Best Baldur's Gate 3 classes, subclasses and tier list

Baldur's Gate 3
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Finding the best BG3 classes can be tricky, especially when subclasses are thrown into the mix. Whether you prefer a strong melee fighter like Barbarians or Paladins or opt for spellcasters, your class in Baldur's Gate 3 will influence how you play the game and interact with its combat systems.

But with such a variety of class choices on offer, choosing the best of the bunch is not easy. There are multiple factors to consider, from multiclass matchups to the unique quirks of each class. Paladins force you to abide by a sacred oath, Warlocks can replenish their spell slots upon a short rest, and Clerics are formidable magic-wielding healers. It's possible to respec your class in Baldur's Gate 3 once you reach a certain point, so your choice here need not be final - but still, the ultimate BG3 classes tier list to help you pick.

Best Baldur's Gate 3 classes and tier list

baldur's gate 3 party

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Our Baldur's Gate 3 class tier list breaks up into four tiers, best to worst. This list has been updated to reflect the full release version as released for PC in August 2023.

We have some best build guides for a few of these so click on the links below for class build tips:

Picking the best Baldur's Gate 3 class for you is one of the most important choices you'll make, as this will determine your health, abilities, spells, the various Baldur's Gate 3 skills and most of your key character details. 

The good news is that all the classes are good in some way and there are no truly 'bad' choices, but certain options are definitely better than others. That's largely because Dungeons and Dragons Fifth Edition - the TTRPG which this is all modelled on - has never managed to get its classes balanced out at an even power level - and Baldur's Gate 3 is no different.

Ultimately though, the class you pick should always be the one you like the most! Anything you pick is absolutely capable of making it through the game, all of them are fun to play, and the fact that you can choose from a pool of companions with different classes means that you can always arrange your party to fill in the various roles and abilities your character can't manage.

All Baldur's Gate 3 classes and what they do

Baldur's Gate 3 Bard class

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There are 12 classes in Baldur's Gate 3 currently:

  • Barbarian
    • Tank and melee fighter, using Strength and Constitution.
  • Bard
    • Support spellcaster and skills user, focused on Charisma and Dexterity.
  • Cleric
    • Spellcaster whose powers vary depending on their god, but always uses Wisdom.
  • Druid
    • Spellcaster capable of transformation, buffs and support, powered by Wisdom stat.
  • Fighter
    • Diverse class that can be specced into any non-magical combat, using either Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, or any combination of the three.
  • Monk
    • Unarmed warrior with great speed, mobility and no reliance on equipment - but does need high Dexterity and Wisdom.
  • Paladin
    • Melee warrior, tank, healer and support class focused on Strength and Charisma.
  • Ranger
    • Melee and ranged fighter with some support magic and utility skills fueled by Dexterity and Wisdom.
  • Rogue
    • Dexterity-based stealth and skills user with a focus on high-damage strikes.
  • Sorcerer
    • Charisma-powered glass-cannon spellcaster with an emphasis on raw firepower and abilities dependent on a special bloodline
  • Warlock
    • Spellcaster with a versatile "jack of all trades" pool of charisma-based spells that vary according to their magical patron
  • Wizard
    • Intelligence-based spellcaster who specialises in schools of magic and can learn more spells than any other class.

Clearly an important element here is having the right key attributes to match the class. A Sorcerer, for example, will ideally have a good Charisma score, as that's the core attribute that fuels their spells, while Constitution and Dexterity will help them avoid or negate damage to reduce their status as a glass cannon. 

Still, there's enough complexity to classes, subclasses and how all their abilities intermingle to give you plenty of options 

All Baldur's Gate 3 subclasses

Baldur's Gate 3 companions party members

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We've got the full list of BG3 subclasses below, as well as what level you can expect to choose them (it varies from class to class).

