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GM4Him Offline OP
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So, I've been kinda saying it on other posts, but I'm laying it out here in a brand new one.

In the Great British Bakeoff (love that show), the judges sometimes make the bakers create Illusion Cakes. The concept of the Illusion Cake is to make something look like something else, but it's really a cake. So, in one episode, someone made their cakes look like hamburgers, french fries (chips in England, I believe), ice cream, etc. The cake tastes amazing, but at the end of the day, it was cake, not hamburgers and such.

That is how I feel about Baldur's Gate 3 right now, and I know I'm not alone. Baldur's Gate LOOKS like a D&D 5e Game set in the world of Forgotten Realms, but it doesn't taste or smell like a D&D 5e game set in the world of Forgotten Realms. It is a beautiful game and as fun as heck. I've never played a game THIS much. I almost never replay a game more than once. I didn't even replay Baldur's Gate 1 and 2 more than once. I could barely get through them once. It's too much work for me. I don't have endless hours to throw at any game, so for me to play 500+ hours, I must really really love this game.

I also really love cake, but if I see something that looks like a hamburger, and I bite into it and it tastes like cake, that's gonna mess with me. It might be fun at first, but at the end of the day I want cakes to look and taste like cakes and hamburgers to look and taste like hamburgers. (I'm getting hungry now.) smile

My point is that Baldur's Gate 3 is messing with me. It's like it WANTS to be a D&D 5e Baldur's Gate sequel game, but there are just so many elements that aren't D&D 5e Baldur's Gate. Again, I'm not alone in this because there are many who say it is more like DOS 1 and 2 than Baldur's Gate 1 and 2. Why is it so much like DOS and not BG1 and 2? Because it strays so much from D&D, and there are too many elements from the first two games that are missing.

What could they do to make hamburgers taste and smell like hamburgers? Cook with hamburger meat and not cake. What I mean is, they need to do things that tie players into the originals from a feeling perspective. How do they do this?

1. Proper D&D 5e stats for monsters and enemies. This is absolutely essential to the feel. You can make them injured so they have less health. You can do all sorts of things to make them easier or harder to kill, but you need to at least give them their proper abilities, resistances, vulnerabilities, etc. Example: What makes a phase spider a phase spider is Ethereal Jaunt. They should be phasing into the Ethereal Plane, moving up on their enemies in ways their enemies can't see, and then phasing into the Material Plane and ninja assassinating the characters. Then, as a Bonus Action, they bounce back into the Ethereal Plane. So, every time a phase spider Ethereal Jaunts into the Material Plane to attack, they use their Bonus action and can't Ethereal Jaunt back. So you get an entire round before it can Ethereal Jaunt again to peg it before it escapes into the Ethereal Plane and does it all over again. They don't teleport like they all know an extreme form of Misty Step and bounce around game maps willy nilly acting like they can go anywhere and do anything no matter where you hide or how far you go to get away from them. Part of the whole fun of facing phase spiders is you have to try to guess and predict where they're going. You have to try to lure some away into traps and get them to try to attack your tanks while your squishies keep away and peg them as soon as they appear. It's all about strategy, but you can't do those strategies if they aren't even acting like phase spiders. Imps don't have resistance, intellect devourers don't do Devour Intellect, their most signature move, Sword Spiders don't Pounce on their prey, I still haven't seen a Minotaur do their signature Charge attack, but they sure like to Hulk Smash Leap everywhere, Wood Woads, Mud Mephits... Over and over again, most monsters don't do the things that they're supposed to, and they're nerfed in order to make the game work for a party of 4 at the levels Larian is limiting us to.

2. Proper base 5e rules. The more homebrew, the more you negate certain base elements of 5e that make different abilities and classes unique and fun. Rogue fast hands is virtually meaningless if everyone can drink a potion as a Bonus action. Cunning Action is pointless if everyone can hide as a Bonus. These are just 2 examples.

