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Originally Posted by Topgoon
The reality is, BG3 is too large of a project for them to purely prioritize a "perfect CRPG experience"

Given the budget of the game, they'll need to appeal to an equally large audience to make this work. Roughly guessing, the audience breakdown:

  • CRPG Enthusiasts (including original BG1/2 players)
  • 5E Table Top Enthusiasts who might try a videogame
  • Returning DOS 2 Players
  • More "mainstream" RPG players (Witcher 3, Mass Effect, Fallout 4, Skyrim players)


I'd argue that the last 2 are likely the biggest markets/opportunities, hence the focus on cinematics. There's a reason why they've made so many adjustments to the rules too (instead of just applying them as written, which is FAR easier and simpler). Hence why you see surface areas, etc.

Does this mean the game is better for it? Not necessarily, but I do understand the business decision behind a lot of their choices.


I understand all that, but it's still disappointing. The game is pretty much marketed towards the first two groups and made for the last two. It's like dangling a piece of meat in front of one dog and then throwing it to another. And then not getting why the first dog is mad at you.

I wouldn't mind cinematics (and I mostly don't, I'm quite neutral on the subject), but high production values work against writing. If everything needs to be voiced and mocapped, tweaking something or adding more lines becomes much more of a problem. I'd rather take a plethora of text-only dialogue options than a handful of fully acted ones.

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Originally Posted by Frumpkis
I agree they could cut most of the one-liner "flavor" NPC cinematics and just use voice response.

It's possible we're getting so many non-consequential NPC scenes because Larian has an easy, automated way to do that. They're doing it because they can? It does break the flow of the game without really adding anything.

It's amazing how many things Larian does simply because they can


Larian's Biggest Oversight, what to do about it, and My personal review of BG3 EA
"74.85% of you stood with the Tieflings, and 25.15% of you sided with Minthara. Good outweighs evil, it seems."
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Originally Posted by Uncle Lester
Originally Posted by Topgoon
The reality is, BG3 is too large of a project for them to purely prioritize a "perfect CRPG experience"

Given the budget of the game, they'll need to appeal to an equally large audience to make this work. Roughly guessing, the audience breakdown:

  • CRPG Enthusiasts (including original BG1/2 players)
  • 5E Table Top Enthusiasts who might try a videogame
  • Returning DOS 2 Players
  • More "mainstream" RPG players (Witcher 3, Mass Effect, Fallout 4, Skyrim players)


I'd argue that the last 2 are likely the biggest markets/opportunities, hence the focus on cinematics. There's a reason why they've made so many adjustments to the rules too (instead of just applying them as written, which is FAR easier and simpler). Hence why you see surface areas, etc.

Does this mean the game is better for it? Not necessarily, but I do understand the business decision behind a lot of their choices.


I understand all that, but it's still disappointing. The game is pretty much marketed towards the first two groups and made for the last two. It's like dangling a piece of meat in front of one dog and then throwing it to another. And then not getting why the first dog is mad at you.

I wouldn't mind cinematics (and I mostly don't, I'm quite neutral on the subject), but high production values work against writing. If everything needs to be voiced and mocapped, tweaking something or adding more lines becomes much more of a problem. I'd rather take a plethora of text-only dialogue options than a handful of fully acted ones.


There are not so many RPG enthusiasts, judging by the sale of other games of this type.
As for 5e enthusiasts, I don't blame anyone for not having faith in them. The vast majority of these people probably won't even buy the game.
Nowadays, if you want to make high-budget games, you have to make them as affordable.
Let's be honest, I'm pretty sure the main goal of the WotC is to attract new people to D&D.



Last edited by Rhobar121; 31/10/20 07:22 PM.
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Originally Posted by Rhobar121


There are not so many RPG enthusiasts, judging by the sale of other games of this type.



Agreed. And the indie-game market has served that niche very well - within that niche market, those indie studios command just as much, if not more, brand power as Larian.

Just look at the excitement and praise heaped at Wrath of the Righteous (CRPG enthusiast) and Solasta (5e enthusiast) - why would Larian go compete where niche, established competitors are? The best way for a company like Larian to succeed to to build on the momentum it created with DOS 1 and 2 and continue to scale larger.

Let's also be honest, speaking as a CRPG enthusiast myself, we're probably one of the most notoriously vocal, hard-to-please, snobby type of gamers lol who ultimately won't pay any more for the game than random gamer #868.

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Originally Posted by Topgoon
Originally Posted by Rhobar121


There are not so many RPG enthusiasts, judging by the sale of other games of this type.



Agreed. And the indie-game market has served that niche very well - within that niche market, those indie studios command just as much, if not more, brand power as Larian.

