Despite multiple delays, the wait is almost over for the Early Access release of Baldur’s Gate 3 on Steam. To further get fans prepped for the adventures to come, Larian Studios released its eighth community update. This one goes over more of the RPG elements players will be able to enjoy, and it looks like there’s a lot, even in the launch build of Early Access. Baldur’s Gate 3 will feature a vast list of high-quality character creation options that include race/sub-race selections, classes, skills, and appearance tuning. Larian put in a lot of work to ensure that you can feel unique and even be identifiable by characters in the game.
The developers obviously set out with a goal to make Baldur’s Gate 3 the best it could be in terms of character creation. In today’s blog, the team first discussed how it created such visually impressive models and faces for players to relate to. It turns out that 3D scans of 40 different actors were taken to create the 150 heads featured in the game. The artists noted all of the details, even the blemishes on the skin, because they wanted to achieve the closest thing possible to photorealistic fantasy races.
Lead Character Artist Alena Dubrovina recollected about the vision Larian decided upon in early development. “When cinematic dialogues were introduced for BG3, we realized we needed to make a huge quality leap in our character art. We wanted to make characters look their best and put the bar very high. We had to be very innovative to make such a large range of heads and hit the quality level we wanted.”
A diverse world
Considering that the game has 16 races at launch, it must have been a challenge. The Baldur’s Gate franchise features everything from elves to dwarves, and even devils. Therefore, choosing the right templates to mold these races from sounds like the right decision. All in all, the results look stunning. Last but not least, you will be able to fully tailor and tweak the details of your character to your heart’s content. The game will feature an Appearance tab, which gives you access to options like skin tone, eye color, hair color, facial structure, voice, and more. You can also bet that certain races have unique modifiers.
Shape your identity and live with the decisions
Role playing elements have always been a staple of this series though, and Larian is taking things to the next level in this adventure. While many RPGs allow players to customize their looks and even race in certain instances, the appearances are largely cosmetic. However, in Baldur’s Gate 3, your character creation requires careful consideration. The political landscape in this world is complex, and your race will bring advantages and disadvantages with it.
You may choose the powerful Tieflings for their ability to wield fire, but are you willing to deal with the lack of sentiment most commoners afford you? That one city did get swallowed up by hellfire, afterall. Nobody’s saying you did it, but it could be a source of anxiety for others, regardless. Perhaps you may just want to choose a Human or a Wood Elf, which are both generally well regarded. The interesting thing about this identity dynamic though, is that it should create a highly tailored experience and provide great replayability. Furthermore, Larian promises even more races to come as the game progresses towards a full release.
In addition to your race, NPCs may recognize your skillsets. These in turn will grant unique dialogue options, which the developers have really drummed up in other recent news. So, choosing your skills will be important on several levels. You will be able to assign points to abilities like Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma, but you will also be able to define skills, too. If you fancy specialization in acrobatics to navigate fights and environments, you can focus in on that. Alternately, you may prefer stealth or deception.
As if that wasn’t enough already, you can also choose your classes and subclasses as you gain experience and level up. Baldur’s Gate 3 will feature six main classes including the Cleric, Fighter, Ranger, Rogue, Warlock, and Wizard. Each class will also contain at least two subclasses. And before you ask, yes there’s plenty of magic options throughout these. If you choose a class with access to magic, you’ll be able to select simple spells called Cantrips. There are also more advanced abilities that require cooldowns.
Now, we mentioned that they will evolve as you level up. Here’s how it generally works. Once you hit level 4 for instance, you’ll be able to select from a wide range of feats. Feats represent talents or an area of expertise that give characters special abilities. They embody training, experience, and abilities beyond what your base class provides. As far as the Early Access version goes, you will be stuck with the advancements you choose. Respec options are also being considered for later versions of the game though. It all sounds like a lot to take in, but we will find out all soon enough for ourselves.
There was also mention of customizing your background in the game. We take that as meaning a backstory, but Larian didn’t provide anymore detail about that. It seems like something that could make the cut though. The developers certainly spent a lot of time on other character creation options for Baldur’s Gate 3.
If you want to read on about the full list of races and their descriptions, be sure to explore the full community update blog. The Baldur’s Gate series has a lot of complexity to it, so you will definitely want the lore introduction.