Nightsolo's Mass Effect 2 Walkthrough.




Contents


Prologue

After the opening cutscene, either Kaidan or Ashley (depending on who survived Mass Effect 1) will run up to a helmeted Shepard and initiate dialog. You can respond with They'll be here or They damn well better, then There's no time to argue or I gave you an order! After dialog, you get control of Shepard, and the Mission "Prologue: Save Joker" starts. Follow the only path you can up to the Normandy's Bridge. Approach Joker, and you enter dialog. Joker wants to stay and try to save what's left of the ship, and you can reply with Don't throw your life away or Don't be stupid!. Another cutscene plays, showing your death...

...or not. After an FMV showing your resurrection, you can choose an appearance (remember Shepard was helmeted in the intro), a class, and possibly a bonus power. You wake up on an operating table, with Miranda giving you instructions over some speakers. This is the tutorial section of the game, and the point where you create your character. If you're importing a character from Mass Effect 1, you can still tweak your Shepard's appearance and class.

When you're ready, follow Miranda's instructions. Walk over to and Open the Weapons Locker to get the M-3 Predator Heavy Pistol and some armor. The game helpfully puts giant pulsing arrows in the game world for you to follow, as well as giant flashing instructional text for you to read. You don't have any ammo, but you'll get some in a minute. Walk over to the indicated spot and Take Cover. When you do, a door will be blasted open. Go through and walk over the Thermal Clip to pick it up. (Thermal Clips will be explained in ME3. Maybe.) Reload your weapon, and continue through the next door.

In the next room, kill the lone Hacked Mech, then go up the stairs it came from. When you take cover in the next room, four more Hacked Mechs will enter. In the small room to the side from which they entered is another Thermal Clip. Go up the stairs and through the doorway. Witness a large mech mowing down some Cerberus employees, then Open the door to the right. Take the M-100 Grenade Launcher and learn how to equip it. Use it on the mechs on the floor below, then go right and ride the platform down. Storm through the fire and continue through the corridor ahead. Miranda will drop out of contact. In a room across the hall are a pair of laptops you can Access to listen to background on the Lazarus Project (yourself). Save, then Bypass the Wall Safe on the wall to get some Credits.

Remember the children's matching game "Memory?" Bypassing is the same thing, but with a time limit. Hover the cursor over a node to see its symbol. When you find two that match, click them both, one at a time, to link them. If you match wrong nodes three times, the object you're trying to get into will lock permanently. Be sure to save before you Bypass anything.

Exit the room and go through the hallway and up the stairs. At the top is a Public Computer you can Access to hear some not-so-public comments. Go through the door and kill the Hacked Mechs in the next room. You'll meet Jacob Taylor, who can tell you about what's been going on in the Galaxy while you were dead. Respond with Just a few questions for some Paragon Points, or I need answers! and I'm tired of taking orders! for some Renegade Points. You'll be interrupted by some mechs. Jacob is now in your squad, and you can use him to help. After you kill the mechs, you'll talk to Jacob again. After the conversation, there's a Data Pad you can Access to hear about Wilson's success.

A previously locked door will now be open. Go through and pick up a Thermal Clip on the right side of the hallway. Continue through the next door and kill a few more mechs, while Jacob and Wilson talk over the radio. Go around the pipes in the middle of the room. Wilson will call over the radio and ask for help. Exit the door, go up some stairs and go left. Guess what: yet another laptop to View another of Miranda's Logs.

Go back and Open the door at the top of the stairs. Talk to Wilson, who's injured and taking cover. You can say Let's get you out of here for some Paragon Points. Wilson tells you to get some Medi-Gel from a nearby Medical Station, and the tutorial text tells you how to use it on him. Wilson is then willing to talk to you, and you enter dialog with him. You'll be interrupted by some mechs, and Wilson and the tutorial suggest using his Overload Power to clear a path. However you kill the mechs, the conversation will continue. Leave through the door the mechs came through, and you'll see a Data Pad on the floor you can Hack to get some Credits.

Hacking requires that you match three blocks of code, displayed at the top of the screen, with three columns of blocks that scroll past below. Every block has a distinctive feature that makes it unique; for example, three blocks of indented purple text at the top. Use the Movement Keys to highlight a scrolling block, then hit Space to select it. The next block of code you're looking for will appear at the top. There is a time limit, and selecting the wrong block three times will permanently lock the object you're trying to Hack. Highlighting a block with a red X on it will also use up one of your three chances. Be sure to save before you Hack anything.

Go down the nearby stairs, hang a left, then go up the stairs and kill a few more mechs. Go and in the open room on the left, and you'll find a Data Pad, a Wall Safe, and another Laptop. Turn around and go through the door on the far side of the platform. You'll meet up with Miranda. She'll kill Wilson, and when she explains why, you can say I knew he was lying for some Renegade Points. You can also use the Investigate option on the left to learn more.

You'll then board the shuttle, which takes you to see the Illusive Man. On the way, Miranda and Jacob will ask you some questions to "test" your memory. Even if you imported a character from Mass Effect 1, and even if you went through the Genesis DLC, you can now alter a couple of the decisions you made. Depending on your chosen background, there are several opportunities for both Paragon and Renegade Points.

