Box art - Baldur's Gate 3

Baldur’s Gate 3 Should I free the brain or kill the intellect devourer?

Baldur’s Gate 3 players have a big decision very early in the game. The next room from the chamber the character finds themselves after character creation and the opening cutscene has a gruesome scene. Here, players will meet an incapacitated man with an exposed brain. That’s gross enough, but the brain also talks. In fact, the talking brain asks the player for liberation before the forces attacking the Nautiloid return.

The brain holds a parasite called an Intellect Devourer. However, the brain’s swelling has caused it to get stuck, and it’s up to the player to decide whether to free the creature or set it free. This won’t be the only hard decision on the Nautiloid, unfortunately. Players will also have to determine whether or not they can save the woman locked in the Mind Flayer Pod.

Should I set the talking brain free or kill it in Baldur’s Gate 3?

Baldur's Gate 3 brain Intellect Devourer full form

When players enter the room containing the talking brain, they’ll hear it whispering to them. The creature is located on a platform that requires a short elevator ride to get to.

It’s wise to save the game before approaching the brain since this interaction requires several skill checks. To free the brain, players must select the following responses:

  1. “Who am I talking to – a man or a brain?”
  2. “I think you’re past the point of saving. Tell me what to do.”
  3. “[INVESTIGATION] Inspect the exposed brain.”

Players then get the choice between three options:

  • “[STRENGTH] Break the skull.”
  • “[DEXTERITY] Gently prise the brain from the skull.”
  • “[MEDICINE] Attempt a cerebral extraction, staying mindful of the swelling.”

If players pass the check, the brain is removed. They’ll then get the option to “cripple the strange creature, making it more subservient should it prove a threat.”

I’m not sure what the consequences of this option are as of writing. Presumably, if the player ever has to face off against the creature, this will make the battle easier.

Regardless, once the brain is extracted, it’ll grow legs and tendrils and become a party member.

If players decide to let the creature die, they can choose to destroy the brain via dialog or simply walk away from the body. However, this will make the game’s initial section harder as it will mean one less party member is available.