Mass Effect 2 Savegame Scandal/Salvation

I tried to post this yesterday, but the blog’s back end mysteriously ate all my words so I gave up in a huff. I believe it to be the machinations of Loki, the Norse trickster god, and villain of children’s picturebook Thor #606, written by Karen Gillan and on sale now in all good Early Learning Centres. Anyway – like half the world I’ve been making first inroads into Mass Effect 2 this week. As I played the first game on -hisssss! – 360 rather than PC, I was resigned to not being able to import my old character. But Bioware mentioned there’d be a KOTOR 2-esque mechanic in which a few conversational choices established what I’d done in ME1 and made ME2’s status quo broadly reflect it.

They changed their minds. At the point where I’m pretty sure this conversation would have happened (an interview to check the [this word is spoiler-censored] Shepherd’s got all their marbles), I was instead simply told what had happened. It wasn’t what had happened. ME1 spoilers below, so skip right to the end if you’ve not finished that yet.

Wrex and Ashely were dead. The council was dead. That’s not what I’d done. I wasn’t a happy space bunny. Instead of any choice system, the game had just presumed I’d made certain decisions, and ones that, broadly, made me a bit of a bastard. Perhaps that’s best in terms of simply getting on with the game for people who didn’t play/finish ME1, but it’s a nasty thing to do to loyalists who couldn’t access their old saves for one reason or another.

I played through an hour or so more, but my heart wasn’t in it. Particularly, I wanted big’n’mopey alien bruiser Wrex in my party, but in this enforced new reality that wasn’t possible. Fortunately, during a casual browse of our forums I spotted Alexander Norris’ link to the ME Savegame Repository. Which is what it sounds like – a growing collection of saves from the first game, ready for importing into ME2. Pretty much any Shepherd derivation you can think of is in there – paragon, renegade, mixed, male, female, romanced Kaiden, romanced Ashley, romanced Liara, romanced no-one (that’s me – I find videogame sex/snogging scenes so ludicrous and unconvincing that it can be hard to take the game seriously after seeing one, so generally avoid them), killed Wrex, saved Wrex, killed the council, saved the council, and dozens of similar decisions.

I probably couldn’t find an exact match, but close enough to make ME2’s reality match up with how I’d left off in ME1. It worked like a charm – and ME2 still gave me the option to alter appearance and class, so I wasn’t lumped with someone I didn’t like the look of. I started the game over (the only frustration being that I wasn’t allowed to skip the very lengthy introduction), and now I’m much happier with my Shepherdess.

If you didn’t play ME1 and intend to play ME2, it’s worth observing that importing a high-level ME1 savegame grants you a ton of cash and XP bonuses. I’m not entirely sure how fair this is – it meant my character was pretty much instantly level 4. I didn’t feel overpowered, but I suspect the clean slate may be a better option for ME newcomers.

Anyway, have a browse of the repository, and even submit your own save to it, if you think it covers a Shepherd not already in there.



  1. poop says:

    dave tosser noooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

  2. qrter says:

    Ah yes, Richard Cobbett has been weeping about this on his Twitter. Being able to select important ME1 choices used to be part of an earlier ME2 build, but BioWare chose to remove it. A strange decision.

    Myself, I’ve been hitting the use-key-bug that quite a lot of people on PC have been having problems with – the blue use circle just won’t show up, or flicker, which means you’ll have to mash the space bar (which is especially fun if what you’re trying to ‘use’ is an NPC and would initiate a conversation, making you automatically select the first convo option you’d normally come across).

    • Richard says:

      It’s not just that it doesn’t let you do it, it’s that there’s a conversation at the start built around “Let’s check your memories” which would be perfect for KOTOR 2 style “Here’s what happened…” dialogue options. Instead, not only was I informed that I’d left Ashley to die instead of Kaiden (and later, made Udina the head of the galaxy instead of Anderson – nnngh!) I had a couple of new characters in my face, demanding I justify my decision to do the stupid things I had not in fact done.

      The game is great so far. But I remain very Irked about the decisions Bioware made in my name, not least because the first thing you’re told is how important it is for your boss to have the right Shephard.

    • Rinox says:

      Yes it appears to have been only part of an early build. The guys over at Penny Arcade mentioned this too.

      What a brilliant game so far btw. The weird graphical glitch that makes my horrible facial scars glow in some scenes is pretty disturbing, though.

    • Alexander Norris says:

      My inside sources also confirmed that the memory test thing used to lead to a Q&A session about Shepard’s choices in the first game. Can’t possibly fathom why it was removed, though.

      Anyway, woo, RPS front page mention. I feel giddy. *swoon*

    • qrter says:

      I too wonder why they removed the option, regardless of how they’d have presented it. If you’re making such a hullabaloo about how previous characters are importable, it would seem logical to have some kind of back-up system.

    • Snidely says:

      Rinox: Those glowing scars aren’t a glitch.

    • Rinox says:

      Thanks…I considered that to be an option but seeing as no one has so much as mentioned them in the first hour or so I supposed they were a glitch. Seriously though, you’d think Shepard would freak out when he looks into the mirror…of which he has plenty in his new fancy spaceship loft, one would imagine.

    • TheSombreroKid says:

      i’m not sure if the glowing scars are a glitch or not but they’re not in the gameplay videos and are pretty weird.

      i’m pretty sure the only reason they would’ve removed it is because it didn’t work properly.

    • invisiblejesus says:

      The glowing scars are definitely not a glitch. They reflect your paragon/renegade status, kind of like how making dark side choices made you look messed up in KOTOR; they’ll become less pronounced the more you go paragon, and glow more red and weird the more you go renegade. Your eyes can glow red if you go heavily renegade, as well. There are some videos on YouTube showing it, and the doctor sends you a message about it after a bit. If you don’t like it, you can have them removed completely through some tech thingie after the doctor sends you the message.