  • Barbarian subclasses (chosen at level 3)
    • Berserker
    • Wildheart
    • Wild Magic 
  • Bard subclasses (chosen at level 3)
    • College of Lore
    • College of Swords
    • College of Valor
  • Cleric subclasses (chosen at level 1)
    • Knowledge Domain
    • Life Domain
    • Light Domain
    • Nature Domain
    • Tempest Domain
    • Trickery Domain
    • War Domain
  • Druid subclasses (chosen at level 2)
    • Circle of Land
    • Circle of Moon
    • Circle of Spores
  • Fighter subclasses (chosen at level 3)
    • Battle Master
    • Champion
    • Eldritch Knight
  • Monk subclasses (chosen at level 3)
    • Path of the Four Elements
    • Path of the Open Hand
    • Path of Shadow
  • Paladin subclasses (chosen at level 1)
    • Oath of Ancients
    • Oath of Devotion
    • Oath of Vengeance
    • Oathbreaker (comes later as a consequence of breaking any of the above oaths)
  • Ranger subclasses (chosen at level 3)
    • Beast Master
    • Gloom Stalker
    • Hunter
  • Rogue subclasses (chosen at level 3)
    • Arcane Trickster
    • Assassin
    • Thief
  • Sorcerer subclasses (chosen at level 1)
    • Draconic Bloodline
    • Storm Sorcery Bloodline
    • Wild Magic Bloodline
  • Warlock subclasses (chosen at level 1)
    • Archfey
    • Fiend
    • Great Old One
  • Wizard subclasses (chosen at level 2)
    • School of Abjuration
    • School of Conjuration
    • School of Divination
    • School of Enchantment
    • School of Evocation
    • School of Illusion
    • School of Necromancy
    • School of Transmutation

With 22 new subclasses added at launch, that brings the total number of Baldur's Gate 3 subclasses up to 47 subclasses in total, a massive amount of options when building your character.

All Baldur's Gate 3 classes

Let's take a look in more details at all the Baldur's Gate 3 classes, including their tier, type, attributes, pros and cons.


Baldur's Gate 3 Barbarian class

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  • Tier ranking: B
  • Class type: Melee tank
  • Primary Attributes: Strength, Constitution
  • Secondary Attributes: Dexterity, Wisdom
    • Pros: More health than any other class, good frontline power
    • Cons: Few skills or ranged options

Baldur's Gate 3 Barbarians are similar to the Fighter, but more focused at the cost of versatility. They're great at fighting up front, Raging to gain bonuses, but struggle in any other context as they lack a huge amount of skills to fall back on. However, their high durability means they can take a real beating and live through most failures. Play aggressively - it's how they thrive.

Best Barbarian subclass: Berserker. The Berserker massively ramps up damage with the Frenzy ability, allowing you to make extra attacks and throws as bonus actions. It's not fancy, but it's very powerful.


Baldur's Gate 3 bard class

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  • Tier ranking: S
  • Class type: Charmer, support spellcaster and jack-of-all-trades skill user
  • Primary Attributes: Charisma, Dexterity
  • Secondary Attributes: Intelligence, Constitution
    • Pros: Good all-rounder, very good at manipulation, something for any situation
    • Cons: No massive firepower options

Bards are incredibly useful, and likeable, appropriately enough. One of several Charisma spellcaster classes, they have a variety of spells that support, heal and control, but have slightly better armor and health than sorcerers, so they're a little less risky to use in combat. Bards might not have any massively damaging magic, but they can often avoid fighting altogether with both physical and magical charm, or deducing an alternative path if you push into an Intelligence build. Pick from the Baldur's Gate 3 backgrounds carefully here, as these choices matter more for such skill-focused characters.

Best Bard subclass: College of Valor. The two subclasses are incredibly similar but we consider Valor superior, as it's generally more useful to enhance your allies with Combat Inspiration than punish foes with Cutting Words - plus equipment proficiencies are probably better than the three skills you get.


Baldur's Gate 3 cleric class

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  • Tier ranking: S
  • Class type: God-powered spellcaster with a general support/heal focus
  • Primary Attributes: Wisdom
  • Secondary Attributes: Constitution, Strength
    • Pros: Best healer, very flexible as a whole, some great spells
    • Cons: Martial weapons would be nice, usual limitations of spell slots

Clerics were pretty broken in D&D 5E and they're broken here too: these spellcasters make for some of the best healers in the game, but also have the firepower and versatility to back it up. Not only that but they can also equip medium armor and shields making them a pretty potent class as a whole. The Guidance cantrip alone is a bit of a gamebreaker and one of the best Baldur's Gate 3 spells, adding a D4 to anything outside of combat. If there was one class that you could fill a party with and nothing else while still thriving, it'd probably be the Cleric.

Best Cleric subclass: Life Domain. It's a close call between this and the Light Domain, as frankly there's little reason to choose Trickery considering you've got Shadowheart in your party to fill that role. The Life Domain boosts healing which is the main point of having a Cleric and it grants heavy armor proficiency, which can be great if you didn't put much into the character's Dexterity.


