Mass Effect 2: True Fate of the Protheans

And now, we are on to Mass Effect 2. This one I felt like I had to be even more broad with my thoughts due to the fact that I absolutely love the story line in the second game. It's still popular among fans, a favorite out of most, I cannot choose this over the third game or vice versa.

How would I start this off? Hmmm, that's a good question, I mean to tell you the truth, when I first started my play through, I was informed by my dear brother that things would get much more complicated. He specifically mentioned the upgrades and loyalty missions which I made my top priority once I started.


Imagine it's like this: La la la, you've saved the galaxy from suffering a possible Reaper invasion and you're spending a helluva good time (not really) looking for remaining geth outside the veil until an unknown ship attacks the Normandy, destroys it and Shepard dies......only to be resurrected two years later by a human organization Cerberus and is given the task to destroy the Collectors that live beyond the Omega 4 Relay once they start abducting humans in the Terminus system. My guesses they stuck to the Terminus systems because that was where the Omega 4 relay took them. The whole concept of no ship has gone through that relay and has returned, is a classic act, especially since beyond it is the center of the galaxy where the base lies. My guesses was far away past all that wreckage and the base itself, is the super-massive black hole we believe to be in the center of our galaxy consuming a massive star. Kind of looks like Gargantua from Interstellar eh?

Anyway, this is where completing the game requires you to commit to building a good and loyal team to go up against a no-guarantee that everyone will survive sort of mission. 

This is what I call major commitment to the game, you're going to make sure you're 100% ready before you enter the fray. 

We get a whole new set of characters, as well as a few old friends returning in this game, and you know what they say: the more the merrier. I look at Miranda Lawson and I can just tell most of her looks aren't natural. She's also kind of unpredictable the way she kills Wilson on the spot, and what she does up in the next game. I feel like a lot of fans hate her, but she never bothered me, because I talked to her quite a bit, and learned that she wasn't so bad after all. 

Jacob is pretty nice too, but do yourselves a favor ladies and don't romance him, I didn't do it but it sucks how if you choose to, he leaves you for Brynn in the next game. Then we get introduced to one of my favorite salarians: Mordin Solus. Fast-talking, yet smart and a great doctor. I love making him sing after doing his loyalty mission. Then there's Jack, a biotic and convict: On my first play through I didn't have enough paragon points to settle the argument between her and Miranda, so I had to make a choice. I was eventually able to get her loyalty back, but after that, she wouldn't talk to me. Her attitude improves more in the next game, and I like how she eventually grows some hair. 

Grunt is definitely the krogan I'd considered my best guy friend in the Mass Effect universe. I love taking him with me because he just loves to shout out "I am krogan!!" it never gets old. I also have the DLCs for Zaeed and Kasumi. Zaeed is a badass, despite being a bit selfish sometimes, and Kasumi well she's not what I expected her to be, especially when you see what is in the part of the Normandy that she claims for her own.

I'm not sure what I enjoyed most in this game, the loyalty missions, or the ones towards stopping the Collectors, but I tell you, it wasn't such a surprise to me when I learned that what the Reapers were really doing to the Protheans was harvesting them, by turning them into monsters, and enslaving them to break down the captured human colonists into paste to construct a giant human Reaper.

While I like that concept, at the same time, I'm not sure what its purpose would be. How would it fly like Sovereign and the Reapers to come in the next game? It's like a giant Husk almost. That being said, I did everything I could to make sure I did the loyalty missions right and got all the ship upgrades on my first play through. Unfortunately, it took me three tries to make sure everyone survived the suicide mission. 

First time, I failed Samara's loyalty mission and forgot to reload back to try again, so she died. Second time, I fixed her mission, but Mordin died this time, and I found out that that's because I left him to fend off the Collector forces, when the ideal thing to do was to send him back to the Normandy with the surviving crew, or take him with you to the final part. Then everyone survived on my third attempt. But one thing I never fixed the first time, was I should have gone directly to the suicide mission after the crew was abducted. Instead I did two side missions because I wasn't sure if I was ready, and that resulted in only Chakwas being rescued, and I lost Kelly. Yeah, I wasn't a smart pyjak back then. But now, I always go straight to the Collector base after the crew is abducted.

I also like the look of the Collector ship, it reminds me so much of a Flood-infected ship for some reason, just less slimy if you know what I mean. By the time I reached the end of the suicide mission, I already knew what I was going to do before the Illusive Man even contacted me, (I hate that bastard). I was like "No fuck you, I've already made my choice, I'm destroying this base, whether you like it or not."

