No chance to play yet, how's it feel???

Black Elk

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A neat fact about Voice 8, I didn't try female voices there as I play with a male character. Have you checked out her Narrator outtakes? They are just awesome. https://www.youtube.com/@AmeliaTyler/videos

I wonder, why do you restart instead of continuing? I guess it would be hard to tell exactly, just curious about possible reasons? Act 3 bugs/performance issues/unfinished status? Content missed during your previous playthroughs? Not being comfortable with choices you've made regarding NPCs in the party / romances?

That might be the funniest outtake I've ever heard!!! lol So much authority! Well, that had me in stitches. Good find!


They're all great! My goodness! Those are hilarious

Yeah some combination of general restartitus + enjoying the early levels cause they remind me of BG1 probably. Who could say for sure. Par for the course for me though, least in a D&D game. Show me a Char Creator and I'm bound to just live there half the time haha. Each roll out I say, yup going to commit here no doubt, but then I miss Minthara or Karlach or whoever and hear the sirens call again. Probably when I have the party of 6 going I'd have an easier time, cause I do think rolling with a deeper crew and having those companion interactions would have me less interested in simultaneous saves or this sort of multi playthrough method I can fall into quite easily.

I'll switch around PCs a fair bit, based mostly on the voice sets I enjoy. I think these cinematic CRPGs are still kinda novel in that they remove that barrier which would for the most part still be present in TTRPG ya know. It's more like a film in that way I think, where you follow your lead whoever it happens to be. On the computer you can get an angle on it more like Tiresias just switching back and forth every other life. I think it's a cliche to have a couple PCs that are like anima/animus projection that you find attractive, a few that are like step into the shoes what ifs, one that's like as if you just got dropped into the world as yourself (but shredded with a hulk frame lol) again probably pretty standard I'd guess, but that's totally me here. Gotta have the grab bag

Oh my, wait what!? This gal is Wenduag too?!

Haha no wonder! Legs for days! Oh goodness, well that would explain voice 8 scratching some kind of itch right lol. I felt bad for Lann, almost, we ditched him so many times in that one. I never did get around to playing DOS2. When it came out was one of those relationship imploding stressful job type periods in life, just poor timing I guess, so I didn't know what Malady meant (great name though) but I guess it all sorta clicks now. Great casting decision whoever made that call. I've been getting a lot out that one. Probably mileage would vary there, based on what sort of stuff grabs people in the tone and the tenor. It's probably quite different for many based on totally random preferences and quirks we all have I guess. But definitely, I'm having fun still!

Catch ya on the next out
 
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Antimatter

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Yeah, I also preferred Wenduag to Lann, just couldn't get past her voice and other features. 🕷️ She also voiced Nyrissa in P:K, and guess what, I romanced Nyrissa there.

Malady was one of the best parts of D:OS 2 (and the game had many great parts). So ofc when I learned Amelya would be a Narrator for BG3 3.5 years ago, I got immediately interested in listening to the Narrator. You might appreciate that she's currently considering voicing audiobooks and guided meditations.

Should be indeed that tone and tenor.

It sounds tough about your life period back then, but it's good that it's over. D:OS 2 is a different game than BG3, so if the main draw of BG3 is not the cinematic feel and D&D themes, I'd still recommend it to you even after BG3 (which is a better game overall). I think combat is still better (and more challenging) in D:OS 2, but that is very IMHO.
 

Antimatter

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Act2 finished.png


Feeling among the privileged 30% of the players.

Yes, 192 hours later, I finally finished Act 2. What a journey! Totally worth it. Posting screenshots below, without context they're hardly spoilery. So far so good. Could be even better, e.g. (spoiler) this final Act 2 dialogue felt like a bug the first time I saw it, but overall, very rewarding. And I finally know who the night visitor / The Guardian is. Took me 3.5+ years. :oops:

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Cahir

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Ok, it's time for my review of Baldur's Gate 3. I'll try to be as objective as possible, although I gotta warn you, I LOVE THIS GAME. It's one of the best games I've played in years.

Having said that, here's my breakdown, what I loved and what I didn't.

