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PrimeJunta

Let's Play Baldur's Gate 2, and reflect on Pillars of Eternity

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Having just finished IWD, and, with Sensuki's able advice, finally learned how to combat properly in the IE games, I fired up my first-ever IE game acquaintance, Baldur's Gate 2. It's been many years since I last played it, and I'm pretty hazy about the details.

 

I remember almost quitting in early Chapter 2 because it seemed like wherever I turned I got mercilessly murdered, being incredibly frustrated with some of the encounters, overwhelmed with quests in the tavern in the slums, and delighted at the sheer range and quantity and variety of things it was throwing at me, what felt like for ever and ever until the thing ended. I played it through twice back then, and partway through a few other times.

 

But it's been a long time, and I really don't remember much about it, other than cheesing the Firkraag fight by lobbing a Feeblemind at him and reloading until it bit.

 

I've also been playing a lot of BB392 lately, so I will be reflecting on how playing BG2 feels relative to it. Unlike the IWD thread, I won't just be discussing combat and mechanics here, but rather the whole experience.

 

I'm not going to do a blow-by-blow Let's Play because it would get way too wordy. Instead, I'll make notes of my impressions, comparing to what I remember from my previous playthroughs years back, and P:E where applicable.

 

With that preamble, onward, to Adventure.

 

Rolling with an Inquisitor this time. My previous playthroughs were as a caster of some sort, I don't quite remember which, and a kensai/mage because I heard that's a really powerful combo (as indeed it was).

 

First, the writing.

 

Gack. It. Is. Cheesy!

 

The thing starts up with a joke about a hamster up a ... differently abled berserker's butt. Jaheira's and Minsc's dialog is grating and dumb, respectively, although Yoshimo's a bro. And Aerie, whom I recruited a bit later, is so squeaky that I can barely stand it.

 

Then, as devices to drive the plot forward, I'm offered a choice between "really wanting to save Imoen" and "really wanting to punch Irenicus in the groin." Not very imaginative. So far, the writing has been just frankly bad, like something a 15-year-old DM would come up with. (Speaking from experience here, I used to be a 15-year-old DM.)

 

This is one area where P:E is clearly on an entirely different level. There, we have characters and factions with understandable motivations; not someone who's muhahaha evil because he wants to rule the world, but someone who does some frankly pretty awful stuff out of justifiable rage. I seriously can't wait to see how the real thing is going to be -- good writing always was near the top of my list of things I want to see in a game.

 

Second, content density. Josh in particular has gotten a quite a lot of flack over saying that he doesn't like the content density in BG2, Chapter 2 in particular. Which is where I am. Which is actually kinda funny because Irenicus's dungeon -- ostensibly Chapter 1 -- felt more like a prologue, really. But I digress.

 

I haven't visited much of Athkatla yet, but at least the Copper Coronet has way too much content density. The minute I'm in through the door, it feels like a dozen people want to fight me/recruit me to defend a keep/recruit me to clear out monsters (**** you Firkraag!)/recruit me to raid a tomb/another tomb/other stuff. That's just too much. The game really would have been improved if they had spread out all that content somewhat. It felt overwhelming, confusing, and... yes, it breaks mah immershun.

 

So at least when it comes to the Copper Coronet, I'm with Josh -- there is such a thing as too much content density.

 

Nothing too important by way of encounters yet at this point. The slaver base was a good fight, but compared to the stuff in IWD it was easy-peasy. I think I dropped a Confusion on the group and then Dire Charmed the slaver captain and had him murder his crew, just because I could and I'm a mean hmm-hmm Lawful Good inquisitor who really doesn't like slavers.

 

This, however, is because now I know how the system works. My first attempts at BG2 were incredibly frustrating. I was murdered by the golems in Irenicus's dungeon because I didn't know you needed blunt weapons to fight them. I was murdered by the beasties in Aerie's tent because I didn't know you needed magic weapons to fight them (and had sold all of mine because I didn't have proficiencies for them). A bit later I was murdered by beholders, vampires, and Baron Firkraag. (**** you, Baron Firkraag! I'm coming for you this time!)

