Mass Effect to be released on January 26 in North America
. [strike]No specific confirmation, but there is reason to believe the 360 and PC version will hit the shelves at the same time.[/strike] (If one or the other is delayed for some reason, don't blame the editor.) 29th of January in Europe.
Here's the old OP
Going to reserve this space for ME2 info. Relevant ME1 info added as needed.
New Mass Effect 2 website.
Age verification required.
Two years have passed since the events of the first Mass Effect game. Galactic Apocalypse has been thwarted, but now, a new threat has emerged…
Human colonies have begun to disappear and it is up to Shepard to find out what is causing the disappearances and assemble a team to put a stop to it.
Mass Effect 2 will feature new worlds and locations, new weapons, new skills, and new characters to continue the story of Alliance Systems Navy Commander Shepard, the first human Spectre. The shadowy organisation Cerberus will play a more significant role in the sequel as Shepard is compelled to join forces with them to make the mission a success.
Old friends and faces from the first Mass Effect will be able to return, depending upon choices made in the original, and there are many new ones that will either join with Shepard or attempt to hinder the mission.
Along with a larger selection of weapons compared to the first game, a new class will be introduced. Shepard and company will now be able to wield rocket launchers and other high-damage, high-satisfaction weapons. Ejectable heat sinks have been added to allow players to continue firing during hectic combat without being required to wait for the weapon to cool down normally.
So far, two new alien races have been introduced. The drell and the vorcha. Not much is known about the drell outside of recruitable character Thane, but there has been information released about the vorcha. Other races are planned as more details come to light.
And now a few frequently asked questions explained:
How will I be able to import my Shepard?
Exact details about how this will work have not been released. However, due to experience with how it works in Mass Effect, it is expected that the game will search for data files from the first game to load a list of Shepards that have completed the game. This data is not the same as the possibly many save files you may already have, so unless you are certain about which ones are gamestate saves and which ones are not, the best advice is to keep everything around until more specific information is available.
Will Character So-and-So return?/Will my love interest return?
Any characters that survived to the end of the first game will make an appearance in Mass Effect 2. This includes whomever you may have chosen as your love interest. So far, only Tali has been confirmed as a party member, but it has not been confirmed that any other ME1 character will be actual team members. Shepard must recruit the ‘best of the best’ to fill out the team and original members may not meet necessary criteria. Or, it may just be they might not wish to join depending upon who is already on the team. Exactly how many you may recruit from and the maximum potential teammates has not yet been confirmed. [strike]Though twelve is a number that has been mentioned.[/strike] (BioWare as apparently removed any reference to the number twelve in relation to recruitable characters.) Definitely more options than before.
Are elevators still a problem?
The developers have confirmed that they have been working to improve loading times. This includes the ‘hidden’ loading that would happen on elevators. It’s been said that while elevators still exist within the in-game ME universe, they are not expected to be as bad as they were originally.
I don’t like some choices I made in the first game. Can I make alterations to Shepard in the sequel?
To coin a phrase: sort of. No exact details have been released about making changes to imported Shepard characters, but BioWare is aware of such requests and have made comments to the effect that they are working on it. Christina Norman, a lead BioWare developer, stated that it will be possible to switch combat classes upon import
We have five other great classes in Mass Effect to choose from, and we let you choose your class on import [...]
Whether or not this means a physical appearance change is possible is unknown at this time.
Will there be new combat classes in the game?
No. There will be new skills introduced (such as a new biotic talent: Pull), but the combat classes will remain the same. Adept, Engineer, Soldier and the combination classes Sentinel, Infiltrator, and Vanguard will return.
They’ve said that if Shepard dies, he dies ‘for real’. What does that mean for Mass Effect 3?
It means that the Shepard that dies, is dead. BioWare has stated all along that Mass Effect is the story of Shepard's exploits. Therefore, Shepard must return for Mass Effect 3, even as a ‘canon’ character. The choices you’ll make in ME2 could lead to the death of that Shepard. If you don’t want Shepard to die, make multiple saves or simply start ME2 over again and make different choices.
