5 things in Baldur’s Gate 3 that make me want to scream

Baldur's Gate 3
(Image credit: Larian Studios)

I love Baldur’s Gate 3. Don’t get it twisted. I LOVE Baldur’s Gate 3! It completely consumed my entire weekend as I dumped 30+ hours into Act I. Of course, I’m not very far in the grand scheme of things, but despite everything I adore about it, there are some things that frustrated me throughout my experience.

Some of these issues I have are likely deliberate choices by Larian Studios, while others seem like complete oversights. I hope some if not all of these could be resolved in future updates, as Larian Studios is still releasing an impressive amount of updates post-launch.

Here are 5 things in Baldur’s Gate 3 that make me want to scream.

Overlapping features

This one put me into a stupor while creating my character. Abilities, spells and skill proficiencies can overlap between your race, class, and background with no added bonus. The game doesn’t detect any overlap and thus does not give you the option to adjust any features.

For example, if you play a Wood Half-Elf Criminal, you’re losing out on another potential skill because both the Half-Elf race and Criminal background provide a proficiency in Stealth. Another common overlap is when you multi-class and you double-up on a spell. The game is nice enough to tell you which is better and will default to that version, but that doesn’t solve the issue of waste. 

Like in actual D&D 5e, there should be a choice to swap out the redundant feature.

Any face for any race for any body

Ugh, this also put me out while creating my character. I wanted to recreate a D&D character that I’ve held near and dear to my heart over the long years I’ve played the tabletop game, but I was sorely disappointed when I got to the character creator. All the masc faces are ugly (sorry not sorry). But all the fem faces are gorgeous. So why can’t I use them on a masc body?

Baldur's Gate 3

(Image credit: Larian Studios)

Baldur’s Gate 3 lets you choose your pronouns and body types while remaining as sensitive as it can, but it needs to go a step further and open up the diversity in character creation. I want to be able to use the fem faces on masc bodies. 

The faces shouldn’t be limited by race, either. I know lore-junkies will scream their head off about that request, but this is a fantasy game. It shouldn’t matter if someone wants to put an Orc head on a Gnome body! And that’s another thing, too — the Orc faces are also ugly. I would love to play an Orc, but that option is completely thrown out because of the limited and, honestly, disrespectful selection.

Rogue problems

I invite you to imagine a scaffolding, and beneath that scaffolding is a boss that needs killing, and sitting atop that scaffolding is a Rogue Assassin ready to one-shot this boss with a special arrow, no problem. Well, yes problem. Lots of problems.

Baldur's Gate 3

(Image credit: Larian Studios)

First issue I discovered: You cannot Sneak Attack with special arrows. Why is this an issue? Well, mechanically, Sneak Attack is something you have to manually trigger as a separate attack, so you can’t stack a special arrow and Sneak Attack. This should be a prompt when any attack meets the appropriate conditions, like how Barbarians get a prompt for Reckless Attack if they miss. But it’s not, so damn your special arrows.

Another issue is the Rogue Assassin’s Assassinate ability, which prompts a critical hit if the enemy is surprised and you successfully hit the target. However, this ability doesn’t trigger unless you’re in combat. So even if you attack an enemy that’s completely unaware of your presence, and you, I don’t know, surprise them, the Assassinate ability still won’t trigger. What’s the point of my assassin if they can’t be assassinating? I get that you can boost initiative bonuses and still have this be effective in combat, but the state of combat should not impact one’s abilities.

I just want to do a hundred points of damage to a boss in one strike, is that really so bad? {Insert cat pleading face}

Cantrips? More like CanYouTakeAShortRestPlease

Mage Hand — one of the most useful spells in D&D. It’s quick, versatile, doesn’t take concentration, and lasts a whole minute. But in Baldur’s Gate 3 it can act as a combatant as well. Great, right? No.

Baldur's Gate 3

(Image credit: Larian Studios)

In a trade for its usefulness in combat, Mage Hand has now been reduced to a Short Rest cooldown. That is such a bad deal. There are only two Short Rests per day before you have to take a Long Rest. That means you can cast Mage Hand only three times a day. That’s not how a Cantrip is supposed to work at all. 

