Baldur’s Gate 3: How Would The Dark Urge Change the Game as a Companion?

The Dark Urge is one of the game’s Origin characters, along with pretty much every other recruitable companion. Most people, at least on a first playthrough, prefer to build their own character, commonly referred to as Tav.

But while you can be Tav and still meet Shadowheart, Gale, and the rest later on, you won’t meet the Dark Urge. You can technically encounter him in a small way in Act 3, but he’s not a part of the story.

You can play as a good person even as the Dark Urge, but you will feel compelled by the urge nonetheless. The character gets unique cutscenes and interactions, some of which are triggered by you making deliberate choices, and some which happen automatically just by being a big evil Dragonborn guy.

He is a fascinating part of Baldur’s Gate 3, but a lot of players aren’t ever going to know that. Even if they play it over two, three more times, people are far more likely to dip into a new class or choose their favourite Origin character to ship them with their second favourite (Shadlach here we come) than they are to play as a dragonborn they’ve never heard of whose purpose isn’t fully explained.

There’s only one companion who really feels ‘evil’ in that game, Minthara. You just have to meet Shadowheart by walking forward ten yards, and then just around the corner you see Gale’s arm sticking out of a portal.

You don’t have to work to get them. Fun fact: as the Dark Urge, one of the options is to tear Gale’s arm off, trapping him in the portal forever.

The darkest companion you get is probably Astarion, as a vampire who has lured hundreds to their doom. Of course, Astarion repents and wants revenge on the man who forced him into this life, but he remains a morally grey character who approves of cold behaviour more often than Shadowheart or Gale.

Lae’zel too will approve of a cutthroat attitude, but she remains driven by a stern moral compass. Astarion knows he is mischievous and Machiavellian, while Lae’zel believes herself to be good, even if this goodness requires brutality.

The Dark Urge is very different. He has compulsions that make him do terrible things, whether he wants to or not.

Tearing off Gale’s arm is the result of choosing ‘fantasise about ripping the arm off’, and results in him actually doing the thing because if he fantasises about bloodlust, he is powerless to resist it. Wouldn’t that be a fascinating companion to have to deal with?

As the Dark Urge yourself, you have some agency over what you say and do. Some people choose the ‘fantasise’ option to see what happens, then save scum when they realise they stopped themselves from recruiting Gale, but you do have the option not to do it at all.

But what would happen if you didn’t have control? Taking the Dark Urge anywhere would be dangerous business.

He could leap from the background role companions usually have in negotiations, interrupting your conversations with carnage. Having someone unpredictable like the Dark Urge adds a new flavour to events, and while an important part of Baldur’s Gate 3 is telling the story your way, it would add even more depth and replayability to the story if the Dark Urge had a chance to burst forward and wreck everything.

These ideas are already in the game, and while I’m sure it would require a lot of work to get him into a companion mould, the fact that they exist suggests there’s a chance. With Baldur’s Gate 3 a huge success and expansions on the way, it’s possible a recruitable Dark Urge could come in the future.

I’d be more likely to explore Dark Urge this way rather than playing as him myself. We don’t have a lot of evil companions in these sorts of games.

You get the Astarion and Lae’zel shades of ‘I like when you say mean jokes’, but nothing like the Dark Urge. Maybe it’s a dark urge of my own, but I’d love to see how Baldur’s Gate 3 looks with him by your side.

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