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When should I play SoD?

StoltverdStoltverd Member Posts: 15
Hello!
As the title suggest, I would like to know your opinion as when should I play SoD.
I'm not really asking about the story or the changes made. I'm not even asking if I should buy it. I preordered it on steam.

Before you answer my question however please read this about me:

Baldurs Gate have a special place in my heart. It was one of the first games I played, and along Dagerfall became my favorite game of all time... Even although I never completed it. The furthest I played was until the kobold infested mines. I would always restart over when I reached that point and created a new character with a different background and RP it until that point and restart the cycle again. Not because I didn't like the story or systems, and neither because I didn't like my build; but rather because I loved the stories that my child brain would create about CHARNAME and the new stories a new CHARNAME presented.
While I grew up I found myself to be a flexible nostalgic idiot :P I love remasters and re releases and GOG. And I'm not a puritan except with the original view of designers and developers for a game; that means I love "unfinished bussiness" kind of mods and restored content.

I have come to like the new cinematics of BGEE and even the new outlines of the sprites. I also like the new NPCs.
I however feel concerned about the new expansion since I've finally decided to complete the saga.
Was a new expansion really needed? Was this expansion what the developers originally wanted to do? Did bioware and/or black isle leave documents about a plot for a possible new expansion? Do the expansion really make sense with BG2 and ToB? How much RP freedom do you have? I've heard that there are a lot of places where you can't commit crimes because out of nowhere a wizard teleports to your location and kills you (like in Ultima 8 pagan), and that in many dialogs you can't be evil or an ass. Any of this is true?

Should I give SoD a go for my first COMPLETE unalterated run or should I disable it? Or should I scrap the enhanced editions and play the originals with TuTu or BGT for that first complete run? (I also have the originals)

Many thanks and have a great day :)
Post edited by Stoltverd on

Comments

  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 3,410
    Prepare for arguments and trolling.
    OrlonKronsteenPapa_Lou
  • DanacmDanacm Member Posts: 379
    If you want to just feel the old baldurs gate experience once, my advice is to play enchanced edition, its updated features are create a far better atmosphere. I tried the old original one, and i realized that its somewhat feel oldy nowdays and i miss enchanced features a lot.

    I think SOD is have good and strong points as a game. Worth to play it, at least once. I did it, it was fun, but thats all. In my newest plays i always skip SOD, takes time, i get bored with it and i really dont need that storyline.



    OrlonKronsteen
  • StoltverdStoltverd Member Posts: 15
    I hope you're wrong.
    I've waited a year because I knew any questions about SoD would spark fights after the many controversies...
    But now it's been a year!!! Surely people can give me their opinion without repeating old arguments again and again!
  • StoltverdStoltverd Member Posts: 15
    Danacm said:

    If you want to just feel the old baldurs gate experience once, my advice is to play enchanced edition, its updated features are create a far better atmosphere. I tried the old original one, and i realized that its somewhat feel oldy nowdays and i miss enchanced features a lot.

    I think SOD is have good and strong points as a game. Worth to play it, at least once. I did it, it was fun, but thats all. In my newest plays i always skip SOD, takes time, i get bored with it and i really dont need that storyline.



    Why do you say you "don't need that storyline"?
    Which are the strong and weak points in your opinion?

  • Artemius_IArtemius_I Member Posts: 1,996
    You expect too much of people.

    My personal opinion: play it. It's worth your time. Don't demand too much from it and it's an enjoyable few hours of gameplay. I keep my hand out of the mess surrounding SoD discussion but I don't regret buying and playing the game.
    thespaceOrlonKronsteenStoltverd
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 3,410
    Sod is divisive, some reasons are nostalgia, some are legitimate weaknesses. Opinion on it is so divided, I suggest you just play through it once and decide for yourself. Especially since you already own it. Personally, I like it more than BG1, less than BG2.
    batoorOrlonKronsteenNightingale
  • PaulGreystokePaulGreystoke Member Posts: 54
    My advice - play it! Play it without outside influence & decide for yourself if it is a worthwhile addition to the Saga. My personal opinion is that it is - but only you can decide what fits your headcanon of the game.
    ThacoBellOrlonKronsteenthespace
  • OrlonKronsteenOrlonKronsteen Member Posts: 398
    Go for it for all the reasons above.
  • NightingaleNightingale Member Posts: 59
    I would personally advise playing SoD at least once. Divorced from all the knee-jerk shenanigans that surrounded it on launch, SoD is an enjoyable experience that is worth a try. I personally enjoy Beamdog's effort to explain certain scenarios and developments from the sequel (the sudden dual-classing of a certain character comes to mind). Whether or not you want to play it on all your playthroughs is ultimately up to you, but since you already have it, It can't hurt to play it and decide for yourself if it is a worthy addition to the series.

