When beginning your adventure along the Sword Coast, it’s important to start with your best foot forward. But with twelve classes (and 46 subclasses) in Baldur’s Gate 3 to choose from, it can be daunting, especially for a beginner new to D&D 5th edition.
But don’t worry. We’re help you start your journey with the best class that matches your playstyle and help you tackle any problem that gets in your way. We’ll be going over the best beginner classes in Baldur’s Gate 3 to give you your best start on Faerȗn.
Criteria for Our Choices
Before getting into the actual guide, let me go over how we’ll be choosing the classes. We’ll be coming at this guide through the lens of someone new to 5th edition and Baldur’s Gate 3. Classes will be chosen based on ease of use, ease of survivability, and versatility.
Furthermore, the following classes are not ranked in any particular order. Each class thrives in a different situation and their effectiveness is dependent on the rest of your party as well.
With that said, let’s get started!
Starting this guide is the Wizard. The Wizard is probably one of the most recognizable classes in D&D. When people picture the hobby, the ancient wizard casting lightning bolts and fireballs is usually what pops into their head.
A master of the arcane arts, the Wizard has the biggest spell list in the game, covering all schools of magic. While it may seem daunting at first, and the low health pool might be concerning, the sheer versatility of the Wizard makes it one of the best beginner-friendly classes in Baldur’s Gate 3.
Wizards are Intelligence casters, meaning all of their spellcasting is based on their Int score. So when playing a Wizard you want to make sure your Intelligence is the highest it can be, as that’s your bread and butter.
After that Constitution and Dexterity should be next in importance. Your Constitution score ensures you can maintain concentration for spells that rely on concentration, (as well as up the amount of health you get each level). Your Dexterity increases your passive Armor Class, or how difficult it is to hit you, and your initiative.
Everything else in terms of stats is up to your personal preference. The best takeaway from this is to focus on Intelligence first, then Constitution, then Dexterity.
Subclasses for the Wizard work a little differently compared to other classes. Instead of receiving a subclass at level three that changes how their base class plays, Wizards choose a school of magic to focus on at level two. Whichever school you choose will grant a unique feature tied to that school of magic as well as causing you to excel at casting that type of magic.
The schools of magic are as follows: Abjuration, Evocation, Necromancy, Conjuration, Enchantment, Divination, Illusion, and Transmutation. When choosing a school of magic, see what ability they give you and what type of spells you tend to like more.
Ease of Use
While the low HP, lack of armor, and lack of martial alternatives may seem like a downside, the Wizard’s spells make up the difference. With all the magic you get, you’ll have a response for every situation and then some.
Your low hp and lack of armor are also mitigated by spells that can make you one of the hardest things to hit on the battlefield. For this reason, Wizard is one of the best starting classes in Baldur’s Gate 3.
Next in this guide is the Paladin. Sworn to an oath and duty-bound to follow its tenets, the Paladin is the righteous hand of whatever god they decide to follow. With a mix of martial prowess and spells, the Paladin is a very safe class choice for beginners in Baldur’s Gate 3.
Paladins are fighters and defenders first, righteous spellcasters second. This means that your primary combat stat should be a top priority. Usually, this means Strength, but there are examples of Dex-based Paladins out there.
Since Paladins are Charisma casters that means we want to focus on Charisma next to ensure that our Paladin features and spells have potency. And finally, since we will most likely be fighting in the front, we want to make sure our Constitution is also high enough to keep us alive.
To sum it all up, we want to focus on our primary fighting stat first (usually Strength), then Charisma and Constitution.
Much like the Wizard, the Paladin’s subclasses work a little differently. Instead of choosing a different subclass at level three, you choose your Oath at level one. This Oath determines the tenets your character has sworn by to gain their holy powers.
This determines things like what channeling your Oath does and what spells you learn as you level up. This also determines what rules you need to follow while playing the game or risk breaking your Oath.
The Oaths you can take are as follows: Oath of the Ancients, Oath of Devotion, and Oath of Vengeance. If you plan on playing Paladin, look at the different Oaths and see which one you think you can roleplay best. That, or which spell list you like more.
Ease of Use
With high HP, heavy armor, a fighting style, spellcasting, and the ability to divine smite their enemies, the Paladin is a very safe option for the best beginner class in Baldur’s Gate 3. You’ll be the bulwark of your team and deal a hefty amount of damage to boot.
And with their entire spellbook given to them, they don’t have the problem of needing to choose spells they think will be useful. On top of that, if you don’t like spellcasting, just use your spell slots for divine smite for even more damage. It’s really hard to mess up with Paladin.
Moving on to the spellcasting cousin of the Paladin, we have the Cleric. Devoted to one of the many gods of Faerȗn, the Cleric channels their god’s favor into divine spells that can aid their team or punish their enemies. While not as resilient as the Paladin, Clerics have enough versatility to hold their own in martial combat as well.
Clerics are Wisdom casters which means you want to focus primarily on their Wisdom score. Just like the Wizard this will increase the potency of their spells.
After that, it’s entirely determined on what type of character you want to play. You have medium armor and shield proficiency, so you can focus on Strength to become a melee presence. If you prefer to stay back and buff from a distance you can focus on Dexterity and use ranged.
At the very least, never dump your Constitution score. More health is always important.