3. Party size of 6. Yes, there's a whole separate Mega-Thread for this, but in this particular thread, the point is that Party size of 6 is a Signature Baldur's Gate 1 and 2 Party Size. Party Size 4 is DOS. Why do people feel like this is more of a DOS game? One of the reasons is that it is Party Size 4. If you want Baldur's Gate 3 to smell and taste like Baldur's Gate 1 and 2, you need to at least allow for a Party Size of 6. Why? Because one of the most awesome things about BG1 and 2 was that you met a TON of potential party members that you could have in your party. By the Hells! 6 was too limiting for me in those games. I was frustrated to no end because I wanted Minsc and Jaheira and Imoen and Aerie and Viconia and Mazzy and the thief guy who always said, "I can dance on the head of a pin" (can't remember his name for the life of me right now) and the monk guy and the paladin and just about every freaking character all in my party and I was limited to only 6. That's only 5 other characters because I had my custom made MC. That sucked. 4 is even more viciously limiting. I want to have ALL the origin characters in the party, and frankly, if they allow me to have Minthara and Karlach and Halsin and Zevlor and Elegis and Kagha and Rath and Nettie and whoever else they're going to allow us to have, 4 is going to feel SUPER UBER MONSTROUSLY LIMITING!

And as I've said in the Mega-thread, a party size of 6 would allow Larian to use proper D&D 5e stats without having to add or subtract any monsters from any encounters. The entire game would be perfectly balanced for a 6 party member size game with proper D&D 5e stats. So there wouldn't need to be nerfing of monster stats and stripping them of their signature moves or nothing. So combining both would only make for a truly authentic D&D 5e Baldur's Gate experience.

4. Random Encounters. Yes, a lot of people don't like Random Encounters. However, after playing Solasta again, I realized what I like about Random Encounters. Flavor. Variety. Immersion. I know, when you're on your way to fight the goblins at the goblin camp, the last thing you want to do is face some random encounter fighting a pack of wolves or a bear or whatever who pop up on you out of nowhere. However, what we have right now is a world that is DEVOID of life. The forest has no wild animals. Nothing is really and truly living or breathing. In BG1 and 2, you had animals hopping around, even if they didn't fight you, random fights that would spring up on you, and the world wasn't just waiting for you to spring the next cutscene. It was more living and breathing. Besides this, what most don't realize about Random Encounters is that they provide variety in the monsters you fight. There isn't much variety right now in BG3. When I roam in a forest, I might get attacked by a pack of wolves during one playthrough. The next time, I might run into giant spiders roaming the streets of Bogrot. The next time, I might encounter a group of kobolds when I'm roaming one of the dungeons or caves. One time, I might encounter a group of evil gnomes or bandits on the road or SOMETHING besides the same old encounters every time I replay the game. Yes, Random Encounters can be annoying, but when you don't have them, you also don't have variety in encounters. And again, the point is that Random Encounters was another element of the originals that is missing, and the more elements that are missing, the less it feels like the originals.

5. Day/Night. Yes, I'm repeating a lot of items that I've mentioned in the past, but aren't we all really just repeating everything that's been said for the last year? I won't go much into this, but Day/Night REALLY gave the originals the ambiance that is missing in BG3. The dark streets of Athkatla at night with vampires prowling about, the dark forest where you and the werewolf lady are fighting shadow wolves and other wildlife, the graveyard at night, even fighting the trolls in the dark or gnolls or spiders or all the plethora of other monsters that make D&D what D&D is (because having a variety of monsters is one of the absolute staples of D&D and what makes it fun), all of it is lost in the blaring, blazing light of day. I want to have zombies grab my characters' legs as I'm moving through the bog at night. Then they spring up out of the water as the horror music starts to play, and you can only see their eyeballs popping out of their heads in the pale moonlight. I want that gnoll scene at the toll house to be SO much scarier, which it could be at night, with the gruesome bodies all around . I want phase spiders and ettercaps roaming Bogrot at night pouncing at us from spidery webbed buildings with eerie, spooky music playing or off of rooftops. I want caves in the Underdark and where they should be without beaming rays of sunlight pouring down. Day/Night could be done so easily. Forget realtime clocks and so forth. Just implement a single button that switches it from Day to Night. Then, you want night to day, you Long Rest. Boom. Done. Yes, I'm aware intense coding is involved, but it would make this game a thousand times more fun.

This has gone on long enough, so I won't go into any of the other items I'm thinking of. The point is, Larian... Please, please please just hear me and think about this. If you get nothing else from this post, please at least get this. If you want this game to truly smell and taste like BG1 and 2 at all, and D&D at all, and not just look kinda like a D&D 5e Baldur's Gate sequel, but you want it to actually BE a Baldur's Gate sequel, then please consider implementing more of these things from the first games that would make it FEEL more like a D&D 5e Baldur's Gate sequel.