 

I don't think the solution is to dumb things down. However, a game like this really needs not only a good manual (which BG2 had), but a good tutorial -- an extended (and skippable) prologue that introduces you to the mechanics, basic gotchas ("some monsters are immune to some types of damage, or need magic weapons with a minimum + something to hit"), and basic tactics ("it's often best to rush in with your best fighter to murder the enemy caster, as they are juicy and nutricious.")

 

This is one area where I think there has been genuine progress, and games have been better for it.

 

The sewer and Copper Coronet maps were annoying; narrow corridors hard to path through, with angles that didn't really make much sense. The slaver base one was cool, and I really dig the variety. Every map is different, which is great. However, the degree of polish in the maps is noticeably lower than in IWD or the P:E backer beta.

 

Also, the Lilarcor puzzle. Other than being completely contrived like most of these things are (srsly, Excalibur in a city sewer?), it was a pretty okay puzzle. Apparently Iggy the Inquisitor is a bit of a racist as he murdered some inoffensive kobolds and a carrion crawler without too many qualms. If he has any, I'm sure some fervent prayer will sort it right out.

 

And that's about where I am at this point. Nalia wants me to go clear out her stronghold REALLY RIGHT NOW NOW NOW but has apparently been perfectly happy to tag along dealing with the slavers so far, so I think I'll go do that next. (Does this thing have timed companion quests like BG1 BTW? Don't remember. Those really bit me in the behind before. Could barely keep anyone in the party.)

 

So, at this point... coming back to this feels like harkening back to a simpler, more innocent time, where you enter a 10 x 10 foot room with an orc guarding a chest. After IWD, the gameplay is enjoyable from the get-go; on my first encounters with it years ago however it was horrid. The Copper Coronet throws way too much content at you at once. And... yeah, it's fun, and I can't wait to continue.

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I have a project. It's a tabletop RPG. It's free. It's a work in progress. Find it here: www.brikoleur.com

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1. You are comparing main quest with side quests of PoE. And comparing the opening of it vs start, middle and end of side quests of PoE. Don't you think it is unfair? "Find my missing daughter for money" is even less interesting if you look at it just from that one part.

Also the main quest start is about "save your sister" or "take revenge on the guy that tortured you for who knows how long". It is as good of a start for a sequel as it needs at that part of the game.

 

2. BG1 is a tutorial for BG2. Bioware never meant for people to play BG2 directly. And even if you did, between Irenicus dungeon and manual (it was normal to read the manual then) you learned all you needed to learn. If still a problem, you could lower the difficulty.

 

3. As for Copper Coronet, yes it does feel a bit like that. Good thing most quests there are out of town and as such most players ignore those anyways.

Edited by archangel979

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Mmm... no, that's not really what I'm comparing. I'm comparing the way various characters have been written. Lord Harond, for example, has entirely understandable motivations for what he's doing. So does the character behind the whole thing. Each of them is written with a distinct voice and personality. You may -- probably do, if you have in any way conventional morality -- find what they're doing abhorrent, but you can still understand why they're doing it.

 

Compare this to Kalas in Aerie's tent, for example, or Irenicus. One is your standard clichéd power-hungry evil villain with an awesome voice actor, the other is your standard batspit crazy villain with a silly voice actor. No depth at all to them.


I have a project. It's a tabletop RPG. It's free. It's a work in progress. Find it here: www.brikoleur.com

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Irenicus is doing stuff for a good reason (let me not spoil it since you don't remember it all). It is hard to understand him as a commoner as his power and way of thinking is beyond ours. Lord Harond is a simple guy with easily to understand motivations. That is why his motivations seem better, but they are not.

 

As for the guy from the tent, he is crazy . You don't need to understand all crazy people. He is also a typical story of a someone not fitting in gone crazy, he might be any of the kids that went crazy and did all those awful school shootings.

Edited by archangel979

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You might consider how much crpgs have changed since bg2.

Since kotor and dragon age, people are more concerned w/ character depth and verisimilitude. We now want our characeters to be nuanced and reactive. This spills over into quest givers and villans , to an extent.

