My life is not my own anymore. When I close my eyes, I see dice rolls, and when I wake up in the morning, I can hear the faint sound of my ship powering up for lift off. After getting my hands on Starfield and Baldur's Gate 3 at the same time, I've taken it upon myself to dive into both and attempt to juggle the two massive, and very different, experiences simultaneously. Why on earth would I do this?
Well, it's partly because I've decided to satiate the side of my heart that has been yearning for more RPGs. But it's also down to the fact that I just couldn't bring myself to wait to play Baldur's Gate 3 or Starfield any longer. My excitement for two of the biggest new games of 2023 has only grown over the last few months, and it's been particularly hard holding out for the PS5 release of Larian's highly lauded role-playing adventure set in the D&D universe.
It might sound foolish or even illogical to try to dip in and out of both, but I'm actually having the time of my life. One minute I'm completely losing myself to the cast of characters and meaningful choices at the heart of Baldur's Gate 3, and the next I'm winding down with some exploration on some far flung planet in the cosmos of Starfield and making unexpected discoveries. I fully appreciate that I'm in the fortunate position to be able to straddle both. And while I wouldn't necessarily advise it if you're thinking of doing the same thing – especially if you have any semblance of a social life – it's been an absolute wild ride so far and I only hope I can keep it up.
Nothing can quite rival the joy of experiencing a new game for the first time that just clicks with you in every way. The magic of treading new paths, meeting new characters that you fall in love with, and journeying through quests and stories that surprise and delight you is unmatched. It's why I'm trying to soak up and make the most of every minute of my first run in Baldur's Gate 3. The RPG has everything I look for in a role-playing experience, with romances, engaging companions that give the world its beating heart, and choices that genuinely matter. I'm not too far into it by any stretch, but it's no exaggeration to say that this is the RPG I feel like I've been waiting for since I finished Dragon Age: Inquisition almost nine years ago.
On the flip side, as a fan of Skyrim and Oblivion, it's been so exciting stepping into something new from Bethesda, and better yet, something that's set in space, which has always been a personal obsession of mine. Starfield is very much giving me the chance to play out my own astronaut-shaped fantasy, with the added bonus of having new companions to meet, discoveries to make, traits that bring something different to my character, and opportunities to talk my way out of things with its persuasion system – something I'm also a fan of doing as a bard in Baldur's Gate 3. I've barely scratched the surface of Starfield, but I'm enjoying the contrast between the two big RPGs and how they offer me something different.
After a stint of turn-based battling, dice-rolling, woo-ing at the camp, and animal conversing in Baldur's Gate 3, I've taken to diving into Starfield to fight space pirates, hunt down bounties, build up a ship, or unwind with some planetary surveying. The latter aspect is likely not everyone's bag, but I find it so calming to wile away my time scanning resources, plants, and wildlife like some spacey researcher.
While I'm still enjoying the novelty of being able to play both games, it's certainly not without its challenges. Remembering the controls for each game as I switch between consoles takes a bit of getting used to, and it can sometimes feel quite chaotic to keep track of where I've left off in both adventures when I settle in for another session in either game. Plus, as such expansive experiences, I lose track of time… I honestly don't know who I am these days – a space-faring adventurer, a half-elf bard, or a writer sitting like a contented RPG-loving goblin in my pjs? Who can say anymore.
For now, I'm just relishing every new discovery, interaction, and storyline I come across, and getting entirely lost in the different fantasies. It feels like such a good time to be an RPG fan – particularly if either Baldur's Gate 3 or Starfield speak to you. And if both appeal, like they do for me, well, I hope your heart feels as full as mine. I don't know how long I'll keep this up for, but I'm just trying to enjoy it all as much as I possibly can, and see where both adventures take me.