    • TheSombreroKid says:

      it’s not that, as a renegade you have scars with slight glows underneath, which looks quite natural, as a glitched paragon, i’ve got little seams on my face with brightly glowing redness under it, it’s definitly wrong esp after seeing how it’s supposed to look.

      p.s. i’ve just about maxed out my paragon bar and they’re still there, sometimes.

    • KindredPhantom says:

      @Alexander Norris

      Who gave you the link to the Mass Effect save game repository ?

    • Psychopomp says:

      *raises hand*


    • KindredPhantom says:

      Just curious since i have seen it posted a few places, most notably Penny Arcade mentioned it.

    • Alexander Norris says:

      Actually, it wasn’t you, ‘pomp. A uni friend of mine got it from the SA thread it originated in and then gave it to me on Facebook.

      Still, I’m glad to know I did my part in disseminating it over the Internet.

  3. skalpadda says:

    Am I the only one who’s completely bewildered by mister Tosser?

    • Meat Circus says:

      Bewilderment is the correct response.

      MEER: No pity. You made your own console-shaped bed, now lie in it. I can understand why Bioware changed their mind: the decisions you make have import only because you’ve experienced the storyline. Asking newcomers to make decisions about a game they haven’t played, in a Universe they probably don’t know, will just seem baffling and fatuous.

      Go and download a save game if you’re that bothered.

    • Alexander Norris says:

      By that logic, just including the option to skip the memory test would have been more than enough. That way, new players don’t have to sit through it and make choices that don’t matter to them, and people who’ve lost their ME1 save one way or another get the option to get an approximation of their Shepard back. Best of both worlds.

  4. MarkSide says:

    I’m totally with you on the awkwardness of in-game romantic relationships. Unfortunately, I’m too nice for my own good and my female Shepherd inadvertently led Karth on (I just wanted to be friends!). In the end I realised that the only way out of the relationship was to, um, blow up a planet. Oops.

    • MarkSide says:

      Lolz. I mean Kaiden. Karth was in Kotor, right? And with that moustache, I could never refuse him…

    • Rich says:

      That’s typical intimacy issues, that is.
      The slightest sign of someone getting interested in you and you blow up the planet they’re standing on. Honestly, women!

    • skalpadda says:

      He had the same voice actor, yes.

    • Gnarl says:


      Don’t worry, inadvertently falling into a relationship by being a bit nice to someone is a feature they kept in for the sequel.

    • Xercies says:

      I tried to be nice to Tali but she wouldn’t accept my love…why Tali..why

    • Kenny says:

      Because you’re a disease ridden monkey and she has no immune system

    • Psychopomp says:

      Most of the scenes in ME2 are actually pretty damn d’aw, even paragon-path Jack.

      Minor Tali related spoiler: hsgfdhgtheydon’tletyouseeherface!Thecamerapansawayasthemaskistakenoff :(

      End spoilers

  5. Alex Bakke says:

    I wonder if this is the canon that they’re heading for – that is, everything’s fucked up, and I’m guessing that Shepherd will die at some point, too.

    • Meat Circus says:

      The trailers have mentioned several times that Sheperd *may* die in Mass Effect 2, depending on how well you manage the relationships with your team.

    • Alex Bakke says:

      No, what I meant was that due to the fact that Bioware are viewing the council dead, and so on, as canon, that they may choose to reflect a similarly ‘bad’ ending in the third, by treating Shepherd dying as canon.

    • Meat Circus says:

      I would guess so. If you allow Sheperd to die at the end of Mass Effect 2, he’d better not be bloody playable in Mass Effect 3. :)

    • Alexander Norris says:

      They’ve already stated that if your Shepard dies in ME2, you just play with a different Shepard in ME3, so the canon ending can’t be his death.

    • TheSombreroKid says:

      @Alexander Norris
      what’s the point in that! that removes all consequence from the desicion and makes it just like all the other deaths you could have in the game, i mean i can die in the game with absolutly no consequences at any point just by putting my shotgun under my chin!

    • Alexander Norris says:

      @TheSombreroKid: Shepard’s death in ME2 is supposed to be a “bad end” as opposed to something that would develop in canon. From what they’ve said (and that’s the only thing I know about it, since I haven’t finished the game), it should only happen if you don’t take the time to do any sidequests or upgrade any of your ship, and is the result of tackling the endgame woefully unprepared. Or so I’ve heard, anyway.

    • Optimaximal says:

      They’ve already stated that if your Shepard dies in ME2, you just play with a different Shepard in ME3, so the canon ending can’t be his death.

      I always interpreted it as ‘we are planning to introduce another character if he/she dies’… BW seem pretty adamant to push the ‘Mass Effect is your game’ ideal.

      Granted, this ‘other’ character might well be a Raiden/MGS2 scenario where it’s all revealed to be a hoax/coverup/something else, but that’s for Bioware to think up.

    • jalf says:

      They’ve said several times that the Mass Effect *trilogy* is about Shepard. He/she will be there in the third game. If you die in ME2, it won’t be canonical.

      (They’ve also hinted that after the trilogy, they’ll still want to expand the ME universe “beyond Shepard’s story”

  6. Rich says:

    Could this be the end of Dave Tosser?

    Also, bad show. It wouldn’t have been too hard to implement a scene like the one you were hoping for. I personally assumed something like the history choices you could make at the beginning of ME1.

