of ammunition. This is a much better option, allowing you to quickly freeze several targets (not necessarily standing close to each other).

Tactical cloak (unique class power)

Being able to use camouflage is probably one of the best things that can be said about the infiltrator class. There are two ways of using this power - you can rely on your tactical cloak to surprise enemy units or you can activate it each time you want to escape from a dangerous area after finding yourself under heavy fire. Developing this power makes the cloak last longer and gives a bonus to damage done by performing a surprise attack (this is a great opportunity while going against standard units, because in many cases they won't even have a chance to fight back).

Tactical cloak can be used to surprise enemies or to escape to safety - World Atlas - The basics - Character classes and powers - part 1 - World Atlas - The basics - Mass Effect 2 - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Tactical cloak can be used to surprise enemies or to escape to safety.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Assassination cloak

Bigger bonus to damage while using a tactical cloak. This is a better option in my opinion, especially when combined with the effects of a sniper rifle.

Enhanced cloak

Tactical cloak remains active for two additional seconds. This isn't a very useful option - you will only find it interesting if you like to activate camouflage to organize quick escapes.

Incinerate

This technological power works in a similar way to incendiary ammunition, because you can launch a projectile which sets your enemies of fire. There are also other advantages of using this power - you can prevent your enemies from regaining life and you can destroy their armors. Don't forget to use Incinerate only against organic targets. Developing this power increases the damage done by the projectiles. I would recommend unlocking one or two levels of this power, but you won't have to fully upgrade it.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Heavy incinerate

Your projectiles inflict more damage. This is a better option if you want your attacks to be effective against single and well armored targets.

Incineration blast

Large explosion taking place upon contact and within a three meter radius. This is a better option if you want your attacks to be effective against large groups of standard enemy units (they must be standing close to each other).

AI hacking

AI hacking is one of the best technological powers available in the game. Using this power allows you to take over synthetic enemies and each target you've been able to temporarily add to your team will begin attacking its allies. This is very useful in larger battles when you're going against a lot of enemy units at the same time. Developing this power makes it last longer and you can also create an additional shield which protects an enemy unit under your control.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Improved AI hacking

You can still take control over only one synthetic enemy, but the power lasts longer and your new ally is protected by a much better shield.

Area AI hacking

You can take control over several synthetic targets at the same time, however the power won't last long and your new allies will be using only standard shields.

Operative

This category contains four passive powers. Each time you've advanced a level you'll extend your life bar, make your attacks stronger and your abilities regenerate faster and you'll start earning more paragon or renegade points. You can also count on an additional slow motion effect while using a sniper rifle - it comes in handy while taking precise shots. Reaching the highest level should be on your list of priorities.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Assassin

Smaller bonuses to: health, regeneration time (powers), paragon/renegade points. Larger bonuses to: damage, slow-motion while using a sniper rifle. This is a better option if you want to be more efficient on the battlefield, especially in attacking your enemies from a distance.

Agent

Larger bonuses to: health, regeneration time (powers), paragon/renegade points. Smaller bonuses to: damage, slow-motion while using a sniper rifle. This is a better option if you want to reach maximum values of a paragon bar or a renegade bar faster (30% difference!).

Vanguard class

Who should choose this class?

The vanguard class allows you to play the game as a combination of a combat specialist and a biotic specialist and it's one of the best ones available in Mass Effect 2. The combination mentioned above is nearly perfect, because you can use some of the very powerful biotic abilities (including a deadly Shockwave and vanguard's unique Charge) without losing all the good sides of being a soldier. You should know that a vanguard is most effective in direct combat, so you'll have to choose your powers carefully and use a shotgun often in case something goes wrong.

Incendiary ammo

This power modifies your weapons so that you can shoot special bullets and this kind of ammunition allows to set enemy units on fire. It also prevents your enemies from regenerating and damages their armor. Don't forget that incendiary bullets will work only on organic targets so if you're going against different types of enemies (for example - mechs) you should consider switching to a different type of ammunition. Developing this power increases the fire damage done by the bullets.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Inferno ammo

Your bullets not only can set enemies on fire but they also explode during contact. This allows the fire to spread to other people standing nearby. I would recommend choosing this option if you want to use ammunition to make precise attacks against large groups of enemy units.

Squad incendiary ammo

Other members of your team may also start using this type of ammunition. This is a much better option, especially if you like to rely on an entire team during battles.

