Inducing Substance: a Shepard's guide. (A playthrough of the Mass Effect series.)

Xzarloxara

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In this thread I will recount the tale of my playthrough of the Mass Effect Legendary Edition. This will be a mostly new experience for me, as I have only ever played the classic version of Mass Effect 1. I have never played any version of ME2 or ME3. I have heard some things here and there about these games over the years, but overall I have no idea what happens after Sovereign's defeat in the first game. I invite everyone to join me as I finally get through the whole series for the first time.

The detailed account of my journey will, for the most part, start at the beginning of ME2. I have already completed ME1 LE prior to starting this thread, and I don't believe I can recount in detail an entire game by memory, so if you have any specific questions about what I did in ME1 for this run, feel free to ask. I did take several screenshots during my run already and I will start by posting some of these with a basic rundown of my actions during the first game before proceeding to start ME2.
 

Xzarloxara

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Here is my Shepard, female obviously, with the squad she used for most of the game, Garrus and Wrex. Back when I played the classic version of the game I got into the habit of using the same two squadmates for the whole game so I could unlock their achievements. The character achievements are much easier to get in the LE version of the game, but old habits die hard. My Shepard is a Biotic, an Adept by class, and she uses a sniper rife in combat.
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My first move after becoming a spectre was to rescue Liara. Here I am fighting off the geth outside the ruin she was trapped in.
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After this I stopped an asteroid from destroying Tera Nova. Unfortunately I was forced to allow the Batarian behind this act of terrorism, Balak, to leave in order to save hostages.
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The next major mission I completed was Noveria. I found some Rachni there and set the queen free. I wonder what will happen to her...
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Next was Feros, where I destroyed a thing called a Thorian.
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After that, we raided Saren's base on Virmire. A beautiful planet with some very dark goings on which upset Wrex. Fortunately I was able to calm him down and he stayed loyal to me. Unfortunately, I was forced to sacrifice someone on my crew to save another. Kaiden did not make it out of Virmire...
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Then we went to Ilos to find the Conduit.
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After that, our adventure came full circle. We were back on the citadel and stopped the reapers from returning.
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I understand that many of my choices in this game affect what happens in the future so I will be happy to answer any specific questions about what I did. Overall though, you can pretty safely assume I made practically all the paragon choices. I know this post only covers the main quests of the game, but I did do a completionist run, so I did finish everything I could. Up next I will post some screenshots I took from my miscellaneous adventures. Oh, and I romanced Liara.
 

Cahir

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It's great to read about your ME:LE run in Tavern.

I too usually use fixed parties in crpg games, but Mass Effect have so many great team members, that I practically used them all across the whole trilogy. I gotta admit, there is no crew member that I don't like in this gsne. There were few companions from DLCs that were slightly less fleshed out than others, but even those NPCs I liked quite a lot.

Fantastic game overall. Granted, I used a lot of mods, so I missed the "infamous" ME3 ending, which turned to be great in my playthrough. The story is one of my favorite of all time. The main issue I have with it, but this is mostly due to the fact the game is quite old, is that exploration is generally dull, compared to newer titles. There is very few secret places, stashes, hidden paths etc.
 

Urdnot_Wrex

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The difference in graphics between the old and new version of the game is huge.
I have finished the whole trilogy, not all DLCs from ME2 though... no Kasumi for example, and no Shadowbroker, but just the graphics overhaul definitely makes it worth playing it again as Legendary Edition.
I mean look at Virmire there... wow.

Looking forward to how Mass Effect 2 (and later 3) impacts someone who knows Mass Effect 1 in and out.
 

Xzarloxara

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And now, as promised, some screenshots I took of my adventures on uncharted worlds.

I took this to show some nice armor I just got for Wrex.
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The aftermath of fighting one of the new and improved thresher maws from the LE. It came up under my mako and left it almost destroyed. I won in the end though.
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Here I am on an island of lava.
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Still on the lava world, I jumped my Mako onto an outpost.
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A world in a binary star system.
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Perhaps staring directly at a blue giant isn't the best idea guys...
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Much safer to look at a gas giant.
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My next update should be from ME2 if all goes as planned.
 

