Mass Effect 2 Final Mission Flowchart
By - Halfgnomen
Always knew there were a lot of moving parts to this but to see it all arrayed like that is crazy.
Its fucken wild man, it really shows Bioware's talent.
I didn't even know the tech expert could still die even if you get all the gates open for them depending on the loyalty of the second squad leader.
Mine did, my only casualty.
Great chart though very slightly wrong. You can complete Legion's loyalty mission without getting any crew killed.
You can actually complete one more loyalty mission too provided you do Legions last. I always save Tali's loyalty mission until after I get Legion so I can take him. Once you get Legion you can do Tali's and than Legions and no one dies.
It’s not worded great, but it’s how many missions after the crew is kidnapped, not how many after the derelict reaper mission. There’s a variable timer after that mission depending on how many loyalty/recruitment missions you have left
So if I do everything except the reaper IFF, then get legion and do his loyalty mission, I can still save everyone? I already did tali's loyalty mission and only have Jack's and a few side missions but want to save everyone, am I screwed already?
Once you do the reaper IFF mission you're on a "timer" similar to how the collector ship mission automatically pops up a few missions after horizon. I think it's 4 if you have more than that, or when you complete all available missions if you have less. So you can do everything available, do the iff mission, do legion's loyalty mission, then since you have no other missions available the next time you interact with the galaxy map you'll start the abduction scene. One thing to note that if you do things this way you must hug the wall when going from the conference room to the elevator after finishing the iff mission. You've technically already completed all available missions (you haven't accepted legion's loyalty mission yet) and if you get too close to the galaxy map you risk triggering the abduction sequence. The easiest way to avoid this is to simply leave a mission unfinished, such as tali's loyalty mission.
The checklist to save everyone is:
1. have 3 critical normandy upgrades
2. go through omega 4 asap
3. choose the right loyal people for the right tasks
4. the team holding the line has a high enough average score
I'm pretty sure you don't need everybody's loyalty, but it makes things easier. Also not sure if completing loyalty before/after suicide mission affects events in me3.
You can get loyalty after the suicide mission. When I was playing the 360 version to finish the achievements for 2 and 3, I couldn't keep both Jack and Miranda loyal because I needed the extra combat boost to help with the insanity difficulty. After the suicide mission, I did a respec and took the 100% boost to paragon and renegade scores, which gave me enough charisma to recover Jack's loyalty (because I wanted it for the ME 3 import).
You have two missions available after the reaper iff before you get boarded
Its kinda crazy how many layers there are to it. I actually nailed it on my very first try in the original release and did it with no deaths.
Pretty strange how at the end of it all Thane is the only squadmate who isn't specificially qualified for any role.
Yeah, it’s kinda funny. Not much use for an assassin versus relentless cannon fodder. He had Warp though, and that’s all that mattered to me on Insanity lol
I look at it as a mission with such low survival odds, you can always use another gun.
It was weird, I did everything perfect, everyone loyal, and I selected Grunt to escort crew and Mordin died, I had Mordin escort and everything turned out okay
The average combat value of your team holding the line was too low with Grunt back at the Normandy
At the final decision before you go take on the final boss, you have to leave 2 *loyal* soldier classes behind. Grunt, Zaeed or Garrus (Garrus counts as a soldier even tho he’s technically an infiltrator)
Even then if anyone isn’t loyal there’s still a big chance they’ll die after the final boss
Still feel bad that Mordin and Thane don't get a chance to actually showcase their abilities for the final mission. I mean at least Mordin was an essential recruit to unlock upgrades but Thane got real shafted by not getting an actual role he excels in for the suicide mission.
That flow chart has been very useful for me, and I can't recall anytime it's been wrong. In my first playhtrough after the release of LE I followed the flow chart to get specific characters killed off and others survive, and it worked just like before. However, looking at others playing I wonder if there are some factors that the flow chart doesn't take into cosinderation. In this infamous video: [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pRHhdc53Od8](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pRHhdc53Od8) Mordin and Zaeed hold the line. According to the flow chart, Zaeed should survive, but they both died.
