New Mass Effect 2 Build: Soldier / Shock Trooper

The Shock Trooper is all about keeping your Soldier alive. Unlike Mass Effect 1, the Shock Trooper is not really a tank. Immunity, the best tank skill, was removed from the game. Most of the passive health bonuses are also gone. However, Shock Troopers can still be built to survive much longer than other classes.

Class: Soldier

Specialization: Shock Trooper

Powers:
There are two possible squad point distributions in which no squad points are left over. The first build specializes in 5 maxed powers. The second build has points in all 7 powers but only has 3 maxed powers. It is your choice which one to go with. I recommend trying both if you like the Shock Trooper specialization.

Specialized Well-rounded
  • 4 Hardened Adrenaline Rush
  • 4 Concussive Blast
  • 4 Heavy Disruptor Ammo
  • 1 Incendiary Ammo
  • 0 Cryo Ammo
  • 4 Combat Mastery (Shock Trooper)
  • 4 Heavy Barrier (Bonus Power)
  • 4 Hardened Adrenaline Rush
  • 4 Concussive Blast
  • 4 Combat Mastery (Shock Trooper)
  • 3 Disruptor Ammo
  • 3 Incendiary Ammo
  • 3 Cryo Ammo
  • 2 Heavy Barrier (Bonus Power)
You lose access to Cryo Ammo; however, a tank only cares about surviving.Incendiary Ammo only gets 1 rank, but it can still catch enemies on fire just as easily as rank 4.Heavy Disruptor Ammo and Concussive Blast make your Soldier the best against synthetics and husks. Barrier only at 2 ranks costs you some survivability.You get access to all three ammo powers, though none of them are maxed.Your Soldier is able to deal with everything except enemy Barriers, leaving you with less holes to fill by squad mates.

Combat:
The basic idea is to to keep Barrier up at all times, wait until your power cooldown is up, attack until your Barrier is down, then use Hardened Adrenaline Rush to keep your health up.

Hardened Adrenaline Rush only reduces health damage, not shield or barrier damage. This means to get the maximum effect out of it you should only use it when your shields or barrier close to gone. I recommend not using Hardened Adrenaline Rush to charge into enemies as you become too vulnerable when it wears off.

For the ammo powers, it’s simply a matter of the enemies you are facing. If they are mostly shielded or synthetic, use Disruptor Ammo. If they are mostly armored or organic, use Incendiary Ammo. If they have no protections use Cryo Ammo.

That only leaves biotic Barriers to deal with, and Concussive Blast does pretty good damage against biotic Barriers. You should complement your character with biotic squad mates to deal with this small vulnerability.

Concussive Blast is also great against melee enemies such as husks and varren. Against armored or shielded enemies it will do a quick stun, but not very long. Use other powers in against protected enemies.

Alternate Bonus Powers:
Geth Shield – This is similar to Barrier but rank 4 can increase weapon damage, so you get some shielding and extra damage in one power.
Fortification – This is also similar, but I don’t recommend it. Both Barrier and Geth Shield can be boosted by research projects on the Normandy. Fortification doesn’t have any associated research projects, so it ends up being weaker than the other two. Fortification looks very similar to Immunity in Mass Effect 1 but is far weaker. Only take this power for looks.
Energy Drain – This is similar to the other shielding powers, but depends on the enemies you are facing. It basically combines the effects of Overlord with Geth Shield. The damage it does to shields and synthetics is added on to your shield. It can be used to restore your shield if empty but also can boost it beyond the normal limit. However, a more offensive power may not fit with the Shock Trooper survivability theme.
Stasis – If you want a little more control in battle you can take Stasis to divide and conquer enemies. It can be used no matter what protections the enemy has. Use it on the most dangerous enemies while you take out the weaker ones. Then finish them off without their cannon fodder getting in the way. Note that this power requires the Lair of the Shadow Broker DLC which costs $10 in Microsoft or Bioware points.
Flashbang Grenade – This bonus power is a good alternative to Concussive Shot. It does similar damage and also incapacitates enemies to help you survive. The points you spend in Concussive Shot can instead be spread around to other powers for more versatility. Note that this power requires the Kasumi: Secret Memory DLC which costs $7 in Microsoft or Bioware points.

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