When you arrive at the Illusive Man's station, Jacob and Miranda will be standing nearby, but won't have anything to say. Also in this room is an Armor Locker, where you can Customize your Gear. Go down the stairs and you'll converse with the Illusive Man. He'll explain why he brought you back to life, and what he wants you to do. Again, there are several opportunities for both Paragon and Renegade Points.

After the conversation, go back up the stairs. On the right side is a Locker where you can change your appearance again. Jacob will now talk to you. Between this conversation and the next on the shuttle to Freedom's Progress, there are more opportunities for both Paragon and Renegade Points.


Freedom's Progress

You will be taken to the colony of Freedom's Progress. On the ride, you'll have a conversation with Miranda and Jacob. Go through the first prefab structure, hang a left, and go down the stairs across the eerily quiet open area. To the left of the large door are some Spare Parts you can Salvage for some Credits. Open the large door and kill some mechs. Go up the stairs to the right, and in the next structure is a Med Kit and a Wall Safe. As you exit the structure, two mechs will attack. Kill them, and after the battle there are some Spare Parts to Salvage on the left.

In the next building, you'll meet some quarians, led by your old teammate Tali. She's initially incredulous at your being alive. Convince her, and the next step is to convince the other quarians. Whatever you say is apparently good enough, so Tali explains that her group is there to rescue a fellow quarian. Tali then outlines a plan. You can agree or protest, but the mission continues.

In the next building is a Wall Safe guarded by a dormant mech, and just outside are some Assault Drones and Rocket Drones. Once they're down, go in the next room to find a Thermal Clip on the floor and a Med Kit on the coffee table. Don't be surprised if you end up with Credits instead of Medi-Gel, as you get the former when the latter is full. Go through the next building, down the stairs and you'll be attacked by some more drones. In this courtyard are another Med Kit and some more Spare Parts to Salvage. Follow the tutorial instructions and position your squad mates on either side of the door. When they get there, a cutscene plays showing Tali opening the door and the rest of the quarians being wiped out by a YMIR Heavy Mech. You, Jacob, and Miranda move up and take cover, then you regain control and have to kill the thing.

Once it's destroyed, on the side of the open area in a small structure is a box of Power Cells for heavy weapons, a Thermal clip, and a Wall Safe. On the west side of the open area is some refined Iridium you should Open, as well as a Damaged YMIR Mech you should Scan to reveal some research for later. In the building on the north side is a Med Kit. Tali and the surviving quarians are in here as well. If you try to talk to Tali, she suggests Veetor is elsewhere.

Go in the building on the west side, and you'll meet Veetor, the missing quarian. When your greeting doesn't work, use an interrupt. Watch for the blue or red icon and right-click for a Paragon interrupt or left-click for a Renegade interrupt. Veetor will then snap out of it and show you some security footage of a race called the Collectors, and the method by which they abducted all the colonists. There are a couple of neutral dialog options, and several investigate options. Tali will then request that you allow Veetor to return with her, and Miranda and Jacob will want to interrogate him. Say Veetor goes with Tali, and she'll give you his Omni-Tool, whereas Veetor has to come with us will make Miranda and Jacob happy.

After the conversation, you'll find yourself transported back to the Illusive Man again. He explains he knew all along about the Collectors, and tasks you with putting a stop to them. It's a suicide mission, though you can't do it alone. He gives you some dossiers of people for you to recruit. The Illusive man recommends you start by recruiting Mordin Solus (I agree), and introduces you to your new pilot: Joker. You then walk out of the communications room and Joker briefly explains what happened to your squad after you died. There is then an FMV of the Normandy SR2 being revealed.


Normandy: 1st Visit

Shepard, Miranda, and Jacob board the Normandy. Miranda recommends starting by recruiting Mordin Solus (again, I agree). A voice comes over the intercom and agrees with Miranda. It is revealed to be an AI. Respond how you like, but there's no getting rid of it (her?). Jacob heads off to the Armory, and Miranda to her Office. You then get a tutorial of some important locations on the ship.

There is a lot to do here. When you regain control of Shepard, you'll be on Deck 2, port and aft of the Galaxy Map. Visit every room on every deck, and Talk to everyone you can. Many rooms won't be accessible until you recruit more squadmates. There is an EDI terminal in many locations. Talking to her at each will give you some information on that location.

Examine the Controls on the starboard aft side of the Bridge for a Codex Entry.

Examine the Flight Controls next to Joker on the Bridge for a Codex Entry.

Joker is at his usual spot on the Bridge. Talk to him to learn he loves his new pilot's seat, but hates the AI. Dialog will end, but you can Talk to him again and investigate a few things. When you ask how things are in the cockpit, Joker will complain about the AI again. Every time you come back from a Mission or Assignment, you can ask Joker's opinion on the people you took with you. His comments can be fun.

Talking to EDI on the Bridge is the way you converse directly with "her" - i.e. like when you converse with any other crew member. You can learn a little about her and about Cerberus, but she's prevented from going into too much depth.

Yeoman Chambers is standing aft of the Galaxy Map. (She is one of the people whom Shepard can romance, though following through to the end won't get you the Paramour Achievement.) After she introduces herself, you can opt whether or not to call her by her first name, though for technical game reasons, it's impossible for her to call you by your first name. Awkward. When you investigate what she does on the ship, you can choose to like it or not.