This is no longer accurate for LE from what BioWare said in interviews.
Really? Did they put anymore info about it?
Nope. They just said they adjusted conditions to make it less unintentionally strict. They also said "and the Suicide Mission".
I never understood the "hold the line" math. All I know is: don't bring Grunt, Garrus or Zaeed to the final fight; you may bring anyone else.
The idea behind it is, that they are swarmed by enemies and higher weapon damage is better in this situation than biotics or technics. But yeah, don't know why it's calculated like this when we have seen many times before that (especially) biotics can cause a lot of damage.
I look at as, Garrus fought off 3 merc groups by himself for a day, Zaeed tended to be the sole survivor of all his mission and was stubborn enough to survive getting shot in the head, and Grunt is a krogan(speaks for itself) so that's how I know who to leave holding the line.
And Jack pretty much killed half of a cerberus facility when she was a kid. But she is still not considered a top pick here. Samara is a 1.000 years old warrior, also with outstanding biotics.
Yes I see why Garrus, Grunt and Zaeed are top picks here. But I would count Samara and Jack also to them when it comes to survivability in a battle. Especially Jack is strange because BioWare put her in the lowest ranking group.
And if not for their kill rating, then for the "chaos" factor.
That partially why the system is a little flawed. Personally Samara should probably be a 3, but 3 isn't a number assigned to survivability,(it's probably partially to do with Samara can be swapped with Morinth) unless the 4s are unloyal.
Always wondered why Mordin who was STG only gets a 1 too. Guess it’s discounting the fact he was more scientist than soldier but still.
Its been a long time since I beat ME2, can someone remind me how the Hold the line numbers work?
Math answer: follow the flow chart to get combat strengths of your non-party crew members minus the one sent to escort Normandy crew. Add them all up and divide to get the average. If the average is greater than 2 then everyone will be ok.
Practical answer: Make sure everyone is loyal, send Mordin, Tali, Kasumi or Jack as the crew escort, and only take one of Grunt, Zaeed, or Garrus in your party for the final fight.
Nah don't even take Grunt, Zaeed or Garrus unless you need the beef. You leave those three behind you're almost guaranteed to have everyone survive.
Yeah that’s the easiest way but I know a lot of people just can’t be separated from Garrus.
That's fair Garrus is best husbando/bromance.
I was shocked when I learned that the quest for saving the crew was time sensitive. SHOCKED.
Imagine me, all happy and glowing with my first-try No One Left Behind achievement, seeing this random youtube video explaining that no, saving only Dr. Chakwas isn't exactly the way that mission was supposed to go.
Mass Effect 2 was the first game that punished me for being a collectionist.
I mean some would argue a true collectionist or completionist prioritizes side quests over main storyline missions so you’d have all the loyalty/side missions except Legion done before starting the IFF mission. Most completionists probably didn’t realize crew members could die.
Honestly the squad death scenes are some of the most powerful in all of gaming and from a story point of view, everyone surviving the suicide mission that’s been hyped since the beginning of the game falls kind of flat.
But people expect a “right” way that works out if you put in the effort and I can’t blame them, personally I can never bring myself to not save everyone. Everyone owes it to themselves to watch a compilation video of all the squad deaths though.
Honestly the amount of effort and thought that you have to go through to get everyone to live makes the "everyone survives" ending that much better when you first get it right.
I don't necessarily agree that everyone surviving the suicide mission is a flat ending, ending the mission without any pointless and preventable deaths gave me a huge feeling of accomplishment. But as you said, there's no actual "right way" to approach this game, and you're right on that for sure
Such a ridiculously convoluted way they force you to play if you want the best outcome, its so easy to fuck up if you arent following a guide like this, fuck i hate me2.