Things that are exceptional:
  • Cinematics: although this is not the level of quality we've seen in games like Death Stranding or The Last of Us, it's still unprecedented in crpgs. There are still some bugs, like weird camera angles happen, but overall it's outstanding. This is a new standard, whether other studios like it or not. Fantastic job, Larian.
  • Reactivity: Even if 17.000 endings was likely just a misguided PR, the level of reactivity in BG3 is nothing I've seen in any other computer game to date. I just started another playthrough, and it already feels completely different, even if there is a lot of overlapping with my first run. The sheer number of decisions to make only in the last stage of the game was overwhelming. Add to it choices made in act 1 an 2 and the number of different outcomes will be simply insane. Hundreds, for sure. Even if I couldn't resist the urge to not save scum, because of fear of messing something up with quests or companion reactions, with my second playthrough I already see that failing skill checks can be (and often is) equally fun.
  • Voice acting: It's what simply of the best I've seen. Whoever cast companions should get a medal. Every one of them is voiced wonderfully, with some first-class performances and my favourites, like Devora Wilde (Lae'zel), Samantha Béart (Karlach) or Neil Newborn (Astarion). But it's not only companions, but other characters too. Listening to Amelia Tyler (Narrator), Andrew Wincott (Raphael), J.K. Simmons (Kethric Thorm), Jason Isaacks (Enver Gortash) or Maggie Robertson (Orin the Read) is pure poetry. A stunning job and money well spent.
  • Music: There is just one game released this year, I'd value higher when it comes to music - Stray Gods. But that game is role-playing musical, so it's no wonder it has exceptional music. Music in BG3 is simply magical, with some tracks (like "Down by the River") that are already iconic. When I heard the music during a confrontation with a certain powerful inhabitant of the Hell, my jaw just dropped to the ground. It was magnificent.
  • Companions: It rarely happens, there is not a single companion I don't like in a crpg game. There is usually one, or more, that rub me the wrong way for whatever reason, but I absolutely love all companions in BG3. But what is particularly interesting is that two companions, that I didn't like at the very beginning (Lae'zel and Astarion) turned out one of my favourite during the course of the game.
  • Location design: It's hard for me to find crpg with better location design. Each location is unique, handcrafted, and you rarely can notice reused parts. Druid's Grove, Goblin Camp, the Underdark, Grym's Forge, the Cursed Lands, the whole city of Baldur's Gate. These are all fantastic places, you can explore for hours and hours.
  • Setting: I love Forgotten Realms, so it's no surprise this is something I would list as something exceptional, but apart from the setting itself, BG3 does a great job of presenting this world to the player. It really does feel like FR.
Things that are great:
  • Itemization: There are tons of various items, with interesting abilities, available in the game. Maybe even too much. But for everyone who likes to have a multitude of gear options, BG3 provides a plenty of choice. What I lack is the more detailed lore description, akin to BG1/BG2.
  • Combat design: This is something that probably surprised me the most positively. I haven't had a feeling to go from one fight to another as I've had playing Divinity: Original Sin 2. Here, every combat encounter feels handcrafted and well thought. The only problem is that the difficulty of those encounters is uneven, most fights on Tactical in Act 1 and 2 were less challenging than I'd hoped (even if I'm generally no expert tactician), while the difficulty curve in act 3 went up significantly. But the encounter staging and combat environment are really well done.
  • 5ed D&D implementation: I don't know much about 5ed, I haven't played it, but the way Larian implemented it feels natural. There are plenty of options available for the player when it comes to race, class and skills.
Things that are not great:
  • UI and inventory management: It's one of the most criticized aspects of BG3, and rightfully so. I gave it more thought and came into conclusion, it doesn't need complete redesign, but some few key improvements: a) the way to access inventory for all companions, not only those that are in the core team; b) possibility to access camp cache anytime (even outside of camp and on vendor screen); c) more filtering options (e.g. filtering by specific item type); d) better access to some hidden functions (e.g. learning spells from scrolls for wizards). BG3 also lacks a detailed tutorial - 5ed is not easy to learn and those who don't know it, may have a hard time to understand the inns and outs of this game.
  • Character creation: I have two major issues with character creation. Firstly... it's very chaotic. The fact that you can change things in any order is unintuitive and can result in forgetting to set some things (e.g. in my second playthrough, I forgot to... change the ability scores and ended up with default paladin values...). The second issue is the fact that Larian based the creation on face presets. This would work if there were 100 or so faces to pick. This would allow picking the face that is close to what you really want. Unfortunately, Larian only offered a couple of preset faces for each race and sex and no way to fine-tune those faces (by e.g. changing the shape of nose, ears, mouth etc.).
  • Silent protagonist: I realise how expensive would be to record the dialogue lines for protagonist, especially taking into consideration variants for different races, but unfortunately the lack of voice is very immersion breaking here. Adding to the fact the silly facial expressions, that suppose to imitate protagonist's emotions, this almost ruins the feel of the scene, unless until one get used to it. I'm petty sure those facial expressions would feel much more natural if the protagonist was voiced. The fact that also origin characters are voiceless is something I can't understand and accept. It's almost a criminal.
  • Cut content: Personally, I don't think it's as bad as many pictures it, but there are parts that were hit severely with cut content. The most glaring example is Astarion's side quest, especially Cazador's mansion. Those who tried to find a way to enter it know what I'm talking about. But that's not it, the whole quest conclusion feels like there was much more planned for poor Astarion. The other example is ending. It felt like a series of cutscenes that lacked the flow. It almost looked like it was cut, because Larian thought that an extended ending (take Return of the King, for example) would be a bad thing. I beg to differ. I'd love to have this kind of meaty, lenghty ending. The lack of epilogues, that would explain how your actions during the course of the game affected your companions or other NPCs in the game, are very disappointing.
Despite the fact BG3 is not ideal and there are some things that need more love in future patches, I'd rate the game as... 10/10.
 

