by Tore Andersen

Mass Effect 2 is the second game in the legendary Space Action-RPG series from BioWare, released in 2010 and still a masterpiece. Technically the game is excellent, only the textures, models and world detail show the games ago a little. This project will enhance the visuals and effects, plus optionally add a new custom ReShade for better lighting, AA and image clarity. The guide has step-by-step instructions, no modding experience needed.


1: Requirements
2: DLCs
3: Mod installation
4: Screenshots
5: Artwork


1 - Requirements

1: Mass Effect 2 (version 1.2) with Cerberus Network DLC.
*The Steam version comes already updated, and has the Cerberus Network DLC already installed.
2: Sign up at the Nexus. It's free and it takes 2 minutes. (LINK)

Game Update 1.2: (LINK) *For the non-Steam version.
Download and install.


2 - DLC Activation/Installation

Activating the Cerberus Network:
Start the game and connect to the Cerberus Network. This will require you to make an online EA account (Origin Store Account). You can make it from within the game, and you don't ever need to use it. Quite silly, but whatever, it's done in a sec.
*If you have the Steam version of the game, you can find the Cerberus Network Key-Code is in your Steam library.

Set Auto Login to "Yes" under options, so you don't need to log into the Cerberus Network every time you start the game. *When you have done this the first time, it will work regardless if you have internet connection or not.

Other DLCs. (Optional but recommended):

All other DLCs can be downloaded here: (LINK)
*They are free to download and install, but you need to buy them in the Origin store for them to work in the game: (LINK)
If the game display "Authentication failed" after you bought the DLC in the store, download and run this patch: (DOWNLOAD)
Unpack the file anywhere and run the tool, that's it.
If the game still display "Authentication failed", download this patch too: (DOWNLOAD)
Block Mass Effect 2 in your firewall so the game can't connect to the internet. Then make a backup of "\Binaries\MassEffect2.exe". Now download and unpack the patch into the game-folder.

DLC List:
Firewalker Pack
Zaeed The Price of Revenge
Cerberus Weapon and Armor
Normandy Crash Site
Cerberus Arc Projector
Lair of the Shadow Broker
Kasumi Stolen Memory
Firepower Pack
Aegis Pack
Equalizer Pack
Alternate Appearance Pack 1 (Garrus, Thane, Jack)
Alternate Appearance Pack 2 (Tali, Grunt, Miranda)


3 - Mod Installation

Shorter loadings (LINK)
Download and unpack the file into the game-folder. Overwrite.

Arrival Triggering Mod (LINK)
Download and unpack to a temporary folder, then move the content of the "Version 1" folder into the following path inside the game-folder:  "\BioGame\DLC\DLC_EXP_Part02\CookedPC\".
*This mod needs a small patch that prevents the game from checking the DLC file sizes: (DOWNLOAD)
Unpack the file anywhere and run the tool.
If the game removes the modded file or doesn't recognize the DLC, download this patch: (DOWNLOAD)
Block Mass Effect 2 in your firewall so the game can't connect to the internet. Then make a backup of "\Binaries\MassEffect2.exe". Download and unpack the patch into the game-folder.

SIllium Landing Movie Mod (LINK)
Download and unpack to a temporary folder, then run the installer.

Same-S Romances for ME2 (LINK) *Optional. Works with save-games from Mass Effect 1
Download and unpack into "\BioGame\DLC\" inside the game-folder.
*If you didn't install "Illium Landing Movie Mod", then you need to download this DLL patch (DOWNLOAD)
Download and unpack into the game-folder

Texture Mods
Download these mod files, but don't unpack / install them yet
*Some of the mods are made for Mass Effect 3, but they work perfectly for Mass Effect 2 as well

Misc. Complexion Tweaks (LINK)
Download "Illusive Man Complexion Tweak"

Jacob Complexion Tweak (LINK)

Better Hair (LINK)

broShep High Quality textures (LINK)

femShep High Quality textures (LINK)
Download "Illusive Man Complexion Tweak"

WpnCarnifex (LINK)

WpnKatana (LINK)

WpnPredator (LINK)

WpnShuriken (LINK)

Weapon M-8 Avenger (LINK)

Weapon Mantis M-92 (LINK)

HR Weapon Textures (LINK)

A Lot Of Textures (LINK)
Download 1 "ALOT 2018 - Installer"
Download 2 "ALOT for ME2 6.0 - Textures"
Download 3 "ALOT for ME2 6.7 - Update"

Texture Installation

1: Make a temporary folder in the root of your hard-drive.
2: Move the "ALOT 2018 - Installer-68-2018.exe" into the folder and run it.
It will install itself into "ALOT Installer" inside the temporary folder, and automatically start the program.
3: Move all downloaded texture mods into "\ALOT Installer\Downloaded_Mods\"

The program should now look like this:

4: Click "Install for ME2"

4: Follow installation instructions. (Remember to check everything but "User Files" before building & installing.)

This will take about 20-30 minutes, even of a fast computer. When done, you can delete the temporary folder. All textures have been installed.

Mass Effect 2 to dark FIX (LINK)
Download and unpack the file into the game-folder. Overwrite.

Vignette Remover (LINK)
Download and unpack to a temporary folder, then move the content of the "Vanilla" folder into the following path inside the game-folder: "\BioGame\CookedPC\". Overwrite.

Download and unpack into the Mass Effect game folder.

*Note for Windows 10 users:
The Creators update for Windows 10 introduced a wide variety of problems, especially for games with custom renders like ENB or ReShade. If you encounter problems like messed-up graphics or extreme slowdowns, then follow the steps in number 4 here: (LINK) *Pay special attention to the RivaTuner settings.
If this doesn't work, then Windows is somehow still blocking it. Search Google for alternative ways of forcing Windows 10 to use custom d3d files. If you are unable to fix it, then you will have to uninstall the ReShade and play without. Just delete the d3d9.dll file but keep everything else.

That's it. Mass Effect 2 is ready for launch



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4 - M.2.E.P. Screenshots

   ReShade                                           Original                                                 ReShade                                             Original









5 - Artwork












Mass Effect Game Info

Mass Effect 2 is a science fiction action role-playing game developed by BioWare, published and released by Electronic Arts in 2010. The first 3 games are about an officer/commander named Shepard, who can be either male or female depending on the players choice. The goal is to save the galaxy from some powerful robots known as the Reapers, or at least do what's possible to fight them.

All three games have received several awards for their rich story and incredible universe. The attention to detail is astonishing and the atmosphere and world is very interesting and immersive.