Baldur's Gate 3 druid class

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  • Tier ranking: B
  • Class type: Support, control and utility spellcaster based on all things natural
  • Primary Attributes: Wisdom
  • Secondary Attributes: Constitution, Dexterity
    • Pros: Not too dependant on spells, Wild Shape rules
    • Cons: Not as much offensive power as you'd hope

Druids basically have two tricks - an array of nature spells and Wild Shape, which lets you transform into animals. It's an incredibly versatile power that also lets you play tank with little risk because you don't share hit points with your humanoid form and just turn back to normal if your animal shape gets KO'd. The Druid also has a good selection of spells, but aside from a few notable standouts, like Shillelagh and Heat Metal, the versatility has to make up for any real punch.

Best Druid subclass: Circle of the Moon. Wild Shape is incredibly useful and powerful, so just double down on it. Circle of the Moon is all about enhancing your Wild Shape, giving it more options and elasticity. Circle of the Land is fine, but it's no substitute for turning into a Polar Bear and drawing aggro to a body that isn't even yours.


Baldur's Gate 3 fighter class

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  • Tier ranking: B
  • Class type: A blank check for non-magical combat with any weapon or armor
  • Primary Attributes: Strength, Dexterity, Constitution
  • Secondary Attributes: Wisdom
    • Pros: Tough, able to use any weapon or armor
    • Cons: Bit boring, not especially good out of combat

The Fighter is basically a generic choice that allows for any build of weapons and armor, depending on what you make. You should pick either Strength or Dexterity at the start and work from there, focusing either on one or the other. Fighters are dependable in combat, and Action Surge is nice, but outside a fight they're a bit flimsy and lacking in real contributions. Considering you already have a Fighter in your party with Lae'zel, you should probably pick something else.

Best Fighter subclass: Battle Master. Battle Master is more versatile than the spellcasting Eldritch Knight option, as it gives you a ton of powerful combat abilities. We suggest picking Riposte, Pushing Attack and Disarming Attack, which will give you something for everything.


Baldur's gate 3 Monk class

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  • Tier rank: A
  • Class type: A martial arts powerhouse who doesn't need to rely on weapons or equipment, using high mobility and unarmed strikes.
  • Primary Attributes: Dexterity, Wisdom
  • Secondary attributes: Strength, Constitution
    • Pros: Strong unarmed attacks, less reliance on main weapon, can deflect missiles and send them back to source
    • Cons: Poor at ranged attacks, poor party healing, difficult to do heavy damage

The newest class in Baldur's Gate 3, Monk is a decent choice if you favor methodical and planned bursts of attack over all-out brutality. Similar to Rogues, Monks work well from close proximity when they have the element of surprise on their side. With little in the way of innate ranged attack strength at your disposal, you can choose to focus your ki in various ways to help reach those more distant targets. Wood half-elves make decent Monks, thanks to a shared proclivity for moving quickly and being light on one's feet.

Best subclass: Way of the Four Elements. This school allows you to learn spells and use new elemental attacks to fill in the gaps left by the Monk's lack of base-level ranged potential.


Baldur's Gate 3 paladin class

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  • Tier ranking: A
  • Class type: Charisma spellcaster, healer and melee tank
  • Primary Attributes: Strength, Charisma
  • Secondary Attributes: Constitution, Wisdom
    • Pros: Charisma, support options and healing, limitless equipment options
    • Cons: No real ranged or massive firepower options, spells are limited

Paladins are a lot of fun, and a good alternative to a Cleric. They're have a wide range of uses, including melee tanks, and are capable frontline warriors who can throw out magic to heals, support and control a battle, or just obliterate foes. On top of all that their Charisma mean that they still serve a role outside of fighting as good-looking charmers.

Best Paladin subclass: Oath of the Ancients. It's another close call, but Oath of the Ancients is a little more versatile, and the addition of a short-range teleport with Misty Step at 5th level is something that many classes would be jealous of. Still, for a more focused build, the Oath of Vengeance is a powerhouse choice.

For more info, find out the best Baldur's Gate 3 Paladin build here.


Baldur's Gate 3 ranger class

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  • Tier ranking: C
  • Class type: Utility attacker who specialises in certain approaches
  • Primary Attributes: Dexterity, Wisdom
  • Secondary Attributes: Constitution, Strength
    • Pros: High health, some variation in builds
    • Cons: Not exceptional at anything

Rangers aren't phenomenal because while they have a range of abilities to choose from - things like a Favoured Enemy, Natural Explorer and Fighting Style - they're all mostly a lot of small, occasionally fun gimmicks that don't really rock the boat or stand out. Dexterity is your bread and butter here, as the pool of spells you unlock at level 2 is small and quite situational, making them a bonus to your class rather than an integral part of it. You should probably check out how to dual wield in Baldur's Gate 3, as it's a classic build for Rangers.