Just look at the excitement and praise heaped at Wrath of the Righteous (CRPG enthusiast) and Solasta (5e enthusiast) - why would Larian go compete where niche, established competitors are? The best way for a company like Larian to succeed to to build on the momentum it created with DOS 1 and 2 and continue to scale larger.

Let's also be honest, speaking as a CRPG enthusiast myself, we're probably one of the most notoriously vocal, hard-to-please, snobby type of gamers lol who ultimately won't pay any more for the game than random gamer #868.







I think the interesting point here is that until relatively recently, Larian was part of the niche market, but now they are suddenly in the big league.


Larian's Biggest Oversight, what to do about it, and My personal review of BG3 EA
"74.85% of you stood with the Tieflings, and 25.15% of you sided with Minthara. Good outweighs evil, it seems."
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Originally Posted by Abits
I think the interesting point here is that until relatively recently, Larian was part of the niche market, but now they are suddenly in the big league.


I'd say yes and no. They don't have a "hardcore old-school" cRPG in their portfolio. They've gone through Diablo-likes, TPP action RPG, bizzarre RPG-RTS hybrid... Original Sin games are cRPGs, but from what I understand, they are very modern and casual-friendly. Their success is probably the combination of cRPG fans getting something and Larian bringing a new genre to a broader audience. They weren't big league before that breakthrough, but I wouldn't call them "niche" at any point (depending on one's definition of niche).

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I like cinematics as much as anyone, and the prologue cinematic is truly beautiful, but still, I'm here for the gameplay not a movie.

They'd be great if they didn't cost so much to produce, or if everything else in the game didn't seems to suffer when so many of the dev zots have to go into video game film making.

Just reading through the fixes in the last patch #10 (which included some great fixes) it was pretty clear that they really wanted to show off the "reshoots" from the cinematics team as a thing I'm supposed to get excited about. Alas, that's really not what I'm here for.

I'd rather they just used whatever in-game cameras and animations are actually available to the player (the stuff you are likely to encounter in regular play) instead of separate camera tracking and animations built out purely for cut scenes.

I'd rather they be scenes without a cut, if that makes sense. This is how almost everything was handled in BG1/2. With the exception of the game launch Intro and Chapter break cutscenes, dialogue scenes even with voice over were delivered without recourse to a whole separate system for more detailed and elaborate animations simply for the cutscenes.

They're cool for major story beats and the initial story set up, but I just think its being overused. Not to knock their cinematography team, they've been doing great work obviously. But if I had to choose between someone getting paid to "reshoot" a cut scene, or paying someone to improve or unlock the player's actual in-game camera, I'd choose the later every time. Or again if I had to choose between reskinning or re-lighting some random NPC in a cutscene dialogue, or improving the PC animations during actual gameplay, its no contest there again. I'd prefer they focus on stuff the player can play with.

Every time I see a placeholder for a cinematic that is still "pending" my first thought is invariably, 'why not just cut it out completely and focus on something that involves active gameplay rather than a passive viewing experience?'

Oh well, its an old lament by now I suppose, the way the winds have been blowing. Its just unfortunate that more and more zots have to go into movie magic and making sure the lips all sync, when it puts so many limits on other things that are much more interesting to me in a game.

Last edited by Black_Elk; 31/10/20 09:42 PM.
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Originally Posted by Topgoon
The reality is, BG3 is too large of a project for them to purely prioritize a "perfect CRPG experience"

Given the budget of the game, they'll need to appeal to an equally large audience to make this work. Roughly guessing, the audience breakdown:

  • CRPG Enthusiasts (including original BG1/2 players)
  • 5E Table Top Enthusiasts who might try a videogame
  • Returning DOS 2 Players
  • More "mainstream" RPG players (Witcher 3, Mass Effect, Fallout 4, Skyrim players)


I'd argue that the last 2 are likely the biggest markets/opportunities, hence the focus on cinematics. There's a reason why they've made so many adjustments to the rules too (instead of just applying them as written, which is FAR easier and simpler). Hence why you see surface areas, etc.

Does this mean the game is better for it? Not necessarily, but I do understand the business decision behind a lot of their choices.


Pretty much this.
I actually am not too fond of everything being cinematics either, it does make sense with a lot of interactions tho.
But it's the same with voice acting, I think that voice acting does change the writing and simplify it more because voice actors have to voice so much ( remember that things aren't just done in a single take ). I prefer it if it's not voiced and the dialogue is more extensive and I like to just read things as I imagine it in my own head both with descriptions and characters.
Especially with protagonists, I feel like the voice acting usually contradicts how I imagine my own character and is very limiting.
And don't get me started on the dreaded dialogue wheel popularized by Bioware lol.

