Baldur's Gate 3 devs reiterate changes made to Gale were the result of a bug fix after confusion online

Baldur's Gate 3 Gale and a bard
(Image credit: Larian Studios)

Larian Studios has provided clarity on Baldur's Gate 3 Hotfix 17 following some player confusion about the intentions of Gale's bug fix. 

On Monday (January 15) the turn-based role-playing game received another hotfix which aimed to improve things like performance and address several bugs. Another issue that was addressed pertained to the character Gale, as players found that he could leave your party for good if you failed to offer him any magical items to consume during conversations. 

Larian resolved the issue and wrote in the patch notes that the wizard should no longer permanently leave the party if you don't offer him any magic items – "unless you're abundantly clear that you don't plan on ever doing so."

However, following the release of the hotfix, some players online began discussing the change and believed that Gale's personality had been altered in the game's script after the studio wrote a joke in the patch notes.

"Poor Gale - we know your pain, sometimes it’s easy to read something into a situation that wasn’t there," the patch notes read. "We’ve sat him down and explained that if someone doesn’t offer him a shoe to eat every time, that doesn’t mean they never will. You’ll find him more likely to stick around now."

One Twitter / X user wrote: "I really dislike the decision to make Gale more likely to stay even if you don't give him an item. It feels incredibly out of character. I feel like you guys try too hard to make everyone happy and take away integral parts of the story to do it."

Another said: "I know you guys just want to make everyone happy, but you have to stop taking away character's backbones/personality because some people complained. You need to focus on actual bug fixes instead of this pandering that's going to turn beloved characters into husks."

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Now, Larian has updated the patch notes for Hotfix 17 and clarified that the change is purely a technical bug fix, not a character rewrite. If you check out the new wording, the studio has included an in-depth explanation of what exactly has been addressed for Gale, and it's only a temporary bug fix.

"This is a temporary bug fix that aims to avoid Gale immediately leaving the party when players are unable to hand over an item," it reads. "In Hotfix 16, we began the process of updating a player’s ability to access certain quest-related items, even if they were in the camp chest, or in the inventory of a companion waiting at camp.

"However, the UI through which items can be donated to Gale has not yet been updated, which meant that the dialogue could be triggered if the items were available elsewhere, but would not show in the UI to be donated. 

"This risked placing players in a situation where Gale expected an item from them, and they were unable to provide one."

Larian added that with this initial fix, closing the UI or using any line other than "I’m not giving you anything. Not now, not ever” will prevent Gale from immediately abandoning your party until the UI logic has been updated. But if players want to get rid of him and don't have any magic items to offer, they only have to select the aforementioned line, which will still cause him to leave your party.

Director of publishing at Larian Studios, Michael Douse, took to Twitter / X to share the change, but did note that the team will keep up with its funny quips in the patch notes despite the recent misunderstanding: "Don’t worry, we won’t stop doing our silly little jokes [though]."

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