Antimatter

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Finally - finally (!!!) had a fight (in Act 3) where I felt challenged in a good way. I don't remember the same level of threat since mid-Act 1. Maybe all that is needed is to include more lvl 16 enemies into the game where your level is 12 max (aka Pathfinder approach). Still, won on the first attempt without any meta-knowledge about this particular encounter.

Not only that, the fight was actually long enough so that I could try all spells I had. Usually, combat ends very quickly for me. It was so rewarding to finally turn someone - a big nasty boss - into a sheep.

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Now every character in my party wields at least one legendary weapon. Feels badass.
 

Urdnot_Wrex

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Between all the great stuff, I have to go on about the negative points a bit again.
The camera is driving me nuts. In combination with the partially hidden vertical layers of scenery and buildings and the odd pathfinding, it's annoying. I don't know how often I have accidentally clicked gods-know-where on the wrong level of a building or cave just to know and see where I'm going and then had to frantically stop everyone from running into traps, clouds, fire, triggering a fight and whatnot.
Also, yay for vertical stuff but if I'm only exploring, would it really be so hard to make my character jump automatically if I want to reach a place that is within my normal jumping distance? Do I *have* to manually select jump, even if everyone else will then follow me automatically?
Also, if someone doesn't follow for some reason and I select them, everyone jumps back to the selected character unless I remember to unlink them first...

Not to mention the fact that clicking on an item makes you pick it up, so maneuvering in a building with several levels and rooms where only half is visible can easily mean accidentally stealing an item simply because I clicked somewhere unseen to move my guys around.

Maybe it's just me but that part, along with the chaotic clutter of inventory management, is really something I'd like to change if I could.
People complained about similar camera issues in Divinity: Original Sin 2, but there it didn't bother me much, probably because the terrain layout was different.

But then, it's traditional, isn't it? Who didn't have pathfinding issues in BG2, with one toon in Boots of Speed running the wrong way and aggroing the whole Underdark?

On a completely different note, my overly curious bard has been firmly on the good side but is sorely tempted to see what happens if you just use the tadpole a tiny little bit, just to see what happens...
 

Black Elk

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For real though!

I suppose it must be a testament to the strength of some other things in BG3, that I'm still able to enjoy the game despite it having the most jank cam and movement controls I've ever experienced in a modern game lol

When they can make something as simple as walking up a flight of stairs or climbing a ladder that nerve-racking, ya know. Sometimes positioning my cursor feels like the 9th level of Hell for my Y axis inversion hehe. Thresholds have been borked for a while now too, I think since PS5 came out? because on a controller you rarely need to leave WASD, except that in every combat you're going to need to get that cursor around, and it's pegged to the cam position. Just not being able to rotate my pitch up at all for the camera, that sort of stuff. It's enough to have me jumping my characters off a bridge sometimes, like straight into that chasm. You know, just to make a telemetric point hehe. I can't really play the game with a controller at all sans mods, so exclusively M&K I guess.

I think what a game like this needs is something much more action/adventure for the casual exploration controls, since that's still like fully one half of the entire game.

When in turn based mode the single most frustrating thing for me is the intra-party body block. So not being able to pass through friendly space to complete a jump or dash by, reach an enemy etc. Summons getting in the way of your own movement. Movement previews not aligning with the field of view you're given on the ground plane. Stuff like that gets very irksome.

I think we should just see our party members do a little jostle and let out some barks, while they push past each other. We also need away to select or select out all for hostiles/non-hostiles/friendlies or the environment when targeting. Or just for the avatars/corpses/interactibles not to take up so much space, with ways to ghost past stuff in the cursor previews. I think that should take precedence over something like exact position on save/reload, but maybe that's the whole deal on that? I really don't know honestly, or understand why it needs to be the way it is now. It definitely does remind me of pathing woes in early days for BG1 though.

