I noticed as I am playing through the game that there are tons of side missions! As I progress through the story though I see in the upper left hand corner that I am failing alot of these missions. Do you think it's worth it for me to start over and finish all these side quests before I progress in the main story? I'm still on chapter one.
The advantage of doing the side quests if that you can build up your XP, allowing you to level up more and use your Talents for increased abilities. Some, like Poker and Arm Wrestling, can be skipped, but the rest do have an impact on the story, or give you more insight into what is going on. If you are only in Act1, I would load up a save near at the beginning of Act 1 and complete the side quests along with the main quests. The Troll Trouble quest will net you some very nice armor that will bring you through into to Act2, so do that one early.