Your Private Terminal is next to Kelly Chambers. Open it for access to emails and such. You can get information on your squad members, and cycle their appearances, if available. If you've installed any DLC, you'll have emails regarding all the equipment, as well as Overload, Zaeed, and Kasumi. You can also watch the three training videos to get the Highly Trained Achievement.

In the Armory, you'll find the Weapons Locker, where you can Choose Loadouts for your squad mates in between missions. You'll also be able to alter loadouts at the start of every Mission. Jacob is here, too. He'll tell you how happy he is to be serving on the Normandy.

In the Comm Room, you can ask EDI how it's possible to communicate with the Illusive Man instantaneously and securely.

The Tech Lab won't be open until you recruit Mordin Solus, aka The Professor.

The Elevator, besides transporting you between decks, will show you what and who is on each deck.

Deck 1 is Shepard's Cabin. Your fish tank is empty, for now. When you do get fish, be sure to feed them often - every single time you come back to the Normandy, no matter why you left. Any Models you pick up will be on the shelves here. If you find the Space Hamster, he'll be here as well. There is a duplicate of your Private Terminal here, as well as a Medals Case where you can View your Achievements. There's a restroom, where you can Use the Toilet, but all it does is make a flushing sound. The Sound System next to the bed will play music, but only within hearing range. Lastly, the Armor Locker can be used to customize both your casual attire and armor. Note that the helmets on the Full Suits are on even during dialog.

Down on Deck 3, there are two restrooms on either side of the elevator. You can go in them, but can't do anything there. EDI will admonish you if you enter the one belonging to the opposite sex as Shepard. Life Support, the two Observation Decks, the Main Battery, and the AI Core are locked until you recruit the characters who will live there. Crewmembers Rolston and Patel hang out in the Crew Quarters. You can eavesdrop on their conversations, but can't otherwise interact with them.

Dr. Chakwas is back in the Medical Bay for another tour of duty with you. When you first greet her, say Why are you here? for some Paragon Points. She can tell you why she's working with Cerberus, and if you ask if she needs anything, she'll ask for a bottle of Serrice Ice Brandy, which is the Assignment "Normandy: Serrice Ice Brandy."

In the Kitchen is Mess Sergeant Gardner. He's the ship's Cook and Janitor. Yes: both. When you ask if he needs anything, he mentions picking up some better food on the Citadel, but backtracks when he realizes you have more important things to do. You can, however, still accept the Assignment "Normandy: Special Ingredients".

Miranda is in her Office behind the kitchen. Male Shepards can start a relationship by being nice to her. She can tell you more about Cerberus than Jacob and EDI combined. She'll also share a little about herself.

On Deck 4, the Starboard and Port Cargo Holds are locked until you recruit the characters who will live there. Just off the Elevator, Use the Monitoring Station to pick up a Codex Entry. Go through either door straddling the Elevator, and you can Talk to Engineers Donnely and Daniels. Yes, Donnely is Scottish. (Many times you can just stand nearby and eavesdrop on them flirting with each other.) When you first meet, you can say Shape up! for some Renegade Points. You can also ask them if they need anything, and they'll give you the Assignment "Normandy: FBA Couplings."

And that concludes your initial tour of the Normandy.


Omega Station

The first part of the game is to recruit some squad members. The first set are Dr. Mordin Solus, Dr. Okeer, Jack, and Archangel. I recommend following the advice of the Illusive Man, Miranda Lawson, and EDI: to start with Mordin, as this will open up the Tech Lab on the Normandy, allowing research. Open the Galaxy Map in the Normandy's CIC on Deck 2. You start in the Sahrabarik system, and Omega Station is conveniently located near your ship. Left-click and hold to fly the Normandy over there, and the Enter Orbit button will pop up at the bottom of the screen. Click that to zoom in. You may optionally read the description. Click the Dock button and an FMV will play showing the Normandy approaching Omega Station. Both Mordin and Archangel are on Omega. If you have the Zaeed DLC, he'll be here as well.

This paragraph is the same every time you leave the Normandy. The Squad Selection screen comes up. Left-click each squad member in turn that you want to take with you, then click the Add button. Next is the Squad Points screen, where you can assign any unspent talent points for your squad members. Lastly is the Loadout. If you want different weapons on your characters, you can change those here.

You'll immediately enter dialog with a guard named Moklan. He tells you to go see Aria (with whom you'll need to speak with eventually anyway).

If you have the Zaeed DLC installed, he'll be beating up a Batarian just ahead. Approach and Talk to Zaeed. Learn what's going on, then tell him to get to the Normandy. Upon exiting dialog, he'll walk back to the Normandy. If you want him in your squad immediately, go back to and Open the Docking Area, then choose Request a New Squad Member.

Open the door to the north and go through. Straight ahead, if Tali is in your squad, there's a spot on the line of people where she'll comment. To the left is the Transport Bay. If Miranda is in your group, You can Talk to her about the view to get her opinion on the place. Hang a right, and you'll see two doors. Go in the door on the left labeled "lower section." Go down the stairs and through the next door. Straight ahead, Talk to Kenn, who wants you to buy some of his stuff. To get a discount, respond with either Maybe we can cut a deal or Your prices are insulting. Ask why he's there, and ask about Harrot. This is the Assignment "Omega: Struggling Quarian."

