N7 Piranha shotgun with Extended Barrel mod and Shotgun Shredder Mod. This works for both Gold and Platinum, as my Piranha is level X. Alternatives would include any powerful and lightweight weapon. I optimize for close range only with this build.
Bronze/Silver/Gold: Structural Ergonomics V Gear mod. This is to counterbalance the weight of the Piranha, reducing cooldowns by 15%. Platinum: Structural Ergonomics V Gear mod, Cyclonic Modulator III Armor mod or Adrenaline Module III Armor mod, Warp Ammo IV Ammo mod, Shotgun Rail Amp III Weapon mod. This will be explained later.
Across all difficulty levels, the basic strategy with this character is to devastate enemies at close range. Activate Tech Armor, activate Annihilation Field, then run in close to enemies, hit them with Warp, parry with the Piranha, and repeat. This class is good for crowd control, and excels greatly in one-on-one close range combat. The Tech Armor is only to give the Biotic Annihilator an added 50% damage reduction bonus, essentially making your character twice as hard to kill. Because of this, the Tech Armor is really what makes Annihilation field usable, and is the basis of effectiveness with this character. I will have this on for the whole match, as the detonation of the Tech Armor is not very powerful, being ranked for damage reduction. The Tech Armor also slows power use, so rank six of the power can really go either way, I just prefer the added damage reduction over the alternative of increased power recharge time. To mitigate the added cooldown time of the Biotic Annihilator‘s powers, I always use the Structural Ergonomics V Gear mod. The Warp power does not need to be ranked too high, as it is only needed to detonate the biotic primer from Annihilation Field. I have Warp ranked to level 4 to get the 50% bonus to force and damage of biotic explosions. Annihilation Field is ranked to: have a larger radius, give the Biotic Annihilator added movement speed, have increased duration (90 seconds), drain the shields of enemies to replenish your own. Annihilation
Field’s increased movement speed will let you get enemies in and out of the Field’s enhanced radius quicker, for more biotic explosions, and plus, everyone likes to run faster. Having Tech Armor and Annihilation Field ranked this way adds to the durability of the Biotic Annihilator, making you much harder to kill due to damage reduction(Tech Armor) and quick shield regeneration(Annihilation Field). The increased radius also can set up more enemies for biotic explosions that are best detonated with a teammate with Shockwave. In general, the larger Field also makes priming BE easier. The equipment mods listed for Platinum difficulty are mainly to increase the effectiveness of the Piranha shotgun. The Shotgun Rail Amp III, and Warp Ammo IV make the Piranha much more powerful. Also, the added damage bonus from Warp Ammo will be in effect when firing on nearby enemies affected by the Annihilation Field. The Piranha is also used to fill the lengthened recharge speed of Warp after a Biotic Explosion. Step by step example: Lone Geth Pyro. With Tech Armor and Annihilation Field active, sprint over to the Pyro. Get close enough for Annihilation Field to take effect, and hit the Pyro with Warp. After the Biotic Explosion, move away so the Pyro is out of the Annihilation Field’s radius, and then move back in while bullying and stunning the Pyro with the Piranha until Warp recharges/magazine is empty. Finish off the Pyro with another Biotic Explosion or more Piranha shots. Only use melee to stun a single enemy when the Piranha needs to be reloaded. For a group of enemies, do the same thing as you would with a single enemy. The only difference would be to retreat when necessary to allow your shields to recharge. The Biotic Explosion will stun nearby enemies, making them all vulnerable to the Piranha, and depending on the amount of enemies in the group, you might not even need to move back and forth for the Annihilation Field to take effect, as you only lose the priming effect on the enemy detonated. This build is effective on all enemy types and all enemy characters, but is most effective against the Geth, as there is no risk of being sync-killed (except if you play on Platinum). Caution should be taken when playing Collector, because as a close range specialist, Praetorians and Possessed Abominations are dangerous and numerous. You could solo Gold with this build, but Platinum would be very difficult. The Biotic Annihilator is best used as the spearhead of a two man group, with your teammate covering you from nearby. This build is a driving force on Gold. The best support for the Biotic Annihilator would be a team of a Batarian Slasher, a Drell Vanguard or Adept, and character with throw or another Biotic Annihilator. If you can, avoid teammates with Tech Burst primer powers, as these can be a major troll on your flow, since tech powers take priority of detonation over biotic primers, causing you to waste Warp on a relatively weak Tech Burst instead of a powerful Biotic Explosion, potentially getting you killed. Seriously, Tech powers ccan get you killed! With the Biotic Annihilator, it is important to remember to be aggressive, but to be smart. DO NOT take on too many enemies or risk getting cornered or downed. Only experience can help you gauge the situation and the tactics needed with this character.
