What are your impressions of the early access?

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rorie

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#1 rorie  Staff  Online

I wrote this as a joke email to the Bombcast because it sounded like they might be thin on content but they didn't use it so here you go!

Hey I know this game just hit Early Access but I was wondering if any of you all had a chance to give it a whirl yet? It's still a bit early to judge based on first impressions, but here are some thoughts:

1. Game looks real dope. It's got a lot of pop-in and missing lighting and stuff like that, but the character faces are exceptional and it looks really good environmentally. I'm playing on Steam though and don't know how it'll look on the consoles. Any word on free upgrades for next-gen? Oh, wait, dumb question; I guess it won't actually be out until next year.

2. I'm not super familiar with the newest D&D rules but I love how they incorporate stuff like die rolls into gameplay; instead of the results just popping up in a quest log automatically, you get a little d20 interface for certain checks that lets you see what's happening graphically. It might get annoying over the course of an 80 hour adventure but it's a fun way to remind everyone that you're playing a D&D game.

3. Quick saves and quick loads are pretty fast, meaning you can save scum die rolls that you miss until you get the result you want. This is the way to truly enjoy an immersive role-playing experience, IMO.

4. They waste no time popping you into the action! Mind-flayers! Githyanki! The Hells! Realm-hopping! It feels a little weird fighting illithid as a 1-level dwarf, but hey: better than killing rats. Hope you all are doing well!

-rorie from oakland

I'm only a couple hours into this, and I don't know how far I'll get into it in Early Access. I'll echo the thought that I've seen where maybe you shouldn't play this in Early Access if you really want to dig into it deeper later; I have a feeling saves will break before release and it'll suck if you have to go through the first 20 hours or so again. But it seems like a worthy followup to BG!

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Junkerman

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No Paladin/Druid/Monk in EA right?

I'd be curious to see how the Warlock plays. I really enjoy the 5e rule set but I feel like, as you've suggested, the game will be best enjoyed on sale in Steam once its content complete.

I didnt touch DOS2 until much later and that seemed to be the right choice.

Would love to play a Paladin however...

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Zelyre

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I lost an hour and a half already and all I did was enter my name - Thry'llHouse

I've enjoyed what I played so far - it's nice to make skill checks and decisions in an RPG (Fallout 4, I'm looking at you.)

I am hoping combat gets a couple more passes. Distances seem a bit off and targeting imps felt floaty?

I'm also hoping the camera gets some changes. It's pulled in pretty tight and I'm not too thrilled about that.

Characters look great so far.

I'd like to play more but at the same time, I know that if I do, I will burn myself out before the actual game comes out.

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rorie

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#4 rorie  Staff  Online

@zelyre: I think the pathfinding needs a lot of work in general. I had a couple of moments where I couldn't move to a spot until I rotated the camera.

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cparks

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I definitely made the mistake of relying on autosaving and lost 30 minutes of progress! Overall I like the 5e integration and the very in-the-weeds dnd stuff off the bat, but I wonder where they’ll take the early story since it is so open right from the get go.

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BladeOfCreation

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Just made my character and got through the intro. I made a githyanki fighter, because I figure the githyanki will have interesting things to say about the mindflayers. I already had two dialogue options that were available due to being githyanki. The facial animations and details on non-human characters are really impressive. The game looks good. I'm not familiar with 5e rules so I'm learning that as I go. I ran into the same issue that always plagues early D&D/Pathfinder: your character is just as squishy, easy to hit, and likely to miss as the enemies. I look forward to really digging into this in the coming weeks.

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Humanity

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So a question for those that played it as I saw this mentioned above:

How "in the weeds D&D" is Baldurs Gate 3?

Back in 1997 a friend shows me Fallout and I fell in love and then subsequently really enjoyed Fallout 2. At that point I thought myself a self-proclaimed "RPG fan" as when you're a teen you often need to find labels to identify with. Baldurs Gate 1 was the big game to try so I bought this huge boxset that had like 10 DVD's or something and I couldn't make it out of the first area. I tried many times to get into Baldurs Gate, whether the original or the sequel, and never could do it. This was mostly due to the D&D ruleset which I was absolutely not familiar with. Coming in from Fallout which had guns that did 2-10 damage I was completely lost within stats like 2d5 or THAC0 or saving throws - you can cast a spell once and then have to sleep?? Fallout did all that stuff in the background. I very quickly realized that I wasn't really an RPG fan, that I was just a Fallout fan, and there was literally no other game like it on the market.

So is BG3 still surfacing all the D&D stuff or is it more approachable for a layman to get into?

