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Baldur's Gate 3 - ceremorphosis from Larian (TBA)


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Another nope for turn based. I loved the original games, but the way I played them was to pause at the start of each fight, then stack all my commands for everyone. That way it felt like I had more freedom than fixed turn based.

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I massive prefer Turn Based to RTwP - mostly because I end up pausing every few seconds anyway in the latter. I just prefer to have the time to think, especially in Larian RPGs as there's always a shit load to consider and keep in mind.

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My early thoughts on this.

 

My laptop doesn't run it very well, despite being above the minimum requirements. The in-game settings auto detects "Ultra", however GeForce Experience "optimises" everything to very low.  There is lip synching issues.  Clipping issues.  Awful pop-up.  Crashes to desktop. Bugs. All of the bugs. But, it's early access.  Larian have been super clear about that.  It's very early access and they are listening to feedback and already have the first round of patch notes and hot fixes ready. :)  If you ever watched the gameplay live streams with the devs, you could tell this was going to be one buggy hot mess.

 

With that out of the way!

 

I think I spent an hour in the character creation alone.  I've not yet met an NPC that I haven't liked, and more importantly the voice acting is super.  I think the narrator in particular is fantastic.  The facial animations and lip syncing when it works, makes me really excited for what this game could be.  I've seen what the game can look like on a high end spec, and it looks gorgeous.  I have a new machine on the way, so hopefully I'll get to experience that for myself in a couple of weeks! 

 

It's the most 5E video game I have ever played, I feel that they have translated the systems beautifully.  As a 5E D&D player, I don't think I could have asked for a better implementation.  I was very concerned that this would feel more like Divinity than Baldur's Gate, but I think it's safe to say that isn't the case.  The aesthetics and UI are very similar, of course, but it's different enough for me.  (I adore the Divinity series, but I didn't want a new Divinity set in a D&D world so that's quite the relief).  You can still do the whole exploding barrells, using potatoes as weapons, cause huge elemental explosions thing, but I feel that there is less emphasis on it. :) I'm trying really hard not to reload saves when I do terrible rolls on my skill checks and just living with the consequences.

 

I think I'm going to hold off playing much more until my new rig arrives and then get stuck in properly. :wub:

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I like it a whole lot. Played ten hours. Runs beautifully. One crash, one buggy conversation and a few camera wobbles. 

 

I wish it would explain the math that goes into hit percentages a little more rather than just show the end possibility. Then again I’m not sure bg2 did that either, I was very fluent in 2nd edition adnd and I have no clue about 5e so it might just be that. 

 

Combat is very toned down from dos2 in a good way. 

 

I was concerned about making a sequel to a series of games that was very much about one story that ended it but they’ve come up with a great way of carrying on the same tone and themes without repeating themselves. Still not sure about it being a ‘3’ but business gotta business as well. 

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2 hours ago, Faded said:

I wish it would explain the math that goes into hit percentages a little more rather than just show the end possibility. Then again I’m not sure bg2 did that either, I was very fluent in 2nd edition adnd and I have no clue about 5e so it might just be that. 

 

Can't speak to BG3 specifically, but 5e combat logic is a fair bit simpler than AD&D; no THAC0 for one thing. Chance to hit is:

 

Roll a D20, add any modifiers to your attack (for weapon attacks generally this'll be your Dex or Str modifier (for strength-based weapon Str 8 is -1, Str 10 is 0, Str 12 is +1 etc.); plus your proficiency modifier if your character is proficient in the weapon (+2 until you hit level 5, then it gradually increments by 1 every few levels); plus any special mods for the weapon (ye olde shortsword +1, etc.). Magic attacks are similar, but you're always proficient and they use whatever your class's casting attribute is - Int for wizards, Cha for bards and so on.

 

If the roll plus modifiers is greater than or equal to the target's AC, you hit.

 

And then there's difficulty class based spells, which auto-hit but allow the target a saving throw - again, a d20, based on whatever attribute the spell specifies. So fireball is a D20 + Dexterity modifier against the spellcaster's Intelligence-derived difficulty class (8 + INT modifier, possibly + an extra modifier if they have a specialisation of some kind).

 

Not sure how it's handled in BG3, but the main wrinkle in tabletop is you almost never get to see your opponent's stats, so don't know what AC you need to overcome, or what spells they're good at resisting, unless you've fought them before and can guess (or are metagaming). I always quite like having to play blind, but I don't know that that's as accepted a mechanic in modern CRPGs.

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58 minutes ago, Wiper said:

Not sure how it's handled in BG3, but the main wrinkle in tabletop is you almost never get to see your opponent's stats, so don't know what AC you need to overcome, or what spells they're good at resisting, unless you've fought them before and can guess (or are metagaming). I always quite like having to play blind, but I don't know that that's as accepted a mechanic in modern CRPGs.

 

This does lead to some amusing situations, such as one quest where we had to smash up a statue. I hit it with some spell or another that was hit vs. Reflex and rolled okay. The GM announces that I missed. "What? Did it move?" I asked, suddenly fearful that I'm not trying to break a statue, but rather a surprisingly dextrous man made out of stone sat on a plinth.

 

"No. It's just got a good Reflex save" comes the response.

 

I argue the point that the statue shouldn't really have a high reflex stage because it's a statue, and after a bit of a back and forth the GM concedes and I hit it and then roll fuck all damage, which is my punishment for questioning the GM. Next player hits it with a Con Save spell and the GM says that it auto hits because it's a statue and therefore doesn't have a Con save.

