Mass Effect 3 Best Bonus Powers For Each Class

Powers in Mass Effect 3
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Mass Effect 3 Best Bonus Powers For Each Class

If only we were this cool in real life. Am I right?

In RPGs, players particularly love playing the game to optimize their character as much as possible with the right build. Except there are always several attractive options in games like Mass Effect that are built to prepare players for any situation. I believe that is incredibly subjective when it comes to what is best and what isn’t. Some options are worse than others, but sometimes a great game has options for everyone.

When building a character based on the chosen class, the number of power builds will depend on the player’s creativity. Especially when it comes to Bonus Powers. Except what is Bonus Powers?

For each class, there are a set of powers that players can use as they progress in-game. Which, of course, makes each class equally strong and weak in particular combat situations. However, in Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3, Bonus Powers was brought into the mix so that players can have the opportunity to round out their character build based on what they wish to accomplish in combat.

Each class has equal access to these Bonus Powers, yet each power brings something different to the table depending on which class you have chosen. Additionally, a player can only choose one bonus power. So the question is then: Which Bonus Power is best suited for me then? Well, let’s find out!

The Adept

Setting up combos is what Biotics are all about.

An entirely power-based class, this Biotic powerhouse is well versed with abilities that deal with crowd control, high damage output, and devastating combos. Except, what is missing in this class are abilities that can give more options in combat and more power combos that can damage a vast array of enemies. The biggest issue being that Adepts have trouble against protected enemies. Thankfully, these powers will give you, the player, more options.

For starters, the appeal of using powers like Singularity and Pull is to set up Biotic explosions on enemies. However, those powers aren't effective against protected enemies. Luckily, Stasis will allow players to set up these destructive combos with any foe. Progressing with Stasis Bubble upon leveling up this power will give players the ability to get the crowd control and combo set up that they would be looking for with any other power. Additionally, Dark Channel is a decent option for those who wish to line up combos on multiple foes.

For those who want a more rounded experience as an Adept rather than maximizing a Biotic combo build, Reave or Warp Ammo will give players access to press on more aggressively when pinned down. Specifically, Reave deals damage over time like Warp while also supplying a damage reduction bonus that dwarfs the effectiveness of Barrier. Otherwise, Warp Ammo will aid adepts in dealing damage to enemies without using up power and waiting for it to recharge.

Best Bonus Powers for Adepts:

  • Stasis
  • Reave
  • Warp Ammo
  • Dark Channel

The Engineer

You can thank the Protheans for a good power like Dark Channel

While more well-rounded for multiple combat situations, Engineers trade great power for versatility. This makes the class primarily a supportive role in combat. Unable to completely defend themselves in close range. That, fortunately, can be fixed.

Just as useful for Adepts and other classes in this article, Warp Ammo not only gives this class an ammo-type power-up, it also deals greater damage to a wider variety of enemies as opposed to Armor-Piercing Ammo. On a similar front, Inferno Grenade will give a class bereft of a grenade option an effective weapon against enemies who wander a little too close. Which will deal a great amount of damage, and set up a tech combo. Except when leveling up this ability, players should monitor the blast radius of the grenade to best suit this power to their needs. Carnage will also be ideal for setting up attacks with other powers like Overload.

On a more defensive note, Engineers might want to consider Defense Matrix. While this power will cost players who wish to use a powers-focused build, it gives the player a substantial bonus in damage reduction and shield regeneration. So to make up for its long recharge cooldown it would be wise to set up either Sentry Turrets or Combat Drones to give your Engineer room to breathe.

For those who want a more rounded experience as an Adept rather than maximizing a Biotic combo build, Reave or Warp Ammo will give players access to press on more aggressively when pinned down. Specifically, Reave deals damage over time like Warp while also supplying a damage reduction bonus that dwarfs the effectiveness of Barrier. Otherwise, Warp Ammo will aid adepts in dealing damage to enemies without using up power and waiting for it to recharge.

Best Bonus Powers for Engineers:

  • Warp Ammo
  • Inferno Grenade
  • Defense Matrix
  • Carnage

The Sentinel:

If this class weren't good enough already.

For a well-equipped class like the Sentinel, there are ways to make the class more balanced. By stacking defensive abilities or bringing in powers that set up more kills.

