Hotfix 17 for Baldur's Gate 3 has been rolled out across all platforms, addressing performance issues on the PS5, optimizing save game file sizes, and refining narrative flow. Following its recognition as the top-selling game on Steam in 2023 and earning the prestigious Game of the Year title at The Game Awards, Baldur's Gate 3 continues to evolve under Larian's dedicated development. Despite the acknowledged benefits derived from its three-year Early Access phase, the game's Act 2 and Act 3 have faced some post-launch challenges.
Larian's commitment to refining the game's technical aspects is evident through five major updates, with Patch 5 introducing the Epilogue to enhance the overall experience. However, persistent save game issues on Xbox have proven challenging, prompting Microsoft to release firmware updates, albeit with limited success for some players.
In the guise of Hotfix 17, the latest update for Baldur's Gate 3 primarily concentrates on addressing save games, crashes, and a peculiar issue with the companion character, Gale, in early Act 1. While Microsoft pledges to resolve the save game issue on January 16, the update delivers a more streamlined file size by enhancing compression and removing redundant data, such as summons, from save files.
A significant improvement pertains to Gale's behavior, notorious for seeking magical artifacts early in the game. Hotfix 17 allows players greater flexibility in managing this situation, ensuring Gale only departs if players explicitly convey their unwillingness to provide him with artifacts.
Overall, Hotfix 17 marks another step towards refining Baldur's Gate 3, underscoring Larian's ongoing commitment to supporting the game. Although no official announcements have been made regarding DLCs or expansion packs, the precedent set by the Divinity: Original Sin series hints at the possibility of a future Definitive Edition for Baldur's Gate 3.
Key Highlights from Baldur's Gate 3: Hotfix 17 Patch Notes:
PERFORMANCE AND CODE:
- Resolved visual artifacts on PS5 during scene transitions.
- Improved savegame compression and reduced file size.
- Addressed crashes related to character resource modifications by mods or cheat engines.
GAMEPLAY AND COMBAT:
- Fixed issues in Honour Mode with Cazador's aura.
- Corrected camera behavior during jumping or casting spells.
- Improved interaction with open doors and Thieves' Tools.
- Safeguard Shield's Saving Throw modifier accurately displayed on the Character Sheet.
FLOW AND SCRIPTING:
- Gale no longer permanently leaves the party if players choose not to offer him magic items, unless explicitly stated.
- Rectified character issues during the fight with Grym, preventing control after being killed.