The Pathfinder

WARNING – This post contains spoilers for Mass Effect: Andromeda. Check out the Mass Effect website for more information on the game.

Pathfinder:

Esme Ryder

Mission Summary:

Habitat 7 (cont.)

Report:

Cora now joined Esme’s team and we ran down the hill, dodging lightning, until we found Ryder Sr. on a ledge above the biggest, and weirdest, alien structure yet. We pooled information, confirming for each other that the aliens doing all the shooting were visitors to the planet. There was a little moment where Ryder Sr. expressed pride in Esme’s scouting work, but she brushed it off.

Ryder Sr. had deduced that the alien tower was interacting with the same dark matter cloud that the Hyperion was caught in, and messing up the weather planet-wide. Shutting it down would solve both problems, but there was the small issue of the alien army between us and our objective.

Unaware that we’re about to liven up their guard duty.

The next section felt more like a typical ME encounter – working our way past waves of enemies, then holding a position while someone does something technical. What was interesting, was Ryder Sr.’s running dialogue with SAM (also back with us), which included a number of orders to upload combat profiles. Hmm.

Despite all the tech, the door still took muscle power to shift. Once opened, Ryder Sr. and Esme headed into the room, which looked more like some grand hall than a control room.

Tinkering with alien devices is a family trait.

Once SAM finished translating the alien code, Ryder Sr. shut the tower down. They walked back out to brilliant sunshine, and a glimpse of what the planet could have been. Esme experienced a surge of hope about what could be achieved in Andromeda that was quickly annihilated by some kind of defensive wave from the control tower, which swept them both off the top of the structure.

This time the face-plate of Esme’s helmet was completely trashed. Cora advised the shuttle could be there in 3-4 minutes, but Esme didn’t have that long.

Uh-oh!

Ryder Sr. gave Esme his helmet, and, as she lost consciousness, directed SAM to initiate a transfer. I have a bad feeling about this.

The blackout was intercut with scenes of the crew rushing Esme to the ship, then the med-bay, and scenes of what the combination of oxygen deprivation and an A.I. implant were doing to her body.

This is your brain on SAM

As a last resort, Lexi had her moved to the SAM Node, where Esme woke up with her very own private line to SAM [because that’s not going to go horribly wrong]. On top of that, Ryder Sr. had bypassed the chain of command to pass Pathfinder authority to Esme, not Cora. Cora seemed unfazed by this development [WHAT DOES SHE KNOW!], Liam was encouraging, and Lexi pointed out that it was all academic anyway because the SAM link was hardwired to Esme; removing it would most likely kill her.

Although Cora said they had a few hours before the Hyperion docked with the Nexus [I think finding a way to press on to the rendezvous may have been Captain Dunn’s preference in that earlier conversation], in practice we moved straight to a scene on the bridge. The Nexus was dead ahead, but all was not well: construction isn’t finished, and the pilot could only raise an automated channel. On docking, the Captain clearly felt her work was done. Over to Esme. The Pathfinder.

Crew Dossiers (CONFIDENTIAL):

Ryder Sr.:

I remembered to look at his bio. He was stationed on the Citadel, so probably not involved in the Lunar project. Shame. The whole ‘sharing his brain with an A.I.’ thing seems very dodgy though.

Lexi T’Perro:

Her role as a medic seems specifically tied to the SAM implants, and I’m left wondering how much she knows about it all. I hope I get to investigate.

Scott Ryder:

Still in a coma. His bio says that his military career was cut short by Ryder Sr.’s dismissal, and I’m curious now whether that is the default background for Scott Ryder, or for the ‘inactive’ twin.

Priority Mission:

Discover what happened on the Nexus.

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