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The Problem With BG2

RaduzielRaduziel Member Posts: 4,716
We all love the Baldur's Gate Saga. It's full of adventure and the characters are well developed and etc.

But, among my real-life-friends, I see that people like BG more than BG2.

Ok, BG2 is an awesome game. We all know it. But BGEE is, IMHO opinion, better.

And I was wondering myself: why?

Well, the reason I prefer BG is because BG2 have tons of damn time-triggered quests. My actual save have 108 days and I've just arrived in Brynnlaw. Tons and tons of rests so I can get the quests from the NPCs.

I've had to wait eighteen days for Jan's quest, for example.

Everytime I finish BG I want to start a new game in BG. When I finish BG2 my feeling is "finally!"

Specially now with SoD when you have some big challenges in BG.

Well, but I would like to ask you, fellow adventurer: is there something you don't like in BG2? If there is what is it?



  • RaduzielRaduziel Member Posts: 4,716
    In a RP perspective I understand the "canon party"

    Jaheira and Minsc have REAL reasons to stay with you all the way to Irenicu's fall. They've losted beloved ones.

    Yoshimo also has a good reason to stick with you. And I don't need to say much about Imoen.

    I take every and all NPCs to do their quests, but no one can convince me that, for example, Haer'Dalis will go to the gates of Hell for your quest.

    Sarevok is a global menace. Irenicus is a local one. Even the Shadow Thieves didn't make haste to confront him because they didn't know the danger he was for them.

  • kamuizinkamuizin Member Posts: 3,680
    edited September 2016
    SoZ really rules :)! After some NWN2 plays i always found more fun in make a SoZ game continue in MoTB than run the basic NWN2 immutable story.

    The replayability of NWN2 OC was near 0, after 2 plays i didn't had more patience for it.

    A thing i always thought of was, NWN2 loose a huge opportunity of make that game an MMORPG, few to no changes were really need to achieve that, thus the existence of the unnoficial NWN2 MMORPG that exist.

  • xzar_montyxzar_monty Member Posts: 629
    The OP writes: "Tons and tons of rests so I can get the quests from the NPCs."

    I find this very strange - and totally untrue. I have never, ever had to do this, and I've always done pretty much all the quests there are in the game (with/for the NPCs I happen to have on that playthrough). The only time you have to do excessive resting is when you free Jaheira of the curse.

    As for which game is better, there's just no competition. Frankly, BG is rubbish. The quests are so simplistic, there are hardly ever any reasonable dialogue options, there are no banters, the story is all over the place, there is an awful lot of walking around, and so on. BG2, on the other hand, is the best computer game so far.

  • RaduzielRaduziel Member Posts: 4,716
    edited September 2016

    Be my guess and see how many days you need to start and complete Jan's quest (15-18 days to start). Or Dorn's. Or the Fighter's Stronghold (47 days!). Or Jaheira's romance. Or Wizard's Stronghold. Or Mazzy's quest. Or Anomen's quest. Or...

    Now do the math. You need 3 rests do skip a day. Well, you get it.

    You don't need to take my word:

    Just be careful before calling someone a liar. It's impolite to say the least.

  • xzar_montyxzar_monty Member Posts: 629
    @Raduziel: If someone says something that isn't true, that doesn't automatically make them a liar. Perhaps they don't know that what they say isn't true. Reading comprehension is a good thing - saying that I called you a liar is extremely foolish.

    Every single quest in the game will come to you during the course of the game without you having to spend any excess time resting resting resting. The only time you need to take consecutive rests is when Jaheira recovers of her curse. (And even then you don't have to, but it's sensible to do so.)

    (The last time I finished SoA in 66 days, which I only happen to remember because it was also hour 6. And I did everything my group was able to do, i.e. all the NPC quests and the rest. Never once did I have to spend any time just resting for quests to begin.)

  • RaduzielRaduziel Member Posts: 4,716
    @xzar_monty Understood. Sorry if I was hostile. Had a bad day.