Xzarloxara

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I wake up after two years of being dead apparently and what do I see? The same damn crates I have seen a million times before! Ugh!
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Seriously now: a lot of info flew by the screen really fast. I may need to go back a bit and do that first area again. I should also have experimented with leveling my powers. By the way, if anyone has any advice on how I should buy my powers I would love to hear it.
 
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Xzarloxara

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First order of business is to make my armor look cooler.
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Having done that I moved on to my first mission. I must say that playing on insanity is much harder in this game than the first one. I died a lot, but oddly enough I did not die against the final boss of the mission. By tapping into the powers of a squirrel, I positioned myself behind a tall stack of boxes and kept moving so the big bot was on the other side of the boxes. It couldn't shoot me, but I was able to use my powers against it. Took a while but I did eventually wear it down and beat it, mostly on my own (because my companions died even more than I did).

Still getting used to the new mechanics of the game. I didn't even realize I had been given a third gun until I was half way through the colony.

Still not sure what to make of the story yet either. Most of the people I have met so far seem kinda shady and untrustworthy (I like Jacob though). And what about the reapers? Are they really behind the disappearing colonists? What the heck are collectors? Too many questions, not many answers...

And someone should tell Illusive that smoking is hazardous to one's health (as is staring at a star all day...).
 

Xzarloxara

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After poking around my new Normandy a bit, I decided to go to a station called Omega. Immediately upon arrival some guy told me to go see someone named Aria. A few steps further and I met a merc named Zaeed kicking a batarian around. He joined my team immediately and I thought "well, that was unexpectedly easy...". Now, despite being told to go see that Aria person, I had more pressing concerns on my mind: SHOPPING!!!! The markets had somewhat less than I expected, but I still bought a thing or two from them. One of the merchants was a Quarian who wanted to get off the station, so I gave him some money to buy a ticket.

After checking out the markets, I wandered down a hall toward some quarantined slum area. Lots of sick aliens and firefights going on in there. Saved a sick batarian's life and cleared a path for a stuck couple of humans to reach a med clinic run by the BEST DUDE EVAR!!!!
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Mordin. In our brief period of acquaintance, this has to be my favorite character so far in the series (maybe... I still like Wrex and Liara a lot)! He is the perfect mix of smart scientist and insane homicidal loose cannon! Absolutely hillarious!
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"Cloaca" LOL!!!

Anyway, after speaking with him I moved on to deliver a cure to the slums through enemy lines. It was at this point in the game where something magical happened! I finally think I figured out how to use my character effectively in combat! Until now I was trying to use my guns to kill the enemy, but, for an Adept, this seems to be the wrong approach. Using guns just brought me out from cover to do miniscule damage to my enemies while taking huge damage, myself. Instead I started using my biotic powers exclusively, and having my big chain lightning gun ready just in case someone got to close. For the entire remainder of this mission I only fired a single shot from my gun.

In any case, I wound up completing the mission successfully and got Mordin to join the group.

And now, A screenshot I took to showcase some rather familiar looking armor I found in the market.
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Antimatter

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Ah, the Red Dragon armour, brings back the Dragon Age: Origins memories. Dr. Mordin is one of the most iconic NPCs in gaming, I think. Btw, Zaeed - The Price of Revenge is a DLC pack for Mass Effect 2 that was released on January 28, 2010. It was initially intended to be released on January 26, 2010 with Mass Effect 2's launch, but was delayed.
 

Cahir

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I admit, I was not a fan of Mordin when I played ME2 for the first time, years ago, but playing recently Legendary Edition I was having a blast with him. He is indeed one of the best characters in ME2. Zaeed is the one of the least fleshed out characters, as the other NPC from DLC. But from the two, I like Zaed less.
 

