Mass Effect Legendary Edition: X57 Balak Choice Guide

A guide on which option to choose during the Balak standoff in Mass Effect Legendary Edition and how it affects later games in the trilogy.

One of many big dilemmas that players encounter in Mass Effect Legendary Edition is connected with the "Bring Down the Sky" quest, involving the Asteroid X57 and a villain named Balak. You should make sure that your choices are correct, since this quest will influence the storylines in both Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3.

Our guide will help you make the right decisions during the X57 Balak quest in Mass Effect Legendary Edition. The quest itself is quite straightforward and all you need is to follow our step-by-step instructions below to finish it the way you'd ideally like for this playthrough.

Mass Effect: How to Complete Bring Down the Sky Quest

In order to start the Balak quest you need to follow these steps:

  1. Travel to the Exodus Cluster
  2. Select the Asgard system
  3. Select Asteroid X57

There you will be contacted by the human engineer Kate Bowman, who will ask you to shut off three fusion torches that can make the asteroid collide with the Terra Nova planet, which is an evil plan of the Batarian leader Balak.

Disable the First Fusion Torch

  1. Follow the marker on the map and enter the building of the base
  2. Deal with Batarian mercenaries and go upstairs
  3. Disable the first fusion torch

Disable the Second Fusion Torch

  1. Talk to Simon to reveal the location of the second torch
  2. Head to the second base marked on the map
  3. Disarm the blasting caps at the entrance door
  4. Deal with Batarians inside the base
  5. Head upstairs and disable the second fusion torch

Disable the Third Fusion Torch

  1. Watch Kate Bowman being taken hostage
  2. Head to the third base
  3. Destroy turrets outside of the base
  4. Go upstairs and disable the third fusion torch

Mass Effect: Balak Standoff Choices

Once all three fusion torches are disabled, you will face the army of Charn, the second-in-command of Batarians after Balak. You have to defeat him in the fight in order to get the location of the main base, where Balak resides with a group of hostages, including Kate Bowman.

After reaching his base, you will have to confront more of his troops before entering the base and speaking with Balak himself. This is where you will have to make the choice that will define the rest of the storyline.

Kill Balak and Let Hostages Die

If you decide to kill Balak, then you will have to fight with the following enemies:

  • Ka'hairal Balak
  • 2x Batarian Bodyguard
  • 2x Batarian War Beast
  • 2x Defense Drone

This is going to be a difficult fight, and if you succeed, then the hostages will die as well.

You will receive one of the following rewards for the completion of this mission:

  • Quarian Armor
  • Light/Medium/Heavy Human Armor
  • Simon Atwell's Omni-Tool

This option will have the following consequences in Mass Effect 2:

  • You will be able to see the news broadcast of celebration on planet Terra Nova
  • You will see another broadcast of Reverend Bowman holding a prayer for all the deceased hostages

The Mass Effect 3 storyline will include the new Batarian leader taking over Balak's armies, which basically means that your choice of killing Balak changed nothing.

Release Balak and the Hostages

Releasing Balak also saves the lives of the hostages, but you will still need to deal with:

  • 2x Defense Drone
  • 3x Explosive Charge

The first charge can be found in the lower level of the base, the second one on the medical bay, and the third one on the second level.

Once all three explosive charges are disarmed, the hostages will be released and free to go. At the end of the mission you will recieve one of the three rewards mentioned above.

If you've made the decision to release Balak and the hostages, then you will experience the following events in Mass  Effect 2:

  • You will see the news broadcast of celebration on planet Terra Nova
  • You will learn that Kate Bowman will give speech during this celebration
  • You will receive an e-mail of gratitude from Kate Bowman
  • You will see the news broadcast mentioning that Balak has escaped

Finally, you will meet Balak in Mass Effect 3 during the Citadel: Batarian Codes mission, where you can finally defeat him for good.

This decision is much more appropriate and satisfactory, as you save the hostages, and later on you will be able to catch Balak without risking anybody's lives.

Hopefully, this guide helped you make the right decision during the X57 Balak quest in Mass Effect Legendary Edition, and don't forget to read our official review of Mass Effect Legendary Edition right here.


Sergey has been a freelancer in the video games industry for more than five years, writing for various publications around the world. His favorite games are MtG, Dark Souls, Diablo, and Divinity: Original Sin.

Published May. 26th 2021

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