View Full Version : Playing Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition

Forsaken Lover
07-21-2016, 11:07 AM
Well in all my searches to find out how to do this, everyone was talking about all the great items you can steal from various people, including Drizzt.

But anyway, thank you.

(I used my real name because I don't know any real "setting appropriate" names.)

So, I recently completed Jade Empire and declared it one of BW's best games. It was then pointed out to me I still need to play Baldur's Gate 1 and 2, the latter o fwhich is often heralded as their best title. Well, I've been meaning to play some old RPG s for a while but never got around to it.

I started with Planescape: Torment. Got up to just after Ravel. I kind of hate it. Bored out of my skull. I was told BG was a lot more fun to play so here I am.

So I was originally thinking I'd roll with a Cleric. I think gods being a real thing and "needing" people to venerate them is one of the more intriguing elements of fantasy settings like this. However, when I found that custom portrait you see there, I didn't think i tfit what I was going for. The expression is far too...gloomy to fit a crazy follower of whatever CE deity. No, I wanted something different. I really dig that expression is the thing. It's so...gloomy and I wanted to roll with something that fit that.

Then I found the Song and Silence Mod, adding new "Kits" for Bards. And after that I found Dirgesinger and all was decided from there.

I consulted heavily with Google and other forums on my stat build. Charisma isn't very important in this game but I still want it high for RP purposes. A Bard that isn't extremely alluring isn't doing their job.
Intelligence determines how many spells you can learn or something? Def need that. Also works well for RP purposes as I roll again with a High INT/Low WIS character. I'll get more into that in a bit.
Don't need Strength or much Constitution because this Bard is support/defense

For Weapon Proficiencies I wen twith Shortbow and Sling. I was kinda regretting this when Shank kept kicking my ass because I couldn' thit him most of the time and I only had a long-range weapon (but apparently this doesn' tmatter in this game, anyway) but once I get a real party going, I shouldn't worry about doing direct damage.

Now let's leave all that number-crunching behind and focus on what really matters. Roleplaying.

I was very happy to find that the game automatically supplies you a short biography based on what Class you chose. Things like Skyrim where they just dump you off with no explanation or backstory really irritate me. I have too much of an imagination to work with a completely blank canvass - I can never decide where to start. But here, the game gives me something to work with and I just molded my character around it

From a young age, you were..."different" from other children. You knew it and you had a feeling your foster father and the others knew it, too. What precisely was "different" about you was something you could never put your finger on but it caused you to act out for much of your youth. Reprimands and punishment seemed to do nothing to dissuade your rebellious nature. Then, suddenly, one day it all but immediately stopped. You have long been enraptured by your foster father's countless tales, though not so much for the content as for the art of the telling. Blessed by a world of books, you have surrounded yourself with the ancient legends and endless lore, and developed quite a skill for showmanship. One of the cooks has become quite fond of you and, between recitations of often bawdy poems and songs, has provided you with somewhat haphazard voice instruction. With an outlet for your creativity, and losing yourself in matters of the mind and distant dreams, you "calmed down." That is to say, the surface symptoms the others saw were at last put to rest. As long as you had your tales and your books and the refuge of your own head, you could forget this boring old dump full of people who were squandering away their precious days.

You know little about how you came to be a ward of Gorion's, but over the year's you have gleaned something of your mother's tale from the vague allusions and from the words he sometimes uttered in tear-filled sleep. She was a half-elf from the courts of Ashabenford and a friend of his for many seasons.As you have no memory of her, nor any keepsakes to remind you of her existence, you have come to believe that she died while giving birth to you. While you certainly love to keep your secrets, you resent how even this small bit about your mother was mostly kept from you. and that was to say nothing of how you were completely oblivious about your father. To not know something as vitally important as where you came from might have contributed to the way you are; to those feelings that the world is unstable and might swallow everyone up any moment.

Oh Pada, it was horrible! The man was smelly and he tried to kill me! Somebody call the Wahmbulance! I might have told him what happened but that dialogue option was just insulting and not how my Nikkolas would react at all.

