“Do not release the strat!”

S-Rank Daddy’s Girl, episode 7

In which Our Stalwart Daughter plays a bullet-hell game to win, Our Vengeful Loli is defeated by Deus Ex Elf-Juice and Dad Power, The Maltese Doughball gets what he deserves, and Our Daddy-Hungry Countess rises to the occasion.

Verdict: Helvetica is dangerously close to overtaking Miriam for Best Girl status.

(cute dragonette foodie is unrelated, as usual)

Frieren, episode 10

Do not meddle in the affairs of Frieren, for she is subtle and quick to anger plays the long game. As she was taught.

Verdict: I am now officially Hot For Teacher.

Why I don’t really like Baldur’s Gate 3

So I made it to Act 3, started to accumulate side quests so that I could finally get into the titular city, and… went off to read a book instead. I just didn’t want to do the things they wanted me to do, and there was nowhere else to go. It’s made very clear that you’re in a Race Against Time to Stop The Bad Guys and Save The City, but you have to run around talking to pretty much every named NPC in each region to make sure that you stumble across half a dozen plot coupons to get the thing to do the thing that unlocks the thing that opens the door to start the fight to see the guy to get the other thing, and half of it isn’t actually necessary but you won’t know that until you finally trip the flag that lets you progress the plot.

Meanwhile, most of the people I helped in Act 1 died horribly in Act 2, and the ones who didn’t are worse off, and most decisions I got to make ranged from Kinda Evil to Mostly Evil. And for all the apparent freedom in experiencing the content, you’re welded to the rails of this story, unable to even revisit the earlier areas if there was something that you missed.

For instance, in Act 1, you have the opportunity to rescue a young tiefling girl who stole something (for a pretty good reason). If you do so, you reunite her with her loving parents. If you stumble across her in Act 2, she’s been separated from her parents and asks you to find them. If you don’t find them before moving to Act 3 (and they’re hard to find even if you know what building they’re in), that quest gets auto-closed with a poor outcome, because you can never reenter the region and locate their tortured-to-death corpses. But you want to find them and shatter her hopes, because then you can recruit her for a plot fight later.

Honestly, the most positive thing I was able to do recently was tame a flesh-eating monster so that I could pet it at my camp. It still goes out and eats anything and anyone it can find, but who am I to make moral judgements, some kind of hero?

The most annoying thing that happened in Act 2 was that I didn’t talk to everyone on the first floor of the inn before going upstairs to see the Very Important NPC that I was specifically directed to speak to right away. As a result, one significant quest chain was closed off by the ensuing massacre, but I didn’t find out until several hours later when I groveled over the map searching for things that would be closed off by advancing to Act 3. There’s even a special cutscene where you lament the fact that you couldn’t make the world a better place.

Oh, and when I met the little girl, well after the massacre, I could tell her to wait for me at the inn with a friendly NPC. Who was dead, along with most of the people she knew from Act 1.

I’d like to play a game that used their D&D engine but had completely different writers and less grimdark epic railroading.

(true story: I gave up on the original Baldur’s Gate for a long time because I missed one tiny little corner of the map that contained a flag I needed to trip in order to enter the titular city; there was literally nothing left for me to do until I found it, and it was boring)

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