Mass Effect 2

About this mod

Project Variety for ME2 is a major bug fix and overhaul mod for the original Mass Effect 2. Currently in Alpha but fully functional. Compatibility and lore accuracy is its foundations as well as transparency.

Permissions and credits

Project Variety for ME2 is a major bug fix and overhaul mod for the original Mass Effect 2. Currently in Alpha but fully functional. This means the mod is far from being done, but everything included is working as intended. Compatibility and lore accuracy is its foundations as well as transparency. Several popular mod authors have allowed for different compatibility patches to be created and this overhaul should work with most of them.


This mod REQUIRES to be installed with the latest ME3Tweaks Mod Manager version by Mgamerz. 6.3+ is REQUIRED. Make sure you let it update to the latest build after installation, in order to make sure the mod can be correctly installed.

The mod is in DLC form, so its installation is as simple as drag and drop the .7z file into the Mod Manager and let it work its magic. A prompt will show indicating which parts of the mod will be installed depending on your game setup. Install Project Variety for ME2 as your LAST DLC mod. This mod touches many files in the game and will autopatch based on your previously installed mods. You CANNOT manually select patches as that will lead to serious incompatibilities due to the amount of mod combinations PV accounts for.

Many options are optional to be installed and some REQUIRE you owning certain official DLC to work. The manager will make it clear on each. If you can't select an option, make sure you own the required DLC or mod and that it has been installed BEFORE PV. Manual installations of Project Variety for ME2 WON'T be supported. ME2Recalibrated IS NOT and WON'T BE compatible (although it is rendered irrelevant with this mod).

This mod is best played along with Early Recruitment and Expanded Shepard Armory.

Patches require the following mod versions to properly work:
  • Casual Hubs 1.1.2
  • Early Recruitment 1.1
  • Expanded Shepard Armory 3.0
  • Femshep Appearance Consistency Project 2.0
  • Same Gender Romances 1.3
  • TIM Blur Studios Tribute Mesh Mod 1.0


