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Former Dragon Age Writer Believes We Won't See Baldur's Gate 3 Influence on RPGs for a Few More Years

David Gaider shared his opinion on Dragon Age: The Veilguard's new trailer.


It is nearly impossible not to compare Dragon Age: The Veilguard and Baldur's Gate 3. After BG3's explosive success, every upcoming game we'll have to look back at Larian's "new standard." However, despite players' desire for games to be of similar quality, David Gaider, the former BioWare writer who used to work on Dragon Age titles, doesn't think we will see its influence "for a few more years yet."

You can probably imagine why. Nowadays, AAA games' production cycles take 5-6 years, so by the time Baldur's Gate 3 came out, many big titles had already been in development for some time, so they wouldn't start over to replicate Larian's experience.

And while it was launched in Early Access back in 2020, "few people had any inkling – even at Larian – that BG3 would be as successful as it was."

Still, I have high hopes for The Veilguard as I believe this is the last chance for BioWare to get back into RPG-making. The development just took too long and changed many times, so dragging it out any longer would be career suicide, in my opinion.

With barely any footage revealed, the game has already gained many haters, mostly due to the action combat the studio is so proud of, which got criticized mostly for being different from the one in Origins.

Continuing the comparison with Baldur's Gate 3, The Veilguard is promised to feature "spicy" scenes with companions, who are all pansexual this time. I'm glad to hear it, especially since a lot of players complained about Inquisition's characters being available for romance only for specific race/sexuality combinations. Gaider, however, is not so keen. 

"First off, the fandom is pretty split on romance design. A huge part just want whoever they want, and NOT getting to romance them is tantamount to a slap in the face. Others like characters with more agency, even (and maybe especially) if it doesn't align with their preferences. Nothing wrong with either desire, honestly. It all depends on what you want out of your game. We're not all here for the same reasons, OK? The only unfortunate aspect, in my experience, is that these two approaches are more or less diametrically opposed, from a design standpoint."

Apparently, Dragon Age writers realized that making a character romanceable limits "the types of stories they can tell" as they need to be appealing, and not every story is defined by being appealing to the player. This is why Varric can only be your friend in the game.

Gaider has expressed his mild distaste of BG3's approach to romance before, but it all boils down to personal preference, which might have affected how things were done in DA before.

We'll see how The Veilguard deals with romance this fall, this time without Gaider, unfortunately.

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