Shisk is standing nearby, and is just smart enough to not talk to you. He won't even tell you who Gavorn is. (He's a Turian standing just east of Afterlife. Even though the two will mention each other, there are no quests involving either Shisk or Gavorn) Head up the stairs and hang a right. Just up the next set of stairs on the left is Harrot's Emporium. Talk to Harrot. In convincing him to let Kenn go, say what you like, as either way he offers you a discount at his Kiosk. He has a couple of armor pieces, as well as the Geth Ship Model and the Hack Module.

Return to Kenn's Salvage, and tell him the good news, then you can offer to buy his ticket with I could pay your way. If you do, he'll leave, but his Kiosk still works. There, you can buy a Heavy Weapon Ammo Upgrade Research, the Couplings needed for the Assignment "Normandy: FBA Couplings," a Heavy Skin Weave Upgrade Research, and a Shotgun Damage Upgrade Research.

The other shop in the area is the Omega Market. Talk to Marsh before buying anything to get your discount. Convince me to shop here or These prices are insulting will do the trick. His wares are the Stimulator Conduits, the Turian Cruiser Model, a Sniper Rifle Damage Upgrade Research, and Fornax. If you buy the last two, you'll get their corresponding Codex Entries. If Samara is in your squad, there's a point by the "FOOD" store where she'll comment on the vista.

Go in the main entrance for Afterlife. Talk to Kylan, a Batarian who rises at your entrance. He threatens you, and you can get him to back down with either Careful now, or A dead man. Continue in through the next door. Take a right, and if Zaeed is in your squad, you can Talk to him to learn is opinion on "places like this." You can also Buy the bottle of Serrice Ice Brandy on the bar for the Assignment "Normandy: Serrice Ice Brandy." Talk to the Bartender to [Order drinks]. The more you order, the more blurry and tilty the camera gets when you eventually [Walk away].

Go through the door at the back. If in Mass Effect 1 you convinced Helena Blake to abandon her criminal path, she'll be here to thank you for helping her. Go down the nearby stairs and Talk to the batarian bartender Forvan. be sure to [Order a drink] from him. You'll pass out and wake up in an alleyway. One of your squadmates will inquire as to your health. A human named Henner then tells you were poisoned, and not to order drinks at Afterlife. Use the two investigate options on the left, then continue the conversation. This is the Assignment "Omega: Batarian Bartender." Go down the nearby stairs, through two doors, then up and into Afterlife. Talk to Forvan again. When he offers you a free drink, choose [Incite the crowd] or [Make him drink it]. If you choose the latter option, he'll die. The former will cause him to apologize and explain why he did it.

Also in this area you can Dance with a Patron or Watch a Dancer. If Fist survived your encounter in Mass Effect 1, he'll be here, and you can converse with him for some Paragon or Renegade Points. West of Fist through a door is Patriarch. Talk to him to learn about his history with Aria. Speaking of whom, go back to the upper level of Afterlife, and up the stairs at the back. Approach Aria T'Loak to initiate conversation. Everyone pulls guns, then one of her goons insists on a scan. No matter how you respond, Aria lets you pass with your weapons, and will introduce herself. Go through the Investigate options, then ask about Mordin and Archangel.

Go out the main entrance and hang a left. Go through the door on the right labeled "apartments." You can Talk to the Mad Prophet if you would like to hear his anti-human rhetoric. Time to get Mordin. See The Professor for how to do that. After recruiting him, you'll be back aboard the Normandy. The new things to do are to Talk to Mordin to get an Upgrade for Mordin's Omni Tool, Investigate the Research Terminal to get all the Upgrades you can, and to Talk to Yeoman Kelly Chambers to learn her opinion on the good Doctor. Joker will comment on the people you had in your squad for the mission.

When you're ready, Open the Galaxy Map and Dock with Omega again. Time to recruit your next squad member. See Archangel for how.


Normandy: 2nd Visit

After you've got Archangel, you'll be back aboard the Normandy. Buy whatever research is available, Talk to Kelly to learn her opinion on Garrus. Joker will be glad Garrus is back, and as usual, will comment on who you took as squad mates.

Head down to Deck 3 and Talk to Garrus some more. He will suggest the Thanix Magnetic-Hydrodynamic Cannon as an upgrade to Normandy's guns, and you'll get the Codex entry for it when you Research it. He'll also tell you about his life as Archangel. Scan the Monitoring Station here for two Codex Entries.

Talk to Dr. Chakwas to hand her the bottle of Serrice Ice Brandy she asked for, and to complete that quest. Agree to open the bottle and drink it right then and there. You can toast right away, or keep asking questions using the option on the left, and eventually, you'll come to the choice "There's our toast!" After the conversation, you'll have unlocked a Medi-Gel Capacity Upgrade. Later, she'll send you a message saying the Med Bay can be upgraded to remove the scars on your face leftover from when Cerberus rebuilt you. Go to the Lab on Deck 2 to Research it, then down to Med Bay to use it, if you want to.

On Deck 4, Take a right off the elevator and Talk to Zaeed in Starboard Cargo. Unlike with other squad mates, there's no cinematic mode when he speaks to you. Examine the other objects in his room to learn the stories behind them. The Rifle you can Examine multiple times. Zaeed has a lot of stories. Talk to the engineers to hand in the FBA Couplings they asked for. Donnely will ask if you'd like to play cards with them, and you can do so or not. If you do decide to gamble, say either Go easy on the new guy or Remember, I'm the boss. You'll win, and the engineers will realize why you're the one in charge.

