Every action Commander Shepard took in the original Massive effect The trilogy culminated in the inevitable showdown with the Reapers. This epic battle to save not just Earth but the rest of the galaxy from another cycle of extinction brought Shepard and the Alliance forces on the ground to the center of the battle in London. As the fleets attacked the Reaper forces from space, Shepard and Admiral Anderson led a team toward the Citadel, knowing that the only way to activate the Catalyst was to get someone inside the Citadel.
Getting to the Citadel is not an easy task, and for many, including Shepard and Anderson, it is more than likely a one-way trip. If their sacrifice saves the galaxy and sends the Reapers packing up, it will be worth it, but first, they have to survive the Reaper’s heavy ground assaults and make their way to the Citadel for the Crucible to dock.
Mission: take out the AA battery
Admirals Hackett and Anderson have a plan, but there are complications even before it takes off. Shepard and his squadmates will be dumped in the middle of a densely populated Reaper territory and tasked with reaching for the Reaper Hades Cannon to take it out and clear the way for Hammer Team to land. By the time the shuttle doors open, the Reapers are already firing at Shepard, so take cover when possible and return fire generously to make an opening to exit the shuttle. Once on the ground, start your way through the Reapers, constantly moving upward until you reach an area with multiple enemies, including two Brutes coming from the right. Take cover and deal with the Brutes before they enter melee range, then switch focus to the other enemies.
The Hades Cannon fires often, making it difficult to aim, so take cover and wait until things stabilize again before shooting at enemies in the landing zone. After cleaning the area a bit, start your way through the debris to the next level. At this point, Cortez encounters a Harvester and is shot down, but will survive if Shepard completes his quest line and restores his will to live. Upon reaching the top level, take cover and prepare for a tough battle with cannibals, marauders, and a rampaging guard. Clear the area of enemies and proceed to the crashed shuttle to collect the medkit and two M-920 Cains, which will be used to take down Hades Cannon.
With careful aim, it only takes one of the Cains to take out the cannon. Once it’s been destroyed, take cover and prepare for endless waves of Reaper ground troops, including a Banshee, until Shepard and his squad are extracted. Shepard and Anderson meet again on the shuttle, where Paragon points can be earned during the conversation. As he travels, he updates them on the status of the resistance movement in London, and when they arrive at the Forward Operating Base, Shepard will have some time to explore, chat with his current squadmates, and use the communications terminal to bid farewell to the former squad mates. there fighting the Reapers elsewhere. After meeting Anderson and learning of the plan, Shepard can give one last rally speech to his squad before teaming up to get to the conduit.
Mission: get to the conduit
Fighting through the streets of London, Shepard and his squad work in tandem with the other squads to get at least one person into the conduit. Radio conversations are heard throughout this part of the mission, leading Shepard to certain areas. Shepard and his team traverse the area on foot, while other squads travel through Makos. After taking out the first Marauders and Cannibals, move forward and watch one of the Makos explode ahead, then navigate around the wreckage to spy on a second Mako who is attacked by a Harvester. Taking out the combine is optional, generating 100 bonus XP. There are also several Reaper ground troops firing on Shepard, including the Banshees, which must be eliminated.
When you receive a transmission from an immobilized Hammer platoon, turn left towards the door that leads to a parking lot with multiple husks and two Brutes. This area is a bit narrow, so be careful to avoid backing into a dangerous corner. Eliminate all the enemies and move towards the staircase that leads to an apartment. Explore the apartment to collect ammo and medkits, then head to the door, which is overrun with husks. Take them out and head to the street, on the lookout for a Brute about to crash into the wall. Once it’s settled, head inside the store and proceed carefully, eliminating the cannibals and marauders hiding between the shelves. Go back outside, take cover in the well and start fighting the next waves of enemies. Head through the restaurant and to the back, taking out all the enemies before going to the back alley to face two more Brutes. Head through the hole they created and wait for the cutscene that follows.