Bg2 is about showcasing the world, showing you new and different enemies and world spaces. D&d is deep in the lore department, and the npcs exist to move you to these next fights/zones. Sure, they're a bit hackneyed and melodramatic, but I feel like people didn't care as much back then.

In short, nowadays characters trump narrative (dragon ago inquisition). In the ie days, characters were secondary to pushing forward the narrative

 

It'll be interesting to see what medium POE finds because, at some point, you do have to choose. Do you sit listening to the quest giver talk for 15 minutes about his feelings before he gives you the quest (well rounded character) or do you get straight to the quest and focus on giving multiple solutions,

Edited by jones092201@gmail.com

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I agree that BG2 was not the example of world best design for quests and NPCs, but it was nowhere as bad as it is trying to be shown.

 

I am sure there are better examples than what PrimeJunta mentioned to showcase this. Irenicus is nearest to a God you can get as a mortal. Why does a player expect him to have same kind of regular morality and drive that one Lord Harold has. Lord Harold wants something that Irenicus gets with one spell. It is like telling me the beggar on the street is more complex than Bill Gates.

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So at least when it comes to the Copper Coronet, I'm with Josh -- there is such a thing as too much content density.

 

Quoted For Truth!

 

I'm one of these guys that enjoyed BG1 wildness areas precisely because those were almost empty.

 

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@PrimeJunta

Maybe we should wait for the final PoE game to be released, play it to the end and then, if we haven't done it recently, (re)play BG2 THEN we make comparisons. Unless you want to open a conversation about BG2 alone.

 

btw, I don't believe there is a "proper" way to play IE games. I don't believe there is a "proper" way to play any game in general to be honest. I was a master rpg "noob" when I first played BG2 and I managed pretty well. And after I got more into its rules (don't know how long it took me to dig that the lower the armor class the better) I had no problems with fights (even though I didn't do much complicated things). So I guess playstyle is subjective.

Edited by Sedrefilos

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Compare this to Kalas in Aerie's tent, for example, or Irenicus. One is your standard clichéd power-hungry evil villain with an awesome voice actor, the other is your standard batspit crazy villain with a silly voice actor. No depth at all to them.

It's Kalah original.gif and the voice acting is appropriate since he's a gnome. As for him being crazy... I think almost all gnomes in IE games were nuts just some were also dangerous.

 

It's true that Irenicus was power-hungry but I wouldn't call it his defining feature and I wouldn't call him clichéd. What made him stand out? First, he and Bodhi were way more bitter and openly cynical than most video game villains. Second, Irenicus wasn't going to destroy the world. He just wanted to ascend to deity status. His methods inevitably made him the protagonist's enemy but his motivation was understandable.

Edited by prodigydancer
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1. You are comparing main quest with side quests of PoE. And comparing the opening of it vs start, middle and end of side quests of PoE. Don't you think it is unfair? "Find my missing daughter for money" is even less interesting if you look at it just from that one part.

Also the main quest start is about "save your sister" or "take revenge on the guy that tortured you for who knows how long". It is as good of a start for a sequel as it needs at that part of the game.

 

2. BG1 is a tutorial for BG2. Bioware never meant for people to play BG2 directly. And even if you did, between Irenicus dungeon and manual (it was normal to read the manual then) you learned all you needed to learn. If still a problem, you could lower the difficulty.

 

Yup.

 

Baldur's Gate 2 is a direct sequel to Baldur's Gate, and a direct continuation of that storyline. It's one of the great things about that game: that it was a real sequel. Something that is sadly so rare in the gaming world.

 

Obviously it's too late PrimeJunta, but you'd likely have appreciated the writing and characters more from the get go had you played and completed the original Baldur's Gate before playing BG2. In fact, that you'd even start a fresh game of BG2 and not start your new adventure in BG1 makes me shake my head to an extent as you're missing out on the grander experience and how it was designed to be played.

 

I certainly would not say the writing for the BG series was bad. It doesn't have the depth of Planescape Torment but it was great for what it was. It was a step above everything else out there at the time it came out, and it's still a step above the vast majority of everything that has come out since.

