Feel like playing as Aang from The Last Airbender and not relying on teammates for elemental buffs? Well, that Monk class in Baldur’s Gate 3 is perfect for you in that case. With a host of elemental abilities covering fire, water/ice, thunder and wind, monks in BG3 can be considered the most ideal melee class with a nice balance of damage and mobility. However, a lot of that relies on your Baldur’s Gate 3 Monk Way of the Four Elements build which is what we are here to perfect.
While there are other viable monk builds in BG3, the one we are focusing on is the elemental monk in the form of the Way of the Four Elements subclass.
Starting abilities and skills for Monk Way of the Four Elements
A lot of things in your build are changeable and not written in stone. After all, what’s the point if you aren’t roleplaying your character how you want? That being said, below are my recommendations and picks for how I rolled my Monk character for 91 hours of BG3
Race: Elf-Wood Elf. Picking this race provides a bonus to speed and Monk is all about that. Alternatively, you can also pick Drow for stealth.
Ability Point distribution: 14 STR, 17 DEX, 15 CON, 11 WIS. Leave the rest at default
Skills: Acrobatics, Athletics, Sleight of Hand, Perception, Stealth/Survival
While your intended roleplaying plays a part in what background you choose, Urchin or Outlander are good picks for our Monk build during character creation. Both backgrounds come with skills that gain benefit from your Dexterity stat. If you are interested in some stealthy gameplay, pick Urchin. Otherwise, Outlander will also work fine as they both provide you Sleight of Hand which comes in handy when lockpicking.
If you plan on having Astarion in your party, you can ignore the above suggestions and go with Entertainer to gain Acrobatics. That is another DEX skill that will improve your saving throws against being knocked down or slipping.
Best Feats for Monk Way of the Four Elements build
Your character can select one feat every four levels. Below is our recommendation for the best Monk feats and when to select them as you level up your monk in BG3
Level 4: Ability Improvement. This way your Dexterity will increase to 19 very early on in the game and benefit you greatly as DEX is a Monk’s main stat.
Level 8: Martial Adept. Pick Riposte and Disarming Attack. Riposte allows you to counter free of cost if an enemy misses their attack while Disarming Attack will cause them to drop their weapon, thus reducing incoming damage.
Level 12: Resilient – Increase strength by +1
Best Spells for Monk Way of the Four Elements build
Since we are going with an elemental monk, our aim is to collect as many elemental attacks as quickly as possible. You can start selecting these spells from level 3 onwards. We are going to aim for attack spells instead of crowd control to maximize the damage with our build
Level 3: Pick Fang of the Fire Snake, Blade of Rime, Water Whip. Water Whip is a dual attack that can pull enemies from ranged positions or knock them prone. Fang of the Fire Snake will allow you to set your weapon ablaze and deal extra fire damage with each Main hand attack while Blade of Rime works best on surfaces where you can create a sheet of ice to trip enemies.
Level 6: Embrace of the Inferno. It will allow you to shoot 3 fireballs at your enemies
Level 9: Gong of the Summit. An AoE thunder attack that is most effective against inorganic enemies.
Level 11: Flames of the Phoenix.
A late-game skill and only useful if you are unlocking a lot of BG3 Illithid Powers, Cull the Weak is also a good addition to your build. If an enemy drops down to health less than the points you have spent on your Illithid Powers, they instantly die and deal AoE psionic damage to nearby enemies.
Best armor and weapons
Helm: Horns of the Berserker – Gain +2 attack roll when dealing damage to enemies not at full health
Back: Cloak of Protection
Armor: Elven Chain. You don’t need any proficiency for this and end up gaining +2 bonus to Initiative and Advantage DEX Saving Throws.
Hands: Gloves of Soul Catching – unarmed attacks like Flurry of Blows deal extra Force damage. Also allows you to regain health per turn or gain advantage on attack rolls.
Amulet: Amulet of Greater Health – Increases Con to 23 and this extra health is useful when you are a melee attacker with weak AC.
Melee weapon: Blood of Lathander – Neaby fiends and undead are blinded. Considering how frequently you will fight such enemies in Acts 2 and 3, the legendary Blood of Lathander is a useful weapon to have.
Rings: Ring of Protection and Ring of Fire.
Baldur’s Gate 3 Monk Way of the Four Elements build level progression
For the most part, your progression as you level up your Way of the Four Elements Monk in BG3 remains fixed. Players aren’t given too much choice when it comes to unlocking things whenever they level up. The actual unlocking options only happen at levels 3, 4, 6, 8, 9 and 12.
However, we are still going to give you an insight into what Monk class features are unlocked at each level and how the Baldur’s Gate 3 Monk Way of the Four Elements build changes the things that are unlocked.
Level 1: Flurry of Blows class action. This is going to be one of your major attacks throughout the game. On top of that, you will also unlock Ki Point class feature, Martial Arts and Unarmored Defense which scales with Wisdom to give bonus AC when you are wearing clothing.
Level 2: Gain an additional Ki point. Step of the Wind: Dash and Disengage are unlocked. Patient Defense provides an advantage on DEX Saving Throws and enemy attack rolls have a disadvantage.
Level 3: Harmony of Fire and Water class action is unlocked. You can use this to regain half your Ki points when outside combat. On top of this, you also get an option to unlock 3 spells. I have mentioned the recommended ones above which I unlocked for my build.
Level 4: Slow Fall and a new Feat is unlocked.
Level 5: As a class feature, an Extra Attack is unlocked allowing you to hit enemies twice within the same turn.
Level 6: Unlock a new spell slot. My recommendation for what to unlock at level 6 is mentioned above.
Level 7: You unlock the Stillness of Mind class feature. Whenever you are Charmed or Frightened, Stillness of Mindness will be automatically cast to remove that debuff.
Level 8: Unlock the next Feat I recommended in the Feats section above.
Level 9: Unlock a new spell slot to pick our recommendation for the BG3 Way of the Four Elements Monk
Level 10: Purity of Body class feature is unlocked. This makes you immune to all forms of Poison.
Level 11: Pick the last spell for your BG3 monk build. My recommendation is to go for Flames of the Phoenix.
Level 12: This is the level cap in Baldur’s Gate 3. You will get the option to unlock your last Feat. My recommendation for which Feat to pick is mentioned above.