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Baldur's Gate and Baldur's Gate II remain cult classics not only among D&D fans, but cRPG gamers in general. With countless hours of gameplay, captivating stories, colorful characters, and many memorable locations they're one of the most intense and extensive role-playing experiences you can get while sitting in front of your PC. But to say that they didn't age at all might be a bit of a stretch. That's why some people would go a great distance modding and upgrading both those titles to combine them into one, seamless, visually updated game--an enhanced edition, if you will.

We're well aware of a commercial project aiming to achieve that goal. Originally, actually, that was scheduled to release today. That didn't happen, unfortunately, but that does give us a great reason to tell you how to make your own enhanced edition of Baldur's Gate. It's very nearly hassle-free and (especially with the sale going on) it won't cost you much at all. There's one catch, though: you need copies of both Baldur's Gate and Baldur's Gate 2 in order to enhance your game. Let's see how! One of our users, GoJays2025, committed his time to write a comprehensive guide on the topic. We know not all of you dare to venture into our forums, so we thought that sharing this guide here, might be a good idea--even more so during our Diamonds of D&D where you can get both Baldur's Gate games for as little as $7!

So, are you ready to enhance your GOG.com edition of Baldur's Gate saga and play both games as one, seamless adventure with the visually superior BG2 version of the engine and its updated mechanics, and with high-res graphics better suited for your modern wide-screen display? Here's how you do it, according to GoJays2025!

1. Fully install Baldur's Gate: The Original Saga
2. Fully install Baldur's Gate II Complete.
3. Download Baldur's Gate II Fixpack (Download links are on the left side) and extract it to your Baldur's Gate II directory.
4. Run the newly extracted setup-bg2fixpack.exe (if not automatically started).
5. It is safe to select yes for all the optional fixes, but if you want to learn about each in detail, consult the readme file that comes with the fixpack.
6. Download BGT-WeiDU and extract it in your Baldur's Gate II directory.
7. Run the newly extracted Setup-BGT.exe and follow the instructions. You may need to run it in administrative mode in Windows Vista/7.
8. Enter Baldur's Gate I's directory when asked (if not already provided)
9. Wait for BGT-WeiDU to finish installing.
10. OPTIONAL: Download and install Baldur's Gate 1 Unfinished Business as well as BG 2 Unfinished Business. These mods restore things that were previously cut from the released product, so while you don't need them, and they do add new content, they're pretty nice to have, especially if this is not your first time.
11. OPTIONAL: Download and install any user-created material (banter packs, expansion mods, new NPCs, etc.)
12. Go to your Baldur's Gate II directory, then find and run the file Setup-BGTMusic.exe and select 'Hybrid Baldur’s Gate/Shadows of Amn/Throne of Bhaal music'. This makes it possible to hear the original Baldur's Gate music when playing Baldur's Gate I.
13. OPTIONAL: (for more experienced users) Download Baldur's Gate II Tweak Pack (if this link doesn't work, please try the emergency mirror site) and apply it in the same way as the fixpack. Consult the readme file for details of each tweak - too many to list here. If you don't know what a tweak does even after consulting the readme, just skip it.
14. OPTIONAL: Download and install the Bigger Fonts for BGII mod if you plan to play in really high-res and don't want to strain your eyes reading tiny text.
15. Download the widescreen mod and apply it in the same manner as the fixpack. This makes it possible to play the game in high resolutions and in widescreen format.
16. Remove the Baldur's Gate I installation if you wish - it's done its job!

Now you should be able to play the game all the way from Baldur's Gate I to the end of Throne of Bhaal in one continuous game! Enjoy!

[i]Note: If you're on Windows 7 you might want to install the games in a directory other than C:Program Files or C:Program Files (x86) to avoid potential problems. C:Games should work.

The original forum thread, that also includes some other installation options, can be found here:
Baldur's Gate saga essential mods by GoJays2025[/i]
low rated
I refuse to download mods for any game, but it sounds like a nice time filler for those waiting on the EE. Since i have this though, http://www.impulsedriven.com/dndmaster , I don't need GOG's. Don't even need the CD after installation unless you wanna give it your friends.

