8

In Mass Effect 1, Liara T'Soni explains to Shepard that intra-species conception (children from two Asari) is discouraged. Instead they favor inter-species conception to improve the genetic diversity of their species.

However, since the genetic material comes from both parents, and the Asari met other aliens species long ago, why don't all Asari look like hybrids (Asari-Turian or Asari-Krogan as an example)?

  • 6
    I presently don't have the references to back it up and provide necessary details, but in Asari reproduction all of the DNA comes from the mother. The "father"'s contribution only serves to randomize the DNA sequence in the offspring. In this way an Asari child may have different skin coloring, or even markings that may look like scales etc, but they are still Asari through and through. There are no Asari hybrids. – Xantec Apr 16 '12 at 20:30
13

From the Mass Effect Wiki (which is derived from the codex of the three games):

Although asari have one gender, they are not asexual. An asari provides two copies of her own genes to her offspring, which—regardless of the species or sex of the 'father'—is always an asari. The second set is altered in a unique process called melding, also known as the joining.

During melding, an asari consciously attunes her nervous system to her partner's, sending and receiving electrical impulses directly through the skin. A common phrase used before melding is "embrace eternity," presumably to help focus the partner's mind. Effectively, the asari and her partner briefly become one unified nervous system.

The partner can be another asari, or an alien of any gender. However, since the asari began encountering other sentient species, non-asari mates have become preferred for the diversity they provide. This reproductive process can lead to some confusion among non-asari, who might expect offspring with "mixed" genes. However, the offspring is always 100% asari as no DNA is taken from the partner, but is rather used as a "map" to randomize the genes of the offspring.

  • If melding = mating for asari then Shepard is hardly a loyal partner to anyone, he melds with Liara twice and that asari girl who was with the Thorian – Memor-X May 26 '14 at 5:53
  • I believe there was an Asari bartender in ME2 with a Krogan father? And she was more physical, and IIRC, had a lower voice? Am I assembling a hybrid memory from various sources? – VBartilucci Apr 25 '17 at 20:25
  • @VBartilucci: You're thinking of Matriarch Aethyta. She still looks 100% asari. – Kevin May 5 '18 at 18:50

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.