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#661647 05/03/20 05:49 PM
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Hello everyone,

I apologise if I doubled someone thread, but I couldn't find anything on that subject so here it is.

Someone brought to my attention this article:
https://screenrant.com/baldur-gate-3-dialogue-past-tense-breaks-immersion/

While I don't agree with everything being said, I do think that using the first person, past tense is an odd choice - unless there is some framing device we don't know yet about. Still reminding players that they are not participating in the story is an odd one.


What is curious, is that D:OS2 did a similar thing, and I think, more naturally, and effectively.
https://imgur.com/GWZruCr

What do you guys think?

Last edited by vometia; 05/03/20 05:55 PM. Reason: links
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It's stupid odd and I don't like it (unless there is some justification for it but anything like that wasn't preseted to us).

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RPS asked about it, and according to them it seemed to be a reason for it:

"Matthew did actually ask about it (Swen said he was the only person to ask). If memory serves Swen said something about it being almost like the character is telling a story to someone, but don’t nail me to the wall because I don’t have the interview audio right now."

"Yeah, Swen seemed to suggest it might have a mysterious relevance – he ducked the question and smiled enigmatically. I wondered if it might be the mind tadpole inside your head trying to ‘write your story’ or something."

source: comments section on
https://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2020/02/27/baldurs-gate-3-is-nearly-here/#comments

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I am convinced that what we saw was prologue. The player character is recounting events to a third-party and eventually we will catch up to that point in the narrative and will play out the rest of the game in present tense. At least, that is what I'm hoping happens...

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Must admit this was one of the few things that I didn't like the look of. It may turn out brilliantly though. There must have been some reason for it and that reason had to pass several creative people to get into play. It won't have been just one person saying "this'll be cool", several teams will have green lit it, so I'll reserve full judgement for the moment.

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We're narrating to the tadpole.

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Originally Posted by Gmazca
I am convinced that what we saw was prologue. The player character is recounting events to a third-party and eventually we will catch up to that point in the narrative and will play out the rest of the game in present tense. At least, that is what I'm hoping happens...


You mean its similar to Final Fantasy X?
The first scene of the game is a point very late in the game, then you play the story from the beginning up to that point and every now and then the main char makes comments from the off about the things that happened then.

arbitrary example:
In one scene the main char tells another char: "Don´t worry, everything will be OK."
And then comes the off comment: "Of course it did not. It never does. But we would learn this lessen soon enough."

Last edited by Madscientist; 05/03/20 06:35 PM.

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Originally Posted by Dark_Ansem
We're narrating to the tadpole.

I don't see why we would be narrating to the tadpole since what we're narrating is post tadpole being implanted.

Last edited by BeNexus; 05/03/20 06:50 PM. Reason: Fixed grammatical errors
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Originally Posted by Madscientist
Originally Posted by Gmazca
I am convinced that what we saw was prologue. The player character is recounting events to a third-party and eventually we will catch up to that point in the narrative and will play out the rest of the game in present tense. At least, that is what I'm hoping happens...


You mean its similar to Final Fantasy X?
The first scene of the game is a point very late in the game, then you play the story from the beginning up to that point and every now and then the main char makes comments from the off about the things that happened then.

arbitrary example:
In one scene the main char tells another char: "Don´t worry, everything will be OK."
And then comes the off comment: "Of course it did not. It never does. But we would learn this lessen soon enough."


That's a perfect example, though I hope it doesn't wait as long to get to the present tense.

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Originally Posted by Waeress
RPS asked about it, and according to them it seemed to be a reason for it:

"Matthew did actually ask about it (Swen said he was the only person to ask). If memory serves Swen said something about it being almost like the character is telling a story to someone, but don’t nail me to the wall because I don’t have the interview audio right now."

"Yeah, Swen seemed to suggest it might have a mysterious relevance – he ducked the question and smiled enigmatically. I wondered if it might be the mind tadpole inside your head trying to ‘write your story’ or something."

source: comments section on
https://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2020/02/27/baldurs-gate-3-is-nearly-here/#comments


This is what I was hoping for.

My thought was that, yes, for some reason the character you are playing is telling a story to someone else and it would be cleared up later.
It seems to be a really odd way of having dialogue if it's not that.

Thank you for finding this obscure comment

Originally Posted by Gmazca
I am convinced that what we saw was prologue. The player character is recounting events to a third-party and eventually we will catch up to that point in the narrative and will play out the rest of the game in present tense. At least, that is what I'm hoping happens...


Exactly what I was thinking

Last edited by Cirolle; 05/03/20 07:20 PM.
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Thanks for replies! Special thanks to @Waeress. Would never thought to look among comments for valuable information smile

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Thank you from my side, too, here. I was a bit "put off" by the past tense, too. But if this is part of the plot: YAY!!


Larian, please improve QoL / UX.

And give us Halsin as companion, please.
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Agreed. This was such a strange decision I can't help but think it's for a specific reason. Still don't like it, though. It creates a very large gap between the player and what's happening, so I'm not sure if it's worth the nifty twist they want to pull off.

Also, your example isn't past tense, it's the character speaking in present tense, telling the other about the past.

Last edited by Ratherz; 06/03/20 12:02 AM.
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something is till dont get.

The past tense is what gets me. and the * just look out of place and reminds me of old IRC chat roleplaying

i get that the point was that you imagine what your character would say, but eh, i dont think it works

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Originally Posted by Sordak
something is till dont get.

The past tense is what gets me. and the * just look out of place and reminds me of old IRC chat roleplaying

i get that the point was that you imagine what your character would say, but eh, i dont think it works


The * is actually one of my favourite things, similar to the ME dialogue wheel

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About month ago Josh Sawyer from Obsidian has done an online lecture Reputation Overload - The Evolution of RPG Reputation Mechanics.

In the comment section Marat Sar, dev of recent indie RPG darlin' Disco Elysium, might have revealed something new about BG3. When discussing potential adaptation of DE ideas into other RPGs he said this:
[Linked Image]

That would explain past tense, though it still might feel really werid to me, if its used for a big chunk, or the whole game.

Any RPG taking a look at what Disco did, and adapting some of the ideas is a good thing, as far as I am concerned. They've done some really neat things there.

Last edited by Wormerine; 09/05/20 02:38 PM.

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