A Cantrip in Baldur’s Gate 3 is a spell that the caster has repeated so many times that it has become second nature to them. These require neither spell slots nor any preparation before usage. These are relatively low-level manifestations of magic. So you only need an action to use them.
If your character is running low on spell slots, then cantrips can be the ultimate solution, allowing you to remain on the offensive. They aren’t that special regarding damage or protective ability, but they get the job done when needed.
Best Cantrips for Bard
The Bard class brings out magic through their musical instruments and vocals. They are very good at persuading opponents and allies and perform best as a support class for the party. The Jack-of-all-trades and master of none, Bards are quite the favorites of many players who want to experiment. They have spells that range from damage-dealing to utility.
Although a Bard’s most important maneuver isn’t cantrips, they can choose from a handful of these lowly spells for use in and out of combat scenarios.
Vicious Mockery is a Bard-exclusive cantrip belonging to the School of Enchantment. It is a powerful unique spell that allows you to unleash cutting insults and taunts upon your targets. This deals psychic damage and imposes a disadvantage on their next attack. The psychic damage represents the emotional harm and becomes more potent as you level up.
Vicious mockery has a casting range of 60 feet and requires the caster to be within the hearing range to be effective.
Another special illusionary spell that allows the caster to create an invisible hand out of nowhere. This hand can be used to manipulate objects or interact with them up to a range of 18 meters. It is often the first cantrip you may want to pick as a Bard because it is easy to use and doesn’t require an expert-level skill to understand.
This cantrip can be a good alternative to Minor Illusion, and you can skip through that one straight to choose this as your utility spell.
Friends is another useful cantrip originating from the Enchantment School of Magic. With this spell, you influence someone who isn’t hostile to you to become a little more friendly, giving you an Advantage on Charisma or Persuasion-based checks with the target.
The only downside of using this spell is that you’ll only have one minute to use it. Then, that person will know that you have magically influenced them and can react accordingly.
Prestidigitation can be a difficult word to pronounce, but the effects it provides are a lot more versatile than the name. It is more like a party trick, giving you several different effects to make something dirty, clean, make noises, or produce small illusionary effects. You can even heat and cool food when needed and add some flavoring.
Bards are showmen and want to be the center of attention in their party. So, this spell can be the one to let them achieve this role.
Best Cantrips for Cleric
Clerics are divine spell casters who gain power from the gods they worship or other divine sources. They are more than party healers and can provide some of the best support builds in Baldur’s Gate 3. As a Cleric, you will acquire three cantrips at level 1 after character creation and then proceed to gain additional potent ones as you progress your gameplay.
This cantrip allows you to touch a willing creature and give them a buff that allows them to add a 1d4 to any ability check of their choice. This effect remains for the next whole minute. What’s good about this cantrip is that many ability checks are usually done outside combat. The spell being a cantrip means you can use it for an unlimited amount of times.
So, if you need to make any skill check outside of combat and have someone in your party with Guidance, you always have that additional d4 bonus to that ability check.
This cantrip is a ranged attack spell that deals 1d6 damage to the targets upon hit. This damage may seem trivial, but it also pulls them 10 feet toward you. You can use it if a creature is flying and you want to bring it closer, or you might want to pull a target to your melee range. Maybe you have a Spike Growth at the ground and want enemies to feel that piercing damage from walking on these spikes.
Produce Flame is like holding a concentration-free heatless torch in your hand. It simply deals 1d8 Fire damage to the hit targets and lasts until the next Long Rest. This cantrip costs you an action to cast and then another action to toss it. However, if you throw the flame immediately after conjuring, it won’t cost in this turn.
Thaumaturgy is a role-playing spell from the School of Transmutation. It will give you an advantage on Intimidation and Performance checks lasting ten turns. It is better than the Friends cantrip, as there’s no hostility triggered after you have used this spell.
Best Cantrips for Druid
Druids get a decent number of spells in their cantrips list with an interesting amount of exclusive options to choose from in combat and other scenarios. Many of their spells focus on crowd control, disabling the enemy, and inflicting debuffs on them.
Since a Druid’s magic is drawn upon his devotion and attunement to nature, Wisdom is the primary spell-casting ability for their spells. Below are the best Druids Cantrips in Baldur’s Gate 3.
Shillelagh is a cantrip from the School of Transmutation exclusive to Druids only. It magically empowers a wooden club or quarterstaff, transforming it into a potent magical weapon for the spell’s duration. Your weapon’s damage type changes to magical bludgeoning, granting you the ability to bypass resistances and allowing you to perform attack rolls through spell casting.
Shillelagh requires the caster to touch the weapon as they start invoking the spell to make it work. The newly formed magical weapon attacks use the caster’s spellcasting modifier, such as Wisdom, instead of the usual Strength or Dexterity modifier.
Thorn Whip is a School of Transmutation cantrip. Upon casting this spell, you throw a thorn rod at a target within 9 meters radius. If hit successfully, you will deal 1d6 slashing damage and pull the target 3 meters closer to you.
