I've waited a long time for Baldur's Gate 3, because 20 years have passed since the release of the last part in the fantasy RPG series. Sure, I got the early access version of the third part and have had a lot of fun in the fantasy world of the Forgotten Realms ever since. But the role play makes me aware of one thing: D&D has changed a lot.
I got my first experience with Dungeons & Dragons in the 1980s when I got the pen and paper role-playing game. The red basic box of the rules is still with me in a cardboard box in the basement. The pages are worn out, the old character sheets testify to the adventures of great heroes who have now scattered to the wind. What did I love to play D&D with my friends. We met almost every weekend, fought orcs, liberated villages, or messed with dragons.
On the computer, too, I sank into the fantasy worlds of Pool of Radiance, Champions of Krynn, Eye of the Beholder or Dark Sun: Shattered Lands and Ravenloft. Baldur's Gate 1 appeared after I graduated from high school and started my studies – so there was enough time to dive deeply into the Forgotten Realms again. BG 2 came out when I was already married. Even today I still like to think back to characters like Minsc and his hamster Boo or the sinister Jon Irenicus.
Source: Larian Studios
A modern gaming experience
When I start Baldur's Gate 3, I experience very exciting adventures again and meet interesting characters, but every time I realize that D&D is no longer what it used to be. The intro of the RPG alone makes this very clear to me. A buddy I played D&D with before said to me that after the intro, BG3 looked like an Avengers movie to him. And he is right in my eyes. It feels like D&D on speed.
Action as far as the eye can see and we get to see very dangerous creatures – dragons and mind flayers in flying ships. In addition: As interesting as the characters you meet are, I keep asking myself whether there are no longer any "normal" characters. Does everyone have to carry around not just one, but several secrets? Do the characters' background stories have to be so extremely nested? Baldur's Gate 3 throws at me everything that D&D has to offer and that in the first hour. I meet vampires, mind flayers, fly to hell, have to explore dungeons full of deadly traps, defend myself against the undead … It's all fun and very cool, but I remember D&D a little differently.
The leisurely meeting of the heroes in the tavern of a village, the first excursion into the wilderness to dig a goblin camp and the detour to a small dungeon where a monster lives … All of this used to build on one another, little by little, Slowly I was drawn into this world that was getting bigger and more interesting. Over time I met interesting characters who also had a secret … In BG 3, all of this is thrown at me immediately. So that the game does not run out of breath, it turns over with superlatives. Everything gets even wackier, even bigger …
As already mentioned, it's all fun and Baldur's Gate 3 is a really good role-playing game even in the early access phase – but my D&D from earlier is no longer.
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