Fait's Thoughts on Insanity

Posted by Fait622 (79 posts) -

I'm sure I'm late to the party, but I just finished my Mass Effect 2 Insanity play-through and here's my take on it.


ME1 vs ME2 import:
I played insanity on my second play-through; however, I did not use the "new game +" feature. The reason being is that if you import your ME1 character and start a second game you will still get the long-service medal and all the perks of "new-game +" but you will start at level 3 (or maybe 5) and not 30, and because your enemies are locked to your level the game won't start with you getting jacked by level 30 mechs. The only other difference is that you won't keep any weapons from your first play-through, but I did not find them to be a huge advantage anyway because they are not upgraded, plus I played as a soldier and had the Firepower DLC so I had access to the strongest AR in the game from the get-go.

Bonus Power:
Playing as a soldier Shepard, I made sure to pick Warp Ammo as my bonus power. Some guides I read have suggested the Geth-Shield boost or Fortification. In hind sight  I may have picked one of those because it could have been very useful in the early levels, and the Warp Ammo is not really necessary until Horizon and you have the opportunity to retrain powers before then. That way, early in the game when you are weak and have no upgrades you have some additional protection and later in the game when you need the extra killing-power you switch to the Warp Ammo. The reason I picked warp-ammo over any other offensive bonus power is that it seems to be built for killing collectors, giving you bonus damage against barriers, armor and health.

Tactics:
I was actually surprised at how quickly I got used to the new difficulty. Mass Effect kind of has a reversed difficulty curve, in that if you make sure you get upgrades quickly the game seems to get easier as you go on. My squads usually consisted of whoever I felt like brining unless I felt that I needed specific abilities, for example, on missions where I would be fighting collectors I would bring Miranda and Thane because I could use Warp to take down barriers and armor, on missions where I would be fighting a lot of Blue Suns I would bring Miranda and Garrus so I could Overpower shields and so on. In battle I would turn Squad Disruptor Ammo on for the team and then typically switch to Heavy Warp Ammo for myself, so the squad could take down shielded opponents and I could finish off everything else. The only other tip I can offer is make sure you pick up Hardened Adrenaline Rush, as it can keep you alive long enough to get that last head-shot on a heavy mech and don't be afraid to just sit behind cover while it recharges, Insanity favors are more methodical play style.

I am not a guy that usually looks for a challenge in a video-game, I just want to have an experience, I originally started the Insanity run just in case there are any bonuses for doing so in ME3. But now that I am finished I am glad I did it just for the sake of getting an S-rank in what is my favorite game of this generation, possibly of all time. 

Have fun, kids!

Fait622

#1 Posted by Fait622 (79 posts) -

I'm sure I'm late to the party, but I just finished my Mass Effect 2 Insanity play-through and here's my take on it.


ME1 vs ME2 import:
I played insanity on my second play-through; however, I did not use the "new game +" feature. The reason being is that if you import your ME1 character and start a second game you will still get the long-service medal and all the perks of "new-game +" but you will start at level 3 (or maybe 5) and not 30, and because your enemies are locked to your level the game won't start with you getting jacked by level 30 mechs. The only other difference is that you won't keep any weapons from your first play-through, but I did not find them to be a huge advantage anyway because they are not upgraded, plus I played as a soldier and had the Firepower DLC so I had access to the strongest AR in the game from the get-go.

Bonus Power:
Playing as a soldier Shepard, I made sure to pick Warp Ammo as my bonus power. Some guides I read have suggested the Geth-Shield boost or Fortification. In hind sight  I may have picked one of those because it could have been very useful in the early levels, and the Warp Ammo is not really necessary until Horizon and you have the opportunity to retrain powers before then. That way, early in the game when you are weak and have no upgrades you have some additional protection and later in the game when you need the extra killing-power you switch to the Warp Ammo. The reason I picked warp-ammo over any other offensive bonus power is that it seems to be built for killing collectors, giving you bonus damage against barriers, armor and health.

Tactics:
I was actually surprised at how quickly I got used to the new difficulty. Mass Effect kind of has a reversed difficulty curve, in that if you make sure you get upgrades quickly the game seems to get easier as you go on. My squads usually consisted of whoever I felt like brining unless I felt that I needed specific abilities, for example, on missions where I would be fighting collectors I would bring Miranda and Thane because I could use Warp to take down barriers and armor, on missions where I would be fighting a lot of Blue Suns I would bring Miranda and Garrus so I could Overpower shields and so on. In battle I would turn Squad Disruptor Ammo on for the team and then typically switch to Heavy Warp Ammo for myself, so the squad could take down shielded opponents and I could finish off everything else. The only other tip I can offer is make sure you pick up Hardened Adrenaline Rush, as it can keep you alive long enough to get that last head-shot on a heavy mech and don't be afraid to just sit behind cover while it recharges, Insanity favors are more methodical play style.

I am not a guy that usually looks for a challenge in a video-game, I just want to have an experience, I originally started the Insanity run just in case there are any bonuses for doing so in ME3. But now that I am finished I am glad I did it just for the sake of getting an S-rank in what is my favorite game of this generation, possibly of all time. 

Have fun, kids!

Fait622

#2 Posted by brundlefly (70 posts) -

Cool. Currently playing my insanity run with an Adept. Maybe not the best class choice, but I like a challenge. I picked geth shield boost, but may switch to warp ammo, as you make it sound very enticing.

#3 Posted by S0ndor (2715 posts) -

Yeah, I went in with a soldier and spammed maxed out adrenaline rush. It's pretty easy that way. The only quest that was difficult was the one where you simultaneously fight three large mechs, though that one is optional.