Last edited by GM4Him; 08/11/21 04:51 AM.
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Originally Posted by GM4Him
If you want this game to truly smell and taste like BG1 and 2 at all, and D&D at all [...]
That's the thing, isn't it? It's arguable that it's of higher priority to Larian to make something truly their own, rather than make something that "smells and tastes like BG1 & 2". It's clear to me it was never their intention to make something like that in the first place. Plenty of people don't care much for the original games, and even dislike them, as clearly expressed by some on these very forums. Hell, some have even said that this BG3 atm is precisely how a BG game should be. So what incentive would Larian have to make a game more "similar" to the originals? Why exactly should they change their design direction now? From where I see it, it's more a problem of "not wanting to do it", rather than "not knowing how to do it". From a business standpoint, it really is more beneficial to them to try to cater to as many different groups of audience as possible, rather than aiming specifically for the BG fans. This game is their big step that truly takes them as a studio to an entirely new level. I don't see why they would want to turn around and try to please the BG fans now.

That aside, it's not just D&D rules and creature stats. There's the writing and overall atmosphere, for which Larian also has their own things.


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Originally Posted by Try2Handing
Originally Posted by GM4Him
If you want this game to truly smell and taste like BG1 and 2 at all, and D&D at all [...]
That's the thing, isn't it? It's arguable that it's of higher priority to Larian to make something truly their own, rather than make something that "smells and tastes like BG1 & 2". It's clear to me it was never their intention to make something like that in the first place. Plenty of people don't care much for the original games, and even dislike them, as clearly expressed by some on these very forums. Hell, some have even said that this BG3 atm is precisely how a BG game should be. So what incentive would Larian have to make a game more "similar" to the originals? Why exactly should they change their design direction now? From where I see it, it's more a problem of "not wanting to do it", rather than "not knowing how to do it". From a business standpoint, it really is more beneficial to them to try to cater to as many different groups of audience as possible, rather than aiming specifically for the BG fans. This game is their big step that truly takes them as a studio to an entirely new level. I don't see why they would want to turn around and try to please the BG fans now.

That aside, it's not just D&D rules and creature stats. There's the writing and overall atmosphere, for which Larian also has their own things.


There is actually an article where Swen states that BG3 is a game that will be based on D&D 5e. They are not trying to make a strict DnD game because they want to make a game that is for everyone and they want to stick to their roots (DOS?). He also said they may not use al the rules of DnD because some of them may not translate well into a video game. He also said he is focusing on making first and foremost a video game not a tabletop.

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Yeah yeah. So it'll look like hamburger, but taste like cake. So, the end result is that you either need to like cake that looks like hamburger and get used to it, or just go away.

Last edited by GM4Him; 08/11/21 08:33 AM.
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Originally Posted by GM4Him
Yeah yeah. So it'll look like hamburger, but taste like cake. So, the end result is that you either need to like cake that looks like hamburger and get used to it, or just go away.

Well, if you want a strictly hamburger and don’t want to taste anything else. Then you have no choice then to stick with the hamburger that exists since the chef has made it clear they are making something based on a hamburger but not necessarily a hamburger.

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It’s foolish to hope that now Larian will pivot toward making “a Baldur’s Gate” game. It’s fine. BG1&2 exist still. In a couple of years wide public with catch up with Larian’s shortcomings, just as they finally seem to catch up with Bethesda. And maybe if BG3 is successful we will get somewhere down the line New Vegas equivalent for BG, by someone who understands and wants to make that game.

As it’s own thing, BG3 shows a bit of promise, as long as Larian stops unnecessarily messing thing up. When I heard rumours that Larian will be making BG3, I immediately understood that it will be D:OS2 with DND - and that sounded alright. D:OS2 had good presentation and good engine, but poor systems. While I don’t love DnD, it is a more mature, and more sophisticated ruleset. Alas, so far BG3 is still worse then D:OS2. Larian home brew additions don’t even have the little depth that D:OS1&2 had, while overriding and undermining core DND ruleset. It’s frustrating to say the least.

