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Video Game / Baldur's Gate II
aka: Baldurs Gate 2

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Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn is the second game of the Baldur's Gate series, being a sequel to the original Baldur's Gate.

The game picks up almost immediately after the conclusion of the first. Once again, the player character's heritage has gotten them in some serious trouble. After being ambushed and captured, the player character is dragged to an underground fortress, wherein they meet the local Big Bad of the week- Irenicus, a mad wizard intent on torturing the protagonist until he achieves some unknown goal. After an exchange of wills, the protagonist escapes their bondage, meets back up with their party from the first game and eventually escapes the fortress, emerging into the city of Athkatla. After a short exchange and some further conflict, Irenicus makes off with one of your party members. Determined to get them back, take revenge on Irenicus and figure out what he's up to, you and your party set off into Athkatla, unaware of the dangers that lurk within...

While Baldur's Gate was far from sunshine and rainbows, it should be obvious from the above description that Baldur's Gate II is a far darker story than the first. It deals with themes of torture, dealing with a dark lineage, and revels in topics like murder, greed, and revenge. The game still tries to keep some of the humor around however, which manifests in returning characters like Minsc and Boo. Also notable are the expanded gameplay mechanics, such as a higher level cap, more spells and weapons, and the ability to import your character from the first game, with all their powers (though not their equipment) intact.

It had an expansion pack, Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal, which was just about large enough to count as a new game. Just like the original game, an Enhanced Edition was released in November 2013.

The game provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Actually Pretty Funny: At the climax of the Underdark sequence if the player tricks both Drow leaders into offering fake dragon eggs to their demonic patron the demon is willing to just peacefully return to the Abyss without accosting the player for losing his prize because the double deceit was hilarious to him.
  • Adaptational Jerkass: The Harpers. While not always kind in the Forgotten Realms setting they are an organisation devoted to doing good and generally quite accepting of different sorts of people regardless of background. In Shadows of Amn the Harpers will often treat the protagonist like a terrible threat even if they've done nothing but good deeds since they left Candlekeep. Granted the Harpers doing so are stated to be selfish types trying to use the idea of defeating a dangerous Bhaalspawn to advance their careers but the other Harpers seem to make little effort to investigate their claims.
  • Adventure Duo: In contrast to the first game, the second went to great lengths to avoid this trope and even split up any first game Adventure Duo members present in the second game by killing off the other partner.
  • Affectionate Pickpocket: Played with: Imoen suddenly starts acting all love-struck and swooning around Keldorn, much to his horror (since he is Lawful Good, married, and old enough to be her father). After making him squirm for a bit, Imoen chuckles gives him back the ring she's just stolen from him.
  • Already Undone for You: When attacking Bodhi for the last time, your allies Drizzt and the Shadow Thieves are encountered halfway through the crypt that had its traps and enemies intact.
  • The Almighty Dollar: Some locations are named after Waukeen, the goddess of money, trade, and wealth, also known as the "Merchant's Friend". Part of the game backstory is intrigue among merchants.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: A handful of races are this, but the drow in the Underdark arc are perhaps the best example. Their culture value Social Darwinism, backstabbing and in-fighting. The majority are utterly evil with virtually no redeeming features and only a few are Affably Evil.
  • Amazon Brigade: The game brings back Jaheira, Viconia and Imoen, and adds Aerie, Mazzy and Nalia. The Enhanced Edition adds Neera and Hexxat. However, it won't be advisable to have an Amazon Brigade 100% of the time. Irenicus' dungeon is fairly difficult to get out of without Minsc and/or Yoshimo in your party. Losing Imoen means you'll be stuck for a fair amount of time without a thief until you get Nalia, unless your character is one. In the Enhanced Edition you can create a full party from the beginning, if you want, averting this issue. However, the only way to solve certain characters' problems and do specific side quests is to have them join your party in the first place.
  • And I Must Scream:
    • The Soul Prison in the Underdark.
    • Victims of the Imprisonment spell. Thankfully they can be freed with a Freedom scroll.
  • And Your Reward Is Parenthood: If you romance Aerie, she will eventually become pregnant and give birth to your son between that game and Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal. The baby doesn't unlock any additional gameplay or story content, however, except for permanently occupying one of Aerie's quick-item slots.
  • Armor Is Useless:
    • This is the philosophy of the kensai kit, that a true master of their weapon need not enter battle with encumbrance.
    • At high levels, both the party and the enemies encountered will likely have such low THAC0 scores that armor won't make much of a difference. Suits can still be worth wearing for various magical bonuses they provide, such as resistance to various elemental damage types.
  • Artifact of Death: In the Cult of the Eyeless quest, the Shade of Amaunator gives you one half of a rod and sends you on a Fetch Quest to find the other half. The assembled rod was meant to be hidden away by the gods, who put a whole community in place to protect the shrine where one half was kept. The Shade warns you not to take the rod out of the sewers. If you do, the rod's power consumes you, and you die painfully.
  • Artifact Title: Baldur's Gate isn't visited at all in the second game. (Discounting the tutorial section, of course.) This leads to the irony that Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance is seen as less "real" "Baldur's Gate" than Shadows of Amn, even though the former takes place in Baldur's Gate and the latter doesn't.
  • Asshole Victim: The cowled wizards, considering they imprison Imoen for something that wasn't her fault, and one even implies they are going to use magic to force themselves on her, it's unlikely players will feel any pity for them when Irenicus massacres a bunch of them.
  • Avenging the Villain: Mae'var's lover shows up in the thief stronghold quests to try pulling this off.
  • Bag of Holding: Oh, quite literally. You get it sometime after you meet up with Irenicus.
  • Bag of Spilling:
    • Justified by getting captured between games. You get to keep all your skills, though, and a few special items are kept in a locker. Though indirectly it actually can be of the variant that your character is inexplicably no longer capable of what they were before. Since BG1 had no kits and a different proficiency system, importing a BG1 character into BG2 allows you to change from your base class to a kit and makes you reassign your proficiency points. So it's possible that your thief that backstabbed their way through BG1 will turn into a swashbuckler that can't backstab at all and will lose their proficiency in short swords because they are now specialized in daggers.
    • Apparently if your character has certain armor or items on them when you saved their character file and imorted them into Shadows of Amn, then those items will show up in Irenicus' dungeon. Unfortunately, it's only two items (from this list), one from the armor column and one from the Miscellaneous. The items labeled "default" are the ones you get if your character has nothing that matches or if you start the game with a newly-created character. If you try to use the load screen cheat, the items won't be in your inventory, so no getting duplicates that way.
    • A glitch in early versions of the game allowed this trope to be bypassed by the Player Character: All the items in BG1 exist in this game and an imported character starts the game with his or her equipment, but a script in the first cutscene (when Irenicus appears to torture you) strips your inventory. A swift player could pause the game in the space between loading being done and the cutscene beginning, drop their inventory on the floor, and then pick it all up again after the cutscene is done.
  • Balking Summoned Spirit: the Underdark questline culminates in your party accompanying a Drow priestess in summoning of a powerful demon. Your part in it was to deliver dragon eggs as part of a bargain with the demon. The priestess' daughter, who also participates, asks you to replace them with fakes and give the real eggs to her instead, so that she could take over mommy dear's place once the offended demon kills her. Indeed, if you do it, the demon is pissed and kills her. But. You can give the daughter another set of fakes. At this point, the demon finds the entire business so ridiculous he leaves laughing. (After killing her too, of course.)
  • Battle Couple: The player character and their love interest.
  • Beastly Bloodsports: The Copper Coronet Inn has a fighting ring that has animal fights that you can bet on. Doing so will cause any Druid or Ranger party members to become upset with you. In the drow city after you're disguised as a drow and get known well enough, you can compete in the arena against various monsters. Played with due to them being mostly creatures of human-like intelligence but still treated as effectively animals.
  • The Beastmaster:
    • A ranger kit that specialises in summoning animals to help out and has a familiar function. Is not very popular as it has the same armor restrictions as druids.
    • There is also the animal tamer for the pit fights, who, near the cells in the Copper Coronet, confronts you with the aid of several animals.
  • Beat Still, My Heart: In one part of a quest where you need to get one of these from a demon to be able to leave a particular dungeon. The expansion, Throne Of Bhaal, requires you to destroy one (in fact, two) in order to make an enemy vulnerable, allowing you to kill him.
  • Bedlam House: Spellhold, a prison for insane magic-users.
  • Beneath the Earth: A good portion of Baldur's Gate II takes place here, like the entire Chapter 5.
  • Betrayal by Inaction: A group of mercenary mages approaches the heroes, telling them that really don't like working for Baron Ployer, and that for a modest price they will not show up for his protection when they are going to confront him.
  • Beyond Redemption: Jon Irenicus's speech to Ellesime at the Tree of Life showed the latter that the former was a man who, up until that point, had been unrepentant and sadistic. Ellesime tries to reason with Irenicus about the love they used to share, but Irencius is so consumed by hatred that he won't back down from his Evil Plan to shed his mortal form and become a god, through any means necessary. Ellesime sadly concludes that there's nothing left of Jon to save, and that she has to stop him.
  • Bigger on the Inside: The circus tent accessible from Waukeen's Promenade, although it turns out to be merely an illusion that makes it appear that way.
  • Big, Screwed-Up Family: Besides the Bhaalspawn family, the NPCs in the second game who don't hail from one (and whose personal quests aren't related to it) are actually the minority.
  • Black-and-Gray Morality: In the first chapters, Charname is forced to take sides in a gang war between a ruthless criminal organization which tortures and executes its own members and a coterie of bloodthirsty vampires who have slaughtered hundreds of people. It's difficult to roleplay realistically if your character is a Paladin, Ranger, or other do-gooder. So much so that a popular game mod was created to offer the player different paths, as explained under Take a Third Option.
