Larian Studios' Director's Response to Leaked Insights on Baldur's Gate 3 from Microsoft

Following a substantial leak from Microsoft, the Director of Publishing at Larian Studios is defending the tech giant for underestimating the game, Baldur's Gate 3, before launch.

In the aftermath of a significant leakage of Microsoft's insights regarding Baldur's Gate 3 prior to its launch, the Director of Publishing from Larian Studios, the game developer, is advocating for the tech behemoth due to their undervalue of the game.

The Federal Trade Commission case against Microsoft has again placed Baldur's Gate 3 into the limelight. As leaked documents reveal, Microsoft had underestimated the game before its hugely successful launch.

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Furthermore, additional news reveals that Xbox had considered paying Larian an amount of $5 million to get Baldur's Gate 3 on Game Pass. An email leak also referred to the game as a 'Second-run Stadia PC RPG'.

Larian Studios

In the wake of these comments coming to light and the game developer and supporters rushing to the defense of Baldur's Gate 3, Michael Douse, Larian Studios' Director of Publishing has supported Microsoft, instead directing the attention to the mission of Larian.

Larian Developer Indicates That Xbox Wasn't the Sole Entity to Underestimate Baldur's Gate 3 Prior to Its Launch

The Director of Publishing at Larian Studios responded to an article that criticized Microsoft for misjudging the potential Baldur's Gate 3 held, by stating that Microsoft was not the only entity who falsely assumed the game's future.

Douse further elaborates that such a situation 'Comes with the [CRPG] genre,' similar to what Larian faced with low expectations for the game Divinity: Original Sin II. Despite the strong belief many players have for Baldur's Gate 3, the basis for this belief is the data and history of the team's prior games, indicating that they 'just had to take giant leaps in the dark' and hope for the best.

In their defence, so did everyone else. Comes with the genre, and the way we approach things, and the way we execute things. There just isn’t any existing data that could have told anyone how BG3 was going to perform. We just had to take giant spooky leaps.- Very AFK September 19, 2023

Since its full launch, Baldur’s Gate 3 has far exceeded the sales expectations and received unanimous praise from critics and gamers concurrently. This game continues to be a surprising frontrunner in early updates for the Game Of The Year, a notion that could not have been envisaged a few months ago.

The game, however, is currently unavailable for the Xbox due to the Series S's technical limitations and Microsoft's initial refusal to compromise on feature parity. Xbox has since amended their stance, with the game now expected to release on Series X|S later this year without parity.

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The palpable tension between Microsoft and Larian Studios is now gaining more attention following the leaks. The Stadia mention is particularly harsh given the fate of that platform. Notwithstanding, Larian Studios appears to be taking the criticism in stride.

In hindsight, the lack of a deal for Game Pass proved beneficial for the developers, as they would have lost a substantial amount of money by providing it to subscribers for just $5 million. Furthermore, Baldur's Gate 3 is an example of how underestimation can lead to surprising successes, especially for a traditionally niche genre.

Remember to check out the rest of our Baldur's Gate 3 coverage, offering the latest news, guides, and much more.