  • The Illusive Man’s Secretary now dresses a Cerberus and not an Alliance uniform. Her face is also now that of Brooks.
  • Miranda now also dresses in black for the introductory scene.
  • The Illusive Man now changes outfits throughout the story, showing he is wealthy enough to have an expanded wardrobe. Models by Mellin.
  • Miranda and Wilson now wear new outfits and masks during the wake-up scene. Miranda keeps the medical outfit for 2 of her logs. The last log on the docking bay remains with the changes introduced on the previous version of the mod.
  • Several corpses of Lazarus Station are now of Cerberus scientists, reducing the number of officers and increasing the number of medical staff. Moreover, a corpse of a N7 soldier has been corrected to be a Cerberus aligned scientist.
  • Tali should no longer be killable by using the Grenade Launcher against her on Freedom’s Progress. This solves the game skipping her with Veetor in the odd scenario in which the grenades would have killed her.
  • The Normandy is now entirely unlocked since your first arrival (DLC rooms still require owning their respective DLC to be unlocked). This means you can use the research station since the very beginning. Mordin is still required for squadmates to offer their research projects. Rooms that had gear brought by or with squadmates, will lack their respective belongings until they are on board.
  • The Normandy’s Armory has been upgraded and now includes an armory locker, medigel and power cells to grab before your next mission. They will fully refill your stocks.
  • Cerberus Human Resources Department has recognized that Shepard’s team was lackluster and new excited recruits have joined the Normandy crew. Their fate is on the Commander’s hands now. In-game events will update their locations.
  • Introduced new Cerberus scientist textures by ThaliaGraces based on the Invasion comic. Mass Effect 3 meshes were introduced to compensate UV mapping changes (textures based on Legendary Edition ones which use the ME3 models).
  • The Hammerhead now shows on the cargo bay during the endgame if the player had previously acquired it.
  • Restored the correct functionality for Gardner’s cooking pot, which now will only show if he is onboard and if he is given provisions, as originally intended.
  • Moreover, after finishing Normandy: Special Ingredients, Rupert will provide the crew with sushi as long as he remains on board.
  • Fixed the lack of lighting, which made it look black, of the Serrice Ice Brandy of Dr. Chakwas. Its model has been replaced with the brandy bottle of Mass Effect Andromeda. Moreover, the bottle is now consistent across the game, not being a can on Afterlife and a laptop on the Dark Star. Purchased brandy will now always disappear from the bar.
  • Fixed a bug with Dr. Chakwas in which players would be booted out of conversation mode mid dialogue during the post Serrice Brandy conversation. Moreover, Chakwas no longer changes position during said line and both her and her chair stay where they are meant to.
  • Joker now wears a Cerberus uniform when approaching the Migrant Fleet and not Alliance regs.
  • All Citadel Hub asari now have correct blue hands (previously several had human bodies).
  • Every asari on the Citadel Hub is now unique in both their faces and outfits.
  • Diversified outfits for turians throughout the Citadel Hub, including the removal of armors from the Dark Star bartender and Presidium Groundskeeper.
  • Diversified male human outfits and faces throughout the Citadel Hub.
  • Corrected several mismatching female human eyebrows throughout the Citadel Hub. Diversified hairstyles and removed ugly dirty and poor looking female overalls in favor of more fancy looking outfits.
  • Salarians on the Dark Star no longer dress as diplomats and instead use suits. Each of them has unique looks on both faces and outfits. Salarians on level 26 no longer wear armor looking attire and have gotten diversified outfits and faces.
  • All Hanar in the Presidium are now animated.
  • The Skycar parked on the Presidium, seen from Anderson’s office, now has textures (previously it had none, nor a material assigned).
  • The shelf in Anderson’s office has been replaced by another without broken shaders. Additionally, the Kaidan picture has been replaced by that of Kahlee Sanders.
  • Deleted an unused and misnamed Talk to Grunt point that served no purpose in the Citadel.
  • Now Anderson will look as in Mass Effec1 and 2 OR as in Mass Effect 3 for all his appearances depending on installation option. This involves textures, models, and materials. He will look exactly as in Mass Effect 3 if chosen that option. If he is not Councilor, he will be wearing his unique dress blues from Mass Effect 3.
  • David Anderson is now referred as Admiral Anderson and not Captain Anderson, matching what every character mention in dialogue (except when Shepard is recounting the aftermath of Sovereign’s attack, as he/she is unaware of the promotion). If Councilor, his nametag is changed to Councilor Anderson.
  • The Citadel Council now shows their names on their subtitle for players playing with them on.
  • Unattended Keeper terminals on the Citadel now have keepers working on them. Please do not disturb them.
  • Some turian and human C-Sec officers on the Citadel are now female turian agents. An extra pair of turian (male and female agents) have also been added to the Zakera lower level.
  • Incredibly happy krogans can now be found dancing on the Dark Star with a female turian citizen and a volus along with unique Mass Effect 1 dancing animations.
  • Restored all ambient dialogues from the Presidium Groundskeeper, including femshep exclusive lines.
  • All living souls on the Citadel now cast dynamic shadows which react to their animation movements and changes of lighting. It includes the Zakera Ward, Presidium, as well as both Loyalty Missions happening on the Citadel.
  • Zakera Café now sells an Aquarium VI for ship captains that neglect basic feeding needs of their fish.
  • Changed the pictures for “High-Grade Provision” on Zakera Café with its Legendary Edition counterpart, as well as the Serrice Ice Brandy and different drinks offered on Illium and Tuchanka from a stock photo of real food to a series of bottles from Mass Effect Andromeda.
  • Citadel Souvenirs no longer has a collection of binders on its shelves and instead has a collection of gift packages, shirts, and memorabilia from Mass Effect 3 Multiplayer special event objectives.
  • Fixed some text related store bugs on Saronis Applications by Herobrine.
  • Restored the introductory line for the Volus ship vendor when being asked during Citadel: Crime in Progress.
  • Fixed the infamous Garrus Loyalty Mission end bug in which there was no background to be rendered, leading to the “solitaire” effect. Asari on that level are also given blue hands.
  • Changed all models in Thane’s loyalty mission at 800 Blocks to use the best Level of Details (LODs) Models. Fixed several asari who had human bodies. A Cerberus uniformed human chatting with an asari was given a different casual outfit. All Blood Pack Krogans are given a new armor since the codex clearly states that Blood Pack are not allowed in Citadel Space, nor ever do bodyguard jobs. All characters on this level now cast shadows which are dynamic.
