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Great for you, I don't find his category to be all that interesting. smile

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Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by Ragitsu
When people try to tear down the classics in defense of BG3,
More importantly, that doesn't invalidate the criticism.

Thus far, I have seen a few forum members take a trio of eccentric characters from the original Baldur's Gate titles (i.e., Minsc, Tiax and Jan Jansen) and inflate their presence across those games in an attempt to portray each entry as cartoonish on a level comparable to that of Larian's offering. I consider that hilarious...but not in the intended fashion. The "c" word is unwarranted.

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Originally Posted by IrenicusBG3
Intellectually, he knows that he loves his sister, but his emotional capacity to do so has been removed. Intellectually he knows that he probably still loves Ellesime, but he is not capable of love, and his condition has eaten away even his memories of what it was like to love. He still remembers it as a concept, much like one might remember having learned to ride a bicycle or flying for the first time at some specific point in one's life without actually remembering what it was like.

And with his ability to feel destroyed and his memory of his life as an elf badly deteriorated he has become the monster they punished him for being previously. He didn't set out to be a monster initially, but now that he has become one anyway, why exactly should he not pursue his old goal? Why should he care about torturing some shadow thieves or a couple of bhaalspawn? "The law" means nothing to him and his conscience has been taken away with his soul. What is left for him but to seek power for the sake of power, and maybe settle some scores along the way?

Really great analysis. And there are layers to the story as well. That's the story from Irenicus' positions but we very briefly learn that there is another side to story. Bodhi encouraged his ambitions and he tried to take over the tree to become a god even before the removal of his soul. He's so busy blaming Elliseme and Elean (sp?) for his misery, so convinced that the way to undo the curse is through magical mastery that he's blind to the path Elliseme wanted him to follow, redemption through acts of goodness and compensation.

So he was actually evil before but becomes a very different type of evil after the loss of his soul. Cold, calculating and driven by desire to feel something again.

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Originally Posted by Alyssa_Fox
All I saw was a creepy objectification of a woman and a desire to own her, not love.

That is the intentional representation of his character. How the love he once had became a twisted obsession. And, at the same time, his struggle. We see Irenicus at the end of his character arc, where he is desperate to obtain the PC's soul to replace his, and his sanity is irreversibly gone.

Originally Posted by Alyssa_Fox
I actually prefer realistic villians with motivation that complements their nuanced worldview, Master and Kerghan are good examples, and so are Illusive Man from ME, Kreia from KOTOR2, Caesar from Fallout New Vegas.

I don't know how the Master is realistic, since he is parody in himself. Kerghan also starts as someone craving for power, then desiring immortality through necromancy and ends finding peace in the void and realizing that life is suffering; can't say that is original. Ceasar has some interesting beats, but again he is parody, not realistic. All simple ideas and what matters at the end of the day is the delivery. And Irenicus' delivery is a quite powerful.

The Tim Cain approach of making villain suddenly change the plans they put together for centuries at the last minute with some dialogue is an interesting game mechanic but rather unrealistic I would say.

Originally Posted by Alyssa_Fox
First of all, he literally says he is waiting for Halsin to return and also is somewhat resigned to his fate, considering how overwhelming the recent events were for him.
Sure, waiting days for a single option sounds reasonable. Overwhelming for him? lol.

Originally Posted by Dexai
Sure, Irenicus (the forum poster) is in my opinion completely inflating Irenicus' (the character) complexity.

I am not inflating, all that I said is in the game and is not even an interpretation, it is quite explicit (examples included pages ago). He does have cliches lines for the public, as all villains listed here also do, and that is ok, it does not take away the depth of the character.

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Originally Posted by ash elemental
Originally Posted by 1varangian
If movies and games could be everything, genres wouldn't exist. I'm getting an increasing feeling that BG3 doesn't know what it wants to be and who it's made for.

