A vanguard guide for the UME3 contest.
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Every class has its own unique advantages and disadvantages, and each class also has it's own style of approaching combat. The Vanguard is very unique in that it feeds off chaos and close quarters combat. Though Shepard will fare well on his own, because of the lack of shield-breaking powers he needs to pick his allies well.
I prefer toying with the Collectors using the Vanguard, and like using a well rounded Mordin Solus and the always useful Miranda, or if you enjoy playing with enemies using biotics, Thane is an awesome choice. Why Mordin? Aside from being able to team up with Shepard to freeze and burn the collectors all the way to their grave, who doesn't like Mordin??
So the obvious benefits of being the Vanguard? The Charge is quick and painful; able to leave welts on rocks. It also replenishes your barriers allowing you to jump in battle head on or take the defensive route and back tracking quickly to avoid more damage, leaving the shields to absorb the shots while Shepard gets in cover.
Here's a tactic that never grows old: Use the cryo ammo or Mordin's Cryo power to freeze an enemy in place before literally annihilating them with a Charge, shields replenished and ready to go.
Incendiary Ammo scorches through armor like nothing, especially up close with the Shotgun. You really can't go wrong Charging into battle with a Shotgun blasting rounds at every enemy that blinks.
Also, the Cryo Ammo is useful in most any situation. So if fire isn't your thing and there aren't armored opponents, keep this ammo power active.
Some don't acknowledge how powerful and useful the Pull and Shockwave powers are probably because they're only effective on unprotected foes, but these powers can set up the battle field right from the start. And like I said earlier, if you decide to make Barbie Dolls out of space mercenaries, Thane will bring even more exciting gameplay as well as useful tactics to employ.
After upgrading Pull to Pull Field, you can suspend several enemies in the air at a time, allowing you to either focus on more threatening foes or simply plucking them off while their helpless bodies float in limbo.
Use an ally with Throw after activating Pull and the Collectors are sure to be puking in a brown bag after they land -- if they survive.
Shockwave is basically vital against Husks, and is still useful against other enemies -- especially those who enjoy flanking you or who prefer attacking in large groups.
It will send them all flying in different directions potentially tossing them off the edge, giving Shepard time to run to safety or lay down the law with some biotic firepower.
One should also not forget the Shotgun does surprisingly well against any and all protection an enemy can use, further adding on to the fact the Vanguard is a CQC class at heart. With an enemy using armor, Mordin can Incinerate them which usually degrades their armor all the way, if not close to it.
Afterwards you can Pull them and what you do next is all up to how you play. Either way they won't be around for long.
Honestly, the reason I enjoy Vanguard so much is because I really like toying with the enemies and I've never played another game that allowed me to do this like Mass Effect.
Freeze them, charge up close and shatter them. Pull them towards you only to Throw them off the highest buildings in the galaxy. Husks climbing over the ledge? Eh, a Shockwave will toss em off the side if a Throw or Pull doesn't first.
Many classes are strong, but few can play with the enemies mind like the Vanguard.. especially with Dominate as a Bonus Power.
Don't be afraid to charge into battle blind, just be aware of when not to. For example, three enemies with shields attack you; Charge away to boost your barriers because if you Charge to them, you probably won't make it. Also, you're not a Soldier so try not to leave your allies behind; they'll have your back when you get cocky and attack a few charging Krogan.
In the end, the Vanguard can prove to be one of the most frustrating and entertaining classes available but only to those willing to learn the ropes and those tactical enough to pull it off. Is playing air hockey with alien carcasses appealing to you? It is to the Vanguard.
Vanguard for Your Dysfunction
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