Tobold's Blog
Friday, August 12, 2022
Baldur's Gate 3

Shamelessly putting Baldur's Gate 3 in the title as click bait, but this post applies to other early access or beta version games as well, in my case for example Wartales. I have both Baldur's Gate 3 and Wartales installed on my PC, with Baldur's Gate 3 already played 66 hours and Wartales 79 hours. But the last played date of both games is from last year. There have been various content updates and patches since I played these games last, but I am loath to play the new content before the final releases, which won't be before 2023. The games are stuck in some sort of limbo.

The danger I feel is that by playing the beta/early access version of a game too much, on release I am already so bored with the early part of the game, that I don't want to play it again to see the new parts. I am all for Baldur's Gate 3 having added the bard class and the gnome race recently, but if I now try out a gnome bard, he is going to start the game in the same mindflayer ship and move on to the same druids' grove as all previous characters I tried.

This harks back to something I said yesterday in a comparison of World of Warcraft and Diablo Immortal: WoW has many different starting zones based on your chosen race. Most other games don't have that, which makes the notion of playing alts less appealing. But multiples starting zones are expensive to produce, and the typical reviewer won't play a game repeatedly before giving a review score. So the feature won't improve the game's score and thus the developers' bonus.

What are the games that you have already played a beta/early access version and are now waiting for the release version?

I don't think I ever do that - if I go for early access games, they tend to be the sort that are basically finished and just getting polished. As for RPGs, I generally like the earliest parts anyway, so a restart on a full release wouldn't be a problem. But certainly I wouldn't be doing multiple restarts for incremental releases.

The ideal for me is a big content patch years after I have played - Into the Breach did that recently and has become my favourite game of the moment. I guess treating Baldur's Gate 3 etc. the way you are doing will give much the same effect. You get to enjoy a good game twice - what's not to like?
I can't see the problem. I don't differentiate between EA games and finished games. In either case I buy or download (Many being free.) the ones that interest me, play them for as long as they continue to interest me, stop when they cease to interest me, go back and play them again when and if my interest returns.

I don't care about finishing games so it makes no difference to me if I stop after 20% or 50% of the game or if I get to the end. In your example, I would consider I'd alrwady had more than my money's worth after 66 or 79 hours. I mean, how much value do you expect to get out of a single purchase?

These are video games, not houses or cars. They're not significant purchases. Not being able to do and see everything they might eventually include is a non-issue.
I think I have 3 early access games:
- Vampire Survivors
- My time at Sandrock
- Gloomhaven

Of those I only regularly play Vampire Survivors after the initial binge.
For MTAS I am waiting on the rest of the storyline to be 'release' ready, for Gloomhaven, when they finished coding all classes and the main campaign.
I don’t think that i have ever bought an early access game…
I have SOOOO many games in my library that i prefer to wait untill it is done.
For the same reason i often don’t buy on launch as you get a better and often cheaper product 6-12 months later.

I have previously tried beta versions of games, but only games where the story is not an important part of the game, as i don’t want that spoiled in a beta version.
@Trenjeska, Gloomhaven is out of early access. All classes are in and the campaign is complete. They've even added Jaws of the Lion as DLC and the solo scenarios are due to come out in September.
@Matt Oh nice.
Seems I wasn't paying attention there.
Time to start a campaign with my gf, without having to dig up the 10kg box after we moved.
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