Depending on the gender you choose at character creation, you have a couple of different romance options in Mass Effect 1. There are only a few romance options in Mass Effect 1, and since this is a remaster and not a redo, there’s not much that’s changed. There are basically a total of three NPCs you can romance. Each questline involves taking them on missions and fulfilling hidden options regarding dialogue. Here are each of the options you can pick from, as well as how to get each romance ending.
Male Romance Options
Ashley Williams is one of the first people you meet in the game. The stalwart badass becomes a companion of Shepard as a warrior, but she can become more.
Speak with Ashley after each main planet stage, and after you rescue Liara T’soni. These are the dialogue options you want to pay attention to if you want her as a romance option in Mass Effect 1. Each time you speak with her, you will build up that hidden meter that unlocks the final scene with Ashley. She generally responds well to the positive or Paragon options. Even if you’re doing a Renegade playthrough, you can still romance her though, as the binary options only really matter in the dialogues themselves.
There is one very important choice that you must make. When you’re on Virmire and have to choose Ashley and Kaidan, you must pick Ashley. If you choose to save Ashley, Kaidan will die, but your romance can continue. When you return to the Normandy, head to your quarters to find Ash and wrap up the romance ahead of the last mission.
Female Romance Options
Kaidan Alenko is another long-time ally of Shepard throughout the games, depending on how your choices in Mass Effect play out. The process for a female Shepard player to get Kaidan to love you is the same as any other. You need to build up your relationship and complete certain in-game requirements.
Just like any other option, check in with him after Feros, Noveria, and Therum, to continue your romance. During these convos, aim for the Paragon or neutral dialogue options when talking with him. He seems to respond best if you stay away from Renegade choices. You need to keep checking in with Kaidan to romance him, just like any other ME character.
When the Virmire mission occurs, you’re once again faced with the choice between Ash and Kaidan. It plays out exactly the same as with Ashley. Choose Kaidan to save the guy and continue your romance. Go speak with him before the final mission to wrap things up.
Male and Female Romance Options
Liara is an option for both the male and female versions of Shepard. The Asari are much more open like that. And yes, romancing Liara in Mass Effect 1 is basically the exact same as the other two. You do need to be very thorough, just like all the other options. Just keep looking for them on the Normandy and talking with them after each mission.
Liara is probably the easiest romance option in Mass Effect 1. Paragon options are also your best option when conversing with her. When you interact with her during the course of the game, always pick Paragon options. This makes it a bit harder for Renegade players as they will often take a hit when talking to her since she’s in the game so much.
There’s also some tension that can brew here. Since you can’t have two partners, you may get confronted if you try to romance both Liara and another of the two options. When confronted by the two, you have to make a choice. Shepard can suggest all three remain in a relationship, but Kaidan or Ashley will refuse, they don’t want to share. If you want to keep romancing Liara, choose Liara to continue the plot.