Larian Studios
Posted By: Darth Rauko Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 08:53 PM
In BG2 we had 25 companions, which are playable and recruitable characters throughout the game.

In BG3 we're going to have only 5 (or 6)?

Posted By: Panicintrinsica Re: Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 09:44 PM
It's been 20 years. Standards have changed. A Lot.

Each new companion is a custom model, a writer, new animations, and a voice actor at minimum. If each companion has their own companion quest, then it is designers, more writers, more animators and more actors, and much, much more time and money. We are just not in an era anymore where you can bang out generic companions in an after new with a junior staff writer and a portrait.
Posted By: WarBaby2 Re: Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 09:52 PM
Originally Posted by Panicintrinsica
It's been 20 years. Standards have changed. A Lot.

Each new companion is a custom model, a writer, new animations, and a voice actor at minimum. If each companion has their own companion quest, then it is designers, more writers, more animators and more actors, and much, much more time and money. We are just not in an era anymore where you can bang out generic companions in an after new with a junior staff writer and a portrait.


Sad but true: Once you go full voice and performance capture, you have limits... if Larian needed to do that for a Baldur's Gate game? Well, that's a different question. Personally, I wouldn't have minded reading, and reused animations are usually fine if they are subtle enough. wink
Posted By: Deemer Re: Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 09:53 PM
Originally Posted by Panicintrinsica
It's been 20 years. Standards have changed. A Lot.

Each new companion is a custom model, a writer, new animations, and a voice actor at minimum. If each companion has their own companion quest, then it is designers, more writers, more animators and more actors, and much, much more time and money. We are just not in an era anymore where you can bang out generic companions in an after new with a junior staff writer and a portrait.


If Larian is going to stick to only five characters, then this is a pretty pathetic degree of variety. We have a chaotic evil rogue, a lawful evil gith, a cleric of an evil deity, a devil-dealing warlock, and a power-thirsty wizard. Not one classic hero (or even an interesting anti-hero...) in the bunch. I'd rather use hirelings than just about any of these assholes.

Please tell me we're getting hirelings.
Posted By: YzzSC Re: Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 10:01 PM
Still BG is known for having a lot of companions. Sure we dont want 25 of them, but at least say 8 or 9? Why? Well I want to build that good hearted heroic adventure group but I also want to be able to play a group of their evil opposites, of course with a few neutral that fits into both. With just 5-6 characters you are very restricted, you MUST know about the characters in advance to know if you can even get a party that you are hoping for. And you will even more end up running with the same characters. Also this goes hand in hand with that we need to have larger parties, 4 characters is just to little. 5 at minimum but I would prefer 6. Just to give you a flexibility with how you play and with tactics since tactics are important in this game at a whole other level then it was back in BG 1 & 2.
Posted By: Panicintrinsica Re: Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 10:07 PM
Originally Posted by WarBaby2
Sad but true: Once you go full voice and performance capture, you have limits... if Larian needed to do that for a Baldur's Gate game? Well, that's a different question. Personally, I wouldn't have minded reading, and reused animations are usually fine if they are subtle enough. wink

You don't even need performance capture to make it impractical. Look at DOS2, or better yet, Pillars of Eternity which was blatantly going after the Infinity Engine diehards; you still don't get more than a handful of companions, because even things like writing standards have gone up so much in the last few decades that churning out two dozen companions with one defining character trait just is not an option anymore for AA and AAA production.

Don't get me wrong, I played all those same games in the 90s / 00s and loved them, but that's just not where games are anymore, and there's just not much of a market for it. Personally I think it's all for the better, and would MUCH rather have 4-6 fully developed companions then 20+ who I barely care about and a dozen of which I will never even use. /shrug
Posted By: UnderworldHades Re: Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 10:16 PM
There are more than 5 companions. 5 companions is only for EA for now.
Posted By: WarBaby2 Re: Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 10:17 PM
Originally Posted by Panicintrinsica
...but that's just not where games are anymore, and there's just not much of a market for it. Personally I think it's all for the better, and would MUCH rather have 4-6 fully developed companions then 20+ who I barely care about and a dozen of which I will never even use. /shrug