Mission: Thanix Missiles
This final sequence of battles is the last hard fight in the game, and it’s one of the most difficult. Shepard must first protect the missile battery from waves of enemies before deploying the Thanix missiles with the help of EDI and Normandy. EDI will have to prepare both missiles before Shepard can fire on the Conduit, which means taking on numerous waves of cannibals, marauders, brutes, banshees, and harvesters coming into the squad from all sides. Take cover and use ranged powers like biotics and grenades to diminish as many enemies as possible before they get too close. Once both missiles have been primed, there is another problem: the Reaper must be moved away to create a clear path for the missile.
Along with heavy enemy ground troops, the Reaper begins to fire its death ray, resulting in Shepard’s death instantly. Avoid lightning by going in and out of buildings, keeping in mind that they will have multiple difficult enemies, especially packs of Brutes and Banshees, ready for a fight. There is also a Harvester that needs to be dealt with before EDI announces that the barrel is ready to fire. Head straight for him and launch the missiles, which brings Anderson and the next cutscene.
Mission: The Citadel
Although the actual fight may be over, there is no time to relax. Team Hammer is little more than a handful of soldiers, but having even one of them enter the Citadel is all it takes to activate the Catalyst. Shepard and her team will have to run towards the beam at the bottom of the hill, while dodging Reaper’s laser fire. Running and dodging enemies is essential as there is no time to stop and fight. Upon reaching the cutoff point in the run, the lightning triggers a cutscene that results in Shepard’s squadmates being injured. The Normandy swoops in to pick them up, and although they fight Shepard for falling behind, only Shepard can advance.
Once they take off, Shepard heads towards the Chute once more, but unleashes gun fire that wipes out everyone and everything around him. Only Shepard remains, and they are seriously injured. With just a pistol and no other powers, limp into the Chute and prepare to fire on the emerging husks. Once they have been dispatched, a Marauder will appear. Shepard needs to finish off this Marauder before reaching the Chute and being dragged inside.
Inside the Citadel, Shepard is agitated upon hearing Anderson’s voice and sees a Guardian sorting out the body parts. He limps down the hall until he reaches a door that goes up a ramp where Anderson is already at the controls. Shortly after Anderson turns around, the final showdown with the Illusory Man begins. The conversation features multiple Renegade / Paragon interruptions, culminating in a final morality test that can only be achieved if Shepard has used Renegade / Paragon in every conversation with him that they have had throughout the game. If he can’t convince himself that he’s indoctrinated, he won’t shoot himself and Shepard will have to take the Renegade’s interruptions to shoot him before showing him what his efforts have done to Earth. Shepard then activates the controls to extend the arms of the Citadel and dock the Crucible before having a final conversation with Anderson. Shepard will fall unconscious but will wake up when the Catalyst is not activated. An elevator will carry the weakened Shepard to a new area.
Mission: Shepard’s Choice
The Catalyst takes the form of the boy who has been haunting Shepard’s dreams ever since they saw the boy’s shuttle fly when the Reapers attacked Earth. It explains the purpose of the Reapers and presents Shepard with options based on his effective military strength. If the galactic readiness is 1749 or less, only the Destruction or Control options are available depending on what Shepard chose to do with the Collector’s Base at the end of Mass effect 2. If the strength score is between 1750 and 2349, both options are available but at a high cost to the galaxy as a whole.
The Synthesis option is available when the effective military strength score is 2800+. With a score of 4000+, Shepard can survive if the Destroy option is chosen and is seen panting in the cutscene at the end. Regardless of Shepard’s options, the Normandy will be hit by the Crucible explosion and forced to crash onto an unknown planet. Depending on the overall military strength Shepard amassed, everyone on board will be killed or, depending on Shepard’s choices, Joker will emerge with EDI and Shepard’s favorite crew member, suggesting that they all survived.
KEEP READING: Mass Effect 3: What ending will Canon be in the sequel?
The Lord of the Rings: Gollum’s new trailer debuts Gandalf from the game
About the Author