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Vanguard Playthrough - Day 1

So, I beat Mass Effect 2 as a Sentinel on Casual, with no deaths (thanks in part, actually, to this wiki.) I felt like it wasn't enough, though. Sure, the game was on Casual, mostly to get used to XBox controls and the updated combat style, but I felt like the Sentinel, my favorite class on Mass Effect, was far to powerful. Enemy defenses? Psh, a couple cool downs and they're gone. Enemy still alive? Another Warp, Overload or a few potshots from my pistol and they weren't. That was not a challenge, and I felt that just amping up the difficulty would still not create one. So I looked and read, and finally decided that a Vanguard was just the challenge I was looking for. Not the best at taking out defenses, and far better at ranges I was not very comfortable with before. So I made the decision to make one on Normal Difficulty. Played the little intro, made different choices on Genesis, romancing Liara, saving the Rachni Queen, sparing Wrex, leaving Ash behind, saving the Council and promoting Anderson. Made my favorite Sheppard face, chose Reave as my bonus power, and got ready for the "tutorial level."

It went as expected, fairly easy. While there were no organic targets, Reave still helped in areas where aiming was not very safe. Occasionally, I'd use charge, only when there were a couple targets left or less. Took me a while to get used to aiming and activating it, but I love the effect it had after the first time. I took my time, even playing through before, to listen to everything, ask as many questions I had, listen to Miranda say Wilson wasn't a threat any more a couple of times, then left. Once I could, I changed my casual wear and my armor, wearing the full Kestrel set, tinted dark purple with bright yellow highlights and pattern. Wicked looking. Talked to the Illusive man, gained my first level. I put the two Squad Points into Charge.

Mission - Freedom's Progress

Pistol - M-3 Predator
SMG - M-4 Shuriken
Shotgun - M-23 Katana
Heavy - M-100 Grenade Launcher

Party - Miranda, Jacob

Freedom's Progress is what I like to consider the second tutorial level. Teaching you how to work with a squad. So again, it went as expected, though I do wonder how Tali knew it was Sheppard when all she could see was my mouth. I did get stuck in mid-air after charging a Mech, which was annoying, only fixed with a reload. The YMIR Mech at the end gave me some troubles. Naturally, trying to tell my squad to take better cover failed miserably, though Miranda did stay conscious long enough to wipe out that things shields. I didn't feel like wasting Medi-gel, thinking they earned it by not following commands. It still had some Armor left, but between my Incendiary Ammo and Reave, and constantly circling a non-destroyable piece of cover, I whittled it down easy enough to charge in, smack it a couple of times and finish off with a shot. After the mission, I enjoyed my little tour around the Normandy, talked up with the crowd, then headed to Omega after doing a bit of scanning around that system. Unlike some people, I actually enjoy doing that. I also added a point into Shockwave and Assault Mastery.

Mission - Dossier: The Professor

Pistol - M-5 Phalanx
SMG - M-4 Shuriken
Shotgun - M-22 Eviscerator
Heavy - Arc Projector

Party - Zaeed, Miranda

I quickly picked up and swapped in Zaeed after landing on Omega, then wandered around, talked to people, got discounts, bought some things, especially the Hack time boost, which is really handy with that mini game. Once I was done being snoopy, I finally got around to talking to Aria to get the info on Mordin. I'm not sure if it's necessary, but it makes me feel better to do so. I headed down below, ready for a decent challenge. I got it. There were some quick fights where my Phalanx took out my target (flaming head and all,) and others where I was able to Reave or Charge in and blast away with my shotgun. There was an area where I made a mistake and charged into too large a group. I was able to make it back to cover in time though. I learned, though, and didn't make the same mistake twice. Between my Phalanx and shotgun, I was able to do a fair bit of damage and claimed quite a few kills. I talked with Mordin a bit after making it there (I love it when he starts rambling,) and recieved the M-6 Carnifex. I quickly swapped that off of me, preferring the Phalanx, but let Miranda keep hers. The next area was difficult, swarming with enemies. This was a tough fight for me, as I didn't have any extra shielding like I did on the Sentinel. This fight lasted longer than more experienced players would say it should, but I wasn't taking any chances. I relied on my Phalanx far more than my shotgun. Thankfully, I got through. The fan area wasn't quite as bad, maybe because there were so many places for taking cover, I was able to use Charge a bit more freely (and funly... I know that's not a word.) After the mission was over, I noticed that it was too late to do much else, so I ended, after gaining a couple of levels, though. Day Two to be done tomorrow.

End of Day Report

Level - 5
Incendiary Ammo - 2
Cryo Ammo - 1
Charge - 2
Shockwave - 1
Pull - 0
Assault Mastery - 1
Reave - 1

Total Playtime - 5h, 10m || Save # 17

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