Inventory management and hotbar tetris for BG3 is similar for me, like quite rough if you're using the auto, and onerous to manage if you're trying to customize it. I gave up on trying to make a hotbar and radial icon arrangement that I could switch between on the fly. Then just gave up on a controller altogether, even though I still think that layout could be more comfortable for me over the long haul, but I can padmap anything so not really, or not right now at least.

Yesterday I watched a gal playing the game who had the most beautiful and elegantly arranged hotbar I think I've ever seen. Like complete with color coodrination and all the inventory just squeaky clean for ready switching. She had the rib cage used, and the book with the hidden flask for scrolls, each bag with a purpose and easy to visualize. Everything extraneous stripped away for ease of use, to suit her party comp and the demands of the situation. Watching her play was like, 'damn, those are some gameplay goals right there!' It was the one where Devora Wilde's stream raided into another one at the end, and the Darkest Dame was just like mopping the floor in act 3 tactician with everyone totally respec'd and using Wyll as an origin. It's was hilarious and enlightening!



She got raided by the Performer's fanclub of like a thousand people, right in the midst of a badass Act III fight vs Gortash's robocops and the Megazord - Totally still rocked it with complete composure, and as the 'Heart of the Gate' lol.

Happens at like 3:48:00 or thereabouts. It was so perfect! With Lae'zel in Gale's inventory lol. Highlight of the month right there! Great stuff. Picks up again at like 4:00:00 for the action

Like just to see the default UI managed with such purpose. Learned a lot in that last hour!

One thing I do find cool, and it will probably get overlooked for being kinda too obvious, but I gotta imagine BG3 is really doing a lot to popularize D&D writ large right now. It's like "I've got good news. That gum you like is going to come back in style." And I guess it did lol. Like right on target with the 20 year afterlife. So BG3 kinda bridges the generational divides a bit. Like what other game could have me out the woodwork again checking out random stuff like that? probably not many. It takes a BG I guess!
 
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Urdnot_Wrex

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Hahaha... as much as I appreciate showing older people in games as active and not just giving wise comments, a little more realism wouldn't hurt. Like, give her a short sword or a spear or bow or something, but a woman of her physique and age in half plate and with a huge two-handed axe on her back? :ROFLMAO:
That thing would be more fitting for a half-giant.


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OrlonKronsteen

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Hahaha... as much as I appreciate showing older people in games as active and not just giving wise comments, a little more realism wouldn't hurt. Like, give her a short sword or a spear or bow or something, but a woman of her physique and age in half plate and with a huge two-handed axe on her back? :ROFLMAO:
That thing would be more fitting for a half-giant.
I'm younger than her, and I'm dual-wielding butter knives these days - spatulas for blunt. Maybe I'm just an underachiever, though. 😂
 

Urdnot_Wrex

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I don't know what's wrong with me but since I've reached Wyrm's Crossing I'm not in the mood to continue. I can't even really say why. Maneuvering between and in all those buildings makes exploration less fun to me, with all the camera and pathfinding stuff I mentioned before.
Also, there are lots of people so it's difficult to realize who might be important and who isn't and I'm losing patience talking to everyone, and I'm losing track of my objective and what I was supposed to do where and where I've been already and why.
Tons of containers to check too, but most of them contain only garbage, but if I don't check them all, I'll eventually be out of camping supplies.
At least something like lucky finds or such would be nice, even if rare. I'm tired of finding the same pot lids, empty bottles, rotten carrots and candlesticks everywhere. In D:OS2 at least rarely we could find something cool, or use the random stuff to craft. If you place so many containers that can be looted, at least make it a little more interesting to check them out. Even the hidden treasure chests often have meh content and very little gold.
It would also be super helpful if I could click on the map to zoom into places.

Ever since reaching Rivington/Wyrm's Crossing (I got past the Steel Watch yesterday) trying to continue feels like a chore more than fun.

Maybe it's just because that kind of gameplay is better done in very long sessions of several hours because it otherwise lacks variety and a two hour session contains only tedious parts, but right now I really think I need to put the game back on the shelf or I'll spoil the experience. Hopefully it'll be easy to get back into after a break.
 

Black Elk

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This was my experience as well. I think the game needed something between Wyrm's Rock and the City proper, mainly for the pacing. It's just a lot of urban spawl all at once without enough direction. I think the issue is also that it's pretty tough to progress the main quest without a lot of chit chattiness and puzzling around. Like if you're playing as a Durge there were several points where I thought "why would I even care?" Then I started to treat it like "the army" that everyone had been talking about was really just Lae'zel, Shadowheart and Minthara, and I wasted pretty much everyone that wasn't on 4 legs... lol.

