- Alone Against the World: Baldur’s Gate Without Companions [EPISODE 1] - The first part of Eltimar's solo journey through the grim world of Baldur's Gate.
An Anticlimactic Revenge Story
During the night I was ambushed by a strange man in a really cool set of armor. I mean seriously, where did he get his armor? I want to find that blacksmith and commission him to make an even cooler, spikier set for me. Anyways, Gorion said something about not giving me up, really nice foster father. He told me to run away, so I took a passive jog about 200 feet south and set up camp for the night. I think I am pretty safe here despite the explosions earlier.
Like all good protagonists at the beginning of a revenge story arc, we run away, unable to really help in this clash of powerful NPCs. We awaken in the morning some two hundred feet south from the fight and apparently no one really went to follow us, because it would have been pretty easy to do. We are now on our own again… or are we?
No. We are not. First we have to deal with our friend Imoen who, despite being called a brat and sent skulking away in the first part, has decided to come along and help us. No matter what we say she will join the group, but not for long. A few arrows will put her out of commission and we can safely loot her body and remove her from the group, ensuring she stays dead forever. Hopefully she doesn’t have an important story-centric role in Baldur’s Gate 2… oh wait.
I think I have some strange power over people. Imoen insisted she come along with me. A decision I found completely unacceptable. But even when I shot her with a few arrows to drive her off, she just stood there with her big dumb eyes watching me. Finally, I couldn’t take it anymore and put her down. I will need to test this power further.
Hunting for Vict… XP
This strategy works very effectively because the AI is really, really dumb, it targets the closest enemy, which should be your rabbit all the time. Make sure your rabbit is consistently closer to your enemy than you are and you should have free reign to fire away.
You should also probably head north to where Gorion died and pick up a belt and a letter. The letter is a little long winded, but basically it boils down to “Hey your ward is in danger, maybe GTFO of Candlekeep.”
For those of you in the know, “E” is actually Elminster, the sage of Shadowdale and arguably one of the most powerful characters in the Forgotten Realms mythos. He also could have pretty easily solved this entire situation single-handedly if he had deigned to show up when Gorion was getting beaten to death, but I digress. Grab the loot (including the goodies dropped by the dead attackers) and continue on.
Montaron is a neutral evil halfling fighter/thief. Xzar is a chaotic evil psychopathic necromancer. Both of them make great additions to your team if you are playing an evil character, and both of them make an absolutely terrible addition to your team if you are playing a good character. Either way, we need their gear because… well we don’t really, but it would be nice to have.
Welcome them lovingly into your group and then get one of them to kill the other, before finishing the last one off. I have always found it amusing that people who join your group will immediately submit to your absolute will and do things like kill their own friends just because you ask. Remove them from the group just like you did with Imoen.
Another display of my strange power. I met a crazy man and his little friend. When they joined my party, I told the mage to kill his friend and he did! Even though I am pretty sure they were evil, the halfling just stood there and let the rest of us murder him in cold blood without even trying to get away or fight back. Then after he was lying dead on the ground, I killed the crazy man, and the same thing happened. He just stood there with his insane eyes and let me finish him off. I should talk to someone about this effect I have on people.
The Danger Zone
So the first thing that will happen when you arrive one zone to the east is that a man in a strange wizard hat will approach you. Unsurprisingly, he is a wizard, and is also the aforementioned Elminster. Look who finally decided to show up a few hours late.
Well, he wants you to indulge him. Call him out on his stupid behaviour. Pestering people on the road is not very well adjusted (said the man who just murdered three playable npcs in cold blood). Anyways he will again remind you to go to the Friendly Arms Inn. The game really takes great pains to remind you where to go. He then wanders off.
Oh as just an interesting tidbit, Elminster is actually the creation of Ed Greenwood, the creator of the Forgotten Realms campaign setting. It is widely speculated that Elminster is Ed Greenwood’s persona in Forgotten Realms.
Anyways, back to the game. This is a zone that is chock full of danger. Be a little bit cautious with navigating this zone and save a lot. There are a few places you want to visit before heading north to the Friendly Arms Inn though. Just north of the center you will encounter a man by the name of Aoln. He will let you know there are dangerous beasties in the area and that he lost his whole group fighting an Ogre Mage. Ogre Mages are pretty nasty so this isn’t surprising.
Stick to the central part of the map for now. You are travelling east. We have an Ogre of our own to kill before we leave this zone. This fight will cause you problems if you haven’t mastered the art of making him chase your rabbit. Simply employ the same strategy you did with the wolves and bears and you should be fine.
Once you have taken out the Ogre, feel free to loot him for his two belts. Don’t put either of them on just yet. It is time to return to the road and head north to the Friendly Arm Inn. We will finish up this zone later on.
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The Not-So-Friendly Arm Inn
First things first is to take an immediate left upon entering the wall. There is a house with a woman in it. Just barge in and talk to her. She has a quest for us. She wants us to get back a flame dance ring from some hobgoblins north of the keep. This is something we can easily help her with and it’s worth a bunch of experience so say yes. She also apparently does not care if you lockpick and take her belongings, so definitely rob her as well.
Head east towards the entrance to the keep proper. There is going to be a rather troubling fight here. I would advise saving before approaching the oddly robed man standing in front of the door. Hint… he is not your friend and is a higher level than you. Its advised that you shoot him before he talks to you, so that you can get the first hit, but if your honor dictates you wait for a good reason to fight then you do you. After killing him loot his body.
He will have a few scrolls on him. If you do not have those spells in your spellbook save and write them in. You will get some experience from this and it will give you a wider array of tools for later in the game. The scrolls he has are Armor, Burning Hands, and Magic Missile. He also has a letter that tells us there is a 200g bounty on our head. Kind of a small amount of gold for murder in my opinion but… I guess lives aren’t worth much on the Sword Coast.
Head on into the keep and you will be approached by another stranger named Jopi. It is weird that we know the names of these people that we have never met, but he will tell us that the roads to Baldur’s Gate are cut off. That is never a good sign. He will remind you that there is an iron shortage. The game isn’t subtle about reminding you of key plot points. Bandits… Iron Shortage… we get it. In the far left corner of the room are two named individuals that you have heard about before.
Jaheira is a True Neutral Half-Elf Fighter/Druid. She is actually a pretty good character no matter what kind of group you are playing, but she is also not going to be coming along with us. Khalid is a Neutral Good Half-Elf Fighter with only 15 strength. He is fairly awful aside from his con, which is a pretty respectful 17. Anyways, it is time to introduce them to the cruel hand of fate. Recruit them into your party, strip them of their gear to make the imminent murder easier, and get them to kill each other.
I did it again! This time with a married couple. Khalid and Jaheira, Gorion’s friends, joined my party for a brief time. I actually told the wife to kill her husband and she did it without question. This fills me with a strange psychopathic joy! I wonder how many more people there are in the world that I can just convince to let me kill them so I can take their possessions.
I also murdered the wife though, in the middle of the keep’s great hall I might add. Though she was very hot and probably would have made a capable companion, my rabbit and I journey alone.
End of Part II
I hope you enjoyed this article and the murder-filled solo playthrough! I hope to see everyone for the next one!
GAMING NEWS & EXCLUSIVE GIVEAWAYS
DELIVERED STRAIGHT TO YOUR INBOX
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