Some of the best lines of dialogue in Baldur’s Gate 3 aren’t spoken by humanoids. With the right powers, you can make furred, feathered friends.
Baldur’s Gate 3 understands what players really want out of a game of D&D. To talk to anything and everything that moves. And with no shortage of scrolls of Speak With Animals, potions of Speak With Animals, and classes/party members that have access to Speak With Animals the game wants you to walk with the animals and talk with the animals.
Especially since when you use the ability, you can carry out all kinds of Speak With Animals Shenanigans. Wolves, Worgs, Rats, Spiders, Owlbears–these and more have interesting secrets for you. Which animals are worth speaking to? Well the answer is all of them, but if you want to really push the game in interesting directions, make sure to speak to these ones.
Rats In The Camp
Have you noticed the rats that run around in the background of Baldur’s Gate 3? These are the perfect example of how much detail the developers have put in the game. You might think they’re just there for color, but you can talk to the rats. And when you encounter the Tieflings and Druid camp, make sure to talk to them before and after you make some key decisions in the camp. They have some keen opinions on which side you should take, and some interesting reactions to whatever you decide.
Scratch the Dog
Scratch the Dog is an extremely good boy. He’s also one of the few pettable animals in the game. If you have a high enough animal handling and access to Speak with Animals, you can recruit him to your party and he’ll wait back at your camp. There you can talk to this good buddy and find out what he thinks about your adventures. Of course, when you meet him, there’s a little bit of tragedy–this poor dog has been through a lot, but he’s one of the warmest companions you can recruit. Easily my favorite, sorry Gayle.
The encounter with the Owlbear cub is how you know you’re really in a D&D campaign. You can recruit this little tyke to your party, but only after a great deal of violence. When you encounter the cub and its mother you have to get in a fight with the Owlbear mom, and if you kill it before hurting the cub, you get the typical DM guilt-trip making you realize that your actions have *consequences* and that you can’t just go around killing everything without thinking about its impact on the world.
Especially since the owlbear cub starts eating its dead mother. Later on, you’ll have a chance to rescue it from goblins, and then you can really get to know its personality. It might even bring you presents.
Speaking of presents, if you’re exploring in a swamp you might find a frog who’s a little confused about everything. If you talk to it, you’ll open up a sidequest that is otherwise inaccessible. You’ll be given an extra option when confronting a Hag further in to the game, and if you manage it, you’ll make a poor addled frog very happy.
Every animal in the goblin encampment is worth talking to. But if you talk to the right ones, you might be able to make it through this section without having to lift a finger. To a persuasive enough character, these giant spiders can be fast friends in a bid to escape the goblin’s fort.
Every single Bear in the game
You won’t encounter many bears in the course of Act 1, but without a doubt, every single bear you come across is worth talking to. From the sleeping bear who “guards” the lift in the druid camp. to a bear who’s not a bear–that last one especially opens up a whole new route to explore when dealing once again with the goblins.
Long story short, Speak With Animals really changes the game. It’s incredible what the writers had to consider when implementing this. It would’ve been easy to have the animals walk around with little to say, but these lines all have voice acting and often have meaningful impact on your game. I continue to be surprised at how much the game changes with the right dialogue choices. If you’ve been sleeping on Speak With Animals, it’s time to get out there and talk to everything.