baldur's gate 3 best spells

Baldur’s Gate 3 Best Spells Ranked: Magic Missile, Healing Word, More

Baldur’s Gate 3 is the ultimate Dungeons & Dragons fantasy RPG video game to play. A huge part of why I love this game is the spells in it.

Though there are a lot of duds and mediocre spells, if you can figure out the Baldur’s Gate 3 best spells, you can become a powerhouse on the battlefield with the ability to cut through enemies, debuff them, and more.

There is so much more you can do with spells, including outside battles, like speaking to animals or boosting your conversation dice roll checks.

The best part is that nearly every class in the game can learn some spells one way or another, even if you are a Fighter, Paladin, or Barbarian. As such, you should carefully consider Baldur’s Gate 3 best spells that will help you out the most.

Bottom Line Up Front

The best spells in Baldur’s Gate 3 are the ones that are flexible and powerful. These are the spells that are easy to use, perhaps even as a bonus action, but still have utility in what they accomplish. Some of these spells are simple damaging spells, while others debuff or even buff.

If I had to pick a single spell in the game that every player should have, it’s Magic Missile. This quintessential damaging spell does everything right. It typically has 100% accuracy across the battlefield, which you usually can’t find, and it deals with multiple hits, which you can spread to different foes.

Selection Criteria

It was a challenge when it came to coming up with the best spells in Baldur’s Gate 3. There are so many spells in this game and many different classes that use certain ones. But I was able to narrow down this list based on the following criteria:

  • Power: Damage, healing potency, and so on. Whatever the purpose of the spell is, it has to do so in a robust manner that outclasses most everything else it is up against.
  • Utility: The type of spell matters a lot, too. While plenty of debuff and buff spells are in the game, most aren’t great. So, there is some priority on more essential types of spells, like damaging and healing ones.
  • Flexibility: It is one thing to deal lots of damage or heal a party member, but it is crucial that the best spells have some versatility. For instance, they work in and out of combat or don’t cost you a full action.
  • Uniqueness: These spells stand out for one reason or another. Plenty of spells deal damage, but what do these spells do differently that should encourage you to use them?

General Spellcasting Tips

Spellcasting can be one of the most nerve-wracking but extraordinarily fun ways to play this game. Here are some of the tips I’ve learned during the 35+ hours I’ve played this game and counting, all as a spellcaster:

  • Stick to the back of the group to not break concentration or have a hybrid multiclass that gives you proficiency in better armor to protect yourself.
  • Speaking of multiclassing, everyone should consider multiclassing with at least one class. If you are a melee character like a Fighter or Barbarian, you should consider doubling up as a mage character like a Cleric, Wizard, or Warlock.
  • You can change your prepared spells in the main menu anytime you are outside of combat. Do this often to experiment and find the best spells for you.
  • You can even change the spells you know when you level up. I do this often, too, because I want to get rid of the spells that aren’t working and focus on the ones that do.
  • You can learn a spell more than once from different classes or sources. This may seem unnecessary, but let’s say you have a spell that you can only use once per short or long rest. If you learn it twice, you can now use it two times per short or long rest, so long as you have the spell slots left. I do this a lot for my favorite spells.
  • Cast Speak With Animals and Find Familiar as soon as you come off of a long rest because it goes away then. It is a semi-permanent spell that sticks with you all day long until your next rest or the familiar dies.
  • Find equipment that can enhance spells. For instance, an amulet in the game boosts your damage, making excellent spells like Magic Missile even better.
  • Remember the difference between a spell and a cantrip. A cantrip can be used anytime without using a spell slot, so think of it like a basic attack in a way. On the other hand, a spell requires an active spell slot to use. Once you’re out of slots, you can no longer use them.

Best Spells in Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranked

I narrowed down the spells in Baldur’s Gate 3 to the ten best ones you should know right now. Many of these can and should be learned by every single party member in your group. This can make your battles much easier and help you defeat those formidable foes. Let’s get started.

10. Fire Bolt

baldur's gate fire bolt
  • Spell or Cantrip: Cantrip
  • Type: Damage
  • Level: 1
  • Classes That Learn: Sorcerer, Wizard, Arcane Tricker (Rogue), Eldritch Knight (Fighter)
  • Races That Learn: High Elf, High Half-Elf

This is the most basic spell you can find in Baldur’s Gate 3, but nothing is wrong with that. Almost anyone can learn this spell, even outside of the classes listed above, by learning a feat that allows the user to learn spells from the Sorcerer or Wizard classes.

It is basically like the magical basic attack since you can use it every turn, and it has decent damage and accuracy. It may not be the most potent spell around, but it is the most flexible since you always have access to it. It should always be your go-to partner unless you are a Warlock.

9. Eldritch Blast

  • Spell or Cantrip: Cantrip
  • Type: Damage
  • Level: 1
  • Classes That Learn: Warlock
  • Races That Learn: None

Eldritch Blast is like Fire Bolt but for the Warlock players out there and anyone who takes the Spell Sniper feat. It is similar to the Fire Bolt cantrip in that it deals the same amount of possible damage, and you can use it every turn like a basic attack for someone like the party member Wyll.

