How to build the best character in Mass Effect: Andromeda

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Character progression in Mass Effect: Andromeda is radically different. The classes of the original trilogy – a familiar RPG staple – are gone, and you’re free to do whatever you want. 

That’s not to say there’s nothing to it. 

So if you’ve yet to take the trip to the nearest galaxy, here’s a handy guide to getting the best from your character as soon as possible.

Choose the right training

This is important, but only for the first few hours – after that you have access to the Tempest’s medbay, where you can pay to reshuffle your skills. Note that it gets more expensive each time, however, so don’t lean on it too hard! Training sets your basic skills – such as being great at close-quarters combat, or stealth, or at exploiting technology – and determines which of the seven Profiles you can fit into. Profiles are kind of like the old character classes, but you can switch between Profiles as you see fit, and enjoy the increasingly powerful bonuses they bring.

Specialize

Though you no longer start by picking a class, and can choose whatever skills you like from the Biotic, Tech and Combat trees, it still pays to stick to a single category – in the main, at least. You need to focus on a category to take advantage of its passive buffs, but a smattering of alternate skills is actually very effective. 

So long as two abilities complement each other – fires and explosions, for instance – they can be combined whether they’re from the same category or not. They don’t have to both, for instance, be from Tech. Therefore, there’s no need to lock yourself in. 

What’s more, putting points into a skill you don’t end up using doesn’t need to be a waste, thanks to the Re-Spec station in the medbay. Experimentation is pretty painless, so leave the specialization until you’ve figured out what’s most useful to you, then enjoy the buffs.

Switch it up

You can switch Ryder from one character build to another very easily – flipping them via the Favorites menu – even in the middle of a fight. So again, it’s important not to get yourself into a rut from the start of the game until the end. 

At this point a fast-response, gaming-specific keyboard is going to start paying dividends over the generic stuff built for typing. A similar mouse is also key. Luckily you can get both with Logitech G’s new limited edition Mass Effect: Andromeda keyboard, mouse, headset and mousepad—which not only sport a slick custom Mass Effect: Andromeda design, but built in features that will actually enhance your experience with the game (go here for more on Logitech G’s gaming gear). 

The G810 mechanical keyboard features presets for Mass Effect: Andromeda so it can react to in-game events – glowing orange to indicate depleted shields, for instance, or lighting up context-sensitive control keys as necessary – and can be heavily customized. It also handles multiple key presses without ghosting or lag. You need that in fights of Andromeda’s scale and complexity. 

All you really need beyond that is make sure each character build uses skills that compliment each other. For instance, combine combat skills with weapon-maxing abilities for the most effective soldier – and plough points into those things if, and when, they’re really working for you. 

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