Xzarloxara

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Well, I did a lot since the last update, but don't have many screenshots to show for it, unfortunately... In the heat of battle I usually forget to take them...

Not really knowing what else to do at the time, I decided to explore the nebula a bit. Wound up harvesting all the planets it had for resources. Then I used those resources to buy some upgrades. While I was doing this, I stopped off at the crash site of the Normandy SR1 and gathered some dog tags and placed a memorial. It was a bittersweet feeling, but I enjoyed it.
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After this, I returned to Omega to meet with Aria finally. Learned a bit about archangel and how I could get access to him. Joined up with the mercenaries and headed out to the site. Talking with some of the merc bosses, I began to suspect that Archangel was really Garrus, and I was right. Then... well... things got a little hectic... lots of fighting and shooting... and dying on my part... a LOT of dying... I got quite frustrated with it to be honest, but with perseverance (and a ton of reloading) I eventually made it through. I was using a giant singularity shooter gun for this adventure, but I think that may have been a mistake; it didn't have enough ammo to be used as much as I wanted. Oh well... Maybe next time I will use the cryo gun or something...

Not sure what I will do next. Maybe try to rescue the cerberus operative on that one planet I pillaged...
 

Xzarloxara

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Change of plans: Decided to head to the Citadel. Every store there is now my favorite store on the Citadel, heheh. Aside from all the shopping, familiar faces, lol moments, and minor quests, I had a meeting with the council and Anderson. The council is dumb, but the meeting went well enough I guess... Oh! I recruited another squad member: Kasumi. Seems to be a thief, and she kinda reminds me of Imoen from the BG series. Speaking of which, the best part of my visit to the citadel was getting to buy some pets for my cabin, especially the space hamster, which sounds EXACTLY like a certain other space hamster I know and love...
 

Xzarloxara

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After visiting the Citadel, I returned to the Omega nebula to do a short but interesting mission to recover some data on Cerberus activities. Not sure who to give the data to, I asked @Antimatter and was advised to keep it on the Normandy, so I did.

After this, I went back to to the serpent nebula to finish exploring it. I joined up with Kasumi to infiltrate a party and recover a graybox. It was a fun quest, with a very long final fight against a gunship. Nothing I couldn't handle.

Even in the future, pigeons are everywhere...
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Doesn't this look familiar? Are we sure I am playing Mass Effect?
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Xzarloxara

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Finished up exploration of the Hourglass Nebula after I rescued Jack. There were two side missions there I did. First I saved some boxes of money from 3 giant mechs that were trying to destroy them. Being the perfectionist I am, I decided to look online for possible ways to save all the crates. Learned that I could use the homing missile launcher weapon to lure the mechs up to the shuttle area so they didn't start to destroy the crates. It was a difficult fight since my squad mates died off pretty quickly, and those mechs are difficult to beat, but with perseverance and playing squirrel again around my shuttle, I was able to beat them all and save the crates.

Next I visited a wrecked ship balanced precariously on the edge of a cliff. I don't think it was actually possible to lose this mission, but the threat of it falling off the cliff was enough to... keep me on edge (pun intended).
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Xzarloxara

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Next I went off to do Zaeed's mission, turns out he was crazed with the desire for revenge. Unfortunately for him, his rash actions during the mission caused the bad guy to escape (since I was not about to take the renegade path and fail to rescue the innocents). Fortunately for me, though, I found an upgrade during the mission that allowed me to build a new big gun. It is called the Cain or something, and it is B I G. I flew to the crash site of the Normandy 1 to test fire it. After picking up my jaw from the floor, I took a few screenshots of it.
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Unfortunately it seems to have only one shot before running out of ammo, at least at its current ammo capacity. It also can hit me with friendly fire, not enough to kill me, but enough to strip my shields. Can't wait to test it out in combat, but will have to be careful as to when I use it. I think for the most part I will stick with the Blackstorm Singularity Projector since I can use it more often.
 
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