  • Body Horror: The "Tortured Ones" in Irenicus' dungeon and the Skin Dancers in Trademeet.
  • Boss in Mook's Clothing: Elder Orbs and The Unseeing Eye are just slightly larger than your regular beholder.
  • Breakout Character: Every NPC who made it from the first game into the second qualifies to some degree, but Imoen may be the most triumphant example. But apparently, there was someone who wanted Coran in the second game, bothered the developers quite a bit about it, and was rather rude about it to boot. The devs acknowledged her request and then named a character after her user name...which was Lanfear.
  • Break the Cutie: Imoen gets put through ridiculous amounts of this, but is shown to recover in the end. Viconia's backstory also has a lot of this. Also, that wraith who impersonates Gorion will break down your lover, especially Aerie.
  • Broken Bridge: There is a bridge in an underground area in the Unseeing Eye quest that cannot be crossed until three questions are answered correctly. The bridge spans an otherwise impassable underground rift.
  • …But He Sounds Handsome: Edwin pulls this when confronted by another wizard who is hunting him.
    Edwin: Er...I am no Edwin, as you claim. I know him not. He sounds like a worthy mage of distinction, and I am probably weaker having not made his acquaintance.
  • But Thou Must!: At the start of chapter 1, Gaelan will offer you the help of his group, the Shadow Thieves, for a very high price indeed, which he justifies as reaching the Big Bad will be very risky and troublesome. You cannot refuse his help and go figure on your own what to do. You cannot even refuse to follow him to his home and listen his proposal (even if you pretend to be someone else, you will be forcefully-railroaded there in an immediate change of scene).
  • Can't Argue with Elves: Oh yes you can. And if you don't, Valygar will. And if he doesn't... well, let's just say the elves deserve to be argued with this time around. Most of them also agree that yes, they screwed up mightily.
  • Casanova Wannabe: Salvanas the elf. His attempts to hit on your female party members (including a female Charname and a gender-bent Edwin) don't end well.
  • Cat Fight: Can actually happen between Aerie, Jaheira and/or Viconia, if Charname happens to be an attractive Human or Half-Elf. You'd have nobody to blame but your own hormones.
  • Character Development: The developers incorporated lots of eastern RPG-style character-based sidequests to develop the personalities and backstories of the various sidekicks, as compared to the previous game.
  • Circus of Fear: An early quest has the party explore a circus tent that, when entered, is much Bigger on the Inside and filled with monstrous creatures. It turns out to be an illusion; once the illusionist is killed, it reverts back to normal.
  • The City Narrows: The Slums district in Athkatla.
  • City of Adventure: Athkatla.
  • Combat by Champion: The fight with Faldorn, one of the arena types in Ust Natha.
  • Convection, Schmonvection: The Temple Ruins dungeon features pits of red-hot magma. Characters can walk within six inches of them without being affected; they'll only take damage if they actually step on the lava.
  • Continue Your Mission, Dammit!: During the second time you rest after escaping the Underdark, a vision appears and shows Irenicus; she also warns you that you're slowly dying without your soul. Of course, you don't have to listen.
  • Cool Versus Awesome: The Shadow Thieves vs. Bodhi's Vampire Guild.
  • Critical Psychoanalysis Failure: Irenicus takes over Spellhold, an asylum which is supposed to specialize in holding powerful wizards.
  • Cutting Off the Branches: Done to an extreme. The game dialogue and set-up tells you exactly who you traveled with — Khalid, Jaheira, Minsc, Dynaheir and Imoen — and tells you exactly how you behaved — heroically. Needless to say, rationalizing what you are shown and told in the intro level was very difficult if you were any Character Alignment besides some flavour of good and even harder if you didn't actually bring any of them along. This was remedied (fourteen years later!) by the Baldur's Gate: Siege of Dragonspear DLC, which explains how PC ends up with those people in their party, although it still involves a fair amount of Rail Roading. But later, Baldur's Gate III basically confirmed that the canon party was always there, and the protagonist was heroic.
  • Cutscene Incompetence: If you romanced someone, near the end of the game they'll be automatically kidnapped by Bodhi's vampire minions to try luring you into a trap. Jaheira is a Fighter-Druid Action Girl who can more than hold her own in hand-to-hand combat as well as commanding powerful nature magic, and she's the romantic interest with the least anti-vampire focused power set. The other three, Aerie, Vicona, and Anomen, are all clerics who have a power that gives them an "Instant Death" Radius effect against undead as well as having numerous spells that are specifically anti-undead. Averted by the Enhanced Edition love interests, who will all use their class abilities to No-Sell the kidnapping attempt.
  • Darker and Edgier: BG1's themes weren't nearly as grim as some of the elements of BG2.
  • Deconstruction: Of 2nd edition era race/class restrictions. Potential halfing companion Mazzy longs to be a paladin in service to Arvoreen, the halfing god of war and justice, but is held back by the fact that only humans are allowed to be paladins. She clearly chafes under this burden, and the game goes to admirable lengths to point out how racist this is, from Anomen treating Mazzy like dirt for her aspirations to Nalia pointing out how Keldorn's paladin order is elitist for only accepting humans within its ranks. References are occasionally made to a potential future version of the world that will relax such restrictions, which did in fact happen in D&D 3rd edition.
  • Demoted to Extra: Happens to a number of playable characters from Baldur's Gate who don't have bridges dropped on them between games. Looking at the realm map, the second game is placed over 200 miles away, which means that someone around level 7 (your starting place in the second game) would take several in-game months to get to there without high-level magical help, which would break their bank as a single NPC. of course, you get teleport-kidnapped, saving a lot of time.
  • Disc-One Final Dungeon: Spellhold, a prison for insane magic-users.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: In Athkatla, any mages caught casting any form of magic are imprisoned and horrifically tortured for the rest of their lives. Or simply murdered, as in the case with the player character (unless you manage to just keep on killing Cowled Wizards until they give up).
  • Door to Before: The exit from the Underdark conveniently drops the party off back at the mainland.
  • Downer Ending
    • The quest for the de'Arnise Keep can be this if you can't take it over as your stronghold. Sure, the trolls are gone and whatever they were planning to do has been stopped. But a lot of innocents died, along with Nalia's father, and Nalia is betrothed against her will to a slimy noble who is everything she stands against, and who will ruin her life and everything she's tried to accomplish, as well as take her home and fortune. You have the option of taking her with you, but besides the fact that she's a sub-optimal character (and is almost identical in role to Imoen, who has larger plot relevance), she's giving up her entire life to become a homeless vagabond. Averted in her ending in Throne of Baal, where she returns to her home as a powerful wizard, kicks the tar out of the nobles who destroyed her family, and becomes an influential member of the Cowled Wizards who successfully pushes serious reforms on the group to eliminate its corruption.
    • Jan Jansen's personal quest. After you've saved the day, his love interest still goes back to her abusive, controlling husband because "he's changed, for real this time." In his ending in Throne of Baal, though, he goes back to save her and her daughter and take them away from the guy finally.
  • The Dragon: Bodhi for Irenicus.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: Several party members from the first game turn up dead in a rather anti-climatic fashion. Inverted when, due to the open nature of the games, several characters who should (If you got them killed) be dead after the first game can still show up for a cameo in the second. The PC can actually ask them 'Didn't you die?' This is in fact perfectly reasonable in a D&D world.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: Justified at the beginning of the game, as the citizens of Amn have no reason to care about what happens in the north. Played straight after that.
  • Dramatic Irony: Jon Irencius' quest to become a god is something that would never have worked because the Seldarine would never accept him even if he ascended. The avatar of Rillifane says as much. However, he does have a divine spark of a Bhaalspawn in him and if he'd killed the others then he would have ascended to become a god anyway.
  • Dungeon Bypass
    • The Underwater City can be skipped entirely by choosing to leave Brynnlaw via a portal instead of a ship. Doing this will cause the player to miss out on one of the best cloaks in the game, though.
    • Most of the Underdark's quests can be skipped simply by... heading out the exit. Adalon even mentions this if the questline is completed. But this is not the recommended course, since the next set of challenges can be overwhelming without the levels and gear the Underdark would provide to you.
  • Dysfunction Junction: Nearly all recruitable party members (and all four original love interests) have some kind of issue or trauma. And the ones who don't aren't always on even terms with reality. Depending upon whom you take along, the child of a dead murder god can easily be the most sane and stable member of the party.
  • Elemental Embodiment: They are sometimes encountered as enemies. They are also some of the best minions you can summon with spells.
  • Empty Room Psych: Small Teeth Pass is particularly non-notable.
  • Enemy Mine: The Order of the Radiant Heart and the Shadow Thieves would generally by on the opposite sides of any conflict but both agree that Bodhi and her vampires have got to go and are therefore willing to team up with the PC and each other to destroy her.
  • Epic Flail: The Flail of Ages on its own makes having a character with proficiency in flails worthwhile.
  • Even Evil Has Standards:
    • Korgan is an Ax-Crazy murdering bastard, but he refuses to harm children.
    • This is also the reason why Viconia became a outcast. She refused to sacrifice an infant for a rite of passage.
    • During Nalia's second personal quest, you meet Barg a pirate who proudly boasts about how he and his crew smuggle all kinds of illegal items into Athkatla under the noses of its authorities for their employer, Isaea Roenall; however, he admits that they can't stomach slavery so Isaea employs a slave-trader separately.
    • Charname can be this if Evil-aligned, such as telling Imoen that they're interested in the power Irenicus was trying to unlock within them, but they won't let him harm her any further.
    • Subverted in the battle between the Shadow Thieves and Bodhi's vampires. The Shadow Thieves are the more moral of the two in action but only because random murders and abductions and similar are bad for business and the Shadow Thieves are looking to make a consistent profit. While individual Shadow Thieves may or may not have scruples that's not the reason the two are clashing.
