28 August, 2011

Baldur's Gate II

Release Date: 2000
Platform: PC
Developer: BioWare
Genre: Role-Playing

In 1988, SSI's Gold Box series redefined the Western idea of the RPG genre. They took the single most important set of pen-and-paper rules -- Advanced Dungeons & Dragons -- and tied them to an epic series of campaigns that spanned entire continents and several games, breathing life into Gary Galax's legendary creation. Running out of steam in the early 1990s, however, the D&D franchise was left to languish. Until, that is, BioWare created Baldur's Gate. The effect was like stepping through the rainbow, like moving from black-and-white to colour.

Baldur's Gate was teaming with life in a way that no other RPG had ever been. Where the Gold Box games had provided hack-and-slash gaming supported by blocky graphics, Baldur's Gate offered would-be adventurers an abundance of quests and meaningful interactions across huge playing fields;across intricately detailed, beautifully rendered isometric recreations of a completely convincing fantasy medieval world.

The transition between Baldur's Gate and Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn was every bit as pronounced. The sequel may have streamlined the interface, but it bulked out the playing experience. Like the Gold Box games, players could import their characters and items from a previous game, and as those characters grew in power, so the game changed to reflect their newfound influence. Building up their own strongholds and followers, they were free to lead their own way through a labyrinthine plot that weaved together divergent and mutually exclusive subplots and quests -- indeed, some subquests were as weighty and complex as the entire first game.

As far as gaming goes, it's a satisfying complexity that has yet to be eclipsed. Indeed, Baldur's Gate II is probably still the pinnacle of the Western RPG.

10 memories:

Wow, I will try to get this game again :P

I've beat this game so many times with a friend of mine. Diablo series can smell on these..

Looks like a diablo clone. I guess I'll have to try it.


This plays nothing like Diablo...

"Looks like a diablo clone." Burn this heretic! Honestly, BG2 was one of the last good cRPG I played. The story and characters were more important then fancy 3D special effects in these days.

Baldurs Gate ain't no Diablo clone

awesome game! spent many hours of my life playing it...

It's a shame I've never actually played this game. I've heard so many great things about it. Maybe one day I'll get to try it out.

Im waiting for gw2, if it doesnt match up to what i expect id give this a try...

Absolutely amazing videogame. I spent weeks and weeks playing and loving it.

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