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Asexual players call Mass Effect’s new romance-removing mod ‘a very welcome addition’

Ed Nightingale September 9, 2021
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Mass Effect optional flirting mod

Mass Effect. (BioWare)

The Mass Effect games are known for their alien romances, but it’s all too easy to fall into an unintended relationship, which can be frustrating and off-putting for asexual and aromantic players.

Now there’s a new mod to fix that.

As spotted by The Gamer, a new Optional Flirting Mod is available that alters the dialogue wheel to ensure romances are opt-in only for players.

The mod can be applied to Mass Effect 3 as part of the Legendary Edition.

“I’ve always found it frustrating that being friendly in ME3 tends to lead to fending off romantic interest from people you just want to be friends with, unless you race to lock in your love interest before spending quality time with anyone else,” says mod creator phoenixsoul13 on the information page.

“The former’s annoying and the latter’s a rather immersion breaking solution (not to mention not a solution for people who don’t want to romance anyone).”

The mod re-arranges options on the dialogue wheel so that players can easily choose from a friendly option, a flirty option, and a renegade option.

It ensures romances aren’t assumed even if Shepherd is just being friendly.

The mod can also be used in conjunction with the More Gay Romances mod that so far adds in same-sex romances for Jack and Miranda.

Many LGBT+ fans of the game were disappointed at same-sex romances being cut in the original version of the game.

What’s more, the Optional Flirting Mod makes the game more accessible for asexual and aromantic players who may wish to experience the game without a romance.

“I loved the game, but the romances aren’t a make or break for me, plus BioWare has a nasty tendency to shoehorn you into ships you don’t want,” says Twitch streamer Pleasantly Twstd. “The mod is a very welcome addition for this ace chick!”

CauseImEd, another ace Twitch streamer, is also positive about the mod’s potential: “I think the mod is definitely a good feature for accessibility and comfort for ace/aro people. I would love to see more mods in the future that would allow both the flirting and sex to be options that are able to be toggled separately.”

Asexual representation is sadly missing in many games, with the Mass Effect series being notable for somewhat thrusting romance on the player.

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Related topics: gaming, LGBT gaming

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