The issue in BGIII is the complete opposite. Your PC has almost no identity. Aside from a few spoken lines, you are a complete blank slate. Milquetoast. There is no explanation to show where your character hails from. There's not even a back story to show the events that led up to this game. If you read into the lore, you see the game takes place after Decent Into Avernus. But if I'm a casual BG fan, where are my connecting dots? I feel like another opening cinematic should be added if we create a custom PC giving some kind of back story.
It seems clear from the storytelling thus far that the Illithid are after individuals with special conditions. The companions anyway. It seems like every Tom, Dick and Harry you run into was abducted or touched in some way. Nobody seems “normal”.
The only normal person in this game is my PC. They’re vanilla as it gets. Nothing about my PC feels “special”, or there being a tale worth telling. Quite the contrary. There is no tale. Why were they abducted? What did they do pre-abduction? What are their aspirations? If they have any, they certainly aren’t revealed through the course of EA. Sure, selections can be made to mold the PC a certain way, but a giant piece seems missing. Every one of our companions has a unbelievably crazy back story. That’s fine, I like them all. But where’s my crazy back story?
So my options are select a blank slate or one of these pre-made origin characters. Again, nothing wrong with any of these characters. But they aren’t MINE. The decisions being made by me feel like nothing but choices to move the story along. When you’re using an origin character, that’s fine. But if we’re making a custom character who barely has any dialog, where is the intrigue to keep me going?
We need to feel like our creation is important. Like they have a place in this world. Currently they feel like they did in DoS. A blank slate that makes decisions. A merc for hire, with all the events happening to more interesting characters around us.
I believe your feeling of "I'm too much of a blank slate" stems from the fact that this game doesn't start from humble beginnings that you can relate to. It doesn't ground you and relate you to a family, a home, or an organization. It's done partly to accommodate for you to be able to be any kind of character, race, class, etc. (and frankly, the adopted child has been done too many times). You don't need a particularly exciting backstory if you start out in your backstory, and then set out on an adventure. This one you're almost literally just dropped into. Larian did this in both previous games, and I think it's a mistake to start "in medias res".
It is then further amplified by the fact that your dialogue options are intensely devoid of character. The NPC's and companions show great personality, but your dialogue options are entirely toothless. There's a whole slew of fun dialogue options in BG1 and 2 that can give you a sense of character, but the ones we have in this game are so bare bones that it portrays a person with only a semblance of a character, as if the tadpole has already started wiping out any sense of humor and genuine personality. I'm sort of preparing a bigger post on this topic.
I do have to say that I dislike how uniquely weird my companions are. Lae'Zel and Shadowheart are excellent, but Astarion would be better of just being a snob and not a weird sunbathing vampire who wants to either exsanguinate or fuck everything he comes across. Gale's story and accompanied mechanic I absolutely cannot stand. Wyll I never found on my first playthrough. If there is a story reason for why these weirdoes are kidnapped by the mindflayers I guess it's somewhat better, but not by much. I would still prefer party members that have a semblance of normality so I don't have to strain my suspension of disbelief too far and could actually relate to them.
On full release I suspect I will be playing an origin character IF there is one that it's slightly possible to relate to. I suspect and hope that the dialogue options for the origin characters have a bit more meat on the bones than those of a generic character. It'll give me more of a feeling of playing a character than just being an empty shell observing interesting characters and stories going on outside my vacuous mind.