I played basically every AA and AAA RPG in last two decades, and I really can't agree with that. I mean, sure, there probably is MORE writing per individual character in, say, a Mass Effect Andromeda, then there was for most of the roster in BG2 combined, but quality wise? Nah, sorry, but a "good" character doesn't have to be "overwritten" to be memorable and feel developed... it still mostly comes down to writing skill, as it ever was.
Posted By: YzzSC Re: Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 10:26 PM
Originally Posted by Panicintrinsica
Don't get me wrong, I played all those same games in the 90s / 00s and loved them, but that's just not where games are anymore, and there's just not much of a market for it. Personally I think it's all for the better, and would MUCH rather have 4-6 fully developed companions then 20+ who I barely care about and a dozen of which I will never even use. /shrug


In POE you had 8 companions in basic game and then 3more in the expansion. In POE 2 you had 7 companions and then 6 sidekicks which are not as fleshed out but still there to give you the variety. Also you had 5 party members. And in another recent RPG that is seen as a child of the D&D and BG you have Pathfinder: Kingmaker where you have 12 companions (or thirteen depending on how you count) and 6 slots for your party. Something this game is lacking, to properly honor the heritage of BG 1 & 2 so do I think they at minimum need to get up to 5 companions but I would prefer 6.
Posted By: Deemer Re: Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 10:30 PM
Originally Posted by UnderworldHades
There are more than 5 companions. 5 companions is only for EA for now.


I've seen a few people say that, but none of those people were associated with Larian. What's the source on this?

The fact that the game's a DIVOS game and not a DnD game can be papered over with some UI and balance changes, but crappy companion choices are forever.
Posted By: Gabriel Farishta Re: Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 11:12 PM
Originally Posted by Deemer
Originally Posted by Panicintrinsica
It's been 20 years. Standards have changed. A Lot.

Each new companion is a custom model, a writer, new animations, and a voice actor at minimum. If each companion has their own companion quest, then it is designers, more writers, more animators and more actors, and much, much more time and money. We are just not in an era anymore where you can bang out generic companions in an after new with a junior staff writer and a portrait.


If Larian is going to stick to only five characters, then this is a pretty pathetic degree of variety. We have a chaotic evil rogue, a lawful evil gith, a cleric of an evil deity, a devil-dealing warlock, and a power-thirsty wizard. Not one classic hero (or even an interesting anti-hero...) in the bunch. I'd rather use hirelings than just about any of these assholes.

Please tell me we're getting hirelings.


Look, this is precisely the point. So far, EA has only opened 6 classes, and the companions cover 5 of them. Why don't we have, say, a classic hero like a paladin or a neutral caretaker like a druid? Well, probably because that class isn't ready yet. I do get that the personalities of the companions they released from the get go could have been more varied, but this is verymuch a work in progress.

And honestly, the fact that there are more classes yet to come also implies (to me) that there are more companions yet to come. We might not get a gigantic 25-person roster, but I would expect 10-12 by the time the game releases.
Posted By: WarBaby2 Re: Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 11:14 PM
Originally Posted by Gabriel Farishta
And honestly, the fact that there are more classes yet to come also implies (to me) that there are more companions yet to come. We might not get a gigantic 25-person roster, but I would expect 10-12 by the time the game releases.


I sure hope so. Not only is the current selection quite limited, it also feels like something a very inexperienced (and edgy) DM would come up with...
Posted By: UnderworldHades Re: Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 11:19 PM
Originally Posted by Deemer
Originally Posted by UnderworldHades
There are more than 5 companions. 5 companions is only for EA for now.


I've seen a few people say that, but none of those people were associated with Larian. What's the source on this?

The fact that the game's a DIVOS game and not a DnD game can be papered over with some UI and balance changes, but crappy companion choices are forever.



They have stated it multiple times in panels and AMA's. The only 5 now are all evil or neutral types because they want people to do evil options.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qboLvZ5YQSg

It's somewhere in that panel. If you really care for a source on these companions just being the mean ones, you can watch it yourself.
Posted By: Gabriel Farishta Re: Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 11:22 PM
Originally Posted by UnderworldHades

The only 5 now are all evil or neutral types because they want people to do evil options.