Why all the hate though on EE? Reminds me of those CS 1.6 vs CS:S wars...
Post edited October 17, 2012 by Wiggles586
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Wiggles586: Why all the hate though on EE? Reminds me of those CS 1.6 vs CS:S wars...
For me, it's because it's a half-hearted re-release of a 15 year old game. It's literally the same game, with a few things bolted on. Why not update the graphics? Why not add full voice acting? Why not create a more in depth character creation tool? There was so much potential for a Baldur's Gate remake, but they just said "fuck it, Baldur's Gate fans will buy whatever we do as long as we slap the name on". Oh yeah, three painfully generic looking characters? Two new quests? That sounds totally worth 20 pounds!
Post edited November 14, 2012 by woodaba
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woodaba: For me, it's because it's a half-hearted re-release of a 15 year old game.
My understanding from them is that they were prevented from changing anything in the original. They can add, they can't alter. Bound like that, there's not much you can do. Of course, this then leads to why do it at all then if you're so constrained.

Even though they have some of the original devs on the project, I can't help but fear it's just an attempt to cash in on what is clearly still loved after all this time. Personally, the mods that exist seem better able to improve one's experience than EE will.
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BlueMooner: Even though they have some of the original devs on the project, I can't help but fear it's just an attempt to cash in on what is clearly still loved after all this time.
They made it clear that they want to use the enhanced editions as a stepping stone towards BG3, so I don't think it's just an attempt to cash in.
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woodaba: For me, it's because it's a half-hearted re-release of a 15 year old game.
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BlueMooner: My understanding from them is that they were prevented from changing anything in the original. They can add, they can't alter. Bound like that, there's not much you can do.
Who was prevented by whom?
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ET3D: They made it clear that they want to use the enhanced editions as a stepping stone towards BG3, so I don't think it's just an attempt to cash in.
True, I'd forgotten that. Still, BG3 isn't a certainty; they have to profit enough from their updates to make it viable.

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Starmaker: Who was prevented by whom?
I'm not certain of the players, but I believe that Overhaul was prevented by Atari. Overhaul, a division of Beamdog, is making EE. Atari is a division of Hasbro, which also owns WOTC, and I believe that WOTC has the rights to D&D and Forgotten Realms material while Atari has the rights to the original BG games. So I think the contract that binds Overhaul is with Atari.

http://forum.baldursgate.com/discussion/1588/bgee-please-read-list-of-things-that-cant-be-done

"
2. Contractual limitations.

Beamdog's contract is for BG:EE and BG2:EE only.
No contract exists for a remake of Icewind Dale, Icewind Dale II or Planescape: Torment as of now. Therefore, it vicariously ensues that the devs have no access to any resources from those titles, including portraits, animations, spells, and monsters. Modders may be able to port those contents to BG:EE once the game is released, but the devs are legally bound to work with the Baldur's Gate saga resources alone.

The contract prevents Beamdog / Overhaul to alter the original game contents heavy handedly.

This is what Trent Oster had to say about it on the official Beamdog forum:

[i]"1. Altering the dialog of the old joinable characters

-We can't do this

2. Altering the dialog of encounterable npc's in the campaign, including minor ones

-small scale text only changes are possible.

3. Adding new encounters to the old maps

-possible

4. Relocating encounters on the old maps

-possible, but at risk of introducing bugs

5. Retuning difficulty of old encounters, at the level of content rather than engine

-possible, again content tweaking risks adding bugs.

6. Adding/removing/moving gear in old encounters/npcs/containers.

-Again, possible, but adding risks adding bugs.

Our stance is to try and avoid too much meddling in the original content and focus our efforts on the new content."
[/i]

Beamdog / Overhaul also face contractual limitations regarding the addition of new content to the existing games. They can build new content as "expansions", but they cannot add to the core content in the main title. This limitation is due to the contracts for the original source content and limit the devs from adding new conversation for existing characters to the main game. Hence, adding banters, inerjections and romances to the original cast of characters is unfortunately not feasible. They will interact with new NPCs and react to new situations and areas, but that's about it.
"
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ET3D: They made it clear that they want to use the enhanced editions as a stepping stone towards BG3, so I don't think it's just an attempt to cash in.
Man, Overhaul devs just spew random nonsense non-stop on Twitter and their forums. They've also mentions that they have a "good chance" of remaking both Icewind Dale games and Planescape Torment if this does well, and the hope that they get to do Planescape Torment 2 keeping being tossed around. "But only if you buy this remake so be sure to pick it up!"