  • Every Man Has His Price: Implied to be Athkatla's hat — there's a reason it's called the "City of Coin".
    • The mercenary mages that an old enemy of Jaheira's hires to put her under a curse (one with "extra suffering" per his request) can be convinced to abandon their employer, a former slaver, if you offer to pay them more money when you track them down – an offer they'll be more than happy to accept. Pay extra and they will even backstab him the moment he tries to summon them to his aid. This adds an extra layer of defeat for the slaver, since he spent his last savings on this revenge scheme while the few thousand gold you pay to turn his own mercs against him might be chicken feed to you at this point.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Mostly. Irenicus in particular.
  • Evil Is Easy: While there are only three evil characters in the original version, all of them happened to be highly optimized - the same applies to the additional evil characters.
    • Korgan is the best warrior in the main game (without addon or expanded edition) with optimal physical stats (STR 18/77, DEX 15, CON 19) and 5 skill points in axes.
    • Edwyn is the best mage with high CON, maximal INT and lots of additional spells due to being a specialist (in the optimal spell school no less) and a unique item.
    • While Viconia can't hold a candle to Anomen when it comes to melee (who has high STR, CON and fighter levels), her WIS 18 makes her a superior caster. Her DEX 19 isn't too shabby either.
    • Sarevok is hands-down the best companion in the game stat-wise.
    • Dorn-il-Khan is the strongest companion character. His relatively low CON is a bummer, though.
    • Hexxas is the best thief; at least as long as she's out of the sunlight.
  • Evil Is Visceral: The area where the player finds the Unseeing Eye is this.
  • Evil Mentor: Dermin.
  • Evil Sounds Deep: Averted with Irenicus, who speaks in a normal register, as well as his Dragon Bodhi.
  • Evil Versus Evil:
    • A quest involves a conflict between a cabal of vampires and a thieves guild, who are at best A Lighter Shade of Black.
    • The group trying to kill Viconia are fanatical worshippers of Beshaba, the invoked Chaotic Evil goddess of bad luck.
    • If playing as a Priest of Talos, you will get the same quest to investigate and stop the Cult of the Unseeing Eye in the Temple District. No one is allowed to take away their followers.
    • In the Underdark the various Always Chaotic Evil races living there, including the drow, the mind flayers, the kuo-toa and the beholders are in conflict with each other. Part of the questline to regain Adalon's eggs involves retrieving the blood (or an eyestalk) of a prominent member of one of those races for use as a component to summon a demon lord.
  • Expecting Someone Taller: Renal Bloodscalp reacts this way to the player character. Mazzy Fentan, being a halfling fighter, also seems to be on the receiving end of this trope a lot, a fact that annoys her to no end.
  • Extranormal Prison: Spellhold, a prison designed specifically to hold rogue mages.
  • Eye Scream: The Cult of the Unseeing Eye, membership in which requires Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
  • Fairy Battle: Even though Drizzt is not hostile unless Charname provokes him, encountering him is still accompanied by the narrator saying the party has been ambushed.
  • False Innocence Trick:
    • The first time is while escaping from Irenicus' dungeon. You run across an imprisoned man in a rather luxurious cell, with a large number of booby-trapped treasure chests to boot. If you let him out, he shortly afterwards reveals he's a doppelganger and attacks, with rather predictable results. If you're instead suspicious, he'll ask if you'd be more willing to help a little wee child and shapeshifts into a boy.
    • The second time is about halfway through the game, when Yoshimo, who had (potentially) joined you near the start, reveals himself as a Sixth Ranger Traitor for Irenicus, due to a geas placed on him. The next time you meet him after that, there is no way around killing him off for real, which he desperately wants anyway.
  • False Prophet: Gaal is the High Priest of the Cult of the Unseeing Eye who preach that all other gods but his own are false and have swayed many to his cause. It turns out that his "god" is a Beholder—a powerful entity, but hardly a god, even in this setting.
  • Fantastic Drug: Guril berries, which the player briefly gets a hold of during a sidequest, are strongly implied to be Fantastic Viagra.
  • Final Boss, New Dimension: The final fight occurs on a different plane.
  • Final Boss Preview: Jon Irenicus manages to effortlessly capture the party twice, killing some of them in the process, before you even get the chance to fight him.
  • First Town: The starting town of Athkala is also one of the most active areas for quests and encounters.
  • Flaming Sword: Several weapons in BG2 deal fire damage, including "Stonefire", "Blade of Searing" and "Sword of Flame", and "Angurvadal". Most are useful for killing trolls.
  • Flat-Earth Atheist: The Cult of the Unseeing Eye claims that all gods (except theirs) don't exist despite living in a world with very active deities. Their argument that clerics' magic is no different than wizards is already pretty weak, given that divine magic works quite differently to arcane magic, but the whole idea really falls apart given that the Time of Troubles, when gods literally walked the Earth, is within the living memory of many humans.
  • Foreshadowing: A few of the game's biggest twists are seeded in Irenicus' dungeon.
    • Of your companions who survive Irenicus' ministrations, Imoen is particularly scarred by the ideal, having been subjected to torturous experiments with a focus on death. She, like you, is a child of Bhaal, and Irenicus was trying to awaken her to her nature.
    • Among Irenicus' servants is a vampire; he's identified as her master. Indeed, he's in league with the local vampire guild terrorising Athkatla, whose leader — his sister and chief lieutenant — deceives and betrays you to him if you side with her in the guild war.
    • An errant clone of an unspecified woman rebels against her identity and goes mad, forcing you to kill her. She is an imperfect replica of the Big Bad's former lover, Queen Ellesime, and a lavish bedroom is set aside for its use.
    • The three dryads infer that Irenicus is barren inside, and that he cannot get any satisfaction from them or his clones because he's missing a fundamental piece of himself. What he's missing is his soul, and the woman he cloned is the person who took it.
    • Shortly before leaving, you encounter a shadow thief who attacks you on sight. You can offer to join forces with him, but he'll decline, claiming that he'd be a fool to trust anyone he meets in the Big Bad's evil lair. This is rather prophetic if you accepted Yoshimo into your party not long before.
  • Forest Ranger: A Ranger character can accept a position as an actual forest ranger for a town in a wooded area to replace the one that got killed by Shade Wolves in the Umar Hills.
  • The "Fun" in "Funeral":
    • You can run into a funeral gone horribly wrong in the Athkatla Graveyard District, which is a Black Comedy version. Nevin gave his Uncle Lester such a cheap funeral that Lester rose from his casket as a zombie out of the sheer indignity of it, killed the rest of the funeral goers, and is coming after Nevin when you arrive. When Lester gives Nevin the riot act, Nevin points out that he did it mainly because Lester frittered away all of his own money on a Calimshite whore and left Nevin nothing. Unless you intervene, Lester will kill Nevin and then shamble off to find his former mistress because there's "always time for one last quickie." If you do intervene, Nevin will call Lester out as a bastard and complain about having to rebury his now-mangled corpse.
    • There are also several light-hearted moments at the funeral for Nalia's Father, such as a dwarf named Bonchy talking about his plans to overthrow the nobility in a too-loud voice, just to make the nobles nervous. This makes Nalia smile, to which Bonchy replies that his work is done for a ten-day.
  • Game-Breaking Bug: Because of the way the game tracks and monitors global event counters, game performance begins to break down near the end of Baldur's Gate II or near the beginning of Throne of Bhaal. So many resources are devoted to constantly keeping track of event counters, even ones that have no further use, that the game suffers from crippling lag, with character movement stuttering and combat becoming nearly unplayable even on modern systems. What's worse, the original games have no multi-core CPU support and are resource intensive, meaning that in most cases a single core is nearly maxed out on performance while the others are unaffected. The only known fix is to modify the save game file itself with a few hundred "placeholder" event counters. For whatever reason, the lag is an issue of the save file reaching a certain percentage of event counters out of a particular number; by inserting placeholder counters, the file can be made to reach that number, causing it to "roll over" to a new larger number, improving performance. The problem is also fixed with the popular Throne of Bhaal Extender (TobEx) mod, a kind of standalone pre-loading program that modifies the game engine as the game is being played in order to correct this and numerous other mechanical issues.
  • Game Mod: Lots. Even though this game is over a decade and a half old, the modding community has remained active, undertaking and completing extremely ambitious projects. One of the more popular mods is "Unfinished Business", which restores a lot of cut content. There is even a set of utilities, the BiG World Project, that allows players to choose from hundreds of mods, install them, solve compatibility issues, and debug the whole setup.
    • Aside of the big ones mentioned above, there are also many smaller mods to bring back Baldur's Gate old, missing NPC with their own banters and interjections during the events of the second game and some having their own quests, such as Kivan (and you can even bring back his dead lover Deherianna too!), Ajantis, Coran, Branwen, Alora, Yeslick, Xan, Tiax. And in lieu of Siege of Dragonspear, there's also a mod to bring Skie Back from the Dead and somewhat restoring your ruined reputation in Baldur's Gate. And before that one, there's also a mod to prevent Yoshimo's betrayal or even still bring him back for Throne of Bhaal, albeit with a dose of Came Back Wrong.
    • There's also a notable mod that lets other default NPC (like, Minsc, Jaheira, Aerie, Anomen, etc) to acquire and manage the stronghold that your character normally couldn't get, so you could go through all the Stronghold quests in one play through, although there are some limitations (such as Nalia not wanting to ask Korgan to inherit her home due to his attitude)
    • For avid roleplayers, there is a mod that allows you to not side with either the Shadow Thieves or Bodhi to head to Spellhold, but instead hire a stranger named Maleficus or enlist the help of a Lathander Priest/Paladin to tackle both the Shadow Thieves and Bodhi at once. Not only it's good for Paladin roleplayers, it also lets you tackle both climax quests at once.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation:
    • Imoen always manages to get herself arrested by casting spells illegally upon exiting Irenicus' dungeon, even if she's got none left memorized when you escape. Conversely, enemies using spells are exempt, such as the Gith trying to retrieve the Silver Blade when you return to Athkatla.
