The final battle of Mass Effect 2 can have huge repercussions on your future. The ‘Suicide Mission’ is your last ditch effort to stop the collectors, and your entire party can die if you’re not careful. And considering Mass Effect 3 is directly linked to how your story plays out in ME2, it’s important to save as many characters as possible. In this guide, we’re going to break down exactly how to keep everyone in your group alive. How to prepare for the final mission, and what choices to make when you reach the Collector Base. It’s been a good ten years since the original release and Mass Effect: Legendary Edition, so I figure we could all brush up on the basics.
More Mass Effect: Legendary Edition guides:
Suicide Mission Survival Guide | How To Get ‘No One Left Behind’
The ‘Suicide Mission’ is the final battle — it occurs after initiating the Omega-4 Relay. You’ll also need to complete all preparations BEFORE initiating the Reaper IFF mission. The Reaper IFF will initiate a countdown that requires you to act, so don’t go until you’re fully prepared!
- How To Save Everyone | Before Reaper IFF
- Complete all squadmate Loyalty Missions.
- Complete all critical Normandy ship upgrades.
- Kinetic Barriers (Tali)
- Heavy Ship Armor (Jacob)
- Thanix Cannon (Garrus)
If you initiate the Reaper IFF, you’ll be hit with an ambush and your crew will be kidnapped. The longer you take to travel to the Omega-4 Relay, the more of your crew will die. This is initiate once you have almost all your Loyalty Missions complete.
- After Ambush | Crew Countdown
- After the ambush, the most missions you complete, the more of your crew will die. Talking to Legion (after Kelly announces it) will give you +1 time to complete all Loyalty Missions.
- Once the ambush occurs, you’ll only have a limited time to act.
- 0 Missions: All crewmembers will survive. You have to initiate the Omega-4 Relay immediately.
- 1-4 Missions: Half of the crewmembers will survive.
- 4+ Missions: Only the doctor will survive.
Saving the Normandy Crew is NOT REQUIRED to earn the ‘No Man Left Behind’ achievement / trophy.
Loyalty Missions | Don’t Fail
Loyalty Missions are the most important way to keep your party alive. Anyone that has no completed a Loyalty Mission will die first in the Suicide Mission. Most Loyalty Missions are straightforward, but a few of them can actually be failed if you make the wrong decisions. Below, we’ll cover how to prevent failure in the few Loyalty Missions where that’s an option. Most Loyalty Missions will get your squadmate loyalty just for completing them.
- Tali Loyalty Mission: Make sure NOT to reveal Rael’s Evidence.
- Samara Loyalty Mission: Don’t let Morinth escape.
- Thane: Don’t let Kolyat escape.
- Zaeed: If you save the workers, you also need to convince Zaeed.
The Suicide Mission | Ideal Characters For Each Section
During the Suicide Mission, you’ll be given a series of choices. Even if you haven’t completed all Loyalty Missions, it is possible to save everyone if you make the best possible choices — and you may need to make the best choices, even if you’ve finished the Loyalty Missions. To give your crew the best possible chance at survival, these are the choices you need to make.
Make sure to select a squadmate that is loyal. Even if they’re ideal for the job, if they’re not loyal, they will die / fail.
- Choice #1: Technical Specialist – You’ll need to select someone to enter the vents and disable the doors.
- Best Squadmates: Legion, Kasumi, Tali
- Choice #2: Fire Team Leader – A second team will draw Collector forces.
- Best Squadmates: Jacob, Miranda, Garrus
- Choice #3: Biotic Specialist – After discovering the conversion pods, you’ll have to select a Biotic to create a shield.
- Best Squadmates: Samara, Jack
- Choice #4: Fire Team Leader – You’ll need to select another leader for a distraction squad.
- Best Squadmates: Jacob, Miranda, Garrus
- Choice #5: Escort Mission – Send one squadmate back to the Normandy, leading the surviving crew back.
- Best Squadmates: Mordin
- Choice #6: Defense Squad – While taking on the final boss, the remainder of your squad will stay behind to defend. To keep all of your Defense Squad alive, they must have an average Defense Rating of 2+. Below, you’ll find a list of all characters and their Defense Rating. If a character has not finished their Loyalty Mission, their Defense Rating will be minus one point.
- Defense Rating 4: Grunt, Zaeed, Garrus (Best Choices)
- Defense Rating 2: Samara, Jacob, Miranda, Legion, Thane
- Defense Rating 1: Kasumi, Jack, Mordin, Tali
Finish all the Loyalty Missions and select the best (and loyal) characters for each situation. If you do that, you’ll be able to save everyone in the Suicide Mission.