Interesting Facts And Trivia About Baldur’s Gate 1 And 2

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Baldur’s Gate 3 has every kind of social media covered with the fandom’s favorite romantic interests, a treasure trove of memes, and the fantasy concepts that everyone is delighted to see. Any sequel that’s this impressive is bound to get you thinking about what came before it.

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Related: Baldur’s Gate 3 Fans, Please Don’t Forget About The First Two Games

For those of us who can’t get the Baldur’s Gate: Enhanced Edition or are simply caught in the eternal cycle of starting a new playthrough for Baldur’s Gate 3, here are some facts from both prequel games that can expand your knowledge of this fantasy RPG series and its characters.

10 Baldur’s Gate 1 And 2 Were Developed By BioWare

Screenshot of Baldur's Gate 1 and 2 Enhanced Edition start screen

Launched in 1998, the first Baldur’s Gate was one of the greatest cRPGs from the early decades of computer video games that would shape future games in the genre. The sequel came out two years later, and you can see some of the telltale marks of this studio in these games. Think choice-based narratives and expansive lore like BioWare’s popular RPG series, Mass Effect and Dragon Age.

Based on the second edition of Dungeons & Dragons, both original games were released closer to the third edition in the D&D timeline. The third entry was developed by Larian Studios and fans are very pleased with its work, hoping for remakes of the first two games.

9 Gameplay Resembles A Tabletop Style

Friendly Arm Inn from Baldur's Gate 1

There are several elements of the first two games that will evoke some nostalgia for the tabletop RPG that inspired them. The narration between chapters to recap recent events feels like a Dungeon Master setting the scene, and the storybook-like artwork adds to that atmosphere.

You can see the area map from wherever you are, in cities especially, exploring with the camera stick. But you won’t see any people or potential enemies there until you get closer. This navigation mechanic was designed for computer gaming of the time, yet it also emulates a tabletop map for a session of in-person D&D.

8 Xzar And The Fourth Wall

Xzar talking to a deceased Montaron in Baldur's Gate 1

You couldn’t call this skilled necromancer mentally well, but it turns out he might have a reason. If you click on Xzar enough in the original games (not the Enhanced Edition), he eventually tells you to stop it. This implies that he knows he’s a video game character. Some of his quotes reference real-world works as well, adding to this impression of seeing through the fourth wall separating you and the game.

Related: Best Moments The Game Broke The Fourth Wall

His grip on reality seemingly isn’t helped by his practice of necromancy. If his neutral evil traveling companion — Montaron from the Zhentarim mercenary company — falls in battle, Xzar will continue to talk to him in one-sided discussions.

7 Khalid Has A Stutter

Speaking to Khalid in Friendly Arm Inn from Baldur's Gate 1

Unlike the usual archetypes of characters with a stutter, Khalid is incredibly capable and can be very fierce when situations push him to it. He is the anxious sort and doesn’t see himself as leadership material, which he regularly admits to. But his hidden resolve (that even he doesn’t know about) is a unique trait in a character with a disability that’s almost always associated with meekness.

You have to assume that his wife, Jaheira, recognized this capability in him all along. While his stutter is implied to have more typical origins with an abusive parent, the revelation of his willpower and skills is a refreshing change of pace.

6 Jaheira And Minsc Are In Every Game

Imoen saving player the and the party from prison in Baldur's Gate 2

Between Jaheira’s convictions as a woman of great confidence and Minsc’s endless — if quirky — charm, it’s only to be expected that these two would be featured throughout the series. They need to be encountered in the first game before you can accept them into your party, but will be there from the beginning in the second.

It’s compelling to see Jaheira’s character grow from a determined woman traveling as a Harper with her husband to becoming a decisive and steady influence on the Coast and in your party. Minsc brings his trademark carefree atmosphere with him everywhere, despite his head injuries being the presumed cause of his demeanor.

5 Why Choose One Class When There Are Combos?

Screenshot of class menu for Half-Elf in Baldur's Gate 2

Want to boost your party as a cleric and get in on the brawls as a fighter? Love hurling spells as a mage and picking locks as a thief? The first two games in the Baldur’s Gate series don’t make you choose between either of your great loves. Sometimes, they even offer a blend of three classes.

Well, depending on the species you selected for your character. A dwarf would be an illusionist rather than a mage in any combination, for example, and mixed classes that include mages are not an option at all for half-orcs. Even the limitations add to the detailed immersion of these games.

4 Party Reputation Affects Everything

Screenshot of Information menu from Baldur's Gate 2, showing average reputation

Instead of the character approval ratings in Baldur’s Gate 3, both prequels have a number-based reputation for the party based on your actions. This rating determines who will gleefully be part of your wandering band of adventurers, who will storm off, what shops charge you, how civilians and law enforcement respond to your team, and even your abilities or potentially your class.

Related: Best Morality And Reputation Systems In Video Games, Ranked

Ranges on this numeric scale will have a word to go with them, which lets you know where your group falls on the moral spectrum. Despised is for one through four and Heroic defines 17 through 20 as your team’s reputation.

3 Reactions To Removing Party Members

Dialogue from Xzar after being removed from party in Baldur's Gate 1

With about a handful of spots available and a gallery of characters to choose from, BioWare gave these games a lot of replay value because you couldn’t get to know every character in a single playthrough. Various characters also react differently to being taken out of your party.

Most will stay where you left them, and some will go back to where you found them. Certain party members will only go together, such as couples. But others will leave the party for good if they’re removed to make room for someone else, you turn them down with specific characters on your team, or you’re just too rude to them.

2 Importing A Character

Screenshot of Character import menu in Baldur's Gate 2

Because the main character is technically the same person continuing from where the first game left off, you can import your character into the sequel to keep that story continuity going for yourself. Save imports weren’t possible, but choosing alignment and reassembling your favorite party was possible (for the most part).

Having your one-of-a-kind character return for the next phase of the story was exciting enough that some people are hoping for this feature to make a comeback. If there’s ever a Baldur’s Gate 4 on the horizon, the hard part would be trying not to continue every single file — a battle many of us will gladly lose.

1 Lawful Good Isn’t Allowed

Screenshot of Alignment selection for Baldur's Gate 2

Warning: Spoilers for the plot of Baldur’s Gate 1 and 2While Lawful Good isn’t exactly the most exciting alignment, it seems like an odd omission from the selection screen when you start up the Enhanced Edition. This might be a bit of subtle foreshadowing, however. It could very well be that, because the protagonist is the offspring of Bhaal, the deity of murder who is decidedly lawful evil, you were metaphysically incapable of choosing this orderly and good-natured alignment.

There is a measure of choice when you’re Bhaalspawn, though. Good choices bring pleasant or bittersweet dreams that bestow supportive abilities, and malicious choices get you nightmares that the protagonist doesn’t seem all that upset by and accompanying offensive abilities.

Next: Baldur’s Gate 3: Do You Need To Play Baldur’s Gate 1 And 2 First?

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