    I think on Eurogamer someone from BioWare mistaking said there’d be a series of check boxes, but that just turned out to be part of the test version he was using. This does show that the game basically uses toggle switches anyway. So locking us in to one choice is pretty silly.

  7. Lord Bigglesworth says:

    Screw the “council”, let them rot, those bastards are anti-human anyway. I did it, and I would do it again.

    My savegame looks like this.

    1. Wrex alive
    2. Kaiden dead
    3. Porked Ashley
    4. Council dead.
    5. Paragon 98%

  8. Meat Circus says:

    Alec Meer let the council *live*?


    Also, I done the mind-sex with Liara, and thought the whole rigmarole was quite well-handled. She was pretty Adept (hur) for a brain-virgin though.

  9. Anonymous Coward says:

    Bioware’s had some PR problems lately. This and the whole Dragon Age DLC mess… oh, and the ME2 collector’s edition got delayed to more than a week after the release date in large parts of Europe due to quantum interference in the DVD presses caused by solar flares. That’s my explanation, since Bioware hasn’t said anything about it:

    link to

    They really need to hire a better PR department.

  10. Chizu says:

    I only just finished ME1 the night before ME2 unlocked on steam, after finally getting a pc that did the first game justice and wasn’t all laggy.

    As a result I did pratically no side missions at all. was only lvl 37 at the end.
    That made me start as lvl 2 in ME2
    Brought over 190 paragon points
    8 Renegade
    Wrex alive
    Kaiden dead
    No sexxing.
    Council alive
    Anderson on the Council

    • Lord Bigglesworth says:

      For crying out loud !!! Why did you saved the council ?!

      Pff, liberals >:|

    • plugmonkey says:

      My sentiments exactly. Risk the galaxy to save a bunch of whining bureaucrats who’d been making my life hell? Oooh, I had to think about that one!

      Also Wrex alive, Ashley dead (she was a soldier, damn it, it was her job!), mixed paragon/renegade and no space boffing. Partly because it’s just a bit cringeworthy in a game, and partly because both of the options were really bloody annoying and, frankly, Shepard could do better.

    • autogunner says:

      WHy did you not save the council?? christ they are/were the governing body of an intergalactic democracy that humans are desparately trying to get involved with, and you chose to save a couple of human soldiers and not the ruling body of a galaxy?

      for shame sir

    • plugmonkey says:

      I had my orders. I had a mission. That mission was to stop Sovereign.

      I’m sure other people had orders to safeguard the Council.

      They were not my concern.


  11. Jacques says:

    Bioware should be flogged for every single disgusting cutscene and “romance option” they’ve put in their games since Jade Empire.
    If I want to see people have sex, I’ll watch some porn, or, you know, go have fun with the girlfriend. Not watch an embarrassing cutscene of two clothed CG characters awkwardly grinding against one another.

    Stuff like that is so infantile. Get rid of it.

    /e too much swearing.

    • TheSombreroKid says:

      i think the idea is it’s optional, that’s the power of games!

    • Lilliput King says:

      Really? By the same logic, do you reject sex in all media and literature?

      Seems a little ridiculous, to me.

      “Fuck Trainspotting. If I wanted to see people taking drugs I would… take some drugs?”

      PS: was going to back this up with an example related to sex in media but I couldn’t actually think of any examples that haven’t, in fact, been gratuitous and pointless. Anyone?

    • Klaus says:

      Because blasting robots and lizard/reptile people with a flamethrower (what I’m doing now) or any weapon mind you, is not as infantile as optional cgi sex.

      Do you get maturity points for lambasting game sex somewhere.

    • Jacques says:

      Don’t you guys ever just get embarrassed by the tackiness of the whole video game sex thing?

      I’ve got no problem with sex in media if it’s done right, but the way Bioware does it is simply embarrassing to watch.

      have you ever had that feeling when you watch something on television and you just have to switch the channel because what’s going on is so embarrassing it hurts? That’s what happens to me with the “sex” in Bioware’s games.

      It’s probably just because the animations aren’t done right and it’s very deep in the uncanny valley that I get disgusted by it.

    • Klaus says:

      I can’t say I was embarrassed, but I was greatly amused by the Dragon Age scenes. That was sort of uncanny valley for me. But I don’t know how I’m supposed to feel about those scenes anyway. Am I suppose to enjoy it? Be aroused or something?

      I always resort to chuckling like a 7 year old boy shouting ‘penis!’

    • Kanamit says:

      From what I’ve seen, most of ME2 sex scenes aren’t nearly as tacky as ME1’s (and Dragon Age’s bizarre underwear rub, of course).

    • Lilliput King says:

      I’ve got no problem with sex in media if it’s done right, but the way Bioware does it is simply embarrassing to watch.

      Agreed. Your initial response was just a bit childish, is all.

      Erm. I think they could probably add something, one of these days. As they are, it’s awkward for everyone, and it makes our hobby look pretty crappy.

      EDIT: Dragon Age’s were the worst sex scenes ever produced, srsly guys.

    • Jacques says:

      @Liliput King

      I know, I’ve got a habit of not phrasing things very well.

      I wonder what’s going through Bioware’s employees head’s when they’re making these cutscenes. They surely can’t be so far removed from the reality of sex that they actually think that sort of portrayal is ok.

    • Dean says:

      Oh I dunno, I think the stilted, awkward, stupid looking Bioware sex is actually a lot closer to the real thing than any Hollywood sex scene or porn film. Honestly, we’ve all been in that place where we’re having sex then sort of step back out of ourselves and realise how patently ridiculous it is.

    • Optimaximal says:

      If I want to see people have sex, I’ll watch some porn, or, you know, go have fun with the girlfriend.

