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I'm kind of perturbed by how every thread in the Video Games section is about a new or upcoming game. How about some threads about old-school games?
So here's a thread for Baldur's Gate. I'm playing through it for the first time.
I know it's a thirteen year old game, but I would like spoilers to be spoilertagged, because I'm only playing through it for the first time here.
I'm currently in Beregost. Thanks to the non-linear nature of the game, I accidentally did a bit of Sequence Breaking and went straight to Nashkel after the Friendly Arm Inn (because Xzar and Montarion wanted me to go there, not that it mattered since I ditched them afterwards anyway) and ended up confused by all the high level enemies I had to fight.
Oh, and again, spoilertags, please.
I'm playing it for the first time too! (I'm way ahead of you though, and I'm up to Chapter Seven).
I'm enjoying the complete batshit randomness of it, though I'm playing with mods, so that might count for some of it. (For some reason the mods make Imoen really, really fucking annoying. I've been resisting the urge to kill her, though I have been using her as a human trap detector.)
Playing with the Baldur's Gate NPC Mod has been a slightly... frustrating experience. Particularly as some of the characters are written as weird stereotypes that I'm not sure they were intended as (Kivan, for instance, is suddenly incredibly emo at times.) Coran's a total bro and he carries a baby into battle now! Awesome! And the Dynaheir spoiled a plot-twist for me due to a script going off too early, I think. I did like the relationship built between herself and Imoen (which presumably changes depending on how you multi-class Imoen), and Dynaheir is actually kind of clever forshadowing, if spoilt by the aformentioned bug. Actually, my biggest compliment is about the mod is the way party members have been tied into the plot more, or their roles have been expanded. Dynaheir, Kivan, Imoen and Branwen all have decent expanded material, and I think Quayle and Jaheira would do too.
I've been playing a fairly good, rational, law-abiding cleric guy, with a party of Imoen, Coran, Misc, Dynaheir and Kivan. I'm thinking about going and trying an evil run-through after, though, so I can try out some of the other companion types. What about you?
I'm playing a good party, too. I didn't really put much thought into it until Jaheira and Khalid started fighting Xzar and Montarion. That's when I realized I couldn't mix and match whatever party members I wanted. And then I found out that you can potentially lose party members by recruiting certain evil characters!
Xzaz and Motanron fighting happened to me too, apropos of nothing. I gathe there's meant to be some sort of warning, but I didn't get one.
You palying with mods? I seriously recomend Tu Tu, just so people walk faster.
edited 21st Aug '11 7:08:56 AM by Nicknacks
I've always loved the BG series.
Though I'm more a fan of 2 because 2 has all my favorite party members.
Few partymates are ever as memorable as Mazzy Fentan. Or Jan.
edited 21st Aug '11 7:52:49 AM by Midgetsnowman
I prefer playing my first playthrough without mods, although if there is a mod for 1440x900 resolution, I'd gladly download it.
The fact that I'm running the game on a Mac Book via Crossover Games might make it somewhat of an issue, though.
You must gather your party before venturing forth.
edited 21st Aug '11 8:03:18 AM by Rotpar
I got a kick out of reading about Minsc's "miniature giant space hamster", especially since I had played Mass Effect 2 previously.
Speaking of which, I'm kind of worried that I recruited Minsc too early, since I Sequence Broke to Nashkell at such a low level. I had to leave him in Nashkel because my party wasn't leveled up enough to rescue Dynaheir and I didn't want him to leave.
You have been waylaid by enemies and must defend yourself.
seriously though, a tip: magic missile is your best friend evar because it always hits and is basically insta-cast. If there's an enemy mage, then the second combat starts, chuck a magic missile at the mage. Almost guaranteed to interrupt the spell he's casting. and as soon as they start casting another spell? Throw another magic missile!
edited 21st Aug '11 8:37:22 AM by Blissey1
Evil parties are annoying. I think BG 2 had four evil character total for the party. So you were stuck with a tolerant neutral character every time.
