Nut Load. Mini reviews of games old and new. No fuss. No spoilers. Occasional shock face.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal (2001)

Genre: RPG | Players: 1-6 | Developer: BioWare

The official add-on to Baldur's Gate II, it adds a few new locations (including a massive dungeon) to "Shadows of Amn" (hereafter referred as "SOA"), and a big quest happening a few weeks after the end of SOA.  A quest that could lead you to godhood... or damnation.

The whole cast of NPCs from BGII is back, plus one massive surprise, on a new game.  First problem: being a standalone, you're cut from all the other towns previously visited, and from your base.  Say goodbye to anything that wasn't in your inventory, although most of the NPC come equipped with top notch stuff.

Yet this add-on has one big problem.  It’s linear.  Of course you choose in which order you'll do the dungeons, but that's pretty much it.  Much less side quests, and often related to the main one.  It would have been better if the player still had been somewhat able to get out of the area, or if he had been given a little more liberty in how to deal with some of the quests.  That's a big bummer after two games where you could in some occasions literally bullshit your way out of a fight.  Here, it's a splendid example of the D&D archetype: Door-Monster-Treasure-Side quest leading to more doors-etc, etc. bummer.

Other than that... new enemies, new items (including a fun feature to create very nasty little things by combining stuff. fun and useful.), new dungeons and new sights.  Although the environments are far from being as beautiful as in SOA.  All in all, good but not great.

Buyer's Guide:
Available on PC, Mac, and

3½ "I'll stick my poleaxe in your bottom and turn you into a battering ram!!"

Nutted by Docrate1 (If he comes at you with a poleaxe... abandon all hope.)

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