How to dual-wield weapons in Baldur's Gate 3 for two-weapon fighting

Baldur's Gate 3
(Image credit: Larian Studios)

Dual-wielding two weapons in Baldur's Gate 3 is a particular strategy that usually works best for dexterity-heavy martial classes, but even then is a risky way of fighting that doesn't always prove superior to just one weapon. With both advantages and disadvantages to fighting in this manner, it's something you'll want to understand fully before you start swinging two swords at once - or if you want to start creating a build based around it.

With that in mind, I'll explain how to dual-wield in Baldur's Gate 3 below, as well as how good fighting with two weapons is and if it's worth it at all.

How to dual-wield weapons in Baldur's Gate 3

Tutorial for how to dual wield in Baldur's Gate 3

(Image credit: Larian Studios)

Dual-wielding in Baldur's Gate 3 is done by following these steps:

  1. Go into your character's inventory.
  2. Equip two weapons with the "Light" property in both melee weapon slots. 
  3. Press "R" or the little UI button marked above, right between melee and ranged options, to toggle Dual-Wielding on/off.
  4. Your character will now attack with both weapons in combat.

Dual-wielding is a little more complicated than just "more damage" though. Fighting with two weapons in Baldur's Gate 3 uses both your action, to strike with your main hand, and your bonus action, to attack with your off-hand, meaning you won't be able to use that bonus action to shove, dip, jump, or anything else.

Is dual-wielding in Baldur's Gate 3 good?

Baldur's Gate 3

(Image credit: Larian)

Our experience is that dual-wielding is one of those strategies that's alright at early levels, but gets weaker later on unless you're specifically making a build based around it. Losing a bonus action is a big penalty for many Baldur's Gate 3 classes, especially when a shield or two-handed weapon can provide perks in your off-hand without using up that bonus action in the process. 

Dual-wielding also isn't as powerful as you'd think, as the off-hand weapon loses the damage bonus your character's dexterity or strength adds to it - so a weapon that does 1d6+Dex damage in your main hand does only 1D6 damage in your off hand. 

Generally there are just better options for fighting as a whole, unless you're specifically picking feats, powers and weapons that work for this sort of strategy.

What weapons can you dual-wield in Baldur's Gate 3?

Weapons are compared at a merchant's shop in Baldur's Gate 3

(Image credit: Larian Studios)

Dual-wielding in Baldur's Gate can be done with any two weapons that have the "light" quality, which you can check by holding the cursor over them in the inventory menu. Some light weapon types include:

  • Clubs (but not Greatclubs)
  • Daggers
  • Hand Axes
  • Light Hammers
  • Scimitars
  • Shortswords
  • Sickles

Magic or unusual variants of these weapons don't lose their "light" status, so make sure to check to see if you have any superior enchanted versions of these! Light weapons often tend to have the "finesse" quality, scaling to Dexterity, making them more valid for classes like Rogues and Rangers.

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Joel Franey
Guides Writer

Joel Franey is a writer, journalist, podcaster and raconteur with a Masters from Sussex University, none of which has actually equipped him for anything in real life. As a result he chooses to spend most of his time playing video games, reading old books and ingesting chemically-risky levels of caffeine. He is a firm believer that the vast majority of games would be improved by adding a grappling hook, and if they already have one, they should probably add another just to be safe. You can find old work of his at USgamer, Gfinity, Eurogamer and more besides.