However, where Eldritch Blast gets better is that you can customize it as you level up Warlock. For instance, you can choose to make it hit two times in a row per turn instead of the singular hit that Fire Bolt usually does. This can effectively double its primary damage in a way, depending on the dice lands.

8. Misty Step

  • Spell or Cantrip: Spell
  • Type: Movement
  • Level: 2
  • Classes That Learn: Sorcerer, Warlock, Wizard, Oath of the Ancients Paladin (level 5), Oath of Vengeance Paladin (level 5), Circle of the Land Druid, Gloom Stalker Ranger
  • Races That Learn: Githyanki at level 5

This is a fairly simple but powerful teleportation spell. In the middle of a fight, you can instantly teleport to any location you can see that isn’t currently occupied on the battlefield. This could be next to a foe, away from a foe you just hit, up on a ledge, down the ladder, and so on.

The best part, though, is that this is a bonus action spell. This means that you can still do your standard action, such as swinging a sword or casting Fire Bolt, and then do this afterward on the same turn. This lets you attack someone up close, for instance, and then retreat to a safe distance without getting hit.

7. Speak With Animals

baldur's gate 3 speak with animals
  • Spell or Cantrip: Spell
  • Type: Roleplay
  • Level: 1
  • Classes That Learn: Bard, Druid, Ranger, Warlock (If you pick Beast Speech), Oath of the Ancients Paladin, and Nature Domain Cleric
  • Races That Learn: Forest Gnome

If you are a roleplayer or wish to see almost everything you possibly can on a single playthrough of this game (which still isn’t everything), this spell is a must. With it, you can speak with every animal you come across in the game and understand them.

That squirrel that is fiercely protective of that tree? You can talk to him and kick him off the ledge. That strange ox with a weird backstory that is basically a side quest? You can chat with him and even provoke him to reveal his true nature if you dare.

You should always have at least one party member with access to this spell, preferably the player character, since that will be the person speaking with the animal. This spell opens up a whole new world to you, so it is best to get it early and use it every time you come off of a long rest to get the most use out of it.

6. Scorching Rays

  • Spell or Cantrip: Spell
  • Type: Damage
  • Level: 2
  • Classes That Learn: Sorcerer, Wizard, Light Domain Cleric
  • Races That Learn: None

This is an immensely powerful damaging spell that is similar to Magic Missile (more on it in a bit) in a way. You get to fire off three rays of fire that will deal an impressive two-12 range of fire damage. You can split these up between foes or use them to quickly whittle down the health of a particular enemy all at once.

The added touch of this being fire damage means that it will sear the foes alive, which is an excellent way to finish someone off. It also means it is effective against most enemies, living or even undead. What only holds it back is the limited nature of this spell, given that it is a level two, so it is a slightly more restrictive but powerful version of Magic Missile.

5. Guidance

baldur's gate 3 guidence
  • Spell or Cantrip: Cantrip
  • Type: Buff
  • Level: 1
  • Classes That Learn: Cleric, Druid, Warlock (Level 3 Pact of the Tome)
  • Races That Learn: None

Guidance is essential if you ever plan to roll the dice during a conversation. If you are a player like me who wants to avoid as many fights as possible through persuasion and intimidation, you need Guidance on your team. You can use this during a conversation before rolling the dice.

When you do so, it will grant you a 1-4 bonus on the dice roll. This bonus is random, but you are at least guaranteed to get some boost, so long as you aren’t Bloodless. This can even mean the difference in a dice roll where the requirement is to get 21 or higher, but you only have a single 20-sided dice, which would otherwise be essentially impossible to achieve.

4. Healing Word

  • Spell or Cantrip: Spell
  • Type: Healing
  • Level: 1
  • Classes That Learn: Bard, Cleric, and Druid
  • Races That Learn: None

If there is a single healing spell that should be a requirement for every party, it is Healing Word. In addition, I suggest having this on every single party member, which is possible through feats or multiclassing. At a glance, the up to four possible healing is pretty minimal, but it can increase.

However, that isn’t why Healing Word is so fantastic. For one, it is a bonus action, so you can use it every turn (as long as you have a spell slot) after doing your main action. For instance, you can attack a foe and then heal right after.

But the utility doesn’t stop there. Healing Word doubles as a revive spell for characters that are knocked out but not dead. Usually, it would require you to move over to the character and waste an entire turn to help them up. But Healing Word can be used in addition to your normal move to help the character and do so from far away while also healing them. Put this on every character when you get the chance.

3. Hex

baldur's gate 3 hex
  • Spell or Cantrip: Spell
  • Type: Debuff
  • Level: 1
  • Classes That Learn: Warlock
  • Races That Learn: None

Hex is a game-changer for spellcasters and is almost broken in a way. What it does is curse the target so that it will take conditional necrotic damage of up to six each time most attacks and other spells hit it. This will last until the spell (which is usually after a long rest), or they die.