3.5 – It takes experience to effectively use the Biotic Annihilator effectively.
Primary: A lightweight and “accurate” shotgun with Blade Attachment and High-Velocity Barrel. The best is the Wraith but the Eviscerator and Disciple also work.
Secondary: Acolyte with Ultralight Materials and High Caliber Barrel
Use Shock Trooper gear if it gives you 2 grenade slots, otherwise use Grenade Capacity.
The Alliance Infiltration Unit is the consummate close quarters specialist. Tac Cloak is useful as it always is but provides extra shotgun damage instead of sniper damage. Snap Freeze sets up cryo explosions, staggers across a wide area, provides 10% vulnerability and weakens armor 25%. That last one is a big one especially coupled with High-Velocity Barrel. The damage of every shot against an armored target is reduced by 50 so for shotguns which spread their damage over 8 pellets, that’s 400 damage resisted per shot by armored targets. But with 25% weakening and 65% piercing, only 40 damage is shrugged off by armored targets. Repair Matrix almost feels like cheating. The increased movement speed paired with the acrobatic dodges (which reduce damage taken by 50%) means you simply don’t get hit. So when you get hit, Repair Matrix reduced damage taken by 40% and if you’re hit in the middle of a dodge then that’s 90% damage ignored. That measly 10% is quickly repaired by the 235 shield points regenerating per second. And should you go down for some reason, you get back up with full health and enough invulnerability time to activate another repair matrix, cloak, and side flip to safety. Activating Repair Matrix has no animation which means doing so is instantaneous so long as you aren’t staggered and being a grenade power, using it will not cause you to decloak.
The T-1000’s offense is an extremely fast rotation mixing cloak, Snap Freeze, heavy melee and shotgun blasts. The Wraith’s only shortfall is the time delay between shots. The Infiltration Unit’s heavy melee is both powerful and crazy fast. This speed allows heavy melee to be used to cancel the last second of Snap Freeze that does nothing but slow down the attack and to fill the space in between shots from the Wraith to maintain a continuous assault. Also, once an enemy is killed by heavy melee the T-1000 gains 25% weapon damage for 20 seconds which is equivalent to maxing out Unshackled AI for weapon damage. An assault run looks something like this; Cloak, close distance to enemy, Snap Freeze, cancel to Heavy Melee, Shotgun blast, Heavy Melee, Shotgun, cloak, side-flip, reload, repeat.
Most enemies die with or before the first shotgun blast and only Brutes or higher survive the second shotgun blast. This assault rotation is so fast that only the last shotgun attack doesn’t receive Tac Cloak’s damage bonus.
A few last words on Repair Matrix. With a duration of 12 seconds and Shock Trooper IV or V, the T-1000 has the potential for a full minute and a half of invulnerability. And with that said, Repair Matrix does not need to be active all the time. When facing down one or two enemies, leave it off unless your shields go down. And when attacking groups just form a plan, pick a target and then activate Repair Matrix. This kind of use minimizes trips to the ammo boxes which I make a policy to do whenever I only have 1 Matrix left. Repair Matrix will also stop the damage over time effects from banshees and scions. So in summary only use Repair Matrix before fighting groups, when shields are dropped or being drained and always have one on hand.
2 – Super effective, super fun and Repair Matrix keeps even inexperienced players in the game. Sync kills will still make you super dead, Repair Matrix won’t reactivate you.
Any pistol, the harder hitting the better but you want to keep your recharge at 200%. Mods for the pistol should be the Power magnifier and (insert your preferred upgrade here, I use the High Caliber Barrel, just because).
For the gear itself, Adaptive War Amp or anything that offers Biotic Power Damage or Power Damage. While not mandatory Warp Ammo will boost your damage significantly. You’re only using pistols so a Pistol Rail Amp for the weapon bonus, and either Cyclonic Modulators or Power Amplifier Modules for armor bonus.