Time to do some exploring. The following places are available to explore:
Caleston Rift: Aysur, Balor, and Yakawa Systems
Eagle Nebula: Amun, Imir, Malgus, Relic, and Strabo Systems
Hades Nexus: Hekate, Hoplos, and Pamyat Systems
Hawking Eta Cluster: Century, Chandrasekhar, Schwartzchild, and Verr Systems Hourglass Nebula: Faryar, Osun, and Ploitari Systems
Ismar Frontier: Aquila, Elysta, and Faia Systems
Omega Nebula: Amanda, Arinlarkan, Fathar, Kairavamori, and Sahrabarik Systems
Serpent Nebula: Boltzmann and Widow Systems Phoenix Massing: Chomos, Salahiel, Tassrah, and Typhon Systems
Titan Nebula: Haskins System

The following Missions and Assignments are available to complete. I recommend holding off on the last Dossier Mission, because as soon as you complete it, you'll be forced to go to Horizon for the next Plot Mission. On the other hand, these will still be available later, so if you want a specific squad member you don't get yet, feel free to hold off 'till then.
Citadel: Captain Bailey
Citadel: The Council
Citadel: Crime in Progress
Citadel: Krogan Sushi
Dossier: The Convict
Dossier: The Master Thief (Kasumi DLC)
Dossier: The Veteran (Zaeed DLC)
Dossier: The Warlord
Loyalty: The Price of Revenge (Zaeed DLC)
Loyalty: Stealing Memory (Kasumi DLC)
Omega: Archangel: Datapad Recovered
Omega: The Patriarch
N7: Eclipse Smuggling Depot
N7: Lost Operative
N7: Wrecked Merchant Freighter
Normandy: Special Ingredients
Normandy: Crash Site (DLC)
Overlord (DLC) {Possibly do after the Suicide Mission}
Project Firewalker (DLC) {Do before Overlord}


Horizon

After you've completed all four of the Dossier Missions that the Illusive Man handed you, you'll notice two things: 1) when you walk by Kelly, she'll mention that the Illusive Man wants to talk to you, and 2) when you access the Galaxy Map, Joker will tell you that the Illusive Man wants to talk to you. You won't be able to go anywhere in the galaxy, so go to the Briefing/Comm Room and Activate the Message Terminal. Doing so starts a dialog with the Illusive Man, followed by a cutscene with Mordin, followed by another cutscene showing the Collector attack on Horizon.

From the landing zone, round the first corner and you'll be attacked by the Collectors. Once they're down, Pick up the Power Cells and Hack the DataPad for some Credits. Continue up the hill and drop down to the next area. Kill some more Collectors and Husks, then Access a DataPad in the building to the right. Continue and Examine the Dead Collector for a Heavy Skin Weave Upgrade Research. Examining a Dead Husk further up will start a brief dialog with your squadmates.

Around the next corner area some more Collectors to kill. In the prefab to the left is a Med Kit, and in the prefab to the right is a Safe that can by Bypassed for some Credits. Examine the Stasis Colonist to have a brief conversation with your squad. Go up the stairs to the right and find a room with a computer that you can Hack for some Credits. Go back down the stairs and pick up the Collector Particle Beam. Some more collectors will attack. Deal with them, and Access the Computer in the building to the right for some Credits. The building in the far corner of the open area has some Power Cells in it.

Next Bypass the large door to the north. Inside this Maintenance Station you'll find a mechanic. He'll tell you what your next step should be to save the colony. There is a Weapons Locker here if you'd like to change your loadout. Loot the Platinum, the Medi Kit, and the Wall Safe, then continue through the door opposite the one you entered.

You'll be attacked by some more Collectors. Once they're dead, you can pick up some Biotic Damage Research off a dead Collector, and get some Credits from a computer on the top level. When you're ready, Bypass the big door and out into the Tower area. Once you've destroyed all the enemies, approach the Communications Tower and Hack he Computer to give EDI access. She'll start getting the Defense Turrets online, but it'll take time. You must defend against several waves of enemies. Once the Praetorian is dead, the Turrets come online and chase away the Collector's ship. The loot in the area consists of Power Cells in the southwest corner, and a Med Kit on the platform to the north. The Praetorian will chase you until you damage it a bit, then it will drop to the ground to recharge its barrier. Take that opportunity to run to new cover some distance away. Repeat this several times to kill it.

Depending on who you saved in Mass Effect 1, either Kaidan or Ashley will show up and start a dialog with you. No matter if you romanced either in Mass Effect 1, they won't join you here. After this, you'll be back talking to the Illusive Man. Jacob will then make some comments, and you'll be free to explore again.


Normandy: 3rd Visit

Buy whatever research is available.

Most of your squad mates will have new conversations.

