Retronauts Pocket Episode 14: Baldur’s Gate

Retronauts 14 Pocket cover

Finally, the unthinkable has happened: Retronauts is covering PC games! Of course, I kid—we’ve talked about plenty of PC games in the past (see my old episodes on Maniac Mansion and Day of the Tentacle for two notable examples), but there’s no denying a lot of our subject matter is console-centric. At least, that’s what the message boards and iTunes reviews have been saying. So I guess we have backer Dan Pryboda to thank for broadening our horizons a bit with his donation-backed suggestion to spend an entire Pocket episode talking about the phenomenal BioWare RPG Baldur’s Gate. And for this one, I brought out the big guns: Jason Wilson, whose name may ring a bell if you’ve been reading games coverage for the past decade. When thinking about who to invite on as our local Dungeons & Dragons expert, Jason immediately came to mind—and after you listen to this episode, I’m sure you’ll understand why. That said, enjoy our discussion, and thanks again to both Dan and Jason for being such good friends of the show!

Libsyn (47:17 | MP3 | 45.8 MB) | SoundCloud

This episode’s description:

“In 1998, Bioware changed the face of RPGs with Baldur’s Gate, which did an amazing job of translating the complex mechanics of Dungeons and Dragons into video game form–and not just the dungeon crawly stuff. Join Bob Mackey, Jeremy Parish, Ray Barnholt and Jason Wilson as they discuss one of BioWare’s best and gather their party before venturing forth.”

This episode’s musical breakdown:

  • 12:25 – Baldur’s Gate “Baldur’s Gate Theme” (Michael Hoenig)
  • 27:56 - Baldur’s Gate “Exploring the Plains” (Michael Hoenig)
  • 45:33 – Baldur’s Gate “Safe in Beregots” (Michael Hoenig)

Relevant links:

Baldur’s Gate: Enhanced Edition

Baldur’s Gate: Reloaded (3D Fan Remake)

Solo Assassin Run

Tales of the Sword Coast Bard Solo Run

Fixes/Mods for Original Baldur’s Gate

Essential Baldur’s Gate Mods

A Noob’s Guide to Baldur’s Gate

Your fleshy parts will remain free of space hamster wounds if you give us a nice review in the iTunes Music Store.

14 thoughts on “Retronauts Pocket Episode 14: Baldur’s Gate

  1. I HAVE BEEN WAITING SO LONG FOR A RETRONAUTS ABOUT BALDUR’S GATE!!!!!11
    Thank you so much for doing this. Most of my memories of 1999/2000 /2001 are a haze of Baldur’s Gate 1 and II, as I was an impressionable teen girl nerd.
    I feel like I learned so much patience and tactical knowhow from I and II, from the many times I took on angkhegs and Firkraag, as well as savespamming.
    I actually just started a new playthrough this week, and I can’t believe how much patience is required just to walk across the screen, never mind pathfind (I jumped the gun and bought the GOG original editions instead of the EE). On the whole, though, Baldur’s Gate was, along with Warcraft II and Creatures, my formative game and the one that made me a devoted and lifelong gamer, as well as a committed Bioware fan. As Retronauts is by far my favorite podcast, even when I have no personal experience with most old console games, I feel like this episode is a combination of all my favorite things, so thank you!!!!

  2. Thanks for my Baldur’s Gate pocket episode!
    I’ll now be the envy of all of my friends and girls will finally like me…..
    May Retronauts’ reign as the best games podcast long continue!

  3. Heh, this was right up my alley. I loved Baldur’s Gate so much that I bought a new PC chiefly so I could play the sequel (the first one already ran extremely choppy on my old PC from ’96).

    Kinda surprised at how the scope of the game is talked up in the podcast, though. The slice of the world one could travel to is rather compact. Sure, there’s a lot of wilderness you can theoretically wander through (although that was nothing compared to early 90s Ultima or Might and Magic games), but the actual adventure is rather small scale. BGII eliminated all the empty areas and was still a much longer (but also more linear) game.

    Damn, the Baldur’s Gate games are so good, I wish I had the 200+ hours to spare to go through the whole saga once again…

  4. I used to listen to Jason on Kat’s old RPG podcasts… Retronauts are bringing back the ghosts of podcasts past: Kat, Sharkey, Jason, et al.

    Please continue to bring these nostalgic MVPs to us via the magic of audio RSS

  5. Good episode. Though I barely played Baldur’s Gate, I spent many many hours on it’s sequel. This game series is still the standard to which I compare other RPG video games.

  6. Thank you for the kind words, folks — especially those of you who brought up Kat’s podcasts! I love that Retronauts exists and has a community who gets so excited about old-games gab.

  7. Excellent episode! I only played the original game for all of a couple of hours, but it made me laugh when Bob mentioned the house of spiders, as that’s my single strongest memory of my short playthrough :D

    Jason was excellent – talked really eloquently and passionately about the subject, made it such a good listen.

  8. Whenever Retronauts has an episode devoted to a game I’ve never played (and there have been quite a few) they always do a great job of explaining not only the nuts and bolts of the game, but also its cultural context and influence on later games. Rather than tune out or skip these, I find them all to be great learning experiences. Keep bringing back guests from the old 1UP days, too. I’m sure it isn’t easy, but it makes a great show.

    Thanks for all the hard work.

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