UNC: Platinum Mass Effect 1 – Complete!

I did it!! After 4.01 playthroughs in about 4 weeks (or to be less technical: 4 full playthroughs and a tiny bit of 5th one to get to level 60) I acquired the Mass Effect 1 Platinum Trophy on Friday June 21st after that annoying IRL work thing. Woot! Look at me achieving unimportant gaming goals I have set for myself.

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And It couldn’t have popped at a weirder time… At least Ashley was nearby for a congratulatory hug, eh!

And yes, I’ve already claimed most of the trophies in Mass Effect 2 (I’ll just say social isolation is great for achieving gaming goals). Keeping with the theme of this Platinum quest post series, here’s some of the highlights from the last two weeks of my Mass Effect 1 Platinum quest.

WARNING: Lots of !!!SPOILERS!!! below. Stop reading and scrolling if you don’t want the Mass Effect trilogy ruined for you. You have been warned.

Week 3 – Insanity Done

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I named my Insanity Shepard “Claire” in order to channel the unstoppable power of my Final Fantasy XIII shero.

Insanity difficulty was rough starting out, but it got surprisingly easy shortly after recruiting Liara. Enemies are shielded bullet sponges that level scale, for sure, but once my squad’s powers were leveled up enough twas a cake walk. I went with an Engineer Shepard paired with Ashley the tank and Liara the badass biotic for this playthrough’s squad. The plan was to get all of the Tech power trophies, Ashley’s trophy, and Liara’s trophy along with all the Insanity level fun. Unfortunately, I didn’t do enough side missions for my asari super BFF’s trophy to pop (I guess?), but hey, that just meant I had to spend more time with Liara on my next playthrough. Yay!!

My biggest problem was stupid glitches. Not sure why this difficulty run had so freaking many of them. Some were certainly more helpful than others…

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Exhibit A: Helpful glitch! The Krogan Bouncer (who murdered my squad) got stuck in the door. I was able to shoot him to death at a safe distance. HA! I wish I could’ve recruited the door to Chora’s Den. Much more helpful than Kaidan and Ashley.
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Exhibit B: Game breaking glitch… And here I was thinking the Insanity Benezia boss fight would be the biggest challenge on Noveria. My game crashed a few times here, and Liara started randomly hovering. But the worst was when Liara fell through the world in a corridor and eventually disappeared from my squad. I had to reload back to the Hot Labs… no way in hell just Ash and I can take out Benezia on Insanity.
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It was fun to roll with Ashley and Liara. They certainly had some interesting elevator chats on the Citadel. I love how Mass Effect presents gender and race equality issues, by the way. Keep being badass, ladies!
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Okay… last girl chat elevator photo, I promise. This line from Liara was really inspiring and one of many examples of why I love her character.
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Yep. Alcohol is only a temporary fix for the pain, Zabaleta… But yeah, I got to experience a new quest! I gave Claire the Spacer/War Hero background, meaning I got to chat with Shepard’s mom (Hannah) and attempt to help out an old family friend.
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I… can’t disagree with that statement, Liara. I’d like to tell the seedy elements of the galaxy to keep it in their pants, but that might come across as rude.
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Once Liara had Singularity maxed out, Insanity got a lot less insane… well, for my team, at least.
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Not shocked I got the Dampening Specialist trophy while fighting Benezia and her asari commando squad. I got killed a lot, but once I realized my Neural Shock power and Liara’s Lift ability are essentially I Win buttons against the indoctrinated Matriarch, victory was mine! Oh and I accidentally killed the Rachni Queen (skipped through dialogue too fast… oops), felt so bad I reloaded, and then beat Benezia again. Yep! I beat Benezia twice on Insanity difficulty. Mad Mass Effect skillz over here, eh!
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Call Ashley Williams an ignorant racist all you want, internet, but she’s definitely not in my eyes. She’s a badass, speaks her mind, grows into a better person, and is a great sister to boot. All qualities I admire. I loved hearing her put the actual racists in their place at a pro-Human political rally on the Citadel just before Ilos.
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Shepard Decontamination Selfie!
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Yada yada yada… the final fight with Saren on Insanity was just long and not really challenging. He’s immune to pretty much everything so I had to very slowly shoot him to death, while not getting exploded. Good times!

