Astarion’s Baldur’s Gate 3 Ending Altered Due to His Actor

Neil Newbon’s performance as Astarion in Baldur’s Gate 3 had a significant impact on the character’s ending scene. During the early access period, Newbon felt that Astarion’s ending, specifically his spawn ending, should have a more lighthearted tone as he is now free from his former master. Larian Studios and Newbon collaborated to reach a middle ground, resulting in the ending that was ultimately used in the final game.

The early access phase of Baldur’s Gate 3 lasted almost three years, allowing actors like Neil Newbon to portray their characters for an extended period across various updates and rewrites. Newbon played Astarion from the very first playable build of the game and continued to shoot scenes well after the game’s launch, contributing to the expansion of his character. Greg Lidstone, the director of animation at Larian Studios, revealed in an interview that Neil Newbon’s familiarity with the character of Astarion allowed him to influence the tone of Astarion’s final cutscene, which is the Origin scene if the player chooses to play as Astarion rather than having him as a companion.

Lidstone described Newbon’s input on the original scene and how he suggested a change to align with Astarion’s character. Newbon felt that Astarion’s challenge was not directly related to him being a vampire but rather that he was a spawn and not free. Consequently, the scene was reshot to convey a more positive tone, with Newbon even performing a dance towards Astarion’s prey in one take.

After balancing the tone in another take, the final scene in the game was achieved, which Lidstone considered to be one of the best in the game. The collaboration between Neil Newbon and the team at Larian Studios, including director of animation Greg Lidstone and former Larian writer Stephen Rooney, was instrumental in bringing the character of Astarion to life. Newbon’s portrayal of Astarion was initially viewed as a “risk” but has since proven to be successful and popular among players.

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