  • Packages for Ish is now available on your first visit to Omega and now always is completed when convincing Ish to drop his plans.
  • All Collector and Reaper related husks and abominations now use their Mass Effect 3 models. Husks on Aequitas remain unchanged to reflect a different origin, like those from Mass Effect 1. Husk textures by ClearanceClarence.
  • Several wrongly set materials on hair and body meshes of frozen colonists on Horizon have been corrected to their intended ones.
  • Illium Landing sequence will now always play, and not just in the first landing, bringing it in line with landings on any other hub worlds. Fixed by beccatoria.
  • Conrad Verner is finally, for the first time fully fixed. Importing is now correctly detected and both the asari outside of Eternity AND Conrad will react accordingly depending on if Conrad was previously charmed or intimidated on Mass Effect 1. Conrad will now only wear N7 Armor if previously charmed and will be extremely happy to see Shepard even if kicked in the quad! Alternatively, he will wear mercenary armor and act like a jerk if previously intimidated. A savegame from Mass Effect 1 Recalibrated is required for proper flag checking as the bug originated in Mass Effect 1.
  • Lizbeth Baynham will now only send her thank you email after you have helped Shiala or the Feros colonist, not before under rare circumstances.Restored Kirrahe’s email he was supposed to send to Shepard if he survived Virmire.
  • N7: Javelin Missiles now correctly states on the journal your choice on saving the spaceport or the colony.
  • Zaeed can now be abandoned on Zorya before the Suicide Mission and renegades now also have the option to intimidate him to gain his loyalty if they chose to save the refinery workers.
  • At Fortack’s lab on Tuchanka, now you can not only punch the pyjak but adopt it instead.
  • Racht’s Wares have finally updated their catalogue and now correctly display the Heavy Damping Gauntlets picture and do not try to sell them to you letting you think you are buying Stabilization Gauntlets anymore. Original fix idea by Herobrine.
  • If you get Urz to like you and follow you around Tuchanka, he will now join you on the Normandy too, if he is on good health condition. Should you decide to visit Tuchanka again, he will join ashore.
  • Lair of the Shadow Broker email now only triggers not only after Horizon, but also after you have helped Liara on Illium and dealt with the Observer (the outcome does not matter). Once you read the email, the option to tell Liara about going after the Broker will appear. This restores the original intended flow for the quests before Lair of the Shadow Broker was decided to be a DLC.
  • Liara now wears different outfits throughout her story. Consistency options available for players who own Lair of the Shadow Broker. Now Liara will look as in Mass Effect 1, Lair of the Shadow Broker or Mass Effect 3 for the entirety of the game depending on installation option. This involves textures, models, and materials. She will be exactly as seen on each game.
  • The Shadow Broker dossiers now have Admiral Hackett’s picture from the Mass Effect 3 Codex instead of an Alliance logo.
  • The Shadow Broker Ship Model notification will not keep showing up on level reload or following visits to the ship.
  • Admiral Hackett now wears his unique body model and textures from Mass Effect 3.
  • Oriana now looks like Miranda’s twin. She uses unique face textures by Ellise to give her a younger look and a unique hairstyle by Anto and ported to upk format by Kittentails. New optional Oriana from my old standalone mod which keeps her original hairstyle, while still making her look like Miranda.
  • Jacob’s Loyalty Mission now registers the fate of Ronald Taylor. This will fix the dialogue after speaking with the Illusive Man and dialogues on Mass Effect 3.
  • Users of Casual Hubs mod can now benefit from new casual looks for Garrus, Jacob, Mordin, Samara and Zaeed.
  • Fixed several props which were clearly misplaced and clipping through other objects and/or floating. More will definitely be added as development of the mod continues.
  • Fixed a text limit in all personalization locker's description boxes which prevented players that play in German, Russian, Polish, Hungarian, French or Italian to see the stats of the Blood Dragon Armor as well as several of Expanded Shepard Armory’s gear. Fixed by Strife and Herobrine.
  • Humans found stabbed on Dragon Teeth inside the Derelict Reaper now wear Cerberus uniforms instead of civilian clothes.
  • Normandy Crash Site DLC now only triggers after you play one main mission after Freedom’s Progress, giving the illusion that it takes Shepard to do something somewhere before Hackett can confirm Shepard’s alive status. Consequently, the Amada system will not be accessible until Hackett sends the email. As a result, a new automatic patch for Early Recruitment mod has been added.
  • Overlord is now triggered after Horizon AND after you have acquired the Hammerhead, which means the first quest of Project Firewalker must also be done before Cerberus sends the email about Overlord. This change of trigger is optional upon installation but recommended.
  • Arrival now can be triggered at 4 different times which are set on installation. This includes vanilla behavior (post-Horizon), after the Collector Ship, after the Reaper IFF is acquired, and after BOTH the Suicide Mission is done and the Shadow Broker has been dealt with.
  • The Cerberus Operative on Lorek now wears Cerberus Assault Armor if the player owns the Cerberus Weapon and Armor DLC.
  • Holorecordings of Cerberus security and science personnel on Pragia now wear Cerberus appropriate gear if the player owns the Cerberus Weapon and Armor DLC. Optional change.
  • Legion’s bodyguard will now stop wearing random black armor not used by any other Cerberus NPC ever on the trilogy. He will be given Cerberus casual regs or the Cerberus Assault Armor (with and without helmet) if the player chooses so.
  • Players have the option to add Cerberus Assault Armor to 2 crewmates during the Collector Attack to the Normandy. In specific those are a crew member on the CIC seen using a Grenade Launcher and Hawthorn, the crew member who helps Joker on Life Support before being ragrolled.
  • New option to mute the Codex narrator for those who prefer to read it without being distracted with the narration.
  • New datapads have been introduced around with information to be read and/or interacted with.
  • Choosing the fate of David Archer on Overlord now grants 30 morality points. Paragon or renegade depends on the option chosen. Before, no morality was being awarded.
  • New Kaidan option for him to have a beard and sport one of his unique armors from the third entry for his appearance on
    Horizon. He remains with his vanilla look for the prologue.
  • Restored the following codex entries: Thermal Clips, M-100 Grenade Launcher, M-920 Cain, Drell. They unlock at appropriate
    times, a new playthrough will be required if passed through their unlock point.

