Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin build: Race, subclass, background, more

Lucas Simons
Baldur's Gate 3 PaladinLarian Studios

In Baldur’s Gate 3, Paladins are strong fighters who combine unmatched durability with holy abilities to eliminate their enemies. Here’s the best Paladin build for Baldur’s Gate 3, with the best Oath to take and skills to pick.

Paladins can be a hard class to master in Baldur’s Gate 3, however, if you wish to lead the attack from the frontline, this class will help you with great strategic impact and healing abilities. A Paladin is a versatile character to have in every BG3 party.

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Depending on your Oath, you’ll be able to use various Divine Powers to enhance your attacks with lethal effects and access specific spells as a Divine Caster. With that in mind, here’s how you can set up the best Paladin build in Baldur’s Gate 3, including which Oath to take and skills to choose.

Best race for Paladin in Baldur’s Gate 3

Human Paladin Baldur's Gate 3Larian Studios
Humans are a great choice as a race for a Paladin in Baldur’s Gate 3.

When you create your Paladin in Baldur’s Gate 3, these are the three best options you can take, considering bonuses and ability scores:

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  • High Half-Elf: Dark Vision, Civil Militia, Fey Ancestry, Base Speed +9m per turn
  • Human: Base Speed +9m per turn, Additional Skill, 1/4 extra Carry Capacity, Extra Weapon Proficiency.
  • Mephistopheles Tiefling: Base Speed +9m per turn, Dark Vision, Hellish Resistance

With a Paladin, your focus should be on utility and versatility. For this particular build, we will go with Mobility. So, Human and High Half-Elf will be great choices. Both have extra weapon proficiencies, which give you more choices to equip some of the finest weapons you’ll encounter while exploring the Sword Coast.

Additionally, High Half-Elf as well as Mephistopheles Tiefling have access to an extra utility like Darkvision, and Humans have the always useful Additional Skill.

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Best Oath for Paladin in Baldur’s Gate 3

The Best Oath for Paladins in Baldur’s Gate 3 is the Oath of the Ancients. As a Paladin, you also have access to two other Oaths to choose from: Oath of Vengeance, and Oath of Devotion. You can also be branded as an Oathbreaker, either by choice or by failing to uphold your Oath during certain dialogue choices.

When choosing your Oath, keep in mind that this will determine the path you’ll follow and your Divine Caster Spell pool. We are going with the Oath of the Ancients, which focuses on healing you and your allies.

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We will also be choosing the Two-Handed Weapon Fighting Style at level 2, as it grants access to bonuses for the mightiest weapons in the game.

Paladin Oath of VengeanceLarian Studios
Paladins from the Oath of the Ancients have powerful damaging spells.

What is an Oathbreaker Paladin in Baldur’s Gate 3?

In Baldur’s Gate 3 when a Paladin misses their chances to respect the Tenants of their Oath, they lose a charge of their Divine Protection. You have limited charges during your whole adventure, and some choices can drain them all in one fell swoop.

When that happens, your Paladin becomes an Oathbreaker, and a mysterious character called Oathbreaker Knight will appear. Be it after combat, or after a dialogue scene where you took the wrong path, the mysterious figure will compel you to meet him at your camp by nightfall.

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There, he will explain that you have failed to uphold your Oath, and thus, your divine powers are forfeit. In exchange, you will acquire similar powers, drawn from darkness. Your healing abilities will become damage abilities, and you will gain the power to summon the undead.

You will become a Dark Paladin, and you will have two choices, remain on this dark path or try to redeem yourself.

Oathbreaker Knight Baldur's Gate 3Larian Studios
Always respect the Tenants of your Oath if you don’t want to be an Oathbreaker.

Best background for Paladin in Baldur’s Gate 3

The best background choice for a Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin would be the Soldier background, as it grants proficiency with the skills Athletics and Intimidation. However, the Outlander background is also a great choice.

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Baldur’s Gate 3 allows players to pick one of 13 different backgrounds to equip their characters with some Story-bound origin. At the same time, they provide access not only to particular dialogue choices, but to certain skill bonuses that will be tremendously useful during your journey.

You should focus on the following skill choices for your Paladin. Options marked with * should be selected for the proficiency bonus:

  • Athletics*
  • Persuasion/Intimidation*
  • Insight
  • Medicine or Religion

Best build for Paladin in Baldur’s Gate 3

In Baldur’s Gate 3, Paladins from the Oath of Vengeance should always pursue Evil and strike down evildoers. To uphold your oath means to keep your powers and not become an Oathbreaker. Stay alert for dialogue choices that imply those two things. Basically, never let a villain run, nor pardon his life.

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A Paladin’s main feature is Divine Smite, an empowered strike with divine force that can do tons of damage to Evil enemies. This can be used a certain number of times per day, so be mindful of it, and save it for dangerous enemies.

  • Race: High Half-Elf
  • Background: Soldier
  • Skills: Insight, Intimidation, and Athletics
  • Abilities (from highest to lowest): Charisma, Strength, Constitution, Dexterity, Wisdom, Intelligence.
  • Best Weapon: Spear/Great sword

Upon leveling up, you will gain access to certain choices, including Feats and Skills. You should choose the following path for the best build:

1Actions: Lay on Hands, Divine Sense – Subclass: Oath of the Ancients
2Spells: Command, Compelled Duel – Fighting Style: Duelling
3Spell: Shield of Faith
4Spell: Heroism, Protection from Evil and Good – Ability Improvement: Charisma +2
5Spells: Magic Weapon
6Aura of Protection
7Spell: Branding Smite
8Ability Improvement: Strength +2
9Spell: Revivify
10Lay on Hands Charge – Aura of Courage
11Improved Divine Smite – Spell: Blinding Smite
12Feat: Athlete

We highly recommend you equip your Paladin with The Blood of Lathander, a legendary weapon you can find by following our best weapons in Baldur’s Gate 3 guide.

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That’s the Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Paladin build. Keep in mind that the game may be updated in the future with more features and content, so the build can change depending on that.

We will keep this guide up to date to inform you about those changes. For now, you could also check out our other Baldur’s Gate 3 guides:

Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Warbreaker Paladin build: Multiclass, equipment, moreBaldur’s Gate 3 Warlock build | Baldur’s Gate 3 Druid build | Baldur’s Gate 3 best companions | Soul Coins in Baldur’s Gate 3 | Baldur’s Gate 3 PC system requirements | How to craft Potions in Baldur’s Gate 3: All recipes & ingredients

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About The Author

Lucas is a Game Writer and Game Reviewer with years of experience as a fiction author and Game Designer. He enjoys writing about Pokemon, RPGS, Nintendo, and all things Gaming Related.