This I found to be a more straightforward approach and gave me a bit more of what I expected. Murder hobo meets sex and the city basically, just clearing it out like we would a wilderness area in BG1 street by street. This has been pretty hard, as the guards will spawn continuously if you're all super brazen about it, so you gotta really work some breaks in there, cause even the Slayer needs to take a nap sometimes hehe.

I struggled mightily with lag for this portion of the game after the last hotfix, and when I finally got that sorted, I spent the rest of the night punishing the robocops lol. I capped these on a lark, while battling Vulkan vs Dx11 like FPS Highlander hehe. Heavy spoilers, but we took it to the Rock for revenge, and that pretty much set the tone. Now I'm having fun again hehe.


Wyrm's Rock blitz battle, Act III spoilers*

Some highlights as Drow Durge, Act III spoilers*

ps. Here's my next idea... This is Xvartav

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He was created mostly as an unfortunate accident after many CTD experiments in Vulkan, but my headcanon for him is now pretty complex and overblown lol.

From the Xvartavarious-Ursa branch of a lesser known line of Gullykin halflings. According to rumor (and cautionary tales) his namesake was the lone survivor of a terrible calamity that befell the Sword Coast some hundred years before, remembered now only in hushed whispers as the season of the "Great Scorcher." Found exposed in the wilderness by some overly charitable passers by. Rescued thanks to Halflings, with hearts much stronger than most, adopted and trained in their ways. But always the call of the Cave Bear and revenge seems to follow along after him! Going for a Magua vibe there. "The Lord of Murder shall parish, but..." you know how it goes. We'll see if he's got what it takes to hit the big time on the redux lol.
 
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Urdnot_Wrex

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This was my experience as well. I think the game needed something between Wyrm's Rock and the City proper, mainly for the pacing. It's just a lot of urban spawl all at once without enough direction. I think the issue is also that it's pretty tough to progress the main quest without a lot of chit chattiness and puzzling around.

I guess I'll just keep going then until I get through that part, I was a bit worried the whole game was going to be like this from now on. I liked the half wilderness areas a lot more.
But good to know the fortress and the city proper don't feel like that.
 

Antimatter

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You don't need to loot every container. If you are worried about camp supplies, lots of traders sell them, they're cheap. I think at this point of the game, it makes sense NOT to loot every crate and just grab really valuable stuff, like picking locks on safes and such. Unlike DOS2, this game doesn't have RNG loot, so don't spend time on that if you don't want to gather all possible buskets and rotten food.

Rivington was a bit disappointing, this is true. But the city in front of you is MUCH better. That's where some of the best quests in the game happen. I think the city looks and feels great, with one exception that I mentioned in another thread.

As for who is important, and who is not, look at the mini-map or open the whole map. All important NPCs will be shown there with their names. And yes, you will be meeting a ton of new people. Remember how you entered the BG city in BG1 after the wilderness? It's the same situation (or problem for some players).

That sad, BG3 is a long game. Probably even looooong long. It's ok to take a step out and play other games, it's a good moment for that. A bit similar to DOS2 where you could take a pause when reaching Act 3.
 

Urdnot_Wrex

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Rivington was a bit disappointing, this is true. But the city in front of you is MUCH better. That's where some of the best quests in the game happen. I think the city looks and feels great, with one exception that I mentioned in another thread

Thanks. That, together with what Elk said, gives me motivation to try to continue until I reach the city itself, because as I said in another thread, it has become a bit disheartening to see how I begin to grow tired of games lately, and I don't want to stop playing stuff entirely.

But if indeed even the highly anticipated BG3 that I now have about 120 hours in continues to feel like a chore, I'll probably stop playing entirely for a while.
 

Xzarloxara

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I just got to Wyrm's Crossing too. It seems a bit overwhelming so far; I am not sure which way to go first, really. I am still quite interested in continuing, but I am going to pace myself a bit, and take it slow. It is easy for me to get overwhelmed with large expansive areas full of stuff to do, but I am pretty sure I can manage if I take short breaks when I feel overwhelmed.
 

Urdnot_Wrex

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I have come to the conclusion for myself that I won't, with very rare and obvious exceptions where it's clear before going in that this is "character quest of person x" territory, try to see all content for all companions and keep swapping them out. I'm playing with my team, and unless I'm specifically going to places like Cazador's mansion, I won't constantly swap out characters to see who might be relevant for what, and simply leave that for another playthrough where I will play with a different team setup-
 
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