I thought about playing BG 1 and 2 but don't know if I should get the Enhanced Edition(s) on Steam or merge the two games from GoG. So ... dunno. Anyone in the mood to help me out a bit here? Do I get that right that merging the two GoG-Games gives me one big game in which I will just play the same character from the beginning to the end instead of having to create a new character and start all over again in BG 2? o_O Or is the map and the number of locations in the merged GoG-Version bigger than the ones I get with buying the Enhanced Edition(s)?
Nyeah. Would be nice if someone could help me out a bit here. Thanks ^^
My advice would be to get the two games from GOG, but before you play them in BGT (merging, as you put it), play them at least once vanilla style. That is the only way you will experience Baldur's Gate 1 as the designers intended. Be aware that playing the enhanced versions is a totally different experience than the originals; they have been arbitrarily changed in far too many ways, and both are still chock full of bugs.
If you decide that you do want to dive straight into 'merging', then you need to install BG1 and BG2, and do NOT patch, mod or otherwise alter the vanilla BG1 in any way. This is extremely important for the installation of BGT. You must also be very careful of installation order for BG2. Do not install any mods except for Ascension, Turnabout and BG2 Fixpack before BGT. So install in this order:
BG2 - Ascention
BG2 - Turnabout
BG2 - BG2Fixpack
BG2 - BGT
BG2 - any other mods.
Now to answer your other query: BGT's purpose is twofold. One is to allow you to play BG1 in the BG2 game engine -- be aware that this makes the game easier, and different than vanilla BG1 -- and two it seemlessly transitions the game from the end of BG1 into the start of BG2, taking your character and his/her stats, plus all of the NPCs who also appear in BG2 along with their BG1 stats. No starting again; no importing; everything is done as though the game just continues. The maps in each game are just the same. Not bigger, just different.