One of the most hyped features of Bioware’s upcoming Mass Effect 2 (and the expected sequel after it,) is the ability to transfer character and story data from the original Mass Effect over into the new gameplay and plotline. Chris Priestly of Bioware has recently issued a statement concerning the mechanic, including a few hints on the possible implications the save data could have on the sequel.
From the press statement:
Up until now we have only discussed the plot impacts of this feature, however, there are also certain gameplay perks as well. If you finished ME1 as a high level character you will receive greater bonuses than those who finished at lower levels. Ex, if you finished ME1 as a level 35 character, you will receive a bonus, but if you finished ME1 as a level 50 character, your bonus will be larger. That being said these bonuses will not put new playthrough characters at a severe disadvantage. For example, some of these bonuses include a monetary boost at the start of the game, or additional research resources for use at the Normandy’s Tech Lab. Another perk is if you finished the game as a Paragon or Renegade, part of your alignment will carry over making it easier to access certain dialogue options.