 

And on content density.... while I much preferred the open world of BG1 to BG2, the content density of BG2's city didn't seem any more dense to me than BG1's. It's just perhaps that in BG2 you get to that city a lot quicker so a new player is more like to be overwhelmed (but again, BG2 isn't meant to be played having not played BG1). A city should be dense in content. And another of the great things about BG2 was that though it allowed someone to play having not played BG1 it was designed for the veteran player that played BG1. That the designers didn't try and hold everyone's hand was a good thing, and contributed to making BG2 a better game than it would have been had they tried to (an all too common design decision uberflaw these days). And that said, the manual was top notch.

Edited by Valsuelm
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I enjoyed the Copper Coronet Content Density. That stuff is unique to BG2 and you'll never find it anywhere else, unfortunately.

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Honestly I've always considered Irenicus to be a pretty great villain. He has motives that are personal (not your average "I want to rule the world" ****e), and he doesn't even hate you on a personal level. He's definitely not your classic "mwahahah I'm evil" boss.

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"Time is not your enemy. Forever is."

— Fall-From-Grace, Planescape: Torment

"It's the questions we can't answer that teach us the most. They teach us how to think. If you give a man an answer, all he gains is a little fact. But give him a question, and he'll look for his own answers."

— Kvothe, The Wise Man's Fears

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Hey Junta. You've brought up points that would take hours and hours to properly respond to. Maybe when I have more time I will. But this morning I only want to focus on the "cheesy 15 year old DM writing" part:

This is one area where P:E is clearly on an entirely different level.

And you're guessing. (probably a safe guess, but still a guess) This beta does not actually showcase some huge difference in writing quality. Lets take a look at the quests in it.

 

-An Ogre is stealing my piglets!

-My daughter is missing!

-Hey, can you do me a favor and kill one of my faction enemies?!

-Go fetch me a dragon egg please!

 

This is no different than the Copper coronet quests. It's the exact same complexity level as: free us! (Hendack's quest), Or Help me secure my noble lands (Fiirkrag's quest) Or, I need a hero to drive the trolls out of my castle (Nalia's quest). never mind that at least these quests are filled with twisting plotlines and tons of fleshed out content once you actually start doing them

 

I do find it someone ironic, though, that you would cite BG2's main plot as an example of overly simplistic, flawed writing. It's about someone experimenting with (and stealing) your soul. Maybe PoE will approach that exact topic in a more mature, complex manner, but that will only account for about 50% of what *good* story telling ever is. A more important question is: Will PoE have a more memorable villain than Jon Irenicus? We can always fantasize, hope, pray etc. that it will. Because that's a pretty tall order.

Edited by Stun

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Hey Junta. You've brought up points that would take hours and hours to properly respond to. Maybe when I have more time I will. But this morning I only want to focus on the "cheesy 15 year old DM writing" part:

This is one area where P:E is clearly on an entirely different level.

And you're guessing. (probably a safe guess, but still a guess) This beta does not showcase any "different level". Lets take a look at the quests in it

 

 

-An Ogre is stealing my piglets!

-My daughter is missing!

-Hey, can you do me a favor and kill one of my faction enemies?!

-Go fetch me a dragon egg please!

 

This is no different than the Copper coronet quests. It's the exact same complexity level as: free us! (Hendack's quest), Or Help me secure my noble lands (Fiirkrag's quest) Or, I need a hero to drive the trolls out of my castle (Nalia's quest). never mind that at least these quests are filled with twisting plotlines and tons of fleshed out content once you actually start doing them

 

I do find it someone ironic, though, that you would cite BG2's main plot as an example of overly simplistic, flawed writing. It's about someone experimenting with (and stealing) your soul. Maybe PoE will approach that exact topic in a more mature, complex manner, but that will only account for about 50% of what *good* story telling ever is. Will PoE have a more memorable villain than Jon Irenicus? We can always fantasize, hope, pray etc. that it will. Because that's a pretty tall order.

 

 

 

 

Please use spoiler tags for any discussion about the details of PoE's content. Yea.. .I (and no doubt others) don't want to know even the details you posted. If I did, I'd be playing the beta and reading the beta forums. ;)

 

That said, there aren't supposed to be any spoilers at all in this forum.