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ToastMan

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I've been playing so much of the old infinity engine games this last few months and have been loving them. On the other hand, I have never been able to really get into Divinity Original Sin. If I had to put my finger on it I'd say it was mainly the writing and the overwhelmingly openness of the game that did not click for me.

The BG and IWD games felt much more up my alley. As a person who never played tabletop D&D you can take this with a huge grain of salt, but the stories in those games always felt like they were written by a DM that really wanted to immerse you in the world they created. The intro to IWD immediately pops to mind.

This early access is supposedly the entire first act. Anyone finished it and has thoughts on how the story and characters stack up to the earlier games in the series?

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SethMode

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@toastman: Slightly off topic, I'll say that having played both OS1 and OS2 (but not having played this), I will say that the jump in quality from 1 to 2, especially in writing, is significant. If you haven't tried it, I'd give it a shot, because while I enjoyed the combat of OS1, I didn't particularly love the game, while I adored OS2.

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Bane

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How is party management? Specifically, things like leveling and equipment.

I tried like hell to get into games like Divinity Original Sin and Pillars of Eternity, but having to fiddle around with the stats, skills, and equipment of all eleventy thousand potential party members was too much for me. I prefer to concentrate on my character and let party members handle their own business.

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Justin258

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I have a question I haven't been able to find an answer to anywhere - has PC controller support been implemented as of right now? Can I just plug in my Xbox One controller, lean back, and play this, or is it mouse and keyboard only right now? I'm not playing the Stadia version.

I'm pretty sure it will be there at some point in the future, given that it's on Stadia and D:OS has it, I just want to know if it's there now.

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TheRealTurk

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I guess my question is have they sped up combat any? As much as I love the old Baldur's Gate games and could go for more, I really dislike Divinity's combat system. Even the most basic encounters seem to take ages to complete and the whole thing just drags. I'd been hoping they had found a way to resolve battles faster, but now it just sounds like they've added dice rolls on top of everything else?

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BladeOfCreation

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@therealturk: As someone who went from playing D: OS2 for a few hours last night to playing BG3 for an hour or two last night, I can say that, no, combat does not feel any faster.

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frytup

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Not going to pay for it until it's finished, but I watched a couple of videos.

The writing annoys me far less than Larian's usual style, but they really need to tune encounter design. If you're giving me nothing but turn based combat in my Baldur's Gate, the fights need to be either smaller or less frequent. I don't want to spend 30 mins fighting a band of orcs.

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Junkerman

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@humanity: Havent played BG3 myself yet - but 3rd, 4th and 5th edition, especially 5th edition are VERY easy to grasp rules wise. Bigger numbers = good.

2ed which is what BG1 and 2 ran off of was completely wack where you actually wanted smaller numbers in some instances, but bigger numbers in others and without a manual good luck trying to parse that all out so if you've played DOS 1 and 2 or even things like Diablo or Fallout I cant see it giving you much grief.

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MezZa

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@humanity: 5E which BG3 is based on is designed to simplify rules and make it easier to get into. So BG3 as a result is easier to understand. You still need to get that 2d6 means rolling two six sided dice to determine damage, but generally the game handles most things for you. AC is also more simplified and THAC0 hasn't been a thing since 2nd edition D&D.

If you can learn and play a video game rpg like divinity original sin or pillars of eternity then you can learn 5th edition D&D.

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jacksmedulla

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#17 jacksmedulla  Online

From the Steam page, early access is supposed to last for at least a year, and I suspect it will be even longer than that. This seems like a VERY early early-access game, and as excited as I am for the final product, I think playing it now would really only serve to taint my eventual 1.0 playthrough.

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I only got maybe an hour into it so far. It seems pretty busted even by early access standards, but by the time they're done with it, I think it's going to be Witcher 3 level amazing.

I can tell it's a true D&D video game, because 90% of my skill check rolls have failed even when I have multiple bonuses stacked up.

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reap3r160

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#19  Edited By reap3r160

Can anyone give me incite as to why this is full price? Historically Early Access has always been a way to get into a WiP game early at a discount(basically kickstarter except you get a product immediately).

I'm super interested in this game, looks like a great wya to scratch my 5ed itch that I can due to Covid.

But hearing that it's missing at least 3 full classes makes me weary of paying $60 for a literally incomplete game. Especially when it will inevitably be 10% off on release.

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BladeOfCreation

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@reap3r160:

Whether or not this explanation works for you, this is why, according to the devs. I can see how this isn't a great explanation.

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.pcgamer.com/amp/this-is-why-baldurs-gate-3-will-cost-dollar60-when-it-launches-in-early-access/

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reap3r160

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@bladeofcreation: appreciate the link. I actually forgot about this game for a while until it came out, so wasn't following it prior to release.

