The Bhaalspawn saga comes to an end in one of the most unforgiving & engrossing D&D games to date. Baldur’s Gate 2 is still in my top 5 games of all time and one I still play every few years, it’s one of the few RPG’s that never held the players hand, you really had to think from planning your team, spells and positioning a simple fight could end in disaster. Shadows of Amn & Throne of Bhaal together held over 100+ hours of game play and with the Enhanced Edition we get new quests, companions, maps, items and the arena mini game.
The Enhanced Edition runs in wide screen with a more attractive user interface, we can hide the UI sidebars to keep the screen less cluttered which is a nice touch. The new companions are well voiced, three of the new companions are from the first Enhanced Edition and the last new companion is a much needed thief in Shadows of Amn called Hexxat.
Neera was an interesting character who I took into my party early on after I encountered her in the Bridge District, the other wild mages give some new quests from her story but if your like me and complete them all you will arrive back at the camp ready to hand them in and find everyone has been taken by the Red Wizards and the quests becomes uncompleted. Her story is quite enjoyable and the rewards a really nice.
Dorn is an evil brute I had him in the party briefly but for me being the good guy I just couldn’t stand him, perfect for the evil players but just not for me.
Hexxat is very mysterious when we meet her in the Copper Cornet, turns out this was Clara who is under Hexxat’s control, I really wish the developers gave us the option to save Clara instead of swapping her for Hexxat (Vampire) it would have been more interesting. Anyway Hexxat’s quests involve picking up items for a mysterious character so she can have her freedom, its pretty simple with some nice experience.
Rasaad becomes very powerful in BG2 with the proper equipment a worthy addition to your party, I had him in my party for a long time but his quest never popped up for some reason. From what I have heard during Rasaad’s quest you can meet another companion but I hear its just a joke companion and it isn’t worth it.
After playing through the entire game there were a few bugs I came across, one that wouldn’t allow me to exit buildings, attack or search boxes, a simple restart of the game fixes that but it becomes annoying having to do it every few minutes. The only other big game breaking bug was in Chapter 5 when Solaufein needs us to rescue the Matron’s daughter, once at their base he wouldn’t summon the mind flayers to him. The console commands to recreate him didn’t fix it so I had to skip that chapter which was upsetting as I always liked The Underdark.
Baldurs Gate: EE & Baldurs Gate 2: EE
The two enhanced editions were wonderful a great experience to replay, but I feel the new areas and companions don’t really change much of the original game. For Shadows of Amn & the rushed Throne of Bhaal I would have liked to see some of the original quests that where removed, the encounters like Shar-teel in ToB, and I believe Kivan was meant to be included SoB. Overhaul Games could have really made the game their own by giving us content that was meant to be included then added their own content. To get some of the cut content we have to download the mods Unfinished Business & Ascension but that’s for another personal play through.
In all, the few bugs didn’t ruin the experience it was a joy to replay this classic for about the 10th time. I do believe the Enhanced Editions are worth the price but wished the developers did a little bit extra to maybe fill the areas that Baldurs Gate 2 missed, a example would be the strongholds once you complete the quest chain they become pointless. I only regret not taking one of the new characters with me in Throne of Bhaal to see what their epilogues were but that’s for a new play through. The new content doesn’t add much too the original but is nice just to have Overhaul did a great job as there where no crashes just a few bugs. I am glad to re-experience this game for it’s nostalgia and the many good fond memories from over the years. I do wonder if they will make Enhanced Editions of the Icewind Dale games or my personal favourite Planescape: Torment.
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I played: 93+hours
The great memories of past adventures playing through this game.
A few really annoying bugs.