    About the topic:

    But I'm talking about a completionist run. Taking all the NPCs - not just the six for your party - and doing their quests.

    I've finished everything I had to do in Athkatla and the surroundings and still needed to rest a lot to finish (or start) some quests. Maybe I didn't an optimal approach on the matter (I could take, for example, Mazzy, Anomen and Jan at the same time), but it doesn't change the fact that the time-trigger is a pain that makes the game become longer and not bigger.

    I ain't saying that this is a universal truth, it's just my POV. Some people don't bother, some people don't want to do all the quests, some people have the luck of being able to build time-trigger-oriented-parties. It's not my case.

    Peace, mate.

  • GallengerGallenger Member Posts: 403
    Honestly, I preferred some of the art style and sprite choices in the original BG - it felt alright for BG2 because it was a different game in a different geographic area so of course helmets and armor will look different, but I still prefer the original (which is basically impossible to enjoy now unless you want green water and none of the bg2 classes).

    I think part of the charm of the first game is how much of it is spent exploring wilderness areas and how built up the special dungeon like areas are. Bg2 doesn't really have too much of that and is much more grand in scope. It's partially because of the party power level too lol. Some people really enjoy low level D&D while others tend to prefer to start after the "could be killed by a common house cat" stage has ended lol.

  • DJKajuruDJKajuru Member Posts: 3,222
    On the other hand, for a beginner timed npc quests are quite a surprise. Do you remember the first time Aerie was summoned by Quayle's messenger, or Jahera was approached by Harpers? It was surely a positive turn of events. Should it be done the same way BG1 was most npc's would tell their personal quests from start (" My name is edwin and I seek the nether scroll") .

  • batoorbatoor Member Posts: 677
    edited September 2016
    In-game time doesn't bother me, even if I have to advance it with rest spam or travelling. The real time triggers on romances though seem questionable, as there's no way to avoid that except to muck around with the console.

    I like the progression of the main quest much better in BG2 as you have access to the main city at the start of the game, while in BG1 has you go through 2 rather large dungeons before you actually get to walk into Baldurs gate. That's where the sweet spot of the first game starts for me and I feel a sense of relief of having put the Nashkel mines, cloakwood forest and the cloakwood mines behind me.

    The wilderness crawl is indeed a nice touch, but BG2 had a higher budget and much more ''kewl'' stuff.

    I will say though.. having done the warrior stronghold so many times now...De'Arnise Keep isn't something I particularly enjoy doing put it mildly.

    Post edited by batoor on
  • GodGod Member Posts: 1,150
    Gallenger said:

    Honestly, I preferred some of the art style and sprite choices in the original BG

    I prefer them still. The old animations are just more fitting.

    On topic, if I were to choose between BG1 and BG2, I'd choose IWD :trollface:

  • 10Bazza1110Bazza11 Member Posts: 162
    I don't like the way way in BG2 you keep getting quests chucked at you before you have finished the one you are on. All you need to do is go from one part of town to another and someone pops up giving you a quest.

  • GodGod Member Posts: 1,150

    "go find the bandit camp, here's a hint" instead of "I'll mark my castle on your map and you can't even stop to see the countryside on the way"

    And the excitement when you hear 'You have been waylaid by Elminster enemies and must defend yourself' because you have been waylaid by enemies and must defend yourself...

  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 3,355

    But Oghma's mercy! Do I HAVE to be dragged into some religious squabble EVERY time I want to enter the sewers and save Haer'Dalis? (I just want my playhouse, dammit! :'( )

    And even worst that is one of the few timed quests of the game.
    But you don't have to do it every time, even if is forced to you the first not spoiled run of your life.
    And as it was the fist time the fact that you are forced into it is fine, also in RL sometimes happens, and you can also say "no thanks, find some other adventurer to help you, I have my friend Imoen to rescue and other things to do", thing that RP wise is very logical.
    But the way to avoid to be forced into it is very easy, in the area there is an awesome temple of the goddess of light, as you pass is very logical to step in and have a look, then you discover that there is also an exit in the south wall. That is the easy way to avoid the triggering of the religious squabble quest.
    And on the way back you have other 2 roads to exit the area.

