updated 01:36 am EST, Sat November 24, 2012
Classic game returns after 15 years for Mac, PC, iPad
Originally planned for a September release, the long-awaited enhanced edition of the party-based, turn-based RPG Baldur's Gate -- which includes both the original game and the expansion Tales of the Sword Coast -- will be out on November 28, and Overhaul Games has released a new trailer promoting the title and its imminent release for the Mac, the iPad, and Windows. The new version of the game sports some 400 enhancements, including some new content.
Publisher Beamdog has worked with senior D&D writer Dave Gross to help create some of the improvements, such as linking the missions together more coherently, three new playable sidekicks, a new dungeon (The Black Pits) not in the original release and cross-platform multiplayer capability so that players can go against other players using Macs, PCs or iPads (an Android version of the game is expected but there is no announced release date yet). Windows buyers can "pre-load" the game now, but cannot play it until release day.
In addition to the new players and new adventure level, the game also features reworked, higher-resolution versions of the original graphics, along with new cinematics. Classes and sub-races have been brought over from the original sequel Baldur's Gate II, and the game has iPad user interface conventions for multitouch zooming and swiping on the iPad version.
The Mac and PC versions of the game will sell for $20, while the iPad version will cost $10 (and will offer the new characters as in-app purchases, whereas they are included in the Mac and PC versions). Baldur's Gate is one of the few dungeon crawler-type games that is officially licensed from the original Dungeons & Dragons makers Wizards of the Coast, and is based on the second-edition ruleset. The game utilizes the Infinity engine for its graphics but retains the classic look.
Some of the original Bioware developers have participated in the new version, ensuring that all classes, races and plot points are retained but eliminating residual bugs from the original, which debuted in 1998. An enhanced version of the sequel Baldur's Gate II is expected sometime in 2013, more than 12 years after its debut.