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Returning to BG 1&2 after several years - what's new and what's to avoid


Jenda

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Hello. First of all, I apologize for asking something that is most definitely found around here somewhere (or everywhere). I recently decided I would play Baldur's Gate 1 & 2 (& expansions) again, but before I start, I'd like to know what updates, fixes and mods I should install. However, after several hours of searching, I found out that there are so many different options (and opinions) that I simply got lost among them all.

 

Since I will be showing the game to my wife, who loves the modern day RPGs, such as Dragon Age and The Witcher (and there aren't any good ones around we could play now), I want it to look as good as possible and be relatively bug-free. If the usability/gameplay is improved in any way, that would be great too. I was originally going to use the widescreen mod and official patches only, but seeing just how many options there are, I'd like to ask for recommendations, what other mods/updates and fixes are must-haves.

 

- I will be using Windows 7, 64 bit - should I use a virtual machine, compatibility mode, or should the games run fine on W7?

- I read about a mod that allows BG1&TotSC to be played on the BG2 engine (was it called Tutu?) - should I use this? (pros/cons?)

- I don't want any extra content or character alterations unless they cover gaping holes in the original game (convince me :))

- Are there any other mods like the widescreen mod to improve graphics? (I read somewhere about using effects from Icewind Dale, but don't know if this is a good idea or an improvement at all)

- Any other tips?

 

Thanks for any suggestions apart from GFGI :D

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- I will be using Windows 7, 64 bit - should I use a virtual machine, compatibility mode, or should the games run fine on W7?
Use the default old game approach in Windows 7: Install it with the disabled the UAC & PCA, install the game to anywhere else than the "Default" install folder... so as long as it's not in Program Files sub-folder(on English OS), you should be fine. Read the answer #2 here to know more. -gives you the good old Windows XP 32-bit experience, just with more power over the files(faster loading times etc).

 

- I read about a mod that allows BG1&TotSC to be played on the BG2 engine (was it called Tutu?) - should I use this? (pros/cons?)
Tutu Cons: It's not BGT(-WeiDU), use BGT-WeiDU. :)

Well, actually there's a few BG1 in BGII conversion mods.

The BG1Tutu is the earliest, most BG1 like conversion, but it needs to be uninstalled to play the BGII's content and so the mods ... and there's not what so ever continuity between the usual BG1 - BGII-SoA, except the characters class and stats, if even those...

The EasyTutu is the evolved version, it makes a new game folder from the BG1 & BG2 mix, it's fine to play the BG1 in it, but you need to also have the BGII install to play the BGII's content and the character import export is a bit tricky if you have more than guest mods(kits etc character changing mods), and the EasyTutu is only for English language.

The BGT(-Weidu) is the evolved version of the original BGT, which was a total conversion mod that brought the BG1's content directly to the BGII, meaning that you can start from Candle Keep and continue your story all the way up to the Throne of Bhaal in one swoop go, it has several language supports. And the game files stay the same, so the character import export is more than easy within the same install and you don't actually be doing that cause the game just continues with a small plot that takes you through the transition. The (-WeiDU) annex just makes the mod just more convenient as you can install about 300+ other mods to it if you use a proper install order. The few Cons it has are that you need both of the official additions(TotSC & BGII - ToB) and patched to the latest official patches, the Tutu'es can be installed without those.

You should base your mod install order to one of the community based 'defaults'. BG1Tutu/EasyTutu(the second post), BGT/BWP(the -pdf files) with Auto-setup/install. The link to both BG1Tutu and the EasyTutu...

 

- Are there any other mods like the widescreen mod to improve graphics?
Not really, but you can replace graphics with other 'better' once. 1PP is really the only exclusively graphical alteration mod, then there's others that carry components that do the same...
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Sorry for the delay - been busy and didn't check back here for some time. Thank you for the elaborate answer, Jarno Mikkola! I will be sure to use WeiDU, then. Looks like a great deal of work has been put in - can't wait to try this out (hopefully this summer).

 

I think I'll pass on 1pp for now, but I'll keep looking.

 

J.

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Actually, still deciding bitween BGT-WeiDU and BWS ;)
What's there to decide ?

The BGT(-weidu) is included in the BWS, kinda, you can go without it too, but it's included in most install. See it's a setup program that downloads BGT, extracts it and then installs it with a flurry of other mods.

Just use the BWSbeta nowadays.

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