  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 3,355
    @Raduziel if you want a completionist run I see the problem that you find with the time-triggered quests.
    Easily solved with the mods already mentioned.
    But I see it in a different way, in bg2 you have something like 13 NPCs, plus the EE ones, that was not present when the game was created, most of them with their own quests, their own lives, and you need only 5 of them to fill the party. You help them dealing with their own problems and they will help you with your bigger one. There is no reason, other than be completionist or a powergamer that want to grind every possible XP to have them all in the party, maybe you can change 2 or 3 party members because you are not found with some of the ones you have, maybe you want to drop your thief because you meet an other one that has all a thief must have, but is also a mage. Or maybe you are not so happy with your cleric because he is too arrogant or whiny, and you meet a mysterious and beautiful drow one.
    look at it with the eyes of a new, not spoiled player, they are options, you need a cleric and you can choose between 3 of them. In a framework that is really free, at the beginning your goal is to collect a lot of money, and to find some helpers that will become comrades, and you can chose in which order you will deal with the quests.
    This way a new player can experience some runs where the main quest is the same, but new NPCs are used and new content is discovered, you don't have to eat all the cake in one time.
    their quests are timed for that way to play, and are perfect for that, if they where timed for a completionist they would end too soon for a "regolar" new player. And which ones are the longer ones? Jaheira, that you have from the beginning and maybe also in the previous game, and some related to your class stronghold, and Gaelan, the only one you are really forced to meet, give you suggestions to start them early. You are a mage, well, go there, you are a fighter, than go to the CC when Nalia actively ask your help stressing on how much urgent is to go very quickly to rescue her castle and father.
    the game was created before the boards and online walk troughs, no one would ever think that after more than 15 years from its creations there would be so many people still playing it, people with so many runs.

    You completionists and we XP grinders are using something that was designed for other people, people like we or you was when we did the first 5-10 runs, somehow we are misusing the game, but the reason why we misuse it is that is a so GOOD game that even if it was not designed for us is so satisfying also for us.

  • gorgonzolagorgonzola Member Posts: 3,355
    What I like of BG2?
    Many, many things. How is so strategically and tactically complex for such an old engine, how it can be played in so many ways and styles, how can be modded to suit our tastes (THANKS MODDERS !!!), how it can be immersive, I still remember the first time I saw the sun again after the initial dungeon and how much good cheese can be found in it, after maybe some hundred thousand topics on many boards there is still someone that discover a new tactic or a new combination of spells.

    What I don't like?
    The fact that bg1 was perfect for a DnD game, then come the expansion, the sequel and the expansion of the sequel, but to keep the xp growing the original spirit of DnD was lost, with mortals reaching levels that should be reserved to gods. What really hurts me is the proliferation of super weapons in ToB, where each one and his brother has weapons that in BG1 don't even exist and in SoA are extremely rare and every fighter or mage you meet has a level that would make trivial for him to solo BG1 and maybe SoA. I am not talking of the bosses, every crap mage or fighter has that level and that weapons.
    And also the way you level up, in about half year charname from the very inexperienced person that he was in Candlekeep becomes the incredible one at the end of ToB. Like someone who begins to learn how to play a piano and after 2 or 3 months of studying becomes the best piano player in the world. And don't tell me that is because Charname is the son of a god, the NPCs are not so, but they grow at the same rate.