Think of yourself as fast aggressive fire support, your big damage comes from your buffed detonations know your spawn points and pick a hiding spot with a clear view. you want to open each new mob with a shot from your pistol (with warp ammo) to soften them up, then warp-pistol or manoeuvre for CD, then pistol-throw to detonate. For smaller fare, pistol/throw kills anything without shields. You won’t be using Stasis a lot, it is more of an escape tool than attack or a tool for crowd control. also handy to stop that Phantom from wriggling about so you can shoot it in the face
the basic idea is you’re reasonably sturdy, so you don’t get one-shot killed by big ranged baddies, or if your jumped from behind (barring the usual sync-kill) you also stand a fair chance of actually getting out of the dog pile that inevitably converges on you when downed and on the bigger game found in Gold you can put out a good bit of damage.
Just remember; you can be quite aggressive with this build but cover is still your friend, try to keep a reasonable distance, keep moving and groove to your new Dubstep track generator.
Light unit (health only): chiko SHWWUORRRE shwerer or chiko SHUDOM shwerer or SHUDOM
Medium shielded target: chiko SHWWUORRRE shwerer shwerer chiko SHUDOMBBOOEE
Phantom or other slippery target: SHOwreeee chiko chiko chiko chiko SHUDOMBBOOEE chiko SHWWUORRRE chiko chiko SHUDOMBBOOEE
Heavily armoured unit / Heavily shielded unit: chiko SHWWUORRRE shwerer chiko chiko chiko SHUDOMBBOOEE shwerer (insert short running bursts then repeat as required)
Chaining together kills should get you some pretty phat beats
N00b Rating: 3.5 – Just for the fact you need to know when to back off and keep on the move while still being able to shoot-cast dodge/turn sprint spin-shoot-cast retain cover etc, can get a bit disorientating, especially if you start snapping to walls etc.
Biotic Hammer: (4) Damage & Force, (5) Armor Damage, (6) Number of Charges
Electrical Hammer: (4) Shields & Barriers, (5) Chill, (6) Number of Charges*
Krogan Warlord: N/A
Warlord Rage: Durability** (4), Martial Artist (5), Fitness Expert** (6)
*Depending on your style you could switch this for the Radius and combo evolution. However, I prefer having the 4 charges this evolution provides so I can go to town on shielded enemies as needed.
**I prefer turning the warlord into a damage sponge. However, either the Durability or Fitness Expert can be exchanged for their alternate melee damage evolution, but not both. Remember, the Krogan Warlord can’t take cover or dodge, and he moves slowly if not sprinting.
The important thing here is to keep your cooldown bonus above 90% and chose the weapon class with your highest melee bonus mod. For Shotguns, I recommend the Geth Plasma Shotgun, Graal Spike Thrower or the N7 Crusader in that order. All of the Krogan Warlord’s abilities are based within melee range so it is a good idea to cover your bases and carry something for the medium to long range. If your Assault Rifle Omni-blade is higher than your shotgun blade attachment, the only ones that are too heavy are the Geth Spitfire and the N7 Typhoon, so choose your favorite.
The Juggernaut Shield is my personal favorite. Since this is a melee build Hydraulic Joints would work well too, but I like the slight addition to durability from Juggernaut Shields. You really don’t need much else, but the Strength Enhancer weapon equipment and disruptor or phasic rounds would work well.
Say hello to the Krogan Warlord. He is big, loud and the giant ball of destruction every Krogan should be. As previously stated, he is a damage sponge. With no gear his health and shields are at 1700 and 2125, second only to the Geth Juggernaut. However, with both Tech armor and Rage mode active, he gains an 80% damage reduction with a 200 health regeneration bonus. Built to take a beating and dish it out, the electrical hammer and biotic hammer abilities augment the Krogan’s melee capabilities and aren’t instant activation. The charges generated by these abilities are only used up when you execute a heavy melee or finish a three-hit melee combo. I prefer to have the Electrical Hammer charges active at most times since the heavy melee has more of an AoE than biotic hammer, it chills target that aren’t killed by the damage, and it has more charges than Biotic Hammer. However, Biotic Hammer is your power house move. The damage it deals is massive and shreds through armor with ease with this build. I can one-shot a phantom that has full health and barriers with a Heavy Melee. Rage mode activates fairly easily for the Krogan Warlord already, which is why I skipped the Pure Rage evolution of Warlord Rage for Fitness Expert.
