The Anatomy of My Bioware Romances. Part Two: Mass Effect – jsixgun

Once again we find ourselves at the brink of digital titillation as we take a look through the romances of Mass Effect and Mass Effect 2. When I first saw the trailers for the Mass Effect, I literally had my mind blown.  Could a game this awesome really be coming out?  Well it was, and it totally reestablished my love affair for Bioware (After Baldur’s Gate I & II, Jade Empire and the AMAZING Knights of the Old Republic, I was ripe and ready for a new IP).  I relived my childhood pleasures (experienced in the original Baldur’s Gate) all over again when creating my Commander Shephard, and at the cusp of completion found my self thinking I was as “Bad A” as Peter Griffin with a Mustache.

Mustache culture is pretty cool

One thing any “Bad A” hero must have is an as fittingly “Hot A” companion. This isn’t misogynistic, this is an equation for success and Mass Effect glows with success like the Olson twins glow with an eating disorder (for those interested in photometric units that equals about 1 lux, or the radiance of a full moon overheard at tropical latitudes). However, Mass Effect 1 only gives you two choices to act out your sci-fi finagling:

Meet Ashley Williams and Liara T’Soni

If your first thoughts are, “eww, ones blue,” than I can accurately label you as a xenophobe and will promptly be reporting you to the police, because yes, I do know the number to 911.  Now that I have done my part to vanquish bigotry we shall continue.  The cool thing about Mass Effect is that it makes you make choices, hard choices and choices you can’t take back.  This same concept is present in your love interests.  Furthermore, if you start the game trying to be Mr. Casanova and court them both, they will eventually confront you and make you choose between them (score one for monogamy). So who did I chose in my original play through? Ashley Williams.

I’m a sucker for a woman in overbearing armor.

When you first meet Ashley, she’s fighting for her life on Eden Prime.  With her entire squad almost taken out by the Geth, you lend her your skills and you both make your way to the Prothean Beacon that Shephard was sent to find.  I won’t go into what all that means, but lets just say you and her are together when humanity finds out that something is quite amiss in the universe.  Eventually she winds up on your crew and the rest is intergalactic history. One thing I found extremely alluring about Ashley is her strong ingrained religious beliefs.  Though reluctant at first to share them with Shephard, at one point she comments, “How can you look out at this galaxy and not believe in something?”  Maybe it’s because I’m from the South, or maybe it’s because too few video game characters delve into those topics, but I was immensely hooked by the deepness of her convictions throughout the entire game.  Honestly, it was a breath of fresh air because I felt like I wasn’t dealing with a stereotypically hot video game broad; she had an original background that served her well.

As you build rapport with Williams, you help her overcome the tainted military past of her father and grandfather, which she is always trying to overcome (one of the reasons she’s very guarded at first). All your hard work finally culminates, after flirting and a healthy dose of poetry by Walt Whitman, into a kiss and the not so implied sex scene:

I just love it when a plan comes together.

Isn’t love grand? I think it is and if you disagree with me you are worse than Hitler.  In regards to Liara, well she just never turned my crank.  She was a cool character for sure, but Ashley just seemed so much deeper and relatable.  Interesting enough though, Liara could be a love interest even if you played as a female Shephard. While I won’t start a discussion if art should so accurately imitate reality, and how putting the option for a lesbian scene is kind of just fodder for 13 year olds to giggle about, I will say that it just wasn’t for me. Anyways, till next time when I look at Dragon Age: Origins, and more chicks wearing armor…or not.



3 Comments to “The Anatomy of My Bioware Romances. Part Two: Mass Effect – jsixgun”

  1. I chose Liara my second playthrough, but in Mass effect 2 dumped her for Miranda.

  2. Jake collette is a nerd

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