Yea, that reasoning kinda makes sense to me. They have certainly done a lot to make choices matter beyond an on-paper alignment statement, and they want people to explore that.
Posted By: Riandor Re: Only 5 companions? - 07/10/20 11:28 PM
Yep it was confirmed.
For now you’re just getting the neutral to evil companions in the EA for testing purposes.

All the goody 2 shoes ones come later.
Posted By: Darth Rauko Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 02:14 PM
Up. Looking for more opinions.
If we have few companions to choose from (and considering that we always carry 3 with us) the game becomes monotonous.

I don't expect 25 like the BG2 (or almost 30 like the BG2ee), but at least double what we have now (10/12).

--sorry for my english, it's not my native language

Posted By: Uncle Lester Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 03:04 PM
We're going to have more than 5 companions. At the very minimum 8. (Adam is writing A character and one writer is said to write two linked ones, so at least 3 more, as I understand it.) It's been said though it won't be as much as in BG1/2.

Sources:
Panel From Hell, 1:25:45 - what's coming during EA.
Yesterday's interview (link on Swen's twitter) - somewhere in there is included a mention that the current companions lean towards evil (can't remember where it was first stated, Dropped Frames interview perhaps?); it's a 30 minute watch, I recommend it as Swen talks about EA plans and also confirms dialogue will be heavily tweaked (something people here suggest a lot, for good reasons).

As for my personal opinions/estimations, I think 10-12 is likely. 12 would be great as you can have one per class. (More would be even better, of course...)
Posted By: Gmazca Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 03:31 PM
I could be mistaken, but I believe BG2 had 17 NPCs (with 3 or 4 more in the EE version). Regardless, I know there was an interview where Swen said they were working on more Origin characters/NPCs. No reason to think they have released them all just yet. Not to mention, I'm sure a few will pop up in Baldur's Gate itself.
Posted By: Eireson Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 03:32 PM
Got to agree that we need at least a few more companions, and I'd prefer to see some more variety in their backgrounds i.e. some more on the neutral/good side. Obviously whilst they are working together to get rid of the worms in their head they have a reason to cooperate but aside from that it would seem fairly obvious that the current companions are going to be disagreeing with you pretty much all the time if you want to play a hero character.
Posted By: Nyanko Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 03:35 PM
Two words: Early Access. You're welcome.
Posted By: endolex Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 03:36 PM
One companion per class would be great, a little like in Neverwinter Nights 2.
Posted By: Vithaar Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 03:45 PM
agreed, would also add non-tadploed ones, could be fun dynamic
Posted By: Darth Rauko Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 05:37 PM
Originally Posted by Gmazca
I could be mistaken, but I believe BG2 had 17 NPCs (with 3 or 4 more in the EE version).


BG1
25 + 4.

BG2
16 + 5.
https://baldursgate.fandom.com/wiki/Companions


Originally Posted by Nyanko
Two words: Early Access. You're welcome.

Maybe not, All the art and graphic design of the game (including the cinematics) imply that these 5 companions are the main ones in the story.
Posted By: Warlocke Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 05:49 PM
Originally Posted by Darth Rauko
Originally Posted by Gmazca
I could be mistaken, but I believe BG2 had 17 NPCs (with 3 or 4 more in the EE version).


BG1
25 + 4.

BG2
16 + 5.
https://baldursgate.fandom.com/wiki/Companions


Originally Posted by Nyanko
Two words: Early Access. You're welcome.

Maybe not, All the art and graphic design of the game (including the cinematics) imply that these 5 companions are the main ones in the story.


Swen has already said that more origin characters are coming. Photoshop is amazing thing. As the announce more characters the art will be adjusted to include them.
Posted By: HeavensBells Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 06:13 PM
Originally Posted by Panicintrinsica
It's been 20 years. Standards have changed. A Lot.

Each new companion is a custom model, a writer, new animations, and a voice actor at minimum. If each companion has their own companion quest, then it is designers, more writers, more animators and more actors, and much, much more time and money. We are just not in an era anymore where you can bang out generic companions in an after new with a junior staff writer and a portrait.


You do know that BG1, which was developed in the 90s, had over 34 voice actors (as officially listed in ImDB) for inumerous character and throughout dialogues in all game, they had an extensive amount of characters with different personalities and really unique, yeah Bioware rocked the narratives in the 90s and early 2000s. It's actually just a matter of time and effort instead of being an impossibility. It doesn't look like an issue to me to add more unique companions for one of each class at least after all there are only 7 more potentially missing from the rooster.

