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Astarion isn’t a fan of acts of kindness that show vulnerability, like warning murder victims they’ll be killed in cold blood, or helping the Gnomes escape the tyranny of Nere. But now, Baldur’s Gate 3 players have finally figured out why Astarion is the way he is.

Since I started playing Baldur’s Gate 3, I thought Astarion was an impish yet charming companion who’s simply overjoyed with his newfound freedom. Besides all that, it was clear he saw kindness as weakness, and would only help out for personal gain. But when a player explained on the Baldur’s Gate 3 subreddit on March 27 that Astarion is like this because he’s been enslaved and tortured, and not a single person tried to help him for 200 years, my entire perception changed. 

“Then the very same day you finally break free, you meet a person who will go out of their ways to help others, who doesn’t ask anything in exchange, who gets themselves in harm’s way just to protect others because that’s what a good person does, just imagine that, it must feel like destiny is slapping you in the face. Here is the person you so badly needed, (in what he thinks) after you needed them,” the post reads. 

So, it’s no wonder Astarion is bitter. He’s been hurt and tortured too many times to believe in goodness of heart, and it seems he’s reached a point in life where he thinks if he didn’t get any help, why should anyone else? Besides all that, I’ll add that being crude is simply one of his coping mechanisms to avoid getting hurt again. If you don’t help anyone and you don’t open up, you can’t get hurt, right? 

In the end, Astarion grows so much as a character, and you see him approving of you helping children and those in need. He’ll still be his old self—mischievous and witty—but he emerges a better person at the end (if you don’t let him Ascend).

Honestly, I could write hundred-page long essays on Astarion’s character, but it all boils down to one thought—Larian Studios did an amazing job developing him. Astarion, together with other BG3 companions, has so many layers and so much depth. If you want to find out more about his story, I recommend romancing him or playing as the origin character.


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