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Baldur’s Gate 3 classes explained

Baldur's Gate 3 has 12 classic DnD character classes to pick from, so here's the full list of BG3 classes, to help you find the one for you.

baldurs gate 3 classes a profile shot of a character in bg3.

August 3, 2023 You can now read our Baldur’s Gate 3 review.

With 12 Baldur’s Gate 3 classes to choose from, and plenty of subclasses for each, RPG players are spoilt for choice. Will you choose a tanky Fighter or Barbarian and tear enemies to shreds? Or do you prefer the flashy spells and combat tactics of a spellcaster? Our BG3 classes guide can help you find the perfect fit.

Now the game’s fully released (for our impressions, read our Baldur’s Gate 3 review) we’ve got a clearer picture of how each of the game’s DnD classes plays, from the outset of the game up to the BG3 max level of 12.

This guide will walk you through all the Baldur’s Gate 3 classes and subclasses, including their DnD armorDnD weapons, and DnD skill proficiencies. Class isn’t everything; your choice from the Baldur’s Gate 3 races will have a big impact on your story and gameplay, as will your choice of subclass (which comes a few DnD level ups into the game). But, just as in Dungeons and Dragons, your class is the biggest pre-game decision you have to make.

There are also expansive 5e multiclassing options to help you craft the perfect Baldur’s Gate 3 build – but, as ever, we’d recommend getting the general hang of things before going down that more complex road. In the meantime, if you need any help with Baldur’s Gate 3 companions and their Baldur’s Gate 3 romances, or if you’re looking for tips playing Baldur’s Gate 3 co-op, we can help you out.

Before we jump in, here’s a quick overview courtesy of Larian and D&D:

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The Baldur’s Gate 3 classes are:

Baldur's Gate 3 classes - a barbarian in BG3 covered in warpaint, on the level up screen

Baldur’s Gate 3 Barbarian

Primary Ability Strength
Weapon Simple, Martial
Armor Light, Medium, Shield
Saving throws Strength, Constitution
Subclasses Wildheart, Berserker, Wild Magic

The Baldur’s Gate Barbarian is an angry type, who charges into combat ready to hack and slash with nature’s rage. Their Rage ability allows them to deal additional damage with melee weapons, improvised weapons, and thrown objects ranging from chairs to goblins.

For more on the tabletop version of the Barbarian 5e, stomp on over to our complete D&D guide. 

Baldur's Gate 3 classes - two bards, an elf and a halfling, playing instruments.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Bard

Primary Ability Charisma
Weapon Simple, Hand Crossbow, Rapier, Longsword, Shortsword
Armor Light
Saving throws Dexterity, Charisma
Subclasses College of Lore, College of Valor, College of Swords

Able to cast spells through playing an instrument, a Baldur’s Gate 3 Bard excels at hampering foes with debuffs, and strengthening allies. Bards have the ability Jack of All Trades, allowing them to add half their proficiency bonus to skill checks they’re not proficient in. They can also grant their party the effect of a short rest with the Song of Rest action.

At third level, a bard can choose to specialize in one of two subclasses or colleges. The College of Lore grants a grab bag of proficiencies – intimidation, arcana, and sleight of hand – as well as a unique debuff action, Cutting Words. The College of Valor is more martial focused, granting medium armor, martial weapon and shield know-how, as well as the Combat Inspiration ability. And the College of Swords goes even harder in combat, adopting a fighting style and becoming extra dexterous in battle.

Learn more about building a Baldur’s Gate 3 Bard in our full class guide. 

Baldur's gate 3 classes - a screenshot of the BG3 character screen.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Cleric

Primary Ability Wisdom
Weapon Simple
Armor Light, Medium, Shield
Saving throws Wisdom, Charisma
Subclasses Life Domain, Light Domain, Trickery Domain, Knowledge Domain, Nature Domain, Tempest Domain, War Domain

The Baldur’s Gate 3 Cleric picks a deity to worship upon character creation, which means they chose their subclass immediately. They can heal their party or hamper their foes with divine spells, and can cast three DnD cantrips, prepare three level one spells and get two subclass spells at first level.

Here’s our Cleric 5e guide for a deeper look at the class’ spells and domains.

Baldur's Gate 3 classes - a druid woman with tattoos from BG3

Baldur’s Gate 3 Druid

Primary Ability Wisdom
Weapon Simple
Armor Light, Medium, Shield
Saving throws Intelligence, Wisdom
Subclasses Circle of The Moon, Circle of The Land, Circle of Spores

The Baldur’s Gate 3 Druid can turn into an animal, and wield a range of nature-themed spells – some offensive, some defensive or healing. They start the game with two cantrips and four spells to pick between.

Gather round for a full look at this class in the DnD Druid guide. 

Baldur's Gate 3 classes - a screenshot of combat in the game baldur's gate 3

Baldur’s Gate 3 Fighter

Primary Ability Strength
Weapon Simple, Martial
Armor Light, Medium, Heavy, Shield
Saving throws Strength, Constitution
Subclasses Battle Master, Eldritch Knight, Champion

The Baldur’s Gate 3 Fighter is one of the more straightforward classes you can pick. They are great with all kinds of weapons and armor – you can kit them out in leather with a dagger, or in plate mail with a giant axe, whatever you prefer. Their Second Wind ability lets them regain HP in combat.

