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October 8th, 2007, 14:07
I have a soft spot for BG - I hadn't played a D&D CRPG in a while and it hit the right nostalgia notes for me. Many of the criticisms are valid but I think you are too harsh on the story and the superceded AD&D rules. I also don't agree BG is a sandbox game.

From a structural perspective, I acknowledge the largely empty wilderness areas are a poor design (notice how quickly BioWare learned the lesson) but, personally, it made me feel like I really was exploring the Sword Coast.

I'm also ambivalent about criticism of the dungeon-crawling aspect - I suspect (and this is just my gut reaction) that if you were reviewing ToEE, you would be likely to defend the level of combat ("hey - it was meant to be a dungeon crawler!"). I know not everyone will agree but combat was always central for me in D&D's design and philosophy and I expect D&D games to be combat heavy.

Is the Gold Box Pool of Radiance a classic? I don't remember much more than lots of combat. That said, I certainly agree BG could have offered more alternative solution scenarios.
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