Is Baldur’s Gate II Bullshit?

I finished Baldur’s Gate: Enhanced Edition about six weeks ago, give or take. This was cause for great celebration for a couple of reasons. First, the latter portions of the Siege of Dragonspear expansion were an absolute motherfucker, being comprised mainly of fights with ultra-powerful wizards, actual devils, and the like. The last boss fight hardly seemed fair, and I’m still not fully convinced it wasn’t a puzzle boss of some kind, but if there was a way to defeat it without actually fighting it, I didn’t find it. I ended up cranking the difficulty down to the lowest setting so I could stomp the dude and move on. It wasn’t my proudest moment, but I hardly cared by that point.

But, more importantly, this meant I could move on to Baldur’s Gate II: Enhanced Edition, of which I had heard nothing but awesome things. It has great characters and awesome battles and a fantastic story and on and on and on. So then, I get to firing it up for the first time, escape the opening dungeon (after getting my ass sort of handed to me, once or twice) and immediately get my ass handed to me repeatedly.

Every fight in this game is a colossal asshole. Most recently, I have stumbled into a side quest that features a fight against an opposing party in a sewer that I had to sneak around, as I simply cannot beat those jerks, capped off by a dungeon crawl featuring some sort of mega-lich (in fairness, this fight appears to be optional), mummies, and the promise of fighting a Beholder later (for those not familiar, a Beholder is a D&D monster that resembles a giant floating eye, with ten additional stalks sprouting out of it, each of which has another eye on top. All of those eyes have magical effects. They are not to be fucked with).

So I’m in this dungeon, and I’m starting to realize that fighting mummies isn’t so bad, but then, I run into a fight featuring three Gauths. Gauths are like Beholders, except smaller and not as tough, but since there’s three of them, it sure seems to me there’s a good chance I’d be better off fighting just one Beholder. And, since I don’t have access to the Haste spell at present, there’s nothing but time for these jerks to ruin my life before I can even close my front line into melee range.

This fight has broken me, and now I haven’t so much as touched the game for about three weeks. This game is bullshit. It’s become apparent that I will need to start all the way back at the beginning of the current chapter (the game is kind in that it permanently hangs onto a save file at the start of each chapter, for ease of backtracking), turn the difficulty down at least a setting, or both. Either is dispiriting enough on it’s own, but the prospect of doing both mostly just makes me sad. This game is bullshit. End communication.

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