I am just starting Mass Effect 1 for the first time. I looked at the classes and the Biotics looked cool so I chose the class that does them. But now I am seeing that I only get a pistol and my biotic abilities are not that great (I tried to throw a Geth and it did not do much. I had to use my pistol to kill it). It also took a very very long time to recharge.

When I play RPG games I usually go for the magic user class, so the biotics seemed to be the analogous class. I am also familar to starting with magic missile and a dagger. So if the Biotics will get better I am willing to tuff it out.

My question is, will they get better? Or should I go with the half biotic half fighter class? (I usually steer away from dual classes because you get to be OK at both but not really great at either.)

So, should I just be the fighter? Any input from someone who has played the game?

8 Answers 8


This question is somewhat moot. All classes are equally effective in their own right and since it is a squad based game any shortages that your character may have can easily be augmented with other squad members.

Now as others have mentioned the Biotic (and the Tech) may indeed feel like support classes in ME1, especially at the begining of the game. But by the end they can all lay down the pain in equal parts (through better equipment and assigned talent points).

If you are seriously concerned about only having a pistol (which would seem odd if you are used to playing mage classes) you can do as yx01 suggested and play through as a Soldier one time and get the requisite kills with each weapon which will unlock those weapons for future, new Shepards in the form of a single bonus talent at character creation.

Keep in mind too that if you intend to import this character (or any) into ME2 that you are able to change their class shortly into the game if you desire (which seems somewhat contrary to the plot, but whatever) and in ME2 both the Biotic and Tech classes definately come into their own thanks to combos and some new talents.

So in the end the choice is really yours and depends on what style you prefer when playing squad-based third-person shooter RPGs.

  • I disagree. Any class that relies on abilities is garbage in ME1 due to ridiculously long cooldowns. This has been rectified in ME2 and 3. The problem is somewhat mitigated at higher levels, but getting there is incredibly dull.
    – kotekzot
    Commented Jun 26, 2012 at 12:45
  • 1
    @kotekzot true, but unlike the other 2, your powers are independent in ME1 so you can constantly cast powers, just different ones. At higher levels when you get a high end omni/bio tool where the cooldowns are reduced to nothing it becomes a joke.
    – l I
    Commented Sep 6, 2012 at 12:31

I played through with a Biotic and the abilities get noticably better with upgrades - however you're never really a counterpart of a firemage, you're still mostly a support.

For example you get the ability to raise in the air the whole room of oponents or to pull them into black hole, but still you need your companions to actually shoot them. So you won't be throwing fireballs around in this game as a biotic, but you still get pretty powerful with disabling spells until end of the game.


The trick with the biotic in ME1 is that it requires you to:

  1. Play through the game with another class to unlock a better weapon (i.e. get 150 kills with the soldier to unlock assault rifles).
  2. Get a really high end biotool, like the Savant X, which drastically reduces cooldown duration and boosts power of your biotics.
  3. Be at very late game unless you level up a lot to get good skills up faster.

If done properly, the biotic is extremely overpowered in ME1, by the end of the game, my biotic had a permanent barrier (it recharges before it wears off/gets removed), can sling singularity and lift all over the place, and shoot anything I need to kill with an assault rifle. Between singularity, lift, and stasis (I went with the Bastion class), I was able to kill the final boss without it taking a single shot at me, which made it kind of boring :)

Some skills to focus on which comes very handy is push and lift, push enemies off of ledges and lift will keep them helpless.

  • 1
    How do you "play through the game with another class" and still have the Biotic class? I you pick your class at the start of the game. (I am planning on playing Mass Effect 2 when I am done with the first, so if you are saying I need to play it twice that is less desirable).
    – Vaccano
    Commented Dec 27, 2010 at 2:35
  • You are correct, this is referring to a second playthrough.
    – Steve V.
    Commented Dec 27, 2010 at 4:33
  • Also, depending on how anal you are in wanting to carry over the maximum benefits to ME2, you will have to play through multiple times to reach the max level. Or, you can download a profile from the mass effect saves site to save yourself the trouble.
    – l I
    Commented Dec 27, 2010 at 5:35
  • If you just want to blow through the game for the story and move on to ME2, stick with the fighter.
    – l I
    Commented Dec 27, 2010 at 5:36

Everybody's got their own playstyle, and you've got to choose your own, but my first playthrough was the soldier class, and even with the bonuses, I got sick of playing with the biotic class on my second play and gave up.

As yx01 said, yeah, you can lift targets up if you want, but that's really what the rest of your squad is there for. Until you get to a high level (and perhaps even then) the ability to put fire downrange, accurately, at high volumes, trumps basically everything.

Personally, if you really, really love being a biotic, you can do it on your first playthrough, but odds are, you won't have a good time. I feel that the game is really best played as a soldier first, and then any other class on your second trip through. With what you've said about playing ME2 after this, I'd recommend a soldier build.


I really enjoyed playing the biotic/soldier class (I believe it's the Vanguard). I could use a pistol and shotgun, and I specced in the sniper for my optional skill, so I could get my kills in. Once my biotics got high enough I was pretty unstoppable. I always included a high tech member in my party (Talia usually) and someone who could take a hit (Ashley) and we burned the place down. This was my second playthru tho, and I went as a soldier the first time and got most of my weapon achievements. I have them all now.

Just started ME2 this weekend. Awesome.


Over all the most powerful class in my opinion is the Soldier on the second play through with the barrier power added in. I played on insanity on a Soldier with the Bonus Ability of Barrier and found myself to basically be permanent god mode and I killed the final boss by beating him to death. The Combination of the Super Immunity and Barrier mean that you always have one up and at max level both absorb so much punishment it's insane. If they overlap you are essentially god mode.

The only time I died is if I just absorbed all the damage one of those geth vehicles can put out at once. This was on insanity, so I have no idea how it is on lower difficulties. Probably more crazy on easier settings.

I spent much of game basically trolling enemies and beating geth primes into the dirt with the butt of gun with this combination and I can't imagine a combo that is more overpowered.


Biotics in 1 can break the game if you use them right, but it's just like playing a low level mage--you aren't breaking anything at first level and you're a glass cannon. I put all my points early on into getting singularity, then maxing it out. If you do that, by 15th level or so you'll have a multi-target, long-range, area of effect power that's essentiall an instant kill for anyone near the epicenter and a hold effect on anyone on the edges. Stasis is also good, particularly if you later take the path that lets you damage stasised enemies. I killed the final boss with relative ease thanks to those 2 powers being maxed out.

Other useful things include Barrier, Lift, and Throw. I also enjoy getting enough combat armor to get shield boosts maxed out, then put in equipment to give my shields regeneration. The game was so easy by the end it was laughable, and so far only Biotic has been that easy for me.

Biotics lose fights badly when they lose, and they start off weak...but if you build them right in ME1, they are nearly game breaking.


I would say the most powerful class in ME1 is Soldier, specialized in Commando. Maxing out Pistol & Spectre/Commando. Essentially for no other reason than that the humble pistol as your only weapon with Marksman, Master Immunity, and low recharge times is powerful enough to (according to tvtropes.org) "break the game".

I gave it a try and it was certainly easy as pie. Invulnerable to all but melee and perhaps poison (negligible), rush and gun, weapon can be configured to never overheat. Of course the difficulty can always be turned up.

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