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I wanted to bring this topic up about custom characters and how they fit in the story due to their also being "Origin" stories and how much effort and resources get put in them by Larian. One of the biggest flaws of OS2 was that custom characters were lifeless and didn't fit in at all. I don't want that problem again, and because of this I wanted to talk about this. Now, as it stands, the custom characters don't really...have a story. Like why are they an adventurer, what were they doing in Baldur's Gate or wherever they were kidnapped before that happen? If you look at some of the recent CRPGs, even the most blank main character have some back story to them to keep them tethered to the world. Pillars had the main character going to a city, and in dialogue you get to pick "WHY" you're going there. Bc you're a mercenary, ur running away, etc. So far I haven't had that chance to do that in a convo with my main character in BG3. In Pathfinder you're a mercenary who ended up on this adventure because you answered the call to go to the Stolen Lands. Even going far back to fallout and NV where you were the courier and got shot (NV not the best example bc its not a CRPG, but it is a damn good RPG nonetheless).

Now I use those games an example because they are amazing RPG's with their custom main characters, but they still feel like they belong in the world because they were doing SOMETHING before the game starts. Before the grand adventure happens. But in OS2, Larians previous game that wasn't the case. You were just on a ship and best I can remember there was never a hint to how you got there or anything. Not even like a selection of dialogue like Pillars 1. You just magically appeared and it's the same here as far as I can tell. You're just...some guy that appeared on the ship and can do stuff. Nothing keeping you in this world. I wanted to bring this to attention to maybe have a discussion on how other's feel about this.

Thoughts? Maybe you like how it is, dislike it, anything? My hope is that if enough people agree then MAYBE Larian can add this or do some change to make custom NPC's better instead of focusing so much on Premade characters in a D&D game (might be a bit too hopeful to think they'll change, but eh). But yeah, thoughts?!

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I defintely want the custom PC to have more to their story than they currently do. I've headcanoned a whole background for my PC but I know that doesn't come easy to everyone nor should headcanon be the only tool available for making you feel like you're playing a fleshed out character. I for one really do not like the idea that every character around you has this rich backstory and you're left as an undefined blank whose background is the bare minimum implied by your race and class. Even having a conversation like in PoE1(which I loved tha they let you do) would go a great distance to fixing the problem. It's why I'm honestly low key resentful of the origin character concept; it just feels unsatisfying to think that your character won't end up having their own story beyond the plot of the game yet you have at minimum five other options that will let you explore their own personal quests AND the story of the game.

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They won't because of their concept of origin characters.
Origin characters HAVE to have the same story as custom characters.... But they can also have side story.

That's Impossible with custom except if they create many specific quest related to a class/race/pre-defined background. That would mean create something like 5 to 10 "origin stories" only for custom character, which is impossible.

They bring this absolutely bad concept from DoS into BG and just because of it... Custom characters still won't have any specific background or story.

This concept is absolutely bad as soon as you're talking about custom character and it will always be.

Last edited by Maximuuus; 10/10/20 07:00 AM.
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Originally Posted by Maximuuus
They won't because of their concept of origin characters.
Origin characters HAVE to have the same story as custom characters.... But they can also have side story.

That's Impossible with custom except if they create many specific quest related to a class/race/pre-defined background. That would mean create something like 5 to 10 "origin stories" only for custom character, which is impossible.

They bring this absolutely bad concept from DoS into BG and just because of it... Custom characters still won't have any specific background or story.

This concept is absolutely evil as soon as you're talking about custom character and it will always be.


Yeah, im not a fan of Origin, I never will be because of various reasons, but I don't even mean having Origin stories like Dragon Age Origins, I know that'a fantasy because that is a tall order. But literally ANYTHING would be better. A single story, like they were doing SOMETHING there, or atleast some mandatory NPC you come across that asks you about your life and you can tell them what you were doing before this like they do in Pillars 1, because that is better then nothing imo.

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It's not origin characters themselves that I don't like, it's that if they're going to have them then Larian should be up front about it. Just say "hey, you're going to have a more immersive experience playing as an Origin character, that is what we designed to give you the best experience, but if you want to roleplay a blank slate then that's an option too." Right now it feels likt they want to say the Origin's are bonuses, but that doesn't really hold water when you get more origins and each origin has a unique experience you can't get with a custom character.

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Originally Posted by Gray Ghost
It's not origin characters themselves that I don't like, it's that if they're going to have them then Larian should be up front about it. Just say "hey, you're going to have a more immersive experience playing as an Origin character, that is what we designed to give you the best experience, but if you want to roleplay a blank slate then that's an option too." Right now it feels likt they want to say the Origin's are bonuses, but that doesn't really hold water when you get more origins and each origin has a unique experience you can't get with a custom character.


Oh no, I get you, my bad.

Me personally I can't stand them, the concept of them ticks me off because they come at a cost. A company doesn't have infinite resources, and the resources that went into making their story in "first person" to make them all playable could have gone towards Custom character, thats how i see it. The origins come with their own dialogue, quests, but that's not the main thing that bothers me, its the fact that they feel like they belong in the world.

Custom characters don't. That was an issue in OS2 and its the same here, like...why was i there when i got abducted? It's like my character appears out of thin air, they have no story until the game starts, compare that to every other CRPG where even the most "blank" character has atleast something to make them feel like they used to be of this world.

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Exactly, and that's my point; if Larian is going to devote the majority of their resources to the custom characters, then their advertising of the game should reflect that. Let players know that it's a game where you play as one of a selection of pre-made characters OR a blank slate character you make yourself that has no real story before the start of the game. In contrast look at Dragon Age: Inquisition. You don't play out your background in that game, but you get a whole line of off screen inquisition missions that involve people from your backstory and you get numerous opportunities to talk with your companions about your past. Something like that for BG3 would be amazing.

