Updated: December 6, 2023
This build is current to patch 5.
When it comes to dealing damage in Baldur’s Gate 3, few can dish it out with more mayhem than the wizard. While definitely on the squishier side of potential playable classes, the wizard makes up for it with a fun and varied skill set that can often use the environment to its advantage.
But if you’re new to BG3, there are lots of tricky character creation decisions to make, such as which stats and subclass to choose, which is why I’ve put together this wizard build guide.
Best Wizard Build in Baldur's Gate 3
Wizards such as Gale rely on brains rather than brawn to get the job done, wielding powerful spells from the backline to both damage and hamper opponents. They’re also useful in conversation, where their high Intelligence can grant you extra knowledge, or help answer difficult questions in tricky situations. The best wizards have high Intelligence, big AOE spells, and a few tricks to get you out of trouble.
Best Stats and Race for Wizard in Baldur's Gate 3
As mentioned above, your key ability is Intelligence, so make sure you give this your +2 bonus and get it up to 17. Doing so will give you +3 on your Intelligence checks, which will greatly improve your spell-casting abilities. Dexterity and Constitution are helpful for staying alive, and so should be your next priorities.
- Strength: 8
- Dexterity: 14
- Constitution: 15
- Intelligence: 17
- Wisdom: 10
- Charisma: 10
I’m not usually a fan of letting an ability score stat go below 10, as that incurs a minus to saving throws for that stat, but I make an exception with wizards and Strength. If your wizard is having to rely on a Strength saving throw, something has likely gone horribly wrong!
In terms of race choice, feel free to take whichever you feel comfortable with, but if you want to min-max, go with either Elf or Half-Elf. Not only will you get night vision, you’ll benefit from an extra Cantrip.
Best Subclass for Wizard in Baldur's Gate 3
As a wizard, you’ll have a dizzying array of eight subclasses to choose from when you get to level 2. Each will offer similar spell choices as other subclasses, but you’ll gain specific features that make yours unique. Again, you may want to choose a different one than I suggest, so here’s a brief rundown of each option:
- Abjuration: Gain an Arcane Ward that gives you some added protection.
- Evocation: When you cast Evocation spells, your party is immune from any fallout.
- Necromancy: Can regain HP after killing creatures with spells.
- Conjuration: You have a permanent ability to conjure water.
- Enchantment: You have Hypnotic Gaze as a class feature, which can Charm and Incapacitate a create.
- Divination: Some Saving Throw bonuses.
- Illusion: You have a permanent and advanced version of Minor Illusion.
- Transmutation: Make bonus potions when creating them via alchemy.
While I quite like the ability to Conjure Water at will, knowing you’re not going to take your companions out when you cast an AOE attack is worth its weight in gold, making the Evocation subclass the clear favorite for me. All wizards get a discount to learn their own subclass of spells from scrolls too, which is another bonus for Evocation Wizards, as their school has some of the most-used spells in the class.
Best Feats for Wizard in Baldur's Gate 3
You’ll gain your first feat at level four, from a massive list of 50 or so options. There is one OP option here: the Ability Improvement feat, which gives you two extra ability points. A fantastic advantage at this level, it allows you to push Intelligence up to 18 and Constitution to 16, giving you an extra +1 on spellcasting, HP, and saves on both stats for the rest of the game. You’ll get another feat point at level eight, which allows you to push your Intelligence to the maximum level (20).
Best Cantrips for Wizard in Baldur's Gate 3
Fire Bolt and Ray of Frost are great starting cantrips. They give you a great range (both 18m), and either one or the other (usually both) is going to damage most enemies. Plus, they have extra utility in being able to affect surfaces such as water or oil, giving you options to deal extra damage or slow down enemies. Mage Hand can be useful, creating a magic hand to interact with objects, while Shocking Grasp is a handy defense if an enemy gets within melee range.
Best Spells for Wizard in Baldur's Gate 3
Spell choices are a very personal thing, and can be mitigated with scrolls, but these are the ones from the earlier levels I wouldn't miss out on:
- Magic Missile (level 1): The spell that never misses, Magic Missile is the ultimate finisher. It does 3d4+3 Force damage, making it a guaranteed kill for most creatures on six or fewer HP.
- Chromatic Orb (level 1): This is the perfect foil for Magic Missile, as you can amend its damage type depending on the situation, making it your offensive Swiss army knife.
- Scorching Ray (level 2): Rounding out the trinity of damage spells, the ray gives you a choice in where you deal your damage. You'll get three rays per cast, each doing 2d6 damage, which you can concentrate on any combination of enemies.
- Misty Step (level 2): Staying alive becomes a lot easier with Misty Step, which is essentially a teleport spell. move instantly to anywhere you can see within an 18m radius.
- Hold Person (level 2): While this only works on humanoid enemies, it's devastating when it lands. not only is the opponent held, but all hits on the become crits and they can't act at all.
- Haste (level 3): Make your damage dealer your BFF as you give them increased movement, an extra action per turn, plus +2AC, making them a mobile and impenetrable killing machine.
- Web (level 3): Creates an AoE of web causing enemies to become stuck. Unlike Grease, Web does not knock enemies prone, meaning you can strike them easily from range. (Patch 3 fixed how AoE saves work, now using your character's Spell Save DC.)
- Counterspell (level 3): Counterspell is a must for Wizards, as it allows them to counter enemy spellcasters. Negating an enemy spell can make or break a combat.
- Fireball (level 3): Fireball is easily one of the most powerful spells at this level, and it a must for Wizards looking to deal serious damage.
- Confusion (level 4): Confusing your enemies and watching the chaos ensue is always a blast. Whether they attack an ally or skip their turn, Confusion is a powerful spell.
For more information on everything Baldur's Gate 3, why not also check out BG3 Tempest Cleric Sorcerer Build Guide – Best Stats and Spells or What to Expect From Doing The Dark Urge in Baldur’s Gate 3 here at Pro Game Guides!