Recommended mods

Early Recruitment by beccatoria: this mod allows early recruitment of Thane, Samara and Tali. Thane, Samara and the Illium Hub are available immediately after Freedom's Progress. Tali is available before Horizon.

Expanded Shepard Armory by KhaarMachinima: this mod unlocks helmetless versions of the official DLC armors to players who wish to use them and see their Shepard's faces; as well as adds additional armors, headgear and casual outfits ported from Mass Effect 1, 3 and Andromeda.

New Armor Colors
 by Jade: this mod adds 595 new colors to Tint 1, Tint 2, and Pattern Colors in the Armor Customization screen.

No Headgear for DLC Armors by ThaliaGraces: this mod removes the headgear from the Alternate Appearance Pack armors.

Casual Hubs for ME2 by rondeeno: this mod allows Shepard to wear casual clothes on the Citadel, Omega, and Illium, and gives certain squadmates casual appearances as well.

Same-Gender Romances for ME2 by rondeeno: this mod allows Tali and Thane to be romanced by both male and female Shepard, utilizing unused dialogue in the game files. It also fixes issues with imported same-gender Ashley and Kaidan romances if using the same mod and allows and restores other same-gender content whenever possible.

Femshep and Miranda Romance for ME2 by Mentlegen: this mod adds the ability for FemShep players to romance Miranda in ME2. It unlocks unused romance audio and re-purposes dialogue from other areas of the game to replace all romance dialogue that was never recorded for FemShep.

FemShep and Jack Romance for ME2 by Mentlegen: this mod adds the ability for FemShep players to romance Jack in ME2. This mod unlocks unused romance audio and re-purposes dialogue from other areas of the game to replace all romance dialogue that was never recorded for FemShep.

Femshep Appearance Consistency Project for ME2 by anshela: this mod ports ME3's Default Femshep headmorph into ME2. It is used on my femshep screenshots of this mod. Both mods have thoroughly been tested together, so there shouldn't be any issues related to meshes.

In order to get the best visual experience and quality, I highly recommend using ALOT for ME2, by CreeperLava and MEUITM2, by Catachrism (including his amazing mesh edits). My mod is fully compatible with them. Remember that content mods must be always installed BEFORE ALOT.


Use the Mod Manager to remove the mod. Savegames aren't dependent of it, so it can be mostly safely removed and/or added at any point during your game. Just remember ALOT's instructions if you are also using that mod. For the triggering DLC options to work, the mod must be always present and BEFORE you arrive to the Normandy for the first time. Installing the mod after Freedom's Progress will make many options to simply not work.

Known Issues

Although branded as an Alpha, all implemented changes should be properly working. However, if you find any bugs, please submit them by clearly specifying what happened and your mod setup. Mod Manager Diagnostics will be requested, so please, submit them before hand as explained here.

There is an issue with a very edge case scenario involved by killing Zaeed before the Suicide Mission. The Suicide Mission can only be launched after the game detects 8 people have been recruited. Otherwise, the IFF never gets ready, and the crew isn't abducted. If you have 8 people, the crew is abducted, then do Zaeed's loyalty and you kill him, and then start with 7 people the Suicide Mission and someone gets killed along the way, some cutscenes will duplicate one of the alive squadmates to fill in the missing person. It's just a visual bug and doesn't cause any other effect; so, you know, always launch the suicide mission with the intended number of at least 8 squadmates.