Week 4 – Grinding

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I replayed my original Ellen Shepard file (who was at level 50) and went for a casual brute force stroll through the entire game again.

And just like that, I had a mere two trophies remaining for the shiny Platinum. Wow… time flies! Luckily, the remaining two trophies complemented each other quite nicely. Extreme Power Gamer required me to level up a character to 60, while the Asari Ally trophy required me to beat 75% of the game with Liara. I missed Liara’s trophy on my last attempt so I made it a point to ignore all side quests on the Citadel before finding her.
And damn… level 60 required a whooping 862,100 XP. Even after doing all of the side quests I could find, I didn’t get from 50-60 during this playthrough so I had to re-import for the last few thousand.

Liara’s trophy did finally pop, though! And speaking of Liara, I decided to pursue the official romance option with her during this 4th PS playthough. I love Liara in my atypical demiromantic asexual way, and finding what I consider the unofficial asexual romance option during my PC playthrough of the trilogy changed my life, eh. She’s definitely my super BFF and dream life partner.

Having developed a deep emotional bond with Liara during my PC playthrough last year, I was curious how I’d feel seeing Ellen Shepard do the kissing+ thing with Liara. I didn’t hate it, but I still very much prefer the secret asexual option I found. I’ll likely explore this topic more in a separate blog post so stay tuned for that.

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The Casual difficulty combined with X Spectre gear made me feel like an unstoppable warrior goddess! I needed that confidence boost, let me tell you. The Frictionless Materials X x2 on my HMWA X assault rifle made it NEVER overheat. I just mowed down everything and it was awesome!!
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I can’t believe I missed these smuggler guys on Eden Prime for, like, 5 whole playthroughs (including PC last year)… They were all tucked away in a trailer I kept running by. Anyway, I finally met them!
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Algorithms…. So, I didn’t get Liara’s trophy on my entire Insanity run with her, but I randomly got it before Virmire on this playthrough… whatever!
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Alright, Kaidan… I’ll haul your ass off of Virmire again. I do prefer to save Ashley, but I want to see Kaidan’s role in the trilogy for Ellen Shepard’s PlayStation journey.
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Damn, girl!! A strong emotional and spiritual bond that goes way beyond that superficial sex thing?? This demiromantic ace’s heart is a flutter! Officially wooing you isn’t so bad after all… tee hee.
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Just like my Shepard, I have absolutely no idea how this sex thing is supposed to work. Huh… the actual “sex scene” that followed was very ROFL cheesy in my eyes, but I loved the idea that their connection went way beyond the physical stuff I’m averse to. I plan to see how their relationship officially unfolds across the trilogy. For sexy science! 🤔

⚡Thanks for reading!⚡

If for some odd reason you want to read more of my posts, you can find a somewhat organized (and usually up to date) archive of my ramblings… I mean, articles here!


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I'm a wannabe writer and an avid video gamer with a slight (okay, maybe extreme) Amiibo addiction. I'm from the coastal province of Nova Scotia in Canada, eh. When I'm not gaming, I have a steady job thing I have to go to. It pays for the gaming thing though. :)

11 thoughts on “UNC: Platinum Mass Effect 1 – Complete!”

  1. Enjoyable read as always gotta love ME it’s always worth another playthrough such great characters, that last line “For sexy science!” got me 🤣

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Congrats! Achievement unlocked: Being a Badass for 100G.

    Mass Effect is the only series that I would playthrough again and again. I love these games. I should definitely get back into it now that the games are BC on Xbox.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Wait, there’s smugglers on Eden Prime. How many times have I knocked through that planet and never found them?

    Well, in any case, here’s a game that’s been absolutely conquered. Congrats for that!

    Liked by 1 person

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