The voice of Baldur’s Gate 3’s Astarion was asked to tone down the horny for his final romance scene: ‘ONLY SLIGHTLY, NEIL’

A recent datamine of Baldur’s Gate 3‘s absurdly huge wealth of voice lines continues to deliver. Not just in helping us uncover dark, dark futures regarding Scratch—it’s also given us a peek behind the curtain at the game’s development.

As spotted by Team_Purple on the Baldur’s Gate 3 subreddit (thanks Gamesradar), Astarion’s final romance scene has a hilarious dev note—presumably from a writer who knows the fabulous stylings of Neil Newbon a little too well.

Found a hilarious devnote for Astarion’s final romance scene from r/BaldursGate3

“Cinematic context: Turning to the player, taking their hands in his for a moment,” begins the note, followed by: “NodeContext: Slightly horny. (ONLY SLIGHTLY, NEIL)”. There’s something delightful about the unhinged all-caps breaking through the normal narrative efficiency of a note like this. 

Presumably, Newbon had turned on the smoulder a little too much, too often. Everything’s relative though, and considering the high-end of the spawn’s sensuality is a thoroughly disarming scene where he promises to “Eat you right up”, I’m not surprised that Astarion’s ‘slightly horny’ is every other character’s ‘majorly’. 

Granted, half of the fun about the Sword Coast’s most dunkable vampire dandy comes from how you can’t tell if he wants to flirt with you or eat you alive, half the time. Unless you’ve been under a rock (or just rolled a nat 1 on a Perception check), the fan community’s been… receptive to his charms, too.

Larian Studios itself capitalised on this before the game’s launch with an April Fool’s joke about Astarion releasing ‘OnlyFangs’, “Your number one source for exclusive (unrated) vampire spawn content.”

I spoke to Newbon back in August, and he’s very much all about the character’s more sensual side (and the fan response it’s spawned). “So for me, I think it’s a glorious compliment … as long as you have a reaction, I’m cool with it … Neil gets to be very chuffed that a lot of people were entertained. Astarion gets the ego trip of being thirsted after.”

The dev note itself is likely born of the same playfulness that led to Amelia Tyler—the game’s narrator—chiding players in a series of outtakes in July: “If you fancy Astarion, you might want to consider therapy. ‘He’s so damaged, I must have him!’ Enjoy the fantasy, and then call a therapist. It’s a two-step thing, and it’s very important you do both.” At this point, I’m convinced the punishment involved in Astarion’s allure is just part of the fun.

PCGamer.com