      Hmmm… Interesting how when sex enters the mind, you think of porn before the bedroom.

      Are you under 18?

    • Jacques says:

      Notice how I said “If I want to see people have sex”.
      I’m 21.

    • Nalano says:

      So what you’re saying is you want to see someone else with your girlfriend?

  12. Premium User Badge

    mickiscoole says:

    One decision I made in the first game doesn’t seem to have carried over to the second game.
    For those interested it was POSSIBLESPOILYSPOILERSConrad Verner, it seems to think I did the intimidate option, but I did the charm option ENDPOSSIBLESPOILYSPOILERS

    • Alexander Norris says:

      Possibly a bug, as I’ve heard that there are both Paragon and Renegade options for “that bit.”

      The Renegade option is a lot less stupid than the Paragon one, in any case.

    • TheSombreroKid says:

      i know what you mean he called me a dick even thouhg i was nice to him, i thought it was just me.

  13. Nalano says:

    Sounds like an implicit reward for buying (and playing through) the first game. Well, were it not for the savegame exchange.

    I like ME2 a lot. Imported my sole ME1 character (which I think I got to level 20-something through a savegame+) and was amazed by just how many things ME2 picked up from the “canon” character:

    That it knew that the council was saved, Anderson chosen councilor, Wrex lived, Ashley died and Kaidan romanced, I expected. That it knew that Finch lived, Toombs died, and a whole host of minor things that would give away spoilers, I didn’t.

    • James G says:

      Oh good, I’m very glad to hear that. I had been a bit worried when I started the game last night and early indications were suggesting that only the endgame biggies were being picked up on. Glad to here a few more minor decisions hold sway as well.

  14. Dante says:

    It seems like this rumour got around because Bioware were able to manually set decisions in testing, and someone thought this was going to be the case in retail.

    Exactly why they assumed you made all the arsehole choices is uncertain though, I mean did anyone actually pick Udina over Anderson?

    • Rinox says:

      I did. Anderson was weak and inexperienced. Udina was an asshole, but the right man for the job.

      In Jean-Luc Shepard’s mind anyway.

    • Meat Circus says:

      I was greatly annoyed that the opportunity to shoot Udina in his stupid face never presented.

      So I made him King of Space instead, in the vague hope he would turn into a Chancellor Palpatine figure.

    • Klaus says:

      Actually, when I played the game again, for the express purpose of importing, I wondered why I disliked Undina so much. Then I got to the point where he basically backstabs you, along with that smug look on his face and that smarmy “And, I’ll help you!” My wonderment ceased and I knew why I never pick him for the council. More politico nonsense.

    • Dante says:

      You can’t shoot him, but you can get Anderson to punch him in the face.


    • Donkeydeathtasticelastic says:

      Anderson nutted a turian, got shot and still did what he had to.

      What has Udina done?

      Nothing, I tell you.

  15. Real Horrorshow says:

    The only way around this is to download save games. Luckily I bumped into a site that has a bunch of them with all the choices listed. Don’t worry about the face because you have an option to change it.

    link to

  16. Tom OBedlam says:

    What a good idea, I was a bit narked that I wouldn’t be able to use my Shepherd because I played on 360. Good job, internets.

  17. Bobsy says:

    I’m now regretting not giving my Shepard the first name “German”.

  18. Koozer says:

    Wait, I started a fresh game in ME2 and was told Kaidan and the Council died. Which is exactly what I chose in ME1. On an unused, formatted hard drive.

    • Klaus says:

      I believe Kaiden is dead if you’re a male Shepard and Ashley for a female Shepard.

    • Dean says:

      The Council always die but I think the Ashley/Kaiden choice is based on if you start a new male or female Shephard. So male Shep = dead Kaiden, female Shep = dead Ashley. I think.

    • Jesse says:

      Isn’t that actually the least likely choice of the two? If you’re a guy, there’s a decent chance you picked Ashley, so why pick her to die?

      It’s the replayabilty that suffers. Think about it. Hey? Next time you want to play through, plug in some new past decisions and away you go. See how the other side lives. Now you don’t get that choice. What the hell, man? PATCH IT IN, YOU FOOLS! THE INTERNET HAS SPOKEN! There is no good rationalization for this. I’d love to hear whatever stupid argument someone on the dev team made for this.

  19. Sarlix says:

    Anyone know if ME2 is better optimized for the PC version than the first one was?


    What the heck is going on with Mr Tosser today? he has varicose veins coming out of his forehead for christ sake!. Oh the humanity.

    • -Spooky- says:

      *mhm* Unreal 3 Engine, tweak it around in the cfg. Like all U3E games..

      link to

    • invisiblejesus says:


      Yes, it is. Much. In fact, I’d kill for a patch updating ME1 with ME2 tech. It’s much smoother and looks much better. Controls are a little different, but on balance I’d say they’re quite a bit better. I’m annoyed at not being able to turn off mouse smoothing, but it’s not nearly as bad as in some UE3 games.

    • Sarlix says:

      Thanks that’s good to know :)

  20. Carra says:

    It’s indeed frustrating. I somehow lost my savegame during a previous reset. And I searched my harddisks for an hour just to find them.

    So you play for an hour or two only to notice that Ashley is dead. I didn’t kill her!

    At least they should have given us the option to choose which characters we killed or not. It just feels wrong this way. Maybe I’ll go ahead and restart with one of those save games.

  21. Dave says:

    I personally like how porn is your first option.

    • Dave says:

      Your reply button is still the useless piece of buttocks it always was.
      Fine, I’ll make an account then!