    • Similarly, Yoshimo can't be resurrected despite the fact that in D&D it is possible to bring a dead character back from almost ANYTHING, up to and including the total destruction of their physical body (however, it's implied that the character in question doesn't want to - which prevents all resurrection - as he specifically asks you to take his heart instead of resurrecting him). His questline was cut short due to time constraints which were compounded by fan pressure to add Imoen back as a playable character after her Cameo. He actually has dialogue for scenes it's impossible for him to legitimately be present at, and even has 2 conversations with an NPC who isn't available until ToB, concerning a mutual acquaintance, if he's cheated into the party and certain actions are taken.
    • Aerie is always naive, sensitive and borderline cowardly regardless of her actual (and quite impressive) power level.
    • Unless you're idling around to an extreme degree, the timespan from BG1 to BG2:ToB takes about two years. Which means that you (and your entire group) climbed from level 1 to epic levels within that time.
    • The Underdark is unrealistically crowded with three highly territorial and vicious races competing over maybe 2-3 square miles.
    • A cleric of invoked Chaotic Neutral alignment can take the cleric kit "Priest of Helm". According to the rules a chaotic priest of Helm wouldn't be allowed since the god Helm is firmly opposed to chaos.
  • Geas: Yoshimo is under a geas to betray you at a certain point of the plot.
  • Gender Bender: A Wild Mage surge can cause this to happen to either party members or enemies.
  • Get on the Boat: How the player gets to Spellhold.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere:
    • The battle against the Enclave of the Twisted Rune, which was part of a subquest that was only partially implemented in the game's initial release, leaving players wondering what a group of ultra-powerful spellcasters were doing hanging out in the basement of a shipping warehouse in the Bridge District. Fan-made mods filled in the blanks, making this battle a bit less of a Big-Lipped Alligator Moment.
    • The Demi-Lich hanging out in Watcher's Keep. No build-up or opening dialogue or anything; you just walk into a room, and there's an already-hostile Demi-Lich, who will then probably proceed to immediately Imprison your main character.
  • Glass Cannon: The "Kensai" fighter kit: incapable of wearing any armor, but supremely skilled in melee weapons.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: What put a few of the inmates in Spellhold. Imoen flirts with it as well.
  • Gondor Calls for Aid: Attacking Bodhi's guild calls for some assistance. You can convince the Shadow Thieves, the Order of the Radiant Heart and even Drizzt himself to join you in the battle.
  • Good Is Not Soft: If Charname is Good-aligned (and actually walks the talk), s/he is this by necessity. Meanwhile, the majority of your Good-aligned party members qualify for this trope: by and large they are genuinely kind, altruistic people who are nevertheless very capable of dishing out asskicking when necessary.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: Scarring is very common in the portraits regardless of alignment.
  • Guilt-Based Gaming: Trying to quit with Alt-F4 will remind you that "Boo will miss you".
  • Hair Memento: An old enemy of Jaheira carries a lock of her hair, though in this case, it's because it's a part of the Sympathetic Magic he uses to curse her during her personal quest and the spell would fail without it. The lock is lootable as an item after killing him, meaning the trope can be invoked by the Player Character if you choose to hang on to it for the rest of the game (doubly so if you also choose to court Jaheira).
  • Have You Seen My God?: At the time the game takes place in-universe the goddess of trade, Waukeen (very popular in mercantile Amn) has been missing since The Time of Troubles with her friend the luck goddess Tymora handling her position for the moment. Naturally her clergy encountered in game are rather distressed about this.
  • Hidden Elf Village: Suldanesselar, which is an entire Hidden Elf Capital City.
  • Historical Domain Character: The deputy of Sir Anarg the Fallen Paladin is one Reynald de Chatillon, the notoriously violent and otherwise unpleasant Crusader.
  • Honest John's Dealership: The people at the Adventurer's Mart in BG2 reek of this, but will never actually screw the player over.
  • How Do I Shot Web?: A creature encountered in Waukeen's Promenade who is looking for the Silver Blade has not quite mastered how to cast the specific spell he wants.
  • Hypocrite: The Cult of the Unseeing Eye view all gods except their own as false, but their "god" is a Beholder. A powerful Beholder, but by no means a god. Somebody will end up in the Wall of the Faithless when you're done with them.
  • If You're So Evil, Eat This Kitten!: The player has to do this at points in the Shadow Thieves quest line, particularly while rooting out Mae'Var. However, since the Shadow Thieves are the gray half of Athkala's Black-and-Gray Morality, it's not too bad. It's played a little more straight in some other quests, though.
  • I Have Your Wife: Bodhi pulls this by abducting your lover and turning him/her into a vampire when you enter the graveyard district to assault her guild in Baldur's Gate II.
    • The Extended Edition characters, who can all be romanced in some capacity, are having none of her shit. Neera tries to pull a He Is Not My Boyfriend before Wild Surging away temporarily, Dorn shrugs off the attack with his class immunities or is protected by his patron, Rasaad unleashes his undead-destroying powers and Hexxat demonstrates she already is a vampire.
  • I'm Cold... So Cold...: "I feel so cold" are Aerie's last words before her hit points drop to zero.
  • Improbable Power Discrepancy: The Amnish guards are amazingly even more powerful than the Baldur's Gate guards in the previous game, so much so that if the power discrepancy were "real" instead of merely game mechanics (to compensate for higher-level player characters), the Amnish could simply march their supermen up to Baldur's Gate and conquer the area within days. And then there's the Tethyrian and Calishite legions and mercenaries in Throne of Bhaal, whose rank-and-file footmen carry + 2 magical weapons.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: From time to time you'll get one, including a tale told to the party near mid-game. It relates the story of a throne carved from stone which was hidden in the upper level of a grass hut. However, the floor of the hut wasn't strong enough to support the throne and it collapsed, sending the throne to the ground and ruining the hut. It's Minsc who is first to grasp the moral of the story:
    Minsc: People shouldn't stow thrones in grass houses!
  • Insane Troll Logic: We get some of this logic coming from an actual insane troll. Here's the conversation if you try to keep a dialogue going as long as possible instead of attacking him right after he says:
    Troll Cook: Hello there foodthing. You are just in time. Please just jump onto the grill over there.
    Protagonist: Pardon me?
    Troll Cook: The grill. That big metal thing. Jump on. Be careful, it's hot!
    Protagonist: You speak well for a troll.
    Troll Cook: My mother tried hard to give me good learning. She sent me to live with these hobgoblins here. They smart. Trained me how to cook real good.
    Protagonist: Do you like these orcs?
    Troll Cook: They smell bad, but they're okay. They can be mean sometimes. Chief DigDag sometimes cuts my fingers off and throws them onto the grill. Says they taste like sausages.
    Protagonist: Doesn't that hurt?
    Troll Cook: Yep. But I'm a troll. Fingers cut off. Fingers grow back. Now quit talking and start broiling! Chief DigDag doesn't like me talking to the food.
    Protagonist: I'm not letting you cook me, you crazy troll!
    Troll Cook: Uncle Cajum, he was crazy. Me, I'm not crazy. I'm a cook. Now get on the grill!
    Protagonist: Why would I want to be on the grill?
    Troll Cook: Geez. It's impossible to get good help nowadays. If you're not on the grill, how am I going to cook you?
    Protagonist: I don't want to be cooked.
    Troll Cook: If you didn't want to be cooked, then why did you apply for the job? I think you'll all make a tasty snack! Boys! Get 'em!
  • Ironic Nursery Tune: "You can't hide, war will find. You can't hide, war will find! YOU CAN'T HIDE! WAR WILL FIND!"
  • Is There An Adventurer In The House?: How Raelis Shai recruits you after a disastrous play in the basement of the Five Flagons Inn.
  • Item Crafting: Cromwell will create items for you if you bring the required components/pieces and enough money.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy:
    • Haer'Dalis will do this with a male if Aerie is being romanced.
    • The Turnabout mod allows a PC romancing Jaheira to choose this by resurrecting Khalid.
  • I Warned You: The game specifically tells you not to specialize in katanas, since there aren't many in the game. If you do specialize, everything will be great until you reach the halfway point of the game, and then the only katanas available will be incapable of hurting the enemy, and you'll be stuck using weapons you aren't proficient in. The only way to get the best katana is the game is to rob an upscale house which turns out to be a mob safehouse. It's also very unlikely you will have been able to do this before you enter the Underdark, which is when the katana specialization really begins to hurt.
  • Jerkass: As bad as the first game is, the second is even worse when it comes to the upper classes, most of them are horribly snobbish and standoffish. Nalia's Aunt Delcia is probably the worst example. In addition to the usual NPCs that like to start fights for no reason, there are also random NPCs that will insult you or a member of your party for being a certain race. The entire town of Trademeet is suspicious of you because you're a stranger and treats you accordingly.
  • Jerkass Genie: You meet your fair share of friendly djinni throughout your adventures, but the ones that fulfill your Limited Wish and Wish spells are jerks. If you Limited Wish for a lot of experience, the djinn spawns several very strong enemies for you to fight (if you kill them, you'll get a lot of experience!), and if you ask for an adventure like none you've ever had, the djinn sends you on a long, annoying fetch quest that ends with you retrieving a feces-covered gong. Meanwhile, when you cast the full Wish spell, you have to negotiate with the djinn, and if your Wisdom score is low, the djinn will wreak havoc on you.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Nalia's incorrigible aunt does make a fair point when she refuses to give you an additional reward for saving the family home, claiming that you've no doubt already robbed the place up and down while you were in there. No matter how nobly you play CHARNAME, there's probably more than a little truth to this.
