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Citadel DLC: Best way to playthrough – Mass Effect 3

Mass Effect 3 Citadel DLC

Just got the Citadel DLC, after finally resolving Origin/EA scamming me, which took 3 weeks (Yep EA is bs!) and I am wondering what is the best way for me to play through the Citadel DLC without missing too much content? I Have male and female Shepards at the point. Spoilers are fine, I will be likely reading helpful comments as I play through it.


For full Citadel experience:

  • If you want Tali involved, don’t do any part of it until you finish the Rannoch arc (or at least recruit her after the Geth Dreadnaught).
  • Have Javik from From Ashes, have Zaeed and Kasumi. Complete the 2nd half of the game missions with Jacob, Samara, Miranda’s missions.
  • The first part of the DLC is the 4 mission questline, and it only involves your 6-7 squadmates and optionally Wrex if he’s alive, So for this, don’t worry about having done the Zaeed/Kasumi/Jacob/Samara/Miranda stuff, but be aware about Tali.*
  • Again, visits unlock as you do missions. Most unlock automatically (since the DLC itself unlocks after Citadel Coup), but the Jacob/Samara/Miranda might be missed if you’re not careful. This does mean that you aren’t done visits until after Sanctuary, if you have an alive Miranda.
    Trigger visits with the apartment email terminal. Invite people over to the apartment, or meet them on the Strip.
  • The Armax Arsenal Arena seems normal enough, but it includes most ME2 squadmates (if alive) to play again with, Collector enemies, cool stuff like that. It also has a special questline where you use the special email terminal to get requests from fans. These requests get more difficult to fulfill until you reach the strange conclusion. Eventually, the Arena rewards a Kai Leng-ish set of powerful armor, a choice of one out of three types.
  • Arena matches COUNT AS A MISSION. That means that more apartment/strip visits may unlock over time. Check the apartment email terminal after every 1-3 arena matches.

For the record, this is how I prefer to do my ME3 full playthrough, though variation can certainly be allowed for a still full experience (not counting N7 missions; just pretend they’re done ASAP) Keep in mind that I prefer to do story arcs/DLC arcs together whenever it makes sense:

  • Vancouver
  • Mars


  • Manae
  • From Ashes DLC (1 mission)
  • Grissom Academy
  • Sur’Kesh
  • Rachni
  • Turian Platoon
  • Cerberus Bomb
  • Finish all possible remaining sidequests, cutscenes, as this is point of no return
  • Tuchanka


  • Citadel Coup
  • Omega DLC (4 missions)


  • Asari Monastery
  • Ex-Cerberus Scientists
  • Geth Dreadnaught
  • Rescue Admiral
  • Geth Consensus
  • Rannoch


  • Citadel DLC (4 missions, not the rest of content)
  • Thessia (possibly visit Silversun Strip after, do arena and visits)
  • Sanctuary
  • Leviathan DLC (3 missions, though first two could be done together before Thessia)
  • Finish all possible remaining sidequests, Citadel DLC visits, arena content, etc, as this is around point of no return
  • Citadel DLC PARTY 😀 (try to make it last action done before Cronos)


  • Cronos Station
  • London/Citadel/Crucible

From Ashes may be done at any point, but typically the earlier done, the more content you get out of it, so a main playthrough should recruit him asap, even if that means you can’t get Kaidan/Ashley/Tali commentary during it.

Omega can be done at any point without negative consequence, but I like to do it right after the Citadel Coup in order to feel like I’m getting revenge on Cerberus.

Leviathan works in good and bad ways when split up or done together. Split up, it feels like a gradual mystery being unveiled (though mission #1-2 feel rather linked), while done together it feels like a proper contained story arc. I do suggest leaving mission #3 for after Thessia, in order to sync better with plot reveals (Thessia hints at the master of the Cycle, while Leviathan gets more into detail about it). While Sanctuary does give a sense of urgency about going after Cerberus, it isn’t depicted as essential to do ASAP, giving you some leeway to do Leviathan and do/finish Citadel.

Citadel DLC can be done all together, or (carefully) spread out over the 2nd half of the game. Do the mission arc once you have all squadmates that you intended to have, then space out visits/arena/etc as you wish, or do them all at once. Finally, you should leave the Party for right before the point of no return.

When doing the Citadel Party, be very careful not to miss conversations. Each group of characters will have multiple things to say, so visit them a few times before carrying on with the Party through talking to Glyph. Take your time.

There are variations to the Party based on previous actions done in the trilogy, the characters you invite/are able to invite to the Party, and how you customize the tone of the Party (quiet/loud, snacks/drinks, stuff like that).

You wake up with your love interest, but there’s a chance with FemShep (if in no romance) to wake up with Javik or Vega, to humorous/awkward results.

There is also a partial Samara romance in this DLC. On the visit with her, if you’re a male or female Shepard in no romance but an attempted one in ME2 conversations, you can pursue it further to greater success.


Mass Effect 3 Citadel DLC

The visits:

Kaidan – Apartment
Ashley – Silversun (obviously these depend on Virmire Survivor)
Liara – Apartment
Garrus – Silversun
Tali – Apartment
EDI – Apartment
James – Apartment
Javik – Silversun

Cortez – Apartment (+James), Silversun
Samantha – Apartment, Silversun
Joker – Silversun
Wrex – Silversun

Miranda – Apartment, Silversun
Jacob – Silversun
Mordin – Just a reference in Party
Grunt – Silversun
Jack – Apartment, Silversun
Samara – Apartment (+ ‘romance’; nothing for Morinth)
Thane – Apartment (+ recordings)
Legion – Nothing
Zaeed – Silversun
Kasumi – Silversun

There is nothing for characters like Ken&Gabby, Chakwas, Legion, Adams.
Romance content for Kaidan, Ashley, Liara, Garrus, Tali, Cortez, Samantha, Miranda, Jacob (sorta), Jack, Thane (sorta), are expanded.

Some of these visits (I think Joker, Wrex, Kasumi) happen more automatically in the Silver Coast Casino, so do some exploration instead of totally relying on emails.

Make sure to not miss the Anderson recordings around the apartment.

Reminder that you should try to complete all of the other available Citadel DLC and non-Citadel DLC content before doing the Party and immediately moving on to the ending.

Original Link – Continuation of discussion

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