Now that you know some of the positive attributes, let’s cover the weaknesses. The Krogan Warlord is even less maneuverable than other Krogan. He cannot use low cover, either as protection or vaulting it when it gets in his way. He has limited use of high cover. You cannot put your back to a corner and fire at enemies while having most of your body protected. You can still use high cover, but you need to position yourself manually. His walking speed is very slow, but he can still sprint, which is pretty much how you should move across the map at all times. Tech armor and rage may provide a massive damage resistance along with health regeneration to bolster his already high durability, but enemies with high DPS like Cerberus turrets and Geth Pyros can overcome this, especially if you have to deal with more than one. Finally, the biggest danger with this build is the fact that you should be spending most of your time in melee range. This is not a bad thing until you have to face the sync-killers (Brute, Banshee, Atlas, Phantom, Praetorian, and Scion). I didn’t even realize a Brute could sync-kill you until I played the Krogan Warlord. You only need to really worry about Phantoms if they sneak up on you or attack in packs since one Biotic Hammer Heavy melee can take them out with ease. The standard tactic I take is to flank a sync-kill enemy while they are preoccupied with another teammate (preferably a Geth Juggernaut) and just start using heavy melees. If the sync-killer agro’s you, start back pedaling and unloading your weapon of choice until their health is low enough and you can take them out in one heavy melee.
One of the first things you should do in a wave if you aren’t already in Rage mode is to find a trooper level enemy and Heavy melee it to death to get the martial artist boost to melee damage. Unless you want to waste a biotic hammer charge on this mook, your best bet is to weaken it with your gun first, then start in with a heavy melee when you are a couple of meters away. The Krogan Warlord’s heavy melee does have a limited lock-on feature that helps you close distance and make sure you hit the highlighted enemy, even if it moves. After smashing the first mook to death, find another one nearby to trigger Rage. From here on out, you should be able to kill most troopers with a single standard melee attack. Use Electrical Hammer charged heavy melees on shielded mooks to both keep your martial artist bonus going and chill the enemies in the surrounding area. Keeping Rage mode and the martial artist boost going should not be difficult once you get the ball rolling. Remember, only the third strike of a standard melee combo or a heavy melee will expend a charge. So, if you can, try to minimize the number of charges you use. You can cancel out of the charging animation into a heavy melee, but being caught in the middle of a group of enemies and suddenly having to recharge is annoying. You can use the blast from tech armor if you so choose, but your electrical hammer heavy melee attacks will do more damage over a wider radius without leaving you exposed.
2 – There are a few quirks of the Krogan Warlord build to get used to, and learning that sometimes it is better to back pedal and use your gun when facing sync-killers. But overall this build is fairly simple.
Personally, I prefer the appearance he comes standard with. No specialized paint-jobs, just a big, red, angry Krogan running around crushing things. What could be cooler than that?
*You may switch rank 5 and 6 on Fitness for Expose and Pierce on Warp. Totally your preference between bulkiness or stronger explosions.
Here’s one of the reasons why this build is called Thunder and Lightning, the weapon we’re going to use is the Reegar Carbine. That weapon is one of the deadliest there is at close range and will take down shields and barriers in no time. Try to level its rank since it is not the lightest shotgun available. Give it a spare thermal clip and a shredder mods (armors are the Reegar’s weakness and it helps to deal with Cerberus Guardians) and you’re ready for any kind of target.
The Tech armor provides a nice damage mitigation but since you are a front line fighter and will have to stay close to the ennemy in order to keep them within your field’s radius a Stronghold Pacakge, a Shield Booster or a Survivor loadout are reasonable Gear Bonus choices to improve your survivability. Don’t bother taking power damage boosters: Biotic detonations ignore them and you’ll only be using Warp for detonations. Armor Piercing is the best way to counter the Reegar’s Carbine weakness against armored enemies, Drill and Warp ammos are a reasonnable second choice and a Shotgun Rail Amp of course for the weapon bonus. For the Armor bonus in Silver runs you can pick up an Adrenaline Module for increased mobility or a Power Efficiency module if you want a shorter cooldown on Warp, and for Gold runs a Cyclonic Modulator will drastically improve the amount of punishment you can withsand.
