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!