With that said tho, it does make sense from a mass market appeal pov.
I also think that people need to remember also that DnD as in the tabletop is extremely niche.
There was an uptick in interest because of Critical Role but there's a difference between watching celebrities play DnD with super high production value etc and actually playing it yourself, most people just tried it and were all like '' wait a minute, this is just a game for math nerds '' and got bored real fast.
The actual tabletop game itself is never going to be mainstream, even if interest in the lore itself may increase.

When it comes to video games it's easier to reach a mass market but you also do have to sacrifice a lot of the tabletop elements.
I do understand purists being disappointed about it, I hate a lot of the trends in video games and the obsession with '' mainstream appeal ''. I do think that it compromises the art and makes for less diverse games but from a business standpoint it does make sense.

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I think there are lots of ways to get a hook in. The books and fantasy paintings, other materials like pewter figurines or frazetta type trading cards. Even when people don't have a table or a dm.

The appeal of D&D and the Forgotten Realms is its own thing, expansive and at least as much text or 2d oriented as it is about the stuff with the time signatures that people are still willing to pay actual money for... Music and Video Animations basically.

I'm in it as much for the art love as anything. I think they could use more modelers and peeps painting skins and wowing me with all the killer equipment and characterization options on offer. UI flavor.

I'd like to see the entire Monsters Manual play during splash load screens. Useful hints and Information from the Players Handbook or the DMG, Legends and Lore, the Book of Artifacts, Manual of the Planes etc. There's a goldmine to be had hehe.

Now I'm drifting but the game could do a lot with 2d and text based assets which would excite me as much as animation and VA. I like the voice acting especially, just not for Charname. But I'd wish for more 3d models, and core animations for the PCs focus rather than cutscene drama.

More dynamic camera control for the user so they can set their own scene. And have voiced dialogue delivered in game, rather than cut to scene. Concentrate on PC animations more than dynamic NPC line delivery.

The less its built around cinematics and the more the cinematics are just built into the regular game the more adaptive it will be. I hope they get a BG4 out of this one. Or maybe a whole FR campaign series setting with Icewind Dale and Neverwinter like last time. I'd sign up for IIIs across the board hehe

There's loot to be had, if they build it people will show out. The official branding is its own kind of draw



Last edited by Black_Elk; 01/11/20 07:36 AM.
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Moving a camera down to do an in game "cutscene" of a conversation is harmless and takes very little away from other tasks of game development. Making a scripted cinematic with higher quality textures and different rendering than regular game play graphics is more time consuming and can detract from the regular flow of the game if the player is forced to watch too many of those, like hideo kojima games with the hours of in game movies interrupting play.

The cutscenes in this game were, the intro, maybe you would consider us falling down out of the ship, and possibly the first fight at the druid camp gates. At the end there is "conclusion" cutscene to tie up the story so far. Those are logically placed and help enhance the story telling.

The conversation cut scenes help bring "character" to the characters, by showing their faces and emotions as they talk. If we stay in max distance isometric/overhead view and just had voices these characters could be any generic humanoid, but putting a face to them helps bring unique traits and qualities out in them. Asking to get rid of that would mean we are surrounded with throw away NPCs who don't matter.

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Isn't that kind of the point though, when most of these NPCs are throw aways who don't matter? Lol

Why go all shot/countershot with one liners? Its just showcasing lip sync bugs and eyeline continuity fails right now.

I mean if they're characters then insert some character by all means. If we get a dialogue option to respond or a clutch rumor branch out of it great, but right now its a click tease for another reverse shot bobble head, pulling a MiIlie Vanilli on us half the time. I guess they have EA to clean it up, I just wish the energy would be spent on other things that I find more engaging.

If a dialogue close up view was something that we could actually control by choosing a driving cam that would be way cool. I'm still more interested in zooming out than zooming in though. The base animations already look pretty fantastic, its the cinema zoom where it starts to hiccup all over the place. Just judging from all the lip syncs fails and weird convo camera angles we've seen so far its clear they're going to be hours back in the editing room trying to clean up the cuts. Even for the important conversations that actually drive the story and offer quests where the cinematic view makes more sense there are tons of kinks. Like when a convo triggers with an NPC at a different elevation than the PC, cam goes instantly schizo. Its like they're definitely trying to track the PCs location so the NPC can meet the gaze, but it goes totally haywire if there is any height difference at all, let alone talking as a shorty. Its not terribly immersion breaking when it works, but the fact that it isn't working so often to me signals that it might be better for them to rely on it less.

I think they should work on emoting VA lines more through body language animations as if it were a stage play, rather than with facial expression like the cinema close up. The former would work better for the standard wide angle iso view they're employing for everything else.