I was so pissed the first time I ever played Baldur's Gate. Made a necromancer, did all the side quests and tutorials in Candlekeep, went out for the starting event, was killed by the arrow that's scripted to hit you. 1st level wizards with 4 hp suck.
edited 21st Aug '11 8:41:36 AM by Rotpar
I wonder why there never was a Baldur's Gate III.
Interplay kind of went belly-up at that point and Bioware went off on it's own. Plus 3rd. edition.
Besides, the story's done, not much you can do after ascending to Godhood.
edited 21st Aug '11 11:42:52 AM by Arilou
The only real annoying thing about Baldur's Gate so far is that not knowing where I was meant to go next, I sometimes run into enemies who are beyond my party's level.
BG 1 is kind of unstructured that way. *generally* speaking it gets tougher the farther north an east you get. But yeah, remember running into a basilisk unprepared...
With the mods, they warn you. :P In general, if you travel too far north you encounter Ankhegs, too far west are Sirenes and too far east are Basilisks and warp spider traps. At least the first lot aren't so bad.
The game does actively troll you at times, though. Haven't got a potion of Mirror Eyes, or Protection From Petrification? Well, you needed them to get past this one last room in this very long, stupidly trapped filled dungeon. Whoops!
So now you know!
edited 21st Aug '11 3:27:22 PM by Nicknacks
To be fair, I believe there's a potion and/or scroll somewhere in that very dungeon. They're not COMPLETE trolls.
Both Sirens and Ankhegs can be very good XP if you kill them early on though, especially sirens.
And remember, in BG 1, Bow is king. And even slings/darts can be fairly useful for interrupting things.
EDIT: Especially darts. You can get a pretty ridicilous fire-rate with those things.
EDIT 2: You can also use summons and/or animate dead to deal with basilisks.
edited 21st Aug '11 3:54:26 PM by Arilou
Throne of Bhaal basically is Baldur's Gate III, in a cut down form anyway. The original plan was to have a full blown sequel that followed on from the end of II, but there were problems with retaining the rights to make another Dungeons & Dragons game. They were allowed to make an xpac though, so they did that.
I'm kinda glad they just made Throne of Bhaal though, because Baldur's Gate III probably would've been in 3D and used the 3rd Edition rules.
I did a search and came up with this.
Doesn't sound too enticing as it doesn't look as if BioWare would be doing it.
@sirens being good XP: just remember, once Minsc goes into a rage, he's basically immune to the sirens charm spells!
If that npc mod is the one I'm thinking about, I actually helped write the Branwen dialogue for that. I never did check out the finished product, though... hope it turned out satisfactorily. BG 1 is definitely oldschool in a way that even BG 2 isn't, but that has its own kind of charm, if you enjoy merciless random encounters and roguelike-esque dungeon crawling. I'm proud to own both games, and would damn well buy 'em again on Steam if they came out there. (I also preferred BG 1 Imoen to BG 2 Imoen. Go figure. I can't believe you're feeding poor girl to traps!)
Very surprised that the BG license didn't make the transition to third edition. No reason to throw away a perfectly good best-selling brand name like that when you have a system to prop it up with. Mayhap the legal complexities of who owns it are more arcane than I'd like to think.
edited 21st Aug '11 7:20:44 PM by Karkadinn
Part of why I love the BG series so much is their use of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 2nd Edition, which I grew up playing, so I'm glad the series never jumped to 3rd Edition. It probably would've turned out similar to Neverwinter Nights, which is a good game for its multiplayer, but a step down from Baldur's Gate II as a single-player RPG, both in terms of story and gameplay.
It did..as a pair of godawfully mediocre action rpgs.
edited 21st Aug '11 7:44:31 PM by Midgetsnowman
Oh yeah, there was Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance. The less said about that spinoff series, the better.
I remember renting the first one and being all "Its got BG in the name. this is gonna rock!"
Chris Avellone even wrote for the first one. Not signficantly, but he wrote for it.
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