Well that didn't take long. Bit anticlimactic, him dying so fast like that. Sorry foster pops.

Told this guy...Xzar or something to get stuffed when he offered healing potions. "Act of good will?" I was nearly just murdered! Shove your possible poison up your ass. Generally I'm playing a very "frazzled" PC at present. His whole world got turned up side down. I'm thinking of this as a "transitional" phase between the boy of the keep who kept to himself and said all the right things and the more extroverted fellow he is to become. Right now, he's overcome by a torrent of emotion - not so much for Gorion's death but for the death of "myself" and my old life. Despite my lamentations as a Dirgesinger, there will be precious little to miss about that humdrum existence.

So I got to the Friendly Arms Inn and am leaving with my two new, possibly temporary, party members. Nik is "cooling down" and adjusting it. This is something I want to get into with my alignment.

Chaotic Evil is NOT Stupid Evil. It is NOT The Joker. Both of those are ways to define CE but neither "are" CE. Chaotic means to oppose structure, order, regulation and promote freedom above all else. Evil in D&D means to champion the self above all else. Combine the two together and you get someone who believes they should be free to do whatever they please and everyone else be damned. But while people do so love to try and pretend evil has a big scary face and is self-destructive, it's not that simple. While it's true some CE people are shortsighted and barbaric, you can also take a more...philosophical, abstract approach to it. I can see a CE person working on a plan for years if it meant creating the ultimate bomb or weapon to utterly destabilize the world order. Similarly, you do not have to cackle madly and revel in the suffering you cause just because you are CE. I think the "Chaotic Evil Philosopher" as I would call them would approach things in a more subdued fashion. Look at my portrait and read the biography. I am not going to play "YES, YES, YES! PAIN, SUFFERING, BLOOD! YAY!" That's not something I could enjoy or wrap my mind around. No, what my PC is all about is a more nihilistic approach to things. So when my Dirgesinger comes and uses his power to "to teach folk the folly of love, the futility of hope, and the finality of the grave" (http://www.realmshelps.net/charbuild/classes/prestige/general/dirgesinger.shtml) it's less sadistic and more...preacher-like. He is bringing people the truth that they don't want to hear, awakenings feelings and thoughts they don't want to acknowledge.

So, for gameplay talk about the actual gameplay I did. I died to a couple wolves several times. 6 HP? Jesus Christ, I never played an RPG whee I started off that dinky. Then again, I guess HP doesn't get into teh tens of thousands like i tdoes in most JRPGs. And I can't even remember what my HP was in stuff like Dragon Age or KOTOR since I just looked at a bar there. Anyway, my only strategy for them was to run around in circles, try not to get hit, and let Imoen take them out. She seems to do a lot more damage than I do.

In any event, I got two new party members, am off to a mine, I told this old guy to piss off when he was probably the mysterious "E" who wrote the letter to my doomed foster father (I was still in the "shocked" state of mind) , some random fodder guy got killed by what I assume is the main villain Slovakia or whatever. I recall reading a conversation not too long ago about who was better between him and the guy from the next game. I would think it be the BG2 guy but some people were supporting this fellow as the better antagonist. I didn' tpay too much attention 'cuz spoilers. I know nothing about these games.

I am eager to see how this game goes and then to play Baldur's Gate II. This game, it's sort of like the Mass Effect 1 where the sequel was so huge and so popular nobody really talks about what came before. But I'm thoroughly enjoying myself. If BG2 is a true rival to Mass Effect 2 or Best BioWare game, I can't wait to get to tit.

In the meantime, dying to those wolves was more fun than all my time playing Planescape.

07-21-2016, 11:22 AM
Ooh, yay! So hyped for this! :D makes me want to play it again myself!