Last edited by Black_Elk; 01/11/20 10:35 AM.
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Originally Posted by Black_Elk
Isn't that kind of the point though, when most of these NPCs are throw aways who don't matter? Lol

Why go all shot/countershot with one liners? Its just showcasing lip sync bugs and eyeline continuity fails right now.

I mean if they're characters then insert some character by all means. If we get a dialogue option to respond or a clutch rumor branch out of it great, but right now its a click tease for another reverse shot bobble head, pulling a MiIlie Vanilli on us half the time. I guess they have EA to clean it up, I just wish the energy would be spent on other things that I find more engaging.

If a dialogue close up view was something that we could actually control by choosing a driving cam that would be way cool. I'm still more interested in zooming out than zooming in though. The base animations already look pretty fantastic, its the cinema zoom where it starts to hiccup all over the place. Just judging from all the lip syncs fails and weird convo camera angles we've seen so far its clear they're going to be hours back in the editing room trying to clean up the cuts. Even for the important conversations that actually drive the story and offer quests where the cinematic view makes more sense there are tons of kinks. Like when a convo triggers with an NPC at a different elevation than the PC, cam goes instantly schizo. Its like they're definitely trying to track the PCs location so the NPC can meet the gaze, but it goes totally haywire if there is any height difference at all, let alone talking as a shorty. Its not terribly immersion breaking when it works, but the fact that it isn't working so often to me signals that it might be better for them to rely on it less.

I think they should work on emoting VA lines more through body language animations as if it were a stage play, rather than with facial expression like the cinema close up. The former would work better for the standard wide angle iso view they're employing for everything else.

It's plain and simple bad game design. I don't remember any game who did it and for good reason.


Larian's Biggest Oversight, what to do about it, and My personal review of BG3 EA
"74.85% of you stood with the Tieflings, and 25.15% of you sided with Minthara. Good outweighs evil, it seems."
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I love the cinematics actually, those that have been polished, like the one at the start in the ship when you find "US" screaming "free us" and the body twitches, and the character is visibly surprised, that's REALLY nice!! it really adds to the general mood and helps with the storytelling and immersion. However, since in the current state of EA most of the cinematics are HEAVILY bugged, to the point where its either frustrating or comical and completely break immersion.... they really don't add much right now in their curent state, and yes could easily be glossed over and just replaced with the voiceover until the animations are fixed... but oh will this be an amazing dramatic cinematic experience to play through this game once all the animations are polished!!! I can't wait!

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I'm not sure why are we even wasting time indulging in this discussion as if there was even a remote 0,1 % chance that Larian would ACTUALLY throw out of the window all the work done so far because some forum grognard dislikes production value and finds it "wasteful".


Party control in Baldur's Gate 3 is a complete mess that begs to be addressed. SAY NO TO THE TOILET CHAIN
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Insert Old Man Yells At Cloud meme.

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Originally Posted by Tuco
I'm not sure why are we even wasting time indulging in this discussion as if there was even a remote 0,1 % chance that Larian would ACTUALLY throw out of the window all the work done so far because some forum grognard dislikes production value and finds it "wasteful".

Looks like you like to wast your time in threads you don't like! ;p

Seriously, the OP may be a little excessive.
But the question seems right.
Is it really necessary to have cinematics for all the NPCs we met ?
It's nice feature but it's also a lot of time and ressources spent for something which is maybe not crucial for every NPCs.

Who really need to see the face of some merchants of randoms peasants ?
Making a choice no could save a lot of time and work for Larian so they could use it for something else.

Just saying, just asking.

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Nah keep the cinematics, they're awesome and keep me more immersed. Plus you can just skip dialog, a one liner npc takes less than 3 seconds to get through?


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One-liners with cinematic is completely unnecessary.

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I love the cinematics for all the NPCs, it makes the game unique among all isometric CRPGs. Very immersive.

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Originally Posted by Zefhyr
Looks like you like to wast your time in threads you don't like! ;p

It's almost as if I cared about the future of the game, and so about keeping the public discourse focused on what's actually obtainable.

And given that my government just shut down my professional activity (boxing gym) for the next whole month (if I'm lucky) I admittedly have plenty of spare time for the next weeks.

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But the question seems right.

The "question" is not even a question but an impractical, unattainable suggestion.
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Is it really necessary to have cinematics for all the NPCs we met ?

Why not? Given that they seem to have the system in place to automate a lot of it and it gives TONS of personality even to minor characters.
It doesn't even seems like it's coming at expenses of variety, either. I played with human, tiefling and drow and at times the amount of small differences was staggering, it felt almost like the a different story.


Last edited by Tuco; 04/11/20 05:34 PM.

Party control in Baldur's Gate 3 is a complete mess that begs to be addressed. SAY NO TO THE TOILET CHAIN
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