The reveal trailer introduced us into gruesome body horror which set the mood. And it was great! It was very BG, it was dark and mature as it should be.
The BG saga was not all dark and mature as you portray it. It had some very silly, genre skipping moments too. Remember the woodsman making dark cavern jokes in BG1? It was a reference to, ahem, adult movies actor.


+1

Also, if talking to squirrels were likely to annoy me, I just wouldn't (except in situations where the conversation is likely to be plot-important). I'd regularly prefer a little less edginess in games, but understand that it's often there because it adds to the experience for people who aren't me. In my opinion if folks want AAA amenities, they need to accept that games will need to appeal to folks whose tastes differ from theirs, as well as provide features that they themselves enjoy. The more niche the audience, the more niche the budget has to be.

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Originally Posted by Imryll
In my opinion if folks want AAA amenities, they need to accept that games will need to appeal to folks whose tastes differ from theirs

AKA "The lowest common denominator".

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Originally Posted by Imryll
The more niche the audience, the more niche the budget has to be.
Yes, because Bioware just didn't know how to appeal to mass audience... smile

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Originally Posted by robertthebard
Because this is the General Discussion forum, maybe? I mean, it's what this forum is for, discussing things about the game. The better question is, why are you so bothered that I disagree with your assessment? .

Feel free to disagree as much as you want. These are all opinions or matters of taste and there's no right or wrong. You probably don't see how abrasive you come across?

Originally Posted by robertthebard
Reading through the things you post, I can see a lot of approval fishing,

Originally Posted by robertthebard
I can't do anything about your failure to understand

Originally Posted by robertthebard
Perhaps I feel that your stated position isn't of much use to anyone

Originally Posted by robertthebard
you don't understand what "General Discussion" means

etc... just unnecessary.

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Just finished replaying BG2 EE, so this is pretty fresh in my mind. Conceptually, Irenicus is a pretty interesting character, but I do feel like BG2 actually failed to take advantage of that potential.

The environmental storytelling in the BG2 prologue is quite brilliant, and really paints a picture of a deeper Irenicus with a far more interesting motivation. I always loved how the preserved bedroom and the captured Dryads shows the sad but twisted methods and experimentation that Irenicus used to try to recover what was lost to him (the ability to feel). There's something tragic about that - a soulless being desperately trying to cling onto his humanity (or elvenity?). But that tragic motivation is never again really explored, getting only a quick final mention during the Tree of Life encounter.

The Jon Irenicus that we actually get on screen IS one-dimensional and campy, in both his words and actions. He might have an interesting, tragic origin story, but none of that flows to his character in-game. All he cares about is power and revenge, and he'll do it via repetitive, villainous monologues, and classic Bond villain decisions (let's make sure I give the hero a chance survive), etc.

After the prologue, Irenicus's motivations are really only re-communicated again in his two journals, which is also a failure of "show don't tell" IMO. But even within the second journal (written after he steals the Bhaalspawn's soul), this more interesting motivation from the prologue is never addressed at all (all he talks about is revenge). It honestly would've been the perfect place to close that tragic arc - "I've regained a soul, but still feel nothing. All that is left is revenge". I know there was a third journal that never made it into the game, and I have to wonder if that was it.

Even if Bioware wished to limit the sympathetic aspect of Irenicus, I wished they really integrated his limited ability to feel emotions into his character/dialogue more. But unfortunately, a lot of the dialogue between the Bhaalspawn and Irencius devolve into pretty generic hero/dark lord lines. "I'll stop you Irenicus!" "Fool! Bah! I will have my revenge!" Btw, I'm not exaggerating with the exclamation usage (i.e. seriously, look at the dialogue of the final Spellhold confrontation). This honestly is the part where David Warner's excellent voice acting injects much needed gravitas and really carries the character. But it feels really divorced from the more interesting Irenicus we learn about in the prologue and the first journal. In the end, all we were left was a villain with pretty cliché characteristics and motivation.

