Mass Effect 3 Rachni Queen choice: what to do with the queen or clone

Mass Effect 3 is full of choices, and one of the most difficult ones concerns an old friend - the Rachni Queen, last directly seen during the first Mass Effect.

The Rachni Queen shows up a little way into ME3 in a mission called Attican Traverse: Krogan Team or Attican Traverse: The Rachni, with the name of the mission depending on decisions you made in ME1. In fact, the outcome of this mission varies largely depending on something you did in that game - this is one of the missions where the consequences of choices across the trilogy can be most keenly felt. 

On this page, we explain the outcome of this mission in detail, as well as the choices you can make.


ME3 Rachni Queen choice: what do to do with the queen or clone

This mission is actually a great example of how choice works in the Mass Effect Trilogy in general. There's consequences for past actions, but there's always a mirror alternative so that the game can continue.

For example, if the Rachni Queen is alive, she appears. If she is not, she has been cloned by the Reapers - but the clone is slightly different, and results in a different outcome. Similarly, if Grunt survived his stint in the ME2 suicide squad, he appears here. If not he's replaced with another friendly Krogan ally.

After fighting your way through the area where the Reapers are supposedly breeding an army of Rachni, and the defenses guarding them, you will come across a Rachni Queen. It'll either be the original or the clone, dependind on what you decided on Noveria back in ME1. 

You'll have a choice of what to do with the queen - sparing her and having her join the war effort, or leaving her to die. While the choice is always the same, the outcome varies quite drastically depending on if it's the real, original Rachni Queen or if it's the clone.

The result will have a pretty significant impact on the War Assets and Total Military Score that ultimately helps to determine your ME3 ending choices, so read on carefully:


If the Rachni Queen was spared on Noveria in ME1

These paths require you to have been merciful and allowed the Rachni Queen to live on and survive the events on Noveria back in Mass Effect 1. After a brief nod your way during an ME2 side quest, you now find the queen again on Utukku in ME3. Here, you can choose her fate once again:

  • If you leave the Queen to her fate: she will quietly die there, left behind forever, and will not factor into the rest of ME3 at all. Aralakh Company, the band of Krogan you help, become a War Asset worth 25 points, and 50 points if Grunt is alive.
  • If you enlist the help of the Rachni Queen help: the Rachni Queen will join the War Effort, with her Rachni Workers adding 100 points of War Assets to your Military Strength. However, Aralakh Company takes heavy losses in the progress, and so you don't get that 25 points.

If the Rachni Queen was killed on Noveria in ME1

If the Rachni Queen was killed back on Noveria during the events of Mass Effect 1, the Reapers have produced a clone queen. This queen is much more hostile to you throughout the mission, though you're faced with a choice all the same. This is the default decision if you didn't play ME1 and simply started a new game in ME2, by the way.

  • If you leave the Queen to her fate: she will die - much more loudly than the real queen, aggressively cursing Shepard and trying to exact revenge. Aralakh Company joins the fight as a 25 point War Asset, and is worth an additional 25 points if Grunt is alive.
  • If you enlist the help of the Clone Rachni Queen: the clone isn't the same Rachni Queen, and ultimately will betray you. You initially get 100 points of Rachni support for the war; but ultimately they turn on you later in the game, and an email will reveal that they have fleed. The 100 points is removed, but in addition they do 100 points of damage to the Alliance Engineering Corps and wipe out Aralakh Company, meaning a net loss of over 200 war assets.

If Grunt was loyal in ME2, survived the suicide mission, and survives the events during this mission, he joins the war effort and is worth 25 points. This is separate from his point influence over Aralakh Company, and he'll always be there so long as he's alive, whatever you do with the queen.