Cryo ammo

This power modifies your weapons so that you can shoot special bullets and this kind of ammunition allows to freeze your enemies. I would strongly recommend taking special attention in this power, because cryo ammo is very useful while dealing with all sorts of threats. Sadly in order to unlock this ammo you'll probably have to upgrade other ammunition powers first. Developing this power makes it last longer which is crucial while going against stronger or armored foes.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Improved cryo ammo

An opponent remains frozen for two more seconds. This is not a useful option, unless you're planning on using this power only to attack much stronger enemies.

Squad cryo ammo

Other members of your team may also start using this type of ammunition. This is a much better option, allowing you to quickly freeze several targets (not necessarily standing close to each other).

Charge (unique class power)

This is by the far the most powerful and most useful vanguard's ability and you'll want to use it in almost every battle. Activating this power allows your character to perform a biotic charge towards an enemy or a certain area of the map. If you hit someone during the charge that person either loses a lot of health or immediately dies. I would recommend practicing this ability with weaker opponents, because you may find yourself in trouble if you do it wrong. For example, an attack which is not precise may leave you vulnerable to enemy attacks. Same thing may occur while attacking a group of enemies, because you may not be able to hit all of them. It would be a good idea to have a shotgun as an active weapon each time you're planning on using this power, because if you miss or leave someone alive you'll have a chance to score an easy finisher. Charge can also be used to leave a dangerous area quickly, however this will come in handy only during primary missions (they're more difficult than side quests). Developing this power is very important, because you'll make your attacks stronger and you'll be given an additional protection.

Charge is an excellent offensive power, however you may want to practice it before using it in real battle conditions - World Atlas - The basics - Character classes and powers - part 1 - World Atlas - The basics - Mass Effect 2 - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Charge is an excellent offensive power, however you may want to practice it before using it in real battle conditions.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Heavy charge

Increased strength and you can also count on slowing down time after the charge has ended. This is an excellent bonus which may to prove to be very useful in keeping your main character alive.

Area charge

Smaller bonuses to charge strength and to shields, but instead you can release a powerful energy impulse to take down nearby enemies. I think that it's a slightly less interesting option, mostly because it doesn't improve your character's defences.

Shockwave

This biotic power is extremely useful while dealing with small groups of enemy units as long as you attack them from a short or from a medium distance. Each time you've activated this ability you'll send out several shockwaves, inflicting massive injuries and even knocking down some of your opponents. If you decide to start using this talent you should upgrade it as soon as possible, because each time you've unlocked a higher level you'll increase the range of your attacks, add additional waves and make them stronger.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Heavy shockwave

Increased strength of the shockwave. I would recommend choosing this option if you want to use the shockwave against small but well protected groups of enemy units.

Improved shockwave

Increased range of the shockwave. I would recommend choosing this option if you want to use the shockwave against larger groups of enemy units or if you want to make sure that the shockwave will hit moving targets.

Pull

This is one of the best biotic powers available in the game, even though you may have a different opinion at first glance. What this power does is that it lifts an opponent into the air, preventing him from fighting back. Naturally this method won't work on some of the stronger enemies you encounter, but you should still take a lot of interest into unlocking it. Developing this power isn't absolutely necessary, because the only difference is that it will last longer with each level up.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Heavy pull

Pull ability lasts for a little while longer - it's not that useful so you might want to choose the other option instead.

Pull field

You can grab and pull several opponents at the same time as long as they were standing close to each other. This is a much more interesting option which will come in handy especially while going against larger groups of enemy units.

Assault mastery

This category contains four passive powers. Each time you've advanced a level you'll extend your life bar, make your attacks stronger and your abilities regenerate faster and you'll start earning more paragon or renegade points. Reaching the highest level should be on your list of priorities (only the unique class ability is more important).

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Destroyer

Smaller bonuses to: health, regeneration time (powers), paragon/renegade points. Larger bonuses to: damage (normal & biotic). This is a better option if you want to be more efficient on the battlefield.

Champion

Larger bonuses to: health, regeneration time (powers), paragon/renegade points. Smaller bonuses to: damage (normal & biotic). This is a better option if you want to reach maximum values of a paragon bar or a renegade bar faster (30% difference!).

Sentinel class

Who should choose this class?

The sentinel class allows you to play the game as a combination of a biotic specialist and a tech specialist and the biggest advantage of this class is a large choice of powers. Thanks to this a sentinel is always a big asset to the team and can achieve a lot without anyone's help. Sentinels don't have to worry about encountering enemies resistant to biotic or tech attacks, because they can always use something that will actually work. Naturally members of this class aren't great in direct combat, however their technological armor makes them harder to kill than adepts or engineers.