BG I is certainly underappreciated. Though I think BG II is a much better game overall, it doesn't really have as much impact if you skip on BG I, and now that the EE has fixed most of its more glaring flaws, it can finally be enjoyed for the cool fantasy adventure that it is. This game is much more about the world building, sidequests, etc. than it is about narrative or characters - which is the case in the sequel.

Also, you get to romance somebody in the sequel, and most of those characters appear in this game as well (with the three EE characters introduced here being romanceable in the sequel). I highly recommend you recruit Dorn into your party because not only is he a total beast in combat, but it's also kinda neat how he's the only bisexual option (and the only romance option for male-male pairings) and there is like no hint of stereotype in his character whatsoever. He's an evil, murderous killing machine who will fall in love with anyone regardless of race or gender, and I think that's beautiful. In kind of a twisted way, but still beautiful. From what I get of your character so far, they seem like a good match! :love:

That said, all the potential love interests for the male character are very well written. It's the girls that got shafted in the original release because they only had one guy to romance and he was just awful. Luckily, the romance option number is fairly even now with the Enhanced Editions.

07-21-2016, 04:36 PM
I'm. Actually kind of shocked that you didn't like Planescape, haha. Most everyone I know who plays it instantly falls in love (myself included).

Anyways I'm tempted to buy this. Really tempted. But like, I'm currently playing through BG2 and also DA:O for like the ten zillionth time. Should I really add another expansive CRPG to my backlog??

...yes. The answer is yes, isn't it?

Forsaken Lover
07-23-2016, 05:04 AM
Khalid: (indignant) Gorion would have none of this. 'Tis shameful!

Me: (quizzical) You mean he wouldn't approve of me wandering into random people's houses, trying to Pickpocket them while they slept and then killing them after I fail?

Khalid: Yes, he'd greatly disapprove.

Me: Okay.

Note: this happened in an alternate universe, not canon.

I did get Gorion's disapproval though by rescuing a nice Drow lady in distress from some guy who sounded like a drill sergeant reject. "I SERVE DA FLAMING FIST OF 'MURRICA!" But he's dead now. I don't even know how I died the one time to him since Viconia or whoever seems to be able to knock down enemies so you can wail on them mercilessly. Anywaho, RP Justification for helping her: Intrigue at the drama, wanting to see more. Once the thug marched in championing DA LAW, his fate was sealed and I was on my new lady friend's side. At least for the moment.

Also I just helped her because I have heard the name before and know she's a companion. The more, the merrier.

See, I had died several times to "you have been waylaid by enemies and have to defend yourself!" These seem to be random and I was not ready for them at Level 1. I mostly encounter single enemies normally, maybe a couple Hobgoblins but they are more like free equipment than enemies. Anyway, point being, ambushed by a group of anything right now seems like it's almost guaranteed death. This looks like another idea Dragon Age Origins took...and then dropped in the sequels, thank god.

-drops Sling and Bullets for Viconia, takes control of her to have her pick it up-

Viconia: May darkness prevail.

I think me and her are gonna get on just fine. Moreso than the rest of my narrow-minded companions.

I also want to say good game design here. I was worried about "what if there are important NPC's or companions out in the midle of dungeons/fields?" You guys know me, you know I might wander right by them by mistake. Doubtless enemies will get stronger and just wandering around aimlessly could get me killed so I might be in a rush and miss an important person. But this game, at least right now, is wise enough to make the encounters forced. As long as you wander near her, it triggers automatically. If there are future situations like this, I hope they also are automatic.

So I met one of the new EE companions, Neera. She seems okay in my book but I still had her bugger off for now. Honestly, her voice and general dialogue tone reminds me of Tallis. I wonder if that's what they were going for if her VA just happens to sound like Felicia Day.

Man, what a dick move. This one house in Beregpost is marked on my map so I 'm like" this must be important. Someone to talk to Gonna check it out." All that I found in there wer 3 or 4 Huge Spiders. In a damned house. Maybe, MAYBE I could take on tha tmany out in the wild but in the confines of a building? My Bard dies in mere seconds because you just can't avoid all of them.