    As for the EE versus Original question, I'd just go EE. The Enhanced Editions aren't perfect, but neither were the originals. There are numerous bugs and issues from the original games that the Enhanced Editions address and they also added a number of quality of life changes that just make the game objectively better (The quick-loot bar for one).
    ThacoBellSunder
  • StoltverdStoltverd Member Posts: 15
    I've edited my OP to reflect the fact that the real question I wanted to ask was WHEN should I play SoD.
    I bough it after all, so I am going to play it.
    But should I play it on my first complete run?
    I'm leaning to "yes" after all the answers BTW.
    ThacoBell
  • SunderSunder Member Posts: 56
    I like Sod, think it is a great addition and definitely worth playing. I still am finishing up my 1st straight play through and, like you, I had played original Baldur's gate long ago when I was far younger. I think either way would be quite enjoyable, but for nostalgia reasons, I would prolly just do the originals only first. Then again, how many people really get the chance to play through the entire game including SoD for the 1st time? Not many, I am betting a large portion of the people that play all of the games have played a tleast 1 and more than likely both of the originals plus expansions long before and never had the chance to do a "trilogy" run for a 1st time complete play through.
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 3,410
    I'd say play SOD between 1 and 2. Thats where it lies story wise.
  • UnderstandMouseMagicUnderstandMouseMagic Member Posts: 1,365
    Play 1 then 2, and after you have finished play them all again this time with SOD included between 1/2.

    There is so much foreshadowing in SOD that the impact of BG2, IMO, is severely impacted.

    So if, as you seem to want to do, you want to experience the games with the same sense of wonder and discovery as you did way back then, trust the original developers that they can deliever that.

    Again IMO, SOD pulls the future into the present rather than the past towards the future. And by doing that disrupts the intentions of the original BG2 far too much.
    SunderStoltverdBelgarathMTH
  • MirandelMirandel Member Posts: 349
    Stoltverd said:


    Was a new expansion really needed?

    Well, there was a gap in explanation how did you end up in Irenicus dungeon with THAT people instead of companions you used to have. Sure all of us came up with some ideas, but officially you never being told what happened.
    Stoltverd said:


    I have come to like the new cinematics of BGEE and even the new outlines of the sprites. I also like the new NPCs.

    Then teir presence in SoD (with separate quests at least for some of them) should be a bonus to you.
    Stoltverd said:


    Was this expansion what the developers originally wanted to do? Did bioware and/or black isle leave documents about a plot for a possible new expansion?

    Do not think so. But is it so important? The result is more authentic than any quest-mod. And enough to feel as continuation of the story.
    Stoltverd said:


    Do the expansion really make sense with BG2 and ToB?

    With the beginning of BG2 - absolutely, it was the purpose of SoD to fill the gap and create the bridge. Though, no one in BG2 will acknowledge events in SoD. But no one did it for BG1 either (old NPCs, your companions in fact, acting like they have never met you before). So, no loss here.
    Stoltverd said:


    How much RP freedom do you have?

    You can not kill EVERY NPC around you. And - yes, you can not be an ass to some specific characters. At least not in every dialog. The rest - as much as you had before. An
    Stoltverd said:


    Should I give SoD a go for my first COMPLETE unalterated run or should I disable it?

    Again, the idea was to fill the gap and explain how did you end up in Irenicus dungeon and in that particular company (oh, and transformation of Imoen into mage too).

    Do you need it? Do you want to see what Bimdog came up with? Then play it in order. There is BGT-EE now which includes SoD as well. Though BG1-SoD transition is very smooth as it is.

    I'd say play it and play it in order as it was mean to be played. After all, you can stop at any moment should you think you had enough.
    ThacoBellStoltverdNightingale
  • StoltverdStoltverd Member Posts: 15

    Play 1 then 2, and after you have finished play them all again this time with SOD included between 1/2.

    There is so much foreshadowing in SOD that the impact of BG2, IMO, is severely impacted.

    So if, as you seem to want to do, you want to experience the games with the same sense of wonder and discovery as you did way back then, trust the original developers that they can deliever that.

    Again IMO, SOD pulls the future into the present rather than the past towards the future. And by doing that disrupts the intentions of the original BG2 far too much.