Throw

Throw is even more interesting than Pull, because you won't have to worry about finishing off the enemy you've just "picked up". Instead your opponent will be thrown away automatically and almost immediately. I would strongly recommend developing this power, because with each level your throws will become stronger, making it very difficult for most of your opponents to survive even a single attack.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Heavy throw

Your throws are much stronger. I would recommend choosing this option if you want to use this power to eliminate strong single targets.

Throw field

You can throw several enemies at the same time as long as they were standing close to each other. I would recommend choosing this option if you want to use this power to eliminate larger groups of weaker units.

Warp

The biggest advantage of this power is that it'll help you in defeating enemies using armors or protected by additional barriers. If you're playing as a sentinel you won't have to unlock it right away, because additional bonuses offered by this power are reserved for an adept. Sentinel's biotic skills aren't good enough to justify upgrading Warp to level four, however you can count on this ability becoming more powerful with each upgrade.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Heavy warp

You have a chance of inflicting major injuries. I would recommend choosing this option if you're interested in eliminating single and power enemies.

Unstable warp

Increased power of the explosion as a result of other biotic powers being active. You shouldn't choose this option while playing as a sentinel.

Tech armor (unique class power)

I would recommend using this ability each time when eliminating a group of enemies from a larger distance is not possible or when you're interested in dealing with a group of weaker foes quickly. The biggest advantage of having the tech armor active is that not only it protects you but it also creates a massive impulse when it's destroyed. Assuming you've been standing close to enemy units the pulse mentioned above can knock them out, allowing you to retreat to safety. Obviously you should consider developing this skill, because not only will your armor become stronger but you'll also increase the effective range of the impulse.

Tech armor ability allows you to decrease the risk of suffering a sudden death - World Atlas - The basics - Character classes and powers - part 1 - World Atlas - The basics - Mass Effect 2 - Game Guide and Walkthrough

Tech armor ability allows you to decrease the risk of suffering a sudden death.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Assault armor

The impulse which occurs when the armor is destroyed is much stronger. This is a slightly more interesting option, mostly because you can receive an additional bonus to your shield if some of your opponents are still alive.

Power armor

Your tech armor is more resistant and your weapon and biotic attack deal more damage. You should consider choosing this option if you are planning on attacking enemies from a larger distance.

Overload

This tech power can be used only on certain types of enemies, but don't worry, because you'll have plenty of opportunities. I would recommend spending at least one point on Overload in the early stages of the game and fully upgrading it throughout the rest of the campaign. Activating this ability creates a massive impulse near the target which deals a great amount of damage. Developing this power results in the increase of its strength which is important, because you'll want to use it not only against weaker targets but also against powerful opponents.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Heavy overload

Increased strength of the impulse. This is a much more interesting option and you'll notice the difference while going against elite enemy units, including YMIR mechs. Choosing this option also gives you a chance for weaker enemies to explode when they're destroyed, damaging nearby targets.

Area overload

Increased range of the overload which allows you to weaken several enemy units at the same time. This is also an interesting option, however you can use the bonus only when going against larger groups of enemies.

Cryo blast

This technological power works in a similar way to cryo ammunition, mostly because you'll be given a chance to freeze your enemies. You should know that this trick works for all types of opponents, including organic and synthetic targets. It all makes this ability very useful and therefore you should take interest in it. As for further development of this power, it would be a good idea to take some time to think if this what you want, because unlocking new levels will only increase the amount of time in which your opponent if frozen. As a result you won't have to fully develop this power unless you're interested in the choices provided by the last development level.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Deep cryo blast

An opponent remains frozen for two more seconds. This is not the best option and you should consider choosing it only if you're planning on using this power to freeze much stronger opponents.

Full cryo blast

There's a chance that you may freeze several enemy units as long as they were standing close to each other. This is a more interesting option, because you'll be allowed to take out a lot of enemies without taking major risks.

Defender

This category contains four passive powers. Each time you've advanced a level you'll extend your life bar, make your abilities regenerate faster and you'll start earning more paragon or renegade points. Reaching the highest level should be on your list of priorities.

Options after reaching level four:

Options

Differences

Guardian

Larger bonuses to: health, regeneration time (powers), paragon/renegade points. The biggest disadvantage is that you won't receive any damage bonuses. This is a better option if you want to reach maximum values of a paragon bar or a renegade bar faster (30% difference!).

Raider

Smaller bonuses to: health, regeneration time (powers), paragon/renegade points. The biggest advantage is that you'll receive a 15% bonus to damage. This is a better choice if you're interested in being able to eliminate enemy units faster and more efficiently than before.

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