volo in baldurs gate 3 offering his eye
Screenshot by GameSkinny

Is Baldur’s Gate 3 an Indie Game?

In terms of the textbook and community definitions of independent games, is Baldur's Gate 3 an indie game?

With Larian’s decision to develop and self-publish BG3 without an official publishing company, we’re left to wonder about the definition of indie games. The technicalities of the indie tag get even weirder when we consider that Dave the Diver isn’t an independent title. So is Baldur’s Gate 3 an indie game?

Recommended Videos

Does Baldur’s Gate 3 Fall Under the Indie Game Category?

best luminous armor shadowheart build in baldur's gate 3
Screenshot by GameSkinny

Technically, Baldur’s Gate 3 is an indie game. The textbook definition of indie games says that when the developer team imports all their artistic visions into a product without the profit-oriented decisions or influence of an official publishing company the game can be considered an indie game.

Larian, having developed and self-published Baldur’s Gate 3 without such influences, can technically call BG3 an indie game in isolation. This is a hilarious notion to think about when it comes to The Game Awards of 2024 where we could have had our favorite D&D CRPG along with Cocoon, Dave the Diver, Dredge, etc.

Interestingly, since Dave the Diver’s developers Mint Rocket are a small team within a much larger high-profit South Korean company called Nexon, Dave the Diver technically isn’t an independent game. It’s a wild world we live in where Baldur’s Gate 3 is, by definition, an indie game, and Dave the Diver isn’t.

Is Baldur’s Gate 3 an Indie Game By Community Standards?

firing off fire spells in baldurs gate 3
Screenshot by GameSkinny

That said, the tag “indie game” goes much deeper than just having an independent studio as its defining factor. In terms of the video game community standards, indie games are traditionally developed by a smaller team and generally on a lower budget. We’ve come to associate indie games with 2D and pixel art aesthetics to a degree and while they’re much broader than that, studio size and budget are community-accepted factors.

Following those definitions, Baldur’s Gate 3 can’t really be called an indie game by community standards having been developed by a massive high-budget company like Larian with several hundreds of employees. It’s also important to note that Larian has worked with publishers before and 30% of Larian is technically owned by Tencent. So while BG3 is an independently-developed masterpiece of impressive scale it’s much more of a AAA title than an indie one.

The community definition of indie games has shifted to smaller teams working with a tight and limited budget to produce awesome games at a lower price point. And while BG3 certainly delivers on the passion and artistic vision of indie games, it’s practically a competitor to Elden Ring, God of War, and other massive AAA titles.

So is Baldur’s Gate 3 an indie game? By textbook definition? Yes! By community standards? Not really. If you’re interested in more Baldur’s Gate 3 articles, check out 10 BG3 rules and mechanics that D&D 5e desperately needs.


GameSkinny is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more
related content
Read Article Top 32 Best Shiny Pokemon Designs, Ranked
Shiny Glimmora, Pyroar, and Kingdra during a picnic in Pokemon Violet
Read Article Fallout’s Great War Might Have Saved Humanity From Something Worse
Bomb dropping in Fallout 4
Read Article Fallout Trogs Were Born From a Common Housecleaning Product
Trog snarling in Fallout
Read Article Fallout 4’s Most Famous Theory Ruins the Story
Vault dweller standing next to dogmeat in Fallout 4
Read Article Best RPG Maker Horror Games, From Mad Father to Ib
Mad Father two zombie dolls attack Aya
Related Content
Read Article Top 32 Best Shiny Pokemon Designs, Ranked
Shiny Glimmora, Pyroar, and Kingdra during a picnic in Pokemon Violet
Read Article Fallout’s Great War Might Have Saved Humanity From Something Worse
Bomb dropping in Fallout 4
Read Article Fallout Trogs Were Born From a Common Housecleaning Product
Trog snarling in Fallout
Read Article Fallout 4’s Most Famous Theory Ruins the Story
Vault dweller standing next to dogmeat in Fallout 4
Read Article Best RPG Maker Horror Games, From Mad Father to Ib
Mad Father two zombie dolls attack Aya
Author
Gordan Perisic
From playing RPGs and dungeon mastering for his D&D group to reading novels and scribbling about his fantasy setting, Gordan is a full-time nerd and devoted writer for GameSkinny. He loves to overshare and discuss literature, music, animation, and trees with fellow geeks. Also, he may or may not cook too much food for his friends. Cholesterol is one hell of a drug.