  • Just Toying with Them
    • Bodhi likes to do this, although she has some difficulty pulling it off in practice against the Player Character.
    • Firkraag in the Windspear Hills sideplot also messes with the player character and is completely unconcerned about their possible retribution, even after they've destroyed all his minions, which he doesn't particularly mind either.
  • Kangaroo Court: Your character is subjected to one of these by an ambitious Harper. Granted, he may be right about you if you are playing an evil character, but that isn't why he is accusing you. No matter how you answer his questions, he will find a way to twist them and make you seem like a dangerous monster not unlike an illithid or beholder that needs to be sealed away forever. Jaheira calls him out on this and declares that he cares more about his own advancement than about actually protecting the balance. At least you have the option of being a Deadpan Snarker throughout the whole interrogation.
  • Karma Houdini:
    • Saemon Havarian: Every time you meet him, prepare to be screwed over. Don't try to avoid it, because you can't. Don't try to get revenge, because you won't. He gets away every time. Even if you kill him in SoA, he shows back up in ToB, where he generally escapes justice as well.note 
    • Jarlaxle, who fools the player into stealing a Matron Mother's gems for him and then gracefully bows out after admitting as much. He even lampshades your inability to exact retribution upon him.
    • In order to have Anomen pass his Knighthood test if you're romancing him, you have to convince him that he should let his sister's death go unavenged even though that means letting the killer get away with it. No matter how you play it, Anomen's quest becomes a "Shaggy Dog" Story. If he refuses to kill Saerk the first time, Saerk turns out to be the guy who kills his sister, and the PC must convince Anomen to let that killer go free in order to keep him in the party. The whole event is treated like a classic If You Kill Him, You Will Be Just Like Him! plot, but this is a game where even good characters will have to slaughter dozens of people every time you play in order to advance the story, making it a huge Broken Aesop. To cap it off, if Anomen does kill Saerk the first time, it's later revealed that two random mooks killed his sister, and that Anomen murdered an apparently innocent man and failed his lifelong dreams for no apparent reason at all. Although, given that Saerk was said to have hired the men who killed her rather than doing the deed himself it's likely that he was still guilty, Anomen's just too unlucky to find out that he killed the right man.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: Their base stats are significantly better than those of other one-handed weapons in the game, even competing with two-handed weapons in terms of damage output - a Kensai dual wielding katanas is the game's single best melee damage dealer. In an unmodded game, this is balanced somewhat by the fact there is a far better selection of magical weapons for most other one-handed weapon types (although the magical katana known as the Celestial Fury is one of the best weapons prior to Throne of Bhaal), but the underlying assumption is still present.
  • Knight Templar:
    • Several of the Harpers qualify.
    • Mazzy (the halfling not-quite-paladin) further subverts the Lawful Stupid half, being just as righteous as Keldorn and arguably more level-headed and fair.
    • Speaking of Keldorn, don't place him in the same party with Viconia. The result is not pretty.
  • Ladykiller in Love: Coran, from the first game, has wound up this way to Safana when you encounter them late in the game.
  • Language of Magic: Unlike in the first game, the language not unidentifiable - it's Latin.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: In the cutscene that plays as you go to rescue Imoen a couple of Cowled Wizards are planning to engage in I Have You Now, My Pretty with the poor girl. Seconds later Irenicus bursts into the room and blows them into meaty chunks. Not that his plans for her are particularly pleasant either.
  • Lava Pit: There are several in the Temple Ruins dungeon. They do very little damage however, and even then only if you actually stand in them.
  • Lawful Stupid: The Order of the Radiant Heart, a league of paladins dedicated to Torm, Tyr, Helm, and other deities, plays with this trope. By and large they tend to avert this, especially some who come off as Reasonable Authority Figures. They also reconcile their code of honor with their Wretched Hive surroundings by protecting civilians and refusing to get caught up in the city's politics.
    • If Charname themselves is a paladin of the Order, s/he has to avert this trope in order to successfully complete that series of stronghold quests (and get a sweet set of full plate armor). Two of the quests are classic To Be Lawful or Good setups, forcing Charname to resolve a tricky situation with a decision. The solution to both is the same: Make sure you get all the information needed to make a good choice, and don't just do what authority figures tell you.
  • Least Rhymable Word: Jan asks Haer'Dalis to come up with rhymes for some of these in a banter.
    Jan: What's a good rhyme for 'bucket'?
    Haer'Dalis: One does spring readily to mind...
  • Leitmotif: Party members with a Romance Sidequest have their own songs that play during romance talks. Although there are there are four potential love interests, there are actually only three of these songs as Aerie's and Jaheira's are two halves of the same song.
  • Less Embarrassing Term: The Player is lucky enough to meet up with Drizz't (again), Wulfgar and their heroic friends. When you encounter them, they are searching the undergrowth for a misplaced magical hammer that is absolutely not "pink" — it's "light red"!
  • A Lighter Shade of Black: In order to get into Spellhold, you need to buy the support of either the Shadow Thieves of Amn, or Bodhi's Guild of vampires, both of whom are locked in a war for control of the criminal underworld of Athkatla. Both are evil organizations, but the former are much less so as they consist of mortals who can at least be friendly with standards and noble qualities. It certainly doesn't help that the vampires are aligned with Irenicus and are intentionally leading you into a trap. Being the morally superior option is actually rather surprising even to the Shadow Thieves leader.
  • Literal Genie: In Baldur's Gate II; "Limited Wish" spell, and indeed the "Wish" spell.
  • Living Shadow: Shadows are a rather common foe (with very annoying Life Drain attacks) but the Shade Lord of the Umar Hills dungeon takes to Exaggerated Trope levels with an army of Shadows and Shadow Fiends with a Shadow Dragon for good measure. The guy stays on brand.
  • Loophole Abuse: In the Sahuagin city a Plot Coupon is contained in a chest guarded by a Spectator Beholderkin, bound to guard the chest for ninety nine years, with forty still on the clock when the player arrives. Thankfully Spectators are the only Beholderkin that tend to be reasonable and its not enthused by the task so when a player character with sufficient wisdom (or Jan or Haer'Dalis) point out that its instructions to stop anyone else touching the chest in no way precludes the Spectator from opening the chest itself and the PC from grabbing what's inside without ever touching the chest it cheerfully obliges.
  • Lord British Postulate: Several plot-critical characters (such as Elthan and Aran in the Shadow Thief path) are unkillable, and furthermore spawn (equally unkillable) assassins that One-Hit-Kill you if you make them hostile. It's possible to kill some of them with a combination of Time Stop and Shapeshift: Illithid Form, as they have a weakness towards ability drain.
  • Love Triangle:
    • If you've got a male PC of the right race and two or more of Aerie, Jaheira, and Viconia in the party. With all three, plus Haer'Dalis, it turns into a full-fledged Love Dodecahedron.
    • A love triangle between Haer'Dalis, Aerie, and a female PC was planned for, but not fully programmed in time for the game's release.
    • The Enhanced Edition adds Neera and Dorn to the above mess, as well as making it possible for female PCs to have a love triangle between Rasaad and Anomen or Dorn and Hexxat.
  • Loyalty Mission: Nearly every companion in eventually approaches you for help with something and leaves if you fail to assist them. Jaheira has troubles with the Harpers, Anomen receives news that his sister is murdered, etc. Some companions, like Nalia and Valygar, can only be recruited after you complete their respective missions.
  • Malevolent Architecture: In the Drow city this is joined with Alien Geometries.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Jarlaxle shows up in the Underdark Ark to use you in a elaborate get-rich scheme.
  • Mayfly–December Romance: In addition to possibly applying to the player's romance in Shadows of Amn note , it's also the plot of the play you oversee in the Bard questline. The play is about an immortal sorcerer who meets a woman, and the two of them fall in love despite the sorcerer trying not to become attached to her. Once that happens, the sorcerer thinks of how he will eventually lose her and dreads the day when that will happen. The ending? When the sorcerer's apprentice asks where the woman, Karenina, has gone, the sorcerer tells him that she wished to join him in eternal life, but that he knew how painful eternal life was and didn't want to inflict that kind of pain on her, even if it was her wish. Still, he couldn't bear to part with her, and so...he turned her to stone. "Now go, my pupil...leave me with my bride. I shall touch her cold and unrelenting cheek once more...tonight a part of me has died inside."
  • Meaningful Name
    • Ribald Barterman is a merchant.
    • Jan Jansen is a stock character in Dutch jokes. (The name simply means something akin to "John Johnson", by the way.)
  • The Minion Master: The beastmaster and Totemic Druid kits, and to some extent all mages, druids, and clerics. Summoned minions are quite powerful in Baldur's Gate 1 and 2, especially if you pick the right ones. Summoned Fire Elementals are particularly powerful, but even a group of properly buffed skeletons can take out a huge number of encounters.
  • Mirror Match
    • One of these occurs in the Pocket Plane.
    • The first fight with Irenicus is also an example, though a particularly odd one, as he'll begin battle by casting 'Clone' a spell that creates clones of the player's party. Only, they won't have any equipment at all, so they don't tend to last very long.
    • Another occurs in Chapter 6 of the second game, being a random battle that takes place whilst travelling between areas of Athkatla. No information is given on who they are or why they're doing it, and since they lack the abilities of the party, it's not a long battle.
  • Mistaken for Exhibit: In the quest to gain the services of Sir Sarles for a church, you have the option of trying to placate him with a lump of impure alloy of the Unobtainium he demands to work with. Sarles will discard the lump, but if you bring it back to the temple the chief priest will think the lump is modern art made by some other artist and accept it.
