developer: Larian Studios
publisher: Larian Studios
Game mode: single / multiplayer
Multiplayer mode: Internet / split screen, players: 1-4
game language: English
game release date for PC:
The official release date of the game for PC has not been announced yet.
Baldur's Gate III is the third installment of the cult RPG series, launched in 1998 by BioWare studio. The game was developed by the Larian Studios, which gained world fame with the best-selling Divinity series, and was created under the eye of the Wizards of the Coast company. Its mechanic is based on the fifth edition of Dungeons & Dragons paper RPG system, although some of its elements have been modified to better fit the video game.
Baldur's Gate 3 takes place about a hundred years after the events presented in Throne of Bhaal, a expansion to Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn. The action is launched at the moment when the Baldur's Gate is invaded by representatives of the sinister race of Illithids (Mind Flayers). Before the brave dragon riders manage to chase away the aggressors, they turn part of the buildings into ruin. In addition, they take on board their ship - the Nautiloid - many inhabitants of the metropolis to undergo a terrible process called ceremorphosis. It consists in the fact that the host's brain is infected with an embryo of Mind Flayer, which gradually eats it and, consequently, fully replaces it. After a few days the process of physical transformation of the host begins, which in turn becomes a new terrifying Illithid.
In the course of the game, we play the role of a character, who, although it was possible to avoid kidnapping, one of such embryos started to nest in her brain. Although at first our hero (or heroine) tries to find a cure for this ailment, with time he finds out that it provides him with abilities that healthy people can only dream of. As you can easily guess, this is only a prelude to a much bigger intrigue in which the protagonist gets involved, and how his future will turn out depends on the decisions we make during the game.
The plot is less linear than in the previous parts of the series. Tasks can be solved in different ways and their result is reflected in further events.
Baldur's Gate III starts with the character creation process. We can choose the sex and race of the hero (in addition to the people, dwarfs, elves or halflings at our disposal are debuting in the cycle tieflings, drows and githyankis). We then decide on his class, his initial set of skills (or spells), as well as the value of his particular qualities, i.e. his strength, dexterity, endurance, intelligence, wisdom and charisma. Following the example of the earlier parts of the Baldur's Gate series, we must also choose its alignment - from the lawful good to the chaotic evil). What's interesting, the authors have also created several pre-defined characters, which have an additional, specially prepared plot line. If we decide to create our own hero, these characters can become members of our team.
As in the previous parts of the series, the action is observed in the isometric view. In the vast world you will find both cities, villages and idyllic open airs, as well as horrifying underground. Although we start the game alone, other characters quickly start to join us; there can be four people in our team in total.
The driving force behind the game are tasks pushing the story forward, accompanied by numerous side missions. During the conversations, the camera shows their participants up close, while the dialogue system brings to mind the one from the first part of the Dragon Age series. The authors decided on an interesting solution, as the dialogues were written as if the player was addressing the master of the game; thus, we get a general description of the statement and the accompanying emotions or actions of our hero. It is also worth mentioning that some of the statements our hero says are blocked; to be able to use them, we have to successfully pass a test for a specific attribute. The dice is also used for other activities. For example, in order to discover one of the secrets we come across during the exploration, the game makes a throw on the perception of our hero, and when the specter of imminent death hovers over him, the last resort for him is a defensive throw against death.
Talking about dying, the clashes with enemies in turn-based mode plays an important role in the game. Unlike the Divnity series, the combat system is based on the fifth edition of the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, thus increasing the role of randomness and dice throwing during battles. Before each fight, a throw at the initiative is made, determining which side of the conflict will make the first move; the exceptions are the moments when we manage to surprise our enemies, in which we always have priority. In each round, participants have the ability to move (limited by their movement speed), an action like attack or casting a spell (whether or not we hit also determines the virtual dice throw), as well as a bonus action.
During the fight, the key to success is not only skillful use of each team member's strengths, but also making use of the opportunities offered by the environment. For example, a flammable substance spilled on the floor can be set on fire, selected objects can be moved (if a given character has enough strength), and damaged bridges can be completely destroyed (burying enemies standing on them). In addition, the terrain plays an important role, which makes it worthwhile, for example, to position units fighting at a distance higher in order to give them an additional advantage.
As we progress, our team gains experience points and advances to the next levels. Unlike the previous parts of the series, where the next "levels" of individual members of the team were gaining independently of each other, this time the whole team is promoted synchronously. Although it happens quite rarely, the difference after each such promotion is clearly felt.
You can play Baldur's Gate III alone or in co-op mode.
Baldur's Gate III is based on a new version (4.0) of the technology that powered the previous Larian Studios games ( Divinity Engine). The character models are detailed, as well as locations. The effects accompanying the use of spells are also impressive. Although the game is colourful, in comparison with the Original Sin series the colours are still clearly subdued.
Expectations: 7.0 / 10 calculated out of 482 players' votes.