Choice is a beautiful thing. It can lead you to riches. It can lead you to ruin. In Baldur’s Gate 3, it can also lead you to one of around 17,000 game endings. In a new interview with Fextralife, game writer Chrystal Ding claimed there were 17,000 variations of the game’s conclusion, which was later seemingly corroborated by the game’s director of publishing, Michael Douse.
That means for every single little choice you make in the game, you’re contributing to a slight change or tweak in the endgame – no pressure. Something that may seem inconsequential as you start your journey could eventually circle back around, leading to one of those many 17,000 ending variations.
Beyond being a fun system that allows players a freedom of choice, it also likely means no two games of Baldur’s Gate 3 will be the same. Your ending could be wildly different to that of your friends, which will certainly kickstart discussions about what’s ‘canon’ to the story or not.
Those who prefer a completionist run, where they can view every possible ending variation, will likely have trouble grasping this figure. There’ll likely be standard ‘good’ and ‘bad’ variations to those 17,000 endings, but it would fairly be impossible to see them all.
Baldur’s Gate 3 sounds like an absolutely massive game, and keen players will have to be okay with missing out on some slices of its content as choices lead them down alternate paths.
Per Larian Studios, the game will take around 75-100 hours to complete – but with around 174 hours of cinematics reportedly available, it’s unlikely players will see every eventuality and plot point during their time with the game. Much like its endings, gameplay in Baldur’s Gate 3 will be directly related to player choices, and how much time you’re willing to invest in exploring beyond the beaten track.
Baldur’s Gate 3 launches for PC on 3 August 2023, and on 6 September 2023 for PlayStation 5. An Xbox Series X/S version of the game is also on the way, but it remains undated.