Well, the wait was definitely worth it for the fans. Larian Studios surprised everyone by releasing Baldur’s Gate 3 four weeks earlier than the announced schedule. The game’s release has been a massive success, breaking concurrent player records on Steam and attracting a large number of viewers on Twitch.
In a recent interview with Bloomberg, Swen Vincke, the CEO of Larian Studios and director of Baldur’s Gate 3, discussed the game’s tremendous achievements and the future of the studio.
The Scale of Baldur’s Gate 3 is Synonymous With Its Success: Both are Huge
There is little ordinary about Baldur’s Gate 3. The game boasts an unprecedented scope with a whopping 174 hours of cut scenes and an astounding 17,000 possible ending variations, making it a massive 200+ hour game that is definitely great value for money at 50 bucks. Especially in times when the gaming industry is headed towards a new standard; a $60 price tag for AAA flagship games.
What makes Larian Studios stand out is its CEO, Swen Vincke. Unlike most gaming CEOs, Vincke is a hardcore gamer and fan favorite. He actively engages with the gaming community, hosting live streams dressed in a coat of platemail armor and starring in quirky, comedic videos. This hands-on approach has endeared him to players and sets Larian Studios apart from other companies.
And it clearly shows in Baldur’s Gate 3 how a close connection with the community has helped developers perfect the game. It has everything an RPG fan has ever wanted. The game has great detail, and no wonder why it surpassed 472K concurrent players on Steam and over 481K viewers on Twitch in less than 24 hours of its release on PC.
Baldur’s Gate 3 is a game centered around player choices, offering multiple potential outcomes for almost every storyline. With such narrative variability, each player’s experience will be unique, providing an engaging and immersive journey. Vincke believes this approach boosts word-of-mouth marketing by creating viral moments that fans are eager to share.
Vincke also revealed that the stakes for Larian are unusually high with Baldur’s Gate 3. Since the release of their last title in 2017, the company has expanded significantly, growing from 140 to 450 employees across six countries. And, the success of Baldur’s Gate 3 is crucial for justifying this expansion, and the early indications are promising.
The Game Was Always a Success: At Least That’s What 2.5 Million Players Believed
To achieve the ambitious scope of the game, Larian Studios took an unusual route, releasing an early-access version in October 2020. More than 2.5 million players purchased the game in this unfinished state, ensuring the project’s financial viability and allowing for continuous development. The decision to involve players early on paid off, giving them a chance to experiment with characters and systems without spoiling the story.
Despite facing challenges like the pandemic and geopolitical events impacting development, Larian Studios remains dedicated to delivering an exceptional gaming experience. Even amid the recent announcement of a major rival RPG, Starfield, being released in the same week, Vincke decided to release the PC version of Baldur’s Gate 3 four weeks early.
Embracing the Underdog Spirit
While the excitement around Baldur’s Gate 3 continues to grow, Vincke, true to his nature, prefers to remain the underdog in the industry. With a focus on player satisfaction and a desire to explore new gaming projects, the future for Larian Studios looks bright, even as the CEO admits he doesn’t yet know what lies ahead.
What are your thoughts about Baldur’s Gate 3? Have you dived into the game yet, or are you planning to boot it up over the weekend? Or, are you one of the players who bought the game in early access? Let us know in the comments section below.