Sure animations and facial capturing might be a bit harder but they own that technology and it isn't a matter of recreating the wheel, just using it. Might be time consuming but that's why they opted to release it as EA instead of waiting 4 years to release a full complete game.
Posted By: Gabriel Farishta Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 07:36 PM
Originally Posted by Darth Rauko

Maybe not, All the art and graphic design of the game (including the cinematics) imply that these 5 companions are the main ones in the story.


Just because these are the "main" (aka tadpoled; aka Origin) companions doesn't mean there won't be more very soon.

We might get another 1-2 tadpoled companions; the rest are likely to not have tadpoles, and to show up later in the story (say towards the end of Act 1, since the party gets fixed after that).

One last thing. Can someone confirm whether or not Gale is actually tadpoled? I haven't seen anything yet to confirm that he is. Then again, I've been mucking around in the early game to try different things out.
Posted By: Warlocke Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 07:39 PM
Originally Posted by Gabriel Farishta
Originally Posted by Darth Rauko

Maybe not, All the art and graphic design of the game (including the cinematics) imply that these 5 companions are the main ones in the story.


Just because these are the "main" (aka tadpoled; aka Origin) companions doesn't mean there won't be more very soon.

We might get another 1-2 tadpoled companions; the rest are likely to not have tadpoles, and to show up later in the story (say towards the end of Act 1, since the party gets fixed after that).

One last thing. Can someone confirm whether or not Gale is actually tadpoled? I haven't seen anything yet to confirm that he is. Then again, I've been mucking around in the early game to try different things out.


Gale specifically says he has a tadpole when you meet him.
Posted By: Uncle Lester Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 09:22 PM
They've stated they intend all companions to be origins/tadpoled. And yes, more are coming. From what I understand, the current 5 aren't any more "main" than the ones to come.

From the March reddit AMA:

Will all possible companions be available as Origin character options or will there be companions available only as NPCs?

Swen: We are trying to make all characters with backstory available as origin characters. Other than that, you will be able to recruit generic mercenaries and customize these. We’re also planning to allow you to build a custom party from the character creation screen though that most likely won’t be present in early access from the get go.
Posted By: LawRecords Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 10:53 PM
Agreed, we need more companions. I'm sure we'll get more though, seeing as its just EA. I'd think you want at least 10 options so that your play-throughs can vary significantly.
Posted By: Merry Mayhem Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 11:11 PM
I have to agree, BG1 had 25. I am not expecting that many but there should be at least 1 companion for each class to give players options. Maybe more will be added when they add the rest of the classes?
Posted By: Darth Rauko Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 11:37 PM
Originally Posted by Uncle Lester
We’re also planning to allow you to build a custom party from the character creation screen though that most likely won’t be present in early access from the get go.

Custom party from the start would be great

ty all
Posted By: wpmaura Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 11:38 PM
Here is hoping there is more, even Dragon Age had 8, would be nice if there was like 10-12
Posted By: Warlocke Re: Only 5 companions? - 08/10/20 11:57 PM
Originally Posted by Darth Rauko
Originally Posted by Uncle Lester
We’re also planning to allow you to build a custom party from the character creation screen though that most likely won’t be present in early access from the get go.

Custom party from the start would be great

ty all


That is a feature that is coming, but you can do it right now by creating a LAN game with yourself. I have an all Drow custom party and my main file has two custom characters.

Here you go:

forums.larian.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Main=87799&Number=679859#Post679859

Posted By: CamKitty Re: Only 5 companions? - 09/10/20 12:39 AM
Yeah, the edgelord companions don't inspire confidence of anything besides killing them all on site in game. It's actually pathetic to see them react the moment you want to help people.

Thank god I can make ones myself apparently later that aren't like a 12 year old's first edgy character. Last i checked most DnD parties want a party that are at least neutral to each other
Posted By: Roxeus Re: Only 5 companions? - 25/10/20 10:48 PM
Originally Posted by Gabriel Farishta
Originally Posted by Deemer
Originally Posted by Panicintrinsica
It's been 20 years. Standards have changed. A Lot.