Time to do some exploring. The following places are available to explore:
Caleston Rift: Solveig and Talava Systems
Crescent Nebula: Lusarn, Ondeste, Tasale, and Zelene Systems
Hades Nexus: Sheol System
Nubian Expanse: Dakka, Kalabsha, and Qertassi Systems

The following Missions and Assignments are newly available to complete. You'll only be able to do five before being forced into the next Plot Mission, so choose carefully. On the other hand, these will still be available later, so if you want a specific squad member you don't get yet, feel free to hold off 'till then.
Arrival (DLC) {Possibly wait until after the Suicide Mission}
Dossier: The Assassin
Dossier: The Justicar
Dossier: Tali
Lair of the Shadow Broker (DLC) {Maybe wait until max level}
Loyalty: The Gift of Greatness
Loyalty: The Prodigal
Loyalty: Subject Zero
Loyalty: Old Blood
N7: Mining the Canyon
N7: Endangered Research Station
N7: Quarian Crash Site
Omega: Packages for Ish


Collector Ship

After you've completed Horizon, and after you've completed five Missions or Assignments, you'll notice two things: 1) when you walk by Kelly, she'll mention that the Illusive Man wants to talk to you, and 2) when you access the Galaxy Map, Joker will tell you that the Illusive Man wants to talk to you. You won't be able to go anywhere in the galaxy, so go to the Briefing/Comm Room and Activate the Message Terminal. Doing so starts a conversation with the Illusive Man.

When you arrive, there's no one there to greet you. Follow the tunnel, Examining the Pod and Dead Bodies along the way. You will reach a testing area. Salvage the Collector Technology for some Credits, and loot the Med Kit, Power Cells, and Element Zero. When you're ready, Access the Terminal to learn about the Collectors. After the conversation, you'll get a choice of skill upgrades: either a new weapon class or a new ability. There is a Weapons Locker nearby.

Continue up several ramps, and Salvage some more Collector Technology and Access a Terminal with some Damage Protection Research Data. Continue to the large central chamber of the Collector Ship, and Use the Command Console to talk to the Normandy. You are then ambushed by Collectors. When they're all dead, go back to the starting platform and Access the Command Console again to reestablish a link with EDI.

You now need to escape the ship before it fully powers up. There isn't actually a time limit, so take your time fighting off the Collectors. Go through the first door and Salvage some Collector Technology. Fight off some Drones, then go down the ramp to the left. There are more enemies in the next area. When they're dead, on the far wall you can find some Power Cells, a Med Kit and some Element Zero. In the next room, several husks will attack, along with a Praetorian. Once the area is clear, continue through the only open door.

Continue to the left to Salvage some Collector Technology and get another Research Upgrade on the right. Continue through the tunnels, fighting Collectors and Husks as you go. When they're all dead, you'll get a cinematic showing your dramatic escape. You'll then be talking to the Illusive Man, followed by a conversation with Miranda, Jacob, and Mordin. Even if you do say it's time to go after the Reaper IFF right away, you'll once more be free to explore.


Normandy: 4th Visit

Buy whatever research is available.

Many of your squad mates will have new conversations.

Time to do some exploring. The following places are available to explore:
Crescent Nebula: Lusarn, Ondeste, Tasale, and Zelene Systems
Far Rim: Dholen and Ma-at Systems
Krogan DMZ: Aralakh, Dranek, and Nith Systems
Rosetta Nebula: Alpha Draconis, Enoch, and Phi Clio Systems
Shrike Abyssal: Urla Rast and Xe Cha Systems
Sigurd's Cradle: Decoris and Skepsis Systems
Valhallan Threshold: Micah, Paz, and Reheel-Leyya Systems

The following Missions and Assignments are newly available to complete. Unlike before, you can and should do all other available Missions and Assignments before the Reaper IFF Mission, because that closes some doors for you. I also recommend taking care of Illium, The Citadel, and Tuchanka, which I've put in their own sections below.
Dossier: The Assassin
Dossier: The Justicar
Dossier: Tali
Loyalty: The Ardat-Yakshi
Loyalty: Eye for an Eye
Loyalty: The Gift of Greatness
Loyalty: Old Blood
Loyalty: The Prodigal
Loyalty: Rite of Passage
Loyalty: Subject Zero
Loyalty: Treason
N7: Abandoned Mine
N7: Anomalous Weather Detected
N7: Archeological Dig Site
N7: Blue Suns Base
N7: Captured Mining Facility
N7: Endangered Research Station
N7: Imminent Ship Crash
N7: Javelin Missiles Launched
N7: Mining the Canyon
N7: MSV Strontium Mule
N7: Quarian Crash Site
Omega: Packages for Ish


Illium

Before heading here, go to Omega Station, and pick up the Assignment
Packages for Ish.

When you first arrive at Nos Astra, capitol of Illium, you'll be greeted by a Concierge. Things are a bit tense with her, but you can calm her down and then learn about the place from her Investigate options.

If you Read the Shipping Details towards the beginning of Dossier: The Justicar, a Krogran will meet you as part of the Assignment Stolen Goods Found.

Things to do in the Trading Floor area:

Things to do in the Eternity Bar: Things to do in the Cargo Transfer Area: Things to do in the Transportation Hub: When you're done here, you may want to consider completing Packages for Ish.

The Citadel

Before heading here, go to Omega Station, and pick up the Assignment
Packages for Ish.

There are a couple of things to do in the Docking Area:

The Rapid Transit system at the moment will only allow you to return to the Normandy or change your squadmates. All the other locations are greyed out. Go through the only door you can, and you'll be stopped by a security scan. Respond to the Turian C-Sec officer any way you like. Go through the next door and Talk to Captain Bailey. Respond how you like, and use the Investigate options if you like. When you exit dialog you'll be able to use the Rapid Transit, thus allowing you to go to the Presidium to complete Citadel: The Council.

