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Publisher: MacPlay    Genre: Adventure & RPG    Expansion For: Baldur's Gate II
Min OS X: 10.1.5    CPU: G3 @ 266 MHz    RAM: 256 MB

Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal
January 15, 2004 | Christopher Morin

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Few Mac games need as little introduction as Baldur's Gate: Throne of Bhaal (ToB). ToB was released for the PC to rave reviews about two and a half years ago. It was heralded as the crown jewel of RPG gaming royalty. Many Mac faithful despaired of ever seeing this expansion pack bought to their beloved platform. There has been a remnant, however. Those are those who never gave up the faith. These are those who could be seen prostrate on their prayer rugs; and facing Irvine, Calif., praying to the RPG gods for a Mac port. Those prayers were heard. Throne of Bhaal is here.

Created by the now defunct Black Isle Studios, ToB continues the saga that began back with Baldur’s Gate when your character learned that he was one of the progeny of the evil god Bhaal during his time on Toril during the Time of Troubles. Through the course of that first game, your character learned that the evil behind all that was happening to him was his evil half-brother Sarevok. In a final showdown, you defeated your brother and rid the city of Baldur’s Gate of a great evil.

Baldur’s Gate II: Shadows of Amn continued the story with the powerful mage Jon Irenicus. BG2 was a vast game of huge chapters and more than 100 hours of game play. The game also gave your characters opportunities to test their mettle against dragons and other powerful opponents. BG2 brought you inexorably closer to the final confrontation with your destiny.

The ToB expansion pack is the final culmination of your character’s quest to meet that destiny. Will he replace the dead god as the new god of murder? ToB caused many to seriously contemplate a week’s vacation to find out. In the meantime, we Mac gamers were left our BG2 characters all dressed up and no place to go as our Windows friends fulfilled their destinies.

The game begins with your character leaving the protection of the elves and encountering a half-sister, another Bhaalspawn, in a creepy forest. You then find yourself in another plane of existence where more of your destiny is revealed by a couple of characters, one of whom is your long lost half-brother Sarevok. Yes, you thought you skewered him two games ago. At this point you can choose to bring back other NPCs from BG2 to round out your party. If you are a little light in the fighter category, bringing Sarevok back to life may be worth the cost – a part of your soul. Sarevok sets you on your first mission to the city of Saradush in the kingdom of Tethyr, far to the south of Amn. The city is under siege. The military leader of the city is barricaded inside his fortress. It is revealed to you he is Bhaalspawn just like you. It also seems like you are now wearing a Scarlet Letter announcing to all around that you are also a child of the god of murder. Thus begins the final chapter of one of the greatest RPG games to date.


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