With all that said, a similar critique/feedback goes out to BG3. In all of Act 1, the goals and motivation of both the Absolute and the Tadpole (which I would classify as the prime antagonistic force) are shrouded in mystery. Mysteries are fun all, but we really need some core motivation and characteristics for at least one, or both. Right now the Absolute just seems to be all about power (super generic motivation) and we have no idea what the heck the tadpole wants (is it even the dream person?). And if those entities are staying generic, then we need nuisance characteristics introduced somewhere else (i.e. maybe those Chosens the game keep hyping up). It's not a must-have, but a pretty common approach - i.e. the classic if the Empire in Star Wars is basically generic evil, than the individual antagonists (Darth Vader) carries the nuisance motivations to drive the emotional part of the story.

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Originally Posted by Topgoon
Just finished replaying BG2 EE, so this is pretty fresh in my mind. Conceptually, Irenicus is a pretty interesting character, but I do feel like BG2 actually failed to take advantage of that potential.

I do agree, I wished Bioware had chosen to bring his tragedy to the forefront throughout the whole narrative, but not many games were doing that at that time. But still they did flesh him very well. We see Irenicus at the end of his character arc, where is irreversibly gone to madness. There are plenty of good dialogues in-game, including Irenicus as the Spellhold coordinator. The dream sequence shows that Irenicus as powerful as he was, didn't wish to be a spectator of life and sheds insight for his thirsty for power. And I guess once he had the Bhaalspawn's soul that didn't help his involuntary violent bursts.

Quote
"You live you affect your world. This woman lives and has strength of a sort. She lost her parents to plague, her husband to war, but she persevered. Her farm has prospered, her name is respected and her children are fed and safe. She lived as she thought she should. And now she is dead. Her land will be divided, her children will move on, and she will be forgotten. She lived a good life, but she had no power; she was a slave to death.

Your actions affect so many others than yourself. You will come to realize how little choice you have. You will do what you must, become what you must or others will pay for your cowardice."

Originally Posted by Topgoon
Empire in Star Wars is basically generic evil, than the individual antagonists (Darth Vader) carries the nuisance motivations to drive the emotional part of the story.
Darth Vader did not have any nuisance until Episode 3, so I don't think it is a good example.

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"Must I be interrupted at every turn?"

It's AD&D 2e, Jon; get used to the wait.

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Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by Imryll
The more niche the audience, the more niche the budget has to be.
Yes, because Bioware just didn't know how to appeal to mass audience... smile

Of course they did--which is why BG 1 and 2 contained a mix of silly and non-silly content--and challenge laced with opportunities to cheese encounters if folks wanted or needed to.

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Originally Posted by Imryll
Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by Imryll
The more niche the audience, the more niche the budget has to be.
Yes, because Bioware just didn't know how to appeal to mass audience... smile

Of course they did--which is why BG 1 and 2 contained a mix of silly and non-silly content--and challenge laced with opportunities to cheese encounters if folks wanted or needed to.

I thought BG1 & BG2 were made by Black Isle ?
Or did I mix there something ?


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Originally Posted by Topgoon
i.e. the classic if the Empire in Star Wars is basically generic evil,

Wrong.

The Empire in Star Wars is a fascist state / government. This was the intention of George Lucas, and few people realize that. Mostly, because Indiana Jones has made Nazis into some kind of "Disney Villain creature".

George Lucas indeed intended to have the Empire being fascist, and it shows through so many details now forgotten by the masses, because nobody cares for that. Both Lucasfilm and Disney never put their fingers on that, because - frankly speaking - it was successful in terms of profits, and they didn't want the customer to be stirred and irritated at all !

Star wars in its very first incarnation is nothing biut an ecclectic highly experimental art movie on a facist state, and that a hero's journey of a simple farmer (being a farmer in a desert - how much deeper than that can you become ?) is able to undermine it - with the help of a few friends.