So, already, this is a spell you can use right off the bat in a fight to make the most out of every attack you do on that target from then on. Better yet, it is a bonus action, so you don’t even have to waste a turn using it. But even then, the utility doesn’t stop there.

If the Hex goes away because the target dies before the spell expires, which more than likely will happen, you can automatically recast it again on someone else for free. This means you pretty much will constantly have Hex on someone and always be dealing extra damage in every battle.

2. Cloud of Daggers

  • Spell or Cantrip: Spell
  • Type: Damage/Crowd Control
  • Level: 2
  • Classes That Learn: Bard, Sorcerer, Warlock, and Wizard
  • Races That Learn: None

If you want to control a crowd and the fate of the battlefield, this spell is a must. If you can get it on two or more party members, even better. How it works is you summon down a cloud full of daggers that is basically like a persistently-damaging tornado that sticks around for a whopping ten turns.

When you initially use it on an enemy, it will immediately damage them and anyone in the surrounding area of the circle. It will also continue to damage them for the full ten turns unless they move out of the circle. In some battlefields, though, it is possible to bottleneck them through a single entrance and hit basically every enemy.

Cloud of Daggers does colossal damage, too, so I have used this before and taken out several weaker foes before they even got to my characters to hit them.

It is also excellent for bosses that have a ton of health to whittle it down much faster, especially if you can apply more than one tornado. Just make sure not to hit your teammates in the process.

Its only downside is, unlike the similar but less useful Moonbeam, you aren’t able to move it without recasting.

1. Magic Missile

baldur's gate 3 magic missile
  • Spell or Cantrip: Spell
  • Type: Damage
  • Level: 1
  • Classes That Learn: Sorcerer, Wizard, Arcane Trickster Rogue, and Eldritch Knight Fighter
  • Races That Learn: None

If there is a single weakness with most of the damage spells on this list, like Fire Bolt and Eldritch Blast, it is the accuracy, which can be pretty poor at times.

Magic Missile doesn’t have that problem, as it always has 100% accuracy unless there is an object in the way. And even when there is an object in the way, it has still worked for me when an opponent is hiding behind a pillar or the like.

But it doesn’t stop with its unstoppable accuracy. It lets you shoot off three missiles at once with the base spell, and you can choose the targets for each one. You can divide it between three weak targets to hopefully dispose of all of them or put them all on a hefty foe to whittle down their HP.

The best part is that Magic Missile can scale as you level up and gain better spell slots. For instance, you can cast this as a level three spell and gain more missiles to target with, which results in more damage overall. It is an incredible spell, which I have used in several fights where I am overwhelmed by foes but was able to recover due to taking out multiple at once with it.

There is even a fight or two in this game where the opponent has incredible resistance where accuracy, no matter if it’s melee or ranged, is horrible, such as the prologue fight with Commander Zhalk. But Magic Missile works no matter what, even then. Put this spell on every party member if you can through multiclassing or feats.

FAQs

Question: What is the Best Cantrip in Baldurs Gate 3?

Answer: The best cantrip in Baldurs Gate 3 is either Guidance or Eldritch Blast. The former radically changes conversations, as you will always have a boost to your dice rolls if you use it. On the other hand, Eldritch Blast can be upgraded as you level up Warlock to be the best and most reliable cantrip damaging spell.

Question: What is the Best Race for magic in Baldurs Gate 3?

Answer: There is no best race for magic in Baldurs Gate 3 since stats are no longer tied to races in the full release, unlike the early access version. That said, if you have no preference in races, I suggest the High Elf or High Half-Elf since they get to pick an extra cantrip as their unique trait.

Question: What is the Best Sorcerer Spell in Baldurs Gate 3?

Answer: The best Sorcerer spell in Baldurs Gate 3 that the class naturally learns is the Magic Missile. As mentioned above, its unbelievable 100% accuracy, solid damage potential, and level-scaling possibilities make it a game-changer that can turn the tides of tough fights.

Many Players Love Spells in Baldur’s Gate 3

Spellcasting is by far my favorite part of the combat in Baldur’s Gate 3. I would honestly argue that melee combat and even the ranged combat with bows and the like is pretty mediocre in this game. There is almost no fun to it outside of the few classes that can attack twice on a single turn.

Spellcasting is so much more flashy and intriguing than this game’s other forms of combat. The best part, though, is that it doesn’t matter what class you pick; you can learn and use some spells through feats or multiclassing. This way, you can learn the best spell in the game: Magic Missile or one of the many others.

You can even join the hundreds of thousands of other players who are doing this right now in Baldur’s Gate 3. After its official launch, the game has had immense success, ballooning to a massive player base that is all diving in, roleplaying, talking to animals, healing their allies, and damaging foes with the spells listed above.

Continue reading:

Baldur’s Gate 3 Getting Started Guide: The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide to Baldur’s Gate 3

Baldur’s Gate 3 Classes Guide: Which is the Best Class for You?

Baldur’s Gate 3 Escape the Nautiloid Guide: How to Beat the Prologue

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