I've really been up and down about Baldur's Gate 3 ever since it was announced. I was super-excited when I first heard that it was happening—I love the Baldur's Gate series—but I was put off by all the illithid and githyanki and flying squid ship stuff, which is far too exotic for my basic dungeon-crashing tastes. And then there's the nostalgia factor. I want more Baldur's Gate, but do I want to risk tainting my sweet memories of the perfect digital D&D experience?
Today's community update actually has me feeling a little better about the whole thing, not because it goes into any real detail about the game (it doesn't) but because it's a soothing reminder that Larian knows what it's doing. Much of it is aspirational—"Our task is to create the ultimate Dungeons & Dragons game," and that sort of thing—but there's also some interesting bits of trivia about how the studio has grown between Divinity: Original Sin 2 and Baldur's Gate 3, and its approach to developing a "mature" RPG.
"We want to push the limits of every theme within the game, which should allow you to play exactly how you’d like to play. Astarion [the character used in Baldur's Gate 3 gameplay previews] may be a Vampire Spawn, but that doesn’t mean he has to be evil - if hungry," Larian wrote. "Though you saw one path at PAX East, there were many possibilities for good, and evil - note also, everything in between. It has always been Larian’s plan to create games that allow you to play however you wish. This larger team, and this new engine, allow us to push this further than ever before. Much further than Divinity: Original Sin 2."
Even though it's short on specifics, I find the update oddly comforting. This may not be "my" Baldur's Gate, but it gives me the sense that Larian really gets what's important about the experience, which even I have to admit is ultimately more important than whether combat is turn-based or real-time with pause.
More concrete information about what's in store will hopefully be coming next week, in an AMA with Swen Vincke (Creative Director), David Walgrave (Producer), Adam Smith (Senior Writer), Nick Pechenin (Lead Systems Designer), and Jiji (Writing Director, and whose last name I have been unable to dig up) that will take place at 11 am PT/2 pm ET on March 12, on Reddit. Baldur's Gate 3 is set to launch into Early Access later this year.