A Rpg Classic
It was the time when personal computers were considered amazing if they had 10GB capacity and the games were spectacular even if they looked like funny figures full of large pixels. Baldur’s Gate belongs to that age.
I recently had the fortune of replaying the game I hadn’t played in over 10 years. When my husband first discovered the CD in one of them forgotten boxes I couldn’t help but laugh. And then I decided to just play it for fun and reminisce the old times. Later I discovered that reminiscing the old times is not always as fun as you think it might be :))) I played for a few hours and then of course I quit and set it aside. But it reminded me of simpler times and simpler games. So simple that in the intro video you hear a knight speak in a complete yank accent as if he was ready to take off his armour and rush to the baseball field. It was hilarious.
Character creation then meant only the stats and the class. The avatar you had for the entirety of the game was but a frame on the right of your screen which you chose among the already prepared icons. The avatar you saw in the game was a standard, funny, pixel man or woman and the only modification you could do was the colour of what he/she was wearing. As said...simpler times :)
When I say simple though, I do not mean easy. I laughed a lot when I died at my first attempt to fight some mobs. I also realized that my hand constantly went to the keyboard to move my character. I suppose I have pretty much forgotten how it was like to play a game only with the mouse. No F5 quicksave was possible of course so you have to click an awful lot of screens to save the game and yet I insisted on pressing F5 every time I wanted to save the game. But these weren’t the only things that I kept doing wrong. Apparently in the old times we used to play the games with a notepad and a pen next to our screen, why? Because there are no quest indicators on the screen. It is pure role-play. You have a journal where you might find the whole history of your quests if you care to read it all and you have to remember (or write down) when you met the quest giver and where to find him or her. That was a pain in the neck I tell you :))) The sounds were primitive and repetitive, the landscape funny…
We used to play that game over and over again with an awestruck expression on our faces and there was no other topic in our conversations except for Baldur’s Gate. We even had purchased the soundtrack CD to play it during our D&D on paper games. We were drooling over the keyboard to play the game and we used to sit for hours not realizing that the night had met the day.
One cannot help but think what will be the face of gaming world in ten years from now. Maybe no computers will be necessary then. Maybe all you need will be a chip of some sort and you will only close your eyes to find yourself within the game, not as an avatar but as an actual character. It is not so farfetched when you think of the impossible improvements in games from the times of Baldur’s Gate (1998) to our days. Personally I both cannot wait and cannot help but fear.
So here is to good old Baldur’s Gate! *Raises her glass in salute* You may be old, and you may be outmoded. But we will never forget the fun we had with you :)