Where was the expectation that BG3 will be a faithful adaptation to 5E set? I honestly do not recall any promises made in that regard. This is coming from someone who wants a more faithful adaptation to the rules (as a Paladin fan, I am dreading to see how they'll butcher my smite), but I've never had the expectation that the rules adaptation would be faithful.

Just look at the Baldur's Gate 3 Steam Store page vs. Solasta's.

  • BG3 only states that it is set in the world of dungeons and dragons in the intro paragraph. Its first mention of being "based on" 5e rules is in the full features list buried under the read more expandable.
  • Contrast that to Solasta - whose first line "TRUE TO THE TABLETOP"

It's clear where each games' vision and value proposition sits, regardless of our personal preferences.

We can all prefer steak to chicken, but it's unreasonable to order a chicken and be mad that you didn't get steak.

In terms of interviews, even from the very start, there was no mention of a "faithful adaptation to 5E". From an interview with Gamespot after the 2019 Announcement. It feels like from the start, they would be working with WoTC to be changing things in lore and gameplay.

We worked very closely with Wizards, they actually adapted certain things for us so that it would work in the video game also. They've been very, very flexible in that. There are adaptations that we had to make to turn it into a video game, but it features a lot of the iconic stuff that people love about Dungeons & Dragons.

The one quote I can find that leans most towards a "faithful adaptation" would be this quote from a PCGamesn interview with Sven. But even then, it's clear in the quote that Larian would be making adaptations for the game. You can argue that Larian has gutted the heart of D&D in their translation, but you have to be expecting changes.

BG3 is based on the fifth edition [of D&D]. We started by setting out the ruleset very meticulously, and then seeing what worked and what didn’t work – because it is a videogame, and D&D was made to play as a tabletop game. So for the things that didn’t work, we came up with solutions.

The cool thing we found is that a lot of what makes D&D, D&D, actually survived the translation, so I think that if you like Dungeons and Dragons and you want to play BG3, you’re going to be happy.