What if I never played the first Mass Effect. Is there a KOTOR II-style introduction to the events of the first game?
Nobody outside BioWare/EA knows for sure how a ‘tabula rasa’ Mass Effect 2 will begin. Through interviews and message board posts, it is theorised that a combination of canon defaults and user choices will set the stage. But this has yet to be confirmed.
What if I played the first Mass Effect way too many times and I have a level 60 Shepard? Will any of that effort pay off in Mass Effect 2? I don’t want my Shepard to be ‘reset’.
Yes, but that depends. Exactly how an imported Shepard will be plugged into the game is not yet known, but we do know that because of the new skills and how they’ve made some modifications to the combat engine, old skills and skill levels may not work as they did before.
For example, if you had Throw as a skill and maxed it out at 12 points, you will receive some kind of in-game bonus to represent your previous knowledge. But you will not start at level 12 for the skill. The skill reset is to accommodate the new engine, but they will not ignore the effort you’ve put into your character up until now.
One time, I chose to perform action Y instead of action X. Will ME2 recognise this? I’ve played multiple times, how will I know which save to choose?
Yes it will. But the extent of what decisions Shepard made and how they will affect events in ME2 is not yet fully known. BioWare has stated that all choices made are tracked and kept in the numerous end-of-game save lists.
Currently, the ability to start a new game with an ‘old’ Shepard simply lists the first name, the date completed, and the level reached by the character. There is no information on what, if any, differences will appear when selecting a Shepard to import.
The first official FAQ list
. (So far, the only official FAQ list...)
A new list FAQs on the BioWare forums
Casey Hudson blogged some shit
. More direct answers so some FAQs.
Preston Watamaniuk, ME Lead Designer, has this to say on New Game+
. (Scroll Down).
Casey Hudson apparently changes his mind
about New Game+.
If players start a New Game + after beating the game they will be able to re-use the same character import file they did for their first playthrough. Yes New Game + is making a return to Mass Effect 2!
Courtesy of TychoCelchuuu.
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There are also rules to this thread. Please observe them as they will be enforced.
Useful checklist of ME1 locations and mission requirements.
Having problems with the Pinnacle Station DLC on the 360? Here is the thread at the Official Forums talking about it.
Whilst a Mass Effect thread exists, the probability of a comparison between Ashley Williams to Nazis or Hitler or other fascists approaches 1.
Invariably, discussions must refer to krogans and their reproductive configurations lest anybody forgets.
Repeating a meme as proof of negative criticism is always an option. Especially when necessary to win.
Insisting that the quality of a character is directly related to the familiarity of the voice artist.
The less a character is appreciated by an individual, the more insistent the argument that the character is universally bad for all.
Demanding that a favourite character or character-type will trigger potential seduction scenarios.
The sooner a player discovers a favourite combat class, the louder the insistence of its superiority.
Belief that any event which provides a choice, provides no actionable choices at all.
Problems with Therum in the first Mass Effect? Solution in the spoiler.
Hey! Therum is missing textures!
A PC game with bugs? That's unpossible!
Sadly, many have had issues with the PC version of the game. Obviously, make sure you have the latest drivers available. And while we're happy to help in this thread, contacting 'official' support personnel may have better results.
Here is a link
to a list of issues the Steam version may have in general.
But this seems to work best for the Therum issue:
The solution is usually quite simple - without doing anything else after landing on Therum - save your game, exit, go to the Steam\steamapps\common\mass effect\Binaries folder, and run the MassEffectConfig.exe
(if you are running Vista you will first have to right click on this file, and have it run in XP compatibility mode)
Once you run the config file, click on the Repair option, and then click on "Delete Local Shader Cache Files".
Restart the last saved game on Therum, and it should work.
Don't try to manually delete the shader cache files - you shouldn't have to if you use the config tool.
If you find you'd rather delete the files manually, you might have to do it more than once before success.
Though a patch is mentioned as coming soon, we don't know when yet. This may address the issue once and for all.