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Originally Posted by GM4Him
get used to it, or just go away.
Isnt it like this with litteraly every game? wink


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The thing is neither bg1 or bg2 werea faithful adaptation of the d&d rules either. More faithful adaptation of the current rules will not make it closer to the original games. That is a completely separate thing.

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I like that there are some adaptations to the 5e rules, such as being able to drink a healing potion as a bonus action.

I also like that there are no random encounters. Having lots of trash mobs slows down the pacing for me.

Last edited by Icelyn; 08/11/21 12:02 PM.
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Originally Posted by dza101
The thing is neither bg1 or bg2 werea faithful adaptation of the d&d rules either. More faithful adaptation of the current rules will not make it closer to the original games. That is a completely separate thing.

The point I was trying to make with more faithful stats, etc. Is that monsters do not act like they should and don't even use their signature abilities.

Besides this, the more you veer away from the Core stats and mechanics, the less like D&D it feels.

Take Neverwinter Online. I've played a lot of that too. Fun game. Totally not a D&D game. Nothing like D&D except setting and kinda sorta story. But it is so video gamey, it can hardly be classified as even in the same category as Neverwinter Nights 1 and 2. It's labeled a Neverwinter game, but it doesn't feel at all like the original. I'd say it feels more like Final Fantasy 14 online or Skyrim online.

That's what I'm saying with BG3. The more they deviate from D&D 5e core rules and especially the stats, the less it feels like a genuine D&D Baldur's Gate game.

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I guess people expect every game in a franchise to be exactly the same.

It doesn't work like that anymore.

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Originally Posted by Try2Handing
...it really is more beneficial to them to try to cater to as many different groups of audience as possible, rather than aiming specifically for the BG fans. This game is their big step that truly takes them as a studio to an entirely new level. I don't see why they would want to turn around and try to please the BG fans now.

That aside, it's not just D&D rules and creature stats. There's the writing and overall atmosphere, for which Larian also has their own things.

I personally wouldn't call half heartily pressing DnD's class system and action economy into DoS design concept as taking a big step. On the contrary, that show me they are a one trick pony. Taking a big step would have been trying to make a game that doesn't immediately gets me thinking of DoS 1/2.
Sure, the engine and art style they're using is a part of it but that's understandable and that is not all to blame. When I played a year ago, it hit me directly; oh, environmental tactics and surfaces, typical Larian, they even changed the cantrips to make them similar to the 1st lvl spells you get in DoS 2. And they really want those burning patches to hurt not adding saves to them.

Then, after feedback, they tuned that down and I felt; ok, now we're getting somewhere. There are still major issues like for example that they blatantly dislike the class system wanting to give class specific features to everyone because "in DoS the player can be whatever he wants", but they at least took a step in the right direction. And then, a month ago, they did it again, changed a spell to create surfaces though it shouldn't. Chromatic orb did have a similar effect in 4e but BG3 is (supposed to be) 5e.
They have the knowledge and experience to make environmental tactics and surfaces, when created by the players, visually stunning. But it isn't needed to be forced upon us. Instead of having a barrels of oil standing in the middle of a room, seeing a small bottle of oil or an oil lamp standing next to an enemy is enough. The opponent can think; "ha, you missed!" then...*seeing the wizard starting to conjure flames in his hand*..."oh shit". We don't need a spell creating an electrified puddle of water included with its damage, we already have "Create Water" if we want a conducting element to make our lightning based spell hit several opponents.

There is no reason for it. Like you said, they do have other ways to give a lasting, personal imprint on the game. The writing (I love Larians tendency for comical relief, especially their snarky animals) and the art style. Not following the source material when it comes to stats and rules isn't "not aiming for the BG fans". It's disrespecting DnD fans. In a DnD game.

Also, it's never more beneficial trying to cater the larger mass. Instead of getting a sharp product that is really liked by one group, you get a bland product that is, accepted at most, by many. Which is also clearly expressed on the forums.

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Originally Posted by Wormerine
It’s foolish to hope that now Larian will pivot toward making “a Baldur’s Gate” game. It’s fine. BG1&2 exist still. In a couple of years wide public with catch up with Larian’s shortcomings, just as they finally seem to catch up with Bethesda. And maybe if BG3 is successful we will get somewhere down the line New Vegas equivalent for BG, by someone who understands and wants to make that game.