 

I argue the point that there's a chance that it does have a Con save, and probably a good one because it's a Statue, made out of stone.

 

I'm sure that BG3 will be much more consistent, though.

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3 hours ago, Wiper said:

 

 

Can't speak to BG3 specifically, but 5e combat logic is a fair bit simpler than AD&D; no THAC0 for one thing. Chance to hit is:

 

Roll a D20, add any modifiers to your attack (for weapon attacks generally this'll be your Dex or Str modifier (for strength-based weapon Str 8 is -1, Str 10 is 0, Str 12 is +1 etc.); plus your proficiency modifier if your character is proficient in the weapon (+2 until you hit level 5, then it gradually increments by 1 every few levels); plus any special mods for the weapon (ye olde shortsword +1, etc.). Magic attacks are similar, but you're always proficient and they use whatever your class's casting attribute is - Int for wizards, Cha for bards and so on.

 

If the roll plus modifiers is greater than or equal to the target's AC, you hit.

 

And then there's difficulty class based spells, which auto-hit but allow the target a saving throw - again, a d20, based on whatever attribute the spell specifies. So fireball is a D20 + Dexterity modifier against the spellcaster's Intelligence-derived difficulty class (8 + INT modifier, possibly + an extra modifier if they have a specialisation of some kind).

 

Not sure how it's handled in BG3, but the main wrinkle in tabletop is you almost never get to see your opponent's stats, so don't know what AC you need to overcome, or what spells they're good at resisting, unless you've fought them before and can guess (or are metagaming). I always quite like having to play blind, but I don't know that that's as accepted a mechanic in modern CRPGs.

This helps a lot thanks. 

 

I understand that thaco is very unintuitive but bigger armour numbers being better than smaller is one of those old man things I can’t shake not getting. 

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Turn-based combat is exactly the kind of thing I meant when saying that using the Baldur’s Gate name was unnecessary, and could even be detrimental. I don’t associate TB with Baldur’s Gate at all, and the thought of it gives me an odd, skin crawling sensation. 
 

I have to think if the game is otherwise good enough then I could get used to it, but still...skin crawling. 

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I think they’re being faithful to what they know and are comfortable with. Larian pretty much admitted they have no experience with something like RTWP. Which is fine, but as an old school Baldur’s Gate fan RTWP was a big part of the experience. That, combined with (understandably) losing the extreme visual detail of the originals doesn’t make this look or feel like a BG game at all to me. The branding is vestigial. 
 

My argument doesn’t take into account what constitutes a more faithful, D&D experience because tbh I don’t care. Insofar as it didn’t stop the old games from being fantastic RPGs. 

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This is technically beautiful and runs much better than I expected. I was worried from the videos because I did not like the tone or the writing much. It felt very "Divinity", which means being light hearted and silly for most of the time. I am still worried. Not that the Divinity writing didn't fit its style but I was expecting a darker and more mature writing based on the history of the series and how writing has generally evolved.

 

This probably means that it is going to be Divinity essentially but in a different costume and rules, which is ok, I guess, just not what I was expecting. I am not a fan of "oh, you have something special in you which makes you amazing and you can use that power to do whatever you want" storytelling mechanic. It felt revolutionary back then  but now it just seems like an excuse.

 

I never considered Larian particularly good in storytelling or story and it will be a harder pill to swallow in a game which has the BG name on it.

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BG was always fairly faithful. Turn on detailed combat logs and it’s basically adnd with characters resorting to auto attack if not given instructions otherwise. 

 

So if you take baldurs gate as a dnd game trying to be true to the source material starring a character that is in some way becoming something other/greater than he starts as, set in the forgotten realms then I think it’s worth the name. 

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Just now, Faded said:

BG was always fairly faithful. Turn on detailed combat logs and it’s basically adnd with characters resorting to auto attack if not given instructions otherwise. 

 

So if you take baldurs gate as a dnd game trying to be true to the source material starring a character that is in some way becoming something other/greater than he starts as, set in the forgotten realms then I think it’s worth the name. 

 

I still wouldn’t have gone with ‘3’ though. :)

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I'm going to give this a go on Stadia. I've not played D&D before; is this all going to be confusing as hell? Should I try and play it with a noob mate or should we try and learn the ropes solo first?

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6 minutes ago, Hass said:

I'm going to give this a go on Stadia. I've not played D&D before; is this all going to be confusing as hell? Should I try and play it with a noob mate or should we try and learn the ropes solo first?

The actual RPG mechanisms are mostly obfuscated behind the UI and you won't struggle, it explains it all well enough. Really it's just a case of higher numbers are better.

 

You'll get a sense of scale while playing.

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28 minutes ago, Doctor Shark said:

 

Is it as bad as "let's see...halibut... sheep's cheese... tomatoes..."?

 

I spun DoS EE up fairly recently and that particular bark has been toned down a great deal.

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Finally stuck a handful of hours in to this. It’s definitely janky but surprisingly solid, main main struggle is just how bastard difficult the combat is. Just tried a fight with some orcs and literally got tore to pieces before I even got a chance at a hit. Just did the same...

Spoiler

Got to a place where I’m trying to find a Githyanki priestess, their dragon killed some people and again, theee misses from my team, then two of them instakilled  


Feel like I’m missing something. YouTube beckons

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