This build is called Thunder and Lightning because Biotic detonations will be your thunder and the Reegar Carbine your lightning strikes. It differs from the N7 Fury and the others usual Valkyrie builds in a sense that you will be less counting on a super fast Warp recharge time for Biotic Combos spamming, you carry a heavy weapon and you’ll be using it as much as Warp in order to deal damage. You are a close range combat specialist, you have a rather high defense, you can take a decent amount of punishment before going down thanks to the Tech Armor, the Annihilation Field’s drain ability and your maxed Fitness (and the Cyclonic Modulator if you’re using one) but you are not nearly as resilient as a Krogan Vanguard so you must plan your strikes before charging head first. The reckless behaviour works well in Bronze but the game will become much more punishing in higher difficulties. The typical attack patern will be: spot a small group, close the gap using cover as much as possible, get in fast and open hostilities with a biotic explsion (warp on an enemy within your field’s reach) that will deal heavy damage to your target and stagger everyone else around, then finish the survivors with a Reegar Carbine blast. The Reegar shines in close combat situations killing infantry at an amazing rate, shields and barriers will go down instantly and the shredder mod combined with biotic detonations (+ the ammo bonus if you took one) will make short work of mid armored ennemies like Cerberus Dragoons or Reaper Ravagers. You can also intentionnally decide to kill shieled/barrier ennemies only at the end of your attack in order to restore your own barrier (in that case make sure your haven’t taken their shield down with your opening biotic explosion).
Like any other close range fighter you have to trade carefully with sync-kill monsters, Banshee, Atlas and Praetorians especially. Wear their shield/barrier down with your Reegar and stay away from them as far as your Annihilation Field’s radius allows it when you want to set up a biotic detonation. Always try engage them from the side or better, from behind. Don’t try anything stupid while a Banshee is teleporting, wait for her to stop before wearing down her barrier with your Reegar or damage her armor with a biotic explosion. Scions can also be very tricky to take down, a frontal approach can be deadly for you as they will try to gun you down with their nasty 3 shots snipe attack, so be smart use cover and circle around them. Phantoms are not so much of a big deal, the Reegar Carbine will take down their barrier almost instantly and hurt them bad even through their shield, just don’t let them get too close and be ready to evade in case your Warp misses.
Geths can be a tricky encounter, there are good news and a bad one. For the good news: a lot of shields to drain and no grab/insta-kill moves. The bad news is: they all have a melee stun move which can put you in a very delicate position and leave you open for a lethal counter attack. Plan your strikes carefully when you decide to engage Geth infantry, you don’t want to be left stunned in the middle of a group of troopers. Also be careful with Pyros, while the Reegar Carbine will make short work of their shields, their armor will last longer leaving you vulnerable to their flame thrower with no means to bring back your barrier. The strategy against Primes is quite similar to the one with Scions, use cover when you approach them their snipe attack is very painful, don’t stand in front, circle around them keep them at the maximum reach of your annihilation field and alternate warp explosions and Reegar blasts. Against collectors remember to avoid Possessed Abominations like the plague, your annihilation field will turn against you by helping triggering their deadly self destruction!
Thunder and Lightning Valkyries work great with a melee Krogan specialist teammate, charge the ennemy right behind him, he’ll take the alpha strike while you decimate the enemy with your detonations and Reegar blasts, sparing him a potential nasty counter attack. This is particularly true with Geth. A Volus engineer/sentiel is also a precious companion, his shield boost ability, if properly evolved, can raise your damage mitigation up to 90% turning your Valkyrie into a tank able to pierce through thick ennemy ranks and deal tremendous amounts of damage with only minimal punishement in return (just keep in mind that you are still vulnerable to insta-kill moves and that your survival depends on your Volus friend’s health). With the help of an Asari Adept Justicar you can also turn a specific spot into a real stronghold, your field and her bubble synergize very well. You will also give your team plenty of opportunities for biotic explosions and weaken for them any ennemy within your field’s range.
3 – This build is very easy to use in Bronze, dealing tremendous amount of
damage with little punishment in return (especially in close combat favoring maps like Firebase Glacier or Firebase White), and can be hard to play in Gold on an unfriendly map (i.e. with few cover options like Firebase Hydra) if your team can’t make up for your lack of long range abilities, if you behave like a Krogan Battlemaster. You are a terror at close range but totally ineffective at long because of the Reegar Carbine’s short reach so you will constantly have to find a safe way to close the gap with your targets. You have to learn when you can charge and when it is better to wait/turn around for a better openning, have eyes everywhere, being shot in the back or caught in a cross fire is lethal in Gold. You can play agressive but not reckless, this is a high risk/high reward build, learn where the limit stands and don’t forget that your annihilation field is as much a weapon as a great support tool for your team.