Stats, or abilities as Baldur’s Gate 3 refers to them, are the core attributes of your character that determine every action you take in the game. From damage to proficiencies to skill checks, everything in BG3 is controlled by ability scores. There are six different abilities to customize your build, and given the massive free-choice structure of the game, it can be difficult to figure out which ability is right for you.
Lucky for you, we have a complete breakdown of all abilities in Baldur’s Gate 3 and will help explain how each ability works and how you can improve those ability scores.
These ability scores in BG3 can range from 8 to 15 during character creation, depending on how you want to customize your character. You basically have to distribute 27 ability points between the six available abilities
Each of these abilities each have a unique set of skills that determine their use in the game. These skills give the idea of how the player can use each ability. You don’t need to have all of these abilities with high scores, as you can focus on the ones you feel would assist in your gameplay.
Types of Abilities in Baldur’s Gate 3
There are a total of six types of abilities that are listed when a character or class is chosen.
Primary Stat for Barbarian, Fighter, and Paladin. Strength only impacts one skill: Athletics. With a high enough Athletic skill, you will be able to perform tasks that require physical work like jumping distance, shoving enemies, and more.
Strength ability, as the name suggests, is a damage-based ability that focuses on your attacks. The Strength-based weapons, most melee weapons, are most affected if this ability has a higher score, as it affects how hard of a hit you can land.
This ability basically aids the most in strength-related tasks that want you to use physical power e.g., breaking doors, lifting heavy items or characters, dealing high damage, etc.
Primary Stat for Rogue and Ranger.
- Acrobatics: Keep character upright during tricky situations like walking across a tightrope.
- Sleight of Hand: Easier for tricking anyone.
- Stealth: Helps in sneaking past or up to someone.
Dexterity is a speed and agility-based ability that can help you land a hit with a dexterity-based weapon along with a fair chance of defending. This helps in combat with enemies that rely on heavy attacks. The fast reflexes, coordination, and dodging traps are a great help, too. Also, it is quite helpful as it can help in lockpicking, hiding, and other agility-based skills.
Dexterity score does not only give you speed but also adds to the armor class in BG3, so you have a good defense setup. Having a high dexterity score can also lead to Initiative bonuses. With a high initiative, you will be able to attack before most enemies and quite possibly even kill them before finishing your turn.
Primary Stat for Barbarians
Constitution is the simplest ability to understand in Baldur’s Gate 3. It directly controls your survivability by determining your character’s health. The higher your constitution, the more HP you will have. On top of that, having a high Constitution also adds an ability score bonus to Constitution Saving Throws.
Primary Stat for Wizards
- Arcane: Ability to recall lore about anything related to spells, magic, and scrolls.
- History: Ability to recall lore about anything from history.
- Investigation: Help in making deductions for hidden items, dangerous locations, or even the weapon from a wound, all from a clue.
- Nature: Ability to recall lore about an area, plants, and animals.
- Religion: Ability to recall lore about prayers, rules, deities, and practices related to religions.
If you want to play a calm and intellectual game with fewer fights and more understanding, this ability might be for you. Intelligence works best for Wizards, which makes it a good stat for magic-based gameplay. They use this ability as their spellcasting ability as it deduces the accuracy of the spell.
As its name suggests, the ability is all about knowing, which can range from recalling spells to understanding the lore behind each and everything. This is extremely helpful for Wizards as it allows them to recall spells from new or old spellbooks.
Primary Stat for Cleric and Druid
- Animal Handling: Aids in the handling of any animal.
- Insight: Ability to see if someone is lying and predicting the next move.
- Medicine: Stabilise a dying companion and understand the illness.
- Perception: Detect the presence of someone.
- Survival: Helps in all aspects related to survival. For example, guiding through a wasteland, signing when predators are nearby, predicting harmful weather, etc.
Similar to intelligence, Wisdom is an ability that allows the character to predict and use common sense to understand the situation. Wisdom allows the players to be conscious of their surroundings and the people and creatures in them. Wisdom is best for Clerics, Druid, and sometimes Rangers as it helps them predict the accuracy of their spells.
Being insightful with a high level of wisdom can save you a lot of trouble. With skills like survival, you can skip traps and decide the right way to go about a particular situation. This makes it a very useful ability to have for almost every class.
Primary Stat for Warlock, Sorcerer, and Bard.
- Deception: The skill to hide your lie through your body language and tone.
- Intimidation: Allows you to intimidate others through threats, violence, or other means.
- Performance: Ability to entertain the crowd with dance, acting, music, etc.
- Persuasion: Ability to convince people with tact or social skills. This skill is best used during negotiation.
Charisma is basically the ability to convince others and make them believe you by using your tactics and, of course, charisma. This is more dependent on the character’s personality than any other thing, so it is naturally best for smooth gameplay.
The higher the stat for charisma is, the more likely the intimidation, convincing, and deception will work. These skills are best when you want to get out of a prickly situation, so keeping it high is a good choice nonetheless.
How to increase Ability scores in BG3?
Ability scores can be increased organically by using the points you get after you level up in Baldur’s Gate 3. These points are given after every four levels. Once you cross four levels, you’ll get two points. You can use these points on two abilities of your choice or use both for one.
This method allows you to max out an ability score up to 20. However, you aren’t just limited to 20, as you can still increase your ability beyond that with the help of special items.
Items that increase ability scores
Here are a few items you can equip or use as a consumable to increase your ability score beyond 20 in Baldur’s Gate 3.
|Amulet of Greater Health||Amulet||Set Strength to 23|
|Club of Hill Giant Strength||Weapon (Club)||Set Strength to 19|
|Gauntlets of Hill Giant Strength||Armour (Gloves)||Set Strength to 23|
|The Graceful Cloth||Clothing||+2 Dexterity (20 max)|
|The Mighty Cloth||Clothing||+2 Strength (20 max)|
|Dwarven Splintmail||Armour||+2 Constitution (20 max)|
|Birthright||Clothing||+2 Charisma (22 max)|
|Nimblefinger Gloves||Armour (Gloves)||+2 Dexterity (Gnomes) +1 Dexterity (Dwarves, Halflings)|
|Hag Hair||Consumable||+1 to any ability you choose.|
|Potion of Everlasting Vigour||Consumable||+2 Strength|
How is ability score bonus calculated?
Once you understand how the ability score affects your other aspects, you should learn how they affect your dice rolls and skill checks. As Dungeons and Dragons inspired Baldur’s Gate 3, the dice rolls determine the outcome of every action in the game. This makes them very important, so having a bonus on those dice rolls ensures a favorable outcome.
The ability score bonus just adds or subtracts the number you get on your dice according to the stat you have for a certain ability. For example, if you have the Dexterity stat at 16, you will be able to add +3 to any Dexterity roll you do. However, if you are on an odd number stat, the bonus will not increase, so you need a double stat increase to actually jump to the next bonus stat.