  • Monty Haul: Powerful magical items are fairly common and there's enough full plate armor and elven chain mail to outfit your entire party with it.
  • Most Gamers Are Male: Played with. Originally, there were three potential romances included for male PCs and only one for female PCs (and that with a partner who many players found less than endearing), but the devs intended to have three potential romances for the female PCs as well; time constraints meant they got cut, rather than this trope. The Enhanced Edition goes out of its way to add more romances for females than males (three love interests gained to two).
  • The Münchausen: Jan Jansen. He will often come up with completely ludicrous stories that are only slightly relevant to the topic or danger at hand, not to mention surreal. The only thing to render him speechless is when your party descends to hell.
  • Murder the Hypotenuse: Haer'Dalis will try to do this to you if you romance Aerie with him in your party and your relationship with Aerie isn't yet solid when you get him. If you have solidified your romance with Aerie, he gracefully backs down.
  • Murder, Inc.: The Shadow Thieves seem to be bigger on assassination than actual theft. Also implied to be the case with other thieves' guilds, such as the Night Knives (the ones Maevar is courting as part of his plan to assassinate Renal Bloodscalp).
  • Mutually Exclusive Party Members: Examples from this game include:
  • My Species Doth Protest Too Much: Umar Hills contains a group of peaceful ogres, gnolls and a minotaur who just want to trade with the town, but keep getting chased away because of the peoples' belief that their respective species are Always Chaotic Evil. Some of the townspeople also blame them for the village's problems, even though the creatures were also affected by the problem and were even trying to help. Their leader also mentions that they are Defectors From Decadence fleeing from an empire that forcibly conscripted them.
    • In the EE, Dorn comments on how people are predjudiced against Half-Orcs purely for their appearance. He's definitely evil (especially in BG2), but he also comes off as pretty honest, loyal and an honourable if bloodthirsty warrior, and is completely unbiased in who he romances. He seems annoyed that people assume all Half-Orcs are as bad as he is.
  • Mythology Gag: Those with the collector's edition (or a certain mod) will encounter merchants that carry items that serve as Shout Outs to Icewind Dale and Planescape: Torment.
  • Named Weapons: Any enchanted weapon +1 or higher could have a name.
  • Near-Villain Victory: The only reason why Irenicus plans ended with fiasco was because his sister Bodhi wanted to play a cruel cat and mouse game at the expense of main character.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Quite a few, such as Renal Bloodscalp and Korgan Bloodaxe.
  • Nerf: The kensai, believe it or not. In the tabletop game a kensai has a natural armor bonus which increases as they gain levels, but here they have the initial armor class (which is obtained by subtracting their dexterity from 23) which never improves. This may have been put in to balance out the character, since tabletop kensais can't use magical weapons.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero:
    • Kangaxx congratulates you for yours after you release him.
    • The Suldanessellar elves' form of mercy made Irenicus both incapable of regret and singularly obsessed with revenge.
  • Nintendo Hard: The game is filled with extremely dangerous enemies and bosses, which means you must build your character properly and develop the right strategies to defeat said foes. Several traps in high-level areas have a chance to kill anyone who triggers them on the spot. And the 2nd Edition gameplay is something you need to get used to.
  • No-Sell:
    • At one point, Bodhi kidnaps your love interest to turn them into a vampire... Unless the love interest is an Enhanced Edition NPC, in which case they get away by using their class skills or already being a vampire in Hexxat's case, two of which also fits perfectly here by simply being the character shrugging the attempt off. This has received some criticism, since while it is indeed in-character and reasonable for all of them, it marks them out as different from the original characters and highlights the way the kidnapping went down was out of character for some of the originals (they all use divine magic, but Anomen and Viconia are powerful clerics). It also reduces the villain's effectiveness at being a villain.
    • The class kits for paladins can turn different types of attacks into this. In exchange for a minimal penalty, the PC gets immunity to some commonly status effects, such as Fear, Charm, Hold, Poison, and Level Drain. This is on top of the saving throw bonus paladins normally get.
    • There's an area in hell where you have two branching paths. One is filled with high level Beholders, the other with a wall that bombards you with nearly impossible to roll against save fear spells. If you're playing a Cavalier, you're *immune* to fear so you can just carelessly stroll past the latter corridor and get the MacGuffin.
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: In the Athkatla catacombs there's a senile lich that goes by the name of Nevaziah, who has been hiding there for ages. He seems mostly harmless and in fact inspires quite a bit of pity. That is, until Jerkass Edwin manages to press his Berserk Button and it proceeds to barrage your party with high level spells..
  • Not-So-Safe Harbor: Athkatla's docks are even more dangerous than its slums. The pirate town of Brynnlaw also is an example.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Jan comes across most of the time as a turnip-obsessed, Chaotic Stupid Cloudcuckoolander with a penchant for telling meandering, pointless stories, but if the player undertakes the sidequest to save his former lover, he's revealed to be quite lucid and clever.
  • Old Save Bonus:
    • A Tales of the Sword Coast player can import a higher-level hero than normal into Baldur's Gate II.
    • BG1 gives benefits for actually playing through the game that can't be acquired by someone just starting fresh in Throne of Bhaal. This includes higher stats from BG1, as the original game also has seven items that will permanently raise a particular attribute by one point (and the expansion has one more), so a character imported into the sequel could start with some attributes higher than normally possible for their race without any cheats or exploits.
    • The first game has an item called the Gold Pantaloons that are given to players by a confused noble that thinks the PC is the laundry service. You can't do anything with them, and they look like a total Joke Item. But it turns out that they're one of the few items that are saved when importing a character from the first game. The second game and its expansion each have a pair, the silver and bronze pantaloons respectively. If you collect all three, then the expansion to the second game has an NPC that will forge them into a very strong set of Power Armor, as well as a weapon to go with it.
  • Only the Pure of Heart: In Watcher's Keep, there is a pillar on the third floor that gives, when touched, a warning that only the pure may uncover the secret. Any Lawful Good characters then touching the pillar get a powerful sword, put there by a righteous hero who infused his essence into it. Anyone else gets an Abi Dhalzim's Horrid Wilting thrown at them, this being a powerful spell that can decimate entire parties, especially those of a low level.
  • Optional Character Scene: It's common for party members to interject in conversations. Several mods even add in extra.
  • Overly Long Gag: Slightly shorter example with Neeber, as compared with Noober in the original.
  • Permanently Missable Content:
    • Unless you're playing as a Fighter class (and have access to the De'Arnise Keep for the rest of Amn), if you miss finding the heads for the Flail of Ages, you will not be able to go back in and retrieve them after you liberate the Keep for Nalia. This in turns locks you out of the upgraded Flail in Throne of Bhaal.
    • Every unique item in every other area which you can't reenter past a certain point, as well as some other items. This is especially annoying in case of the pieces of certain artifacts. Didn't pay quite full attention in the very first dungeon, and missed a specific jewel? No Equalizer for you. Missed an item in a hidden area in the Spellhold dungeon? Forget about ever completing the Gesen Bow. Made the mistake of actually giving a snobby artist the alloy he asked for, instead of taking it to the smith to upgrade that Mace of Disruption? You'll never get the upgrade.
    • Several characters will leave the party permanently and will not be recruitable again, if you make certain choices. For example, if you choose to side with Bodhi against the Shadow Thieves, Mazzy and Keldorn will give you a warning, and then follow through on it if you don't listen to them. Worse yet, they'll take everything in their inventories with them.
  • Pirates: They've even got their own island.
  • Point-and-Click Map
  • Police Are Useless: When investigating a string of murders in the Bridge district, if you present evidence to the guards' investigator instead of acting on it yourself, he'll get himself killed.
  • Production Foreshadowing: An overt version. A loading screen tooltip tells the player that Neverwinter Nights will allow them to import their Baldur's Gate character. This planned feature never actually happened though, as the rules changes between D&D second and third editions were too broad to easily allow it.
  • Purely Aesthetic Gender: Save for the romances, dialogue and certain people hitting on you harmlessly. And playing through the Drow city is quite different for player characters of differing genders, as would be in keeping with the Drow's Fantastic Sexism.
  • Railroading: At the end of chapter 1, it doesn't matter what you say, not even if you deny to be the main character: Gaelan will take you to his house and propose his deal, which you cannot refute (see But Thou Must! above) in order to set in motion the money-catching quests for Chapter 2. You also generally have no choice but to pursue the Big Bad thanks to said deal, either to get revenge/answers or to rescue your childhood friend, you can't simply walk away from Amn and go anywhere else forever.
  • Rebellious Princess: Nalia.
  • Replaced with Replica: The player character and company are sent to infiltrate a drow noble house that has stolen the eggs of a silver dragon. The swap occurs thusly: first, you're instructed to swap the real eggs before they can be used in a ritual- they're being given to a demon in exchange for power, and being given the fake eggs causes him to kill the house's Matron Mother in retaliation. Once you've replaced the original eggs, you're given a second option to use a second set of fake eggs that you can give to Phaere, who was going to give them to the demon in exchange for the power he was originally going to give her mother. This causes him to kill her as well. At that point, you have the option to either give the eggs to the demon yourself or return them to the silver dragon.
  • Rescue Introduction:
    • Aerie: Held captive and disguised as an ogre in a circus tent; the party can choose to free her.
    • Cernd: Has been captured by the people of Trademeet, who hold Druids responsible for the ongoing animal attaches.
    • Haer'Dalis: Has been kidnapped and mind controlled by the wizard Mekrath.
    • Viconia (again!): Being pursued by an officer of the Flaming Fist, although it's unclear if he has a valid reason or is just prejudiced because she's a Drow.