I can see what he's saying. I'm fully willing to admit it's my own perception of early access, reinforced by what other games come out at. Appreciate that they're admitting it's a value proposition that I'd purely up to the customer.

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BladeOfCreation

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@reap3r160: Yeah. I get that perception. I figured I'd take a chance on this considering how much I'm enjoying D:OS2.

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Efesell

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I think full price for early access is asking a lot and I'm already not interested in early access for games like this so I'll be waiting.

But I took a look at the steam discussions, because I'm a fool, and couldn't help but wonder at all the people super mad about it.. and how many of them are just gonna go off and pre order something else based on nothing more than a cool idea.

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Kiwin

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I just played through the tutorial area with two friends. It is rough around the edges, but there are a lot of things to appreciate. I like that if two characters are next to one another in the initiative order they can act at the same time, which speeds up combat a bit compared to DOS. Being able to do things like put guidance on my friend to help them with their skill checks is also fun.

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flatblack

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I've been trying to play this with three friends but multiplayer seems a little busted. Apparently the devs are working on a hot fix so I'm keeping an eye on that. Like what I've played so far though. Seems pretty similar to DOS2

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Humanity

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@mezza: @junkerman: Thanks for the feedback. I know the very basics like that 2d4 is basically 2-8 damage but a lot of the other stuff I remember not being very clear to me. I might give it a whirl if the reviews are good. Kind of skipped out on Divinity and Tyranny and all those so maybe I'll jump in here.

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Seikenfreak

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#27  Edited By Seikenfreak

Played a handful of hours now. It's a little janky, but that is to be expected of any Early Access title. Overall, enjoying it as much as I did D:OS2. Mostly the same game. BG3 looks gorgeous.

The interesting and engaging part for me is that I recently discovered Critical Role. I've watched many episodes at this point and it really helped me get a better grasp on the rules of D&D. I ended up ordering a set of the 5E rule books, read through the Player's Handbook, the Monster Manual, and now working my way through the Dungeon Master guide. Truly fascinating as it's like reading an instruction manual on how to design any western RPG video game ever.

So taking in all this information, and then BG3 releasing, has been amazing timing. I can better understand and appreciate the D&D nuances of the story, combat, world etc. Bringing some of the dice roll elements to the forefront is very cool, though personally I would've liked to have seen them make a little thing come up where you click to literally toss physics based die instead of just a little dice icon roulette. Or maybe an optional mode where you can roll real die and it prompts you to input the result lol Of course, then you could cheat and type in whatever, but people are going to cheat anyway if they want. Kinda like save scumming.

Oh yea! And I also fired up BG2 on my Win98 machine the other day and tried that again. Having this new found knowledge certainly helps pull me in, and I'd probably keep going with it if BG3 hadn't released the next day.

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GnuStylo

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This is easily my favorite game I have played in...10 years? Granted this is due to my friends and I playing coop and lucking out on no game breaking bugs.

The stories that are naturally told and seeing how each person's choices effects the game has been fantasgreat.

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SethMode

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So, 5 months down the line I have a new laptop and am itching to play a new RPG...I'm curious what kind of product this is at this point? I don't play a lot of Early Access games, but I'm wondering if this has a narrative ending you can reach and just maybe isn't technically there yet? I know speculation is for 2022 so I don't expect it to be perfect, but I'm curious what kind of experience I'm going to have? Thanks duders!

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Justin258

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#30  Edited By Justin258

@sethmode: It's probably still just the first act. I know that an update broke saves not too long ago and I'm pretty sure it will happen again. If you're looking to see what this is going to be like, then it's a pretty good experience if my memory of playing it at early access launch is any indication. If you're looking for a more complete RPG... this ain't there yet.

There's a new Pathfinder coming out soon and if you haven't played Divinity Original Sin 2 yet then it's great, and fairly close to what BG3 is going to be anyway. Maybe look to those for a more complete thing that won't wipe your save in an update or two?

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chaser324

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#31 chaser324  Moderator

@sethmode: I think you're probably better off just waiting for BG3 to exit early access.

Most of the updates thus far, outside of adding the Druid and a few new gameplay mechanics, are focused just on QoL and polish. There's no official roadmap, but their posts seem to suggest they won't be making Acts 2 and 3 available until the game is ready for official release.

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Efesell

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I don't believe any of their previous early access versions ever included anything but Act 1 so yeah probably going to keep that going.

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SethMode

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@efesell: @chaser324: @justin258: Thanks duders! I have actually played D:OS2 a couple of times, so I won't go to that, but I DID just remember that I never finished Pillars 2, so maybe I'll do that instead of this. I was just a huge fan of both OS2 and the original BG1/2 so I've been kind of jonesing hard for this game and was feeling the tug of wanting to dive into it.

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