I’ve spent a good few hours playing through this game, and after finishing Mass Effect I moved on to Mass Effect 2. I did the first game’s FOV change by manually editing some game files to bind the FOV change to a key (numpad 2 in my case.) I started Mass Effect 2 and the game immediately hurt my head. Extremely close third-person view and I had to change the files again. Instead of trying to do this manually, I decided to check out Nexus Mods, because it’s been a few days since release. I found a compiled fix for all the entire trilogy, just needing to replace one file in each game’s directory.
Must Have: Better Camera (Higher FOV)
This mod adjusts your FOV by pressing the F10 key. The download contains 3 files, each under their own category. ME1, ME2, ME3. You can place the files in the folder in each game’s \BioGame\CookedPCConsole folder, replacing the file named Coalesced.bin. Should go without saying, backup your original by renaming it or otherwise moving it in case of corruption issues. Then press F10 in-game and you’ll be set.
Must Have: Trilogy Save Editor
This save editor has been a nice touch. I’ve used it to correct small issues I ran in to, such as accidentally selecting renegade conversation options on a full paragon playthrough. You can edit things like credits, weapons, plot points, armor, romances, and companions unlock/lock status. Or, like in my case, I added a ton of resources in Mass Effect 2 because I don’t want to spend hours (and credits) scanning each planet in each system for ship upgrades and weapon/armor tech upgrades. Yeah, I’m lazy, but I’ve done it legit in about 10 characters way back when the game originally released. As of May 19th, it has full support for Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3, while Mass Effect is limited to plots and head morphing at this time. (At release, it only supported ME2/ME3 due to changes in how the save files worked. ME1 used a different save format originally, which was changed for this trilogy release.)
Must Have: Shepard Can Run
This is specific to Mass Effect 2, but it wouldn’t hurt to figure this out for Mass Effect as well. Shepard has terrible stamina for someone that’s an elite soldier. Again, this only changes ME2, but as I’m playing that now, it’s a welcome change. This allows Shepard to run three times longer in combat, and four times longer out of combat. Also greatly reduces stamina regeneration time, because you should be able to sprint a bit more as a principle.
Must Have: Allow All Weapons
Made by the same author as Shepard Can Run, this mod now includes FOV edits, HUD hiding, and Shepard Can Run mod. In ME2, you are limited to two weapons and heavy weapon. It’s restrictive, and makes a lot of missions nearly impossible on higher difficulties. This gives you an option to have a long range and short range, instead of being stuck with, for example, a Sentinel loadout of an SMG and a pistol. The SMG is terrible in 90% of the game, as accuracy is almost an afterthought. Unfortunately, of the six weapons types, you’re currently limited to only being able to use five. However, you have the ultimate choice to pick which one you want by selecting the appropriate Coalesced.bin file and copying that to you game folder.
Useful: LEME2 Normandy Scanning
This one seems to be a lot of different mods packed in to one, specifically for ME2. It originally started as adjustments to the Normandy in ME2, such as travel speed, number of probes, fuel efficiency, and scanning changes. It now has several other mods packed in. Included are the previous two must haves above: Allow All Weapons and Shepard Can Run, I’ve gone over those already. Another tweak adds 70 casual outfits, 11 helmets, and 4 armors.
The Normandy tweaks include:
- Max Probes=50
- Max Fuel=1500
- Fuel Efficiency=1 from 1.5
- System Acceleration from 2.5 to 3.5
- Cluster Acceleration from 0.22 to 1
- Cluster Deceleration from 0.38 to 1.5
- Scanning Reticle speed from 0.02 to 0.12
- Planet scanning rotation speed from 0.025 to 0.1
Worth A Look: Manual – Coalesced.bin
Not so much a mod, as an editing tutorial. This is more useful for making your own edits. As far as compatibility goes, all the mods basically edit the same files for the same effects. I took a quick peek, and the included PDF goes in to moderate detail on changes you can make. It’s not comprehensive, and far from complete, but it’ll do a good bit without you having to worry about compatibility issues. I browse Nexus Mods for ideas to include in my own editing, because I don’t know everything that can be changed. It’s a good middle ground in lieu of advanced modding tools for the time being. I spent a lot of time in the ME3 days editing this file, so if you need some guides, you can look up ME3Explorer. It’s a tool set designed for ME3, but a lot of the same modding carries over to this trilogy. Honestly, it’s worth a look, even if it’s just to adjust one of the above mods for something you would prefer instead of a catch-all mod you just copy and paste in to the game folders. Additionally, this will work for all three games. You won’t need any extra modding tools, unless you want to do some ReShade, or save editing.
Worth A Look: Jane Shepard’s Closet
For those of you that like playing FemShep, this mod opens up a lot more armor options for her, including the team’s private armor. Currently included in the mod: Kasumi’s Gear, Miranda’s Gear, and one version with both. You’ll have to choose between the three, though the author does say they recommend using either Kasumi or Miranda, as there are less bugs and complications. Possibly upcoming are Liara’s and Vasir’s, but there seem to be complications. Tutorial on installation is included on the linked mod page, so I won’t repost them here. If you don’t know, this is for Mass Effect 2 only.
Worth A Look: ME3LE Double Value War Assets
As it states, this doubles the values of various war assets. It also includes some other changes:
- Weight penalty inverted, powers recharge 10x normal speed.
- Interaction distance increased from 800 to 10000.
- Fuel efficiency increased from 1.5 to 0.5.
- Max fuel capacity raised to 10000.
- Planet scanner speed (inactive) raised from 90 to 250.
- Planet scanner speed (active) raised from 35 to 100.
- System scanning range increased from 60 to 500.
- Ability to toggle FOV to 100 with F6 and 110 with F7
I only put this in worth a look because the power recharge change is kind of iffy for gameplay. I remember some powers being exceptionally powerful, thus the high cooldown. The other changes make tons of sense, as the scanning is pretty slow when you’re going for a completion goal.
Worth A Look: ME2LE Better Weapons Mod
Alright, a lot of the guns feel pretty weak in ME2. Similar to the Allow All Weapons mod above, except that most of the stats for the weapons have been rebalanced. I haven’t tested this mod (yet) but the biggest issue seems to be fixing accuracy. According to this mod, it seems to have achieved that effect. This balances don’t effect weapon mods yet, but it seems to be in the pipeline at a later date. Definitely worth a look if you’re looking for just better gun play and less grindy gunfights.
May 28 Update
There are quite a few new mods released in the last week or so, so definitely go check Nexus Mods and take a stroll through their pages. There are quite a few mods that would count as “cheating” in some form, but I’m sure the mods above could fall in to that category as well. I’ve added 3 more mods to the list, and I’ll try to keep updating this list each week to keep new info flowing in.
I’m sure I’ll come across more mods as time passes, and I’ll update this post as I come across some of the good ones. Keep an eye out here and I’ll update it as I go.