    • Mazzy: Was part of a group of adventurers who tried to clear out the Temple Ruins, but the rest of her party was killed and she was imprisoned there.
    • Minsc and Jaheira: Imprisoned with Charname at the beginning of the game; you can choose whether or not to free them or leave them there.
  • Retcon: Quite a few, between the first game and this one. Some of them worked better than others.
  • Revive Kills Zombie: The Empathic Manifestation in the temple of Amaunator. As an embodiment of suffering, it can only be killed by showing it love — i.e., healing it.
  • Rocks Fall, Everyone Dies:
    • Trying to take on Irenicus in Spellhold without rallying the inmates first will lead to him simply One-Hit Killing the party with a Wish spell.
    • Killing a plot-important character and rendering the game Unwinnable will cause a character named Arkanis Gath to appear and kill your entire party.
  • Romance Sidequest: Baldur's Gate II was the first to implement it as a major feature, thus solidifying the trope that Bioware is now most known for. It even set the archetypes for the love interests in Bioware games; there's plenty of comparisons of Aerie to Tali or Viconia to Morrigan and Jack.
  • Romancing the Widow: The essence of Jaheira's romance subplot. If you pursue the relationship, Khalid will show up in dreams and fantasy sequences to give her his blessing, but the Master Wraith will use it to torment her about it.
  • Rousing Speech: A bit of an inversion. Before the fight with Irenicus in Suldanessellar, the PC gives their party members the opportunity to walk away from fighting their (supposedly) most powerful enemy ever. All of them, especially your love interest, will refuse.
  • Schrödinger's Gun:
    • When Anomen returns home he finds that his sister has been murdered, and an investigation is still in progress. His father is convinced it was a hit from a rival and tells you to kill him in revenge. If you kill the rival, you later find out that he was innocent; if you spare him, he was guilty all along.
    • The Cleric Stronghold quests take place based on your alignment, which are presumed to indicate worship of Talos, Helm or Lathander. As a servant of your respective god, you have five people who come to you for counsel, but their problems are the same regardless of your alignment. You have to give them advice in line with your deity's ethos in order to get the most XP. To whit:
      • The first instance is a merchant named Glinden who finds out his wife's been having an affair. Do you a) tell him to kill his wife and her lover, then rat him out to a local Corrupt Cop in exchange for a reward? b) tell him to remind his wife that the "for better or for worse" is not conditional and they have a duty to be together, thus leaving them to a stable but likely hapless union? or c) tell him to forgive her for cheating on him, thus bringing the spark of happiness back into their married lives?
      • The second involves a dwarf called Ti'Vael who was challenged to a duel and ended up killing his opponent in the heat of the moment because he wouldn't stop taunting him. Do you a) tell him to murder all the witnesses, then kill him and turn his head in for a reward? b) tell him to turn himself in and throw himself on the mercy of the courts? or c) tell him to make amends for the man's family, revealing that the jackass was a waste of skin anyway and his death has allowed the dwarf to fill the hole he left in his family?
      • The third instance involves a young woman called Rania whose faith in the church is waning and who wants to leave for a while. Do you a) kill her where she stands becasue no one leaves your church alive? b) Remind her of her duty towards the church, causing her to leave anyway because you're too inflexible? or c) tell her to give it time and come back when she's ready, prompting her to thank you for your kindness?
      • In the fourth case, an underling called Cortiso comes up to you and demands your position, claiming you've been unfairly promoted over him and generally acting like an Entitled Bastard. Do you a) let him have the position, then get your Corrupt Cop friend to drag him off for Rania's murder? b) challenge him to a duel for the position and win, killing him in the process? or c) quietly acquiesce the position to him, then allow your and his superior to tell him off and send him home, allowing you to resume your position?
      • Finally, the conclusion of the questline involves the Talassans wanting to attack the temple of Lathander. What you do also depends on your position. As a Priest of Talos, you get the order to go into the Lathanderite temple and start bashing everybody; as a Priest of Lathander, you get ordered to launch a counteroffensive by preemptively moving against the temple of Talos; as a Priest of Helm, thus placing you outside the conflict, you protect the temple of Lathander from Talassan attack, then convince the Lathanderites not to retaliate for the people's sake.
  • The Scottish Trope: If you play as a bard, you can acquire the deed to the playhouse in the Five Flagons Inn and supervise the production of a play called "The Sorcerer's Bane". But there's a rumor saying that the sorcerer it's supposed to be about really existed and he cursed the play for mocking him, resulting in ill fortune befalling anybody who says the name of the play out loud. The actor who plays the sorcerer insists that it be referred to only as "The Turmish Play".
  • Sdrawkcab Name:
  • Sealed Evil in a Six Pack: The infamous Kangaxx.
  • Sequel Hook: The game ends with a group of hooded individuals discussing the fate of Charname and the fact s/he's a Spanner in the Works. Despite the fact all of these five are the same size, they're meant to be the Bhaalspawn from Throne of Bhaal. Must have happened before the Five were fleshed out.
  • Serial Killer
    • Rejiek Hidesman, a tanner who skins his victims in his Creepy Basement.
    • Neb the child-killing gnome.
  • Sheathe Your Sword: Needed in order to defeat The Beast under Athkathla.
  • Short Cuts Make Long Delays: When investigating the Cult of the Unseeing Eye, you are told that the easiest way to kill the Unseeing Eye is to reassemble a specific artifact. This involves going to an underground city to get half of it, then through a town of undead, then through a lair of beholders, before you finally get the other half. Alternatively, a well prepared party can complete the quest much more quickly by simply entering the lair and hacking away.
  • Single Mom Stripper: One prostitute in the docks district says that she's never done it before but needs the money to support her family.
  • The Soulless: Irenicus and Bodhi, and later the Player Character and Imoen.
  • Spoony Bard: Haer'Dalis averts this entirely, being one of the best tanks in the game thanks to his defensive spells and kit abilities.
  • Squishy Wizard: Averted for most characters, especially when compared to BG I (which had Xan and Xzar). This time, all single/dual class mages have CON 16 for the invaluable +2 HP/level, and Nalia and Imoen get a few thief levels and DEX 18 (for the equally invaluable -4 AC) on top of that. Even Aerie, the resident squishy, is still somewhat better off with her DEX 17 and progresses as a cleric as well (which at least has 1D8 hp/level) - although this means her progression is considerably slower.
    • High-level wizards also have access to spells that make them far tankier than anything combat classes can achieve with armor, albeit on a temporary basis.
  • Stuck Items: Boo, Imoen's Belt at the beginning of BG2, and Edwin's necklace. The reasons for these are plot-related; Imoen's belt makes her unkillable (to avoid the plot going Off the Rails in Château Irenicus) and Edwin's necklace grants him two spells per level to represent his superior Red Wizard training.
  • Staking the Loved One: If Charname completes a romance with one of the original four love interests, this happens courtesy of Bodhi. Of course, since they're only half-turned, you can just kill them normally. Bringing them back is a different matter altogether.
  • Suffer the Slings: It's the only missile weapon available for everybody (except for Kensai and Cavaliers). Most notably it's the only missile weapon usable by Clerics (unless you're a Dwarf, in which case you can also use the little known Dwarven Thrower), so be prepared to use it a lot with the more support-oriented Clerics such as Viconia or Aerie.
  • Supernatural Repellent: Some magic spells act as this, providing varying degrees of protection from certain types of creatures. A protection from undead spell in particular can make the otherwise extremely dangerous liches and demiliches compeletly unable to do anything.
  • Superpowered Evil Side: The "Slayer" form. Although it's a little lacking on the "superpowered" thing, especially if you're not a melee class. Until Throne of Bhaal, at least, where the Slayer form becomes much more powerful. Of course, by that point, you're essentially superpowered no matter what form you're in.
    • Slayer form replaces your normal stats, number of attacks, and thac0 and is the same no matter if you're a fighter or a mage. The only difference is that you keep any passive bonuses and some equipment bonuses, so for example a Kensai-slayer will hit like a express train and be incapable of missing, except on a roll of 1, and a mage will merely rip the enemies apart like a plain fighter. It's also immune to all non-damaging spell effects making it surprisingly useful vs mages/liches/Demi-liches/mind-flayers.
    • The Slayer form was intended to be even more powerful than the form the devs eventually ended with. There used to be a web page that detailed what those powers were to be, but it no longer exists. There is a mod that restores some of the Slayer powers (or maybe all of them, it's hard to know with the web page missing).
  • Surreal Humor A Wild Mage surge in BG2 can cause a cow to materialize and fall on one of your party members.
  • Take a Third Option: The aptly named Alternatives mod was created to add more choice to the guild war between the Shadow Thieves and Bodhi's vampire coven. It offers two separate paths the player can take that do not rely on them taking a side:
    • The first path, the "good" option, is to take the side of the Athkatla City Guard and the Order of the Radiant Heart, who use the Order of the Aster - a group of clerics and paladins serving the benevolent god Lathander, who do exist in the setting - as an intermediary. Their contact is Sir Aster, a female paladin who gives the player the chance to clear out the Shadow Thieves and the vampires. Although significantly shorter, it allows the player to rescue Imoen without compromising their morals.
    • The second path, the "Screw This, I'm Outta Here" path, begins with a noble called Maleficus. Maleficus offers a path for the evil or disinterested characters who don't care enough about rescuing Imoen or getting revenge on Irenicus to put in the effort; for doing three simple errands, he will allow them to leave Amn and sail to Maztica, leaving their problems and the Bhaalspawn Crisis behind. If the player isn't suspicious when his "employer" wants them to clear out the Shadow Thieves, they will be suspicious when their ship takes them to Brynnlaw, the location of Spellhold, as dictated by canon. At this point it is revealed that Maleficus was working for Bodhi.