It was quite satisfying to finish it on Insanity.
#4 Posted by Fait622 (79 posts) -
@brundlefly: Once you upgrade your shields and health, having the extra fire-power may be nice, or you may need the extra hit points depending on play style. I personally picked any upgrade that improved squad DPS.
#5 Posted by SethPhotopoulos (5060 posts) -

I tried it with an infiltrator and that did not work out well.  I did soldier and its been going pretty ok.

#6 Posted by Fait622 (79 posts) -
@SethPhotopoulos: For my money Soldier Shepard is the only Shepard 
#7 Posted by SethPhotopoulos (5060 posts) -
@Fait622 said:
" @SethPhotopoulos: For my money Soldier Shepard is the only Shepard  "
Well he is the default.
#8 Posted by JoyfullOFrockets (1177 posts) -
@Fait622 said:
" @SethPhotopoulos: For my money Soldier Shepard is the only Shepard  "
This.

ME2 is one of the easiest games on highest difficulties I've ever played.
#9 Posted by brundlefly (70 posts) -

Completed my insanity run this evening with my adept renegade. It wasn't easy going at first, and probably would have been even crazier without the trusty Geth shield boost. For me, the most difficult encounter was the one on the Collector ship with the platforms, after that it was cake. Like Fait622 said, this game has a  reverse difficulty curve. Also, S-ranked this bitch!

#10 Posted by Teran (877 posts) -
@Fait622:   On ME1 or ME2 imports…


DLC weapons generally made the weapons found in game obsolete.  I don't think the Mattock is the best assault rifle (though it is definitely my favorite) but all three weapons in the firepower pack are very good.  On my soldier I run with the three guns from that pack and go get Kasumi asap for the locust smg.


I imported a ME1 vanguard for a play through and then new game +'d that character for insanity.  Losing your upgrades is a bit painful at the start but over all I found insanity a lot more fun starting at level 30 (I've done it both ways).


On the bonus power…


Defensive powers on insanity are useless in my opinion.  Some folks swear by them but for a soldier/infiltrator/vanguard you're better off with something more offensively oriented.  I used warp ammo on my first insanity run and was disappointed by it.  I found Tungsten ammo (armor piercing) to be superior because nearly every enemy in insanity has both armor and life bars.


Biotic barriers are somewhat rarer than health and armor and even when a biotic barrier is up it usually isn't very powerful.  I think losing 50% damage vs biotic barriers is worth an extra 20% damage vs armor and life (heavy warp is +50%, tungsten is +70%).  The side bonus on warp ammo that does double damage on enemies effected by biotics is a near worthless gimmick as well.


On tactics…


Insanity doesn't really change much over hardcore.  Enemy behavior becomes more aggressive but their hp and damage totals are basically the same.  I don't know that I'd say there's a reverse learning curve but to a degree you are right in that some elements of the game get easier once you get a few of the weapon upgrades.

#11 Edited by vidiot (2737 posts) -

It's possible without patching ME2 to glitch your characters so you can max their skill set's. I would assume that in theory, it should give you a slight edge.

I just wished Insanity had less difficulty choke-points. It's actually quite balanced, but there are too many instances like the Collectors Ship where the difficulty spikes in unnatural situations.

#12 Edited by Ghostiet (5209 posts) -
@SethPhotopoulos said:

" I tried it with an infiltrator and that did not work out well.  I did soldier and its been going pretty ok. "

I thought Infiltrator is the easiest possible class - his cloak makes fights like the Praetorian impossibly easy. It's also the greatest remedy for the dumbass AI of your squadmates in open-space missions like Purgatory.

@vidiot said:

" It's possible without patching ME2 to glitch your characters so you can max their skill set's. I would assume that in theory, it should give you a slight edge. I just wished Insanity had less difficulty choke-points. It's actually quite balanced, but there are too many instances like the Collectors Ship where the difficulty spikes in unnatural situations. "

The worst part for me was the bit with two scions and the husk rush on Horizon. The Collector swarm after that and the Praetorian are difficult, but extremely methodical, the husk rush got on my nerve because it's chaotic and the battle consist mostly of running like hell and shooting behind you. Also, Grunt's recruitment and the lady at the end. While she's piss easy, I could do without six Goddamn krogans. I finally relented and cheesed it with the door trick.

Closing the shutters on Garrus' recruitment could was also crazy, though that might be my fault for taking Miranda instead of Zaeed. Concussive Shot is a miracle when fighting against krogan.

#13 Posted by Teran (877 posts) -
@Ghostiet: I'd have to agree with you, infiltrator is probably the easiest class to beat Insanity with, but soldier is a close second.

Horizon was definitely the hardest part of the game on insanity.  Nothing before or after ever came close.  Grunt's mission was tricky but I was able to beat it without using the door, just had to use heavy weapons (I personally use the ARC projector) and take down the mech as quickly as possible.  You could out last the krogans.

Garrus' recruitment mission was tricky as well but I just switched to incendiary ammo and did fine once I found the right mix of methodical killing and rushing to hit the button.  I even left one of my companions back to help Garrus.

I personally don't leave Miranda behind on insanity, the buffs she gives your damage are quite helpful and minimize your reliance on companions though they can still be useful if you're willing to micromanage them.
#14 Posted by kessler30 (1 posts) -

are there requirements/ something you have to do in me 1 to get realtionship with tali in me 2

#15 Posted by Fait622 (79 posts) -
@kessler30: Not that I know of, but I never tried too so what do I know?

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