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Everything we know about Baldur's Gate 3, Larian Studios' next major RPG

Time to save your brains.

One of the greatest role-playing video game series ever inspired by Dungeons & Dragons is getting a sequel from the studio that developed Divinity: Original Sin. That's right: Baldur's Gate III is coming, and there's a Mind Flayer trying to devour your brain.

After years of re-releases, slight content updates, and additions, Baldur’s Gate is back with its first new mainline title since 2004. Here's everything to know about Baldur’s Gate 3, which will offer a direct adaptation of the entire D&D Fifth Edition ruleset.

When is the Baldur’s Gate 3 release date?

Baldur’s Gate 3 has yet to receive an official full release date, but Larian announced during an August 18, 2020 stream that the game would enter early access on September 30, 2020 with about 20 hours of gameplay content. But then — with a genuinely funny Twitter rename to "Baldur's Late" — Larian Studios announced on September 23 that the early access build would be late:

The update cites "a few unexpected delays" and "stability" issues as the cause for the delay. But in the effort of publishing as polished an experience as possible, Larian delayed the launch to October 6, 2020.

There's no telling how long it might be until the game is fully released, but its spiritual predecessor, Divinity: Original Sin 2, spent almost exactly a year in early access before the full release.

Considering the fact that Baldur's Gate 3 takes several ambitious steps forward in terms of graphics, mechanics, and more, it's possible it may take even longer. All things considered, the full game may be released in late 2021. But there's also the possibility that more content may be added to the early access build over time.

What's included in Baldur’s Gate 3 early access?

Broadly speaking, Larian has promised about 20 hours of content in the early access version of the game, but with so many variations in terms of player race, class, and dialogue options, it makes for a staggering array of possibilities.

Through the August 18 livestream and other presentations, Creative Director Swen Vincke has compared the BG3 early access to Divinity: Original Sin 2:

  • Number of combat encounters: 22 in DOS2 EA vs. 80 in BG3 EA
  • Number of English dialogue lines: 17,600 in DOS2 EA vs. 45,980 in BG3 EA
  • Number of characters: 142 in DOS2 EA vs. 596 in BG3 EA
  • Number of spells/actions: 69 in DOS2 EA vs. 146 in BG3 EA

Early access will let players create a custom character or choose from a pre-selected assortment of "Origin" characters: Astarion (Elf/Vampire Rogue), Gale (Human Wizard), Lae’zel (Githyanki Warrior), Shadowheart (Half-Elf Cleric), and Wyll (Human Warlock). Larian promises even more origin characters will be released during early access.

In terms of custom characters, available races include Human, Elf, Half-Elf, Halfling, Dwarf, Tiefling, Drow, Half-Drow, Githyanki, and Vampire Spawn. Early access will also offer the following classes and subclasses: Fighter (Battle Master, Eldritch Knight), Wizard (Evocation, Abjuration), Rogue (Arcane Trickster, Thief), Ranger (Hunter, Beast Master), Cleric (Life, Light, Trickery), and Warlock (Fiend, Great One).

Every other class (including the likes of Sorcerer and Barbarian) will be added by the time the final game launches, presumably alongside more race and subclass options across the board.

Is there a Baldur’s Gate 3 trailer?

Yes! The opening cinematic was released in late February 2020.

In it, the player character is implanted with some kind of brain parasite by a Mind Flayer, and after the powerful psionic creature attacks the city of Baldur's Gate in a massive tentacled ship, it's attacked and taken down by some dragons. There's some kind of explosion, and the ship is seemingly teleported away at the last second.

There was also an early access release window trailer in June narrated by some kind of charming demon.

Does Baldur’s Gate 3 have multiplayer?

It’s 2020. Of course, Baldur’s Gate 3 has multiplayer! We have yet to find out if this will be available during early access, but the full game is intended to include a co-op mode. In the online mode, your custom character can join a party with three other players. The player quartet can take on missions together to dominate the region.

Each player will have access to the others' dialogue trees to see the options your pals are grappling with saying.

Who is developing Baldur’s Gate 3?

While BioWare spearheaded the first two Baldur’s Gate titles, the franchise has since been given to Larian Studios. You might know them from creating the Divinity franchise, which includes titles like Divinity: Original Sin and Divinity: Original Sin II. In other words, it’s in good hands.

This also means the gameplay is somewhat like Divinity games, taking on the turn-based combat elements.

What platforms will Baldur’s Gate 3 be released on?

Baldur’s Gate 3 will be available on PC and Google Stadia.

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