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Baldur’s Gate 3 Review, Analysis And Impression

11 months ago By AI Smith

The Baldur’s Gate saga is a living history of role-playing games in general and Western role-playing in particular. The launch of its first instalment in 1998 was a turning point for those of us who loved the role not only in video games but also around a table full of papers, dice, pencils, erasers and a Game Director screen, table that in turn was surrounded by a few friends who with their imagination and interpretation were able to mentally travel to other universes to live a lot of adventures.

That first instalment, for its time, managed to capture what were the rules of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (the most important tabletop role-playing game in history) perfectly to make us enjoy a very inspired fusion between real and virtual role-playing. which did nothing but improve with the second instalment, Baldur’s Gate 2: Shadows of Amn, published in the year 2000 (which was followed by the Throne of Bhaal expansion in 2001 ), remembered by many as the best Western role-playing game along with Planescape Torment. After the launch of that second instalment and its expansion, we spent too many years without hearing from the main saga (the Dark Alliance sub-saga was good but it had absolutely nothing to do with the essence of Baldur’s Gate) beyond a few timid relaunches of the two aforementioned video games in 2012 and 2013 with improved editions.

However, everything changed on June 6, 2019, since during the Stadia Connect event in which Google presented us with its cloud gaming service (which later turned out to be a failure ) we were also shown the first trailer for Baldur’s Gate 3. , a title that at that time planned to bring the saga back to life and which Larian Studios, a Belgian developer who earned a place among role-players with the Divinity saga and who had the difficult task of resurrecting one of the licenses most loved by veterans of the role.

The following year Baldur’s Gate 3 came into early access on Steam with the first act of the game’s main story, and from that moment Larian began collecting feedback from the community to improve the quality of his work while developing the game. rest of the project that finally ended up being released for our computers on August 3 (in September it will also reach PS5 and later on XSX/S), immediately becoming a mass success, ascending to the Steam elite as one of the 10 video games with the most simultaneous players in history and causing a great sensation not only among those of us who are more veterans with role-playing or among Dungeons & Dragons fans but also among a new wave of players who have been captivated by the magic of Faerûn and by the quality of a unique game.

Baldur’s Gate 3 has not only caught on with RPG veterans but with a new generation of players as well. Over the next few lines we are going to talk about our experience with Baldur’s Gate 3 in a unique journey, in a work that is not perfect, but that lays the foundations for a new golden age for the Western role that it will have in Larian’s work a benchmark to exploit and improve the genre in the coming years.

Also Read: Baldur’s Gate 3 Walkthrough Is The Entire Act 1: Swen Vincke Founder Of The Game

A very well-spun adventure at the narrative level

As the one who writes to you almost always likes to do at this moment, we are going to start by talking about the part of the narrative or the plot. As always, we are going to talk more about sensations and general concepts than about the plot itself of Baldur’s Gate 3, which many of you have already discovered by now, but if you have any doubts, if you want you can go to the following paragraphs of this analysis if you do not want even the slightest spoilage, especially if you have not started playing it. As most of you already know, the adventure begins with our character and some possible allies trapped in a strange ship controlled by the mind flayers, dangerous beings with the ambition to control everything within their reach and who begin by infecting us with some very ugly worms to transform us into their slaves under the control of a kind of hive mind to create an army and dominate the Kingdoms.

The plot of the adventure knows how to capture the interest of the player throughout the game. After escaping from the ship, an adventure will begin that led us to visit some of the most emblematic points of Faerûn while we discovered the secrets that surround that worm that we have in our head, the threat that hangs over this fantastic world and also the plots around it. the characters that accompany us on this adventure, who are protagonists on an equal footing with the main character.

In general, throughout the game the narrative rhythm is quite good, at all times it has maintained interest and has made us continue advancing, answering our questions and generating new ones to capture our attention until the final part of the game in a journey of more than 75 hours only for the main content that has not been long or heavy for us (something that can be easy in certain sections of such long games) at any time and that treats as adult players who have to take responsibility for their decisions and behaviour in Faerûn.

Of course, although the story has seemed very good and interesting to us at almost all times, it has so many great moments that new players, as well as lovers of D&D or the saga, will love, as well as small narrative failures at certain points, but They are so small that they can be set aside for the benefit of everything that Larian’s adventure offers us, which is not little, precisely.