Each new companion is a custom model, a writer, new animations, and a voice actor at minimum. If each companion has their own companion quest, then it is designers, more writers, more animators and more actors, and much, much more time and money. We are just not in an era anymore where you can bang out generic companions in an after new with a junior staff writer and a portrait.


If Larian is going to stick to only five characters, then this is a pretty pathetic degree of variety. We have a chaotic evil rogue, a lawful evil gith, a cleric of an evil deity, a devil-dealing warlock, and a power-thirsty wizard. Not one classic hero (or even an interesting anti-hero...) in the bunch. I'd rather use hirelings than just about any of these assholes.

Please tell me we're getting hirelings.


Look, this is precisely the point. So far, EA has only opened 6 classes, and the companions cover 5 of them. Why don't we have, say, a classic hero like a paladin or a neutral caretaker like a druid? Well, probably because that class isn't ready yet. I do get that the personalities of the companions they released from the get go could have been more varied, but this is verymuch a work in progress.

And honestly, the fact that there are more classes yet to come also implies (to me) that there are more companions yet to come. We might not get a gigantic 25-person roster, but I would expect 10-12 by the time the game releases.

En una las entrevista prometieron mercenarios antes que salga el EA espero que cumplan D;!! o me dejen editar sus companion -.-
Posted By: Roxeus Re: Only 5 companions? - 25/10/20 10:50 PM
Originally Posted by Gabriel Farishta
Originally Posted by Deemer
Originally Posted by Panicintrinsica
It's been 20 years. Standards have changed. A Lot.

Each new companion is a custom model, a writer, new animations, and a voice actor at minimum. If each companion has their own companion quest, then it is designers, more writers, more animators and more actors, and much, much more time and money. We are just not in an era anymore where you can bang out generic companions in an after new with a junior staff writer and a portrait.


If Larian is going to stick to only five characters, then this is a pretty pathetic degree of variety. We have a chaotic evil rogue, a lawful evil gith, a cleric of an evil deity, a devil-dealing warlock, and a power-thirsty wizard. Not one classic hero (or even an interesting anti-hero...) in the bunch. I'd rather use hirelings than just about any of these assholes.

Please tell me we're getting hirelings.


Look, this is precisely the point. So far, EA has only opened 6 classes, and the companions cover 5 of them. Why don't we have, say, a classic hero like a paladin or a neutral caretaker like a druid? Well, probably because that class isn't ready yet. I do get that the personalities of the companions they released from the get go could have been more varied, but this is verymuch a work in progress.

And honestly, the fact that there are more classes yet to come also implies (to me) that there are more companions yet to come. We might not get a gigantic 25-person roster, but I would expect 10-12 by the time the game releases.

En una las entrevista prometieron mercenarios antes que salga el EA espero que cumplan D;!! o me dejen editar sus companion -.-
Originally Posted by Eireson
Got to agree that we need at least a few more companions, and I'd prefer to see some more variety in their backgrounds i.e. some more on the neutral/good side. Obviously whilst they are working together to get rid of the worms in their head they have a reason to cooperate but aside from that it would seem fairly obvious that the current companions are going to be disagreeing with you pretty much all the time if you want to play a hero character.

Bueno esos compañeros fueron creados para sigas lado malvado ya que pidieron a los jugadores jueguen el rol malvado en la EA por que habían creado sorpresas en lado malvado
Posted By: Roxeus Re: Only 5 companions? - 25/10/20 10:55 PM
Originally Posted by Uncle Lester
They've stated they intend all companions to be origins/tadpoled. And yes, more are coming. From what I understand, the current 5 aren't any more "main" than the ones to come.

From the March reddit AMA:

Will all possible companions be available as Origin character options or will there be companions available only as NPCs?

Swen: We are trying to make all characters with backstory available as origin characters. Other than that, you will be able to recruit generic mercenaries and customize these. We’re also planning to allow you to build a custom party from the character creation screen though that most likely won’t be present in early access from the get go.

La mejor noticia !!!!!!! D; pasa link donde leiste eso mi tio google no me muestra mas que cuando iba salir Baldurgate 3 -.- 2h para encontrar algo ni idea por que no entiende
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