Edited by Valsuelm

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Baldur's Gate 2 is a direct sequel to Baldur's Gate, and a direct continuation of that storyline. It's one of the great things about that game: that it was a real sequel.

This isn't true at all. BG2 is the biggest red herring in RPG history. It's one giant side quest. The BG story line is about Aluando's prophesy, remember? Specifically, the Chaos that Bhaal's progeny will wreak upon the world. Well? BG2's plot has nothing to do with that. It's a pit stop on the road. An uninvolved, peripheral meddler (Irenicus), with his own totally unrelated motivations, temporarily halts the road trip...with a kidnapping. It isn't until Throne of Bhaal that the BG plot gets continued. Edited by Stun
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Baldur's Gate 2 is a direct sequel to Baldur's Gate, and a direct continuation of that storyline. It's one of the great things about that game: that it was a real sequel.

This isn't true at all. BG2 is the biggest red herring in RPG history. It's one giant side quest. The BG story line is about Aluando's prophesy, remember? Specifically, the Chaos that Bhaal's progeny will wreak upon the world. Well? BG2's plot has nothing to do with that. It's a pit stop on the road. An uninvolved, peripheral meddler (Irenicus), with his own totally unrelated motivations, temporarily halts the road trip...with a kidnapping. It isn't until Throne of Bhaal that the BG plot gets continued.

 

 

Hardly a side quest.

 

You ignore that Irenicus was interested in the main character and Imoen in large part because of their import to Aluando's prophecy, and I'll leave it at that as to not spoil things for the OP who is on a playthrough.

 

Also, whenever I refer to BG I also include Tales of the Sword Coast, just as whenever I refer to BG2 I include The Throne of Bhaal, unless the discussions is about specifics of the expansions vs. the games, and when discussing the overall story this really doesn't factor. Most people here who have played and completed one have played them all, and I assume that when most playthrough them again they also play the expansions. To do otherwise is akin to starting a book a third of the way through it or putting it down before you reach the final page. It's common when discussing most games to assume people also play the latest expansions (ie: If I discuss Civilization 4, I'm referring to all of it's expansions as well unless specifically state otherwise). Obviously, apparently you don't assume that. So I'll keep this nitpicking in mind when next I post.

Edited by Valsuelm

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I am interested a lot about "how to properly fight in IE games" part just to compare it to my own experiences :)

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You ignore that Irenicus was interested in the main character and Imoen in large part because of their import to Aluando's prophecy,

Nope. There isn't a shred of evidence that suggests Irenicus knows anything about Aluando's prophesy or that he even cares. He does not mention it to you, or Bodhi, or Elisime, Or Yoshimo, or Saemon Havarian, or the matron mother. It's not mentioned anywhere in his journals. And the PC's part in the prophesy has nothing to do with his motives and actions anyway. He only knows that you have Bhaal's blood. And even that only matters to him because Bhaal is a god and God essense = immortality, according to his strange scientific theories. (which is, in itself proof that he's not familiar with Aluando's prophesy, since Bhaal DIED to start the whole thing)

 

Bioware LITERALLY put the whole Prophesy on hold to give us BG2. And, By the Way, that was the intent. Throne of Bhaal was not originally planned to be an expansion pack. It was supposed to be the 3rd game in a trilogy, but since their new Publisher (Atari) was pressuring them to get Neverwinter Nights out the door, they had to cut things short.

Edited by Stun

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Yup.

 

Baldur's Gate 2 is a direct sequel to Baldur's Gate, and a direct continuation of that storyline. It's one of the great things about that game: that it was a real sequel. Something that is sadly so rare in the gaming world.

 

Obviously it's too late PrimeJunta, but you'd likely have appreciated the writing and characters more from the get go had you played and completed the original Baldur's Gate before playing BG2. In fact, that you'd even start a fresh game of BG2 and not start your new adventure in BG1 makes me shake my head to an extent as you're missing out on the grander experience and how it was designed to be played.

 

I certainly would not say the writing for the BG series was bad. It doesn't have the depth of Planescape Torment but it was great for what it was. It was a step above everything else out there at the time it came out, and it's still a step above the vast majority of everything that has come out since.

