musings · Uncategorized

Eugenics in Mass Effect and the Question it Poses

After some personal issues, I’m back with another meandering pointless post about video games!

Today I want to discuss Mass Effect: Andromeda. Again. Because despite the massive amount of shit the games getting, I still really like it and I enjoyed it a lot. Plus Jaal is probably one of the best Bioware boyfriends (after Dorian of course).

But there’s something I find myself thinking about when I play the Mass Effect games. Eugenics. Namely the Krogan problem as I like to call it. It’s a pretty interesting concept for a video game to include, mostly because it’s such a heavy subject. Eugenics is widely considered to be a terrible thing amongst most people (rightfully so). The idea is something supported by Nazis and other crazies who believe that there is a superior race (usually one they’re part of). It goes against everything that we as a society are supposed to believe in, at least for ourselves. We breed animals, dogs, cats, horses, to make them desirable. But as people we’re supposed to be above it. Not to mention the whole can of worms it opens about breeding out undesirable traits (race, sexuality, etc).

Which is why the way Mass Effect handles the Krogan is so interesting. Some of my favorite characters come from the new Mass Effect game and they’re Krogan. Drack is hilarious. He shows the love that the Krogan can possess for their family and I legit teared up a bit towards the end of his story arc with Kesh, who I also love. With characters like the, who you can’t help but love, it’s hard to justify the Genophage. These are characters you get to know during the course of the game and they become part of your character’s family. Seeing Kesh talk about trying to breed out the Genophage so that their children can survive.

However, in the second game Mordin makes a seemingly reasonable point about the Krogan. They did grow too much and destroy their homeworld. They were posed to destroy other worlds. Almost all the Krogans you meet are violent. They enjoy battling and they war against each other. They’re a bloodthirsty species so perhaps it was only appropriate for other species to step in and keep the peace.

But then again, Kesh doesn’t come across as remotely similar to the other Krogan. She’s actually a fairly apt politician. And for all his posturing, Drack is a kind, loving individual.

It’s interesting to ponder and there’s probably no right answer in the context of the games. But it’s something that should be thought about.

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