  22. -Spooky- says:

    I rush ME1 (never finished the 3rd person shooter *bg*) in the moment, because reading about the import feature. It´s hard to be always renegade.. *hrhr*

  23. Koozer says:

    How long does the collective mind reckon it would take to power through the Mass Effect 1 story from beginning to the end, ignoring anything optional?

    • ChainsawHands says:

      It’s about 20 hours, I think. When it first came out on the xbox a friend and I did it in a weekend, probably a long Friday night then all of Saturday. We missed out on a fair bit of subquesting and such, and that was before the extra DLC bit was out, but you can do it in a weekend if you’re sufficiently determined.

    • Klaus says:

      It took me about 12 hours, though I did do some side quests. At least, I completed them if I was in the area. Like completing the quest with that Indian fellow when I came down the steps. I ignored things that required me to go planet hopping.

  24. MinisterofDOOM says:

    I played ME1 on the PC but didn’t finish it. I got close, though. I simply started a new Shepard in ME2 and was just peachy-keen and happy with that until I read this post and remembered how WRONG the stock ME2 fiction is. Now I need to finish ME1 (which I’m sure was Bioware’s goal). Anderson should be on the throne, the Council can rot, and Wrex isn’t dead! I sexed no one as I was too busy killing things.

  25. Tei says:

    I killed the council… correction, I made some dificult decisions, that result on the dead of the council, but the victory against a ultimate extermination of all the galaxy.
    Now, with ME2, i manually imported my character into ME2. I am playing how the game is supposed to be. There has been some npc dialog about who is in command, and I have asked Ukira (or something like that) the other opcion is Anderson … I admit that after two years I don’t remenber who is who.

    Tali, I like it, I understand his people. The geth, I kind of undertand then toow. The harvester, I understand then. Everyone else have his own conexiones and reasons, I am walking slow, talking to everyone, and making the boss decissions. Also opening all the box and secrets.
    I am roleplaying Honor Harrington in ME2, is the only thing that make sense. Options? I spit on your options. a true official will do what I did.

    • Rinox says:

      Reading Tei’s posts is like leafing through Finnegan’s Wake. Love it.

    • Rich says:

      Long ago I discovered that you could import an English dictionary into firefox, so that it will check your spelling as you type. Since that day, I’ve never looked back.

      Honestly, you should try it.

    • Meat Circus says:

      riverrun, past Eve and Adam’s, through swerve of shore and bend of Tei.

    • Psychopomp says:


      Do not ruin this for us.

  26. Diogo Ribeiro says:

    So, erm, what exactly seems to cross over into, and is decided for us in ME2? >_<

  27. 1nightstand says:

    I have another kind of complaint: importing my Shepard, I had imported the ol’ face pop-up textures effect. Feels like home now.

    A brand new Shepard didn’t have that glitch.

    I kid you not.

  28. oceanclub says:

    While copying files from my old XP installation last night, I was delighted to find my old Mass Effects saves; I was sure I’d deleted them when I uninstalled the game.

    Just one question – does ME2 have interesting side quests, or are they still variations of drive-the-Big-Trak-around-the-sandpit?


    • Rich says:

      From what I’ve read, yes. Also, no tank this time.

      Good review: link to

    • invisiblejesus says:

      Well fuck. I miss the Mako already. I’d buy a full game just about kicking ass in that thing. Granted, hopefully one with more meaty and interesting quests than the ME1 side quests, but still. I did love my bouncy truck.

  29. Azhrarn says:

    The odd thing is, you do get the “what happened” questionaire if you import a character…. I wonder if you can change history that way. Would be silly if you could, and the new game didn’t allow that option…

  30. somnolentsurfer says:

    Wow. Glad I still have my save. I’d forgotten how ugly my Shepard was though. From the front, when you have the option to change him, he looks fine. But in profile? Oh my God, he looks like some kind of freekazoid monster,

    Mainly though, I’m quite disappointed about all the stuff I’m being forced into that my Shepard would never have done. Working for Cerberus? And happily keeps on doing when they give you a ship and send you on your merry way? First thing I’m doing when I get back into the game later is going to see Anderson. And if I don’t get the opportunity to punch Illusive Man in face some time soon I’ll be quite disappointed.

    Oh, and, Illusive Man? Really? Is that the best you could do? It’s worse than Unobtainium.

    • Lilliput King says:

      I was rocking the half-moon face first play through.

      Didn’t realise until I was too far in and couldn’t be bothered to start again, but his face was caved in like a cartoon character hit by a football, while his mighty mandible juts out into eternity.

    • James G says:

      Ugh, yes. I’ve had a few of my crew try and claim that ‘Cerberus isn’t as evil as folk make out,’ but then try and use the same bullshit claptrap that several white supremacist groups use when trying to gain respectability. Y’know, the stuff that on one level is sort of true, but fall apart when put into the greater context.

      I’m going to grab the scientist guy first, because then I can get a non-human on the team to piss off the racists and get a few weapons upgrades, then I’m off to Anderson to see if I can get some good out of this whole sorry affair. I’m made sure my Shepard’s casual clothes are the non-Cerberus ones. She’ll be damned if she’s giving them anything more than the minimum.

      Oh, and anyone else find the collectors edition armour hideous? I equipped it because of the decent stats, but think I’m switching back to base armour.

    • Klaus says:

      @ James G

      Good points. I was almost bought in by Cerberus’ bs, especially after the council meeting, which I guess you’re going to see. Garrus and Tali pointed out some things about Cerberus that I didn’t like and I came to. All in all, I don’t think there are any good/evil groups.

      And yes the Collectors armor is ugly, though it’s amusing when someone goes ‘Shepard! It’s YOU!’ while your face is covered or you look like a bug creature.