As it’s own thing, BG3 shows a bit of promise, as long as Larian stops unnecessarily messing thing up. When I heard rumours that Larian will be making BG3, I immediately understood that it will be D:OS2 with DND - and that sounded alright. D:OS2 had good presentation and good engine, but poor systems. While I don’t love DnD, it is a more mature, and more sophisticated ruleset. Alas, so far BG3 is still worse then D:OS2. Larian home brew additions don’t even have the little depth that D:OS1&2 had, while overriding and undermining core DND ruleset. It’s frustrating to say the least.

This. I feel as if Larian has too many irons in the fire. Get the basics right (5e), then work on improving and adapting for a videogame. I find it really weird that they keep feeding us more areas, but a lot of the basics are unclear (reactions, classes, character customisation, etc.). I don't want to have the story spoiled, I want to know if I will enjoy the game's mechanics.

Also, the chain is horrible and should be scrapped ASAP. It's by far the worst part of BG3.

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Originally Posted by dukeisaac
I find it really weird that they keep feeding us more areas, but a lot of the basics are unclear (reactions, classes, character customisation, etc.).
Those are not mutually exclusive - people who work on writing, level design etc. Aren't necessarily same people who work on combat design and adaptation do the ruleset. People were craving for new content and Larian decided to deliver it with patch6, which otherwise would be fairly unremarkable (visual upgreats are great, but now quite meat&potatoe).

I am with you, that I am more interested in seeing progress in systems, then experiencing more of unfinished story content. During older panel from Hell Sven said they are working on better reaction system, so I hope that will happen in the future - maybe it requires new UI, maybe will be packaged with new classes.

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it's a fair point concerning the areas and such. As you, I'm simpy more interested in what the system designers have to offer... that's what will keep my interest in the game.

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My main problem with this "based on 5e" is that it tells me that they used 5e and added their own stuff. While this is ok, you need to stay true to the main way the rules work.

If you change something in a ruleset you may come out with a lot of rubbish and stuff stops working like it was intended too, breaking the ruleset. Shoving/jumping mechanics is a nice example. The way it was implemeted totally destroys the way combat is intended in D&D.

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I agree with 1,2,4 and 5 and have made posts many times especially day/night which is a game breaker for me to know they couldn't be arsed. Party size is dependent on campaign size even in D&D tabletop and I think the game map is cluttered enough at the minute with 4 party members, but of course this is my opinion.

My main issue is the addition of homebrew CORE game mechanics. BG is a D&D franchise and as such reflect that. I know Larian wanted to cut and paste DOS3, tweek a few numbers and hope nobody noticed but BG1&2 fans are where the money is as they are still alive and kicking. Tenny bops don't play games that involve effort, they push X and win, send a tweet then move on to the next exciting adventure.

I have no issue Larian adding their own flavor but the CORE game must mirror the mechanics already in black and white. I don't see how Larian can build a city like Baldurs gate or Waterdeep without a night cycle? They can't as most stuff happens at night. Random encounters when travelling between areas is a dice roll and a random map tile....too much to ask for? For those who want to play the story there are always easy mode and Larian are good at tweeking difficulty as DOS2 did it great.

The addition of "something" that competes with core game mechanics always has a cascade effect in D&D. Advantage and healing for example. Advantage is something gained though tactical positioning (or spell aka resource) of more than one character where instant healing is something class/spell specific. Monsters have their own playstyle mixing the fights up, 50 goblins is a slog but a lich, vampire lord etc. is a totally different fight, RUN AWAY!!! Time stop......boom dead.

D&D mechanics have nearly 50 years of ironing and tweeking I doubt a game adaptation is going to reinvent the wheel here. I will give it to Larian they are listening to the feedback but like I said earier no day/night is a game breaker for me personally and wouldn't of purchased EA if I knew. The game is good, could be better.

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Regarding the OP, would love points 4 and 5.

The first thing that impressed me in BG2, back in 2000, was the level of immersion and how it felt alive even with outdated graphics. I think it was the core of the experience.

BG3 feels plastic and constricted and that comes from Larian not understanding what made the originals so special.

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This game was never suppose to be litteral transcript of tabletop rules, as Swen told us multiple times in countless occasions ...
Some people still presumed it will be. :-/ I feel for them, but that will be probably all. :-/

I hope someone will create proper DnD mod fo you tho. wink


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