"Time limits" (or to more properly call them, "timed restrictions") if generous enough to not force a player to skip content can make a game of this kind.
One of my favorite examples (and one i already mentioned countless times in other threads, but redundancy is a bit of a second nature of every forum) is the first act of Pathfinder Kingmaker: you have a "soft" deadline of a month to accomplish the first major goal (getting rid of a Baron Robber) and a hard deadline of three months.
Achieving the first is reasonably challenging but it's entirely possible while still completing 100% of the content if you travel light and avoid resting TOO often. But accomplishing this goal rewards you with the best magic sword up to that point into the game.
Achieving the second is trivial. You'd have to go out of your way to waste entire weeks in the most unproductive way to not get rid of the first minor villain by three months.
It's a simple mechanic, but it manages to achieve several goals:
- it gives MEANING to the rest and encumbrance systems rather than making them just a negligible minor annoyance.
- It gives a reasonable sense of urgency while being more than forgiving enough to not rush the player too much.
- It offer an optional additional challenge if you want to go for the "hard goal" and it rewards you appropriately for it.
- It surely as fuck makes a lot more sense and offers more internal consistency than the trite "You have to hurry, it's NOW OR NEVER" only to follow with "Lul, just kidding. Take all the time you want".
It's also a mechanic that works exceptionally well when it comes to secondary, optional goals. At very least in terms of having less people bitch and moan about it on mere principle of "I don't like being rushed" (when in reality they haven't been rushed at all, just asked to not spam a long rest every two goblins and cobolds).
While I might not approve of the tone Tuco sometimes have (although, I know why you argue the way you do from time to time, Tuco :p I've read those posts too!) - but hands down, I am actually with Tuco on this one.
While I do not necessarily feel like it would ruin the game by not implementing it - time limiting, when done right, is not at all the kind of rush-feast that people think it is. Maybe it is because I played a LOT of Xcom 1/2 (and other strategy games like Civilization that does not allow one to dwell for too long) before I even began with CRPGs, but I simply feel like it adds some realism to the matter. They say it is urgent, but this is demonstrated in no other way than in words.
Anyhow - while on the matter, I was very hesitant about buying Pathfinder: Kingmaker because of all the nay-sayers on Steam. I was nervous about the difficulty and I was *VERY* nervous about the time-limited aspects - especially since Pathfinder is it's own game and not following the same ruleset as many other CRPGs. But, when all was said and done, I bought it - while still reasonably fresh to the CRPG genre - and I enjoyed it very, very, very much. Tuco is 100% right in that while you might feel rushed when entering P:K and they say "You got X amount of time before this is all over" and actually see the count-down in your journal - you very soon realize what an insane amount of time you actually have. I could with ease make it within the month (that would be the more difficult reward, as Tuco mentioned) while doing everything I wanted to do - and I had sooo much time to explore the entire game, while still leaving room for mistakes like non-optimal pathing, running back and forth etc without being hindered. Granted - I played it on easy because... Well, the P:K rumors scared the crap out of me - but I feel no shame about it. I mainly play CRPGs for the story - not to get stuck on particular encounters. Running the game while enjoying the combat challenge is for my second/third etc playthrough, not for my first run. :]
So - while I doubt Larian will add a time restriction now, I certainly think they could have - or should, in future games. It doesnt have to be merciless, it doesn't have to stress you to the point where you do not dare to waste time on anything optional... It is just to increase the immersion and actually grant a more believable feeling of time passing. PoE2 also did this to an extent, and I did enjoyed it there as well, although certain time limited aspects (like chasing that damn ship) made my heart skip more than just a couple of beats (but that was because I screwed up big time and had to rush in an attempt to make up for it).
What I am trying to say is - even people who play like me can play with time limits. I am going to make a guess that Tuco is more of a min-max player than I am, since I am very casual and hence enjoying a huge chunk of comfort into my roleplaying experience - but that did in no way hinder my experience in P:K. It is not as dreadful as it may sound to those who are not used to time limiting aspects - and, when implemented properly, it is true that you literally have to waste time in a way that is simply not appropriate in order to fail on easier difficulties.
I'd even go the step further than Tuco above. If Larian implemented the same kind form of time limiting that "Story time"-Pathfinder has (easiest difficulty there is), then you could rest after every, single encounter - if you wanted to. You could even take an extra rest every now and then, just for fun. You could backtrack, run around in circles and do all side quests. You'd still make the hard-limit, no sweat. And you would easily make the soft-limit by just resting every second camp while still doing a through search of each and every area you go to - even with a comfortable amount of time left to explore the surrounding areas, if you'd like.
The biggest argument I'd see against time limiting in BG3 is the fact that our current system regarding companion conversations demands us to "waste" time resting (a lot) even when it is not needed nor appropriate. You also have to "test-rest" often in order to double-check that there has been no conversations triggered, as our companions rarely tell us when they want to talk. I mean - I rest *A LOT* on my current play through, and I STILL managed to miss multiple conversations...... This system does not match well with a time-gating system, but that does not make time-limiting aspects bad in general.