Best Ranger subclass: Beastmaster. If nothing else, it's more fun having animals follow you around than just getting bonuses on certain enemies with the Hunter subclass. The frequency with which you can summon beasts them makes it pretty potent, especially compared to the rest of the class. 


Baldur's Gate 3 rogue class

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  • Tier ranking: B
  • Class type: A skills-and-stealth sneaker who does high-damage targeted strikes
  • Primary Attributes: Dexterity
  • Secondary Attributes: Intelligence, Wisdom, Charisma
    • Pros: Lot of skills, high mobility, sneak attack hits often
    • Cons: Risky and somewhat situational

Rogues are tricky because they're really good until they're really not (and weaker than rogues in 5e). Their high mobility is good, using Cunning Action to dash about at speed, but their sneak attack isn't as deadly as it used to be, and failing to kill means you'll have your low-health, low-armor assassin suddenly in peril. Plus, while all those skills are nice, rogues are designed to scout ahead, which is always a risky thing - we all know the perils of splitting the party.

Best Rogue subclass: Thief. The Rogue's "Fast Hands" power unlocked by being a Thief means you get an extra bonus action every turn. And considering how much Rogues can get from bonus actions, that's pretty ridiculous as a perk.


Baldur's Gate 3 sorcerer class

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  • Tier ranking: A
  • Class type: A glass-cannon spellcaster focused on high damage and spell modification
  • Primary Attributes: Charisma
  • Secondary Attributes: Constitution, Dexterity
    • Pros: Massive damage output, spell metamagic can be very helpful, charisma is a good stat to build around
    • Cons: No defences, no weapon skills

The Sorcerer gains power from an inherited bloodline, which makes them more focused and less versatile than their cousin class, the Wizard. Having your spells derive from Charisma is great, as it means you can also pull dual-roles as the group's "Face". The ability to modify your spells with Metamagic also means you can gain more from the spells you have. However, the obvious failing is that with no armor and low health you're about as tough as a breadstick - and you also can't use any but the most basic weapons on offer, and not especially well.

Best Sorcerer subclass: Draconic Bloodline. Wild Magic is arguably more fun, but it's far too chaotic to be reliable, as the random effects can play against you as much as for you. Draconic Bloodline spikes your survivability, granting you a better armor class and health score, as well as some extra bonuses depending on the type of dragon you choose (we recommend either White or Red).


Baldur's Gate 3 warlock class

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  • Tier ranking: A
  • Class type: A versatile spellcaster with tricks for any situation
  • Primary Attributes: Charisma
  • Secondary Attributes: Constitution, Dexterity
    • Pros: A bag of tricks who can play to any situation, short rest refreshes
    • Cons: Master of none, often runs low on spell slots

The Warlock is a magical counterpart to the Rogue; a class with something for any situation, but lacking any real speciality. They've got medium armor, medium health, medium weapon capabilities, medium spells (though a diverse range to pick from), and while you have less spell slots than most, they refresh on a short rest rather than a long one. Plus, as before, being a charisma spellcaster means you can also be a good negotiator, which is always worth having. Choose a few fun Invocations and you'll have a solid character who can thrive on their own as much as in the group.

Best Warlock subclass: The Fiend. There's no real choice here, as the alternate option - the Great Old One - just isn't finished yet at time of writing, with some key powers missing prior to final release. But the Fiend is good in their own right, the main attraction being the ability to drain temporary HP from targets you kill. That's pretty sweet, and helps a lot with the Warlock's lower survivability.


Baldur's Gate 3 wizard class

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  • Tier ranking: A
  • Class type: A pure spellcaster who can learn additional spells along the way.
  • Primary Attributes: Intelligence
  • Secondary Attributes: Constitution, Dexterity
    • Pros: Flexible damage dealer who rarely runs out of magic
    • Cons: When you DO run out of magic, you're in trouble. Plus you're squishy

The Wizard is to magic what the Fighter is to equipment - a blank check to do almost anything magical bar healing. Wizards are glass cannons like the Sorcerers, but where Sorcerers are focused on particular spell types, Wizards are far more versatile, with a bigger spell list and Arcane Recovery that allows Spell Slot regeneration. Plus, they can learn new spells permanently by spending 50gp over a spell scroll - a huge bonus that the game doesn't play up enough.

Best Wizard subclass: School of Evocation. Neither school is great right now and it's hard to pick one as being wholly better - but considering the School of Evocation means you can blow up fireballs without roasting allies, that can be a lifesaver in certain circumstances, allowing you to go full-on with the AOE attacks. The regenerating shield from the Abjuration school isn't bad, but a 3HP max isn't good enough to take the lead.

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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.

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