« The Censorship of TES: A LamentNow That the NDA is Over... »

Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition Review

Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition Review

  08:20:00 pm, by Damon   , 858 words  
Viewed 8338 times since 02/15/14
Categories: Games

I've heard from many, many people about how bloody amazing Baldur's Gate and Baldur's Gate II are, and for the last many years (since around 2011, I believe) I've still not gotten around to playing it or giving it much thought until around November of 2013 when I started watching SorcererDave doing his Baldur's Gate Let's Play, which he had started over the summer during my internet hiatus. Then, two weeks and a few days ago, I finally decided I had seen enough, and I gave it a shot, buying it off the Mac App Store with an iTunes card I had laying around. So, here's my thoughts on Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition.

I have a personal blog that I post to sporadically, and I use my own set of criteria and opinions on my blog reviews, which can be found here, for anyone who wants to read it.

Also, as I've never played the original game, this post will not cover differences between the game, how good of an update it is, etc, since I don't know.

Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition

  • Platform: Windows, iOS, Mac
  • Developer: Overhaul Games
  • Release Date: 18 Nov, 2012 (Win), 7 Dec, 2012 (iOS), 22 Feb, 2012 (OS X)
  • Price: $19.99 (Mac App Store)

Plot (9/10)

The story of Baldur's Gate is centred around the ward of Gorion, a mage residing within Candlekeep. At the beginning of the game, the Sword Coast has entered a difficult time: iron production has virtually halted, metal already produced quickly 'rots', tools and weapons break easily, and bandits scour the countryside seeking iron over any other treasure. There are mercenaries with designs on the main character's life, beginning inside the once-secure walls of Candlekeep.

When Gorion and the PC leave the safety of Candlekeep, they are ambushed by mysterious armoured figures who demand the PC be handed over to them. Gorion refuses and a fight ensues with Gorion losing his life to buy the player time to escape. Armed with only what the PC has acquired within Candlekeep, knowledge that two friends of Gorion are in the nearby Friendly Arm Inn, and the aid of childhood friend Imoen, the PC sets out to investigate the troubles plaguing the Sword Coast and learn how they relate to it all.

I found this story to be remarkably well-written. Being a game of text, rather than dialogue, it's got many engaging and suspensful moments that really make you think about what's happening, though I am reluctant to share and provide unnecessary spoilers in case there is someone like me who hasn't played the game before and wants an opinion of the game, but as spoiler-free as possible.

In addition to the central story, there are numerous side quests given by many NPCs throughout the region, though there are no joinable factions like in The Elder Scrolls. Not that that's a bad thing. I rather like how the side quests don't detract from the main story like TES games can, though that's a blog posting for another time.

Graphics (9/10)

I am truly at a loss what to say. I'm inclined to think it looks good, though I have no comparison to give for HD remakes of 90s era games. It doesn't look bad, let's leave it at that. The game is presented in an isometric perspective, similar to the Black Isle Fallout games, and zoomed out, the game presents a nice clear image, while still maintaining a classic look, which not many games can achieve.

Controls (8/10)

The game is controlled by clicking and dragging to lasso your characters (or click the Select All sidebar button), then you click on screen to designate where you want your party to move to on the map. That's very straight forward. There are no complaints as far as I care.

The hotkeys present a slight problem to me, though it's just nitpicking really. While most of the controls are in places that make sense ("I" opens the inventory, "R" opens the Character Records, etc), there are a few hotkeys that aren't in a place that feels natural to me, and I am frequently slowed down by the need to click on pages through the sidebars, as I can't remember what the specific hotkeys are when I want them.

Voice Acting (N/A)

This section is not applicable, for as I stated, save for a few battle cries, the game's communication is done via text rather than dialogue, though characters unique to the Enhanced Edition, such as Neera, have voiced dialogue, in addition to the text. However, a small handful of new characters with alright dialogue doesn't justify a rating for V.A. as a whole.

Replay Value (10/10)

The game is based on the Dungeons and Dragons rule set, meaning the characters each have the nine different D&D alignments to choose from, and you can play the game according to each different alignment, based on what you choose for the player to have, given the player different reactions from the world and NPCs. A remarkable amount for such an old game. This game can definitely get many replays from it, and in the last two weeks I've tried numerous different character types to look at different responses they get.

Overall Score: 9/10

 Permalink

No feedback yet


Form is loading...