Over the past week, one of my coworkers (who will not be named for his safety against Tali lovers) and I got into a conversation about Mass Effect series characters. He mentioned Ashley being his absolute favorite romance, while I preferred Tali. Now everyone has their favorite squadmate/romance, may it be Miranda, Jack, and even my main man Garrus, but for the purposes of this, we’re going to focus on Tali and Ashley. Leave a comment below if you’d like to have your input as well!
First, I’ll start off with Ashley since I really, really, REALLY, don’t like Ashley.
Pros: Alright, Ashley was one of 2 options for a male Shepard to romance in Mass Effect 1, so naturally I tended to connect with her since she was a soldier and so was my Shepard. After a long time of making up crappy poetry just to strike conversation near the end of the game, I finally did get to romance her and it was like “eh.” Ashley definitely has some moments with her poetry that make you think beyond the basics and into our entire world we live in, but her absence in Mass Effect 2 really made me rethink her as my romance, which leads me to…
Cons: Ashley is a jerk in Mass Effect 2. Period. She gets mad at Shepard for dying and not contacting her and joining Cerberus. Come on Ash, Shepard died 2 years ago and you get mad at him over a phone call? By the time she apologized, I was completely done with Ashley, there was no reason to pursue someone who flip-flops so easily and doesn’t have the mental capacity to understand death and working with a company that saves you from it. Her poetry also gets cheesy at times, I almost have a need to skip it since she could just say what’s on her mind without citing some famous poet.
Tali’zorah vas Normandy
Pros: When I first found out Tali was a potential romance in Mass Effect 2, I threw down my controller and popped in Mass Effect 1 so my playthrough wouldn’t have to feature Ashley in my life and instead that purple helmet goddess that is Tali. First I absolutely adore her voice, she rolls her R’s and she never seems too old or gruff. She’s vulnerable but also very headstrong, and had a few cute lines in Mass Effect 1 that made me wish she was a romance option in the first place. Even without her romance, Garrus gets into a relationship, and since he’s my favorite squaddie, I find it appropriate that they are able to get together even without my interference. Oh and did I mention her suit is snug in all the right places?
Cons: Her helmet, this is kind of neutral, but for [redacted] co-worker, I’ll put it in Cons. Since you only see her without her helmet if you romance her, Tali is believed to be ugly by some which is understandable. She has 3 fingers on each hand which might be a turn off. Her requirements in getting help can be frustrating, (to me it’s more fun but this is from HIS perspective), and she might seem whiny or needy at times. She’s also limited to shotguns and pistols which can be an annoyance on higher difficulties because she can be a liability in close quarters. On the race aspect, the Quarians DID create the geth and therefore are responsible for most of the events in Mass Effect 1, and spend most of their time moping about the loss of their planet.
Overall, it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks but you. We all have our preferences in characters and personality, but it’s always interesting to see who likes who and who doesn’t like who. For me I’ll be staying with Garrus and Tali all day, they’ve been there from the start of Mass Effect and were there for me until the very end.