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Baldur's Gate (2)  


All in all, you gather six characters. The team must be balanced; only the main character that you create can have innate features given by you. As for the rest, you find various individuals who volunteer to join you. In Baldur's Gate, people can be good, evil or neutral with three intensity degrees each. Of course you can take anyone in your team but if you mix good with evil you'll soon hear grumbles and you might be surprised by the breaking up of a general fight with real wounds and deaths among your own men. However, "men" is just a name as the races vary from dwarves to elf on a pretty wide range. It's not so bad to find out who hates who from the beginning because a gnome and an elf will never get along too well.

In addition, pay attention to the promises you make towards the person you take in your team. One of my favourite characters was a "ranger" half mad who would never separate for his head from a hamster that he seemed to hold very high in his esteem. Yet, because we were too late when we went to save his partner, he found properly to get into a fight that I couldn't stop otherwise than unloading him in a previous save (it would have been too unbearable to kill his hamster).

Anyway, keep your eyes wide open when you accept a new member in your team by kicking out an unwelcome one. Be careful because the one you're just firing might be inseparable from another who is priceless to you. Friendship (not to speak of marriage) is deeply observed in Baldur.

Something else that you should take into account is that most of the adventures accomplished as following the quests enhance your reputation. It's common sense, isn't it? Yes, but if you have "evil" characters in your team, they might take that a little bit too personally or they can even let you down if they reach the conclusion that they get "discredited" in your team.

A certain behaviour settled by the game by default can be attached to any individual or you can create yourself a script. For instance, he should attack by using a certain charm that you think is more suitable or just to run in certain situations. As for the artificial intelligence that sets the game, you can intervene through the little configuration utility that is installed along with the game depending on your knowledge of the power of your playing computer. I would grumble to that that if people move substantially faster once the great development of microprocessors, their trajectories are not getting any more intelligent. If you put them to go from A to B on the map you can wait them forever asking yourself what has happened but if you look for them you'll find them terribly trapped by a piece of fence or by some heap of barrels that they can't go around by their lives.

Finally, for those who can enjoy the happy hypostasis of playing Bladur's Gate in a network, characters may be imported. I don't know if things have been understood until this point or not yet but this is not a game for people under 14, not because one or two wantons may appear (no, nothing "interesting" as in Fallout happens) but because it's a game of patience and minuteness, one of the most completed playing machines that I have put my hands on lately. It's at the same time logical and with good image, sound, program so it's a game refused for those who only have the patience to shoot at everything that moves.

(to be continued)

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