So what does determine outcome?
[color="Sienna"]Hmmm. I think my skillz must be off: I lost three crew in the final fight.
I put Legion through the ducts, and had Samarra take the other team. I took Jack and Wrex with me. Everyone made it to the meet-up, but Legion got shot as we tried to close the door.
I sent Saeed back with the crew we found, and he got them back but died doing so.
And then I had Jacob form the biotic barrier for Jack, me, and Wrex (to ward off the pesky bugs). We got to the end-point, but Jack was carried off by the flying nasties. She was the only one I regret losing – that ain’t no way for Jack to go.
The final battle was me, Tali, and Garrus up against the crazy Terminator-esque Reaper ship. We all made it OK.
I admit that I started the end-game early – I was only level 20 or 22, and hadn’t really explored much of the galaxy. (I kept going to various planets, but none revealed interesting missions, so I gave up after a while. I think I should have looked harder.) I don’t know what other variables contribute: I imported a level 50 ME1 character; I was female Soldier/Engineer (what is it called – Sentinel or Infiltrator or something?); I had romanced Liara in ME1, and stayed true to her in ME2; I recruited all the team, and everyone except Saeed was loyal; I was very Paragon-y, but had maybe 25 to 30% of the Renegade-meter filled; I think I had most ship upgrades, except maybe whatever Saeed could offer.