Version 0.2: it has been detected random and non-reproducible crashes on the Citadel which I believe are linked to not letting the new ambients to finish and moving far away from the characters which would cause their area unloading. However, some testers have not been able to trigger them at all. If facing these issues, quick saving on the stores where these ambients happen and quick loading will make the characters leave, if you want to skip their dialogues.

Currently the mod is only localized in English. It might work with other languages, but it has been untested. Any fixes and changes related to dialogue and text WILL ONLY work on the English localization.


12/30/2021 - Fixes the possibility of landing on Alchera before scanning the Anomaly, thus not leaving a persistent note on the galaxy map if landed before scanning the planet.
09/04/2021 - Hotfix to truly fix the Galaxy Map
08/29/2021 - Hotfix to the Galaxy Map
07/31/2021 - Emergency Hotfix for the Prologue non/patches version
06/29/2021 - Update 0.2
05/21/2021 - Emergency Hotfix to prevent a Genesis Patch from installing under a certain mod configuration.
05/19/2021 - Emergency Hotfix for Overlord Triggering
05/14/2021 - Original Public Release 0.1 Alpha


You may contact me through the Nexus Forums.

Credits & Acknowledgements

  • Scottina123: special thanks to the man who patiently helped me through my first steps into modding within the Mass Effect world. Thank you for keeping being an inspiration and encouraging me to take on the role of following your footsteps for Mass Effect 2.
  • Mellin: thank you for allowing me to include your Illusive Man, Samara, Mordin and female turians you have made for Project Variety 3, as well as your Anderson face textures, as part of this mod.
  • ClearanceClarence: thank you for allowing me to include in this mod your high-quality textures for husks.
  • Ellise: for allowing your wonderful younger Miranda textures to be part of my original Oriana mod which is now included here.
  • Anto: for creating the hair used by Oriana now.
  • Kittentails: for porting the Oriana hair to upk format.
  • PoophairJones: thank you for having open permissions on your mods and thus allowing me to include an amazing Liara casual outfit.
  • JeanLuc761: thank you for having open permissions on your textures and thus allowing me to include Liara's face.
  • voodooseason: thank you for allowing to use your fabulous beardy Kaidan textures on other mods, including mine.
  • ThaliaGraces: thank you very much for all the extra upscales and new textures you have worked on for this mod. Your technical knowledge on textures and materials keeps saving the day plenty of times. Thank you for the testing and all the brainstorming, a pleasure working with you every time, as always.
  • Jenya66: thank you for all the support, new models and textures and several seam fixes. You keep being my favorite Pokémon. Let's hope we start resting better soon.
  • Beccatoria: thank you for all of your expertise in helping me fix long standing bugs on Mass Effect 2, as well as on creating my newly included conditionals on this mod. But most of all, thank you for working on Early Recruitment alongside so both of this mods can work together and offer an entire new experience to players. For the new update, thank you for your invaluable testing and bug reporting. You keep being the best.
  • Ellia/Anshela: thank you for all your testing and bug finding. Your fish sacrifices won't be forgotten in the name of science. Also thank you for allowing patches with FACP to exist.
  • CreeperLava: thank you for allowing the addition of your upscaled Cerberus Casuals textures from ALOT for ME3.
  • Strife: thank you for writing about our new favorite pet on the Normandy. A pleasure to always get your writing within my mods.
  • Catachrism: thank you for allowing patched versions with your amazing mesh mods to exist.
  • Rondeeno: thank you for allowing patched versions with both Same Gender and Casual Hubs. Moreover, thank you for letting me include new casual outfits for the squadmates.
  • Herobrine24: thank you for your understanding and allowing me to include your store fixes on this mod so EAS would not override my hub changes.
  • Mgamerz and the ME3TweaksFork developers: thank you for actively working on the modding tools for the trilogy, as well as on implementing new features on the Mod Manager for a better installation of this mod.

    Other mods by me

    Hairy Sheploo: allows players to add a new hairstyle and/or beard to the default male Shepard, based on Dutch model Mark Vanderloo. All hairstyles plus the beard are custom meshes with new textures, meaning this mod provides 3D hair options and aren't just painted over his face. Mass Effect 2 version.


    The mod is provided as is. By downloading and installing it you decide to use it at your own risk. Incompatibilities produced by installation on pirated copies of the game will not be assisted, as well as those installations over an ALOT modified game.
    You may use this mod as you wish but I kindly ask you to credit me for my work.
    Please, do not re-host this file without my explicit permission.