    The growth rate is somehow believable in BG1, but in SoA start to go faster and in ToB has no sense at all.
    I don't like it, but I love it, because it give all the complexity needed.
    In BG1 a fighter wins mostly if he is strong, if he is not so he can do very little about it, the bear or bandit will kill him, same for the mage, he has few spells memorized, if the enemy fails the save against the sleep the battle is won, other way the caster is screwed. Is a more a point, click and hope game.
    In Bg2, and even more in a modded bg2, almost each class has a chance also against enemies much more powerful, a solo Charname can beat enemies so much powerful then himself, without using cheats and easy exploits because the more levels open to more options and choices. For me the most enjoyable part is chapter 2 of SoA, in ToB it becomes more a thing of super equipment for the fighters and spamming ADHW for mages, a game of buffing and debuffing, even if is not the only way to play it, my solo sorc used very few ADHW and dragon breaths.
    Whel, not completely true, he killed everyone in the last level of the D'arnise Keep with ADHW, without even leaving the first room, but he did not cast a single one of them. having Tactics Mod Tor Gal, the last survivor falling dead just 3 or 4 feets from him was really funny, I really Wish that you where there to see it...

  • sluckerssluckers Member Posts: 280
    I simply find the BG1 plot far more compelling than BG2. Sarevok was an epic villain, and his plot believable and grounded in the environment where the game takes place.

    BG2 gets off to a great start, but suffers after the underdark... then completely nosedives in the last act wherein we learn that the mysterious and dangerous Irenicus is just some Elf Queen's butthurt ex-boyfriend. On top of that, the whole elven secrecy takes away much; rather than creating a build up to the final revelations, the lack of forthrightness leaves the history and justification behind Irenicus' punishment severely lacking in impact. I never felt the player got enough information about all that. It's wrapped up very quickly right at the end.

    Then you go to hell... for whatever reason. This mechanic is not adequately explained in the game. Just a lot of new-agey 'you are linked together' soul-talk and whatnot.

  • RaduzielRaduziel Member Posts: 4,716
    edited September 2016
    I find the battles in BG/ToSC/SoD much more challenging than those in SoA/ToB.

    There's nothing that will touch my party by now. Pretty much everyone is able to regenerate and yesterday Minsc cleared the Beholder's Lair in Underdark and Bodhi's Lair all by himself (using Cloak of Mirroring for the first and dual wielding Azuredge and Mace of Disruption for the latter)

    I know what many will say: just don't use those items.

    Well, the problem is: those items are from the vanilla game. It's nothing I've added with mods to break the game. SoA-ToB itself lacks balance.

    My Enchanter was able to solo the battle against the Twisted Rune. Jaheira and Minsc killed Kangaxx in a blink. Firkraag didn't had a chance, so didn't TorGal, Tolgerias/Lavok, Mae'Var, Faldorn, Thaxll'ssillya, the Guarded Compound, Bodhi, Irenicus (in Spellhold) etc.

    Battling Irenicus in Spellhold should be at least as hard as battling Sarevok in the Duchal Palace. When I overwhelmed him like a gibberling that I saw that something was very wrong in SoA.

    There's no such a thing as "a hard boss fight" in SoA. I particularly can't remember even one.

    Only twice in all SoA I've break a sweat to win a fight: The Eyeless Cult and the Slavers in the Slums. And nowadays the only enemies that gives me trouble are illithids. Why? Because of items. And even for the Cult, with a right amount of money I could by the Shield of Balduran and turn that quest in a strolling in the park.

    And at the very end of the Eyeless Cult, the game gives you a item that is quite literally a "I win" button.

    In BG/ToSC/SoD I needed to use all the resources at hand AND the battle was still a challenge. To battle Karoug, Ajantis drinked a potion of heroism, potion of invulnerability, oil of speed, potion of fire giant strenght, potion of agility and potion of fortitude. And to even HIT the thing Imoen had to sneak past it, grab the Sword of Balduran, drink an invisibility potion and get back.

    And you guys can say: you can always install SCS.

    I know I can. But it's like saying "you can always change the Dungeon Master". And IMHO the "standard" DM of SoA/ToB sucks.

    Post edited by Raduziel on
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