It is no wonder why the original Star Wars Empire looks so much like Nazis : It is modelled after them. It's more like "Nazis in space" than anything else - or at least that was George Lucas' intention.

That you call it "generic evil" merely shows how few you know about it.


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Originally Posted by AlrikFassbauer
Originally Posted by Imryll
Originally Posted by Wormerine
Originally Posted by Imryll
The more niche the audience, the more niche the budget has to be.
Yes, because Bioware just didn't know how to appeal to mass audience... smile

Of course they did--which is why BG 1 and 2 contained a mix of silly and non-silly content--and challenge laced with opportunities to cheese encounters if folks wanted or needed to.

I thought BG1 & BG2 were made by Black Isle ?
Or did I mix there something ?
Baldur's Gate 1 and 2 were developed by Bioware and published by BIS, whereas the Icewind Dales and Planescape Torment were developed by BIS.

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Originally Posted by AlrikFassbauer
Originally Posted by Topgoon
i.e. the classic if the Empire in Star Wars is basically generic evil,

Wrong.

The Empire in Star Wars is a fascist state / government. This was the intention of George Lucas, and few people realize that. Mostly, because Indiana Jones has made Nazis into some kind of "Disney Villain creature".

George Lucas indeed intended to have the Empire being fascist, and it shows through so many details now forgotten by the masses, because nobody cares for that. Both Lucasfilm and Disney never put their fingers on that, because - frankly speaking - it was successful in terms of profits, and they didn't want the customer to be stirred and irritated at all !

Star wars in its very first incarnation is nothing biut an ecclectic highly experimental art movie on a facist state, and that a hero's journey of a simple farmer (being a farmer in a desert - how much deeper than that can you become ?) is able to undermine it - with the help of a few friends.

It is no wonder why the original Star Wars Empire looks so much like Nazis : It is modelled after them. It's more like "Nazis in space" than anything else - or at least that was George Lucas' intention.

That you call it "generic evil" merely shows how few you know about it.
Lucas may well have been inspired by various concepts of fascism, but Episode IV hardly goes into any kind of serious details about the form of government. All we really get to see is a totalitarian superstate that rules by intimidation and expects immediate and unconditional obedience. That could be a lot of things and nothing about that specifically says "nazism".

Also, certain elements of fascism are missing from what we were told of the Empire in Episode IV. The nationalism isn't obvious since there are no other space nations, there's no specific reference to racial purity either (and clearly non-humans are tolerated, even if none appear to have gained employment as stormtroopers, technicians, or ship captains). And it is unclear how the senate is pushing protectionism to maintain a solid private economy. In fact we don't get any details about how the local planetary economies work and how that plays out in an interplanetary context.

This isn't to say that Lucas didn't think of the Empire as fascist but merely that there are limits to how strongly they pushed that angle in the movie.

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Originally Posted by Imryll
Of course they did--which is why BG 1 and 2 contained a mix of silly and non-silly content--and challenge laced with opportunities to cheese encounters if folks wanted or needed to.
To me it's like claiming that Batman&Robin is absolutely fine because comic films need humor.

Yes, BG1&2 were overall lighthearted adventures with a lot silly stuff. But it treated material with straight face. BG3 is in on the joke, even when things are serious, bloody and dark, it doesn't treat it seriously. I don't like it. If it doesn't care about its characters, it's world and story, how could it possible engage others? It is just bunch of nonesense with comicly high, yet unexisting stakes and no personal investment coming from anyone.

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Originally Posted by Wormerine
Yes, BG1&2 were overall lighthearted adventures with a lot silly stuff. But it treated material with straight face. BG3 is in on the joke, even when things are serious, bloody and dark, it doesn't treat it seriously. I don't like it. If it doesn't care about its characters, it's world and story, how could it possible engage others? It is just bunch of nonesense with comicly high, yet unexisting stakes and no personal investment coming from anyone.

