Originally Posted by largh
Baldur's gate 3 early access
I haven't enjoyed an RPG this much since Pathfinder: Kingmaker and would like to convey that this will become an excellent RPG. Those who are not going to try the EA: stay strong - there are plenty of bugs and poorly working elements in the game at the moment. You're doing right by not spoiling the enjoyment Those who want to try: this game is so complex that I doubt that there will be two similar playthroughs, so you might as well go for it instead of watching videos of others playing the EA.
I am almost ready to forgive the naming of the game as Larian has teased out elements that made the original entries classics and improved on them. The low-level forest exploration is back and is as enjoyable as I remember it from BG 1, although the lack of day/night cycle impairs the atmosphere a little bit. Anyone familiar with DnD lore will get *that* vibe from the game and feel right home. There is a great feeling of involuntary adventure about the party. NPCs are generally well-written and complex. None feel like a slave created for the player. Everybody has their own agenda and the agendas of the player and joinable NPCs just happen to entwine for a while. The good and evil are somewhere there in the background but the game is written so well that both appear as reasonable options. The internal battle of using your mystical powers is also there but does not work very well in the early access (will no doubt be fixed).
A paladin-like brainless charging to battle is discouraged and you can infiltrate and talk your way through the enemies. Your party feels so underpowered against some of the enemies that the game almost asks you to choose another way than a direct confrontation. This gives the game a novel or tabletop RPG feel as you do not just delete the world around you by killing everybody. Even goblins are mighty creatures when there are enough of them. Talking of enemies: they depend on your choices. You can play good, neutral, evil, or mix all of these. Depending on what you do, some factions become hostile while others become "allies". A nice thing is that playing evil does not feel any eviler than playing a good character. The factions are just different sides of DnD lore.
One of the things I liked the most about the game was that playing a rogue does not feel pointless any longer. It is fun and rogue is a valuable asset in a battle. I tend to pick troubled characters in RPGs and enjoy playing a drow in DnD games. The game responded quite nicely to being a drow, although I feel that the NPCs could have been even more hostile towards my character. Scaling walls is currently missing from the game and would add enjoyment to the rogue & drow combination. Yet, implementing this might be difficult.
There is one thing I have not seen in similar games before: the use of light and eyesight, even though this aspect has been baked into DnD for a long time. BG3 does an attempt on this by darkening the screen in low-light settings for humans and by giving some disadvantages in the battle. Drow on the other hand does not suffer from these penalties but does not have any penalties on the surface either! The use of lighting is a great idea and could be vastly improved from what it is now. If Larian got the light thing right (see here), BG3 could be a truly innovative entry to cRPGs.
Even if they did not fix any of these things, the game would still be excellent when published without the countless bugs it has at the moment. There is still the Larian vibe, which some people on this forum appear to be allergic to. If you're not, and love turn-based fantasy RPGs, this game might well become a GotY or even GotD for you.