In the central part of Zakera Ward, you can do the following:

In the eastern area, you can: The western part of the Ward is the Merchant District. Here you can: When you're done here, you may want to consider completing Packages for Ish.

Tuchanka

If you convinced the asari to accept her krogan lover back on Illium during the Assignment
Blue Rose of Illium, the happy couple will be here on the Landing Platform.

As you approach the door, the Overcaptain will inform you that the clan leader wants to speak with you. There's only one choice of dialog response, and then he lets you through.

To the west is Ratch. Agree to help him with his Pyjak problem in the Assignment Killing Pyjaks. Doing so will get you a discount at his store, where you can buy Pyjak Meat, some Upgrades, and some armor components.

If Grunt is in your squad, there's a spot in the rubble you can Talk to him about Tuchanka.

Up on the throne will be either Wrex, if he survived Mass Effect 1, or Wreav, if Wrex is dead. Talk to him as part of Grunt's Loyalty Mission, Rite of Passage and Mordin's, Old Blood.

In the middle of the map, you can place bets on varren pit fights. Your odds of winning are 50-50. If you killed pyjaks for Ratch, buy some Pyjak Meat and feed it to Urz, the varren right next to Ratch. He'll start following you around. Go to the Pit and bet on Urz. He'll win several fights in a row, then end up in the Med Bay. After awhile, he'll heal up and follow you around again, and you can bet on him in the Pit again.

If Zaeed or Samara are in your squad, there will be a spot on the Pit where they'll make a comment about dog fights.

Next to the pyjak guns is the Chief Scout, with whom you'll need to speak as part of Mordin's Loyalty Mission, Old Blood. Agree to take his Assignment Missing Scout.

North of the Pit is the Chief Mechanic, he wants you to complete his Assignment, Combustion Manifold.

In the Med Lab, you can Talk to Mordin if he's in your party about an Injured Krogan. In the back is a Pyjak you can Punch. Talk to Fortak to learn about the krogan scientist. After you complete Grunt's Loyalty Mission, you'll get a discount at the store here.

Up the stairs on the west side of the map is the Shaman. Talk to him to start Grunt's Loyalty Mission, Rite of Passage.


Reaper IFF

Unlike previous missions, you don't have to complete it right away. In fact, you may want to complete everything else first, as doing this mission will trigger some End Game Events. You can still complete some Missions and Assignments (Loyalty for Legion and Tali work well) after this, but there will be dire consequences, and some will have been closed off to you forever.

Go to Hawking Eta: Thorne System, and Dock with the Derelict Reaper. As soon as you enter, go left. There are several Wall Safes containing Credits here, as well as a Terminal detailing what happened to the Cerberus researchers. Continue and you'll learn that the only way off the ship is to shut down the kinetic barriers. Though the next two doors, go left to play another Log. Go right and continue along the catwalk.

Along the way you'll be attacked by Husks. Kill them, listen to the Logs, then one of your squad members will note the presence of a sniper. Loot the Palladium, get some credits off a Terminal, and Scan the Sniper Rifle Upgrade. Hang a left and continue down the ramp. You'll fight more Husks as well as a Scion. On the side is another Log to play. Hack the Research Terminal at the far end for a Heavy Skin Weave Upgrade. If Garrus, Jacob, or Tali are in your squad, you can comment on the Dragon's Teeth below.

Turn around and find the door to the left/east of the large platform. The next area is filled with enemies. Take them one group at a time and save between waves. Along the way you'll find several Terminals to grab credits off of, several Med Kits, some Palladium, a couple of Power Cells, and a Shotgun Research Upgrade. When you get to the end of the catwalks, there will be a door you have to Bypass to get through. Inside the short hallway is the Reaper IFF that you came for. Pick it up and go through the next door. Here is the Reaper Core. You will be continuously attacked by Husks, and the Core will periodically close. Keep an eye on it and shoot it whenever it opens. Your squad mates won't automatically attack it, so if you want them to help you, you'll have to pause the game and manually tell them to target it.

Back aboard the Normandy, you'll have a choice as to what to do with the geth you picked up. If you say that Cerberus gets the geth, you'll get some Renegade Points and 50,000 Credits. On the other hand, if you say I want to talk to it first, you'll get some Paragon Points, and the option to turn it on and gain another squad member: Legion. When you do talk to Legion, it'll give you its Loyalty Mission: A House Divided.

Other things to do on the Normandy include Researching the Upgrades you picked up and Talking to all your crew members. You get to go on one--and only one-- (or maybe two) more Mission/Assignment before the next section.


Collector Base

Joker Saves the Day

After you've completed that one (or two) Mission/Assignment, the next time you Open the Galaxy Map, EDI will tell you the ship needs time to integrate the IFF, and insists you take the shuttle to complete your next mission. After you respond, you get a cinematic where you and all of your possible squad mates enter the shuttle and leave.

Whatever mission Shepard was going on, you don't get to play it. Instead, you see the Normandy being attacked by the Collectors, and you wind up with control of Joker. Just follow the lighted path and do as instructed. The only tricky part is in engineering, when you see collectors moving on the deck above. Just wait at the bottom of the stairs until the door closes behind them, and EDI says it's clear.