Oogie Wisham:That...that Bjornin. I can feel his eyes looking at me. He's a paladin you know. They ain't right in the head. They...they just look at you and you've been judged. What right do they have to do that?
Me: I know what you mean. Pretty high and mighty of 'em!

I generally don't like exclamation responses. They reek of being forced and hamfisted. But this is one of the firs texchanges and dialogue choices I can totally support and feel it's within my character's personality. Is there anything more disgusting than a paladin?

So I only looked at the left half of my screen at my firs tLevel up and saw "0" at the top in terms of points to assign. I only noticed the right half when the stupid other chick leveled up. I have no saves even close to when my PC leveled up. I hope to God not assigning any points isn't going to bite me in the ass. I guess I'll lose out on being better at Pickpocketing or something like that. I hope that is all because I'm prety sure those points are just gone forever now instead of holding over to the next level up.

I'm really fucking pissed off though. I hate when I do stuff like this. I've been slow, methodical, taking my time with this game because it's fun and then I go and do something retarded like this. Fuck. I could just use a Save Editor or something but I have no fucking clue how many ability points you get or if it is determined by class/stats/etc.. I'm not going to assign myself more ability points than I actually got.


"Surface dwellers can be so stupid."

Don't be that way, hun. Saving the cow and earning that point of Reputation will hardly ruin me or our group.

I sometimes wish the game was actively fucking with you, though. Like the Drunk who warns you not to mess with him because he's secretly a powerful Lich. He should have been! And a statue that could be a really powerful warrior or a princess? "Just give me 500 gold and you'll find out!" That should have been a scam. Well, it kinda was, since he charged way too much for the Scroll but point being, Branwen should have just been a statue and the game was punishing you for being dumb and greedy.

With two Clerics in my party though, I am learning the value of things other than Attack. I met this trio of really tough Hobgoblins - they had names and everything - and we were getting destroyed. I thought their leader was the problem but eventually I figured out his helpers were the things really killing me. Melee attacks in this game seem to miss 90% of the time and that's all he had while his assistants had Composite Longbows. Those wrecked my party in seconds if they hit, and they hit a lot more than melee attacks from top Hobgoblin. Anyway, the solution? Command on the two sidekicks, kill them in seconds, and then finish off the leader. Command is fucking awesome. I also had both Viconia and Branwen cast Bless, although I'm unsure if it stacks.

So as of right now, I have a full party. Is this advisable? I know some people online who say "YOU CAN SOLO THIS GAME WITH JUST YOUR CHARACTER!" These are the same types who beat FF1 with just a single White Mage, I assume. They don't understand video games are meant to be fun. Anyway, my question. Since XP is split up among more characters with a full party, everyone levels up much more slowly. This seems like it could be an issue. Recommendations?

So guys, another question. Who's Gorion? What's this about dreams and cravings of power? I don't have time for that irrelevan tshit, I gotta buy more Arrows to shoot at wolves and goblins and skeletons. Seriously, it NEVER ENDS! I was looking for those half-ogre for the paladin I hate (because why not get him something out of thim?) and I kep tmissing them. But I kept finding new areas. And a new map means I need to explore all of it which often leads to ANOTHR new map and more exploration and.... The result is, I ended up fighting this guy named Bassilus and in the course of the crazy fighting with god knows how many undead, Branwen dead. With Bassilus and most zombies/skeletons dead, I ran away, Rested/healed, and came back to finish the job and loot. I hope that's a "fair" strategy. Anyway, I didn't know this was even a sidequest thing. I just went to the Temple to revive Branwen and the guy is like "you did us a solid, man" and, BOOM, 5000 Gold! There goes all my money worries for the time being.

Met Drizzt. I couldn't Pickpocket him. I can't Pickpocket ANYONE. Fucking ridiculous. How much higher could my skill be at this point? Is it because I missed those points? At last Level up, I didn't even get to choose points to assign like the thief girl does. It just auto-gave me a few points in PP.