 

And on content density.... while I much preferred the open world of BG1 to BG2, the content density of BG2's city didn't seem any more dense to me than BG1's. It's just perhaps that in BG2 you get to that city a lot quicker so a new player is more like to be overwhelmed (but again, BG2 isn't meant to be played having not played BG1). A city should be dense in content. And another of the great things about BG2 was that though it allowed someone to play having not played BG1 it was designed for the veteran player that played BG1. That the designers didn't try and hold everyone's hand was a good thing, and contributed to making BG2 a better game than it would have been had they tried to (an all too common design decision uberflaw these days). And that said, the manual was top notch.

 

I recently played through BG1 as well. I didn't care for it much, frankly, but I'm pretending it happened and my character just changed classes in the meantime. :p

 

I agree that the whole Bhaalspawn idea is a cool one. However I do maintain that everything else about the series -- with occasional exceptions here and there -- is really bad writing.

 

I also maintain that if you don't recognize it as such, you've never actually come across good writing, and simply don't know what writing can actually be. Which is rather sad really.

 

Anyway, continuing my epic quest to save Imoen/punch Irenicus in the nuts.

 

Nalia finally reminded me that there was something something keep, so I decided to get there post-haste. And damn, content density again. Got a random encounter where there was some unconscious dude whom I revived with a Cure Light Wounds, who wanted to be taken somewhere really fast because he's poisoned so ... mmmmhh... fine, I'll do that. Did. And every damn time I got waylaid by somebody. This actually prompted my first reload because one of the waylays was one of those encounters I hate -- somehow I was entirely surrounded and mixed in with baddies, who croaked Aerie before I had time to hit the pause key. She wasn't in the best of health because I wasn't resting, being in a hurry to get to the keep. And of course Raise Dead (or Jaheira's equivalent) doesn't work on elves. So, reload. 

 

Honestly, these encounters are just bad. It's one thing to assault a mage's home or villains castle, or even be tricked into an ambush via a dialog. But being plopped into something like that -- literally already in melee with the baddies -- just when you're traveling from point A to B is a sucker punch. Unfair, lazy way to make something appear 'challenging.' Bad BG2. Bad!

 

Moving on. Arrived at the keep. While her dialog is, as usual for BG/2, written really badly and way over the top, at least there's some thought been put into her character. She's a noble rebelling against the stodgy classist ways of her family, but can't help being classist herself. I'll give a B- for effort there, writing-wise, but so far that's about the high point as far as that goes.

 

More Irenicus dreams. Damn that voice actor is brilliant. He can say "You will suffer!" like he means it, although it has got to be the cheesiest villain line ever.

 

I hate hate hate HATE the inventory. Seems half the time I'm in the game, all I'm doing is sorting inventory. What's more, the game throws mountains of magical loot at me. Also, the only container I have is a gem bag. At least in IWD I had several of them, plus potion bags, scroll cases, an ammo belt, and eventually a bag of holding. FUUUUbad. Yuck.

 

At this point, making my way into the keep. At least here they're telling you how to kill trolls. Good job. Wish they had done that with golems in the Irenicus dungeon instead of beating poor hapless 2001 me over the head with them.

 

Also, hate hate HATE the stealth system. "Hide in shadows failed." Wait. Wait. Wait. Try again. "Hide in shadows failed." Repeat until succeeds. This is why I don't bother scouting until I have a thief with 100% hide in shadows one way or the other, it's just too bleeding tedious.

 

Mood at this point: mildly annoyed at the inventory and stealth, enjoying the cheesy writing although probably not like the writers intended me to, very much wanting to continue. Which I will do now.


I have a project. It's a tabletop RPG. It's free. It's a work in progress. Find it here: www.brikoleur.com

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You ignore that Irenicus was interested in the main character and Imoen in large part because of their import to Aluando's prophecy,

False. There isn't a shred of evidence that Irenicus knows anything about Aluando's prophesy or that he even cares. He does not mention it to you, or Bodhi, or Elisime, Or Yoshimo, or Saemon Havarian, or the matron mother. It's not mentioned anywhere in his journals. And the PC's part in the prophesy has nothing to do with his motives and actions anyway.