Don’t focus on the direct damage; it is not that great. Focus on the potential of this spell. Create a Spike Growth, drag the target in, and teach them a painful spiky lesson.
Animal Friendship is an interesting cantrip from the Enchantment School. In this spell, you choose an animal of your liking that has three or lower Intelligence. The animal will be Charmed once it knows you mean no harm. The cantrip’s effect will vanish if you or your allies harm the beast in this duration.
Cure Wound is a versatile spell acquired by many classes, including Druids. The effect of this spell is that when you touch a living creature, you will give them a 1d8+ your Spellcasting modifier hit points in a 5m range. Note that this spell doesn’t work on undead or constructs in any way.
Best Cantrips for Sorcerer
Sorcerers start their gameplay with four Cantrips and eventually gain up to 13 via leveling. This makes it the class with the most low-level spells in BG3. This also means that Sorcerers have a lot of choices when selecting cantrips for their characters. They can distribute some of these to damage-dealing aspects and others to utility.
Mage Hand is essentially a utility cantrip available to Sorcerers (as well as some other classes). It conjures a spectral hand at will, which is an unseen and immaterial extension of the caster’s hand. This allows you to manipulate and interact with objects, such as opening doors and picking up items. It lasts ten turns before dissipating.
Acid Splash is a ranged cantrip from the Conjuration School of Magic. This spell triggers a Dexterity Saving throw from your target. Any available targets within an 18m radius receive 1d6 damage from a successful hit.
Blade Ward is another useful cantrip used by Sorcerers and a few other classes. It is a self-targeting defensive buff that will resist incoming bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage until the end of your next turn. It costs an action, so you will be doing no damage in this round.
Shocking Grasp is a melee attack-roll cantrip from the School of Evocation. If you succeed, it deals a 1d8 Lightning damage and robs your target of their reaction for the next turn. You can give yourself an Advantage on this attack if your opponent is wearing metal armor.
Best Cantrips for Warlock
The Warlock class is full of mysterious and powerful spell casters who have made a pact with a powerful being, such as a demon or a devil. They gain demonic magical powers from their patrons at the cost of their own selves. Warlocks are known for their versatility and flexibility and primarily rely on Eldritch Blast cantrip to deal consistent damage from a distance.
Regarding damage-dealing cantrips in Baldur’s Gate 3, Eldritch Blast tops the list in all aspects. Exclusive to the Warlock class, this spell belongs to the Evocation School of Magic. When cast, it deals 1d10 Force damage, which is by far the least resistant type of damage in the game. It has a 120 ft. range, just like most of the long-range spells out there.
Bone Chill is a powerful cantrip belonging to the School of Necromancy. It does 1d8 necrotic damage upon casting and stops the target creatures from healing until your next turn. It has a ruthless effect on enemies, imposing a Disadvantage on them on their Attack rolls.
Misty Step is another useful cantrip for Warlocks, originating from the School of Conjuration. It allows you to teleport out of a grappled situation where enemies surround you from everywhere. This teleportation can be upwards in the air, below a ravine, or anywhere your eyes can see.
This visually cool-looking cantrip comes from the Divination School of Magic. After casting this spell at a ranged target, you will gain an Advantage on your first attack roll in the next turn against the target, provided that this spell hasn’t ended.
Best Cantrips for Wizard
Wizard class in BG3 has access to numerous magical spells, allowing you to burn, blast, and break apart foes in seconds. The spell casters from this class are among the top options for beginners due to their ease of use in combat.
The Evocation subclass of Wizards gets more damaging spells, preventing them from hurting party members. That’s why all of our cantrips in this section belong to the Evocation School of Magic. These are some of the best Wizard Cantrips in Baldur’s Gate 3.
Imagine you are walking a path having darkness all around. A spell that can create light is more than ideal in such a situation. Many other cantrips create light, but none of them comes closer to the effectiveness of this spell. Light cantrip also comes in handy for things like searching rooms, crossing doors, and stuff where Dark Vision cannot help.
Fire Bolt is an Evocation cantrip triggered by the caster’s magical gestures or words of Arcane. With this spell, you throw a mote (small ball of) fire on a creature or object within a 120 feet range. Upon hit, the target will receive 1d10 Fire damage and take no damage on a missed ball shot.
It has a casting time of one action, which means you can cast a bonus action spell if it is available, but you cannot attack that round.
Dancing Lights is a cantrip from the Evocation School of Magic, exclusive to the High Elf subclass of Wizards. It is a non-combat spell having a normal range of effect (9m radius). It is a good substitute for a torch and can be split into four small lights or a vaguely humanoid form of medium size.
Dancing Lights can be a distraction and illumination, especially in the Underdark. However, if you need stealth, it is better to go for the simple Light cantrip instead of this one.
Ray of Frost
Ray of Frost is a damage-dealing spell from the School of Evocation. Upon casting this, a frigid beam of blue light strikes a creature within range. If the target is hit, it takes 1d8 cold damage, and its speed is reduced by 3 meters until the end of your next turn.
Wizards and Sorcerers acquire this cantrip right off the bat with character creation. However, High Elves can learn this spell due to their racial background.