Met Dorn. Seems alright. Still, I want to collect as many "OG BG" party members as i can before I dabble with the newcomers.

Viconia: So after I first joined you and we first Rested, I told you I really wanted to head to those Mines on the double.
Me: I know.

Jaheira: And I said Gorion was a man of action and wouldn't be dillydalling like this when we went to that one bridge place.

Me: I know.

Imoen: So why is it Day 43 and we're just now getting to these mines?

Me: There was much to learn about the troubles in the region. Only fools rush in - which is why I'm not surprised some of you wanted to rush in. Besides, I figured information-finding and resource-gathering was of pivotal importance. Jaheira and Branwan, you got that nice new set of Plate Mail. The rest of you have good armor and equipment and I even got a Sling+1 for you, Viconia. All because I "dilly-dallied." And hell, why are Branwen and Viconia - who are far more help than you first three dunderheads - even here to help us on our quest? Because I took the smart path. So you can shut it Jaheira about questioning my leadership, because I'm clearly very good at it.

Two days people. Two days of wandering, fighting, gathering everything I could. But I finally made it to the Nashkel Mines. Everyone is Level 3 except our Gorion's old friends. Just more ways they disappoint me. Also why are they the only ones I've seen get party banter? I know it wasn't a real big thing until BG2 but I thought there was some in this game but so far, I just got a random moment between Khalid an Jaheira.

I fucking love this game. Dialogue choices could be better but man oh man, it is so much fun. Maybe there will be better choices in future. Right now though I'm scratching my head at all the people wandering about talking about troubles in the region. Not Bandits or whatever but tensions with what I gather is another country. This is where my lack of knowledge on the setting kinda kills me, I guess.

07-23-2016, 06:28 AM
Nah, you get enough text in the game overtime to explain everything to you. You really don't need to have any knowledge of this setting at all to get everything out of it.

Also, the reason Khalid and Jaheira are lower levels is because they are both dual-class, so both of their classes gain levels at a lower rate, but they get to reap the benefits of both. Meaning they are actually on par with the others.

No wait, only Jaheira's dual-class. Khalid is just a little slow.

I'm glad you're enjoying it so much :D

Forsaken Lover
07-23-2016, 09:44 AM
Khalid is indeed very "slow." I've heard this game has something like 25 companions, not counting the new ones. Once I find a replacement for him, he can eat dirt.

A Thought on Classes:

I'm already looking ahead to BG2 and again I am thinking I might have to seek out a mod for additional classes/kits.

See, here's the thing. Character Creation is a really big deal for me. I got BG1 in the morning and I spnet the entire rest of the day plotting my character both gameplaywise and RP-wise. I read up on deities before I abandoned the idea of Cleric, I looked up posts on stat builds, etc.. I put as much thought as I could into making my character work from every angle.

And that's why I "needed" this mod. A regular, plain-old Class just isn't enough for me. What does "Fighter" say about my character? Or Thief? Or some other generic name? It says nothing, it's worthless. These specializations or kits or what-have-you are invaluable to me for getting inside the head of my character. Take Cleric for example. What is vanilla Cleric? Nothing. Clerics gain their power from the divine? Great! So who exactly does the Cleric serve? Why are they a cleric in the first place? Being a normal Cleric answers none of these vital questions. The Divine Remix mod offered a ton of choices on gods to choose though and that means much more variety in RP options.

Although I'm still not certain why Clerics don't have to be the same alignment as their god. Why on Earth would a LE person follow Talos?

Anyway, back to where I started. I'm looking ahead to BG2's Classes and stuff and again the options seem so painfully limited. I did play Neverwinter Nights once - I got to just after the Character Creation screen (which means I played the game for like an hour, lol) and I remember it offering much better and more interesting choices.

07-23-2016, 03:27 PM
That's because NWN was based on AD&D 3rd edition, meaning they added prestige classes. It's still cool that they added kits in BG2 and the EE. NWN wasn't too good though, sadly.