With four main branching options, talking can get confusing in Mass Effect: Andromeda. Here's what each conversation symbol means.

What Dialogue Icons Mean in Mass Effect: Andromeda

With four main branching options, talking can get confusing in Mass Effect: Andromeda. Here's what each conversation symbol means.
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Five long years after the previous entry and following a last minute release delay, Mass Effect: Andromeda has finally arrived on consoles and PC — rebooting the series in a new corner of the universe.

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With a new storyline and fresh characters, we’re also getting a revamped dialogue system and updated conversation wheel options. Gone is the more simplistic and binary paragon/renegade dialogue system (otherwise known to the savvy as “nice” and “mean”). 

Instead now you’ll choose a tone for Ryder’s conversation responses, which can range from strongly emotional to cold and detached. That’s right — now you can be mean and logical or nice and emotional rather than just “super altruist” or “total asshat”.

Alongside the extra options — and in a much-needed change to Bioware’s conversation system — your dialogue icons will also change to let you know if a response choice is going to shift the conversation ahead to a different point, or instead provide additional info you might need to know.

What Tone Choices Mean in Mass Effect: Andromeda

During certain conversations, you have four main options to select that will tweak and tinker with Ryder’s overall personality, as well as how the main character is viewed by others.

Sadly, these tones don’t have a huge impact on changing the primary storyline or altering future dialogue options, but they do serve as the main role playing mechanic for how you want to play Ryder and what sort of person he or she ends up being.

 Mass Effect: Andromeda Tone Choices

Tone choices are a bit different than the usual good/evil axis and consist of these four options:

  • Emotional: Marked by a small heart, these choices are sudden in-the-moment decisions and feature strong emotions like sympathy or hatred.
  • Logical: Marked by a cog wheel, these are the Spock-style choices that get to the point and say what they mean, but sometimes without much diplomacy.
  • Casual: Marked by a curved spiral without any sharp angles, these options don’t take life too seriously and try to de-escalate problems by joking and keeping things light.
  • Professional: Marked by a square spiral, these are no-nonsense options that draw on intelligence, but are usually very formal and respectful without any tomfoolery.

 Logical Tone Choice Icon

Branching Dialogue Options & Their Icons in Mass Effect: Andromeda

Besides the standard tone icons, there are four additional conversation wheel icons that can appear to let you know where a dialogue path is headed.

Rather than hoping one option doesn’t shut down other possibilities and having to re-load, these icons specifically tell you how something Ryder says will affect the upcoming paths of a conversation.

These four dialogue path options (and corresponding icons) are:

  • Branching Arrows: This cuts off the current line of dialog and moves to a new branch about a different subject or possibly a different part of the current subject.
  • Question Mark: Going down this path provides extra information. While it may result in a few sub-menus, it won’t lock you out of the current branching dialogue paths, so go ahead and pick these for learning more information before moving ahead.
  • Friendship: Marked by two stick figures next to each other, these options have you buddying up to someone and are used to move towards companion loyalty missions later in the game.
  • Flirting Large Heart: Picking these options puts you every so slightly closer towards those vaunted “softcore porn” scenes BioWare touted during Andromeda’s development. So click this way as often as you can, you pervs!

Branching Arrows Dialogue Option

Explore More In Andromeda

With a whole corner of a galaxy at your fingertips and countless worlds to explore, there’s obviously much, much more to do in Mass Effect: Andromeda than just stand around talking and flirting! Need help with some other aspect of the game? Be sure to check out our other Andromeda walkthroughs:

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Ty Arthur
Ty splits his time between writing horror fiction and writing about video games. After 25 years of gaming, Ty can firmly say that gaming peaked with Planescape Torment, but that doesn't mean he doesn't have a soft spot for games like Baldur's Gate, Fallout: New Vegas, Bioshock Infinite, and Horizon: Zero Dawn. He has previously written for GamerU and MetalUnderground. He also writes for PortalMonkey covering gaming laptops and peripherals.