Here’s our Fighter 5e guide for a full look at the class in the tabletop game. 

Baldur's Gate 3 classes - Larian image of a Dragonborn character

Baldur’s Gate 3 Monk

Primary ability Dexterity, Wisdom
Weapon Simple weapons, shortswords, unarmed
Armor None
Saving throws Strength, Dexterity
Subclasses Way of the Open Hand, Way of the Shadow, Way of the Four Elements

The Baldur’s Gate 3 Monk is inspired by real Tibetan monks as much as the martial artists of classic Kung Fu movies. This means you can expect to wield furious fists and channel the art of Ki to perform awesome abilities. You’ll be getting up close and personal with enemies in combat without any armor or weapons to rely on – but when you can literally deflect missiles, what have you to worry about?

Learn more about the Baldur’s Gate 3 Monk to get a feel for this class before you test it out. 

Baldur's Gate 3 classes - Paladin in character creator screen from BG3

Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin

Primary ability Strength
Weapon Simple, martial
Armour All armour, shields
Saving throws Wisdom, Charisma
Subclasses Oath of the Ancients, Oath of Devotion, Oath of Vengeance, Oathbreaker

Paladins are one-part divine magic users and one-part hefty sword-slingers. In Baldur’s Gate 3, the Paladin class is bound by a moral code – and they take it pretty seriously. You can choose whether you want to play by the rules, of course, but breaking promises might turn you into an Oathbreaker. This is a hidden subclass exclusively for Paladins who have fallen from grace.

Looking for more Paladin power? Our Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin guide can help you out. 

Baldur's gate 3 classes - Baldurs Gate 3 screenshot showing an elf ranger character wearing an antler headdress

Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger

Primary Ability Dexterity
Weapon Simple, Martial
Armour Light, Medium, Shield
Saving throws Strength, Dexterity
Subclasses Beast Master, Hunter, Gloom Stalker

The Ranger class in Baldur’s Gate 3 is a wildsman that knows the terrain and excels at hunting their chosen quarry. At first level, Rangers select a favoured enemy and natural explorer type. Both of these options can grant the character additional spells, proficiencies, and resistances.

If Ranger sounds like the class for you, you might enjoy this comprehensive DnD Ranger guide. 

Baldur's gate 3 classes - Baldurs Gate 3 screenshot showing a dwarf rogue character during an animal handling roll

Baldur’s Gate 3 Rogue

Primary Ability Dexterity
Weapon Simple, Hand Crossbows, Shortswords, Rapiers, Longswords
Armour Light
Saving throws Dexterity, Intelligence
Subclasses Thief, Arcane Trickster, Assassin

The Rogue class in Baldur’s Gate 3 is the sneakiest option you can pick – as you might expect. It can take out enemies with stealth using Sneak Attack abilities, and excels at picking locks and disarming traps.

Our Rogue 5e guide can tell you more about this class’ subclasses and what tricks it has up its sleeves. 

Baldur's Gate 3 classes - a sorcerer with a glowy light in her hand

Baldur’s Gate 3 Sorcerer

Primary Ability Charisma
Weapon Daggers, Light Crossbows, Quarterstaves
Armour None
Saving throws Charisma, Constitution
Subclasses Wild Magic, Draconic Bloodline, Storm Sorcery

The Sorcerer class in Baldur’s Gate 3 is an atypical kind of spellcaster that’s naturally massively magically talented, and starts out as either a Wild Mage, or with a Draconic Bloodline. At level one you get four cantrips and two level one spells.

Here’s a complete DnD Sorcerer guide if you can’t wait ’til launch day for a full version of the class. 

Baldur's gate 3 classes - character creator screen for Baldur's Gate 3 showing a warlock

Baldur’s Gate 3 Warlock

Primary Ability Charisma
Weapon Simple
Armour Light
Saving throws Wisdom, Charisma
Subclasses The Fiend, The Great Old One, Archfey

The Warlock class in Baldur’s Gate 3 is a spellcaster whose supernatural abilities come from some eerie, powerful being known as a patron. You pick your subclass at level one, along with two cantrips and two level one spells. Several Warlock spells are unique to a particular subclass.

Ready to make the pact? Time to swing by our full Warlock 5e class guide

Baldurs gate 3 classes - human a woman holding a candle

Baldur’s Gate 3 Wizard

Primary Ability Intelligence
Weapon Daggers, Darts, Quarterstaves, Light Crossbows, Slings
Armour None
Saving throws Intelligence, Wisdom
Subclasses Abjuration, Evocation, Conjuration, Divination, Enchantment, Necromancy, Illusion, Transmutation

The Wizard class in Baldur’s Gate 3 is your more bog standard magical class – if such a thing is possible. You can’t use armour, or most weapons, but you trade that up for potent magical powers. At level one a Wizard gets three cantrips and an impressive six level one spells. Their Arcane Recovery ability lets them regain expended spell slots, helping them stretch this even further.

Here’s a complete list of Wizard 5e subclasses in our comprehensive D&D guide.

Need more tips for BG3? Here’s all you need to know about the Baldur’s Gate 3 companions. We can even recommend some of the other great D&D games to try next.