To me, Baldur's Gate and Baldur's Gate 2 are both fairly balanced in terms of overall mood. Nevertheless, I otherwise agree with your assessment.

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Originally Posted by 1varangian
Originally Posted by robertthebard
Because this is the General Discussion forum, maybe? I mean, it's what this forum is for, discussing things about the game. The better question is, why are you so bothered that I disagree with your assessment? .

Feel free to disagree as much as you want. These are all opinions or matters of taste and there's no right or wrong. You probably don't see how abrasive you come across?

Originally Posted by robertthebard
Reading through the things you post, I can see a lot of approval fishing,

Originally Posted by robertthebard
I can't do anything about your failure to understand

Originally Posted by robertthebard
Perhaps I feel that your stated position isn't of much use to anyone

Originally Posted by robertthebard
you don't understand what "General Discussion" means

etc... just unnecessary.

Fair enough. What was the context for those snippets? Replying to "why are you posting in my thread" and "your opinion isn't worth considering", paraphrasing both here, which came two posts in a row from you. Perhaps you expected that I'd be offended, and run screaming from the forums in tears? Perhaps you thought I'd just go "yeah, why should I want to discuss something about a game I want to succeed on that game's own forums" and go away? If "Feel free to disagree all you want" is truly your position, why did you confront me about posting in this thread? Note that the second time I replied to you trying to remove me from the thread, I cut/pasted the responses. I did this because the forum software allows for "ninja editing", where a poster can change their post, and it changes it in any posts that quote it. I did that precisely because of situations like this, where it's ok if you're getting snarky, but if anyone gets snarky replying, it's abrasive.

So, how about we both take a step back, and look at what may have caused this abrasive situation, and fix what needs to be fixed on our own ends, instead of trying to point to each other's flaws? I mean, the example you gave of me saying your position isn't of much use to anyone was a direct reply to you saying the same thing to me. Was your use acceptable, even though you find my use abrasive?

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I just watched a video discussing realism-formalism in films, and I have learned a fancy new word that nicely discribes my issue with BG3 - verisimilitude, or rather lack of it.

Verisimilitude meaning: the appearance of being true or real. The fiction being able to present it's story in a convincing way.

There is cultural versimilitude - how plausable the fiction is in the context of real world

generic verisimilitude - how plausable the fiction is within it's own conventions.

BG3 just falls flat on both accounts. Being fantasy adventure the generic v. is of course more important, but even so stuff like riddiculus jumps and push do take away from authenticy of the action, without giving in-universe explanation for it. Pretty much all major complaints I can think of (distance between grove and goblin camp, pocket universe camp, teleporting, cheap ressurects, stealing barrels, clearly inteligent and sentient animals, healing through throwing potions etc. etc.) it all chips at the story's verisimilitude.

That's I think why from recent Larian games I was fond the most of D:OS1 - it's story and tone complimented design, gameplay and encouraged interaction, resulting in a coherent experience. It has verisimilitude, even though it has little to no realism. While there are silliness that can be pointed towards in BG1&2, I rarely found it brake its verismilitude, as well - it is a colourful and silly word but that never clashed with a story it was telling. It's not on how realistic or deep the story was - it was, by all means, a story for teens. But it told its story well.

BG3 is just difficult to buy into - I can't care for characters nor situations so the whole thing ends up unengaging and boring.



And as I brought up P.H.W. video essay I will also throw another one on R-Rated Superhero flicks. I have been finding trend of R-rated children entertainment (sorry, Snyder films or BG3 have nothing mature in them) just offputting. Mature fantasy can, of course, work and exist, but BG3 ain't it. Missquoting Alan Moore for my own expressive purposes "If you try to make them [A.M. meant: comics superheroes, I will say: BG games] for the adult world then I think it becomes kind of grotesque". And with digital dolls having pornographic sex scenes, to detailed decapitations, awkward body horror and swearing dwarfs - what a grotesque experience it is.

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