How Skill Proficiency Works In Baldur’s Gate 3

Skill proficiency in Baldur's Gate 3 grants you a small bonus to a certain skill. This can help you out both in and out of combat. It is important to know how this works.

Having proficiency in a skill means that the character has a bonus to checks made related to it in Baldur’s Gate 3. Whenever the game has you roll for a check, you will receive a small bonus, which lowers the required number you must achieve with your rolls. For example, a character who is proficient in Arcana will receive a bonus when the game has a roll to determine an object’s magical property. 

This can further be explained with another example. If you are playing as a Barbarian class, you will have Strength ability as your main ability modifier. Any skills associated with Strength, like Athletics, will become instantly available, and you will become proficient in them. The same goes for the rest of the abilities and their skills. 

In BG3, your skill proficiency bonus is added to your rolls. So, you will get a + or a – every time you roll. Skill Proficiency bonus begins with a +2 and then +1 with every four levels to a maximum of +4. These modifiers will automatically add to your rolls every single time. You can also increase your skill proficiency bonus by increasing the ability it is associated with using the ability points every four levels.

Do Skill Proficiencies Stack in Baldur’s Gate 3?

Before proceeding further, we want to make it clear that skill proficiencies don’t stack in Baldur’s Gate 3. When selecting your background, you get a chance to select two more skills in addition to your default ones from the class. If you get Acrobat skills from both your Class and the Background, their bonuses won’t add up. You will only get the base value of skill proficiency added to your dice roll.

What skill proficiencies to pick for every class in Baldur’s Gate 3

Being proficient in a skill will give you a bonus on your dice rolls in a particular skill. For instance, you are playing as a Barbarian. This means that you will be proficient in your strength. So, you will deal bonus damage every time you use a melee attack. 

These proficiencies make your characters overpowered and dominate combat. But you must pick them up accordingly. If not, then you will have wasted a potential bonus. You will be underpowered and struggle to perform your role in the party composition

There are different skill proficiencies available in Baldur’s Gate 3 to pick from. You can pick them based on the build you are going for. 

Skill Ability Dependency Classes for the Skill Backgrounds Bonuses 
Acrobatics Dexterity Rogue, Ranger, Monk, Bard, Fighter Outlander, Entertainer Jump bonus and land safely. Traverse the slippery terrains easily. Keep your balance on a tightrope. Don’t lose your balance in tricky situations. 
Animal Handling Wisdom Fighter, Barbarian, Bard, Druid, Ranger Folk Hero. Allows you to calm down animals and understand them better. 
Arcana Intelligence Bard, Druid, Sorcerer, Warlock, Wizard Sage You can easily understand Artifacts and Enchanted items. Better interaction with Astral Planes and the creatures inhabiting them. More insight into magic symbols and their lore. 
Athletics Strength Fighter, Barbarian, Bard, Monk, Paladin, Ranger, Rogue Outlander, Sailor Can easily pass dangerous areas. Allows you to cover long distances while jumping. Keeps you steady while climbing and ignores the distractions. 
Deception Charisma Bard, Rogue, Sorcerer, Warlock Charlatan, Criminal Allows you to disguise yourself and loot any merchants. You become a skilled gambler and can lie your way through difficult situations. 
History Intelligence Bard, Monk, Warlock, Wizard, Fighter, Cleric Sage, Noble You can now understand Artifacts and legendary items. Knows all about historical events and old heroes. 
Insight Wisdom Fighter, Bard, Cleric, Druid, Ranger, Monk, Paladin, Sorcerer, Rogue, Warlock Guild Artisan, Acolyte You can understand people’s body language and can catch anyone during a lie. You become proficient in determining people’s next moves. 
Intimidation Charisma Fighter, Paladin, Rogue, Bard, Barbarian, Sorcerer, Warlock Soldier Allows you to threaten other creatures and win via aggression. 
Investigation Intelligence Bard, warlock, Wizard, Ranger, Rogue – Allows you to find hidden paths and determine if it is safe to traverse. 
Medicine Wisdom Bard, Druid, Cleric, Paladin, Wizard Hermit Allows you to heal any companion and save them from dying. You also gain knowledge of diseases and how to cure them. 
Nature Intelligence Bard, druid, Barbarian, Warlock, Ranger – You gain knowledge of weather, flora, and fauna. All difficult terrains are now easy to traverse. 
Perception Wisdom Fighter, Bard, Druid, Ranger, Rogue, Barbarian Sailor Allows you to locate traps and hidden treasures. You can now listen to others through the doors and get enhanced senses. 
Performance Charisma Bard, Rogue, Warlock Entertainer Use your silver tongue to charm the crowd. You are now proficient in music, dance, and storytelling. 
Persuasion Charisma Bard, Cleric, Sorcerer, Rogue, Paladin Noble, Guild Artisan You can positively inspire people and win negotiations. People admire your friendly demeanor and are eager to join your party. 
Religion Intelligence Sorcerer, Paladin, Warlock, Monk, Wizard, Bard, Druid, Cleric Hermit, Acolyte You have an in-depth understanding of cults and deities. You understand religious symbols and hierarchies. 
Sleight of Hand Dexterity Bard, Rogue Charlatan, Urchin You can pickpocket people and disarm traps. You are proficient in picking locks, tricking people, and stealing. 
Stealth Dexterity Rogue, Bard, Ranger, Monk Criminal, Urchin You can sneak past creatures and are a master of concealing your presence. 
Survival Wisdom Druid, Bard, Fighter, Ranger, Barbarian Folk Hero You can track the creatures and hunt them down. Difficult terrains pose no threat to you. 

Skill proficiency vs Weapons and Armor proficiency explained

While Baldur’s Gate 3 uses the same term, proficiency, with Skills, Armor, and Weapons, there is a major difference among them. Skill Proficiency allows you to add bonuses to your dice rolls (inside or outside combat) depending on what class or background you are using. It also reflects how many ability points you have invested in your main ability. 

Whereas Weapons and Armor proficiencies refer to your expertise in wielding them. Being proficient in Heavy Armor doesn’t add any bonuses, but it allows you to wear any armor from the heavy category without any penalty. The same goes for the weapons. If you are proficient with Martial Weapons, you can wield any weapon from the category and get all the bonuses associated with the weapon.

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Ali is a passionate RPG gamer. He believes that western RPGs still have a lot to learn from JRPGs. He is editor-in-chief at but that doesn't stop him from writing about his favorite video ...