Get rid of Mage Hand as a combatant — I don’t need it as that, and let me use it as intended. Or even better, limit its use in combat to once per Short Rest and let me use it outside of combat as much as I want. 

This isn’t the only feature that comes with a new Short Rest stipulation. Find Familiar suffers a similar issue.

Goblin Camp aggression

Okay, this one ruined me for hours (light spoilers ahead). One of the overarching narratives of Act I is the Grove vs. Goblins. I am siding with the Grove on this playthrough, but I managed to talk my way into the Goblin camp without issue.

Baldur's Gate 3

(Image credit: Larian Studios)

Once you save a certain important NPC, they task you with killing the three Goblin leaders and state that it could be done stealthily. Fair enough. So, I go on my merry way to seek out the Goblin leaders. I managed to get one of them alone; they got one-shot killed with a level two Divine Smite and then tossed into a pit. Easy. No one noticed, and everyone was friendly with me.

The second one was tougher. I couldn’t get them alone and they were sitting on a throne in front of everyone. Imagine a scaffolding — yes, this is the same exact scenario I mentioned earlier. Well, regardless of my Rogue issues, I managed to murder them without triggering combat and without being discovered (it still took a couple of out-of-combat rounds). Awesome, right? Nope. Goblins were pissed at me.

What did I do wrong? Should I not directly kill them? Alright, let’s try another method. So then I cast Minor Illusion over a rickety bridge and lead the boss over there. I shot the support beam with a crossbow and down went the boss into oblivion. A workplace accident! It could have happened to anybody. But that was the problem, it didn’t happen to anybody, it happened to the boss, and the Goblins didn’t care if I was undiscovered. The moment that this boss dies, the Goblin camp turns hostile. 

I spent hours trying to perfect this kill. Eventually I took some deep dives on Reddit and FextraLife to find out that everyone has experienced the same thing. It is designed this way. As soon as the leader dies, the Goblins turn on you. This is such a spit in the face to the player’s agency and ability to handle situations covertly. 

I haven’t touched Baldur’s Gate 3 after learning the truth. However, when I get back, I’m going to murder that whole Goblin camp. What’s the point of being a sneaky little devil if it’s going to land me in the same place? Open murder it is.

{Insert frustrated face}

Dishonorable mentions

There are many little things in Baldur’s Gate 3 that send me reeling. That doesn’t stop me from loving the heck out of it. But here are some honorable mentions.

Baldur's Gate 3

(Image credit: Larian Studios)

Every time I accidentally Dash instead of Hide or Hide instead of Dash I want to scream — why is there no undo button?

Why do I have to switch back and forth between Explorer and Balanced mode to mess with the multiclassing? It’s just an unnecessary step. I want a story-focused experience, not a bat to my knee caps.

This is probably the PS5’s fault, but why the hell is there a save file limit? I literally hit the cap in hour two of my journey (YES I SAVE A LOT OKAY).

Shared inventory in camp! Please, if I go to camp, I should not have to bring every member in and out of my party like a mad game of musical chairs to manage their inventory and gear.

Spellbooks — why can’t I see what my wizard has available when I’m shopping without him? Even when I’m shopping with him I have no idea what he has or doesn’t have unless I screenshot his spellbook. I can see which items Gale can eat, but not which spells he’s learned? Come on.

Like I said, some of my issues here can totally be resolved via an update, but others are just criticisms of deliberate choices that likely won’t change. I love Baldur’s Gate 3, but sometimes it makes me want to tear my hair out.

Rami Tabari

Rami Tabari is an Editor for Laptop Mag. He reviews every shape and form of a laptop as well as all sorts of cool tech. You can find him sitting at his desk surrounded by a hoarder's dream of laptops, and when he navigates his way out to civilization, you can catch him watching really bad anime or playing some kind of painfully difficult game. He’s the best at every game and he just doesn’t lose. That’s why you’ll occasionally catch his byline attached to the latest Souls-like challenge.