It's either extreme nativity or blatant marketing, and I really lean towards the latter. If it's the former, they're nuts. Yeah, you'll have time to remake all that shit and develop awesome new entries when you've taken months to bolt on an arena mode, three companions and a fix patch to just one of them.

Ugh, everything about this remake ticks me off. I hope it's good and changes my mind when it finally comes out, but I'm about as skeptical as I could possibly be.
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PenutBrittle: It's either extreme nativity or blatant marketing, and I really lean towards the latter. If it's the former, they're nuts. Yeah, you'll have time to remake all that shit and develop awesome new entries when you've taken months to bolt on an arena mode, three companions and a fix patch to just one of them.
I doubt anyone is creating a remake only to make money. Especially something like this, where it's pretty much out of their control, they can't enhance it or anything. I'm sure some of it is love for the games, and some is wanting to use it as a stepping stone for something else. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure they also want to make money. It's just that nobody in their right mind would try to make money off doing a boring resurrection job on a game they don't care about.

It's also not naive. It may be optimistic, but you must have some optimism to get into such a project. What they say is realistic enough. If BG EE is successful, there's a good chance that they'll be able to get a license to remake the other games. If it's very successful, they might have enough money for their own game.

Regarding the speed, I imagine that once they're done with BG EE they'll have enough experience with the engine and with porting to mobile to make conversion of other games easier.
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woodaba: it's a half-hearted re-release of a 15 year old game. It's literally the same game, with a few things bolted on.
Have you forgotten where you are?

Anyway, the characters in BG1 (and to a lesser degree BG2) were "painfully generic looking". Seriously, it's just like someone got some stock photos off Google Images and drew over them. They hold enormous nostalgic appeal for me, but they could be from any "standard fantasy setting" game ever.
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woodaba: it's a half-hearted re-release of a 15 year old game. It's literally the same game, with a few things bolted on.
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Export: Have you forgotten where you are?
Exactly. GOG is a library of old games, cheap. I can fork out 20 pounds for a glorified re-release, with a couple new characters that don't look interesting in the slightest manner, with a new (ugh)arena quest, OR, I could spend a fraction of that price and get a load of extras I actually do care about for my trouble.

See the problem?
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woodaba: See the problem?
I don't see the problem, really. It's just bonus content for 10 bucks. Those who think it's worth their time/money will buy it, those who don't, won't.

There's less than two weeks left to release now, and we'll see then if the wait was worth it. I've already bought the game and I'm pretty optimistic.
BGEE trailer: http://youtu.be/86NLGVQ6Iaw

Is there any point to getting BGEE instead of BG1+2 on GOG and modding?
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oasis789: BGEE trailer: http://youtu.be/86NLGVQ6Iaw

Is there any point to getting BGEE instead of BG1+2 on GOG and modding?
Not really. I'm cynical of the move to do this and as others have pointed out - its pretty much a quick cash grab for what amounts to a port to tablets/ipad (the UI leans toward touchscreens heavily), plus small amounts of additional content, + existing mod's incorporated into their version
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oasis789: BGEE trailer: http://youtu.be/86NLGVQ6Iaw

Is there any point to getting BGEE instead of BG1+2 on GOG and modding?
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nijuu: Not really. I'm cynical of the move to do this and as others have pointed out - its pretty much a quick cash grab for what amounts to a port to tablets/ipad (the UI leans toward touchscreens heavily), plus small amounts of additional content, + existing mod's incorporated into their version
That's good to know! I'll wait and see if Beamdog eventually makes BGEE a worthwhile purchase
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oasis789: Is there any point to getting BGEE instead of BG1+2 on GOG and modding?
You get 3 fleshed-out NPCs (ala BG2) accompanied by several new quests and areas, and a 6 hour long adventure that takes place in 15+ areas. It's basically like an expansion.

That said, if you haven't yet played the originals, I'd lean towards suggesting playing them first and then consider BGEE if you feel like going for more playthroughs.

One additional thing to consider is that while BG1+BG2 already has a large amount of fan-made mods, the enhanced editions will feature improved mod support, so chances are in the future we will see mods being made primarily for BGEE and BG2EE.