Friday, February 21, 2014

Mass Effect 1 - Classes - Infiltrator (on Insane Difficulty) and Garrus

Mass Effect 1: Classes - Infiltrator (on Insanity Difficulty) and Garrus

In this article, we discuss Infiltrator builds for Insane Difficulty.

The Infiltrator talents are:
  • Pistols → Sniper Rifles
  • Tactical Armor → Fitness
  • Electronics → Damping
  • Decryption → First Aid
Recommended Builds:
  • Shepard (88/102 points)
    • Pistols 5, Sniper Rifles 12
    • Electronics 12, Damping 12
    • Decryption 12
    • Infiltrator 6, Operative 6 or Commando 6
    • Spectre 11
    • Bonus Talent: Lift 12
  • Garrus - Turian Agent (70/82 points)
    • Assault Rifles 1
    • Tactical Armor 8, Assault Training 12
    • Decryption 12, Damping 12
    • First Aid 7, Electronics 12
    • Turian Agent 6
If you take Hacking as the bonus talent and Operative as the specialization, you essentially have an Engineer-Operative, but with slightly better class bonuses -- Instead of tech power cooldown, you get increased damage and improved weapon cooldown.
Also, Hacking improves cooldowns on tech skills, so it is very tempting to further specialize in that. Even so, I recommend Lift just because it gets a character out of trouble in melee very quickly. If you want a high-survivability melee-viable character using Fitness/Immunity, I recommend playing a Soldier instead. On Insanity difficulty, however, melee is too hard and annoying for any Shepard build and when everything else is already quite easy, surviving a difficult melee against Krogan is a reasonable build goal.

Both specializations are good. Since you will use a Sniper Rifle frequently, the Commando specialization makes sense as every percentage of damage can help with a Sniper Rifle get a one-shot-kill (especially in the very late game where one-shot-kills are virtually impossible on Insane difficulty), and improved Assassination cooldown will see a lot of action. The Operative improves tech damage and cooldowns, and is recommended if you take Hacking, to minimize your cooldown times.

Notice we have not allocated any points to Tactical Armor or Fitness (but there are 13 points left over). Electronics provides additional shielding, and the rest Shepard will have to make up with cover. You could certainly use 3 points to get Shield Boost, or 10 to get Fitness and basic Immunity. However, an investment in Pistols is also recommended, to get Advanced or Master Marksman for those times when it is too awkward to use a Sniper Rifle (especially if you are going for the Commando specialization).

Garrus has Assault Training, but melee is really too dangerous on Insanity difficulty (especially without Fitness and Immunity) so I recommend against putting Garrus (or any other teammate) in that position. We have nevertheless maximized Assault Training because of Adrenaline Burst: On a tech character like Garrus, Adrenaline Burst is very interesting because it can reset all his tech cooldowns, allowing him (i.e., Shepard, through having Garrus in his team) to immediately deploy another three tech proximity mines. No other tech character can rapidly deploy "grenades" so quickly. Damage potential is very good as tech grenades are accurate and fast enough to be instantaneous.

As with all teammates, skill with Sniping Rifles is discouraged as in play it is weak on teammates. See our discussion on Talents. We have also allocated only 1 point to Assault Rifles because the gameplay style we recommend is a solo Shepard up front, using team mate powers as support, so team mates stay behind. With 12 points left, Garrus can still easily maximize Assault Rifles to provide fire support at all ranges, improve Tactical Armor, or be one of the few characters to develop First Aid if you really need that in your squad.

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