Once Shepard is back aboard, you can have some new conversations with Joker and EDI on the bridge. Kelly isn't around to tell you about it, but you do have an unread message at your Private Terminal. Several of your squadmates will have new things to say.

Through the Relay

After you've completed two more missions, this will trigger automatically, or you can choose to go through the relay immediately. Going through the Omega 4 Relay is a point of no return, and you will not be able to complete any other Missions or Assignments before the end of the game. But, if you delay by going on any other mission first, half the Normandy's crew will be dead by the time you get to them, including Yeoman Kelly Chambers. If you complete more than three missions, everyone but Dr. Chakwas will be dead by the time you get to the Base. Also, you must have completed the three Ship Upgrades: Heavy Ship Armor, Multicore Shielding, and Thanix Cannon. Otherwise, each time the ship is attacked during the cutscene of your approach to the Collector Base, one random squad member will be killed. Lastly, the squad members you choose to fill certain roles must be Loyal if you want them to survive their tasks, and the squad members in Shepard's Team must be Loyal if you want them to survive. Before you access the Galaxy Map, talk to your squad mates one last time.

When you do Enter the Relay, if you have a romantic interest, you'll have a liaison with that person. Otherwise, Miranda will give a salute. Then you'll talk to the Illusive Man, who wants to make sure you're ready. A cutscene then plays, showing your arrival in Collector Space, and their attack on the Normandy. Depending on the upgrades you bought for the Normandy, when the ship is hit, you'll get a cutscene where a squad member is thankful for the upgrade, or if you lack the upgrade, a squad member will die. An Oculus will arrive in the docking bay, and you and the squad you choose will fight it. Hit it between the times it fires and take cover otherwise. Ditto on the second one.

The Normandy will then "land" on the Collector Base. Your team will be gathered in the Comm Room, and you'll come up with a plan of attack. You'll need to split into three teams. You will lead one, and you'll have to choose one person to lead the second team and once person to open doors. If you want the team leader to survive this mission, choose a Loyal squad member with leadership experience: Miranda, Jacob, or Garrus. If you want the Tech Specialist to survive, you must choose a Loyal squad member with great technical skills: Tali or Legion.

There is nothing to loot in this base (when would you use it?). Fight your way through the first section. As you go, your Tech Specialist will come up against some roadblocks, and the temperature in the tunnel will increase and threaten his or her life. You must Open each of eight Heat Exchangers before the bar at the bottom of the screen heats up, otherwise your Tech Specialist will die. You will be attacked all along the way, so be quick about taking down enemies so you can have a clear path to the Heat Exchangers.

After you open the last Heat Exchanger, you will get a cutscene of your teams' rendezvous. Depending on who you chose and their Loyalty, people will survive or die. You will then recognize some people in pods around the room. If you came here immediately, you'll see a lady from Horizon get liquefied, and if you delayed, it'll be Kelly Chambers who dies. You'll then need to split your squad again. First, you need a powerful biotic to protect you from the Seeker Swarms. If you want this person to survive, you must choose either Jack or Samara/Morinth, and she must be Loyal. Next, you'll also need to choose another Leader for the next distraction team, and the same criteria apply as before: Miranda, Jacob, or Garrus. Lastly, if you want the person you send as escort to survive, it doesn't matter who it is, but he or she must be Loyal. You also have the option of not sending an escort, but the crew will die without one.

In the next phase, stay under the bubble your biotic creates for you, and kill Collectors as you make your way along the path. Your biotic will stop at the start of every fight, so when the area is clear, save and tell the biotic to continue. At the end of the path, you'll get a cut scene where everyone runs to the next chamber just as the biotics give out. Your biotic may or may not survive, depending on who you chose, and their Loyalty status.

All of your surviving teammates will then gather, and you must choose two to go with you. If you want them to survive, they must be Loyal. Everyone else stays behind to give you cover. You then have one last chance to make a speech to everyone. Platforms full of Collectors will fly in. When one set is killed, a new platform comes in. When they're all dead, Activate the Controls on the last platform, and you'll fly off.

You'll encounter a new Reaper under construction. Waves of Collectors will then fly up to the platform. After each wave is down, the four "feeding tubes" will open up, each with a targeting bracket around it. Shoot one until it bursts, and the remaining tubes will close up again, triggering another wave. The tubes only take one shot each, so save your heavy weapon ammo. When all four tubes are destroyed, the reaper falls, and the Illusive Man will contact you and try to convince you to sterilize rather than destroy the base. Your choice is either No. We don't need it, or OK, let's take it and use it.

After you make your choice, the Reaper climbs back up. It has several weak points denoted by targeting brackets. Shoot any of them to reduce its total armor. Your squad mates should be able to handle the Collectors who fly in, but feel free to help them when the Reaper ducks out of view. As it gets low on health, the Reaper will start taking down platforms, with the exception of the middle one you flew in on. If you get low on Ammo, there should be Thermal Clips near the corpses of fallen Collectors. When the Reaper dies, it'll explode, killing non-loyal squadmates and trapping Loyal ones under debris. The final cutscenes then play, followed by the Credits. Congratulations on beating the game!

You thought that was it, didn't you. Nope! You now have the opportunity to finish any Missions or Assignments you may have left. Your surviving crew and squadmates will comment on your choice of the fate of the Collector Base.

last modified 29 March 2018