Baldur's Gate 3 Catch-All

detroit20 wrote:
Sorbicol wrote:

It’s quite easy to miss stuff in BG3, but I do regard that as a good thing - more developers need to be brave enough to be happy not everyone will see everything in their games.

My heart says, "Yes.", but my head says "No." The ongoing layoffs in the industry remind us just how risky and expensive it is to make video games. There is every incentive not to make content that will delight a very few, but that will never be seen by most.

In Episode 136 of the Nextlander podcast, Will Smith provided some high level costs for operating a development studio that were as eye-watering as they were eye-opening (about 1hr and 34 minutes in). It costs a lot of money to devise, create and test content.

And I think the numbers - where they are available - are clear and consistent. Most players don't even finish the games that they play. I remember seeing some startling numbers about completion rates for Baldur's Gate 3 that suggested that - five months after release - fewer than 1-in-5 players had finished the game.

And Baldur's Gate 3 isn't a vast sprawling open world game like, say, Dragon's Dogma 2 or Red Dead Redemption 2. I suspect that we will see considerably fewer, content-filled open world games in future because of the cost/benefit ratio... which is a shame because I'm loving the fact that there's so much to find in DD2.

I mean, the incentive is that it will delight players that enjoy that kind of exploration and serve an audience that isn't necessarily sated by more linear experiences. (Also, those aren't necessarily cheaper. The Last of Us 2/God of War 2 cost twice what BG3 did.)

It's just a question of deciding what to prioritize. If you want to have lots of branching and optional areas, you make cuts elsewhere.

So after a week long cool off period, I dove back into the fray. It was quite the odyssey!

Spoiler: Reminder

At the end of Act 2, I climbed the building to the Final Boss, evading a huge fight, but than found out a favorite NPC died as the fight in fact started without me

First, it took me 30m or so to find a save from before "it" happened. I even did a test run (teleporting is disabled) starting the fight and then Misty Stepping until I got confirmation. Reloaded, and spent 40 (fun) minutes in combat.. only to find it STILL HAPPENED. Did I miss it in my test run? Did I load the wrong save?

So I gave up, and just went back to the start of the Act II Finale. The first time, the NPC died AGAIN as they stupidly charged forward starting the fight before I could fire the first shot, and then refused to heal themselves or retreat in time. Next try I started turn based mode myself, so I could cast Cloudkill and Wall of Fire to soften the enemies up. FINALLY everyone survived, now I get to climb the tower again to do the actual Big Boss fight

I'm not sure whether I will finish the game, especially as the consensus seems to be that Act III is the one with pacing and bug issues, but I at least want to see the titular city before I call it quits!

I think people overstate the Act III issues a little, and you are free to ignore all the side quests / companion ending quests and just move to final sequence relatively quickly. That said you probably want to be levelled as much as you can before you get into the end game. Don't worry, the game warns you when this is.

Grinding my way through Act 3.

Spoiler:

Things I Liked:

- Karlach's monologue after you kill Gortash. But everyone already knows the voice-acting and characterization in this game is, by far, the best part.

- Beating up the sexcubus in the House of Hope. Eat Otto's Irresistable Dance you pervert!

- Matt Mercer as Minsc! Last page I said I didn't buy him as Minsc, and I didn't at first at all, but after a few more hours of gameplay, he's won me over. Mercer obviously isn't Jim Cummings, but he can do a pretty decent impression and he gets the characters vibe right.

Things I Didn't Like:

- Fighting whatsisname the Dragon under Baldur's Gate. Took 3 tries, then I looked up a guide online and realized we had to hide from the Lightning Spirit Bomb move or whatever, then it took three more tries before I realized the Aura of Protection could keep us safe.

- Again, the villains. I just don't really care about them. I'm playing to get to the epilogue, not to "finish the story," if you get what I mean. Like, I'm finishing not to see out the narrative, but just to see what happens.

Still, not far to go. I think now it's Raphael, Orin, and then the Evil Cerebellum.

dejanzie wrote:

I'm not sure whether I will finish the game, especially as the consensus seems to be that Act III is the one with pacing and bug issues, but I at least want to see the titular city before I call it quits!

It's definitely worth experiencing Baldur's Gate itself; it's probably the most enjoyable and interesting 'place' in the game. And it's probably the only location that one genuinely feels like one is exploring. There are lots of nooks and crannies to get into.

For me, the problems with the pacing stemmed from the number and scale of the combat encounters and the negative impact that this has on the balance between exploration, conversation and fighting. Put simply:

- there are a significant number of fights against large numbers of very touch enemies (there's one in particular that I think few player will remember with any fondness). It can take A LOT time to complete these fights successfully.
- there are a number of locations where the player basically moves from one fight to another... and then to another. Again, it can take A LOT of time to complete these locations successfully.

If I would fault Larian on anything, I would say that they fell into the trap of making everything in Act 3 climactic (turning everything up to 11, if you will). I get the rationale: the player and their party is stronger, so combat encounters must be harder too. But the mechanism for achieving are quite crude (i.e. stronger enemies... and more of 'em.)

Sometimes, the hardest part should be breaching the castle walls; storming the actual Keep should be easier.

You can push on towards the end if you like. But - as Sorbicol points out - it's very much in your interests to be as high a level as possible, because the end sequence is a bit of a bastard. Also, I think that not completing the companion quests means missing out on some of the most emotionally-affecting content. You've probably spent at least 60 hours with in their company, so its a shame not to resolve their stories.

Quick slightly dumb question: is there a best/preferred/canon race for playing Dark Urge?

I'm in the middle of a half-elf Rogue campaign trying to finish act 1, so naturally I just rolled up a female drow monk Tav, and considering the aforementioned DUrge Tav as well

Not really. Dragonborn is the default "canon" answer, but my Durge is a Half-Elf Bard (it's basically Lohse from Divinity 2). Do whatever you'd like, any Durge powers you might get are not tied to race/class at all, from what I understand.

I only just picked up that the githyanki all have gecko eyes.

Wonder if they decided to change their vision at all as a result.

Okay. This weekend:

1.) Get out of the House of Hope, fight Raphael
2.) Kill Orin
3.) Finally f**king finish? Maybe?

Prederick wrote:

Okay. This weekend:

1.) Get out of the House of Hope, fight Raphael
2.) Kill Orin
3.) Finally f**king finish? Maybe?

Narrator Voice wrote:

Prederick never did f**king finish Baldur's Gate 3. He did win the AFC Champions with J3 team Giravanz Kitakyushu though, an accomplishment that left him with both a sense of accomplishment and purposelessness he couldn't quite shake.

That is an incredibly cruel, hateful, mean, and accurate thing you said.