bg3 screenshot of an out of focus grassy area with a pause symbol overlaid

Baldur’s Gate 3: How to Pause Your Game (BG3)

Make sure you know when to take a break.

Battles in Baldur’s Gate 3 can take a solid chunk of time during your adventure, so taking a moment to breathe could be necessary. Here’s how to pause in BG3.

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Can You Pause in Baldur’s Gate 3?

Unfortunately, there’s no true pause in BG3, but turn-based mode is the closest thing to it. For those of you with a hectic life, the ability to pause a game is crucial to your enjoyment levels, so that may be stressful to hear. Thankfully, much like games in the Souls series, there are a few ways to “soft” pause that you can do to take a small break.

BG3 screenshot of the the turn-based mode option highlighted on the quick menu.
Screenshot by Prima Games

How to Pause in BG3

Turn on Turn-Based mode if you’re looking to “pause” in BG3. While in turn-based mode, you will swap to a battle-ready position, even if you aren’t in battle. However, this may not take effect right away depending on the turn, or the event in progress. This mode isn’t a true pause, but it will at least keep things from getting too hairy.

Pausing BG3 with Turn-Based Mode on Console

On console, you can “pause” BG3 by pulling the Right Trigger and heading to the hourglass icon. This is the console’s way of turning on turn-based mode with a traditional controller. If you were hoping minimizing the game by pressing the PS button on your PS5 controller or heading to the console’s Home menu would pause BG3, it unfortunately doesn’t. Much like when pressing the “Options” button, characters and dialogue will still continue to advance and cutscenes will still play out even when you’re entirely away from the game in the console’s Home menu.

Pausing BG3 with Turn-Based Mode on PC

For those playing on a computer, you can “pause” BG3 with turn-based mode by simply clicking on the hourglass, or by pressing the space bar. And like with consoles, even if you press “Escape,” your game won’t truly pause. There will still be passive gameplay, depending on when you’ve tried to pause. You might hear party conversations, or even return to your game to still see them walking around.

Return to Camp

Another pause option in BG3 is to return to your Camp. At camp, you can take a little bit of a break, swap out your party members, replenish your supplies, and heal up before you and your ragtag group of acquaintances head back out on the adventure of a lifetime. Yet again, it’s not a true pause, but time doesn’t matter here, and you should at least be safe from anything pressing. It may even give you a chance to speak to your Guardian if you’re hoping to spice things up.

As long as you’re in a safe spot like camp, you can breathe easily, and you won’t need to worry about getting jumped by a band of creatures that are hoping to bring an end to your whole career. It’s unfortunate that BG3 doesn’t offer a hard pause button for those that are hoping for a completely safe spot to relax. However, simply knowing how to hide out when things get dicey can at least take some stress off your shoulders.

There may not be a way to pause in BG3, but if you’re taking a break, don’t forget to pet the dog before embarking back out on your epic quest. And be sure to check out our Baldur’s Gate 3 section below to learn more about this impressively large adventure.


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Image of Shaun Cichacki
Shaun Cichacki
As a fan of RPGs, Action & Retro titles, Shaun has been gaming since he was a young boy. With an overwhelming obsession involving Metal Gear Solid and Pizza Tower, you know you're in for a wild ride when it comes to things he's writing about.
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Seth Lowe
Seth has been a writer for Prima Games since 2023. An avid Nintendo lover and a true Pokemon master, surely you'll find him glued to a Game Boy no matter where he is. You can find his previous work at TheGamer.
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