Although the most recent trailer for Baldur’s Gate 3 has revealed split-screen co-op, it has some key differences from online play to keep in mind.
Thanks to February 2023’s State of Play, Baldur‘s Gate 3 has finally shown, among other features and story details, its local, split-screen co-op. Developed by Larian Studios, the developer behind Divinity: Original Sin 2, Baldur’s Gate 3 is finally approaching its full release following a lengthy early access period, which limits players to the game’s first act. Much like DOS2 before it, the game will allow up to four players to band together as a party in cooperative play, with characters either being created from the ground up or chosen from select Origin characters with preset backstories.
As of the game’s most recent trailer, Baldur‘s Gate 3‘s full release date has been revealed, marking the end of its three-year-long early access when the game releases in August 2023. Shifting some attention away from the mind flayers that serve as one of the game’s central overarching threats, the trailer also puts focus on a new antagonist – General Ketheric Thorm, played by J.K. Simmons, as well as revealing the game’s split-screen local co-op, a feature brought over from Divinity. However, while having split-screen couch co-op in addition to online multiplayer is welcome, there are a few key differences between the two to keep in mind.
Baldur’s Gate 3’s Online Multiplayer & Couch Co-Op Have Key Differences
Although Baldur‘s Gate 3‘s couch co-op option is a great feature, it’s also somewhat more limiting than the game’s online multiplayer. Split-screen isn’t expected to be included until the full release of Baldur‘s Gate 3 and is also expected to be limited to two players, as opposed to the online multiplayer’s maximum of four. Of course, there’s also a slight out-of-game requirement, as split-screen co-op will also need multiple controllers connected to the same device to function. The split-screen nature of Baldur Gate 3′s couch co-op will also, inevitably, lead to some gameplay differences from online multiplayer, as the shared screen will stop players from hiding any information from each other.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Online Multiplayer On Consoles Will Require A Subscription
Playing the game on console will create another difference to consider as well, as PS5 will likely need an active PlayStation Plus membership to use the online multiplayer, whereas couch co-op will not. Fans of the original Baldur’s Gate games looking to play 3 with friends will therefore want to carefully consider their platform of choice for the game depending on which form of co-op they’re going for. Luckily, Baldur’s Gate 3 will also support cross-save between all platforms, making it easy to transfer progress, although the cost of multiple copies of the game would also be a consideration.
Following its long early access period, Baldur’s Gate 3 is shaping up to be another worthwhile RPG from Larian Studios, differentiating itself from DOS2 with the Baldur‘s Gate series’ Dungeons & Dragons mechanics. While there are some key differences between the game’s online multiplayer and couch co-op, both should serve as rewarding ways to experience Baldur’s Gate 3 with friends.
Source: Larian Studios/YouTube