We already commented on it in our text in which we told you about the first hours that we had lived with the final version of Baldur’s Gate 3 and we also want to highlight it in the analysis, because Larian’s game does everything possible to respect its origins (the rules of Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition) and to make us feel that we are inside a real role-playing game. Larian wants us to feel at all times that we are in a role-playing game with details such as the throwing of the dice and many other nods to them. From the character creation section or its progression to skill rolls, going through the behaviour of our characters, combat, trap detection, and a lot of mechanics present in the game, everything has a touch and an adaptation almost perfect version of the D&D rules brought to the world of video games.

In addition, the mechanics are being introduced in such a way that it is a title that, despite its depth, can be enjoyed by both rookies who are unaware of the basic rules of the game and even by veterans to learn or discover new things about D&D that have always been there but perhaps did not know. Larian takes everything into account, even what seems most unusual to you. For example, we played our main campaign with an enchantment specialist mage and with a background of charlatan to try to avoid as much as possible avoiding combats by manipulating the staff, although we had doubts at the beginning of the game if this specialization would not be so strange that it had not been taken into account or adapted well to the game since, on many occasions, this type of approach tends to break or is not well integrated because the main focus is usually the combat.

Luckily, that’s not the case in Baldur’s Gate 3. Thanks to this specialization, advantage rolls thanks to it, and background bonuses, we were able to get out of many sticky situations unscathed, manipulating our enemies in a unique way to get rid of the combat or provoke all kinds of most curious situations.

Of course, perhaps among all the mechanics that are incorporated, the one that still needs some polishing is that of stealth. For example, at various times we used the invisibility spell and did an action like draw or interact with an item causing the spell to break, something that shouldn’t happen. In addition, the vision of enemies should also be adjusted a bit more and, although it does not fall under stealth, the typical rogue mechanics such as disabling traps or opening locks are a bit broken, making it very easy for Astarion (the rogue of the group) to do these two tasks.

We also want to give a special mention to the great power of decision that we have at all times and the freedom to face all situations. Speaking internally in the writing and with other friends, there is not a single game of Baldur’s Gate 3 the same, either by facing combat differently or by choosing different options throughout it, making each game unique and even in the flesh of the person who writes to you has experienced two very different games, one with a magician who is the one with whom we completed the game and another with an explorer with whom I am enjoying a second round with very different things and new surprises that we have found myself along the way.

Finally, one aspect that makes Baldur’s Gate 3 immerse us even more in a role-playing game is the possibility of playing a complete game in cooperative mode, from start to finish, being able to play with four friends over the internet or with another adventure partner in a local cooperative with a split screen that makes the title even more enjoyable, in addition to the fact that the possibility of forming a group and starting or continuing the adventure is very well integrated.

A fight with a lot to offer

Fighting in Baldur’s Gate 3 is quite a delight. There is not much more to add to what we already told you in our initial impressions. The possibilities when it comes to dealing with enemies are practically endless, both due to the abilities or spells of our characters as well as the design of the settings, their orography or the arrangement of many elements that make the range enormous. We have had a great time during all the fights combining spells, creating combos of all kinds between spells or physical attacks, throwing our enemies down the stairs or throwing them into a river of lava, banishing them to another dimension, causing them to die buried by a rock and a long list of options that make it always satisfying to fight.

Baldur’s Gate 3 combat is a delight full of possibilities of all kinds

Apart from some little error here and there, the only big downside that we find in combat is in the artificial intelligence, especially of the allies that we cannot control, and that sometimes behave most erratically, passing without measure through dangerous areas or doing actions that do not make much sense and that may expose them too much during combat. In fact, during a crucial moment in the game, these allies do not flee from a place they should flee for their lives, affecting one of the missions we wanted to complete.

If we look at the enemy artificial intelligence, on most occasions it behaves quite well trying to surround us, focusing the damage where it should or using elements of the setting to its advantage (be careful with standing near a ledge because you can find yourself being pushed and flying towards death), although on other occasions they have also done somewhat strange things, getting a bit stuck, going through areas that it was not very advisable to step on or having the habit of not using the doors at any time, remaining isolated from combat.

