Baldur's Gate 3 decapitates lifeless bodies to prevent you from being able to converse with them
For years, Dungeon Masters in the realms have been combating necromancers, particularly due to their ability to converse with the deceased. Undoubtedl...
For years, Dungeon Masters in the realms have been combating necromancers, particularly due to their ability to converse with the deceased. Undoubtedly, it is taboo to actually bring someone back from the beyond just for a brief conversation, yet that doesn't deter the more chaotic D&D players from behaving in a completely goblin-like manner and resurrecting anyone they can. It is an annoyance for DMs to have to consider every deceased character with whom one can speak, but it is nearly impossible to properly implement this in a video game.
Hence, it occasionally happens that during a cheerful stroll through Baldur's Gate 3, you may come across some decapitated corpses, as the developers at Larian Studios probably did not intend for you to engage in conversation with them. In a recent interview with Todd Kenreck from Wizard of the Coast, the creative director of Baldur's Gate 3, Swen Vincke, discussed the challenges of ensuring that in-game options such as "Speak with Dead" were appropriately elaborated upon. In doing so, he revealed some techniques that were employed to make ambitious choices like these manageable for the team.
In order to ensure that players couldn't engage in conversation with decapitated corpses, Larian Studios employed a clever trick for the "Speak with Dead" spell. It is quite challenging to converse with someone who lacks a head. This allowed Larian to exert a bit more control over the players' actions, as they could simply decapitate anyone who might have had sensitive information hidden within their skull, which could potentially disrupt the game.
"Long ago, I learned that our initial games were highly ambitious, but we didn't quite manage to fulfill those ambitions within the game, as we didn't fully support the features," Vincke states.
From the feedback received for those games, I have learned that it is truly crucial to fully implement a feature when it is incorporated. This entails the ability to converse with animals, any animal at all. One can speak with the deceased, or well, the trick we employ is to communicate with any corpse that still retains its head. You will encounter numerous decapitated individuals in the game, but quite literally, that is how we have resolved it.
One can forgive Larian for decapitating a few individuals to alleviate the burden, especially considering the creativity of the Baldur's Gate 3 fan base. They continually come up with bizarre ways to circumvent content, whether it's Matt Mercer constructing a tower of crates to scale a fortress or planting 15,000 gold on a boss character to defeat them in a single blow later on. If Larian needs to put an end to some of these antics by severing a few heads, then I say: Get to work.