    • 1nightstand says:

      @ JG & Klaus

      When you say “collector’s armor” do you mean the armor you get if you buy the collector’s edition, or is it, you know.. a collector’s army you can find in a hive?… or both..

    • Klaus says:

      Yes, that’s the one I’m talking about.

      Edit: link to
      This is it, I haven’t been to their hive/base yet so I don’t know what armor pieces you may find in there.

    • James G says:

      Your not far off with ‘both’ actually, as the description on the card that contains the code implies that the armour is also made out of collectors. (Presumably the aliens, not Bioware customers)

    • Kadayi says:

      The Blood Dragon Armour is pretty cack as well. Stats are ok, but the helmet isn’t removable or anything…..

  31. Charles says:

    I’ve been dying to get my hands on Mass Effec 2 but I’ve never played Mass Effect 1. I’ve been getting mixed thoughts on my situation. Some people say go ahead and get it anyways and others tell me tthat I must play ME1 in order to fully enjoy it’s sequel. What do you think I should do?

    – Yourwiseguy

    • invisiblejesus says:

      I’d just go ahead and buy ME1. It has it’s flaws, but it’s a great game overall and it’ll add a lot to your enjoyment of ME2. That, and if it turns out you hate ME1, you’ll probably hate ME2 also, so if that happens you’ll have saved yourself a few dollars.

  32. Klaus says:

    I am slightly annoyed that regardless of going through the concepts of mercy and doing the job right, not fast. Garrus throws it out the window. bah…

    Re: Cerberus. The Illusive Man, I imagine could disable ship if you tried to go AWOL. EDI has locked options that Shepard can’t get to. Plus the council is useless. Cerberus are probably the only ones who can pull off your objective anyway.

    • somnolentsurfer says:

      Yeah, I’ve only got as far just getting the Normandy. I’ve had a brief look around, but not tried to go anywhere yet. I saw there were some locked doors and stuff. And what appears to be a true AI, rather than a VI or whatever they were called in the first game. Another thing my Shepard wouldn’t have been having anything to do with. Grr.

  33. fearghaill says:

    They did give one choice – Udina/Anderson on council wasn’t informed. They asked, and whichever you choose they go along with, as though it wasn’t in a quantum flux until you clicked a dialog option.

    Still, pretty weak. I too went looking for savegames as soon as I saw where the default would put me.

    As for the choices they went with, a Bioware employee that posts in the same forum I do said that they were supposed to be the “path of least resistance” through the first game, i.e. a Shepard who took the easy way out whenever he could.

    • Rinox says:

      Seems to be fueled by a pretty bad understanding of game design and their audience if that’s the real reason. Gamers don’t tend to take the ‘easy’ way out when playing epic space quests, they pretend they’re heroes and do the ‘right’ thing – mostly. It’s like the mini quizzes in women’s mags that women lie on to get the ‘you’re a great friend’ or whatever response to confirm the fantasy that you are indeed special. Assuming that players would do what comes naturally is…unwise.

    • Jesse says:

      Is this supposed to be some kind of punishment for not importing a character? Hell yes, Rinox. I want to be a space hero, dammit.

      I want to keep the decisions I made in my first save game, more or less, but I want to switch to a female Shepard. I agree that the male Shepard’s voice is nothing special, and have heard nothing but good things about the female voice actress. Curse you, Bioware! Maybe I won’t buy it after all. My only option is to play it on the 360, so unfortunately the save game repository isn’t an option for me.

    • somnolentsurfer says:

      Path of least resistance? He’s supposed to be a hero. He shouldn’t just take the easy way out!

    • Klaus says:

      Is this supposed to be some kind of punishment for not importing a character?
      That was my guess when I checked out the new game.

      My first impressions

      Bitch: Interrogate him. NOW!
      Black Dude: Council’s dead. Kaiden is dead, too.
      Shepard: >:(

    • Rinox says:

      @ Jesse

      Haha, be a space hero man! I hope my first post didn’t sound too deriding of that – I was just saying that most people do and as such it’s a strange decision to make them accept many of Jerk Shepard’s decision as canon in part 2.

      (personally I play as a paranoid asshole though…always seem to do so in scifi RPG’s. In Kotor 2 I didn’t trust ANYONE on my ship except for Hk-47 and the R2D2 fella, because they were robots. Maybe Canderous to an extent. But everyone else was out to get me, which proved to be true when they all turned on me at the end as I claimed my mantle of Sith lord)

    • invisiblejesus says:

      I suspect most people who give a shit how their Shepard behaved in ME1 probably actually played ME1.

  34. Delphiki says:

    In the xbox 360 version you can still answer the questions as you wish and thereby make the gamestory reflect your playthrough of ME1. Seems strange to leave this option out of the PC version. What i also found strange was that although I imported my ME1 save i still had to answer all these interview questions. Makes me wonder which of these has priority, is the ME2 universe shapen by my actions in part 1 or by my (perhaps faulty) recollection of them.

  35. Morph says:

    There seems to be many more Paragon save files than Renegade, which surprised me.

    I mean Renegade was ‘I’ll play Shepard like he/she’s totally kick-ass’ and Paragon was ‘I’ll play Shepard like he/she is a big pansy’.

    • Lanster27 says:

      Renegade was more like “I’ll play Shepard like he/she’s totally a prick”. Well at least in ME2.

    • Klaus says:

      Paragon was for me: I’m human first, and soldier second and renegade was the exact opposite. With some extra jerkface thrown in for good measure.

      I’m not surprised there are far more paragons, I wanted to be Wolverine when I was a kid but I now appreciate Captain America much more. Suck it, Wolvie.