Continuing the trend of classes that don’t have normal subclasses is the Cleric’s Domains. At level one, the Cleric can choose which Domain they belong to. This determines some class features, which additional Domain spells you’ll learn, and how your Channel Divinity operates.
The Domains you can choose from are as follows: Life Domain, Light Domain, Knowledge Domain, Trickery Domain, Nature Domain, Tempest Domain, and War Domain. As I said before, the Cleric offers a lot of versatility and freedom to try things out, and its list of Domains reflect that.
Ease of Use
While a tad more complicated than the Paladin, the freedom at which a player can build a Cleric makes this class very easy to use. You can fit into any adventuring party with ease and still be useful.
Furthermore, access to healing spells means you always have a solution when fights get too dangerous. That alone makes Cleric one of the best classes for a beginner in Baldur’s Gate 3.
Moving onto our last spellcaster on the list, we have the Druid. Devoting themselves not to a god but nature itself, Druids draw their power from the world around them. Capable of Shape Changing into the animals they live alongside, Druids offer a unique path for handling combat.
Like Clerics, Druids are Wisdom casters. This means that your primary focus should be on Wisdom to determine the potency of your spells and the number of spells you can learn.
While Wild Shape gives a Druid some versatility when determining stats, I would recommend focusing on Dexterity and Constitution after Wisdom. This will allow you to have a decent health pool and Armor Class when you’re not Wild Shaped.
Like the Wizards, the Druid chooses their Druid Circle at level two. This Druid Circle determines what type of Circle Spells you can learn, what class features you get as you level, and, in the case of the Circle of the Moon, what animals you can change into.
The Druid Circles are as follows: Circle of the Moon, Circle of the Land, and Circle of the Spores. Each Circle is interesting because it determines how your Druid interacts with nature itself and what abilities they are gifted.
Ease of Use
With a mix of support and damaging spells, the Druid is not only useful but easy to play if you know what your role in the party is. This becomes even easier with Circle of the Moon when you can Wild Shape into combat forms and run into melee.
Since your stats turn into that of the animals, you don’t need to take the usual stats for melee combat. This makes you into a type of switch hitter without having to sacrifice stats.
Furthermore, Wild Shape acts as a type of over-shield as when your health hits zero in animal form, you go back to your normal health in humanoid form. This can make the Druid incredibly hard to kill and thus makes it a great class choice for newcomers to Baldur’s Gate 3.
Next in our guide is our first fully martial class – the Barbarian. Filled with an unstoppable rage, the Barbarian charges into the thick of combat and doesn’t stop fighting until there’s no one left. With a little practice, they can even channel their rage to accomplish impressive feats thought impossible.
If it wasn’t obvious, Barbarians want high Strength. The higher the better. After that, your focus should be Constitution. With their unique class feature Unarmored Defense, Barbarians can add their Constitution modifier to their Armor Class.
After Strength and Constitution, you should raise Dexterity. Your role is to be in the middle of combat. Always. A couple of points in Dexterity to raise your Armor Class can only help.
At level three, the Barbarian gets the choice of three subclasses; Wildeheart, Berserker, and Wild Magic. These subclasses change the way the Barbarian channels their rage and what happens when they enter that frenzied state.
Wildheart lets you take on aspects of animals to give you unique abilities during your rage. Berserker allows you to attack more times per round at the cost of gaining mounting disadvantages from fatigue. Lastly, Wild Magic lets loose a random magical effect whenever you rage.
Ease of Use
Barbarian is not a difficult class to play and thus makes it one of the beginner classes in Baldur’s Gate 3. Thanks to its lack of complexity, anyone can pick up a Barbarian and have fun with it.
The high amount of health and big damage output also means that your character will be an absolute nightmare in combat. If you just want to turn off your brain for a bit and just smash the nearest face, Barbarian is your go-to choice.
The final class in this guide is the ever-classic Fighter. The jack-of-all-trades class, the Fighter can do just about anything you want them to do. All weapons are known to the Fighter and they have boundless versatility when it comes to fitting in an adventuring party.
It’s a little difficult to advise on stats for the Fighter because they can be made into just about anything, aside from a powerful spellcaster. If you know what weapon you want to use, focus on the stat that weapon uses. So either Dexterity or Strength.
Constitution is always a good stat to high because it determines health. After that, it’s up to you and how you want to build them out.
The Fighter has access to three subclasses at level three: Battle Master, Eldritch Knight, and Champion. These subclasses help focus your fighter a bit into areas of expertise.
Battle Master focuses on using tactical maneuvers to destroy your enemies. Eldritch Knight adds a bit of spellcasting to the Fighter to provide some helpful spells, and Champion just makes you all-around better at physical feats.
Ease of Use
The Fighter is incredibly easy to use and very beginner friendly, because it’s hard to make a bad fighter. As long as you know what you want to do, the Fighter can facilitate it.
The multitude of bonus feats they get also means that a pure Fighter can become incredibly strong very quickly. Plus, this class also allows for a lot of experimentation because you’re not so feat starved.
Join the High Ground!
And that’s it for our guide on the best beginner classes in Baldur’s Gate 3. Do you agree with our choices? Is there a class you think is more beginner friendly? Let us know in the comments below and subscribe for more content like this.