Ya it's actually very straightforward. Upgrade the normandy get your crew loyal and don't tell them to do tasks they don't know how to do
It’s intended to be difficult. It’s supposed to be a suicide mission. I think the goal was for a first time player going in blind to lose a few squad mates to really drive home how deadly the collectors are supposed to be.
outside of the ship upgrades, this is pretty natural stuff. if you go into it with squad mates who aren’t loyal or you make the wrong assignments it’s on you. plus the game tells you the whole time the odds of survival are low, it should be hard to get the full team to survive
The only problem I have with this are the loyalty missions. Well, problem is maybe too hard of an word for it. It's just optional side stuff you are happy to do during your first playthrough, when everything is new and shiny. But I don't see myself enjoying some of the missions a second time as well.
But the final mission itself is relatively straight forward and there is no guide needed for most things. I still don't get why Miranda can't hold the biotic barrier up even if she is loyal, but oh well... I don't like her that much anyways and didn't pick her for anything important.
The loyalty missions are like half the game though. There’s entire hub planets like Tuchanka that you miss if you don’t do any of them. And they aren’t fetch quests either, they are well written with the same core gameplay as the main missions.
If you strip down all character based missions, namely recruitment and loyalty, Mass Effect 2 has 5 missions that actually have to do with the main story: Freedom’s Progress, Horizon, Collector Ship, Reaper IFF, Omega 4 Relay. That’s not a lot of gameplay devoted to the actual story. And yet Mass Effect 2 is widely regarded as the best in the Trilogy and one of the best RPGs ever. Most people will say the character stuff is what makes Mass Effect 2 so great and loyalty missions are a big part of that.
Honestly the intended way to play through is probably not to do all loyalty missions but only the ones of your favorite crew members. You’ll lose a couple of crew in the suicide mission, hopefully some of the not so favorite ones you didn’t invest in, and come away with a sense that the mission actually was dangerous but you and your main besties got through.
Yes, true. They are primary quests without being mandatory. But I will still ignore some of them next time. Especially of characters I just don't like that much.
I love ME2 but this is also my biggest criticisms of the game. Because recruitment+loyalty missions make up well over 50% of the game, it just ends up feeling like Side Quests: The Video Game. TIM talks about how the Collectors are a threat to the galaxy and we’re running out of time, but Shepard goes off and solves someone’s daddy issues on a remote planet, or helps a thief get revenge on a rich dude.
ME2 doesn’t really do anything to advance the Reaper plot sadly. BioWare has said they thought of the idea behind the suicide mission first, then built the game around that so I guess that’s the reasoning. You’re last paragraph is spot on I think, and during my renegade playthrough that’s probably what I’ll do.
Don’t get me wrong, I love ME2 as I love all the games, that’s just my 2 cents.
You are the only person I have EVER seen say they hate Mass Effect 2 and I genuinely cannot understand why.
The game rewards you for participating in it to the fullest extent. It rewards you for immersing yourself and ensuring the best possible outcome for a mission that should be SUICIDE. The entire **POINT** of the game is going up against impossible odds but being so well prepared that you succeed. It takes WORK to accomplish that. And realistically even the silliest thing in ME2 like planet scanning work towards that goal. It’s brilliant game design and it’s a shame you chose not to engage with it.
On top of that, the choices to have your team survive are pretty fucking simple. The only ones that even REMOTELY challenge your critical thinking skills are who should lead the fire teams and even then, who are you gonna pick? Jack, who can’t even hold a conversation much less lead a team, or Garrus, who led the most successful anti-criminal organization on Omega?
Who are you gonna pick for the vents? Jacob, who doesn’t even have the most basic understanding about hacking, or Legion A LITERAL infiltration AI?
Who holds the barrier? Miranda, who can throw some dudes, or Samara, an Asari Justiciar who’s literally 7-8 CENTURIES old and has been honing her biotics into a scalpel for the last 400 years?
As for loyalty, they drill it into your head at every turn that each character needs help finishing their outstanding business so they can focus all of their efforts on the Suicide Mission.
If you prepare properly and listen to what the game is telling you, it’s actually incredibly easy to save everyone.