I haven’t played Baldur’s Gate 3 yet, because I’d rather wait until it finished its early access journey before diving into a vast narrative RPG.
Today, the game received its fifth major patch – simultaneously tempting me to start playing, and vindicating my decision to wait. It adds a new active roll system, background goals for characters to help steer your roleplaying, a toggle for non-lethal attacks and much more.
As always, Larian put out the video below to talk through the changes, hosted by the affable Swen Vincke:
All of the changes seem like a response to criticisms I’ve seen of previous builds of the game. The active roll system, for example, lets you and your party cast spells to nudge dice rolls more in your favour. Baldur’s Gate 3 is the kind of game where you’re supposed to fail and deal with the consequences, but having a little more agency over random chance is welcome.
The background goals sound cool, too. At character creation, you can set a goal such as “folk hero”, and then when you perform actions in-game that a folk hero would perform, you’ll earn inspiration points and XP. If I were a folk hero, the townspeople would sing ballads about the magnificent piles of cheese I can eat in a single sitting.
There are a hundred or so other changes listed in a post on Steam, but I’ll pull out a couple more. You can now break your enemy’s concentration during fights, hopefully by singing The Ballad Of Graham The Cheese Eater in a squeaky voice. My favourite change, however, is the ability to toggle on non-lethal attacks. It’s a button in the UI that makes people not die when you bash them with weapons, which is quite a powerful button.
The video ends with a mention that patch six will be coming than people expect, and that Baldur’s Gate 3 is still aiming for a 2022 release. I will stay strong and continue to wait for it to be finished.