An imperceptible barrier between the main campaign and the content… secondary?

In 2023, the debate on secondary missions in video games is the order of the day, although Larian Studios seems to have wanted to settle it beautifully with Baldur’s Gate 3, which is probably the game with the best secondary missions we have found so far. Larian gives a lesson on how optional or secondary content should be integrated into a video game in the middle of 2023. It is no longer just the number of interesting encounters and things to do in the world (the “baba yaga witch, the mushroom collector, some kobolds with a few too many drinks and many other examples) but also how the plots and subplots or Secondary narrative episodes are mixed with the main one in a harmonious way that in many moments of the game, we were not aware if we were playing the campaign, an optional plot or a mixture of both, giving Baldur’s Gate 3 a coherence unique in this sense.

If you have not yet started your game at this point or you are still playing, we recommend that you enjoy every one of the acts over low heat, soaking up everything that Baldur’s Gate 3 has to offer without being afraid to stop for a few minutes to read a small story present in a book (there are some gems) or investigate a mysterious healing house of the most interesting. In fact, not only is Baldur’s Gate 3’s optional content very good, but it provides a master class in how secondaries should be integrated into any RPG (and any genre) worth its salt in 2023. in which the filler content that does not contribute much and that only serves to add empty hours of play, present in a lot of titles, should begin to be part of the past.

An audiovisual finish at the height of an outstanding game

We are going to close the analysis with the technical section of Baldur’s Gate 3 which is up to the rest of the game and that is, directly, outstanding, both visually and auditorily. If we focus on what we can see, the level of detail of certain objects, the care with which Baldur’s Gate or all kinds of scenarios have been recreated is simply incredible.

At the level of textures and effects, it has a very good level and the only drawback that we find on a technical level is that of some facial expressions that are somewhat strange and contrast a bit with the rest of the experience. We also want to mention the great work of the translation of the texts that has been done in Baldur’s Gate 3. It doesn’t have to be easy to adapt such a huge title and the work of the localization team has been, without a doubt, brilliant.

On the other hand, the soundtrack is one of the best we have heard in recent years, with pieces that accompany the action very well at all times and certain themes that take us even deeper into what is happening in the game. On the other hand, we also really liked the dubbing into English. Finally, at the performance level, we already told you that the title was going very well on our team, with an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4080 graphics and an i9-11900K processor together with 64 GB of RAM and an SSD, exceeding 85 FPS at 1440p and 70 FPS at 4K with Ultra graphics using NVIDIA’s DLSS 2 technology in quality mode.

In addition, we also wanted to test the game on the ASUS ROG Ally to see if a more modest team could move it and the truth is that we can play more than solvent at 1080p, with low graphics and AMD FSR in Performance mode. If we play with the Ally in Performance at 15 W we get about 45 FPS and with Turbo mode at 25 W we can play between 45 FPS and 60 FPS depending on the area. As for bugs or errors, the most notable are certain problems that we have sometimes found in the camera and a couple of abrupt game crashes in 95 hours of play, so we do not believe that there is anything particularly serious that could alter what minimum a pleasant experience, or at least we have not found it.

Also Read: 5 Games That Can Beat Baldur’s Gate 3

Conclusions

Baldur’s Gate 3 is an outstanding title that will set a precedent in how Western role-playing games are made, a unique and very special video game that teaches a lesson in how to carefully adapt a tabletop role-playing game to a video game, a work of art The only one that intertwines the main missions with the secondary ones so that we are not aware of which is which and a work that tries to make us as responsible as possible for our actions, leaving us on record at all times that each choice or way of acting has its consequence and that neither those destined to be the greatest heroes of Faerûn can be freed from being responsible for their actions.

Larian’s work is, by far, one of the best experiences in the world of videogames in years, a title that will create a new generation of role-playing players and that will restore the illusion of this genre to many despite that it also has some bugs that need to be polished, such as the artificial intelligence of some enemies and, above all, of our allies (which can be somewhat frustrating) as well as certain stealth mechanics or some narrative flaws that detract a bit, but that They are almost nothing compared to what this outstanding work has to offer us because we are all heroes and the explorers and the hamsters celebrate it everywhere.

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