First full day with Baldur’s Gate 3. Illusion of choice, and a Revivify tip. Four microblogging bits from Saturday.

Saturday Bits: Baldur's Gate 3 Edition

439 words.

Saturday Bits: Baldur's Gate 3 Edition

Dispatches from

08:36 # Last night, after previously trying a Gith Rogue and a Human Ranger, I settled on a Halfling Bard named Tavi as my Baldur’s Gate 3 character, mainly because she’s completely opposite to the boring Marvel-style Heroic Fantasy trope that D&D 5E wants me to be. She’s always stopping to play drums and trying to get the dour quest-focused party into a drum circle.

09:28 # Baldur’s Gate 3 is fun but it’s only been a couple hours and I’ve already gotten some hints it will be yet another narrative choice game that is infected by that plague where it gives you an illusion of choice but actually railroads you through a fixed narrative. I chose to help a mind flayer and … the game ended. Wrong choice, player! You think you have a choice here, but you have to make the choice we want you to make! (And, knowing the player could possibly choose to die immediately, the game did not do an autosave beforehand. Annoying.) To be fair, the game made it clear I was making a poor decision that probably wouldn’t end well, but all good stories are based on bad decisions, right?

(I always think of this illustrative Viva La Dirt video when I encounter “illusion of choice” in video games.)

15:34 # Still a fun game, but what I thought was a massive bug in Baldur’s Gate 3 turned out to be a miscommunication about how the UI works. You have to click twice to use a Revivify scroll. The target is not, in fact, blocked, appearing for all the world like a game-breaking bug. You simply have to move the cursor to the spot where you want to resurrect the character and click a second time. Never occurred to me. Didn’t notice any UI feedback to indicate that’s how it was supposed to work. I should have known: I think I was similarly confused by the same mechanic in Divinity: Original Sin.

21:49 # Baldur’s Gate 3. On my first full day with Baldur’s Gate 3, Tavi the Bard and her companions Shadowheart, Astarion, and Gale reached level 3, first exploring and fighting bandits and undead in the Refectory and Dank Crypt, then helping to repel a goblin attack and entering the Emerald Grove. No fighters. Needed one Revivify scroll so far. Got to the first vendor to offload the traditionally excessive amount of junk RPG loot. Talked to a squirrel. Helped a vampire.

(I’m playing on Tactician difficulty and, so far, with no real fighters in the party, almost every major encounter has been a nail-biting close call.)

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