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A simple conversation about who you are and what you were up to pre-abduction would be easy, with choices based on your chosen origin. Even better if your party comments on it now and again. "Come far for a street rat, haven't you?"

I don't have any interest in ever playing an origin character. I didn't in D:OS2 and I very much doubt I will here. Some more about "me" would be nice and it doesn't need to be a lot.

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I love the Witcher series, playing Geralt...

BUT give me a game where I can create my own character and I absolutely will, because in an RPG game where i can be who I want to be then that is the most important thing to me.

So yes, absolutely yes to MORE options for custom characters when it comes to story. I may well play an origin character at some point, but my main play throughs will always be with my character!

The issue is also the whole thing becomes exacerbated when you play multiplayer with people who also want custom characters. Yes we can role play over a mic or whatever but the interaction with the world loses something.

Even Witcher 3 had this quality questionnaire scene asking you how you played events in the previous game in order to know how you impacted the world. Yes I know BG3 isn’t a direct sequel, so that doesn’t work here but my point is that CDPR wanted you to at least define the world in W3 based upon how you played W2 so that it was still “your Geralt”.


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I want to be able to choose a region/city to be from the beginning which would have conversation effects. I really enjoy the shout outs to all the different regions of Faerun that you usually don't get in most Forgotten Realms games. Rashemi for example. I would love to make a Red Wizard of Thay or a Calamshite Rogue and even a Halruuan Wizard.

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Dialogues about our character's past is my favorite idea so far. This could be extended based on the backgrounds we choose in the character creator. There could be more backgrounds themselves and they could have a short but detailed description (like in Aurora, a character creation program for D&D sessions).

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I started a character who in my headcanon was a human, baldurian, lawful good cleric of helm. I've gotten specific options referring to all these tags and absolutely want to be able to play more exotic characters the same way.

Speaking with Astarion of Baldurs gate, Gale of being human, many conversations on religion because of cleric (other stuff as well from "lawful priest" tag).

My favourite was I've actually gotten to say prayers dedicated to Helm and characters respond with unique lines regarding him and his clergy!

This is great for fleshing out one's own roleplaying and I hope other backgrounds like Thay, Rashemen, Calimshan, Icewind dale and even Planescape backgrounds for those of us so inclined will be implemented in subtle ways.

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And the small dialogue section about it doesn't seem like a big idea to implement either. I do hope Adam or some other writer looks into Custom characters to improve them.

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I'm playing a drow and so far I've gotten a couple fun references to it. I haven't made it to the Underdark yet but I'm excited to see how things go down there. Also as an aside, I'm playing a female Seladrine drow ranger who I headcanon as being a bounty hunter who specialized in hunting down and killing Lolth-sworn drow.

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Yeah, I started as a drow and THEY got way more reactivity and dialogue then a tiefling did (havent gotten that far with either so maybe it changes for tiefling), but for me it still doesn't change that my char just appears on the ship and doesn't answer as to what we were doing prior to this "invasion".

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+1 to all this.

I did my first play through as a half-elf and felt very disconnected from my origin.

Did a playthrough as a Drow and the game made much more reference to that backstory.

Honestly, the dream would be a full on origin story a la Dragon Age Origins, though I understand it's inefficient. The minimum should be the Pillars of Eternity early conversation laying things out. It wouldn't be hard to do as part of the "Who are You" character creation. The Tadpole asking you questions and such.

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The lack of character backstory will feel really odd once the full game releases and we can enter Baldur's Gate. Unless you're playing a drow or githyanki, that's supposed to be your home city - a place where your pre-tadpole identity should matter as much as what you've done throughout the game. Ideally, there'd be NPCs who already know you, organizations who'd be more willing to help you on quests, and the general sense that you existed before the mind flayers scooped you up. I know this would mean limiting our characters to a handful of backstory choices, but I'd be more than happy with the tradeoff.

Last edited by Alcies; 10/10/20 07:51 PM.
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Originally Posted by Arthellion

Honestly, the dream would be a full on origin story a la Dragon Age Origins, though I understand it's inefficient. The minimum should be the Pillars of Eternity early conversation laying things out. It wouldn't be hard to do as part of the "Who are You" character creation. The Tadpole asking you questions and such.


Yes, exactly. Tadpole could be one way, probing the character's mind for some background choices. There's even some background options in the D&D Player's Handbook that could be incorporated: personality trait, ideal, bond, flaw. And Pillars style dialogue where party members ask a few questions relating to your chosen background would work quite well and it'd be relatively easy to add. Even if the answers are not used anywhere, this would give the custom player character a much better sense of identity and history.

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The tadpole asking is a good idea.

Hell it would help if the background (the actual background options) had some dialogue. Like you picking Noble and then Astarion like "oh we must move in different circles" like...what? Why is there no Noble option to counter that?

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I agree there is a real lack of flesh in the custom character. You don't feel like you are a part of the world like the Origin ones.
I won't play with an origin character ever, for me they are just good npcs. I loved playing with Viconia, Aerie, Minsc etc.. but i wouldn't have played any of them as main char. So sad Larian put so many ressources into Origin char instead of custom -a bad thing herited from DOS2 - but i hope they'll correct it for the full release.. Anyway

I LOVED Dragon Age Origin origin's stories and the impact each had on the game. That's the dream I guess. It's probably too late for them to implement this kind of prequel to the game.. Even just quick scenes maybe as flashbacks during sleep at the beginning ?
If not that, at least a conversation with a npc/tadpole would be a nice thing to add. But if it had no impact in dialogues options that would be sad.

But also, it would be great to meet people your custom character knew from their past. A good thing to add to the immersion feeling...

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