 

He Only knows that you have Bhaal's blood. And even that only matters to him because Bhaal is a god and God essense = immortality, according to his strange scientific theories. (which is, in itself proof that he's not familiar with Aluando's prophesy, since Bhaal DIED to start the whole thing)

 

 

Not false. You misread what I wrote. "Irenicus was interested in the main character and Imoen in large part because of their import to Aluando's prophecy," Their import and significance in Aluando's prophecy is that they have Bhaal's blood. Perhaps I could have communicated it in a clearer manner, but then again you seem to like to argue for the sake of arguing and nitpick, so I doubt I'll make you happy.

 

That Irenicus does or doesn't know about the prophecy is somewhat irrelevant, as the prophecy itself isn't the main focus of the story (the very nature of prophecy generally means it almost never is the focus of any story). What's relevant is what the characters do, and insofar as the overarching storyline of the spawn of Bhaal (that which makes the main character the main character) the fact that he is Bhaal's spawn is central to the plot of Baldur's Gate 2 even before The Throne of Bhaal chapter is reached.

 

And all that said, the story of the original Baldur's Gate was about more than just Aluando's prophecy. If you want to focus on that, that's your perogative, but it's akin to reading The Godfather and thinking the story is only about Vito. There's quite a bit more to it than that.

Edited by Valsuelm

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@stun

 

Baldur Gate 2' s story was masterpiece and it wasn't simple neither.

 

it's not every game you play will have a good/bad guy chasing a mad wizard with asperger's disorder

 

Irenicus was actually refreshing villain for bg 2 time, and even in bg 1 you could see irenicus was a well flesh out character in BG universe

 

Just go to the cloakwood in Bg 1 and speak to a fat lolth wantobe

 

Even if irenicus wasn't part of Aluando's prophesy, it 's not like Gorian ward didn't have a life outside of the prophesy and Irenicus didn't have hidden motives.

Edited by Scottfree6000

I don't normally date planetouched girls, but when I do the Tiefling is already in the sack 

 

stay rolling my friends!  :fdevil: 

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You are nitpicking Stun. He and everyone is talking about blood of Bhaal. It is directly connected with the prophecy. And the game is not about the prophecy but about your character. The prophecy is just backstory.

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Honestly, these encounters are just bad. It's one thing to assault a mage's home or villains castle, or even be tricked into an ambush via a dialog. But being plopped into something like that -- literally already in melee with the baddies -- just when you're traveling from point A to B is a sucker punch. Unfair, lazy way to make something appear 'challenging.' Bad BG2. Bad!

I thought you said you were a DM.

 

Did you used to just skip the dozen or so pages in the DM's guide devoted to random encounters tables and the whole "Surprise" mechanic?

 

Besides, those encounters you're talking about were a direct response to a major gripe/flaw leveled at BG1 - specifically the faceless, nameless, storyless, rewardless and overly frequent random encounters that occurred on map travel in the first game. Here in BG2, you get waylaid by a group of named enemies and that leads to one of Chapter 2's major questlines. Not to mention the loot! (Arbane's sword, anyone?)

Edited by Stun
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2. BG1 is a tutorial for BG2. Bioware never meant for people to play BG2 directly. And even if you did, between Irenicus dungeon and manual (it was normal to read the manual then) you learned all you needed to learn. If still a problem, you could lower the difficulty.

 

Neither BG1 nor Irenicus dungeon teach how to efficiently handle a mage hiding behind several layers of defensive buffs, and lowering the difficulty barely helps on that point. While the manual does give all the info needed, it's just buried in the huge spell list.

 

I am interested a lot about "how to properly fight in IE games" part just to compare it to my own experiences :)

 

Whatever works.

I half remember my first completed BG2 playthrough more than ten years ago, when I never cast buffs or status effect, brute-forced enemy mages' defensive buffs or waited for them to wear off on their own. Replaying now, with all my fancy Stoneskin, Chaos, True Sight, Breach and Pierce Magic, I wonder how I managed to finish it back then. I think that was thanks to spell books filled to the brim with summoning spells, a tactic I borrowed from my previous BG1 playthrough.

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