Baldur’s Gate 3 (PC) Review

By Steven Mattern 24.03.2024

Review for Baldur’s Gate 3 on PC

The Dungeons & Dragons franchise has gone through a rocky history in the realm of video games. The property itself is so ripe for interpretations, but lately we've seen so few takes on the role-playing giant. Larian Studios stepped up the plate with Baldur's Gate 3 and after a lengthy years long early access run, the title finally hit full release. Coming out swinging with depth, scale and personality, Baldur's Gate 3 is what's promised and more; albeit with some performance hiccups on PC.

Baldur's Gate 3 follows the story of a group of adventurers all with the same affliction, a mind flayer tadpole in their head. What initially is a quest to rid themselves of the creatures, increases in scope to become a grand tale against the mind flayers and other adversaries. While not every party member has the most interesting background and motivations for joining the merry band, some became fast favorites like Karlach and Wyll. The story and narrative progressed naturally throughout our playtime, but NPC party members can fall immediately silent once an act's main story is complete before pressing on.

Screenshot for Baldur’s Gate 3 on PC

From the start of the first act, the world felt immense the whole way through with new events, encounters and conversations to partake in. The density of the maps are begging to be combed over, always keeping sessions fresh and exciting. Over the combat, some of the best moments lie in the conversations characters have. One caveat though is there is no voice acting for the player's character who began the interaction. With the voice acting of every NPC character and narrator being as excellent as it is, it's unfortunate that selecting dialogue options skips the opportunity for some extra voice acting.

Right from the onset, those familiar with the fifth edition of D&D should feel right at home. The character creation suite is robust with options for class, race and visual features. For those who would rather sidestep making an original character, an Origin character option can take its place that allows players to pick from the various NPC party members to start the journey. Regardless of which class is chosen however, the early level experience can be rather dull as it feels like it takes too long for some classes to have variety in their abilities. Physical classes especially like the Fighter class felt really strained in the early levels, prompting a switch off later down the road.

Screenshot for Baldur’s Gate 3 on PC

Once Act One's primary story is finished, switching classes is relatively painless. Since XP gained is shared between all party members, reshuffling the player character's class and NPC members in the group is seamless and adds a welcome element of experimentation. This is necessary because sometimees environments feel less interactable in battles than they should. Depending on the situation, those with bows and other ranged weapons have versatility with environmental objects in some arenas, but Baldur's Gate 3 lacks much freedom in bending the environments seen in Divinity Original Sin 2, Larian's previous title. More environmental interaction would also add some optional strategy when hit rates become super low. While not particularly difficult per se, hit rates on normal mode could benefit from more adjusting.

Online co-op worked surprisingly well, as it was our primary way of experiencing the journey. The drop in and drop out nature of a campaign is really welcome, unless adventurers aim to bring a custom character from one campaign to another. Playing with at least one other person felt natural, and it helps battles feel less bloated if one player isn't doing all of the decision making for every party member and companion one by one. One negative point discovered is that regardless of how important a conversation or cutscene is, the vast majority of them don't prompt automatically for players who aren't present unless they walk up to the one having the interaction and select Listen. This is a carryover from Divinity Original Sin 2 and hopefully Laerian can find a solution for a patch or in their next game.

Screenshot for Baldur’s Gate 3 on PC

On the note of PC performance, midrange configs won't have too much trouble running the title for most of the journey. Running the game bridging against max out settings at 1440p proved little challenge for a PC with a Ryzen 3600 and RX 5700 XT. Most of the time the experience had a relatively smooth framerate, so needless to say the optimization is impressive. There wasn't a chance to test split screen on the PC used for review, and late game areas with multiple enemies or characters on screen started to prove a challenge. Baldur's Gate 3 isn't a completely robust experience though. While the overall experience has been relatively bug free, the camera often became a burden. Playing with a controller, the camera can be hard to adjust in certain battles that take place indoors. Elevation is a huge part of combat spaces, and some enemies are hard to select when using abilities.

Screenshot for Baldur’s Gate 3 on PC

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 9 out of 10

Exceptional - Gold Award

Rated 9 out of 10

With a vast world to explore with varied stories and secrets to discover, Baldur's Gate 3 definitely shines. The cast is largely appealing and voice acting is top notch all-around, even if the storytelling and line delivery is varied in its pace. Character progression is somewhat weak in the opening levels but has a strong foundation for a great buildcraft experience, even if it lacks some on the fly experimentation seen in Larian's past efforts. Despite some performance woes in the later parts of the game and controller hangups, this is a journey worth taking for fans of Dungeons & Dragons or those new to the role playing field.




Larian Studios


Turn Based RPG



C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  9/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   


Comments are currently disabled

Subscribe to this topic Subscribe to this topic

If you are a registered member and logged in, you can also subscribe to topics by email.
Sign up today for blogs, games collections, reader reviews and much more
Site Feed
Who's Online?

There are 1 members online at the moment.