So whenever I do the suicide mission now, I always send Legion into the shaft, Miranda or Garrus leads the second squad and diversion team, and Samara does the biotic field through the seeker swarms.  My advice, and I'm sure everyone does this: Make sure you have everything you need prior to going to the derelict Reaper, and then do Legion's mission immediately afterwards. It's like once you're committed to it, don't stop to do other missions in between. I hate that derelict Reaper mission though, too many Husks running around, and the Scions too, but then again, even though Horizon and the Collector Ship may seem exciting.....it's those damn Praetorians.

Speaking of loyalty missions, there are two that I enjoy the most: That would have to be Garrus's and Samara's. It's nice to have one favorite that is straightforward, and the other involves a less typical approach where you have to rely on saying the right thing, rather than combat.

You didn't see that coming.
Now that I know how to do Samara's mission, I enjoy it, and the story about how it goes. Sad how one of Samara's daughters decides to abuse the ability to be an Ardat-Yakshi, and Diana seems pleased in the end that you have avenged her daughter. I wonder if anyone ever tried killing Samara in the final showdown, just to see what happens.

I also like the story behind the krogan clan formed and how Mordin's former assistant hopes to develop a new cure for the genophage. I of course, chose not to have it end that way, we don't need a rogue clan running around breeding and start a new uprising, do we now?

Sometimes I wish this game had more development around the turians, but it doesn't, however the rite of passage for Grunt is also another one of my favorite loyalty missions despite being challenging at times.

I kill it every time
That's right, I've killed the thresher maw, every time I do that mission. It's not as hard as it looks. You just need to stick to cover and aim carefully. That is why the Collector particle rifle is my best friend when it comes to fighting large or heavily armed enemies. Its capacity and accuracy are just what I need to take down a strong foe. Even though your goal is to survive, killing it is a bonus. I'm sure a lot of you have accomplished killing it on Insane difficulty. Nevertheless, I like thresher maws, I killed one once in the Sparta system in the Artemis Tau cluster. Now that was certainly no fun driving around in circles to avoid the nearly fatal green stuff it spits at you. Never liked driving the Mako.

I chose to romance Garrus on my first play through, and yes everyone is right, he is a little awkward first, but the moment he comes into my Femshep's cabin en route to the Omega 4 Relay, he starts to slowly get a confidence boost once she comforts him. Sure a forehead bonk may not seem like a lot but trust me, I think it's just the way he talks and is more affectionate by the time you get to the third game: that's what makes we fangirls go nuts.

I am also guilty of romancing Thane, which isn't regrettable either. He's really sweet with his words and when he calls my Femshep "siha". Then he finally opens up to you before the final battle that he doesn't want to die. I had tears in my eyes reading his final message at my terminal after his death on the Citadel. Now that was my one two-timer play through.

Now what's more freaky tha- DIRECT INTERVENTION IS NECESSARY
I think it's safe to say that the Collector General and Harbinger are the main villains. Harbinger is stuck in deep space with the rest of the Reapers so it uses the Collector General to have access to harvesting humanity in the galaxy....until they can enter the galaxy and do the harvesting themselves. Even though you never fight this General, he's the one who seems to always been under Harbinger's control, then Harbinger takes control of the other Collectors through the General it seems.

Isn't it irritating when you've almost killed a drone and then Harbinger assumes control of it? Just like Sovereign assumes control of Saren. Then after that, it yaps on and on: "Focus on Shepard," "This hurts you Shepard," Since Harbinger and the Ur-Didact are both voiced by Keith Szarabajka, there's some Harbinger references to things the Didact does or says. I love that, and any memes about assuming direct control.

Sometimes I wish there was more interaction between Shepard and Harbinger, seeing that it's the largest and leads all the other Reapers. That's why I like at the end of the Arrival DLC, you get to talk to Harbinger. It's a short conversation that I wish was much longer, but obviously it wasn't the time and place if an asteroid is about to collide with a mass relay! I've always saved that DLC for last since it's closely connected to the third game, plus when you talk to Harbinger in the end, you talk to it directly instead of through the Collector General. It just makes the brief interaction more epic.

Another epic moment would be, you know how Harbinger releases control of the Collector General just as the base is about to explode? I feel like at that moment, the General realizes what it once was just before it dies. I don't know, it just looks like a powerful moment. Did you ever feel the same way?

Okay, I think this ramble is totally disorganized but there's one more praiseworthy thing I want to mention. I love the music in this game, especially during the suicide mission from when you go through the Omega 4 relay, all the way to when the Normandy escapes the base just as it blows.

Well, that ramble went longer than I thought, so up next will be the third game, and then after that I'll share my thoughts on the DLCs that I have played.

Closing this off with my favorite Harbinger quote: "Human, you've changed nothing. Your species has the attention of those infinitely greater. That which you as Reapers are your salvation through destruction."

-Emily

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