    Does it really pulls the future that much?
  • UnderstandMouseMagicUnderstandMouseMagic Member Posts: 1,365
    @Stoltverd

    IMO, yes.

    The main protagonist of BG2 turns up in SOD for no real reason other than the voice actor being available.
    It undermines the original developers intention that you are as lost and unknowing about why and what is happening at the start of BG2 as you are at the start of BG.

    The two games mirror each other very well. It wasn't a random decision to start BG2 with Charname completely in the dark about what's going on.
    It was done to recreate the feeling of discovery that worked so well in BG.
    Partly to enthuse players who moved from BG, (set them back as if they were restarting).
    Partly because they needed to engage a whole new audience.

    BelgarathMTH
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 3,410

    @Stoltverd

    IMO, yes.

    The main protagonist of BG2 turns up in SOD for no real reason other than the voice actor being available.
    It undermines the original developers intention that you are as lost and unknowing about why and what is happening at the start of BG2 as you are at the start of BG.

    The two games mirror each other very well. It wasn't a random decision to start BG2 with Charname completely in the dark about what's going on.
    It was done to recreate the feeling of discovery that worked so well in BG.
    Partly to enthuse players who moved from BG, (set them back as if they were restarting).
    Partly because they needed to engage a whole new audience.

    You really only know this if you already played the BG2 though. Its obvious due to hindsight.
    ronaldo
  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 4,403
    If you've never played the original BG trilogy (Baldur's Gate, Shadows of Amn, Throne of Bhaal), I'd play that first before playing Siege of Dragonspear. Siege of Dragonspear is a prequel to Shadows of Amn. You can appreciate it and its place in the franchise better if you come into it with full knowledge of Baldur's Gate 2. Also, SoD has a different tone and feel from the original parts of the series. It was made in a different time, almost 20 years after the original.

    I'd play the original trilogy on Enhanced Edition versions, without the Siege of Dragonspear expansion installed over your BG1.

    If you really want the original experience, use the GoG versions without EE, but be advised that there will be some headaches and inconveniences in the gameplay (slow walking speed, stacks of only 20 artillery per quiver, no pausing on inventory screen in BG1), that are improved or eliminated in EE.
  • UnderstandMouseMagicUnderstandMouseMagic Member Posts: 1,365
    @ThacoBell

    "You really only know this if you already played the BG2 though. Its obvious due to hindsight."

    The developers of SOD only made the game the way it is because of hindsight. So it's not a matter of me as a player seeing something that wouldn't be there for a new player, SOD actually is designed to impact on BG2.

    BG2 is considered a classic game, it recieves praise across the board as one of the best crpg ever made. If a new player wants to experience that for themselves, then how can something that affects that be recommended?



  • UnderstandMouseMagicUnderstandMouseMagic Member Posts: 1,365
    Papa_Lou said:

    I was in your exact shoes a little over a year ago (I think. I'm not good with time).

    I had played the original Baldur's Gate as a young kid, but never got any further than Beregost because, well, I was a kid. I didn't really get how the game worked. But then when I was in college I discovered what Beamdog had done in remastering the series.

    SoD was out at the time, and so I played through the entire saga, SoD included. I always avoid reading things online when I buy games, and so I had NO idea that SoD wasn't a part of the original games.

    That's right. I had NO idea SoD was made by Beamdog, and not the original BG team in the 90s.

    So in my honest opinion, contrary to (kinda) popular belief, SoD doesn't ruin anything. It fits into the story very well, and fills a gap between two games. It's a very interesting expansion, and no more linear than ToB is. Again, that's my opinion.

    I won't spoil anything for you, but a lot of the complaints I see about SoD, including some of the ones above, didn't stick out to me at all. I feel like these would only stick out to someone who had played the games pre-SoD, and just simply don't like the idea of the gap between 1 & 2 being filled. That's totally fine, but I don't think it should be a reason new players avoid the game.

    So like I said, I was in your exact same position once, and I highly highly recommend playing SoD on your first complete playthrough because, to me, a playthrough isn't actually complete without this expansion. Siege of Dragonspear is as much a Baldur's Gate game as the original two games.

    I have no problem with you having a different opinion. SOD divides opinion, the OP asked to hear forum members opinions.

    So why come out with something like this,

    "just simply don't like the idea of the gap between 1 & 2 being filled"

    What evidence have you that I didn't want an expansion set between BG and BG2 rather than not particularly liking the one that has been created?

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