    • malkav11 says:

      I played Renegade because I always play the “evil” path in RPGs if I can fairly do so. While in Mass Effect, this was more of a “no nonsense, itchy trigger finger” sort of approach than force choking people like in KOTOR, it does also seem to require taking a rather xenophobic stance. Makes it make total sense that Cerberus might try to recruit me, even though I did shoot up some of their operations.

    • plugmonkey says:

      I trod a fairly neutral path and ended up with more paragon than renegade points just because they seemed to dole them out for basically anything.

      Murder someone in cold blood = Renegade points.

      Don’t murder someone in cold blood = Paragon points!

    • Psychopomp says:

      Renegade Shepard is not a badass. Renegade Shepard is SPACE ASSHOLE!

  36. Lanster27 says:

    Is getting Wrex really that important? Or having Ashley live?

  37. Jakkar says:

    Jumping in with covered eyes, although I’ve little affection for Bioware’s modern fare; Thankye for your respect for antispoilerism – it is appreciated =)

  38. toni says:

    adept – new game:
    wrex dead, kaidan dead, council dead, paragon

    I had my “romance” with MrsPsychopants and I thought it was handled gracefully. it was less Sex than just spending the last night b4 the suicide mission together. I did no quickie with her, I went for the whole: this is a serious relationship (and pissed off Miranda)

    Well, Bioware took the easy way out and started anew. makes sense since they have to explain 30+ hours of backstory to new players. Old characters get ditched or get only small missions (except Tali + Garrus) so they can concentrate on the new stuff.

    Overall plot is pretty simple and boring, all the inbetween is good. I’m glad they ditched the half-assed RPG elements from the first game and concentrated on space action and characters.
    I’d rather have them seperate the classic (DragonAge) from the neo (ME)

  39. MToTheThird says:

    I’m more annoyed by what ME2 has done to my imported Shepard’s face. The conversion of the facial parameters to ME2’s modeling system meant that my impossibly cute, pear-shaped and pixie-nosed Shepard now resembles a haggard Dutch prostitute who talks Captain Janeway in drag.

    Also, according to one of my grrl-gamer friends, she walks, postures and moves like a man, e.g. when she sits down she crosses her legs perpendicularly, uses macho body language in conversation, etc. Which suggests that BioWare reused the same animations for both Shepards, or at least the same blocking for both the male and female motion capture. That’s pretty disappointing given how good a job they did with distinct motion capture for different genders and even different body sizes in Dragon Age. :/

    • Rinox says:

      I never really noticed that…well I did but never could put my finger down on it. Thanks for pointing it out. It is strange to see female shepard making all these very physical she-man threats (leaning forward, waving a finger in people’s faces). Dragon Age did seem to do a much better job at that, yeah.

    • Alexander Norris says:

      Or, y’know, she’s a badass, high-ranking special forces officer who’s already saved the galaxy once.

      It’s not like there’s a law against women using threatening gestures, you know. Especially when they’re stronger and tougher than 90% of the men in the same setting. :P

    • Rinox says:

      Of course there isn’t a law against it, but human women simply have a very different way of walking and talking with their bodies than men. Realistically and purely physically, even a woman in peak condition will get her ass handed to her at least 90% of the time when faced with similarly trained men (as is the case with most people in ME), as opposed to the cartoon-idiom of superhuman women.

      It’s not a major gripe, but it’s weird. If she was built like Chyna (the wrestler), sure, but with her current physique it’s a bit strange. (And yes ME2 is mostly gunplay which negates physical strength in most situations, but the idea stays the same in conversations)

    • Lilliput King says:

      I’m aware of how fanboyish this sounds, but I reck’n it’s intentional.

      She’s a navy brat that has quite literally been in the forces her entire life. She will not be in the least bit feminine. It would be wrong if she was. Femininity just would not survive in that environment. As for the “most women” stuff, I don’t really consider it important. Shepard ain’t most women, not by a long shot.

    • Nalano says:

      I actually like the macho gait. My femshep (who the hell came up with that term?) saunters around like she’s compensating for her massive balls. I mean, she did save the goddamn galaxy.

      Actually, between her, Garrus, Zaeed, Anderson, Joker, Aria, Chakwas, Liara, Mordin, Jack, Wrex and Grunt, and just about every minor character who plays a good cop, a harried detective, a principled mercenary or a competent engineer there’s so much badassery on-screen that my monitor is squirting testosterone.

      I noticed, by the way, that of the characters I mentioned, there’s a 7:5 ratio of male to female characters. That’s practically egalitarian in gaming terms and one of the reasons I like sci fi in general and Bioware in specific.

  40. Doug F says:

    Without getting into spoilers, regardless of whether you import or not, if a character *could* have died in ME1, don’t count on them being a party member in ME2, which makes sense from a technical standpoint. The sheer amount of seperation between games that could create would be huge.

    Unrelated, am I the only one to find it really refreshing to not have to prove myself to be taken seriously in an RPG? Being the shining beacon of justice, saviour of the galaxy right out of the gate is satisfying, and it makes things feel more epic all around, as you jump right in as a total badass, recruiting the best team in the galaxy.

    Also, Paragon options are much better written this time around, and the interrupt system in dialogue is *great*.

  41. Ginger Yellow says:

    Oh, this news has made my day. I too played ME1 on an Xbox, but want to play ME2 on PC. Furthermore, I quite fancy being Jane Shepherd, given that I hear the voice actor is much better. Even if I got ME2 on my Xbox, I wouldn’t be able to change gender without starting fresh. Now I can play exactly the ME2 I want! I may even give being a Renegade a try, although I always find myself being a goody-goody.

  42. Trousers says:

    Wow So I’m the only one who can’t play the game because of lack of mouse sensitivity options?

