In terms of sheer versatility, few classes in Baldur’s Gate 3 can match what the Paladin brings to the table. You gain access to strong melee attacks, dozens of support spells, and can pass just about check in the entire game. The Paladin’s biggest attributes are its strength and charisma stats, allowing it to deal massive damage and charm their way out of any situation. You can build your Paladin just about any way you want in Baldur’s Gate 3, and that doesn’t even include the multiclassing possibilities. If you’re just looking for a level-by-level build guide for the Paladain, though, you’ve come to the right place.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin Build Guide – Oath of Devotion
For this build, we will be choosing the Oath of Devotion subclass, as it allows you to uphold your oath easier than the other Paladin subclasses. If you’re not aware, Paladin is the only class in Baldur’s Gate 3 that forces you to stick to your backstory, and in this case, it’s your oath. If you break that oath, you will have to either pay to restore it or become an Oathbreaker Paladin, which comes with its own advantages. Becoming an Oathbreaker will give you access to new spells, but these replace your original oath’s spells and do not allow you to respec your character.
Our build will be staying away from both the Oathbreaker subclass and multiclassing, as we want to keep it as simple as possible. With that in mind, we’ll be sticking with the Oath of Devotion.
Paladin Build Summary
Now that we’re set with the Oath of Devotion, we need to determine what our race, subrace, background, Fighting Style, weapons and armor, and Ability Scores will be. You will make some of these decisions after leaving the character creator, but we’ll include all of the details you need to get started on the right foot with your Paladin. We went over these in more detail in our Paladin class guide, but here’s a quick rundown:
- Race/Subrace: Zariel Tiefling
- Background: Soldier for boosts to Athletics and Intimidation so you can be stronger and mobile and pass virtually any dialogue check in the game.
- Fighting Style: Dueling. This will give you a +2 in melee attack damage as long as you are using a one-handed weapon (such as the Blood of Lathander, which goes great with the Paladin’s inherited radiant damage), and a shield in your other hand.
- Weapons and Armor: If you’re using Dueling, then go with a one-handed weapon and a shield. For armor, it’s better to stick with heavy armor to get the most out of the Paladin’s strength stat.
- Ability Scores:
- 16 STR, 10 DEX, 14 CON, 8 INT, 10 WIS, 16 CHA (+2 to STR and +1 to CHA)
Paladin Leveling Progression
- Divine Smite – Deals an additional 1-8 Radiant damage to fiends and undead on melee attacks. You also gain access to new damage reactions when you get hit by an enemy and deliver a critical hit. Access to Prepared Spells – You gain a set number of prepared spells to use in combat or outside of it. You will also gain access to Legacy of Avernus: Searing Smite if you chose Zariel Tiefling. Here are some of the level 1 spells we recommend you target first:
- Compelled Duel
- Wrathful Smite
- Searing Smite
- Divine Favor
- Cure Wounds
- Shield of Faith
- Divine Health – The divine magic flowing within you prevents disease from affecting you.
- Gain an additional Prepared Spell – Some other level 1 spells we recommend are:
- Thunderous Smite
- Turn the Unholy
- Protection from Evil and Good (Oath Spell)
- Sanctuary (Oath Spell)
- Gain an additional Lay on Hands charge (lets you use the healing spell twice before needing to rest)
- Feat – Ability Improvement. This feat gives you the ability to put an additional two points into an ability. Put an extra +2 into Strength.
- Additional Prepared Spell – Pick another spell to use from our recommendations above
- Extra Attack – Can make an additional free attack after making an unarmed or weapon attack.
- Access to Level 2 Spells – You can now access the level 2 spells list and prepare some of those for use alongside your level 1 spells. The only level 2 spells we recommend you prepare are Magic Weapon, which gives you +1 advantage on attack and damage rolls, and Moonbeam, which is a moving spell that deals radiant and fire damage. If your subrace is Zariel Tiefling, then you will also gain access to Legacy of Avernus: Branding Smite, which is always prepared, just like Legacy of Avernus: Searing Smite. This makes the level 2 spell Branding Smite redundant, as the two spells do the same thing.
- Lesser Restoration (Oath Spell)
- Silence (Oath Spell)
- Aura of Protection – You and nearby allies gain a +0 bonus to Saving Throws.
- Access to another Prepared Spell
- Feat – Savage Attacker. Lets you roll your damage dice twice when making melee attacks, and you will choose the highest roll.
- Access to Level 3 Spells – You will gain access to level 3 spells to prepare and one additional prepared slot. Here are some of the spells we recommend from this list:
- Warden of Vitality
- Blinding Smite
- Gain an additional Lay on Hands charge
- Aura of Courage – You and any nearby allies can’t be frightened. The aura disappears if you fall unconscious.
- Improved Divine Smite – Your attacks are suffused with divine might. Melee weapon attacks deal an additional 1-8 Radiant damage.
- Access to an additional prepared spells slot.
- Feat – Athlete. Increase your Strength by one, to a maximum of 20. You stand up using less movement when prone and you can jump an extra 50%.
These are our picks for the Paladin best build in Baldur’s Gate 3. We’ll update our guide soon, so stay tuned.
Baldur’s Gate 3 is filled to the brim with activities and secrets. You’ll no doubt be part of an adventure that can take countless hours to complete. For other tips, you can visit our BG3 guides hub.
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