    • One quest has your character stumbling upon a den of brigands who are holding a noblewoman hostage. You can free her and gain reputation or you can read the ransom note, go to the designated ransom payment location and converse with the person there to obtain the Silver Pantaloons at a cost of reputation. Savvy players will think to pickpocket the Silver Pantaloons from the ransom-payer and then slip off without saying a word, allowing them to return to the brigands' hideout and release their hostage. She will be pissed that you left her to rot initially, but because you are ultimately freeing her you suffer no reputation hit.
  • Take Your Time: Early events allow you to take your time, so that you can level up a bit, while later on you get timed quests more often. Your sister may be getting mind-raped by the Cowled Wizards and then Irenicus while you're out doing random side quests for a few months, but rest assured no matter when you set out to save her she'll be in the same condition when you arrive. Gets even worse after Spellhold, when you ostensibly have no soul, are slowly dying, and Irenicus is in the midst of laying waste to an Elven city. You can still run around doing inane random quests for as long as you like.
  • Talking the Monster to Death: At one point, you can talk down an Aboleth.
  • Talking Weapon: Liliarcor. The game's flavor text mentions that the sword's been passed from one adventurer to another because his banter starts to wear on a person.
  • There Can Be Only One: Rolling up an elf named Drizzt is a bad idea; the real Drizzt Do'urden will likely attempt to skewer you.
  • Thieves' Guild: There are two in Athkala.
  • Throwing Your Sword Always Works: Subverted and Lampshaded in Baldur's Gate II when a man, claiming to have broken out of prison, throws his "mighty scimitar at your head!" When this does minimal damage, he says "Oh, that normally works..." and leaves.
  • Tiny Guy, Huge Girl: In the Temple District in the second game, the player can encounter a gnome who is in love with a human female Paladin but is too self-conscious to declare himself to her and, in a shout-out to Cyrano de Bergerac, tries to help Garrick the Bard woo her instead. Subesequent visits to the district reveal that the Paladin has figured out who really penned Garrick's love declarations and that she and the gnome have gotten married.
  • Tome of Eldritch Lore: This is what Edwin thinks the Nether Scrolls are. Much to his chagrin, they were not what he expected.
    • As other materials on the Realms make clear, he is perfectly right about what the Nether Scrolls are. Of course, Eldritch Lore in D&D covers magical transformations of all sorts...
  • Too Dumb to Live:
    • You may be attacked by low-level muggers every once in a while in Athkatla, wearing nothing but leather armor and short sword.
    • The same goes to the drow in Ust Natha if you're exposed. Even civilians will attack you, with basic daggers or nothing at all.
    • The Sahuagin of the Underwater City are this, almost to a man. They've engaged in mass ritual sacrifice for generations and are embroiled in a civil war, to the point where the remaining Sahuagin are mostly inbred and there aren't enough women left to populate the city. Charaname is ostensibly prophecized to save the Sahuagin, but regardless of which side they take in the civil war, both will remain hostile and force you to kill them. Even usurping the king and installing the rebel prince may not turn the city's fortune around, as the prince hints at disinterest in actually stopping the bloodshed.
  • Tragic Monster: Your love interest, if you have one, will be turned into a vampire by Bodhi. Fortunately they get better.
  • Unexplained Recovery: Characters who return in the sequel are quick to brush off a question about why they're not dead. In a D&D world, where Death Is Cheap for the sufficiently powerful or wealthy, this actually makes perfect sense.
  • Video Game Caring Potential: Besides all the acts of kindness you can do for random schmucks, various Companion-Specific Sidequest-s and romances allow plenty of opportunity for this.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential:
    • Having better-developed party members lets you be personally cruel on a level the first game never allowed. Modest examples include letting the daughter of Jan's beloved be killed by her abusive father, forcing Keldorn to lock up his wife and alienate his family, and leaving Jaheira and Minsc imprisoned in Irenicus's lab. To say nothing of putting together incompatible party members, which eventually ends in a fight to the death. Many of the romance banters also have at least one dialogue option that breaks the relationship off rudely, abruptly, and permanently.
    • At the climax of Dorn's quest in Shadows of Amn, you have to sacrifice a 'sapient being' in a summoning circle in order to summon a demon. The way the player is supposed to do this is to sacrifice a summoned monster, or to resurrect an NPC who died in the middle of the circle and then sacrifice him. However, there's nothing to stop the player from taking Dorn's advice and sacrificing a party member. Most of them die cursing the player's name or threatening revenge, but a few—most notably Aerie, Nalia, and Neera—die screaming in agony and begging to know what they did to deserve this. And special mention goes to Minsc, who dies trying to get Boo away from the circle so the hamster doesn't die as well.
  • Volleying Insults: Korgan and Imoen.
    Korgan: Hmph, Imoen, yer an o'er-lame excuse fer a member o' this party and I be tired of exertin' meself to protect ye! Next time I let ye perish, screaming like a ninny as ye does!
    Imoen: The last time I saw you exert yourself over anything was the last slab of pork in an inn. If you could keep up with me with that beer gut of yours I'd be amazed.
    Korgan: Beer gut?! Why, ye stinkin' wench, how dare ye! Keep up with my keen axe as it flies towards yer head, more like! Though it'd be like splittin' a hair, skinny as ye are!
    Imoen: I'd be startled if a drunk dwarven oaf like yourself could hit the broad side of a barn with your axe. And while we're talking about stench, let's talk about the last time you passed out in your own vomit.
    Korgan: An outrage! Yer a canker on me backside and the world would be best rid of ye! Loathsome mongrel she-dog!
    Imoen: Brutish pig! You're nothing but a boil needing lancing!
    Korgan: I've seen harlots with less open sores than ye, ye pimple-faced, whining gutter-snipe!
    Imoen: You cantankerous, foul-mouthed excuse for a gully dwarf!
    Korgan: Gully dwarf? Har har! Ye knows how to hit low, ye does! Har har! Yer a fine, fine lass, ye are, Imoen. That Gorion of yers would be proud.
    Imoen: Aw, gee. Thanks, Korgan!
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting:
    • A special ability of druids. Interplay touted it a fair bit prior to the release of Baldur's Gate II, though in the final game it's essentially useless.
    • A side quest involves
  • The War Has Just Begun: You just defeated Irenicus, banished him to the deepest pits of Hell and taken your soul back, and the next scene shows a Omniscient Council of Vagueness (probably the Five,) plotting to take you out.
  • Weakened by the Light: Vampires of course, though this doesn't come up much, as they only appear at night or underground. More directly relevant to gameplay is Drow weapons and armour made of adamantite. They are likely to be much better than most others and thus useful for the Underdark section of the game but only that section, since as soon as they get brought topside the sunlight causes them to crumble to dust. Even if it's night time.
  • Who Names Their Kid "Dude"?: One of the members of the Shadow Thieves is called "Mook." She lives up to it as well.
  • Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?:
    • Inverted — when Irenicus captures you in Spellhold, he wants the party disposed of instantly, but Bodhi overrules him (without his knowledge and consent) and tries to have you executed in a way that will amuse her. Needless to say, it backfires and Irenicus is none too pleased.
    • When you fight Irenicus in Spellhold without adequate support, he simply casts a Total Party Kill spell (it's called "Rapture of the Father" in the game and apparently has something to do with the ritual he did on you earlier).
  • Would Hurt a Child:
    • A side quest involves a child killer; the party must retrieve a teddy bear from him so the ghost of the victim can rest in peace.
    • A second side quest ends in confrontation with a different child killer, Neb, who the protagonist likely met in the first game and who you always escapes there. Not so in this game though it turns out that not only has Neb killed children but he has enslaved some of their ghosts, using them against the player when confronted.
  • Wooden Stake: Vampires need to be staked in their coffins after being defeated. Consequently, wooden stakes are an item you need to find/carry.
  • Words Can Break My Bones: There are eight schools of magic used by both arcane and divine casters, and unlike in the first game (where the magic language was unidentifiable), each comes with a set of three Latin words. Each set of Latin uses legible, valid Latin words (although not valid grammar), and all eight phrases clearly connect to the school being used. Admittedly, that last part might be debatable.
    Abjuration: "Manus, Potentis, Paro" = "A hand, powerful, I prepare"
    Alteration: "Praeses, Alia, Fero" = "Protecting, another, I bring this forth"
    Conjuration: "Facio, Voco, Ferre" = "This I do, I call, to bring you forth"
    Divination: "Scio, Didici, Pecto" = "I know, for I have studied, with my mind"
    Enchantment: "Cupio, Virtus, Licet" = "I want, excellence, allowed to me"
    Evocation: "Incertus, Pulcher, Imperio" = "Uncertain, beautiful things, I command"
    Illusion: "Veritas, Credo, Oculos" = "The truth, I believe, with my eyes"
    Necromancy: "Vita, Mortis, Careo" = "Life, and death, I am without"
  • Wretched Hive: Athkatla. There are some law-enforcing and law-abiding elements, such as the City Guard, The Order of the Radiant Heart, and lots of ordinary people going about their lives. However, the Guard has their hands full trying to deal with crime, and, as Keldorn explains, the Order refuses to become politically active. The Shadow Thieves and Bodhi's guild are the real powers in any case. It comes complete with several Bad Guy Bars(especially the Copper Coronet), the Slums, and a Not-So-Safe Harbor.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: The closest you get to going anywhere near Candlekeep is in your dreams, which draw upon your memories.
  • You Can't Thwart Stage One: You can't stop Irenicus from stealing your's and Imoen's souls in SoA, and in ToB you can't stop Yaga-Shura from razing Saradush, nor can you stop Melissan's plan to kill all the Bhaalspawn until it's only you and (possibly) Imoen and Viekang left.)

Alternative Title(s): Baldurs Gate 2, Baldurs Gate II Shadows Of Amn