Tech Armor is the premier ability of the Sentinel-class, as it is favored for its shield boost and usage as a close-range weapon, allowing the class to serve more as a tank in combat. So, previously mentioned powers like Defense Matrix and Reave will permit players to layer their defense while waiting for Tech Armor to recharge.

As helpful as Reave is for damage reduction and combo setups, Defense Matrix can act as a backup to Tech Armor. While it may be a weaker version of Tech Armor, Defense Matrix can be leveled up to function similarly. So while it may not be as strong, Defense Matrix is a strong power that will give Sentinels added staying power in combat.

Additionally, powers like Stasis or Marksmen will fill in the more combat holes that the class has. Specifically, Stasis will give Sentinels the ability to halt and set up a target much like Singularity would for an Adept. As for those who need to gun enemies down with great effectiveness, Marksman is a poor man’s Adrenaline Rush that will give players the weapon accuracy they are looking for from big or smaller weapons. 

Best Bonus Powers for Sentinels:

  • Defense Matrix
  • Stasis
  • Marksman
  • Reave

The Vanguard

Offense is powerful, but defense is helpful.

For the most aggressive class, it would be predictable to use powers that compliment a straightforward power build. However, the best choice is to make up for the class’ weakness in defense.

Therefore, powers like Reave or Fortification will make for an excellent choice. While we are familiar with Reave at this point, Fortification is best suited for this class. Similar to Reave, this power gives you an added damage reduction with the addition of a potential force, damage, and melee damage bonus. That is best suited for a gun-ho class such as this one. With that said, there is one offensive option for those that would like to stay “balls against the wall.”

Specifically, Energy Drain is the way to give Vanguards a more direct route to fight against shielded foes without having to waste several abilities on a well-protected enemy. Plus, this will allow Vanguards to set up Tech bursts. Otherwise, Dark Channel will give the class more accessible to deal chained damage while sacrificing added benefits.

Best Bonus Powers for Vanguards:

  • Fortification
  • Energy Drain
  • Reave
  • Dark Channel

The Infiltrator

Bullets occasionally make a big difference.

So how do you make a stealthy class like The Infiltrator more effective? In this case, it depends on what tactic the player values most. Stealth, damage, or defense?

For those who greatly value the addition of Tactical Cloak when evading enemies or setting up shots, Decoy will give them an added edge. As straightforward as this ability sounds, the trade-off is dependent on the player’s affinity for power. Because without the proper set up this ability will be useless against enemies who have already spotted the player. So for those not confident in setting up assassinations, it might be best to use a power like Defense Matrix.

Otherwise, the addition of shield destroyer power or additional ammo types will help set up shots. Without access to Overload, Energy Drain gives Infiltrators more of an edge against shielded enemies. While Infiltrators have access to ammo-types like Cryo & Disruptor Ammo, Armor-Piercing or Warp Ammo gives snipers more options depending on their needs: penetrating cover or dealing damage to protected enemies.

Best Bonus Powers for Infiltrators:

  • Decoy
  • Defense Matrix
  • Armor-Piercing or Warp Ammo
  • Energy Drain

The Soldier

Sometimes the straight and narrow is what works best.

For this class, the best way to enhance the combat experience of a Soldier is to give them the option to deal with shielded enemies, with Energy Drain, or invest in staying power. Even more than the Vanguard, this class will benefit from any shielding ability.

Fortification gives Soldiers room to stave off incoming fire more comfortably while also dealing greater weapon damage. Defense Matrix will boost their shields without the concern of a recharge reduction to powers. Furthermore, Barrier gives players damage reduction while also providing crowd control similar to Tech Armor’s detonation.

In defense of not using other abilities more suited for other classes, such as Stasis or Reave, the Soldier class does not have Tech or Biotic powers to truly maximize the potential damage that those powers can set up. Inclusively, the Soldier class has access to every other ammo type, so using Warp or Armor-Piercing Ammo would be redundant. So for maximum effectiveness for this straightforward class, investing in the Soldier's strengths is recommended.

Best Bonus Powers for Soldiers:

  • Fortification
  • Defense Matrix
  • Barrier
  • Energy Drain

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From Johto to The Citadel, no journey is too treacherous or impossible for Tyler. True adventures seek the journey rather than the destination, or even the cheat codes.
Gamer Since: 1999
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Top 3 Favorite Games:Mass Effect 2, Star Wars: Battlefront, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - Dragonborn

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