by Tore Andersen

Mass Effect 2 is the second game in the legendary Space Action-RPG series from BioWare, released in 2010 and still a masterpiece. Technically the game is excellent, only the textures, models and world detail show the games ago a little. This project will enhance the visuals and effects, plus optionally add a new custom ReShade for better lighting, AA and image clarity. The guide has step-by-step instructions, no modding experience needed.


1: Requirements
2: DLCs
3: Mod installation
4: Screenshots
5: Artwork


1 - Requirements

1: Mass Effect 2 (version 1.2) with Cerberus Network DLC.
*The Steam version comes already updated, and has the Cerberus Network DLC already installed.
2: Sign up at the Nexus. It's free and it takes 2 minutes. (LINK)

Game Update 1.2: (LINK) *For the non-Steam version.
Download and install.


2 - DLC Activation/Installation

Activating the Cerberus Network:
Start the game and connect to the Cerberus Network. This will require you to make an online EA account (Origin Store Account). You can make it from within the game, and you don't ever need to use it. Quite silly, but whatever, it's done in a sec.
*If you have the Steam version of the game, you can find the Cerberus Network Key-Code is in your Steam library.

In-game options, set Auto Login to "Yes", so you don't need to log into the Cerberus Network every time you start the game. *When you have done this the first time, it will work regardless if you have internet connection or not.

Other DLCs. (Optional but recommended):

All other DLCs can be downloaded here: (LINK)
*They are free to download and install, but you need to buy them in the Origin store for them to work in the game: (LINK)

DLC List:
Firewalker Pack
Zaeed The Price of Revenge
Cerberus Weapon and Armor
Normandy Crash Site
Cerberus Arc Projector
Lair of the Shadow Broker
Kasumi Stolen Memory
Firepower Pack
Aegis Pack
Equalizer Pack
Alternate Appearance Pack 1 (Garrus, Thane, Jack)
Alternate Appearance Pack 2 (Tali, Grunt, Miranda)

Download: Binkw32 proxy DLL (LINK)
Download the file for MASS Effect 2, and unpack into: Mass Effect 2\Binaries\
*Backup the existing file first, just in case.
These two files makes it possible to load mods as DLCs.

Note: If (ONLY IF) the game display "Authentication failed" after you bought the DLC in the store, download and run this patch: (DOWNLOAD)
Unpack the file anywhere and run the tool, that's it.
If the game still display "Authentication failed", download this patch too: (DOWNLOAD)
Block Mass Effect 2 in your firewall so the game can't connect to the internet. Then make a backup of "\Binaries\MassEffect2.exe". Now download and unpack the patch into the game-folder.


3 - Mod Installation

ME3Tweaks Mod Manager (LINK)
Download and install, then run the program

SIllium Landing Movie Mod
Download and unpack to a temporary folder, then run the installer.

Same-Gender Romances for ME2 (LINK) *Works with save-games from Mass Effect 1, if you played using Same-Gender for ME1
Download the file and drag it into the ME3Tweaks Mod Manager window. Follow instructions to install.
*This mod is of course only needed, if you care for same-gender romance.

Texture Mods
Download these mod files, but don't unpack / install them yet
*Some of the mods are made for Mass Effect 3, but they work perfectly for Mass Effect 2 as well

Misc. Complexion Tweaks (LINK)
Download "Illusive Man Complexion Tweak"

Jacob Complexion Tweak (LINK)

broShep High Quality textures (LINK)

femShep High Quality textures (LINK)
Download "Illusive Man Complexion Tweak"

WpnCarnifex (LINK)

WpnKatana (LINK)

WpnPredator (LINK)

WpnShuriken (LINK)

Weapon Mantis M-92 (LINK)

HR Weapon Textures (LINK)

A Lot Of Textures (LINK)
Download 1 "ALOT for ME2 11.0"
*Unpack the file to a temporary folder, but don't run the program yet. I'll refer to this folder as the "ALOT" folder.
Download 2 "ALOT for ME2 11.1 - Update"
Download 3 "Improved Static Lighting for ME2"
*Copy the two zip files into the "Downloaded_Mods" folder, inside the ALOT folder. Don't unpack them.
1: Move all the downloaded texture-mod files into the "Downloaded_Mods" folder, inside the ALOT folder.
2: Now run the installer.
3: Go to settings and select Show Mass Effect files only, by unselecting Mass Effect 1 & 3:

The installer should now look like this, with 12 check marks.

*If you don't have all 12 checkmarks, double-check the files you downloaded, and make sure they are copied to the right folder.
*Don't download "A Lot of Videos for ME2". The installer will only recognize the 1080p version, not the 4K version. Just leave that mod red and unchecked.

4: Click "Install for ME2"

Follow installation instructions. (Remember to check everything but "User Files" before building & installing.)

This will take about 20-30 minutes, even on a fast computer. When done, you can delete the temporary folder.

A Lot of Videos (ALOV) for ME2 (LINK)
Download any version (I recommend the 4K resolution), and drag the file into the ME3Tweaks Mod Manager window. Follow instructions to install.

Mass Effect 2 to dark FIX
Download and unpack the file into the game-folder. Overwrite.

Vignette Remover (LINK)
Download and unpack to a temporary folder, then move the content of the "Vanilla" folder into the following path inside the game-folder: "\BioGame\CookedPC\". Overwrite.

Download and unpack into the Mass Effect game folder.


That's it. Mass Effect 2 is ready for launch


*Note for Windows 10 users:
The Creators update for Windows 10 introduced a wide variety of problems, especially for games with custom renders like ENB or ReShade. If you encounter problems like messed-up graphics or extreme slowdowns, then follow the steps in number 4 here: (LINK) *Pay special attention to the RivaTuner settings.
If this doesn't work, then Windows is somehow still blocking it. Search Google for alternative ways of forcing Windows 10 to use custom d3d files. If you are unable to fix it, then you will have to uninstall the ReShade and play without. Just delete the d3d9.dll file but keep everything else.


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For more game modification projects and guides, please visit the main page. New and old games are added regularly



4 - M.2.E.P. Screenshots

   ReShade                                           Original                                                 ReShade                                             Original









5 - Artwork












Mass Effect Game Info

Mass Effect 2 is a science fiction action role-playing game developed by BioWare, published and released by Electronic Arts in 2010. The first 3 games are about an officer/commander named Shepard, who can be either male or female depending on the players choice. The goal is to save the galaxy from some powerful robots known as the Reapers, or at least do what's possible to fight them.

All three games have received several awards for their rich story and incredible universe. The attention to detail is astonishing and the atmosphere and world is very interesting and immersive.