    My mouse is all over the place during gameplay, and then slows to a crawl when I press shift or pause the game : (

    • somnolentsurfer says:

      Yeah, I’m finding the shape matching decryption minigame thing pretty much impossible, but I figured it was mostly to do with the message I got at the start telling me I was below minimum spec.

    • qrter says:

      I’m having the same problems, although it helps to keep at it – after a while you sort of start to learn how to move the mouse during those bypass games to be able to hit the 2nd symbol in time.

      There are ways to change your mouse sensitivity, btw – they’re in ME2’s own version of the config file.

      There’s an interesting thread over at the Bioware community forum, telling you (amongst other tweakery things) how to change mouse sensitivity and more importantly, turn off mouse smoothing and something called ‘mouse dampening’.

      link to

      Read the whole thread btw, not all the tips are in the first post.

  43. merc says:

    Yes, I noticed the stub of an interview and thought it seemed odd. Good to hear people have come up with such an ingenious solution already.

    Other than that it’s a great game so far.

  44. 1nightstand says:

    A fresh complaint-

    Does anyone else experience a weird slow-mo of voices when you aim the sniper rifle?

    • Doug F says:

      That would be because Infiltrators get a brief period of slow time when they scope in. It’s actually quite handy.

  45. Kenny says:

    Bit of a shame they didn’t include a ‘what happened’ system, especially considoring my ME1 savegame seems to have disappeared.

    So whats the ‘cannon’ choice regarding the rakni queen you find on that ice planet?

    • somnolentsurfer says:

      Oh God yes. I’d forgotten about that one. I bet they just leave it out altogether. The potential for difference could be universe altering.

    • Unrein says:

      Actually, the choice you made about the rachni queen is acknowledged in ME2. Judging by how it’s acknowledged, the survival of the rachni could possibly play a pretty huge part in defeating the Reapers.

  46. bookwormat says:

    Every future where Ashley is dead is a good future. That girl was racist as hell.

    When she killed Wrex I did everything to end her life as fast as possible. After I cheated my good friend Wrex back of course.

    • Klaus says:

      Wrex was going to kill the commander, I would have shot him as well. And given how the council behaves, Ashley’s concerns are fairly accurate. I think if some Turian colonies started disappearing, they would have gotten off of their asses and looked around. But, I haven’t finished the game so maybe I’m judging them too harshly.

    • somnolentsurfer says:

      Wrex was never going to kill me. We were mates. He was just having a moment.

      I may be, like, 200% paragon, but I want Ashley to be alive so I can rub it in her nasty racist face when I ditch her for weird alien sex with Tali. (Please, please let that be an option.)

    • Klaus says:

      when I ditch her for weird alien sex with Tali. (Please, please let that be an option.)

      I believe it is, I know you can romance Tali and I’ve heard creating love triangles will affect Mass Effect 3. So, I imagine you can cheat on whomever you wish. Though my female Shepard would prefer Joker and left Kaidan to die, and she’s not into the black dude, fish assassin guy, or Garrus. Oh well.

    • Ginger Yellow says:

      And given how the council behaves, Ashley’s concerns are fairly accurate. Well, yeah, but so are the council’s. Let’s face it, future humans in space are usually dicks.

    • Alexander Norris says:

      You guys do know that if you romance her, you can convince Ashley to stop being speciesist, right? It’s actually why Ashley is a much better option to romance then wishy-washy Liara if you’re mShep.

      Given the number of people who go “ZOMG TEH RACISM n RELIJUN!!1!” you’d think more people had actually bothered to explore her conversation tree fully (unfortunate sex pun not intended, but still amusing).

  47. Jimbo says:

    I had the same 360 save dilemma. I avoided it by replaying through on PC over Christmas, but it was definitely an annoying situation.

    I’ve only played about 10 minutes so far, but further annoyances so far include:

    *No AA, those jaggies on the space chairs right at the start are horrible.
    *Renaming the MassEffect2.exe in order to force AA appears to prevent the game running at all if you bought it from EA Store. I hear that’s also true if you bought from Steam.
    *EA Store not sending my DLC codes by the time I was ready to start playing.
    *The tutorial not changing to reflect my altered key bindings.
    *Not being able to tweak my old appearance (I had stupidly gaunt cheeks, which wasn’t apparent in the ME 1 character creator but annoyed me for the entire game).

  48. Mungrul says:

    Huh, finished a ME1 run through last night with a character who has both 100% Paragon and 100% Renegade. Wonder how that’ll go?

  49. Junch says:

    Not trying to be nit-picky, but that’s odd that your blank-slate ME2 game had Ashley dead. She wasn’t dead in mine?

    • Jimbo says:

      I think the default depends on whether your Shepard is male or female.

  50. cjlr says:

    I’m just going to go and say everything worked pretty damn well for me.

    I got the major plot points intact (council, who lives and dies, teh sexy-time), but even all the minor things carried over – Shepard’s mom, that gangster woman you can help coup her gang, conrad, getting emily wong her data, how I dealt with being interviewed, whether or not I gave Tali her data…

    Now, maybe all of this is just stock and I got obscenely lucky, but I really doubt that all the things I did were exactly as they were assumed to have happened for new characters.

    • Jimbo says:

      Does it tell you that stuff at the start or did you find that out by playing through the game? I ask because my import only listed a handful of major decisions.

    • Klaus says:

      Your import only tells you things like, alignment, Wrex’s survival, council’s survival, who you left to die, and maybe one or two more things. From what it sounds like, your file is fine.

      Edit: to clarify, the import screen doesn’t tell you all the little decisions you made in Mass Effect, just those I listed.